Thai Ridgeback vs Combai - Breed Comparison | MyDogBreeds

Thai Ridgeback vs CombaiThai Ridgeback is originated from Thailand but Combai is originated from India. Both Thai Ridgeback and Combai are having almost same height. Both Thai Ridgeback and Combai are of same weight. Both Thai Ridgeback and Combai has almost same life span. Both Thai Ridgeback and Combai has almost same litter size. Thai Ridgeback requires Moderate maintenance. But Combai requires Low maintenance

Basic Information

Hound dog
Hound dog
Height Male:
56 - 61 cm
22 - 25 inches
43 - 64 cm
16 - 26 inches
Height Female:
51 - 56 cm
20 - 23 inches
43 - 64 cm
16 - 26 inches
Weight Male:
23 - 34 kg
50 - 75 pounds
18 - 34 kg
39 - 75 pounds
Weight Female:
23 - 32 kg
50 - 71 pounds
18 - 34 kg
39 - 75 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 13 Years
12 - 15 Years
Litter Size:
4 - 6
3 - 8
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
Thai Ridgeback Dog • TRD • Mah Thai • Thai Dog • Mah Thai Lung Arn
Indian Bear Hound, Indian Bear Dog and Tamil Bear Hound
Colors Available:
brown, red or blue, black
Brown, reddish, tan
short, straight with ridge
Short and smooth
Independent, Intelligent, Loyal, Protective
Affectionate, Aggressive, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Protective, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Moderate maintenance
Low maintenance
Kids Friendly:
New Owners Friendly:


thai ridgebackUntil recently the Thai Ridgeback was not known outside of its native land. However, after being recently recognized as a standard breed, the dogs are getting some notice from the western world. They are one of three known ridgeback breeds with the ridge running the opposite direction of the rest of her fur. The other breeds with this characteristic are the better known Rhodesian Ridgeback and the even lesser known Phu Quoc Ridgeback.

The Thai Ridgeback is believed to have originated in eastern Thailand but there is no documentation of their actual history. The breed is thought to be descended from the Funan Ridgeback based on a genetic hypothesis. It is thought that the same Funan Ridgeback is an ancestor od the Phu Quoc Dog. This Funan Ridgeback lived over a century ago. Along with the Rhodesian Ridgeback, all have a common ridgebearing ancestor.

It is still unknown where the original ridge came from but it has been shown that all of the ridgeback dogs have the same genetic mutation and even though the Rhodisian is from Africa, there is not a parallel mutation. The Thai Ridgeback is an active, energetic, tough dog. He is loyal, intelligent, and has great jumping ability.

combaiThe Combai is a dog from Tamilnadu, Southern India, developed to hunt dangerous animals by the Indian royalty. It is a rare breed in India, believed to be close to extinction.

The dog is also known as the Indian Bear Hound, Indian Bear Dog and Tamil Bear Hound. You can spell the name of the dog with a ‘C’ or a ‘K’, Combai or Kombai.

Accurate records as to the history of this dog haven’t been kept, so much of the dog’s history is on speculation, although it is believed with some certainty, that the breed has been around since the 15th century. It is thought that the Combai was developed from Mastiff-type dogs, Pariah dogs, the Thai Ridgeback and Khoisan dogs.


thai ridgeback puppyThe breed is medium in size and muscular in body. They have a wedge shaped head, a short coat that is smooth and pricked, triangular ears. The ridge on his back is pronounced as the hair grows away from the rest of the coat from the hips to the withers. Puppies can be born with or without the ridge. They are extremely agile. With what is often called a sword tail being carried up, the Ridgeback has wrinkles on his forehead, a black tongue or the tongue has black marks, and almond shaped eyes.

The coat sheds minimally and is dense, while the eyes are usually brown – in blue dogs they can be amber. The color of the coat is fawn, red, black or blue with a black mask on the reds. There are 8 different ridge patterns: Feather, violin, saddleback, needle, arrow, bowling pin, lute, and leaf. The broader the ridge the better the dog is considered for show.

There are two epistatic genes that determine the ridge and its size. The more genes of this type the individual dog has, the broader the ridge will be. There must be a dominant gene for the ridge to appear at all.

combai puppyThe Combai is a medium sized dog, standing at between 43 to 64cm in height and weighing up to 34kg. Possibly the most distinctive feature of the Combai is a ridge of fur that runs down its back, with the hair growing in the opposite direction to the dog’s body hair. The coat of the dog is short and smooth with colors being brown, tan or reddish. The dog is medium sized, though size does vary quite a bit . The dog is muscular, lean and athletic with a long tail that curls over the back.

The head of the Combai is fairly narrow with a muzzle which is quite long.The ears of the Combai vary as well and usually drop down or they fold backwards.


The Combai’s temperament is by no means gentle and it is believed to be a fierce, angry breed who will fight other dogs to the death.

It is sometimes hard to believe that the Combai, with training and socialization can make a good family pet. He then loves the company of his human family and remains loyal to them. When trained and socialized they also get on well with children in the home.

It isn’t recommended as a first dog choice for those who have never owned a dog as it does tend to be aggressive. The dog is also very territorial and alert and its why he makes a good watchdog.

Health Problems

thai ridgeback dogWith such a mysterious origin, there are not a lot of documented episodes of genetic illness as the breed has been isolated in Thailand and natural selection has driven reproduction. There are only a few issues that they are genetically predisposed to. These include:

• Dermoid Sinus – this is a genetic skin condition known as pilonidal sinus as well. This is a defect in the neural tube and the sinus might be removed. If the sinus is wrapped around the spinal cord and cannot be removed it can be tied off.

  • Hip dysplasia – can cause lameness and/or arthritis.

• Bloat – can be terminal if not treated as soon as possible. Bloat is a distension of the stomach and intestines which can twist and tangle, killing the dog almost immediately without veterinary attention.

combai dogMost dog experts will agree that the Combai is a breed that enjoys excellent health, and that in fact it seems as though the dog is disease- and parasite resistant.

There are however, always common dog illnesses that every dog owner should be aware of and it is always to a dog owner’s benefit to have their pet tested by Foundations such as the Orthopedic- and Canine Eye Registration Foundation who can perform tests to identify potential health defects before they show up.

Some of the ailments of concern in hounds include progressive retinal atrophy, demoid sinus and hip dysplasia.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy:

The Retina is the light sensitive part of the eye and also part of the central nervous system. In retinal degeneration, the cells of the retina decline in function and this is what leads to possible blindness.

Progressive retinal atrophy worsens with time. If your pet doesn’t seem to react to light properly it may be wise to have him checked by the vet.

Demoid Sinus:

This defect is found in newborns as well as later on in life, and found primarily in Ridgeback dogs. Dermoid sinus is a neural tube defect that is typically found along your dog’s back, the tail and the neck.

The role of the tubes is to drain out dead cells for example. Not correctly formed, they become infected and an abscess forms with discharge. You will have to get your pet to the vet who will proceed with treatment as your pet can experience pain and discomfort.

Caring The Pet

thai ridgeback puppies1. Feeding the Puppy - Don’t over feed the puppy as they are inclined to become obese. Feed a high quality protein rich puppy for medium breeds. Feed in 3-4 smaller meals per day. As he grows be aware of bloat possibilities.

2. Feeding the adult dog - The risk of bloat is even greater in the adult and so is the risk of obesity. Don’t feed large meals and don’t feed before or after strenuous exercise. Feed in 2 smaller meals per day.

3.Points for Good Health - Agile and muscular.

4. Games and Exercises – Energetic and needs serious exercise. She loves to swim, retrieve, hike, hunt, and catch frisbees. Likes search and rescue and guard dog work.


combai puppiesThe Combai is an active dog and he will require quite a bit of exercise. A good way of giving him exercise is to take him on walks or allow him to go jogging with you or cycling.

Denying him exercise will make him frustrated and destructive. His high exercise needs mean that he won’t do well in small apartments but will do well in the suburbs or in the country.


With his short coat, the Combai is a low maintenance breed.  This breed should never require professional grooming, only an occasional brushing.  Other than that, he will require his nails being clipped, his ears checked for infection and his teeth cleaned 2 or 3 times a week.


High energy dogs like the Combai will require a top quality kibble diet recommended by your vet with raw meat included in his diet from time to time as well as nutritious cooked food added in such as brown rice, vegetables and cooked chicken. Fresh water must be available to him night and day non-stop.


. Children friendliness – Must be well socialized into the family.

2.Special talents – jumping and agility.

3.Adaptability – not good. Needs a high, unclimbable fense.

4.Learning ability – can be stubborn and independent.

combai dogsThe Combai is known for its bravery and fearlessness and this is what makes him such an exceptional watch dog as he also doesn’t take kindly to strangers.

The Combai is full of energy too and won’t like to spend days lying around. He will require regular exercise.

Have him trained and socialized and he becomes the most loyal and devoted pet and companion.

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