Red Dog is increasingly becoming popular in Cambodia since it allows the locals to have rounds of fun and entertainment during their free time. The game was originally a banking game which lets gamblers place a bet on whether a card in hand would be of the same suit as or higher than the card dealt from the pack.
Also known as High Card Pool, Shoot, Slipper Sam, and Polis Red Dog, the name Red Dog is loosely used to refer in most banking games such as In-Between, Ace-Deuce, and Yablon where two cards are given to players facing up and the player bets on whether the third card will be in between the first two cards dealt. Those who want to take a break from hustling it out with poker in Cambodia can play Red Dog.
This guide on how to play red dog covers what is widely played by most enthusiasts. However, it is not uncommon to encounter several variations of the game.
Some Red Dog variations only deal three to four cards to each player to accommodate a larger number of players without the cards running out. Other variations include a bank put up by a dealer like in Slippery Sam. If this variation is played, players do not place ante bets and when the pot runs dry, the deal passes on to the next player.
This variation is pretty similar to Red Dog but has some notable differences such as:
Also known as the Six-Spot Red Dog, Slippery Sam follows the same betting principle of Shoot. The difference is that players place the bet on the basis of the dealer’s show-card, without seeing their own set of cards.
This Red Dog variation is widely played in Indiana and can be played with the dealer handing out three cards to each player and one face up in the middle. The player has the choice to bet against this card or ask the dealer to deal another card, which the player has to pay one-fifth of the pot (it could also be a previously agreed upon amount). If the player chooses not to bet on the second card, the third card can be played for the same price. Once the third card is paid, the player may choose to bet against it or pass without making any bets. The turn then passes on to the next player.
In Polish Red Dog, the banker’s initial stake is fixed and the maximum bet of players is always half of the pot money.
As the player chooses to bet, the dealer must burn one card and deals the next card. The player must then show all his cards. If the player has a higher ranking card with the same suit as that of the dealer’s the player wins twice the pot amount. If the player loses, the bet is included in the pot money.
The only time the dealer moves to the next player is when the pot is busted. If not, the dealer must deal at the end of the hand until the pot reaches thrice its initial amount. When this happens, the dealer must announce a stitch round or the final round where if the pot remains, the money now goes to the dealer.
Learning how to play Red Dog in a traditional setting is important before trying out online Red Dog. Online Red Dog has some differences, particularly about the payout as the payout is often computed depending on the difference of ranks.
Spread or the number of ranks in between the first two cards have different payouts. In most online casinos, it follows:
Players having a card with the same rank in either of the first two cards or card with a rank not in between the first two cards mean the player loses.
It is also important to note that whilst all online casinos follow a standard ruling in Red Dog, the number of decks used varies per software provider.
Learning how to play Red Dog is not complete without knowing some winning strategies. Red Dog strategy is pretty straightforward. Players should never bet if the spread is small. Although the payouts are attractive, small spreads are the worst to bet on. Players should only raise their bets if the spread is more than seven as it indicates a 50% chance of winning.