How to Play Red Dog

How to Play Red Dog

This post was written by JC Zuniga on May 15, 2018

Red Dog is a card game that is considered a form of poker (it is also known as Red Dog Poker or Yablon). The game used to be popular in the past but its popularity slowly declined until online casinos re-introduced it and it started gaining enormous popularity. Before we proceed to explanation (the game is pretty simple, you’ll see), it is important to make a distinction between two different card games, both called Red Dog. The one we’re going to talk about is an American game, while there is also a Polish Red Dog (also known as Stitch and Polski Pachuck). They are both games included in casinos and are not really related to each other in terms of the rules.

How to Play Red Dog

Betting in Red Dog

The beginning of the game is marked by players making wagers on the betting spot. When the betting is done, the dealer then places two cards up.

Dealing in Red Dog

The first rule of Red Dog Poker is that if the cards that are placed on the table are two consecutive cards, the wagers are returned to the players and everything starts once again. The dealing will also end if the third dealt card is the same as the first two and in that case, the players win 11:1. If this is not a case, the push happens and the actual game starts.

Playing Red Dog

If there is no pair or three-of-a-kind such as in the case mentioned above, the game continues and the dealer announces spread and the odds. The concept of spread is basically the number between the two face-up cards on the table. For example, if the two cards are 2 and 8, the spread is 5 as there are 5 numbers between 2 and 8. In other words, it is a gap between the two cards. Simply, if the spread is higher, you are more likely to win. However, the higher spread will also bring lower odds. For example, a spread of 5 will have lower odds than the spread of 2.

Objective of Red Dog

Simply, before the third card is drawn, you have to guess whether it is going to be between the other two face-up cards. In other words, you bet whether it is going to be in the spread. Usually, a spread of 4 or more will have 1:1 odds, while the best odds are, of course, for the spread of 1 and it is usually 5:1.

Values of Cards in Red Dog

Since a lot of counting is done in this game, 2 is seen as the lowest value in the game. However, high cards are also given values and here they are:
  • Jack = 11
  • Queen = 12
  • King = 13
  • Ace = 14
For example, if you receive a 2 and an Ace as the two initial cards, the spread will be 11 and it would be very likely that the third card drawn will full under the spread.