There's very little player strategy in Red Dog and that has to do with the fact that the player doesn't even set hands on their own cards. In order to play Red Dog the dealer turns over 2 cards and then players must bet on the likelihood of the 3rd card falling within the first 2. Since with Red Dog, it really is about the luck of the draw, and players have no control over the cards whatsoever, Red Dog strategy is simple!
There's really only one strategy, but there are a number of reasons for it in Red Dog - the secret strategy is that player should only raise when the spread is 7 or more! This strategy is used since the only time that players have an edge over the house, and there's much better odds in the player's favor. The odds are the best when the spread is 7 because a total of 7 cards can create a winning hand and with 13 cards that fall between 2 and Ace, there are only 6 cards that can make players lose if they bet on the third card falling between the first two in value. The house edge in Red Dog is around 2.8% but it shifts slightly in the player's favor once the spread is 7 or higher.
Additional Red Dog Strategy:
- Avoid taking the raise bet on spreads 1 to 6 as the house edge is greatly applied, giving players little opportunity to win
- Raise bets which are 7 or more - the house edge drops to -12% which are the best odds in Red Dog. The percentage for the house edge here is based upon a 7 spread specifically
- Raise bets which are 11 every time! - the house edge with an 11 spread is perhaps the best bet in Red Dog since the house edge is -76%, putting the odds heavily on the players favor
- Never raise on bets below 6 - the chances of winning are slim, you'll have to bet initially, but don't have to raise
- Try to find 6 deck Red Dog - the house edge when six decks are used in Red Dog decrease even further in all types of bets
Of course, the best strategy in Red Dog is to understand how the game works, here are the basic playing rules.
- Players at the table place bets before any cards are dealt on the good faith that the third card drawn by the dealer will fall between the first two
- The dealer shuffles the cards once all players have made their first bets and then draws two cards, playing them on the table face down. In order to help players decide whether to raise their bet, the dealer puts down a Red Dog marker that has a number to indicate the spread of the third card when compared to the two cards already drawn. The spread is based on the number of cards that have a value that falls between the first two
- Once players have a chance to look at the spread marker, they have the choice to raise their wager in intervals equal to their original bet; or they can choose not to
- The dealer draws the third card and puts all three face up on the table
- If the value of the third card does fall between the first two, all players have a payoff