You might have seen a golden retriever in your neighborhood or while walking in the garden or in your friend’s place. The golden retriever is one of the most popular dog breeds among dog lovers. There are several reasons that encourage dog lovers to prefer this dog breed as their wonderful family pet.
The friendly nature, tolerant attitude, and intelligence are some of the characteristics that make this dog breed highly popular in the United States and several other countries.
This dog has a medium-size body weighing around 55-75 pounds and typically has a lifespan of about 10-12 years. As they are easy to train dog breed, this makes them a preferable pet dog for families with young kids.
In addition to the sporting behavior, these dogs are also very active, which means they require a minimum of one hour of daily exercise. They love to play and retrieve anything that is thrown for them. These characteristics make them amazing hunting companions as well as skilled service dogs.
If you have a dog retriever, he will not only love to spend time with you, but you can also make him participate in various obedience and agility events.
One thing you need to work on is controlling his tendency to chew on objects. This can easily be done by providing him a box filled with toys. This way, he will become used to his toys and carry them around in the mouth.
Golden Retriever – Popular Dog Breed Information
- Height – 21-24 inches
- Weight – 55-75 pounds
- Lifespan – 10-12 years
- Breed Group – Sporting dogs
- Energy Level – Average
- Tendency to Bark – Moderate
- Social/Attention Needs – High
- Coat Length – Medium
- Exercise Needs – High
- Common Health Issues – Ear Infection, Elbow, and Hip Dysplasia
Golden Retriever History
If we talk about the history of the golden retrievers’ dog breed, it was started in 1999 when they were the second most popular AKC dog breed. This dog breed has several qualities that not only make him the popular breed among dog lovers, but they are also a perfect family pet.
These dogs were bred to become bird dogs, especially for hunting waterfowl. This breed was the result of cross-breeding of many other breeds, such as spaniels, setters, bloodhounds, and the Newfoundland. This crossing has developed a strong swimming dog capable enough to survive even in the cold water.
These dogs can also easily deal with crippled birds. These days, in addition to these features, golden retrievers are also popular as service dogs, search, and rescue dogs. Only a few dogs can withstand the capabilities of this dog’s versatility.
Golden Retriever Appearance
Though this dog breed is usually golden, you can find golden retrievers in various shades, such as light golden, dark golden. They have feathers on the backs of their forelegs, thighs, on the front of their necks, and on the bottom of their tail. They have long floppy ears that enhance their playful personality.
You might have also heard about or seen a mini golden retriever that looks very similar to a puppy. But, do you know that these mini golden retrievers are a mixture of other dog breeds? They are not golden retrievers. If you are looking for different dog breeds to own, including a golden retriever, you must be known about this fact.
Another name of the golden coat is a double coat that includes a water-repellent out coat and a soft undercoat. This type of coat makes this dog breed able to keep its body temperature controlled in different weather conditions – cold and warm.
Just like other dogs, these dogs also shed their coat. So, if you prevent heavy blowouts in the peak seasons, such as fall and spring, make sure to brush your dog weekly or more frequently. It should be done daily during shedding months. When you give them a proper brushing, they need only occasional baths.
Golden Retriever Personality
If we talk about the personality of this dog breed, they are kind, trustable, and gentle. These characteristics of golden retrievers make them preferable family dogs, but they are not suitable as guard dogs. Though they are intelligent, playful, and active, they can’t live alone for a longer period as it may make them deal with anxiety. If you are a demonstrative and involved owner, your dog will always be happy and healthy.
These dogs are very gentle with kids and can also live smoothly with other pets and strangers. They are always ready to please. Due to this reason, they work great during obedience training and can become excellent service dogs. Whether it is about fetching anyone’s slipper or hunting birds, these dogs love to work most of their time.
They are not considered good watchdogs because they are not often barkers and also lack good guard qualities. But, you may find some of these dogs informing their owners when strangers are approaching.
Golden Retriever Training
These dogs are not only agreeable but are also very easy to train. If you left your dog for too much time alone, they would not be happy at all. They will also miss their daily walk. You need to not only work on their training but also take care of their needs for closeness and physical activity.
Some experts also say that as these dogs are highly intelligent, they also love to get rewards. So, when your dog does anything good, you must give him a treat or praise him. These dogs are excellent with clicker training and obedience training. Here are some Dog Training Tips that you must know.
More than these, they also work effectively as service dogs, while some of them can be seen working in more demanding jobs, such as search and rescue. When you give training to your dog, make sure to include water and rest breaks and avoid exhausting training.
Golden Retriever Health
Just like other dog breeds, this dog breed is also prone to certain health issues. You must know that about one-fifth of these dogs experience some kind of joint disease once in their lifespan. These can be hip dysplasia or elbow dysplasia. As compared to other dog breeds, golden retrievers are more prone to develop heart disease, such as SAS. This disease can be deadly in severe cases.
They can also become a victim of cancers, such as hemangiosarcoma and osteosarcoma. Apart from these health issues, these dogs need love and care as long as they are a part of your family. Some owners of this dog breed opt for per health insurance to deal with any unexpected health situation. You should know about these Best Pet Insurance For Dog In US.
It is also recommended to keep their ears clean as it will help in avoiding any kind of ear infection. Due to their ear shape, they are more prone to get an ear infection. You can talk to your vet about the proper and safe way of cleaning their ears.
Golden Retriever Diet and Nutrition
When we talk about the diet of these dogs, it is very important to give them quality and balanced commercial dog food. But, at the same time, you must keep in mind that one portion of food does not fit all sizes. It completely depends on the individual needs of your dog. Certain factors that need to be considered are age, weight, and activity level. You must talk to your vet to find the right diet plan for your dog.
There may also happen that your dog develops food allergies. The symptoms of any kind of food allergy to the dog cause itchy skin and excessive licking. So, you should work on changing the diet of your dog as it will help in managing these conditions. But make sure not to start or stop anything without consulting your vet.
Golden Retriever Grooming
When it is about the grooming of golden retrievers, the very first thing you must know about them is that they have a dense, water-repellent double coat. These dogs are more likely to shed their undercoat during fall and spring. During these seasons, it is important to do daily brushing as it will work great in removing dead fur. During the other seasons, it would be fine if you brush their coat once a week. Always keep in mind that if you own this dog breed, you must take care of their grooming.
You can also give an occasional bath to your dog as it is required to keep them clean. Moreover, it also helps in removing shed fur. Like other dogs, you should also trim their nails regularly. Don’t forget to clean their teeth with regular brushing as it is required to maintain their dental health. Also read about Dog Dental Cleaning – How To Clean Dog’s Teeth?
Don’t get scared of their grooming. Though they have a thick undercoat and long outercoat, if you brush them on a regular basis, you will find this grooming task much easier than you think. You should brush their coat every 1-3 days. But, don’t forget to groom their hind legs and the back of their ears. These are the areas that are more likely to develop tangles and mats.
Always keep in mind that wavy-haired golden retrievers can develop tangles more than straight-haired retrievers. So, they need a little more brushing and care.
More Qualities and Characteristics of Golden Retrievers
If you are considering a golden retriever, you must go through this brief information about this dog breed.
They Have High Energy When Young
Young retrievers like up to 2-3 years of age love to romp and jump with joy. They love to spend time joyfully and can make things go flying, and you can find them not steady on their feet. If you have a kid in your home, you can consider getting an adult dog from a rescue group. It is so because adult dogs have an excellent settled temperament, and they can easily get used to living with you and your family.
They Provide Adequate Exercise and Mental Stimulation
These dogs are highly active, athletic, and smart. They always look for one or another opportunity to exhaust their energy and love to spend time doing interesting things. If you have a golden retriever, you just can’t let him stay inside most of the time or out in the backyard. Having this dog means enough exercise and mental stimulation. Also, these dogs get bored when alone for a long period. They show this behavior by becoming noisy and destructive.
They are Heavy Shedders
If you are planning of owning a golden retriever, you must be ok with the reality that this dog breed is a heavy shredder. Once you get him in your home, you will start finding lots of hair on your clothes and furniture over time. In addition to this, these dogs also have a doggy odor and produce too much dander. If you or anyone in your family has any kind of allergy, you have to think twice and thrice before owning this dog breed.
They Need Grooming
Some of the retrievers have a medium-length coat and do not require much grooming, while others have a heavy coat, so they need regular grooming. These dogs with a heavier coat must be groomed regularly to avoid their coat bring tangled. They also require occasional clipping and scissoring as they need to be cleaned around their bathroom parts and other areas.
They May Get Affected with Serious Health Problems
Unfortunately, this dog breed has many potential health problems. Many of these dogs live up to 12-13 years, but they are mostly unhealthy during these years. They can get affected by one or another health issue. Many retrievers at the age of 6-8 are prone to get affected by crippling joint, bone disease, heart disease, or cancer. Just make sure not to give a kibble diet to your retriever dog as it can cause one or another skin disorder and allergy.
What is the ideal environment for a golden retriever?
These dogs need lots of exercise and love to spend time in the open spaces for retrieving. Due to this reason, these dogs are the best dog breed for people who have a house with a large backyard or the people who can take them outside for a walk. If you have kids, this dog breed can be the best and safe choice for a family pet.
Are these dogs good with kids?
Yes, they work well with kids. They are gentle, kind, and very patient while playing with kids. You should be careful when you have a puppy or adult dog as they can be very energetic at this age and can knock small kids over with ease.
What about the exercise needs when you have a golden retriever?
These dogs are sporting so they need a lot of exercise. It will help in keeping them healthy and mentally stimulated. When they are fully grown, you can make them perform plenty of regular high-intensity exercise. But make sure to avoid these high-intensity exercises on puppies. You can’t consider these exercises until they are 18 months old.
How much do golden retrievers shed?
These dogs shed quite heavily. They shed their hair all through the year. If you have this dog breed in your home, it means you will notice their hair all over the home here and there. The heavy shedding occurs two times a year – fall and spring.