- Dog suitable for non-experienced owners
- Extra training required
- Need to be aware of potential health issues
- Enjoys active walks
- Enjoys one to two hours of walking a day
- Large dog
- Some drool
- Requires grooming every other day
- Quiet dog
- Welcomes everyone happily
- Generally friendly with other dogs
- Gets along with other pets with training
- Great family dog
- Needs a large garden
- Can live in semi-rural areas
- Can be left occasionally with training
|Colours:||The Golden Retriever comes in various shades of gold from light to dark|
|Kennel Club group:||Gundog|
|Easy to train:||5/5|
|Tolerates being alone:||1/5|
|Likes other pets:||5/5|
The Golden Retriever is a gentle dog with a level disposition, and usually adapts well to family life. They love to be involved in all matters, whether indoors or outdoors. They are foremost a retriever and will attempt to drag, pull or carry anything they can fit into their mouths. They also love water and care should be taken to ensure their safety when any form of water is nearby. Golden Retrievers are, however, worriers, and great care should be taken during training, ensuring sensitivity is maintained at all times.
As long as they have been introduced to cats and other furries as a puppy, they will happily live with all other household animals.
The Golden Retriever will suit an owner or family who are active and love the great outdoors, and who want a friendly trainable large dog who needs lots of exercise and will join in with all activities with joy - and love everyone.
History and Origins
Sir Dudley Marjoribanks (Lord Tweedmouth) took a liking to the yellow colour of the retriever and acquired a dog called 'Nous' from Brighton, England, in 1865 and used him on a Tweed Water Spaniel bitch, which was a liver-coloured retrieving dog. In 20 years of further breeding, and bringing in Labrador Retrievers, Red Setters and possibly a Bloodhound or two to improve scenting and add bone, the Golden Retriever dog breed was developed. In 1908 it was registered and shown as Golden Flatcoats until 1913, when the listing was changed to Golden or Yellow Retrievers until finally, in 1920, they took the name they bear today.
As with many breeds, The Golden Retriever can suffer from various hereditary eye disorders, and hip and elbow dysplasia (joint conditions that can be painful and lead to mobility problems). Eye testing and hip scoring of dogs prior to breeding is therefore important.
Adult Golden Retrievers require a reasonable amount of exercise to keep them in peak condition. As puppies, do ensure they are not over-exercised or bone/joint problems may develop. A couple of hours of daily exercise should be sufficient for a fit adult, though this dog will happily accept more if you can offer it!
Like many gundogs, they can easily become overweight if not given enough exercise - especially as they love their food!
At heart this is a country dog that loves the great outdoors and long walks in the countryside. They can adapt to smaller spaces as long as they have a garden and plenty of daily exercise.
Large breed dogs, as well as having large appetites, benefit from a different balance of nutrients including minerals and vitamins compared to smaller-breed dogs. The Golden Retriever is prone to bloating and stomach problems; smaller, more frequent meals can help minimise this risk.
Because of the density of the coat, Golden Retrievers must be regularly groomed. The undercoat, because of its water-repellent nature, is extremely thick and must not be allowed to mat, causing unnecessary suffering to the animal. Whilst the length of the coat attracts water and mud, this is easily cleaned off once the coat has dried.
Golden Retrievers are great dogs to train - whether in obedience or more traditional gundog work - as they are smart and enjoy pleasing their owners. They need sensitive reward-based training to help them gain confidence and excel. As well as walking exercise, they excel in any games that use their natural retrieving abilities and love working with their owners.
The Golden Retriever is an ideal dog for families as they love everyone, are gentle and enjoys being involved in all activities. They’ll happily come along for car rides and go visiting as they’re highly social.
While many dogs are traditionally thought of as being good with children, all dogs and children need to be taught to get on with and respect each other, and be safe together. Even so, dogs and young children should never be left alone together and adults should supervise all interactions between them.
Did you know?
- The Golden Retriever is one of the most versatile breeds and they can be found doing all kinds of jobs including, disability assistance, guiding, search and rescue, working trials, obedience and agility.
- One Golden Retriever worth mentioning is Bear – the first dog on the scene after the World Trade Centre disaster. He and his handler John Gilkey worked at the site for three months trying to locate people buried in the rubble.
- Golden Retrievers are said to have extremely soft mouths, so soft in fact that they can carry a raw egg in their mouth without cracking the shell.
- Due to their high intelligence and willingness to please, Golden Retriever’s are often used in films and TV shows, some famous ones include Buddy from Air Bud and Shadow from Homeward Bound.
- They are thought to be the 4th smartest dog breed in the world.