Flat-Coated Retriever : A Dual Purpose Retriever

This breed is a dual purpose retriever of land and water games. It possesses endless energy and is not suitable for apartment life. They are highly social and wouldn’t mind being friends with strangers and other animals. However this trait doesn’t make them good watchdogs.

They are affectionate towards children but toddlers should be taken care of because of its wagging tail can knock them off unknowingly. With adult children they form strong bonds and love to play around them.


As they are hunting dogs so they are born to live in farms where they can chase animals like rabbit, squirrel and rodents and satisfy their hunting instincts. They possess confidence, happy and outgoing demeanor and love to please humans. They are also even tempered dogs, and bark whenever necessary.

Flat-Coated Retriever Origin

They were bred as gundog for their ability to excel in hunting and retrieving games both on land and water. This bred was developed by cross mating sheepdogs, spaniels with water dog.

Eventually the resultant breed became popular was traded between England and North America. They are known by the names- St. John’s Newfoundland, the Small Labrador Dog and the Lesser Newfoundland.


Flat-Coated Retriever Facts And Characteristics

  1. They are gundog who excels on land and water
  2. They are highly energetic dogs and who needs ample amount of exercise
  3. They need to have human contact all through their life else they tend to be psychotic in nature
  4. They are not suitable for apartment as they need space to open up
  5. They live around 8 to 14 years
  6. They are available in three colors- black, liver and yellow
  7. They weigh around 27 to 36 kg
  8. They stand at height of 59 to 62 cm tall
  9. They are devoted, friendly, outgoing and sweet tempered dogs
  10. They are originated from UK
  11. You need to have approximately $800 to buy this breed’s puppy
  12. They have a habit of eating their own poop. Pick up the poop as soon as they do.

Flat-Coated Retriever


This breed has an athletic body. They are sleek and have strong legs that help them to give speed and endurance. Their almond shape dark brown or hazel color eyes gives them attractive look. They have wide muzzle with unnoticeable stop. Their ears are flat and covered with feathers and are set higher on head. There is short and elegantly covered with feathers.

  • Size and Weight

Female height ranges from 56 to 59 cm tall and male height ranges from 59 to 62 cm tall. They weigh around 59 to 62 kg.

  • Coat and Color

This breed possesses a long and straight coat which protects them from extreme weather condition and from the thorny bushes that they may encounter while hunting in the wild. You can find feathering in the ears, chest, tail, and back legs. Their coat can be solid black, reddish brown or liver.

Flat-Coated Retriever Temperament

  1. Personality - The Flat-Coated Retriever is always in ecstatic mood. They are brimming with happiness and energy which makes them quite entertaining. Being athletic in nature they love to participate in dog’s sports and hunting is in their bloodline. Unlike other dogs, they take time to get mature. You can also find this dog behaving like puppy and curling up with you on bed. This breed is amiable and social and doesn’t mind even making strangers their friends. They also love to interact with other animals.
  2. Behavior - This breed doesn’t lose its puppy like behavior till the time it doesn’t get well into adulthood. This means they tend to jump and throw themselves on humans. They also like to sit in human’s lap. It is important to teach this dog ‘stay and down’ command through training. They also have a habit to mouth toys and things in house and even family members’ hands. This breed also tends to develop separation issue if left alone.
  3. Training - As these dogs tend to be indiscipline so training them is a bit difficult. You need to be firm with an air of calmness in your behavior because rude behavior with them makes them more stubborn and hooligan. A positive training method that involves treats and appreciation is the key to train them efficiently. Teaching them manners should be the first step of training.
  4. Activities Requirement - Pet this breed only if you have time to devote to your dog. If you are not giving it ample amount of exercise and outdoor walk, it will let you know by behaving in a destructive manner that involves chewing shoes or leather furniture. They love to run, play and run behind bikes.


Flat-Coated Retriever is an active dog, hence formulate diet accordingly. Daily recommended food is 3.5 to 4.5 cups divided into two equal meals. Prefer high-quality dry food for balanced nutrition along with canned food or broth.

Human grade ingredients are recommended and food should contain a blend of fish, wheat, Poultry, Yellow Corn and Oats. Avoid feeding beet pulp, homemade food with red meat, corn, wheat, soy pulp. Do not feed vitamin C supplements which may damage the kidney and liver.

Life Span

They have an average life of 10 to 12 years.

Health Issues

This breed is prone to hereditary health issues like hip dysplasia and progressive retinal atrophy and glaucoma. Studies have shown that this dog has higher chance of encountering cancer, hemangiosarcoma, fibrosarcoma, osteosarcoma, and malignant histiocytosis than other dogs.

Regular checkup of its body is recommended to ensure longevity of its life and early detection of health problems.  Epilepsy is also seen in this breed.


They are easy to groom. They shed lightly throughout the year and heavy shedding is done only at the time of seasonal change. Generally few times brushing in a week is sufficient to keep its coat healthy and shiny. Check its ear to see if it hasn’t built up wax, irritation or infection.

Clean the ear with the solution provided by the vet. This dog being energetic and playful in nature wears off its nails naturally but if it doesn’t trim its nails. Many owners clip its hair in the ear, neck and legs region to give it a clean look. Brush its teeth to avoid any dental problem. Bath the dog only when it gets dirty and starts smelling foul.


This dog is well suited for house accompanies with lawn or yard. They can survive in all weather conditions.

Flat-Coated Retriever


You need to make sure that your dog is in its best health for breeding. Check the medical history of other dogs as well.

Pet Names

  1. Candy
  2. Angie
  3. Diana
  4. Dragon
  5. Liza

Things To Consider Before Buying


  1. They are excellent gundog of both land and water
  2. They are full of energy and loves to entertain humans
  3. They shed less and their grooming needs are low
  4. They make excellent companion dog. They understand human nature well
  5. They can be your partner in running and jogging.


  1. They are not hypoallergenic.
  2. They tend to suffer from serious health conditions like- cancer, fibrosarcoma, osteosarcoma etc.
  3. You need to devote ample amount of time towards this dog as their exercise requirements are high
  4. They tend to develop separation anxiety if left alone. If you constantly have to go on business tour, do not buy this dog
  5. Being social in nature they tend to be friendly with everyone. This trait doesn’t make them good watchdog.