A cute expression on Golden Retriever’s face says it all. It is one of the most popular dogs in USA. Not only in USA but all over the world it is the most sought after domestic pet. As the name suggests ‘retriever’, it excels in retrieving games like hunting, trekking, sniffing out drugs etc. It is also used as therapy dog by the people who are suffering from depression and anxiety.
This dog is also considered as the most loving and caring dog breed. It is termed as “perfect dog” by its admirer. They make great family member and your children would be happy to find a new friend in this dog. Its loyal and outgoing personality makes it an ideal dog for first time dog owners.
Golden Retriever Origin
It is a 19th century breed of Scotland developed by Lord Tweedmouth. Though there were already many retrievers but he wanted a dog that could combat the rough terrain and extreme weather condition. To obtain his desired breed, he crossbred Wavy-Coated Retriever with a Tweed Water Spaniel.
The resultant dog was remarkable at hunting birds. Eventually the yellow Wavy-Coated Retriever was mated with black retrievers, Bloodhounds, setters, and Tweed Spaniels. The resultant breed was a beautiful looking thick coated puppy called golden (yellow) retriever. This dog was recognized by American kennel club in 1927.
Golden Retriever Facts And Characteristics
- They are a native breed of Scotland and categorized into working class breed
- They are heavy shedders
- They are family oriented dog. It is advisable not to leave this dog alone in the backyard
- They are fond of eating and prone to getting obese
- They are active breeds and need at least an hour exercise
- They are gentle with kids but being huge in size they can knock down kids unknowingly
- They live around 10 to 12 years
- They weigh around 30–34 kg
- Their average height ranges from 56–61 cm
- They come at number 5th when it comes to popularity in the world.
- They are kind and reliable dogs
- They are available in shades of golden and cream.
- Their price is around $700 to $800
- They are not hypoallergenic breed.
Golden Retriever Appearance
They appear to be cute like a teddy. They have a symmetrical body proportion that is far from being clumsy. The sweet and kind expression on their face can make anyone fall in love with them. They are eager, attentive and confident dogs. They are medium length dogs with sturdily built up body. Their feather like coat comes in all shades of gold. The face of this dog is broad with tapering muzzle. Eyes and nose are dark in color and ears are hanged at front.
Size and Weight
The average height of the male dog ranges from 23 to 24 inches while the female height ranges from 21.5 to 22.5 inches. Male weighs around 65 to 75 pounds and female weighs around 55 and 65 pounds.
Coat and Color
The dog possesses double coat that is thick and water repellent. Coat structure can either be straight or wiry. Feathering can be found in back legs, chest, things and tails. The coat color ranges from dark golden to light golden. A dog sporting white color on its coat is not a standard breed. With age the color of the coat can lighten.
Golden Retriever Temperament
- Personality – It is an ideal family dog. They love people with all their hearts and are human pleasers. They are loyal and trust worthy dogs. They are playful and cheerful around children. Even with strangers they are amiable in nature however this doesn’t make them effective guard dogs. Their keen sense of smell helps police to catch drugs and other illegal substances. Golden retrievers tend to be sensitive so it should never be left alone. They are also remarkable bird hunters.
- Behavior – This breed is a sweet tempered and a well-mannered dog. They tend to enjoy people’s company without being yappy. They have a habit of chewing so it should be provided with toys to chew upon so that they don’t chew leather, shoes and furniture. Leaving the dog alone can give rise to behavioral problems like excessive barking and chewing. They are naturally a social animal and love to befriend other canine animals.
- Trainability – They are a people pleaser and will do anything to make humans happy. This makes them an ideal dog for first time dog owners. They are naturally friendly and social animals, so not much effort has to be made in teaching them socialization. According to your needs you can train your dog as service dog, police dog or companion dog. This dog is even used by blind people for guidance purpose.
- Activities Requirement – They need less amount of exercise as compared to other retrievers. One hour walk is sufficient for this breed. But they do need lot of space to wander and run. So they are not an ideal apartment dog. Their huge size also makes it problematic to pet it in small house.
Golden Retriever Diet
Daily recommended food is 2-3 cups divided into two regular meals. The amount of food depends upon its size, age, and level of activity. Golden Retriever attains adulthood at the age of 12 months to 18 months, and then it requires food formulated for adult dogs. Feed them high-quality dry dog food that contains 25-30% protein, along with foods with nutrients and minerals. Provide raw meat, yogurt, cottage cheese, chopped/ processed vegetables.
Do not overfeed the dog that leads to obesity and maintain a regular feeding schedule, and do not leave food around all the time. Provide clean water always around them. You can prefer commercial dog food that primarily contains chicken, turkey, bacon, lamb, and beef. High quality grains like brown rice should be fed to it. Its diet should contain fat and protein. Do not feed raw egg, coffee, chocolate to this dog.
Golden retrievers are medium to large dogs, and the average lifespan is around 11 to 12 years of age.
This dog is not a hypoallergenic breed. They suffer from genetic disorders, along with other common health concerns. Cancer is the biggest killer of Golden Retriever’s which amount to 61.4% in America as per 1998 health study and 38.8% as per 2004 data. Hip and elbow dysplasia affects one-fifth of dogs. Eye diseases like cataracts, glaucoma, progressive retinal atrophy can be seen. The common health concerns of this bred include,
- Hip Dysplasia
- Heart Diseases
- Patella Luxation
- Elbow Dysplasia
- Digestion problem
They shed a lot especially during the spring. Daily brushing is recommended to keep the dead hair in control and to prevent hair from getting tangled. This dog possess doggy odor so bathing twice a month is recommended. If the dog doesn’t wears down its nails naturally trim it immediately. Brushing its teeth daily will keep it away from dental problems. Check its ear weekly for the signs of irritation or wax build up.
Golden Retrievers are active and playful dogs that require ample space to thrive. House with a spacious yard is recommended for this breed and not suitable for apartment living. They tolerate both cold and hot weather.
- Male – Jason, Dave, Toby, Andy, Bill
- Female – Miya, Sophie, Ruby, Lola, Sia
Things To Consider Before Buying
- They are trustworthy and reliant breeds.
- They are easy to train and perfect choice for first time dog owners.
- They are social in nature and befriend any human beings.
- They tend to be little vocal.
- They shed a lot.
- Vet bills can go high.