Golden Retriever Breed - Dog & Puppy Information & Characteristics

Golden Retrievers are one of the most famous dog breeds in the world and it is obvious why. Once you bring home a Golden Retriever puppy, getting over its tiny, cute face will definitely pose a challenge. These adorable furballs are highly energetic, social, and playful. They make for excellent family dogs, especially if you have children in your family. Golden Retrievers absolutely adore children and are very protective of their human besties. They are also the best cuddle buddies you could ever have, and these four-legged angels love playing with their family and being the centre of attention. Trustworthy, eager to please, easy to train, and extremely friendly, the Golden Retriever dog breed can be the perfect addition to your family.

Key specifications of the Golden Retriever dog breed

Keep these Golden Retriever characteristics in mind before you become a pet parent:

Weight25 to 35 kg
Height21 to 24 inches
Lifespan10 to 12 years
CoatDouble coat

Note: The weight and height mentioned on the table is of a full-grown Golden Retriever and not of a Golden Retriever puppy.

Physical appearance of Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers are one of the most famous dog breeds across the globe today. Known for their luscious and soft fur, these fluffy pups are found in these stunning coat colours:

  • Golden
  • Light Golden
  • Dark Golden

If you find a red or mahogany-coloured Golden Retriever, consider yourself lucky. Mahogany or red Golden Retrievers are extremely rare, and their unique red hue is believed to have originated from when they were bred with Irish Setters. This does not happen in today’s world, making red Golden Retrievers a rare sight.

Golden Retrievers are often mistaken for other breeds such as the Irish Setters, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, and more. If you want to ensure that you’re bringing a purebred Golden Retriever home, look out for these features:

  • Dark to medium brown eyes with a friendly expression
  • Long, feathery tail that is always wagging
  • Floppy ears and blown or black nose

Golden Retriever personality traits

Golden Retrievers are the perfect house dogs. They are naturally outgoing, playful, and gentle. Originally bred to be gun dogs, Golden Retrievers are full of energy and require a lot of activity. They get along really well with children, other pets, and strangers. If you socialise your Golden Retriever puppy at a young age, they can thrive as house pets, coexisting with other pets and family members. Goldens are extremely friendly and are devoted to their family, which makes them the perfect choice for a house dog. Once you bring a Goldie home, it will be very difficult to find a more loving companion.

Do Golden Retrievers need training?

The Golden Retriever breed is highly intelligent which makes them easy to train. You can easily teach your Goldie basic obedience commands such as “sit” and “stay”. Since the Golden Retriever dog breed are highly intelligent, they can very well remember the names of different toys and can act on your command to go and retrieve them. Growing up, these dogs can be extremely high on energy and if you are the only one training your Golden Retriever puppy, it can get overwhelming for you if your dog is mischievous. If you ever feel like you need more help, feel free to reach out to a professional who can help you train your Golden.

Like with any other dog, positive reinforcement during training works like magic for a Golden Retriever. You can use treats and/or toys as rewards to make it understand good and bad behaviour. Reward your Golden Retriever with its favourite treats when it successfully obeys your commands. Start training your Golden Retriever puppy to avoid any unforeseen circumstances in terms of behaviour. You should also start socialising it as a puppy to ensure that it is welcoming to other members of the family.

How to care for Golden Retrievers?

Here’s how you can make sure that your Golden Retriever is receiving the care it deserves:

  • Health issues

    While this breed is considered to be a fairly healthy breed, its lifespan can vary depending on numerous factors such as physical activity, fitness levels, and diseases. A healthy Golden Retriever can also go on to live for 14 years, while some can succumb to common health issues. Pet parents should ensure that they take their Golden Retriever puppies for regular health check-ups from a young age to keep track of any sudden developments that can pose implications in their floof’s growth. Golden Retrievers are at risk of several health issues such as hip dysplasia, cancer, ear infections, skin infections, heart conditions, and more. Early signs of some health problems, like dog vomiting or diarrhea, can be easily missed by pet owners. By taking your Golden for regular health check-ups, you can diagnose any of these common diseases at an early stage and treat them before they turn fatal.

  • Grooming

    Goldens have a thick, water-repellent double coat that sheds moderately during the summer and winter, and heavily during the fall and spring seasons. Brushing your Golden Retriever daily is highly recommended so that you can prevent tangling and remove a decent amount of dead hair before it starts covering everything in your home. Brushing its water-repellent coat consistently will keep grooming relatively easy for you. Golden Retrievers also love to swim and play in the mud. You can just rinse your Golden off with clean water and make sure to dry its fur completely before you start brushing. You can bathe your Golden Retriever once a month and clean its ears specifically. Golden Retrievers have floppy ears that cover their ear canals, masking any visible infections from their parents.

  • Physical activity

    Staying active is extremely important for a Golden Retriever. The Golden Retriever dog breed was originally bred to hunt dogs, which is why their energy levels are extremely high. They need at least an hour of regular activity daily otherwise they can start throwing not-so-easy to handle tantrums. It is not necessary to take your Golden out for an entire hour at once; you can take it out multiple times during the day and ensure that you cover a minimum of 60 minutes. While Goldens enjoy playing and running around wide lawns, they can also thrive in small homes. If you’re living in a small home, play games like fetch with your floof, take it for daily walks and occasional swims, and let it enjoy off-leash time to help it stay active.

  • Nutritional requirements

    There is no specific diet plan for any dog breed, it all depends on a dog’s age and health condition. However, Golden Retrievers have a tendency to become overweight. For this reason, always make sure your floof is fed twice a day in moderate amounts and its food is measured. Don’t give your Golden too many treats throughout the day, pace it out and let them earn it. Golden Retrievers are prone to allergies that can lead to itchy skin and excessive licking. To prevent such accidents, consult a vet and rule out food items that you should not give your dog. Golden Retriever puppies should be taken to a vet at a young age to identify their food triggers so pet parents can steer clear from any unnecessary accidents.

A brief history of Golden Retrievers

Sir Dudley Marjoribanks, the first Lord Tweedmouth of the Scottish Highlands is responsible for breeding the first Golden Retriever. He started breeding different dog breeds in an attempt to create an energetic puppy who could retrieve things from both water and land. Golden Retrievers started arriving in the United States by the early 1900s and started gaining popularity. In fact, President Gerald Ford had his own Golden Retriever named Liberty!

You can find additional information about various breeds of dogs here!

Frequently asked questions

Yes, Golden Retrievers can get along well with other pets if they are socialised from a young age. Make sure you socialise your Golden Retriever puppy so that it learns how to co-exist with other animals and family members. 

Golden Retrievers are amazing family dogs and give their parents all their attention. They are easy to be around, playful, and protective of their family.  

Golden Retrievers can stay alone at home, but they should not be left alone for too long. They may start barking if left alone for too long.  

Golden Retrievers shed a lot, so be mentally prepared before you bring one home. Otherwise, they are easy to bathe (once every few weeks) and need regular ear cleaning and nail trimming sessions.  

Golden Retrievers love attention and will keep barking to get their parents to cuddle with them.  

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