Author: Johnny Bonds
Are you considering getting a Golden Retriever (GR) as your next pet? These dogs are consistently popular, but for a good reason. In this post, we review the golden retriever’s appearance, behavior, health concerns, nutrition needs, grooming guidelines, and more!
- Breed name: Golden Retriever
- Origin: United Kingdom, Scotland, England
- Classification: Gun dog
- Color: shades of gold, cream, and red
- Life expectancy: 10 – 12 years
- Size: large
- Height: Male: 56–61 cm, Female: 51–56 cm
- Weight: Male: 30–34 kg, Female: 25–32 kg,
- Personality: friendly and intelligent
- Family-friendly: yes, however they require early socializing and training
Golden Retriever Background and Physical Appearance
The GR is a famous dog breed known for its calm and friendly demeanor. As a result, they’re perfect for active families with young children.
Golden Retrievers originate from the United Kingdom and were bred to hunt waterfowl. Thus, they like swimming and splashing around in the water.
In terms of physical appearance, the golden is a large dog with floppy ears, a long muzzle, and medium-length fur. Their flowing coat is usually water-resistant and comes in multiple shades of golden, light cream, and red tones.
Behavior and Temperament
The Golden’s desire to please is nearly legendary. Because of their natural intelligence and outgoing nature, the Golden retrievers are easy to spend time with. They maintain a puppy-like spirit well into adulthood, long after other breeds have lost their puppy enthusiasm. Above all, they are friendly and not overprotective; thus, they make the perfect family pets.
Training and Exercising
GRs love a physical and mental challenge. As a result, they are easy to train and can do incredibly well in dog shows. Moreover, golden retrievers make great therapy and service dogs.
That said; the retriever breed is sensitive to harsh training. For that reason, always show patience when training them.
Living with a Golden Retriever
GRs can live joyfully in a small home, provided that they have access to a decent backyard. In addition, they shouldn’t be left alone for lengthy periods.
As we mentioned earlier, golden retrievers were initially used in waterfowl hunting. Thus, naturally, they love to swim. Always keep your pool gates locked, so your GR doesn’t have an unsupervised swim!
Golden Retriever Health
GRs are a hardy breed and can live up to the age of 12. However, the following health concerns are worth keeping an eye out for:
- Eye problems such as progressive retinal atrophy
- Hip and Elbow dysplasia
- Subarterial Aortic Stenosis
Spaying or Neutering a Golden Retriever
Neutering and spaying refer to the surgical procedures meant to sterilize your pup. Knowing when to neuter or spay your GR can be pretty tricky.
In the past, the rule of thumb was to get your male golden neutered before they reach six months. But, things have changed, and more new research has come to light.
Dr. Benjamin L. Hart, a professor at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, advises pet owners to wait until a male GR is one year old to fix them. This will give them ample time to develop. If you fix them before this time, it might harm their joint development.
What about female golden retrievers? Their sexual hormones play a significant role in supporting their healthy development. When they are spayed, they no longer release these hormones.
Therefore, some researchers and vets recommend that you don’t fix female GRs at all. However, if it’s not possible to leave your female golden intact, Dr. Hart again advises that you wait for at least 12 months before spaying them.
Nutrition and Feeding
A high-quality dog food right for the dog’s age (adult, puppy, or senior) will contain all the nutrients the breed needs. It is worth noting, though, that some golden retrievers can become overweight. So, always be wary of your dog’s calorie consumption.
If you opt to give your GR treats, do so in moderation. Also, avoid cooked bones and dishes with high-fat content. You wouldn’t want your pup to become obese. Would you?
The double-layered coats of golden retrievers are prone to shedding. As a result, brushing your dog a few times a week is recommended. Additionally, the feathery fur around their legs, tail, and belly should be trimmed occasionally.
Conveniently, their coat secretes natural oils that help to keep it smooth and detangled. As such, only bathe your GR once a few months.
That’s it. If you need a canine friend who gets along with everyone, including children, a golden retriever could be the perfect choice for you.
As you have already read, GRs are outgoing in nature and will happily join you on beach outings, bike rides, and hiking trips. If you wish to take part in dog competitions, your golden will joyfully compete in many canine sports, including dock diving, obedience, and agility.
Hope this Golden Retriever breed information will come in handy when you plan to get a new canine companion.