AKC Group: Sporting
Back in the late 1800s, Lord Tweedmouth developed the breed to be a skillful hunter and tracker as well as retriever of waterfowl. He also wanted a beautiful hunting partner. It is believed that he took a yellow dog and crossed it with a water spaniel (which are now extinct).
Size: 21.5 to 24 inches tall; 55 to 75 pounds
Color: Various shades of gold
Life span: 10 to 13 years
Health problems: Cataracts, entropion, allergies, thyroid issues, cancer, epilepsy, osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), hip dysplasia and von Willebrand’s Disease.
Currently sitting as the third most popular American breed (it has been the favorite breed numerous times), Golden Retrievers are stable, loving, gentle, eager to please dogs. They love to give and receive attention, making them wonderful family pets. A huge people dog, unless you have the time to devote to them, you should consider a more independent breed. They love to swim and play. Extremely sociable, the Golden Retriever has a huge love of life. They love all ages and stages of children, strangers and all other pet companions. If a Golden Retriever doesn’t like you, there’s obviously something wrong with YOU! He loves to eat, so you’ll need to be vigilant about his diet. They like to chew. You’ll need to provide him with an outlet to avoid him chewing something inappropriate. Highly intelligent and quick to learn, he makes training easy. Positive obedience, plenty of praise and the occasional treat will be all you need. A trusting nature, a natural obedience and his sweet nature combines to create a perfect family companion. (This is why Golden Retrievers are consistently found high on the list of the most popular breeds.)
Golden Retrievers are large, powerful dogs with a sweet face. His coat is soft to the touch. It can be flat or wavy and feathered. The Golden Retriever undercoat is weatherproof. He always wears a keen and eager expression. His coat needs to be brushed twice a week — more when he’s shedding seasonally. Trim any straggly hairs as needed. His bottom hair will need to be trimmed as needed for hygienic reasons. To reduce the chance of infections, check his ears. Golden Retrievers tend to be heavy shedders year round.
As a large dog, your Golden Retriever would benefit from obedience training. No matter what you decide to train him to do, it’s super easy to train him. Golden Retrievers have been used in police work to sniff out drugs, as service dogs for the blind and excel at agility tasks. This is a dog who can and will learn every trick you can teach him. Don’t forget to train him on the basics (sit, come, stay and heel) It will help you to manage him as he grows (like a weed) and make all future training even easier.