The Golden Retriever is one of the most popular breeds among dog owners. This breed is naturally good-natured, easy to train and makes a wonderful addition to most families. Due to its popularity, Goldens have been prone to over-breeding so, if buying from a breeder, it is essential that you do your homework. Also, consider the many Golden Retriever rescue organizations where great Goldens eagerly await loving families.

Size:
Male: 65-75 lbs. Female: 55-65 lbs.

Exercise Requirements:
As a sporting breed, Golden Retrievers need plenty of exercise. Walks are a good start but you’ll need to up your game with this breed. Daily runs at the park are great and throwing tennis balls with a launcher is ideal. (They love to retrieve — it’s all in the name). Exercise is extremely important for Goldens, because the breed is prone to obesity.

Warning: Be careful when exercising your Golden puppy. When they are under 18-months old, vigorous exercise can result in damaged joints.

Mess Factor:
Expect and prepare for doggie hair to infiltrate your furniture and clothing. Goldens shed all year round and twice a year they have periods of “super shedding.” Brushing them regularly can be helpful to reduce the amount of hair around the house.

Barking and Volume:
Like all dogs, Goldens will bark once in a while but frequent woofing is not an issue with this breed.

Training Requirements:
Golden Retrievers are extremely intelligent and eager to please and so they tend to be obedient and easy to train through positive reinforcement. Goldens are often used as guide dogs — a testament to their trainability. They need adequate mental stimulation to prevent boredom. If your Golden is going to be a family dog, a basic puppy class should be enough to take you through. The early investment can prevent behavior issues in the future.

Ongoing Costs:
Health Factors: The breed is susceptible to hip and elbow dysplasia, cataracts, obesity, cancer, heart disease and skin problems.
* A responsible breeder can minimize the risk of genetic disorders.
Grooming: Home grooming is adequate.
Training:
 Basic training. A puppy class will do.

Grooming Requirements:
In general, weekly brushing and the occasional bath will suffice. Twice a year, when the dogs go through a “super shed” period, daily brushing is recommended.

Kid Compatibility:
Golden Retrievers make great family dogs. They are recognized for their patience with children and have a calm and gentle nature.

Longevity:
12 years.

Approachability & Sociability: Towards Animals
Hostility towards other animals is not in keeping with the Golden Retriever’s character. In fact, retrievers have even been used as surrogate mothers for orphan kittens or zoo animals. Other pets are welcome.

Approachability & Affection: Towards People
Golden Retrievers are extremely friendly and it’s uncharacteristic for them to show aggressiveness towards people. They are not monogamous and enjoy interacting with their family as well as strangers. Goldens are extremely social “people dogs.” They require (and will provide you with) lots of affection. They can become depressed or mischievous if left alone too long.

BE PREPARED FOR:
Lots of hair all over your apartment and a sweet and loving face to come home to.

Quote from a Wooftown Dog Parent:
“My golden is an ambassador of wholesome goodness. Her friendly nature and unconditional approachability provides me with a daily reminder of how I should strive to be as a person.” -Jon

Links and resources:
Clubs
Golden Retriever Club of America GRCA

Rescues
US National Golden Retriever Rescue from GRCA

Video
Golden puppy falling asleep

Most large cities have their own rescue organizations for the breed. Search “YOUR CITY” Golden Retriever Rescue

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