Though they’re part of the retriever family, don’t let the name fool you — the Chesapeake Bay Retriever (or “Chessie”) is very different from a Golden or a Lab. If you’re looking for a dog that loves everyone and everything, then the latter are what you’re after. If you want a dog that’s intensely loyal, fun and hard working, read on.
Male: 65-80 lbs. Female: 55-70 lbs.
Chessies have plenty of energy, which means they need plenty of exercise. Long, daily walks are essential to help your Chesapeake Bay Retriever burn off some steam and avoid digging up your house. As natural water dogs, this breed will gladly welcome a dip in the pool or pond, whenever possible. If you have an active, outdoorsy family willing to spend several hours a day exercising a dog, this breed will fit in perfectly.
Although he has a fairly short coat, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever does shed quite a bit. Regular grooming with a rubber brush will help loosen excess fur so you won’t have hairballs flying everywhere.
Barking and Volume:
Though your Chessie is bursting with energy outdoors, inside he is quiet and calm. This dog would rather spend time having fun with his family than waking up the neighbors.
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is a strong-willed, assertive dog who needs to learn early on that you are the pack leader. Because the dog is highly intelligent, he may become bored with repetitive tasks, so it’s important to keep training fun. These dogs love to work, so if trained properly, they make for very skilled companions. Look into a basic puppy kindergarten/obedience class to teach your Chessie good manners and help him become socialized with other people and dogs.
Health Problems: Hip Dysplasia, hypothyroidism, eye problems and bloat. *A reputable breeder can help minimize the risk of genetic disorders.
Grooming Requirements: Regular, home grooming is sufficient.
Training Requirements: This breed will benefit greatly from puppy obedience classes and proper socialization, but is fairly easy to train.
No need for regular spa treatments with this low-maintenance breed. With his thick coat, the Chesapeake Bay Retriever will benefit from regular brushing sessions with a rubber brush (which is best for their oily coat), but don’t over-bathe your Chessie, or you’ll damage their naturally water-repellent coat.
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is extremely loving and patient with children by nature, making them an excellent addition to a growing family.
Friendliness: Towards Animals
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is generally friendly with other dogs, though he does have a protective instinct. Bred for hunting, Chessies have a natural desire to chase smaller animals in the wild but they can be amiable toward other household pets, if socialized early.
Friendliness: Towards People
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever is naturally protective of his family, which may be mistaken for an aggression towards strangers. As a Chessie parent, it is important to understand that, if properly socialized, your dog will easily warm up to family friends and display the same friendliness and affection that they show you.
BE PREPARED FOR: Lots of training and long walks in return for years of love, loyalty and outdoor fun.