Golden Retriever dogs are medium sized athletic dogs that are easy to train and well mannered. They are generally gentle and patient with children. So, families with small children can safely go for this dog breed. Plus, they generally do not bark much and hence do not invite complaints from the neighbors. Though, the neighbors might complain when your Golden Retriever might start jumping on them in excitement while welcoming them.
Golden Retriever is a popular family dog for most of the people. But these dogs also make for good guide dogs, hunting dogs, and are widely used in obedience competitions, search and rescue and detection of illegal drugs. This dog breed is believed to have originated from the cross breeding of a yellow colored Retriever and a Tweed Water Spaniel (now extinct).
These lovable dogs have broad heads, wide muzzles, and gentle brown eyes. Golden Retriever dogs are strong dogs and active dogs with symmetrical body. The tail is well fringed and always in a state of to and fro motion to due to the dog’s friendly disposition. American Golden Retriever has been found to be lankier and less stocky than a British one. Canadian Golden Retriever is supposed to be lighter in color as compared to the British type and darker than the American type.
Color: As the name suggests, Golden Retrievers are characterized by golden color. Though, the shade could vary from light golden to dark golden. Cream color is also acceptable. But, white markings are generally not permitted.
Height: Golden Retriever dogs generally grow to about 22 to 24 inches in height. The average height for females is around 20 to 22 inches.
Weight: On an average, weight ranging between 60 to 80 pounds is considered healthy for these dogs. As for female Golden Retriever dogs, the weight should be around 55 to 70 pounds.
Cancerous diseases like Lymphoma, Osteosarcoma, Hemangiosarcoma, and Mastocytoma are quite common in Golden Retriever dog breed. Other common diseases in these dogs are hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, joint diseases, Hemophilia, Hypothyroidism, seizure disorders and heart problems.
They are also prone to develop various eyes diseases like glaucoma, retinal dysplasia, corneal dystrophy, distichiasis, progressive retinal atrophy etc. Skin problems and allergies should also be guarded against. A typical Golden Retriever diet should focus on not over feeding the dog as these dogs can easily gain weight in due course of time.
Life Expectancy: The average lifespan of Golden Retrievers is around 10 to 12 years.
Litter size: Average litter size is 8 puppies
One of the most important Golden Retriever breed characteristics is that this breed of dogs is characterized by a dense and waterproof coat with smooth and wavy hair. The undercoat works as a water repellent and helps the dog stay warm even in extreme cold.
They are moderate to heavy shedders. They tend to shed throughout the year, especially during the spring season. Though, severe shedding leading to bald patches may indicate the presence of an underlying sickness or stress.
While brushing the coat, you should use firm stokes with the help of a bristle brush. Frequent grooming tends to control and lessen the amount of hair shed by them. Golden Retriever requires regular bathing on a weekly basis or once in every two weeks. Before bathing the dog, first brush his coat thoroughly because after the bathing the wet tangles can become tight and painful to remove.
Plus, invest in a good dog shampoo for bathing your dog as human shampoos tend to make the dog’s skin dry. Nail trimming should also be done on a regular basis. Also, their floppy ears also require frequent cleaning to avoid ear infections.
Golden Retriever breed description in terms of temperament is full of terms like intelligent, confident, alert, energetic, outgoing, calm, peaceful, loyal etc. They are always enthusiastic to please their owners and are hence can be easily trained. In fact, Golden retriever puppies learn tricks quite easily without harsh punishments.
They crave for human interaction and companionship. These charming and devoted dogs make for good watchdogs but can not be trusted much on account of their trusting nature. Due to their high level of sociability, they are good with kids and other pets. Aggressiveness is not a common feature in these dogs, unless in case of improper breeding.
Golden Retriever breed dogs love to play in water and retrieve objects. They can do fairly well in apartment situation, provided there is scope for physical activity like a medium to large sized securely fenced yard. They require daily brisk walks.
In the absence of physical activity or exercise, a Golden Retriever might become restless and anxious. Golden Retriever puppies under the age of 18 months require careful and moderate exercise to avoid the chances of joint damage.