Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever, an exuberant Scottish gundog of great beauty, stands among America’s most popular dog breeds.

Daily Care

Grooming Tips

Goldens heavilyshedtheir thick, water-repellent double coat once or twice a year, and they also shed more moderately on a continuous basis. Most of the time, a good brushing-out with a slicker brush once or twice a week will remove much of the dead hair before it has a chance to fall onto the furniture. During times of heavy shedding, these brushing sessions turn into daily affairs. Baths help to loosen the dead hairs, but the dog must be completely dry before brushing begins. Otherwise, Goldens only needoccasional bathsto keep them clean.
Check the ears on a weekly basis for signs of infection, irritation, or wax build up. Cleanse regularly with a veterinarian-approved cleanser and cotton ball. Brush the teeth at least once per week to prevent tartar buildup and fight gum disease. Additionally, nails should be trimmed once per month if the dog does not wear down the toenails naturally.

Exercise Tips

Golden Retrievers are active, lively dogs and they need to be given lots of regular exercise to remain fit and healthy. However, initially puppies should only be allowed to play in the garden, but they also need to be introduced to as many new people, other animals and situations as possible during the first few weeks and months of their lives. Once they have had all their shots, they can be taken out for short walks with 15 minutes being ample to keep them happy and fit.
Older dogs need to be given a good 2 hours exercise every day and this needs to include lots of mental stimulation in the form of interactive games. Golden Retrievers are highly intelligent and need to be kept busy both physically and mentally to be truly happy, well-rounded dogs. With this said, once back home these dogs are quite happy to chill out and relax with their owners liking nothing better than to curl up on the couch with them.

Feeding Tips

If you are getting a puppy, the breeder would let you know what type of food they have been on and would recommend you feed a new puppy the same diet, otherwise, they might get a tummy upset all due to a change in their diet. You can change the sort of food you feed a puppy slowly over a period of a few weeks to avoid this from happening. It’s important to feed a puppy food that has been specifically formulated for them because it contains all the right nutrients they need to develop and grow properly.
Older Golden Retrievers need to be fed a good quality, well-balanced diet to suit their ages being careful not to overfeed a dog or give them too many treats as rewards for being good. When training a Golden Retriever, it’s best to use healthy low-calorie treats and to limit the amount you give a dog to prevent them from putting on too much weight.
Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times. Like many large breeds, Saint Bernard can experience bloat, a life-threatening condition where the stomach distends and twists. The causes of bloat aren’t fully understood, but experts agree that multiple, small meals per day and preventing vigorous exercise around mealtimes may help reduce the chances of it happening.

Health Tips

The average life expectancy for the Golden Retriever is between 10 and 12 years. Goldens are generally healthy dogs, andresponsible breederswill screen their breeding stock for health conditions including elbow andhip dysplasia; eye conditions such as juvenile cataracts, pigmentary uveitis, and progressive retinal atrophy; and certain heart diseases, including subvalvular aortic stenosis. The Golden’s ears should be checked weekly for signs ofinfection, andthe teethshould be brushed often.


The Golden Retriever is a pleasure to train. This breed is easily trained and loves to learn new tricks. Golden Retrievers want to please its owner, so they will work hard at being obedient and loyal. Because Golden Retrievers are so active, you’ll want to use the training sessions to expend some of this energy.
Puppy training classes serve as part of the socialization process and help the owner learn to recognize and correct any bad habits that may be developing.Obedience trainingstrengthens the bond between dog and owner—a Golden wants nothing more than to please his human. Golden Retrievers are outgoing, loyal, and eager to do your bidding, which makes them very easy to train.


Originating in the Scottish Highlands in the late 1800s, the Golden Retriever was developed by Lord Tweedmouth, by crossing the original yellow Flat-Coated Retriever with the now extinct Tweed Water Spaniel. He later crossed in theBloodhound,Irish Setterand more Tweed Water Spaniel. The dogs were called the Golden Flat-Coat and only later were they given the name Golden Retriever.
The Golden Retriever is one of the most popular breeds known today, not only as family companions but for obedience competitions, hunting, and tracking, as a bird dog on both lands and in the water, narcotics detection, service dog for the disabled, a guide for the blind and as a therapy dog.
“Through several generations of clever breeding,” an admiring historian wrote, “Tweedmouth created a consistent line of exceptional working retrievers.” With a little more refinement after Tweedmouth’s time, the Golden Retriever came forth as an enduring gift to dogkind from a hunt-happy aristocrat.
The Golden was first seen at a British dog show in 1908, and good specimens of the breed began arriving in America, by way of Canada, at about the same time. Sport hunters appreciated the breed’s utility, show fanciers were enthralled by their beauty and dash, and all were impressed by the Golden’s sweet, sensible temperament.
The Golden was popular from the beginning of its American history, but the breed’s popularity really took off in the 1970s, the era of President Gerald Ford and his beautiful Golden named Liberty.