Golden Retriever

Lifespan: 10 - 13 years

Height: 22 - 24 inches

Weight: 55 - 75 pounds

Golden Retriever Traits
  • Jogging Partner

    Trait Rating: 3 of 5
  • Lap Dog

    Trait Rating: 1 of 5
  • Good with Children

    Trait Rating: 5 of 5
  • Warm Weather

    Trait Rating: 3 of 5
  • Cold Weather

    Trait Rating: 3 of 5
  • Grooming Requirements

    Trait Rating: 3 of 5
  • Shedding

    Trait Rating: 3 of 5
  • Barking

    Trait Rating: 2 of 5
  • Ease of Training

    Trait Rating: 5 of 5


  • Developed in England along the Tweed River in the middle 1800s.
  • Lord Tweedmouth wanted to create a dog with the strength to push through heavy cover, stamina to swim tirelessly, toughness to brave cold water, and gentleness to retrieve game unharmed.
  • The original Goldens, then considered to be a yellow variety of Flat-Coated Retrievers, were a mixture of Wavy-Coated Retriever, Tweed Water Spaniel, setters, black retrievers, and even a Bloodhound.
  • In England, the breed was originally recognized in 1903 as Flat Coats-Golden. In 1912 the name was changed to the Yellow or Golden Retriever.
  • Although they were in America by 1900, the AKC did not recognize them until 1927.
  • Goldens are among the most successful guide and assistance dogs. They also work in search and rescue.
  • U.S. President Gerald Ford owned a Golden named Liberty.
  • A Golden Retriever starred in the two Homeward Bound movies.
  • The Golden Retriever has been one of the most popular breeds in America for decades.

Golden Retriever Behavior Concerns

  • Makes a playful and trustworthy child's companion.
  • Eager to please, but can be overly exuberant.
  • A happy dog, not easily bothered by things.
  • Does best with reward-based training involving food or retrieving.
  • Its aptitude for learning, combined with its happy attitude and quick responses, make it one of the top breeds for obedience competition.
  • Outgoing toward strangers.
  • Gets along well with other pets and dogs.
  • Loves to retrieve, to the point of seeming compulsive.
  • Loves to swim.

Golden Retriever Suggested Exercises

  • Makes a calm housedog, but only if given adequate exercise.
  • Needs daily walks, jogs, hikes or play sessions.
  • Swimming and retrieving are favored methods of exercise.
  • Obedience training or other mental games are also important.
  • Goldens enjoy hunting, and many owners compete in field events with them.

Golden Retriever Grooming

  • Coat is straight or wavy, and dense. It is of medium to long length. Neutered or spayed individuals tend to have longer coats.
  • Color varies from very light cream to dark mahogany.
  • Brushing twice a week is adequate; more frequent brushing is necessary during shedding seasons.
  • Shedding is average to above average.

Suggested Golden Retriever Nutritional Needs

  • Goldens have a tendency to become overweight.
  • Adult dogs should be fed a balanced diet, with restricted calories if the dog starts to gain too much weight.
  • Puppies should be fed a large-breed growth food, which slows their growing rate, but not final size. This may decrease the incidence or severity of hip dysplasia in adults.

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