Facts About Golden Retrievers: History. Care, Grooming, and Feeding

Golden Retriever is a lovable dog breed. With their history traced back to Scotland, these canines were initially developed for sporting purposes.

The Scottish medium-large gun dogs are excellent workers in hunting and shooting games. Moreover, being a beautiful and loving dog breed, Golden Retrievers are among the most popular breeds used as family pets.

Golden Retriever is an intelligent breed, easy to train, eager to please, and loves to work. Therefore, they are used as guide dogs for the blind, hearing dogs for the deaf, competitors in dog events and rescue, and search dogs.

History of Golden Retrievers

Dudley Marjoribanks is credited as the first developer of the Golden Retriever in Guisachan, Scotland, in the 1800s. He first bred Nous-a yellow wavy-coated retriever with Belle-a Tweed Water Spaniel.

Consequently, the yellow puppies born became the footing of the breeding process to develop the Golden Retriever we know of today. Like many people of his time, Dudley was interested in improving the qualities of livestock and dogs through breeding.

Therefore, he was interested in a breed that could cope well in the Scottish climate, suit the country's terrain, and become good hunting dogs, especially in retrieving game.

Moreover, the increase in firearms such as guns resulted in more shooting games where the dog retrievers at the time were inefficient because game shots would fall both in water and land.

In the United Kingdom, Golden Retrievers got their first official recognition by The Kennel Club in 1911.

In the US and Canada, the breed had been introduced in the regions some years before the American Kennel Club officially recognized them in 1932 and the Canadian Kennel Club in 1925, respectively.

Facts About Golden Retriever

  • Golden Retrievers are classified under the sporting dog breeds group.
  • They are medium to large-sized dogs with a solid and athletic body.
  • This breed has a life span of 10 to 12 years.
  • Golden Retrievers can typically weigh around 55 to 70 pounds.
  • The breed’s height measures averagely 21 to 24 inches tall.
  • They are double-coated with a dense, wavy, and water-repellent outer coat and a thick undercoat.
  • Golden Retrievers' coat is golden or yellow with various shades.
  • Golden Retrievers are heavy shedders.
  • They possess a soft mouth that helped them retrieve shot game intact, during shooting games.

Personality of Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers are sweet, gentle, and people-oriented. They yearn for affection from people around them and love to stay close. As a result, they are good candidates for guide dogs, rescue dogs, and lifesavers.

Besides, owing to their friendly nature, Golden Retrievers make excellent family dogs. What’s more, they are playful dogs hence great companions for kids.  

However, Golden Retrievers make poor guard dogs, for they will get along well with strangers as they search for affection.

Golden Retrievers' people-pleasing nature makes them eager to train; they respond well to obedience and command training, especially when they are young.

From their initial purpose for development, Golden Retrievers are energetic and agile dogs thus excel in competitive events.

How to Care for a Golden Retriever

Like most breeds, it calls for patience and time to train a Golden Retriever. However, eventually, they will respond to obedience and commands, for that is what they are determined to do.

Training should start when the dog is young and advance as he grows. Golden Retrievers learn more quickly with the application of praise and positive reinforcement.

Significantly, avoid showing anger during training.

Developed to work as retrievers, this dog breed loves to be active. Therefore, it is advisable to keep the dog occupied mostly through exercises. Engage the dog in activities such as walking, hiking, swimming, running, and fetching at least an hour a day.

Additionally, Retriever still holds his traditional stable temperament; therefore, hunting and dog events will make him healthier and more excited.

Moreover, Golden retrievers crave affection; they love to be with their owners.

When left alone for long, the Retriever not only gets bored but also likely to come up with ways to entertain himself. As a result, he is likely to develop bad habits such as biting and digging.

Be sure to socialize the Golden Retriever properly with the kids, neighbors, friends, and other animals right from puppyhood. It saves the dog from developing aggressiveness.

Ensure proper feeding, frequent grooming, and good health care for this breed.

Grooming a Golden Retriever

Just as many dogs, Golden Retrievers shed, and it increases, particularly with the change of seasons. Therefore, to contain the shedding, regular brushing is explicitly needed daily.

This double-coated breed requires regular bathing, which is as frequent as once a week. To maintain a dog's healthy skin and coat, proper drying after swimming and bathing is essential.

It is imperative to regularly clean the dog's ears and keep them dry especially after swimming to prevent infections.

Finally is the primary care for the Golden Retrievers to trim their nails if need be and brush the dog's teeth, to keep them healthy as well as enjoy fresh breath.

How to Feed Golden Retriever

To maintain your Retriever’s optimum health, it is necessary to feed them with high-quality dog food. It is crucial to consider suitable dog food for optimal growth. Importantly, you should consider the dog's age and level of activities for proper feeding.

Remember, Golden Retrievers love to eat. Therefore, they are susceptible to excessive weight gain due to overfeeding.  

Excess weight puts the dog into the risk of developing health problems such as heart and kidney issues. Therefore, always consult with your veterinarian on appropriate feeding schedules for your Retriever.

Health Concerns for Golden Retrievers

Although various health conditions affect Golden Retrievers, the probability of a retriever suffering from any of the health problems is individualistic.

Golden retrievers are prone to elbow deformities- an inherited condition and hip dysplasia- a genetic painful hip deformity.

Also cataracts-an eye problem mostly in senior dogs, heart problems specifically sub-aortic stenosis, and cancer-mostly skin and bone cancer.

Other health concerns for this breed include allergies, ear infections, hypothyroidism, obesity, and skin infections.

Alongside regular veterinary checkups, it is essential to be preventive to the Golden Retriever by all means including proper feeding and care to raise a healthy dog.

Are Golden Retrievers Good With Kids?

Golden Retrievers are playful, gentle, even-tempered, and affectionate hence get along well with kids. Also, with their friendly nature, they tend to get along well with the kids' friends or the neighbors' kids.

However, socialization of these kids with the dog is crucial before they can be allowed to spend time together.

Also, if a Golden Retriever is chosen as a family dog, it is essential to supervise the kids when they spend time with the dog.

Initially, it is significant to adequately train the dog on how to handle kids. Conversely, teach the kids on how to treat the dog with respect.

With proper training, you can be sure both the kids and the pup will play together and make excellent companions.

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