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Golden Retriever

Golden Retriever

Other Names: Goldens
Country of Origin: Great Britain
Dog Group: Gundog

Originback to top back to top

The Golden dates back to the latter half of the 19th century and owes much of its development to Sir Dudley Marjoribanks (Lord Tweedmouth). His records were meticulously kept and form a good basis of origins. Marjoribanks took a liking to the yellow colour and acquired a dog called 'Nous' of that colour from Brighton, England in 1865 and used him on a Tweedwater Spaniel bitch, which was an English retrieving dog, close & curly-coated and a light liver colour. These are now extinct. Through structured line breeding over a period of 20 years, and bringing in Labrador Retrievers, Red Setters and possibly a Bloodhound or two to improve scenting and add bone, the Golden was developed and in 1908 became registered and shown as Golden Flatcoats until 1913 when the listing was changed to Golden or Yellow Retrievers until, finally in 1920, they took the name they bear today.

Descriptionback to top back to top

This breed is known for its lustrous, golden coat of resilient quality and medium length. The Golden Retriever has a friendly and intelligent expression with perfect symmetry and superb, flowing movement covering the ground with long, powerful strides.

Size Large
Colour The coat of the Golden Retriever can be any shade of cream or gold. Red and mahogany is also seen.
Coat Length Medium Long
Age Expectancy They normally live to 12 years, although it is not unheard of for a Golden to live until the age of 16 or 17.
Weight/Height Range Dogs' height at withers is normally between 56 - 61cms and bitches' between 51 - 56cms. The weight for dogs is normally between 30 - 34kgs and bitches 27 - 32kgs.

If you choose your puppy from parents which have both been hip-scored and eye-screened with favourable results, the likelihood of your Golden being susceptible to the hips and eye problems is then greatly reduced. As puppies, without careful exercise management, they can be prone to OCD. In general, Goldens are a healthy breed.

Common ailments: Bones (Acquired) - Tumours, Bones (Developmental) - Hip dysplasia, Bones (Developmental) - OCD, Brain (Acquired) - Seizure (fit, epileptic fit) - Degeneration, Endocrine - Diabetes mellitus (diabetes), Endocrine - Hypothyroidism, Eye - Cataract - Hereditary, Eye - Ectropion, Eye - Entropion, Eye - Progressive retinal atrophy PRA, Eye - Trichiasis, Haemolymphatic - Bleeding disorders - Von Williebrands disease, Haemolymphatic - Leukaemia
Breed Classification The Golden Retriever is a very popular Gundog breed and is employed today for its compatibility in companionship, showmanship, obedience and field trials. The breed performs as well in water, due to its dense undercoat, and over land because of its long, powerful strides. These dogs are also used as seeing eye dogs and for therapy.

Feeding & Ownershipback to top back to top

The Golden is one of the easiest dogs to feed, being neither fussy nor prone to stomach upsets. However, they are a greedy breed and care must be given to ensure owners guard against excessive feeding in an effort to keep the dogs lean and healthy.

Food Cost $15 to $20
Other Expenses These dogs are relatively inexpensive to keep as they do not require any food additives on a regular basis. Good trimming scissors are a sound investment but with proper care will last a good few years.

Personalityback to top back to top

The Golden is a gentle dog with intelligence and a level disposition and because of this is an ideal dog to have as part of the family. They adore children and love to be involved in all family matters, whether indoors or outdoors. They are foremost a retriever and are therefore very orally fixated. Goldens will attempt to drag, pull or carry anything they can fit into their mouths. They also love water and care should be taken to ensure their safety when any form of water is nearby. Goldens are however worriers and great care should be taken during training, ensuring sensitivity is maintained at all times.

Intelligence Goldens are extremely intelligent dogs with an intense desire to please. Therefore they make superb candidates for fieldwork, showing, obedience, companionship and assistance for the disabled. Never treat them harshly or harm can be done to their accommodating and sensitive natures.
Energy Medium
Suitability for Children High
Tendency to Bark Medium
Overall Exercise Requirement Adult Goldens require a reasonable amount of exercise to keep them in peak condition and road work is ideal to keep them well-muscled and fit. As puppies, they can grow very quickly and their weight can soon be too heavy for the speed of which their bones are growing. For this reason do not allow them too much free-range exercise which could cause Osteochondritis Dissecans (OCD), a bone problem causing lameness.
Suitability as a Guard Dog Low
Ease of Transportation High
Level of Aggression Low
Other Animal Compatibility High

Groomingback to top back to top

Because of the density of the coat, Goldens must be regularly groomed and trimmed. The undercoat, because of its water repellant nature, is extremely thick and must therefore not be allowed to matt, causing unnecessary suffering to the animal. The feathers on his front legs should be trimmed regularly as should the hair between his pads. The hair on the back legs up the hocks needs to be cut close and, again, the feathering under the tail should be trimmed. The tail should be trimmed in a crescent shape. The chest area should be kept relatively short in order to show off the length of neck. The top coat on the body only needs brushing and can be either flat or wavy. Whilst the length of the coat attracts water and mud, this is easily cleaned off once the coat has dried.

Grooming Requirements More than once a week
Trimming Required Frequent
Amount of hair shed Heavy
Avg. 4.7 / Ratings: 125

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