Golden Retriever History
The Golden Retriever breed of dog was first developed in Scotland, though were not officially known as “Golden Retrievers” until 1920. The breed was first developed as a gun-dog, being bred to aid hunters in retrieving downed waterfowl. The original Golden Retriever breed was created with a cross of a yellow-colored Retriever with a Tweed Water Spaniel (a now extinct breed). In 1868, this cross produced four pups which were the foundation of the Golden Retriever breed. Other crosses that were implemented in the creation of the Golden Retriever were the St. John’s Water Dog (now known as the Labrador Retriever), the Irish Setter, the Bloodhound and two types of wavy-coated black Retriever dogs. Eventually, the breed was corrected, and the genetic line was stabilized into the Golden Retriever that we know today.
Golden Retriever Appearance
In general, the Golden Retriever has a few small differences between the appearance of the American, Canadian and British breeds. However, a Golden Retriever is typically a large dog, weighing from 55 to 75 lbs. Golden Retrievers have a generally athletic build, though can appear to be stockier or less athletic depending on heritage. As suggested by their name, the Golden Retriever can come in any color variation classified in the “Golden” line of color. This ranges from an ivory cream to a deep russet mahogany.
Golden Retriever Temperament
The Golden Retriever is generally classified as being friendly, affectionate and kind. They tend to be very personable, being friendly even with strangers. Though they do not make a good guard dog, they are widely accepted as being of a very gentle disposition. This is one of the main reasons why they are such a popular dog among families with small children. In general, the Golden Retriever is very calm, with any behavioral abnormalities (aggression, hostility, depression) being viewed as a serious fault in the breed. Golden Retrievers are very eager to please their owners, and are said to be one of the most loyal dog breeds.
Golden Retriever Grooming
Since the Golden Retriever has a double-layered coat, they do tend to be in the moderate shedding category. However, grooming a Golden Retriever is fairly simple, and will greatly reduce the amount of shedding. It’s best to purchase a dog care bristle brush, which is usually available in the pet care section of most pet supply stores. Bathing a Golden Retriever can be done at least once per month. Since Golden Retrievers have floppy ears, they are prone to ear infections. Because of this, their ears should be cleaned on a regular basis.
Golden Retriever Training
Training a Golden Retriever is usually fairly easy, due to the breed’s loyalty and eagerness to please their owner. Since the Golden Retriever is very affectionate, positive reinforcement training is usually the most effective type of training program to use. Golden Retrievers will thrive on a training program that utilizes both praise and food-based treat rewards for good behavior. When properly trained, most Golden Retrievers are obedient, without any visible tendencies to misbehave.