Are you thinking about buying a Golden Retriever puppy? They are a great family pet to have. I have had 3 over the past 20 years, and I think they are a great addition to a family. I have learned a few things after the first one to help make sure the next Golden Retriever puppies were more healthy than my first one. There are several things to consider when picking out that cute little “fur ball” other than how cute the are.
Where to Get Your Golden Retriever Puppy – Expected Paperwork
There are many places to chose from when getting a new Golden Retriever puppy. You can choose one from a professional breeder, a family that chose to breed their pet, or you can rescue one. Depending on what your expectations are with your pet will probably factor into who you choose.
If you decide you are going to go with a professional breeder, you are going to want to know the puppies’ pedigree and you also need the registration papers.
Pedigree – Purebred dog papers should include a pedigree, which is your dog’s family tree. It shows his bloodline going back four or more generations. It might also include titles the dog’s have won.
Registration Papers – This simply identifies the parents and other ancestors of the pup. This doesn’t guarantee the quality of the pup or mean that it is healthy and well-bred. If the mother and father are registered, their puppies are eligible for a registration certificate too. When you buy your purebred puppy, the breeder should give you a registration application that must be completed with the puppy’s registered name and signed by both you and the breeder. Mail it in with the processing fee and you’ll receive your puppy’s new registration certificate in a few weeks.
Health of Golden Retrievers
Purebreds, in general, many times have more health issues than mixed breeds. There are several that come to mind with Golden Retrievers, but asking some questions up front might help to avoid these issues for you.
- Hip Dysplasia – If your Golden ends up having this, it can get quite costly and can be painful for your dog. This can be screened for in your puppy before you purchase him, and most good breeders should have this done before puppies are going to their new home.
- Allergies – Golden Retrievers are susceptible to allergies. These can be quite serious. I had a Golden who would chew all the fur off his feet until all that was left were pink feet. We ended up going to a specialist and had to give him shots every 3 weeks because he was in such bad shape. Our next 2 Goldens didn’t have any allergies, but we asked before choosing them if the parents had allergies. They didn’t, and ours never did either.
- Ear Infections – They have long furry ears that result in poor air circulation. The best way to help prevent the infections is drying the ears after swimming and baths. There are also ear cleaning solutions that you can pick up almost anywhere you get pet supplies. Cleaning their ears regularly will help with fewer infections.
Main Purpose For Your Dog
There are many different reasons that you might want a Golden Retriever and many different uses for them.
- Show Dog or Agility Training – If this is the case, make sure to get additional information from the breeder on proven performance records and health clearances. Good ones will have pedigrees with overachieving parents.
- Hunting Companion – Golden Retrievers have great noses that make for great bird dogs.
- Search and Rescue/Police Dogs – Goldens are extremely intelligent and do very well in this field.
- Guide or Therapy Dogs – Because of their intelligence, loyalty, and love of their masters, they work very well helping people out who need their service.
- Family Pet – There is a reason that in the United States the Golden Retriever is the 3rd most popular dog. They make great family pets. They are loyal and great with kids. They always want to be around you and would rather you didn’t leave them behind. They become actual family members and not just a dog that no one pays attention to. They will always make sure you know they want to be included in everything you are doing.
10 Things You Need to Know About Golden Retrievers
- They have energy- They were originally bred as a sporting dog and because of this, they are naturally energetic. They need proper exercise and if unexercised, Goldens, with pent-up energy may develop behavioral problems or bad habits. They love long walks, jogging, hiking, fetch or chase games, and swimming. They are slow to mature and might act like pups into their senior years.
- They shed – In spring and fall there will be heavy shedding and light to moderate shedding all year long. Expect to have dog fur in your house at all times.
- Born to Fetch – They have a natural instinct to carry things in their mouth. You might notice when they get excited, they will run and get a toy, glove or any other item they can find to carry around.
- They Love Water – They will find any water hole available and lay in it or go swimming. It is great exercise for them and will help them stay cool in the warm months. They are even happy to lay in a kiddie pool.
- They Love Mud – If they can’t find water, they are equally happy to lay in a mud hole to cool off in and roll around.
- They Love Food – Goldens tend to overeat and can become overweight. You need to practice self-control and not always give into their cute sad eyes.
- Not Aware of Their Size – They seem to think they are lap dogs, and their enthusiasm and desire to always be close to their owners leaves them crowding your space often.
- They are Intelligent – They quickly learn commands, but that doesn’t mean they will be obedient. They need mental stimulation either in sports, games, and other things that challenge them.
- They are Not Watch Dogs – They are friendly by nature and more suited to be a welcoming committee when someone comes to your door. Generally they will have kisses and tail wagging for anyone who comes to your house.
- They are Family Members – They will become a loyal best friend who will be great with kids. They always want to be close, will follow you around or will be laying by your feet. They do better living indoors because they are such social dogs.
Golden Retrievers Are Great Dogs to Have
A Golden Retriever can have some health issues, but many can be researched ahead of choosing, so your chances are better for having a healthy Golden. They make great dogs in so many areas. Being a Golden Retriever owner for so many years has only made me love them more. They are great family members, and want to be accepted by all in the house. Each will have a different personality, but all of them are friendly, loving, loyal, and a great friend to have.
Please leave comments or questions below, or share stories about your Golden Retriever if you like.