The Golden Retriever is a medium-to-large size dog who requires a good bit of space indoors and out. Everything about the dog is big, including his hairy paws, which will track mud and dirt onto your floor. His happy wagging tail will sweep your prized glassware from low-standing table-tops. His natural curiosity will lead to rows of nose prints on the glass above your windowsills. Given a single opportunity, he will claim at least two couch cushions or your easy chair. The youngest and most beautiful of the retriever breeds, the Golden Retriever was originally developed as a waterfowl dog. Although still an admirable shooting dog, the Golden today spends more time romping with the family than in the duck blind or the field. Often considered the ideal dog to hunt over, compete with or just live with and hug a lot, the Golden has something to offer the sportsman, dog fancier or professional dog lover
Remember that your cute, fluffy puppy will grow into a large vigorous dog, who will need looking after for up to 15 years. Like a child, it depends on you to provide its nutrition, education and overall well-being. Consider the amount of time you can dedicate to your dog, the space available in your home, the cost of veterinary attention and most importantly, your dog’s essential food requirements – Goldens are among the dog world’s greatest eaters!
A HAPPY AND BOISTEROUS BREED
A BOUNCING “HALLO” – If Goldens are not trained early in life to keep all four feet on the ground, you and your friends can expect a very warm welcome from this friendly but sometimes clumsy breed. Choose a Golden only if you can accept such affection and the odd broken object caused by its wagging tail.
Goldens are natural retrievers who cannot resist picking up stray items, especially those with an interesting odour. Consider a Golden only if you are prepared to be extra tidy, or if you are amendable to having shoes, socks, and even under garments presented to both family and friends!
A NATURAL LOVE OF WATER
Although now a popular pet, Goldens were originally bred to work outdoors, retrieving in rivers and thick undergrowth. Therefore, no stream or dirty puddle can be passed without investigation, requiring you to clean your dog and your car on a regular basis.
A REWARDING COMPANION
If you want a good natured, sociable dog, then a Golden Retriever is ideal. Selective breeding has created this potential, but it is only through appropriate training that these desirable traits can be developed. The Golden Retriever is a lively dog that enjoys the exhilaration of outdoor activity as much as it does the relaxation of being at home. By nature, the Golden is generally placid and friendly seeking the company of other dogs or people for frivolous play. It is this affectionate, even temperament which draws most people to the breed, but if you require guarding services rather than companionship, choose another breed.
CARING FOR YOUR NEW PUPPY
Training should start as soon as you arrive home. Have one set of rules for all the family and stick to them. Puppies, like young children, need routine and firmly established ground rules. Goldens are good with children, but make sure your children are taught to be caring and responsible with dogs. A puppy is a living, breathing real-life creature, not a toy and should be treated with respect.
House Training - As a rule Goldens learn quite quickly and although at times it seems as though they will never be clean, most are by around four months. Puppies are not really capable of controlling bladder function much before this time, so anticipation and vigilance on your part is of prime importance. Dogs are creatures of habit and like to 'go' in the same place.
So as soon as you arrive home with your new pup carry him straight to the spot in the garden and stay with him until he has performed, then make a fuss of him, then he can go and explore his new home. The odd accident is an inevitable part of house training your puppy, so be prepared to experience it. Remember, prevention is better than cure! View accidents as a lack of vigilance on your part.
Times to watch are after a meal and a sleep. Take the puppy outside to his spot in the garden. The use of a key word like 'Hurry up,' helps. The actual words are irrelevant, it's the association of the act and repetition that matters. You can use any word that you wouldn't be embarrassed for the neighbors to overhear! An eight-week-old puppy can spend a penny for England, so be warned.
Article Written By:
Arnel Sauer of Mochavulin Golden Retrievers