The Kennel Club in the UK gave the Golden Retriever recognition as a specific breed back in 1908 as “Flat Coats” (not yet called Golden Retrievers) and, first shown at the Crystal Palace in London the UK The breed was officially called “Golden Retriever” 12 years later in 1920. They were then accepted officially by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1925.
In Part 1 of this blog, we mentioned that there are not only golden, dark golden and light golden retrievers, but that there are also three “international” variations, English, American and Canadian Golden Retrievers, all classified under the same breed.
How do you know which Golden Retriever variation you have?
The first thing to do is assess their build and colour. The English Golden Retriever tend to be stockier with a light golden to white colouration. While American and Canadian Golden Retrievers have much the same build, you will notice that American Retrievers have a somewhat thicker coat than Canadian Retrievers.
To get a good idea of what colour coat your Golden Retriever puppy will have when it fully matures, examine its ears. The very tip of the pup’s ears will usually present the final coat colour once the puppy loses its puppy coat. It’s as easy as that!
The great thing about Golden retrievers is that all three international variants have wonderful, happy temperaments. Golden Retrievers are well known for being playful, calm and of a wonderful friendly disposition, as well as clever, with the ability to learn quickly. What they do learn, they do with consistency and reliability, retaining their obedience, as they exhibit an eagerness to please.
As we mentioned in Part 1, they get along famously with people of all ages as well as with other family pets. Surprisingly, they don’t really often bark in the way some smaller, “yappy” breeds do, and while they will notice, for example, some unexpected noise, they are not renowned as guard dogs.
Did you know, some very famous people have owned Retrievers?
Presidents Ford and Reagan both had Golden Retrievers while at the White House, with President Reagan having no fewer than six. TV host and comedian Jimmy Fallon, actress Emma Stone, singer Adam Levine, and Oprah Winfrey are or have been owners.
Golden Retrievers are not just superb pets
Golden Retrievers also make great working dogs, both for the likes of search and rescue and well as working companion dogs for the less able, such as those with sight or mobility issues. Like many dogs, they have a wonderful sense of smell that can, with training, be tuned to specific tasks such as finding missing people or detecting contraband such as drugs, plant or food products. They were used with success in the relatively recent earthquake tragedy in Turkey as well as after the collapse of the towers during 9/11 and in the aftermath of hurricanes around the world.
What care does your Golden Retriever require?
Training: As with most dogs, training your Golden Retriever ideally needs to be started when a puppy so that good habits and obedience can be instilled from the earliest age. They will enjoy any training as they are so eager to please.
Exercise: Golden Retrievers do require regular exercise, but once they receive that, they can adapt to living anywhere, which includes inner city living.
Nutrition: All dogs should receive a healthy, balanced diet related to both their level of activity and their age. However, they do require a high-quality diet with the avoidance of being fed too many human scraps.
Grooming: A regular brushing down to remove any tangles, dirt and hair your pet might be shedding,, as well as a regular (but not excessive!) bath.
The vet: as for any dog, you must keep up to date with vaccinations, but for an active dog such as the Golden Retriever it is important they have regular check-ups to identify any potential health problems that this very happy dog might otherwise attempt to hide.
The dog itself: Most importantly, ensure your Golden Retriever comes from an accredited and ethical breeder such as http://www.goldenretrieversandfrenchbulldogs.com, where you can find more information.
Do not be fooled by cheery, happy-clappy announcements of dogs for sale via, for example, social media.