Everyone loves Golden Retriever puppies, but did you know they’re also a very unique breed of dog? Not only are they sweet and loveable, but they’re also super-smart. They have special personality traits that make them ideal for a wide variety of different owners and the perfect canine for many important jobs.
From families with children to sports hunters and even the elderly, Golden Retrievers are wonderful dogs for just about everyone. Check out these ten fun facts about Golden Retriever puppies, and you just might decide that they’re the perfect breed for you as well!
1. There are 3 Different Types of Golden Retrievers
Many people aren’t aware that there are actually three different types of Golden Retrievers: American, English, and Canadian. English Golden Retrievers tend to have a stockier build than their American and Canadian counterparts while Canadian Golden Retrievers often have a thinner coat than the other two types.
Their coats also come in three different colors: golden, light golden, and dark golden. A Golden Retriever puppy won’t look the same when he grows up, his coat will actually darken as he ages. To get an idea of the color his coat will be as an adult, take a look at the tip of his ears.
2. They’re the 3rd Most Popular Breed in America
Golden Retrievers consistently fall within the top three most popular dog breeds in the United States, right behind Labrador Retrievers and German Shepherds. This isn’t surprising, considering that there are so many things to love about them!
3. They’re Extremely Attached to Their Owners
Golden Retrievers are pack animals who love spending time with their people. They do best when they’re in a home where they’ll get lots of love and attention. Whether they’re playing in the dog park, practicing their training, or just snuggling on the couch, they’re happy as long as they’re with you.
They can get distressed if left alone for too long and can sometimes even suffer from separation anxiety. Pet owners who are away from home a lot might want to consider a different type of breed.
4. They’re Super Smart and Easy to Train
Golden Retrievers are ranked the fourth most intelligent dog breed in the world. They’re also very eager to please, making them extremely easy to train. They do best with positive reinforcement training methods and very rarely need to be scolded or punished. They’re also very food-motivated and love playing games.
Since they’re so easy to train, have a great temperament, and an excellent sense of smell, they’re often used for a variety of important jobs like:
- Drug detection
- Guidance for the blind
- Mobility assistance
- Hearing assistance for the deaf
- Search and rescue
- Medical alert
Their intelligence and easygoing nature also make them a very popular addition to movies, commercials, and televisions shows. Some of the most famous Golden Retrievers include “Duke,” the spokes-dog for Bush’s Baked Beans, “Shadow” from the movie Homeward Bound and “Buddy” from the movie Air Bud.
5. They Make Great Therapy Dogs
Therapy dogs are used in all kinds of situations to help improve people’s feelings of well-being. They bring comfort to people who otherwise wouldn’t have reassuring physical contact and help them cope with challenging situations. It takes a special type of dog to be a good therapy dog, and Golden Retrievers have all of the right personality traits.
Golden retrievers have been used to help children and adults in hospitals, the elderly in nursing homes, and people held in jails and prisons. They’re excellent at helping children with autism or anxiety disorders, Alzheimer’s patients, patients who need physical therapy, and people with difficulty speaking and communicating.
6. They’re Very Athletic and Love to Swim
Golden Retrievers were originally bred to be gun dogs and hunting dogs, particularly for retrieving fowl like ducks or geese after they land in the water. Today, they still make excellent hunting companions and are often used to retrieve pheasants and rabbits. Not into hunting? No problem! A Golden Retriever is just as happy playing endless rounds of fetch in the back yard.
This breed loves to swim and is well-equipped, thanks to their webbed feet and two layers of fur, an inner layer to keep them warm and an outer layer that’s waterproof. Your Golden Retriever will love swimming any time it can, whether it’s lounging in the pool with you or splashing in the local lake, stream, or river.
7. They Make Great Watch Dogs (But Not Great Guard Dogs)
With their sweet and friendly nature, Golden Retrievers generally aren’t considered the best guard dogs. However, their intelligence, loyalty, and obedience mean they’ll keep a close watch over their home and family. They will often bark loudly to warn of approaching strangers, but once they arrive, are more likely to greet them with a wag and a smile than with a growl.
8. They’re Generally a Healthy Breed with a Long Life Span
The average life span of a Golden Retriever is 10 to 14 years, so you can expect them to be by your side for a long time! To keep your Golden Retriever happy and healthy throughout his lifetime, you’ll want to make sure he gets plenty of exercise, eats a well-balanced diet, and sees the vet for a check-up at least once a year. Take these simple steps, and your Golden Retriever puppy will reward you with a lifetime of love and happiness.
9. They’re a Popular Pet Among the Rich and Famous
Presidents Gerald Ford had a Golden Retriever named Liberty who lived in the White House with him. President Ronald Regan also had a Golden Retriever named Victory who lived on his horse ranch with his five other dogs.
Golden Retrievers are also popular among celebrities. Just a few of their most famous Golden Retriever owners include Oprah, Jimmy Fallon, Jennifer Aniston, Adam Levine, Ryan Reynolds, Emma Stone, Conan O’Brien, Betty White, and Miranda Lambert.
10. They’re an Excellent Family Dog
Last, but not least, Golden Retrievers make excellent family dogs. They’re docile, patient, playful, and even-tempered, making them the ideal companion for children of all ages. They’re also good with other family pets and are generally accepting of strangers. Cheerful, trustworthy, and forgiving, Golden Retrievers make great pets for both experienced dog owners and complete novices.
When they’re indoors they can almost always be found at their owner’s feet or by their side. However, once they get outside, they love to run, frolic, and play all day. Golden Retrievers tend to “go with the flow,” so they’ll be happy hanging out in the house, going for rides in the car, taking long hikes, or spending the day swimming and splashing.