Golden Retriever


Origin      Scotland
Weight Male      65–75 lb (29–34 kg)
Female       55–65 lb (25–29 kg)
Height Male       22–24 in (56–61 cm)
Female      20-22 in (51-56 cm)[2]
Coat straight or moderately wavy
Life span average 10-12 years
FCI Group 8, Section 1 Retrievers #111 standard
AKC Sporting standard
ANKC Group 3 (Gun dogs) standard
CKC Group 1 – Sporting dogs standard
KC (UK) Sporting dog standard
UKC Sporting and fishing

The Golden Retriever is a large-sized breed of dog bred as gun dogs to retrieve shot waterfowl such as ducks and upland game birds during hunting and shooting parties,vand were named 'retriever' because of their ability to retrieve shot game undamaged. Golden Retrievers have an instinctive love of water, and are easy to train to basic or advanced obedience standards. They are a long-coated breed, with a dense inner coat that provides them with adequate warmth in the outdoors, and an outer coat that lies flat against their bodies and repels water. Golden Retrievers are well suited to residency in suburban or country environments. Although they need substantial outdoor exercise, they should be housed in a fenced area because of their instinctual tendency to roam. They shed copiously, particularly at the change of seasons, and require fairly regular grooming.

The breed is a prominent participant in conformation shows for purebred dogs. The Golden Retriever is popular as a disability assistance dog such as being a guide dog for the blind and a hearing dog for the deaf. In addition, they are trained to be a hunting dog, a detection dog, and a search and rescue participant. The breed's friendly, gentle temperament means it is unsuited to being a professional guard dog, but its temperament has also made it the third-most popular family dog breed (by registration) in the United States, the fifth-most popular in Brazil and Australia, and the eighth-most popular in the United Kingdom. Golden Retrievers are rarely choosy eaters, but require ample exercise (of two or more hours a day). The breed is fond of play but also highly trainable.

Temperament

The temperament of the Golden Retriever is a hallmark of the breed, and is described in the standard as "kindly, friendly and confident". Golden Retrievers make good family pets, particularly as they are patient with children. They are not "one-man dogs" and are generally equally amiable with both strangers and those familiar to them. Their trusting, gentle disposition makes them a poor guard dog. Any form of unprovoked aggression or hostility towards either people, dogs or other animals, whether in the show ring or community, is considered unacceptable in a Golden Retriever and is not in keeping with the character of the breed, nor should a Golden Retriever be unduly timid or nervous. The typical Golden Retriever is calm, naturally intelligent and biddable, and with an exceptional eagerness to please.

Golden Retrievers are also noted for their intelligence. The breed ranks fourth in Stanley Coren's The Intelligence of Dogs – following the Border Collie, Poodle, and German Shepherd – as one of the brightest dogs ranked by obedience-command trainability.

Typical Golden Retrievers are active and fun-loving animals with the exceptionally patient demeanour befitting a dog bred to sit quietly for hours in a hunting blind. Adult Goldens love to work, and have a keen ability to focus on a given task. They will work until they collapse, so care should be taken to avoid overworking them.

Other characteristics related to their hunting heritage are a size suited for scrambling in and out of boats and an inordinate love for water. Golden Retrievers are exceptionally trainable—due to their intelligence, athleticism and desire to please their handlers—and excel in obedience trials. They are also very competitive in agility and other performance events. Harsh training methods are unnecessary, as Golden Retrievers often respond very well to positive and upbeat training styles.

Golden Retrievers are compatible with other dogs, cats, and most livestock. They are particularly valued for their high level of sociability towards people, calmness, and willingness to learn. Because of this, they are commonly used as guide dogs, mobility assistance dogs, and search and rescue dogs.

Health

The average lifespan for a Golden Retriever is about 11 to 12 years. They are susceptible to specific ailments, so should be taken to a veterinarian for yearly checkups.

Golden Retrievers are known to have genetic disorders and other diseases. Hip dysplasia is common in the breed; when buying a puppy, the pedigree should be known and be examined by the OFA or by PennHIP for hip disease. Obesity is also common in the breed because Golden Retrievers love to eat. Puppies should eat about three cups of food a day and adults three to five cups, depending on the food and how active the dog is.

Cancer, the most common being hemangiosarcoma, followed by lymphosarcoma, mast cell tumour, and osteosarcoma, was the cause of death for 61.4% of American Goldens according to a 1998 health study conducted by the Golden Retriever Club of America, making it the breed's biggest killer. A 2004 survey by the UK Kennel Club puts this number at 38.8%. Although most puppies are screened for the disorders before being sold (by reputable breeders), hip and elbow dysplasia afflict one-fifth of dogs. Eye diseases are also possible in the breed; cataracts are the most common eye disease, but they can also be afflicted with progressive retinal atrophy, glaucoma, distichiasis, entropion, corneal dystrophy, and retinal dysplasia.

They may suffer from heart disease, especially subvalvular aortic stenosis, and cardiomyopathy and joint diseases, including patella luxation, osteochondritis, panosteitis, and cruciate ligament rupture. In addition to the heavy shedding they experience (and their constant lighter shedding throughout the year), Golden Retrievers can suffer from skin diseases; the most prevalent skin problem is allergies (often leading to acute moist dermatitis or "hot spots"), with the most common allergy being to fleas. They can also suffer from seborrhoea, sebaceous adenitis, self-inflicted lick granuloma, and haemophilia.

History

The Golden Retriever was originally bred in Scotland in the mid-19th century. At that time, wildfowl hunting was a popular sport for the wealthy Scottish elite, but the existing retriever breeds were inadequate for retrieving downed game from both water and land. Retrieving from both land and water was necessary because the hunting grounds of the time were pocketed with marshy ponds and rivers. Consequently, the best water spaniels were crossed with the existing retrievers, resulting in the establishment of the breed today known as the Golden Retriever. The Golden Retriever was first developed near Glen Affric in Scotland, at "Guisachan", the highland estate of Dudley Marjoribanks, 1st Baron Tweedmouth. For many years, what breeds were originally crossed was disputed, but in 1952, the publication of Marjoribanks' breeding records from 1835 to 1890 dispelled the myth concerning the purchase of a whole troupe of Russian tracker sheepdogs from a visiting circus, instead it details a careful line-breeding program. Commonly, the breed is said to have originated from the Russian tracker.

Improvements in guns during the 1800s resulted in more fowl being downed during hunts at greater distances and over increasingly difficult terrain, leading to more birds being lost in the field. Because of this improvement in firearms, a need for a specialist retriever arose, as training setter and pointer breeds in retrievals was found to be ineffective. Thus, work began on the breeding of the dog to fill this much-needed role.
The original cross was of a yellow-coloured retriever, 'Nous', with a Tweed Water Spaniel female dog, 'Belle'. The Tweed Water Spaniel is now extinct, but was then common in the border country. Marjoribanks had purchased Nous in 1865 from an unregistered litter of otherwise black wavy-coated retriever pups. In 1868, this cross produced a litter that included four pups; these four became the basis of a breeding program which included the Irish Setter, the sandy-coloured Bloodhound, the St. John's water dog of Newfoundland, and two more wavy-coated black retrievers.

The bloodline was also inbred and selected for trueness to Marjoribanks' idea of the ultimate hunting dog. His vision included a more vigorous and powerful dog than previous retrievers, one that would still be gentle and trainable. Russian sheepdogs are not mentioned in these records, nor are any other working dog breeds. The ancestry of the Golden Retriever is all sporting dogs, in line with Marjoribanks' goals. The Golden Retriever was active and powerful and had a gentle mouth for retrieving games while on hunts.

Organisations other than clubs are dedicated to Golden Retrievers, such as breed-specific adoption sites. One such organisation is the Golden Retriever Club of Scotland, which in August 2013 assembled 222 Golden Retrievers at the historical home of the first Golden Retrievers.

Colors

Cream
























Dark Golden



















Light Golden






















Golden