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Meet the breed: Golden Retriever

Choosing to add a furry friend to your growing household is a long-term commitment, and picking a breed that fits your lifestyle presents the key to a happy home. With over 160 American Kennel Club-recognized breeds, that decision can seem overwhelming. We’re here to help you meet the breed that’s right for you. If you’re looking for a gentle large breed to add to your pack, find out everything you need to know about the Golden Retriever.


  • Cheerful disposition
  • Pleasant temperament
  • Active lifestyle
  • Good with kids
  • Long lifespan


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The cheerful Golden Retriever ranks among the most popular breeds in the nation. With a happy-go-lucky personality and endearing good looks, it’s easy to see why the Golden has captured the hearts of America. Originally bred as hunters to retrieve fowl from land and water, you can bet this breed loves to swim and fetch. A breed that truly knows no strangers, Goldens are known to get along with just about anyone, even robbers and thieves, making them wonderful family members and poor guard dogs.

Breed standards

  • AKC group: Sporting
  • UKC group: Gun Dog
  • Average lifespan: 10-12 years
  • Average size: 55-75 pounds
  • Coat appearance: Long, dense, firm
  • Coloration: Any shade of golden
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Other identifiers: Luxurious golden coat, sturdy and well-balanced body frame.
  • Possible alterations: Cream or red coloration not accepted by AKC.

Is this breed right for you?

Goldens can adapt to just about every lifestyle and environment; however, they’re best suited for families with children and large living spaces with room to roam. They can do well in small apartments if daily exercise is incorporated into their routine. Owners must dedicate time for regular grooming to prevent knots in their long golden coat. Goldens are eager to please their human counterparts and therefore excel at training since they love the bond it creates for their master-canine relationship. Families with young children are encouraged to enroll their Golden into basic obedience courses early on.

golden retriever breed characteristics

A dream day in the life of a Golden Retriever

A day at the lake or pond playing fetch would be a dream day in the making for this water-loving breed. Hanging out at the park with the whole family and even making a few new neighbor friends keep this pooch’s tail wagging. For an extra-special day, going for a brisk run or walk on a cool day will keep a smile on this naturally happy breed.

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