Why Golden Retrievers Are the Best Family Dog
If you’ve ever been blessed to have a dog as part of your life, then you know that there’s something about a dog that makes you a better person. Choosing to add a dog to your family is a big decision, and if you have children, then there are even more factors to consider.
Of course, you want to find a dog that is good with kids, but you most likely are also looking for a pup that will quickly become their best friend. Golden retrievers have enjoyed a long reputation as a great family pet, but what exactly is it about this breed that makes them such a good family dog?
Why a Golden Retriever Is a Great Choice for Families
If you’re looking for a dog that is a great match for your family, here are 8 reasons why a golden retriever makes the best family dog:
- A golden retriever has a loving and affectionate demeanor.
- A golden retriever is gentle with kids and other animals.
- A golden retriever is loyal to his family.
- A golden retriever is eager to please his owners, making him easier to train.
- A golden retriever is very active, which means he loves to play for long periods of time.
- A golden retriever has a laid-back personality, which is a big bonus with young children.
- A golden retriever doesn’t require extensive maintenance and grooming, which is good news for a busy family.
- A golden retriever likes to “latch-on” to its humans, making it a great constant-companion for kids.
Getting To Know the Golden Retriever
When you are searching for that perfect pooch to add to the mix, your future pup’s personality is only one part of the equation. There are several logistical pieces of the puzzle that you have to think about when you are looking for a dog, such as size, ease of training, health issues (if any) that are common to the breed, and your budget. For example, a dog can be the absolute best dog in the whole world, but if he weighs 250 pounds and you live in a small apartment, he might not be the best fit for your family. Likewise, you might find a pup that is perfect in every way, but you know you can’t keep up with the extensive grooming and maintenance that the breed requires.
Therefore, it’s always helpful to get to know the basics of any dog breed that you are considering adding to your family. Here are a few helpful stats about the friendly and devoted golden retriever:
A male golden retriever can grow to be roughly 23 to 24 inches in height and weigh between 65 and 75 pounds. Females can reach an average height of 21.5 to 22.5 inches and weigh between 55 and 65 pounds. It’s definitely important to decide ahead of time what size dog you want. Consider if you need to stick with a smaller breed based on your living situation, or if a large breed is your preference. If you opt for a large dog, then exactly how big can you go? Keep in mind that the bigger the dog usually means the more expensive, since he’ll eat more, cost more to board, and require larger supplies, like oversized bowls and a bigger kennel (when needed).
A golden retriever’s average life expectancy is 10 to 12 years. This is an important factor to consider if you plan to get a dog that will grow up with your children; knowing the average life span might influence when you get your pup or if you choose to adopt a younger or older dog.
A golden retriever does not have high-maintenance and grooming needs; an occasional bath will usually do the trick, as well as brushing a couple of times a week. A golden tends to shed his thick, outer coat once or twice a year, so, during these times, you can expect to brush your pup daily. In addition, regular teeth brushing and ear and eye checks are important, as well as regular nail-trimming, which should be done with any breed.
Overall, a golden retriever is a healthy dog breed. If you get your golden through a breeder then your pup should have been screened for various health issues like heart disease, eye conditions, and hip dysplasia. Always make sure to have an established relationship with a veterinarian that you trust if you are about to add a dog to your family.
A golden retriever is a member of the sporting group of dog breeds, which means this pup needs a lot of exercise and activity. Be prepared to provide your golden with ample opportunities for daily exercise, whether it’s taking him along on your daily jog or bike ride, signing him up for agility training, or making him your hunting and fishing partner. Kids can definitely enjoy hours of playtime with this active canine, whether it’s running around the backyard, chasing a frisbee at the dog park, or snapping on a leash for a long walk. Like many dogs, if a golden retriever does not get adequate exercise, it can lead to undesirable behavior and an unhappy pup.
A golden retriever is eager to please, friendly, and loyal, all traits that make this breed fairly easy to train. Since a golden takes so well to training, this makes him a fun dog for kids since he can learn some entertaining tricks, like how to catch a flying disc or “toss” a ball. Of course, no matter what type of dog you get, early training and proper socialization are essential to the development of a well-rounded and happy pup.
Golden Retrievers and Kids
Although some dog breeds are better suited for households with children more than others, no matter what type of pup you bring home, it’s important that everyone (humans and dogs alike) know how they are expected to behave and interact with each other. It’s always important to prepare your children for the new doggy addition to the home, teaching your kids the appropriate way to interact with animals and also setting expectations ahead of time.
Give some of the responsibility of caring for your new pup to the kids who are old enough to handle it. For example, young children can help feed the family dog, older children can be in charge of dog walks, and children of any age can be expected to participate in playtime and picking up after their new furry friend.
If you’re looking for a great family dog, a golden retriever is an excellent choice. Do you think you might want to look into adopting a dog or rescuing a golden? The Golden Retriever Club of America National Rescue Committee is a great starting point, plus petfinder.com provides resources about various rescue and adoption organizations across the US. When you’re ready to add a canine companion to your family, make sure to check out the rest of our blogs for helpful tips and resources. At Neater Pets, our top priority is to provide pet parents with all of the tools you need to do the very best for your pets.
- Fernando Becattini