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Golden Retriever

Fun-loving. Clever. Lively. The Golden Retriever may just win the contest for the world's most congenial dog. A family favourite, the longhaired Golden Retriever is a joyful addition to any outgoing household.

If you are seeking a super-friendly and affectionate dog that loves to play fetch and will be your best friend, a Golden Retriever may be the ideal choice.

Where I'm From

Golden Retrievers originate from Great Britain and were bred by British aristocrats to help hunters retrieve downed birds from waterways. Specifically, Lord Tweedmouth developed the breed at his country estate in the late 1800s.

Tweedmouth was an avid hunter who wanted to create the perfect dog to fetch his game. He bred a yellow Wavy-coated Retriever with the now extinct Tweed Water Spaniel, renowned for their calm retrieval skills. Subsequent light-haired litters were bred with other similar dogs until the Golden Retriever was perfected.

England's Kennel Club first recognized the breed in 1911 before their worldwide export to places as far away as Australia and New Zealand where they became popular pets. Today, Golden Retrievers are consistently one of the top 5 most sought after breeds in Australia, New Zealand, the USA and the UK.

What I Look Like

Golden Retrievers are sometimes mistaken for a longhaired Labrador but are actually a separate breed with their own distinct traits. A medium to large-sized dog, they have a strong, athletic body with a luxurious, wavy and water-repellent coat. Golden Retrievers range from a cream colour to a deep gold. Puppies can appear quite pale, but the darker tip on their ear will indicate their adult hue.

How I Act

Golden Retrievers are renowned for their beautiful demeanours and playful personalities. They love and need to be around people who engage with them often and are great with children. As professional retrievers, your Goldie will love to play a game of fetch and should have numerous toys around the house to play with.

Easy to train, Golden Retrievers still need consistent obedience training and socialisation from a young age to become well-balanced family pets. They are good with other animals of all shapes and sizes. Though additional pets should be introduced to the household gradually to allow time for your dog to get used to a new member of the family.

Golden Retrievers originate from a working breed and require significant daily exercise of 30-60 minutes to stay healthy. You should aim to tire out your Golden Retriever through exercise and games so your dog remains good-natured and well-behaved.

Looking After Me

Golden Retrievers are essentially healthy dogs. However, they may be affected by a number of bone diseases including hip and elbow dysplasia, as well as eye and heart issues and other ailments such as blood clotting difficulties and bloat. It is advisable to check the temperament and medical history of a puppy's parents and view veterinarian clearance certificates to ensure you get a healthy dog. Be very wary of uncertified backyard breeders.

Golden Retrievers have a life expectancy of 12-14 years.

They need to be fed high-quality dry food twice a day as per packaging recommendations. Goldies have a propensity to overeat so it is best to limit their food intake to specified times and take away any uneaten portions until the next feeding.

Golden Retrievers have a medium length water-resistant coat, which requires some upkeep to remain manageable. A daily brush is recommended, especially in times of seasonal change when your Goldie will shed profusely. Due to their shedding they do not make good pets for people with allergies or those who do not like vacuuming! If you appreciate a pleasant smelling dog your Goldie will also need a monthly bath.

Their floppy ears, which can incubate an infection, need to be checked regularly for any foul smell or redness that could indicate a medical problem.

Am I the pet for you?

Hip Surgery for rescued puppy

2 weeks ago whilst we were in Fiji we rescued an abandoned puppy that we estimate is about 3 months old. She was starving, filthy, covered in ticks and could barely stand or walk. We fed her, washed her, removed all ticks and just gave her love. We called her Pretzel as she was so skinny when we found her that all her bones were sticking out and her hip bones looked like a big twisted pretzel and her long skinny legs looked like Pretzel sticks. Our intention was to find her a home in Fiji but after a week or so she had gained weight, but we noticed that her left hip bone was still protruding and that when she walked we noticed that her left back foot turned out slightly. Also, when she ran she would use both back legs together and hop like a bunny. We took her to an animal shelter in Fiji called Animals Fiji and they examined her and advised that they thought it might be dislocated. They X-rayed her and then sedated her to try and manipulate the bone back into the socket. This was unsuccessful. The vet advised that it appeared that the end of the bone where the ball should be round was malformed either from a trauma/injury when young or by birth. He advised that he does not have the equipment in Fiji to treat her properly and that she would need surgery to correct the bone and to tighten the ligaments to her support her leg. We are exporting her to Australia on the 7th of March and are trying to raise some funds to assist us. We are hoping that you can assistance to find a Vet in Melbourne that could assist with the operation at a reasonable price.