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Want to know if a golden retriever is the right breed for you?
That’s a great question to ask yourself because, although they’re great dogs, they’re certainly not for everyone.
And it would be much worse to find out that a golden retriever was the wrong dog for you after you got one.
So this post will help you make the right decision on whether or not you’re destined to be a golden parent before you bring one home (which is better for everyone!).
We’ve also created a quiz to help you make the decision, which you can take by clicking here:
Should I Get A Golden Retriever?
If you’re considering a golden retriever, here are six factors that you need to consider:
- Golden retriever social habits
- Golden retriever training & exercise
- Golden retriever shedding
- Golden retriever grooming
- Golden retriever size
- Golden retriever price
Let’s look into these factors a little more.
Golden Retrievers Are Social Dogs
If you’re looking for a dog that you can stick in the backyard to entertain themselves or leave at home while you go have a fun day out on the town, a golden might not be the dog for you.
Golden retrievers are social animals and they love to be with their families.
If you’re considering a golden retriever, you should be the type of person who likes to take your dog when you do things.
Whether that’s boating and hiking, going to breweries and coffee shops, or just walking around the neighborhood, if you get a golden retriever you should plan on taking them with you.
They’re social dogs and all they want to do is be with their families.
If that doesn’t sound fun to you, then maybe a golden isn’t the right fit.
Golden Retrievers Need Lots Of Training & Exercise
Goldens were bred to retrieve game and hunt in the fields all day.
So if you take a dog with those sort of genetics and pen them up inside all day, you’re going to have problems.
A bored dog is a misbehaved dog, which can result in unwanted barking, chewing, jumping, leash pulling… almost all unwanted behaviors stem from your pup being bored.
So how do you prevent boredom?
Goldens are smart and need to be both mentally and physically stimulated.
It takes up a lot of time to keep a golden well trained and occupied, so if playing with and training your dog a few hours a day doesn’t sound fun, or just isn’t possible for you, then a golden might not be the dog for you.
Learn more about how much exercise golden retrievers need here.
Golden Retriever Shedding
Goldens are known for their beautiful, fluffy golden coats.
However, thanks to that coat you will almost always have a thin layer “fur-fetti” all over your house.
Sometimes, I even find an Oliver hair in my dinner.
Does it bother me?
Not in the slightest — he’s already put me under his spell and I’m totally in love.
I bet most golden parents would say the same, but if you really don’t like fur everywhere, then this probably isn’t the breed for you.
Now, if you don’t particularly love the thought of hair being everywhere, but you don’t care enough to let it stop you from getting a golden, there are some things you can do.
You can also keep a lint roller on hand so you can get it off of your clothes if you go out.
Check out this post for more tips on how to manage golden retriever shedding.
And speaking of shedding, this takes us to the next point…
Golden Retrievers Need A Lot Of Grooming
Goldens are some of the prettiest dogs, but all that beauty comes with a price!
Their long coats need lots of brushing, their nails need to be trimmed, their ears need to be cleaned, their teeth need to be brushed, and they need regular baths.
It’s a lot of work!
But you know what?
No matter which type of dog you get, you’ll need to do all of these things to not only keep them looking nice, but for their health, too.
If you don’t brush your dog’s teeth or clean their nails, they could have teeth or gum problems, or have foot problems.
So sure, goldens might need a little more brushing than some breeds with shorter hair, and their ears might need to be cleaned a little more because they’re floppy, but grooming any breed of dog takes work!
You can check out this post to learn more about golden retriever grooming.
Golden Retrievers Are Medium To Large Dogs
Goldens aren’t small.
They’re medium to large dogs that typically weigh between 55 to 75 pounds and are between 21.5 to 24 inches tall at the withers (the highest point of a dog’s shoulder blades).
This means that there’s a lot of dog to brush, they take up a lot of room on the couch, in the bed, or in the car, and you can’t just pick them up if they feel like barking at a neighbor.
But it also means there’s more dog to snuggle with (goldens are the best snugglers).
And, for better or worse, one lick of their tongue can soak the whole side of your face.
So if a big dog sounds like a lot of work to you, or an inconvenience to you, then maybe a golden retriever isn’t right for you.
Golden Retrievers Are Not Cheap
Golden retrievers are expensive.
- Purebred golden retrievers from a breeder range from $500-3,000
- Adopting a golden retriever will range from $200-500
- Expect to spend about $2,077.53 – $2,947.53 in the first year
- Expect to spend about $1,506 – $2,464 in their adult years
(Click here to see how we got those numbers.)
They eat a lot, they need lots of toys, they have some common health problems, and they’re not cheap to adopt.
But just like all dogs need to be groomed, all dogs cost money
All dogs eat, all dogs need toys, and all dogs need to go to the vet.
Now, smaller dogs may eat less food and require smaller, cheaper toys, but still, no dog is cheap, so really consider your budget before you think about getting a dog.
Take The Golden Retriever Quiz
To see if a golden retriever is the right dog for you, click here to take the golden retriever quiz.
It’s only a few questions and will compare your lifestyle with the requirements of being a golden retriever owner.
Golden retrievers are wonderful dogs, but they certainly aren’t for everyone.
Goldens like spending time with their families, they need a lot of training and exercise, they shed a lot, they need a lot of grooming, they’re big dogs, and they’re expensive.
If that sounds a little overwhelming or off putting, that’s totally fine.
I’m glad you discovered that now before you got a dog that’s not a good fit for you.
But if all that sounds good to you — that’s awesome!
Have any other questions about whether or not a golden retriever is right for you?
Let me know down in the comments.
And if you know someone who’s considering getting a golden retriever, please tag or share this with them!