Looking to get a short-haired golden retriever?
Well, you might be looking for a long time…
Technically, short-haired golden retrievers do not exist, however, some goldens do have shorter hair than others.
In this article, we’ll dive into the truth about short-haired golden retrievers, how to manage golden retriever shedding, some different types of goldens, and how to find the perfect golden for you.
Let’s dive in!
The Truth About Short Haired Golden Retrievers
Although there’s no such thing as a short-haired golden retriever, some golden retrievers do have shorter hair than others.
Some types of goldens, like field golden retrievers, typically have shorter hair than other types, such as those bred for shows.
And although you might be tempted to turn your regular golden retriever into a short-haired golden by giving them a haircut, that could actually put their health in jeopardy, as well as ruin their beautiful coats.
So let’s talk about the different types of goldens, first…
Which Types Of Golden Retrievers Have Shorter Hair?
There is only one breed of golden retriever, but there are several different variations within the breed.
One of those variations is the field golden retriever, also known as the field bred golden retriever.
These goldens are bred for hunting and working in the field.
They’re driven, athletic, and loyal.
And, relevant to this article, their coats tend to be shorter.
On the other hand, you have golden retrievers bred for show.
Whereas field goldens are bred for their personality, athleticism, and drive, show golden retrievers are bred for their temperament and looks.
They’re bred to conform to what judges think is the breed standard for golden retrievers, and that is a stocky body with a long, flowy, golden coat.
If you’re looking for goldens with short coats, goldens from show lines (also known as conformation lines) are not your best bet.
But all that being said, companion goldens (dogs not bred specifically for work in the field or shows) can have shorter coats, too, if you know how to find them…
How To Get A Golden Retriever With A Shorter Coat
When my golden retriever, Oliver, was about six months old, I started to get a little worried.
He was lanky, had a really short coat, and looked exactly like my friend’s labrador…
Was he a part lab?
Was he a short-hair golden retriever?
Check out the video below to see his adorable, short-haired lankiness.
As it turns out, he’s not a lab, nor is he a short-haired golden retriever.
He’s just a regular golden retriever with a relatively short coat compared to some goldens (see the picture below).
And I’m very thankful his coat is short because he doesn’t shed that much!
Now where did he get his shorter coat?
From his parents, of course!
Coat length is hereditary, so if you want to find a golden retriever with a shorter coat, you need to find a breeder who’s breeding goldens with short coats.
Oliver’s parents had relatively short coats, so he has a shorter coat, too.
Of course, when choosing a breeder you need to consider more than just coat length, but you can learn more about choosing a breeder here.
When Do Golden Retrievers Grow Their Full Coat?
Another thing to consider when looking at a golden retriever’s coat is how old they are.
Goldens grow very fast and reach their full height at about a year.
However, their coats don’t fully fill out until they’re about a year and a half.
So if you see someone walking down the street with a beautiful golden sporting a short coat, know that unless the golden was over a year and a half old, chances are their coat might grow a little longer.
What About Golden Retrievers And Allergies?
Now, if you’re looking for a golden retriever with a short coat for allergy purposes, you might be barking up the wrong tree.
For one, it’s not exactly the fur that causes allergic reactions.
Most people are allergic to dander (flakes of dead skin), and possibly the saliva and urine (according to WebMD).
So getting a golden with shorter fur won’t necessarily help you if you’re allergic to goldens.
There will still be dander everywhere, and they’ll probably have a hard time not licking your face because they’re so full of love…
Golden Retriever Shedding
If you’re looking for a golden retriever with shorter hair because you’re worried about shedding, you should strongly consider how bad you want a golden.
Although I got lucky with Oliver, most goldens shed a lot.
If you want a golden in your home you’re going to need to get used to having hair on your clothes, carpet, furniture, and sometimes even your food (fun fact: I found a little piece of golden fur in my salad tonight…).
Check out this post for 17 tips to stop golden retriever shedding, but here’s a quick preview to decrease the amount of shedding:
- brush your golden daily
- bathe them every 1-2 months
- feed them high-quality dog food
And speaking of shedding, here’s what you should never do…
Why You Should Never Shave Your Golden Retriever
You can’t just decide to turn your regular golden retriever into a short-haired golden by giving them a haircut.
Golden retrievers have double coats that consist of a soft undercoat that helps regulate their body temperature and a long, smooth outer coat that is waterproof and protects them from dirt and debris.
Some people may think they’re doing their dog a favor by shaving them in the summer, but their undercoat regulates their body temperature even when it’s hot out, so doing this is very bad for their health.
Plus, if you cut their long outer coat, it may never grow back the same (I’ve heard lots of horror stories about unfortunate trips to the groomer where too much fur was cut off…).
Other Options If You Want A Short Haired Golden Retriever
If you want a golden retriever but don’t want to deal with the long hair, you might want to consider another type of dog.
Goldendoodles could be a good option, or labradors, or golden retriever mixes.
I have a friend who had a golden retriever and lab mix (known as a goldador) and he essentially looks like a short-haired golden retriever.
He’s sweet like labs and goldens, has a blocky head, and has lots of energy.
So even though short-haired golden retrievers don’t exist, some goldens do have shorter fur than others, and there are steps you can take to help manage their shedding.
There are also other options, such as goldendoodles, goldadors, or other breeds.
Have any questions about golden retrievers and their coats?
Let me know in the comments below!
And if you liked this article, you’ll love our Complete Guide To Golden Retrievers.