Golden Retriever Puppies
So, you’ve decided you want a golden retriever puppy! These puppies are one of the most popular breeds in the world, due to their reputation for being a loving family dog that’s a good choice for a first-time owner.
However, as with any new pet, it’s important to do your research. You want your dog to live a long, happy life, and get off on the best foot!
So, here’s everything you should know about your golden retriever puppy.
Where To Get A Golden Retriever Puppy
Gooddog.com is a source for breeders, though you should still conduct your own research when choosing one. Unfortunately, due to their popularity, shelters don’t usually have golden retriever puppies. If you’re committed to rescuing, you’ll have to get an adult and/or mixed breed.
There are golden retriever rescues around the world too but when it comes to adopting them out, they usually have strict standards as they want to find these dogs a true forever home after what they’ve been through.
When it comes to breeders, you need to find a reputable one. Reputable breeders will have the following:
- A contract in place
- Health tests on the parents
- Vet records for the puppies
- AKC registration
- An open communication style
If you feel like the breeder isn’t open to being asked questions, skip them. This is an important decision and you want to find the best person possible.
A golden retriever puppy is likely to cost up to $3000 (if it comes from show-quality parents) but from a reputable breeder, it could go as low as $1500.
It might be tempting to contact the person on Craigslist who’s advertising golden retriever puppies for $300, but don’t. These puppies either aren’t purebred or haven’t been health tested, because the cost of vet visits alone would total up to more than that. That’s part of the reason puppies are so expensive.
If you’re lucky enough to adopt one through a rescue, the fee will be lower, but still likely a few hundred dollars.
Golden retrievers are fairly large dogs, weighing in at around 55-75lb. They have a gold coat that can come in various shades and is usually slightly long, though it might be straight or wavy.
They are very distinct in appearance.
Part of the reason golden retrievers are considered great first-time or family dogs is that they’re so intelligent and sociable. It’s not normal for a golden retriever to be highly reactive or unfriendly, though it’s important to remember that a dog’s upbringing and socialization at a young age truly shapes them.
To make sure your golden retriever is the best version of itself, you should make sure to introduce them to a lot of new sights, sounds, and people during the critical socialization period (before sixteen weeks). Although they have to be vaccinated for you to take them places with high dog traffic due to the risk of disease, you can always carry them around pet-friendly stores as well as visit friends and family.
There are also YouTube videos that can play sounds such as crowds, cats, and fireworks, to get them used to those noises.
Considering a dog’s diet is one of the most important things to do early. Some people choose to feed their dog raw, which is a valid option if you use a service preparing meals for you. Otherwise, you risk obesity or them not getting the nutrients they need.
Large breed high-quality kibble is perfect for golden retrievers. Purina Pro Plan is a good one.
Never grab the cheapest bag off the shelf without checking the ingredients, as it may not meet your dog’s needs.
There are also various snacks you can include in your dog’s diet if they lose interest in the kibble — for example, including some scrambled egg on top of it to entice them into eating more. You could also douse it in some dog-safe vegetable or chicken broth (just be sure they don’t include garlic or onion).
Grain-free food has been linked to heart problems, so avoid this.
Golden Retriever Puppy – Veterinary Needs
While they’re a puppy, however, they need more visits. Puppies are vaccinated every three weeks until they’re around sixteen weeks old. This is to protect against distemper, parvovirus, etc. They’ll also need a rabies vaccine.
Your vet will be able to give you good advice on their care. They’ll also give you flea and tick prevention, as well as checking for parasites to ensure your dog gets the best start in life.
Golden retrievers will need to be brushed regularly and, during shedding periods, this means once a day. Get your dog used to the brush while they’re young by desensitizing them to the brush and giving them high-value treats.
You’ll also need to cut their nails every six weeks. Some people use clippers and others opt for a Dremel. Either is fine and has advantages and disadvantages.
Although your dog might occasionally need a bath, don’t over bathe them. No more than one bath every few weeks should be necessary, or you can make their skin sensitive.
If you’ve decided this is the breed for you, congratulations! Golden retrievers are a great breed, especially for beginners or families with kids. Just make sure to train them and socialize them from the start so they grow into the awesome dog they were built to be.
Golden Retriever Puppy Photos