Before making the decision to purchase a Golden Retriever puppy please take time to do your homework and ask yourself whether you are honestly ready to make the commitment of taking care of this dog’s needs for the next 12 years or so. 

Goldens are a fun-loving breed that thrive on human attention.  Their puppyhood can last several years, and some Goldens retain that playful spirit and interest in constant activity nearly their entire life.  If your lifestyle requires you to be away from home for extended periods during the day, a Golden is probably not for you.  These dogs require lots of attention and exercise to thrive!

Please do not buy a puppy on impulse.  Your Golden will be your companion for many years and you will develop a strong emotional bond.  Take the time to research breeders and talk to them about their focus in breeding dogs.  Some dogs who are bred to be very showy in the conformation ring are also hyper at home.  Dogs that are bred to do field work will have a strong drive and will not be happy being a couch potato. Breeders who focus on performance events such as obedience and agility will have dogs that enjoy working and responding to human interaction and will thrive on interaction with you.  Tell the breeders you speak with what you are looking for in a dog, the activities you would like to share with your dog, and about your lifestyle.  They will assist you in finding the dog that will fit into your household.

Golden Retrievers are large dogs.  Their coats requires frequent grooming and neatening to look their best. Unfortunately, they do shed all year around.  Goldens love to frolic in your yard and may dig, create paths in the grass from their repeated traffic, destroy flowers and bushes, and spot the lawn with urine burns – if you are a lawn fanatic, this is not the dog for you.  Inside your house, expect to have constantly dirty floors.  If you have light colored carpet, you will be cleaning it frequently.   You may find it is best to consider hard surface flooring to minimize the stress of cleaning your home.

Goldens demand lots of time and attention from their human companions.  They are among the most social of the dog breeds.  If you are away from home for long periods every day, your dog will become bored and stressed.  This stress may result in neurotic behaviors such as chewing, digging, excessive barking, etc.  Please do not purchase a Golden unless you have adequate time to spend with your dog.  Your companionship is the greatest gift you can give your Golden.  If you are willing to make your dog a part of your family and include him/her in your daily activities you will be richly rewarded.

Your Golden will require lots of exercise.  A secure fenced yard is a must.  This will allow your Golden an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors when you are busy.  However, this is not a substitute for other daily exercise.  For days with inclement weather, it is also nice to have a kennel enclosure with a solid surface so that your dog can enjoy time outdoors regardless of the weather.

You will be amazed how intelligent and resourceful a Golden can be.  If focused with proper training, this intelligence will soon produce a companion dog extraordinaire.  Your Golden will become your best friend and heart dog with the proper training and socialization.  Activities such as obedience, agility, tracking, hunt tests and therapy work will help you develop a close bond with your dog and ensure they are a welcome addition wherever they go.  These activities take time and commitment on your part.  However, the rewards to both you and your dog are immense.

Conversely, Goldens who do not have the opportunity to develop mental and social skills and are never trained can quickly become a handful.  Living with an untrained 75-pound dog will not be fun for you, and your dog will be unhappy because they do not have the skills to win your love, approval and praise.  Please do not consider adding a Golden to your family unless you are willing to make the commitment to train your dog so that you can enjoy life together.  We cannot stress enough the importance of a well socialized dog!

If after reading this you are still interested in a Golden Retriever, then your work is just starting.  Your next step will be to find a good breeder.  For more information on this, please see our Puppy Checklist for suggestions on questions you should ask breeders.

Finding a good breeder is not an easy task.  Just because a breeder registers their pups with the AKC does not mean they are reputable and that the puppy has a good pedigree, healthy ancestors, and is from dogs that exemplify the breed standard.  Please ask the breeders you speak with if they are members of the Golden Retriever Club of America (GRCA) and a local Golden Retriever Club.  You should also inquire as to whether the breeder believes in and follows the GRCA Code of Ethics when breeding their dogs.


From a dam who is less than two years of age
Whose parents do not have OFA Hip, Elbow, Eye and Heart certifications - be sure to verify them online
Who does not have AKC registration papers because their parents were not registered
Who cannot be registered with the AKC because one or both of their parents had an AKC limited registration
From a litter that was not raised in the house with plenty of human socialization
From an unclean environment
From a breeder who will not take the time to answer all of your questions
From a breeder who wants to send the puppies home before eight weeks of age –
it is very important that the puppies learn to interact with each other and learn proper social behavior from their mom
From a litter where Mom is growls at or bites puppies or humans  -- the puppy will inherit undesirable temperament traits

If you would like further information or have any questions please feel free to contact us by e-mail or phone and we would be more than happy to help.

Feel free to use our Puppy Checklist on the Litter Info page to interview breeders.


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