The Golden Retriever is a medium-sized breed of dog. They were historically developed as gundogs to retrieve shot waterfowl such as ducks and upland game birds during hunting and shooting parties. As such, they were bred to have a soft mouth to retrieve game undamaged and have an instinctive love of water. The golden retriever has a dense inner coat that provides it with adequate warmth. The outer coat is sleek and water repellent, and lies flat against the body. The official colour of the breed is the varying shades of gold that are most often seen. These dogs are well suited to suburban or country environments. They need lots of outdoor exercise but should be kept fenced in because of their instincts as hunting dogs.
The breed's intelligence and versatility suit the dogs well for a variety of roles including guide dog for the blind, hearing dog for deaf people, hunting dog, illegal drug detector, and search and rescue participant. Because of their loyal and gentle temperament, golden retrievers are also popular family pets.
Golden Retrievers possess a friendly, eager-to-please demeanour, and are the fifth most popular family dog breed (by registration) in the United States, the fifth most popular in Australia, and the eighth most popular in the United Kingdom.
Country of origin - Scotland
Weight -> Male average 65-75 lbs (29-34 kg)
Female -> average 60-70 lbs (27-32 kg)
Height -> Male 23-24 in (58-61 cm)
Female -> 21 1/2-22 1/2 in (55-57 cm)
Coat -> straight or moderately wavy
Color -> any shades of gold or cream
Life -> span average 10-12 years
Some variations do exist between the British type Golden Retrievers prevalent throughout Europe and Australia, and those of American lines and these differences are reflected in the breed standard. The muzzle of the British type of dog is wider and shorter, and its forehead is blockier. It has shorter legs, with a slightly deeper chest, and shorter tail. Its features make it generally heavier than the American type. Males should be between 56–61 cm (22–24 inches) at the withers and females slightly shorter at between 51–56 cm (20–22 inches). Their weight, however, is not specified in the UK standard. The KC standard calls for a level topline and straight hindquarters without the slight rear angulation found in American lines. The eyes of the European type are noted for their roundness and darkness as contrasted with the triangular or slanted composition of their American counterparts. A Golden Retriever of British breeding can have a coat colour of any shade of gold or cream; however, red or mahogany are not permissible colours. Originally cream was not an acceptable colour in the UK standard; however, by 1936 the standard was revised to include cream. It was felt this exclusion was a mistake as the original "yellow" retrievers of the 19th century were lighter in colour than the then current standard permitted. As with American lines, white is an unacceptable colour in the show ring. The British KC standard is used in all countries with the exceptions of the USA and Canada. Some breeders of this type in America may import their dogs to improve the temperament and health noted in those bloodlines . Golden Retrievers have a muscular body with great endurance built for hunting.
An American Golden is lankier and less stocky than a British Type. A male should stand 22–24 inches (56–61 cm) in height at the shoulders, and females should be 20–22 inches (51–56 cm). The coat is dense and water repellent, in various shades of lustrous gold, with moderate feathering. The gait should be free, smooth, powerful, and well-coordinated.
As with American Golden Retrievers, Canadians are often taller and leaner than their British counterparts. However, Canadian retrievers differ in the density and colour of their coats, which are commonly thinner and darker than those of Americans.
Coat and colour
As indicated by their name, their coat comes in light golden colours to dark golden colours. They have two different types of hair on their coat. The topcoat is water-resistant and slightly wavy. It sheds in small amounts throughout the year. The undercoat is soft and keeps the retriever cool in summer and warm in winter. The undercoat sheds in the spring and fall. It usually lies flat against the belly. Golden Retrievers have mild feathering on the back of their forelegs and heaver feathering on the front of their neck, back of their thighs and the bottom of their tails. The American Kennel Club (AKC) standard states that the coat is a "rich, lustrous golden of various shades", disallowing coats that are extremely light or extremely dark. This leaves the outer ranges of coat colour up to a judge's discretion when competing in conformation shows. Therefore, "pure white" and "red" are unacceptable colours like black . The Kennel Club (UK) also permits cream as an acceptable coat colour. Judges may also disallow Goldens with pink noses, or those lacking pigment. The Golden's coat can also be of a mahogany colour, referred to as "redheads", although this is not accepted in the British show ring. As a Golden grows older, its coat can become darker or lighter, along with a noticeable whitening of the fur on and around the muzzle. Puppy coats are usually much lighter than their adult coats, but a puppy with a darker colouration at the tips of the ears may indicate a darker adult colour. A golden's coat should never be too long, as this may prove to be a disservice to them in the field, especially when retrieving game.
The Golden Retriever's eagerness to please has made them consistent, top performers in the obedience and agility rings. Plus with their excellent swimming ability they are great at dock jumping. Their natural retrieving ability also sees them excel in flyball and field trials.
The first three dogs ever to achieve the AKC Obedience Champion title were Golden Retrievers; the first of the three was a female named Ch. Moreland's Golden Tonka.
Since Golden Retrievers are so trainable, they are used for many important jobs. Some of these jobs include being a guide dog for people who are blind, sniffing out drugs or bombs at an airport or helping to rescuing people from earthquakes or other types of natural disasters. This breed is also used in water rescue/lifesaving. It continues in that role today, along with the Leonberger, Newfoundland and Labrador Retriever dogs; they are used at the Italian School of Canine Lifeguard.
Posted by Kevin for Socialphy!
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