Golden Retrievers are one of the most popular types of dogs there is, including in the United States, Australia and the UK. They are smart, loveable, fun, loyal and beautiful dogs. Golden Retrievers are a large breed of dog and were bred as what is known as Gun dogs, used to retrieve water fowl, such as ducks, and upland game that hunters shoot during hunting season. Although Golden Retrievers are good with living in different environments, including a home in the country or a suburban home, they do require a lot of exercise every day, and they need proper training to teach them good behavior and obedience. Training your Retriever should start as soon as possible, but before you begin your training there are some things you need to know.
Seven things you need to know before you begin to train your Golden Retriever:
1. Start training right away
A puppy’s mind is like a clean slate. Everything is brand new to them so the sooner you start to engrave good doggie habits on that clean slate, the more receptive they will be. Golden Retrievers are smart dogs but if you do not start training them right away from the moment you bring them home, your Retriever will start to figure out ways of how he wants you to fit into his little life and that only spells one thing, disaster. He will quickly develop bad behaviors and habits that can turn your world and home into a chaotic mess. So do not put off training your pup starting on day one.
2. Exercise, exercise, exercise
Golden Retrievers are known to have a lot of energy. Not only are they a large breed, but they are one of the most energetic breeds and require a lot of exercise in order to keep them happy and content. They were originally bred for retrieving dogs to work with hunters, which requires a lot of energy. They are often used as work dogs for therapy and even trained for military use on some occasions. Turning your Retriever into a couch potato will create a bored mind and body that needs an outlet for pent-up energy. If you don’t exercise your Retriever enough every day, don’t be surprised if you come home to signs of mischievous behavior while you were out. Start your puppy on a routine exercise plan so that he develops a health way to let his energy out. Approximately two hours a day should be sufficient to keep your dog happy, relaxed and more apt to stay well-behaved.
3. Golden Retrievers are slow to mature
One thing many people do not know about Golden Retrievers is that unlike many breeds that begin to mature as they move on into their second year of life, then each year growing a little more mature as they move into adulthood, Golden Retrievers are slow to mature. Many Retrievers stay in a puppy state-of-mind well into their senior years. For an owner, this means that you will forever have a young-at-heart dog. This can be a good thing if you love an energetic, puppy mentality. For others who eventually want a more mellow, senior dog, this may be a bigger responsibility to own this breed then you thought. This is where training early can play a significant role in your pup’s life.
4. Golden’s are highly intelligent
Golden Retrievers are very intelligent and get bored easily. They do not care to be a lazy couch potato and never have anything to do with their minds. As important as physical exercise is for this breed, mental stimulation is just as important. Golden Retriever’s love games and puzzles that keep their minds active and sharp so you will want to be creative in coming up with games and mental challenges to keep them happy, and mentally and emotionally satisfied.
5. Golden Retrievers love food
Golden Retrievers are food lovers. They have a big appetite and will eat as much as you let them. It’s easy to want to spoil your dog, and spoiling them with food every time they look at you with those sad, begging eyes every time they’re around food is easy to do. Unfortunately, these are dogs that tend to gain too much weight and become obese because of their love of food. Realizing this breed has such a love of food before you start to train your pup will help you be better prepared to monitor their eating behaviors so you can help them develop the best eating habits. Do this by monitoring their daily feedings to make sure they are eating enough of their good, highly nutritious food, exercise him regularly and don’t cave to his begging for food every time you have something in your hand.
6. Born to retrieve can mean chewing problems
We already know now that Golden Retrievers were born to retrieve. It is an inborn instinct for them to want to fetch and carry things in their mouth. This may seem cute and harmless when you see them run and grab a shoe you toss to the floor or your child’s toy. But this can be an issue that builds to a problematic issue, namely with chewing. If your dog gets a chuckle from you when he retrieves something he wasn’t told to or something other than his own toy, he thinks he’s being silly and a clown and will ultimately believe it’s ok for him to pick up anything in his mouth, which leads to chewing. Teach him early on which toys are his and have plenty of them for him. And refrain from encouraging or making games of him fetching other items that aren’t his to discourage the beginning of a chewing problem.
7. Powerful sniffers
Golden Retrievers have very powerful noses. They can sense out many substances and smells, which is why they are often used in tasks involving the sense of smell, such as the police force, military and other jobs. This same sense of smell can also get them into some trouble if they aren’t properly monitored. Knowing this Golden Retriever tip will help you in your training efforts to know how to teach your pup what is off limits when you see that his sniffer starting to lead him into trouble.
Like any dog, you can create a very nice pet for your family when you spend adequate time training your Golden Retriever. They love to please their owner and get and give affection freely. The more you understand the Golden Retriever breed, the better you will be able to train him according to his very special personality and characteristics.