Feeding Your Golden Retriever

All Golden Retriever puppies will nurture from their mother until they reach the age of seven weeks. Once they reach the age of three weeks, they should be fed with puppy food, which you should soak and mix into a warm grubby compound. This way, it resembles the food they get from their mother, and they will learn quickly how their food tastes and how they should eat it.

Once you bring your puppy home, you should always make sure that you use the same food that he has become accustomed to. The breeder will start training the puppy with food, and it’s up to you to ensure that he gets the food he has come to know. Golden Retriever puppies have very delicate stomachs, and they can be very receptive to any changes in their food.

When you first bring your new Golden Retriever puppy home, he or she may not be too interested in eating for the first few days. Being in a new home can be stressful for the puppy, which is why you shouldn’t force him to eat. The puppy will also realize that he doesn’t have competition at the food bowl, because he is away from his litter. You shouldn’t worry if he doesn’t immediately eat, as it will take him some time.

Once your puppy has slept through the night, you should take him outside and let him relieve himself, then bring him in and give him some food. You should also plan feedings throughout the day, such as the morning, middle of the day, then at night. Once you have planned feedings, you should make sure that you stick to this plan so that your puppy will get used to it.

Keep in mind that the last feeding of the day doesn’t necessarily need to be set in stone. You should always aim to feed your puppy at least a half an hour before you head to bed, so that you can take him outside after eating. If you time it just right every night, you can feed your Golden, take him out to use the bathroom, and still have plenty of time to get ready for bed. At night, when you sleep, you should have puppy pads or newspapers in an area that your Golden is familiar with so he can use the bathroom if he can’t get you to take him out.

First the first few weeks, your Golden will eat a little bit of the food. Once he has reached 8 weeks of age, he should be on dry food with a little bit of warm water added to it. The best way to feed is to keep adding a little bit of warm water to the food, and let the pup eat until he is finished. If you continue to do this throughout feedings, your Golden will begin to eat all of his portion.

Keep in mind that you should never rush him, or change anything about the way he feeds. Golden Retrievers will eat their share, although it will take them a bit of time to develop the proper eating habits. As the puppy gets older, his stomach will grow and he will begin to eat more. During this time, you won’t need to add any water to his food. Golden Retrievers are a truly unique breed, a breed that loves to be fed – and craves attention. If you stick to your plan when your puppy is little – he will be a healthy eater as he gets older.

Adopting An Older Golden Retriever

Those of you who want a Golden Retriever but aren’t ready to go through the trials and tribulations of a puppy, should look into adopting an older Golden. Older Golden Retrievers are mature, and prove to be great in homes where they need to spend a quality amount of time by themselves. They are a very adjustable breed, being good tempered. No matter how old the Golden may be, he will quickly become a valued member of your family in little to no time at all.

Many times, breeders will have older dogs for sale. There are several reasons for this, which include show dogs that have lost their potential, studs that have been used for breeding, female Golden’s that have been bred a few times then retired, or other types of special conditions where a breeder is helping a friend get rid of his Golden Retriever. There are other reasons as well, although whatever they may be – the adult Golden Retriever will be available for anyone who wants him.

Most older Golden Retrievers are already housebroken, and known a lot of behavior patterns and how to adapt to a new and loving family. Although it will be a little hard on your new dog at first, if you give him plenty of love, attention, and patience, he’ll be just fine. You need to keep reassuring your new Golden on a regular basis, and let him know that you are his new owner and that you love you and you are glad he’s a member of your family.

If you have been thinking of adopting an older Golden Retriever, you should make sure that you learn everything you can about him. You should also determine his temperament, and whether or not it’s compatible with your family. You should also learn important things as well, such as his diet, likes, dislikes, daily routine, and his habits. Before you decide to take him, you should always make sure that the members of your family meet him as well, so you can talk it over and decide whether or not everyone wants the dog to be a member of your family.

With an older dog, you need to take care of him for the first days, and let him know where everything in your home is. You’ll need to show him where he sleeps, where he should use the bathroom, and where his food is. Take your time and be patient with him, as will normally take him a few days to learn how things in your home work.

You should always give your new Golden Retriever at least a month or so to get used to his new environment, before you start his new obedience training. Even though your new dog may have some prior obedience training, you should still enroll him in a new class. This way, he can brush up on training and you can work with him to help him understand. Once you have finished training, he’ll understand your commands better and you and him will get along just fine.

All Golden Retrievers, regardless of their age, love attention. Older Golden’s on the other hand, may have medical problems that you aren’t aware of. You shouldn’t let this stop you from getting one though, simply because the rewards that you’ll find are far greater than any cons that may come to mind. Although many people don’t give a lot of thought to getting an older Golden Retriever – they are perfect for families who don’t want to put up the time and troubles of raising a puppy.

Common Health Problems

There are many common health problems that your Golden Retriever will experience from time to time. Most of these ailments are nothing serious, providing you know how they should be treated and prevented. Below, we will take a look at the most common ailments, and tell you how to prevent your Golden from getting them.

Distemper virus
The distemper virus is an airborne disease that poses a high risk. This virus can be prevented by getting your Golden 3 different vaccinations when he is between 6 and 16 weeks of age, along with his regular annual booster shot. The symptoms from this virus include fever, cough, diarrhea, and vomiting. If your Golden Retriever has these symptoms, you should immediately take him to see the vet.

Heartworms
Heartworms are among the most common ailment with all dog breeds. They can reach lengths of up to 12 inches in the heart and the lung arteries, leading to heart failure, a decrease in blood circulation, and even death in some cases. The symptoms with heartworms may not appear until it is too late, so you are better off preventing them with the correct heartworm medicines.

Heatstroke
During the summer months or hot days, your Golden Retriever can get a heatstroke. You can prevent this from happening by giving your dog plenty of water, and never leaving him in direct sunlight. If you are playing together on a hot day, you should give him plenty of time to rest so he doesn’t overdo it. The symptoms indicating a heatstroke include a lot of panting or drooling, dark gums, a glazed expression, rapid pulse, and even vomiting. If your dog starts to show any of these symptoms, you should immediately take him to the vet.

Rabies
Rabies is one of the more serious ailments that your Golden Retriever can get, as it has an adverse affect on your dog’s nervous system. Normally, dogs get rabies through a bite of another animal that is infected with the disease. There are rabies shots that helps to prevent the disease, and your dog should get them at least once a year. The symptoms of rabies include seizures, aggression, and foaming at the mouth. If you suspect your Golden has rabies, you should call the vet immediately.

Tapeworms
Tapeworms are normally caused by fleas, and affect your dog’s stomach. The symptoms for tapeworms include a loss in weight, diarrhea, and even biting of the rectal area. You can easily prevent your Golden from tapeworms by using a rigid flea control. If your Golden Retriever exhibits symptoms for tapeworms, you should take him to the vet immediately. If the vet catches them in time, he may be able to kill the tapeworms with an oral medicine.

Hookworms
Hookworms result from your Golden coming in contact with feces, his mother, or the worm simply burrowing under exposed skin. You can prevent your dog from getting hookworms by cleaning his living area and keeping his skin clean. The symptoms that accompany hookworms include a dry coat, weight loss, weakness, and blood in the stool. As with all other ailments, you should immediately contact your vet if your Golden Retriever starts to show any of these symptoms.

Although these are just some of the most common ailments for Golden Retrievers, there are other ailments and health problems that your dog can get. If your Golden starts to show any signs of ailment, disease, or health problem, you shouldn’t hesitate to contact your vet and set up an appointment. Some of these diseases and ailments can be pretty serious – although they can be treated if you catch them in time.

Choosing The Right Breeder

When you decide to get a new Golden Retriever puppy, the first choice you will face is where to get your puppy from. No matter how hard you try, it’s nearly impossible to know whether or not the puppy you are buying will grow up to be healthy and strong. In order to even assume that your puppy will grow up to be healthy, you’ll need to trust the individual you get your Golden from.

There are three options available to you, in terms of breeders. You should carefully think about each one, as they all will vary. Below are the three options you have to choose from, and a little bit of information to help you make this very important decision.

Dealer or pet shop
A pet shop is simply the worst place that you can get your Golden Retriever puppy. The puppies they have for sale here are bred poorly, and raised in poor locations to say the least. At these types of places, the puppies are thought of as a profit and nothing more. There is little to no emphasis on quality here either – as pet shops prefer quantity over qualify.

Due to the way the puppies are bred and raised, pet shops make quite a bit of profit. With there being so little that goes into the breeding and care of the puppies, pet shops make a lot of money. They mainly rely on impulse buying, not giving you a lot of time to evaluate the puppies that they have for sale. If you’re looking for an addition to your family, and a puppy that you know is healthy, you’d be better off looking somewhere else for your puppy.

Backyard breeders
Backyard breeders are considered to be yet another poor choice for your puppy. Almost all backyard breeders are people who own a few Golden’s and find it to be fun to breed their female for the fact of having puppies, or breed her once or twice before they decide to go ahead and get her spayed. Backyard breeders don’t look for quality or go out of their way to care for their litters, as they are more or less breeding to make money – and nothing more.

Normally, backyard breeders know very little about the breed in general, and even less about how to properly care for their Golden Retrievers. Backyard breeders normally aren’t familiar with the problems associated with breeding, and most could care less. Their only goal here is to breed Golden Retriever puppies. Once the puppies have been bred, their remaining goal is to sell the puppies as fast as they can – for the highest possible price.

Hobby breeders
A hobby breeder is the ideal way to get your Golden puppy. Hobby breeders are loyal, committed, and think of their pups as more than just a hobby. Although they do make money breeding, they could honestly care less. Hobby breeders care more about the quality of their puppies than anything else, and they commit themselves to helping you get the best Golden Retriever pup possible.

Hobby breeders accept responsibility for each one of their puppies, and they stand behind each and every one of their pups. If you want the best pup you can get for your money, you need to visit a hobby breeder. They very rarely produce poor quality Golden Retriever puppies, as they care a lot about quality. If you get your Golden puppy from a hobby breeder, you can rest assured that you getting a healthy puppy from the start.

Eye And Heart Disease

Eye disease is very common with Golden Retrievers. Most Golden’s will generally have hereditary cataracts, which is a common eye problem. At an early age, with affected Golden’s, one type of hereditary cataract will appear. Even though it may not cause interference with the vision of the Golden Retriever, some dogs will progress into total and quite possibly severe loss of vision.

Sometimes, Golden Retrievers can get affected by non hereditary cataracts, although an examination by a board certified veterinarian can determine just how bad the cataracts really are. If cataracts are indeed suspected with a Golden Retriever, then breeding won’t be recommended. Breeding a Golden who has this condition can lead to serious problems, such as passing it on to the pups.

Several families of the Golden Retriever breed have been known to carry genes for CPRA (Central Progressive Retinal Atrophy), which affects the retina, and can result in permanent blindness for Golden’s at a young age. There are other types of eye defects as well, such as retinal dysplasia, which prevents a Golden from breeding.

Trouble with both the eyelid and eyelashes are also a possibility with Golden Retrievers, with some being the result of hereditary factors. The eyelids rotating in or out, or the eyelashes rubbing on or in the eye are both common problems with the breed. Even though surgery can help to fix these types of problems, dogs that are experiencing this type of problem shouldn’t be allowed to breed nor compete in shows under any type of AKC rules.

You should always have your Golden Retriever checked annually for eye disease, as it can develop during any age. When you take your Golden to have him examined for eye disease, you should have a veterinary ophthalmologist do the exam. He has all of the necessary equipment, and the proper training needed to make sure that your dog gets the best examination possible.

Heart disease
SAS (Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis) is the most common and widespread form of heart disease within the entire Golden Retriever species. Before you breed your Golden Retriever, you should always have him examined for heart disease by a certified veterinary cardiologist. If the cardiologist detects a heart murmur, he will recommend additional tests for your dog.

In the event that the results prove negative, it doesn’t necessarily rule heart disease out, as some milder forms may still be present, although undetectable. If a Golden Retriever is diagnosed to have any type of heart disease, he should not breed. Breeding Golden Retrievers who have heart disease can lead to serious and sometimes fatal results. To be on the safe side, you should always have your Golden tested for his disease before you plan on breeding.

Characteristics Of Reputable Breeders

When you decide to get a new Golden Retriever puppy, the first choice you will face is where to get your puppy from. No matter how hard you try, it’s nearly impossible to know whether or not the puppy you are buying will grow up to be healthy and strong. In order to even assume that your puppy will grow up to be healthy, you’ll need to trust the individual you get your Golden from.

There are three options available to you, in terms of breeders. You should carefully think about each one, as they all will vary. Below are the three options you have to choose from, and a little bit of information to help you make this very important decision.

Dealer or pet shop
A pet shop is simply the worst place that you can get your Golden Retriever puppy. The puppies they have for sale here are bred poorly, and raised in poor locations to say the least. At these types of places, the puppies are thought of as a profit and nothing more. There is little to no emphasis on quality here either – as pet shops prefer quantity over qualify.

Due to the way the puppies are bred and raised, pet shops make quite a bit of profit. With there being so little that goes into the breeding and care of the puppies, pet shops make a lot of money. They mainly rely on impulse buying, not giving you a lot of time to evaluate the puppies that they have for sale. If you’re looking for an addition to your family, and a puppy that you know is healthy, you’d be better off looking somewhere else for your puppy.

Backyard breeders
Backyard breeders are considered to be yet another poor choice for your puppy. Almost all backyard breeders are people who own a few Golden’s and find it to be fun to breed their female for the fact of having puppies, or breed her once or twice before they decide to go ahead and get her spayed. Backyard breeders don’t look for quality or go out of their way to care for their litters, as they are more or less breeding to make money – and nothing more.

Normally, backyard breeders know very little about the breed in general, and even less about how to properly care for their Golden Retrievers. Backyard breeders normally aren’t familiar with the problems associated with breeding, and most could care less. Their only goal here is to breed Golden Retriever puppies. Once the puppies have been bred, their remaining goal is to sell the puppies as fast as they can – for the highest possible price.

Hobby breeders
A hobby breeder is the ideal way to get your Golden puppy. Hobby breeders are loyal, committed, and think of their pups as more than just a hobby. Although they do make money breeding, they could honestly care less. Hobby breeders care more about the quality of their puppies than anything else, and they commit themselves to helping you get the best Golden Retriever pup possible.

Hobby breeders accept responsibility for each one of their puppies, and they stand behind each and every one of their pups. If you want the best pup you can get for your money, you need to visit a hobby breeder. They very rarely produce poor quality Golden Retriever puppies, as they care a lot about quality. If you get your Golden puppy from a hobby breeder, you can rest assured that you getting a healthy puppy from the start.

Bedding For Your Golden

Bedding for your Golden Retriever is very important, as this is where he will be spending quite a bit of time – especially at night. The ideal bedding for your Golden should be a natural fiber, such as wool, as wool absorbs most moisture and will keep your companion warm. When you get your blanket, you can try thrift stores, as they aren’t very expensive. You don’t want to buy an expensive blanket, for the fact that Golden Retrievers love to chew. They can chew or tear the blanket in no time at all, which would make an expensive blanket a waste of money.

When bringing your Golden puppy home, he may be a little upset having to leave his mom and the others of his litter. The scents and memories that he come to know and love are now being replaced with totally new ones. If you provide a towel for your Golden to sleep with, it may help to ease him a bit. Towels are a great way to remind Golden puppies of their mom and their litter, which will help them to sleep and relax.

If you are planning to have your Golden Retriever sleep with you, you should be ready to get up in the middle of the night and take him outside to use the bathroom. You should keep his food and water near his bedding at all times, so if he gets hungry or thirsty he can get what he needs. Then, you should planning on taking him out around an hour or so after he has eaten.

If you plan to leave your Golden Retriever outdoors, you’ll obviously need to use a different style of bedding. Doghouses are essential for Golden’s who stay outdoors, as it helps to keep them warm and free of weather. Inside of the doghouse on the other hand, most people tend to use straw so the Golden can make a bed out of it. You can also use a blanket or quilt as well, so that your Golden can wrap himself up in it should he get cold.

You can also use wooden shavings as well, as most Golden’s tend to like them. Newspapers work good as well, as they give your Golden something to lay on besides a wooden floor. Although doghouses work great for outdoor dogs, you should take your dog for walks on a daily basis and let him join you in activities that he finds enjoyable. This way, you can build a unique and lasting friendship with your pet. Golden Retrievers can quickly become the best friend you have ever had – as long as you take care of them. Making sure that have the proper bedding is a great place to start.

Characteristics Of The Golden Retriever

Almost all breeds of dogs are group oriented, as they need to interact with other species of their group to remain secure. Golden Retrievers, in particular, have been bred over the years to be geared more towards people. They make great guide dogs for the blind, friends for younger children, and even assistants for those who love to hunt. Due to the way they have been bred, they need to interact with people on a frequent basis.

They are merciful dogs at heart, and will tolerate several mistakes from you all the while wanting nothing more than you to acknowledge the fact that they are there and pat them on the head. Further proving that Golden Retrievers aim to please, is the fact that they were the first three dogs to obtain the Obedience Trial Championships – which is quite a statement indeed.

With Golden’s being so people oriented, it’s very important that they live with their owners. When you do any type of family activity, you should make sure that your Golden is included. Even though they don’t normally bark a lot, they will start barking if they get bored. Once a Golden Retriever is fully grown and becomes stout, he will enjoy many types of activities such as hiking, walking, hunting, jogging, and many other types of physical activity.

If you start your Golden Retriever puppy out early with exposure to kids, he will grow to become better than ever will kids. Although they can be very friendly around young kids, they can still knock them over or tend to want to lick them in the face. No matter how great your Golden Retriever may be around kids, you’ll never want to leave your dog and your kids alone. Even though Golden’s have a great temperament, a child can accidentally poke him or pull his tail and cause him to retaliate via his natural instinct.

All Golden Retrievers love the water, and choose to get wet any chance they get. If you have a pond or other source of water on your land, you can expect your Golden Retriever to get into it whenever he gets the chance. They are also drawn to mud, and will get themselves dirty on a frequent basis. Once your Golden is full grown, you can count on bathing him every couple of days.

During the summer, you’ll need to make sure that your Golden Retriever has plenty of moving air, shade, and water. They like the heat, although it normally isn’t good for them. As long as you take care of your Golden and don’t let him over exert himself, he should be just fine even in the hottest days that summer can dish out.