Living with Golden Retrievers

Six Very Important Questions to Ask Before You Commit to Adopting

As much as it may hurt some people to accept, a Golden Retriever is not the dog for every family.  Nor is it the dog for all single people.  This large and energetic breed is a very special creation that requires a very special breed of owner.

To learn whether you qualify, ask yourself the following questions (answer honestly!):


  1. Are you adopting a Golden Retriever because you plan to use him as a watchdog?


Answer yes and start looking for a different breed.  This particular dog is anything but a watchdog.  A pet legendary for its gentle, friendly ways, the Golden Retriever doesn’t make a good watchdog.  Oh, sure, he’ll be barking at the stranger at the front door, but notice that tail?  It’s wagging at full speed asking, “Will you play with me?”  What a threat to would-be bad guys!

  1. Do you have the time, patience and energy to devote to this breed?


I’ve already talked about the vibrancy of this dog.  You really need to do some soul-searching before answering this question.  In terms of your time and energy, the Golden Retriever is demanding in his own delightful way.


  1. Do you travel much? Are you willing to have him travel with you?


Here’s one question many people don’t’ consider.  He’s not the type of dog who is happy spending time in a kennel.  Many motels these days accept pets, but finding these accommodations may take some advance planning.


  1. Are you willing to make the long-term commitment involved in owning a Golden Retriever?


This isn’t just a lark that you experience for a couple of days or months.  The average lifespan of one of these dogs is about 12 years.

  1. Do you have the room – inside and out – for this breed? Do you live near a park?


While this dog is quite adaptable, it’s still essential to both his physical and mental well-being that he exercises regularly.


  1. Can you afford him?


The initial purchase price of the puppy or dog is only the beginning.  They’ll be expenses for supplies, veterinarian bills and food – and remember, this is a good-sized dog.  Good-sized dogs like to eat – a lot.  Consider what this may cost in weekly and monthly food costs.  Can your budget sustain this?

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