Flat-Coated RetrieverCare

The harsh, straight coat is a serious shedder.

Described by all who meet him as cheerful, optimistic and good-humored, the Flat-Coat excels as a family companion. He requires regular vigorous exercise, however, due to his working heritage. Dog sports such as obedience, agility and hunt tests provide both mental and physical exercise. Among Sporting breeds, the Flat-Coat is easy to maintain, needing only occasional brushing and bathing.

nutrition &FEEDING

Depending on the size of your dog as an adult you are going to want to feed them a formula that will cater to their unique digestive needs through the various phases of their life. Many dog food companies have breed-specific formulas for small, medium, large and giant breeds. The Flat-Coated Retriever is a large breed and has a lifespan of 10 to 12 years.

What you feed your dog is an individual choice, but working with your veterinarian and/or breeder will be the best way to determine frequency of meals as a puppy and the best adult diet to increase his longevity. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.


A comb and slicker brush should be part of your grooming tools to keep this dog’s coat in top shape and looking good. Their strong fast-growing nails should be trimmed regularly with a nail clipper or grinder to avoid overgrowth, splitting and cracking. Their ears should be checked regularly to avoid a buildup of wax and debris which can result in an infection. Teeth should be brushed regularly.

coat length Medium
grooming Occasional Grooming

energy &EXERCISE

Dogdom’s champion tail wagers, Flat-Coats are among the happiest of all breeds. They mature slowly; some owners say they never grow up at all. They’ve been called Peter Pan dogs, retaining a puppyish taste for rambunctious mischief into old age. This can be either delightful or exasperating, depending on your tolerance for such monkeyshines. Flat-Coat fans are proud that their breed has never split into “field lines” and “show lines.” A good specimen will retrieve a duck or a show ribbon with equal aplomb.

energy level Lots of Exercise

Flat-Coated Retriever &HEALTH

Like all breeds there may be some health issues, like hip dysplasia and eye disease. Some dogs may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Flat-Coated Retrievers are healthy dogs.

Working with a responsible breeder, those wishing to own a Flat-Coated Retriever can gain the education they need to know about specific health concerns within the breed. Good breeders utilize genetic testing of their breeding stock to reduce the likelihood of disease in their puppies.