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Golden Retriever head portrait outdoors.
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Golden Retrievers are one of America’s most popular breeds year after year. This beautiful, exuberant, and loving dog breed is a devoted companion. But there’s so much more to know about this lovable breed.

Golden Retrievers Trace Their History Back to Scotland

For decades, apocryphal stories were floating around that the Golden Retriever was descended from Russian circus dogs. This theory was debunked when the records of Lord Tweedmouth of Inverness in Scotland were released.

In 1864, Lord Tweedmouth purchased a “yellow retriever” named “Nous” and bred him to a liver-colored Tweed Water Spaniel named “Belle.” The Golden Retrievers we know today likely descended from Nous and Belle. Thank you, Lord Tweedmouth!

They Need Lots of Exercise

These active members of the Sporting Group make poor couch potatoes. Goldens are always ready for action, whether it’s a game of fetch, hiking, swimming, or other exercise. They’re natural athletes that excel at a variety of sports.

Golden Retriever fetching a ball on the beach.
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They’re a Hard-Working Breed

Golden Retrievers are used for everything from hunting to rescue and service dog work. Despite that playful, sometimes goofy demeanor, they learn quickly and can master a multitude of skills, including how to perform as search and rescue dogs at the site of a disaster.

Golden Retrievers Make Top-Notch Therapy Dogs

Goldens are often employed as therapy dogs to soothe and calm people. Goldens seem to have reserves of empathy and unconditional love. They can help calm and comfort almost anyone, from young children to elderly patients.

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They Often Stay Young at Heart

We’ve all seen that exuberant puppy behavior. That tends to last longer in Golden Retrievers than in other breeds. They mature slowly and can be playful and downright silly into adulthood.

Golden Retrievers Love to Eat

They’ll eat anything, from the dinner in their bowl to toys, paper, and crayons. If it’s out, it’s fair game. Goldens also tend to overeat, so savvy owners know to limit treats, carefully measure out food, and feed them only at mealtimes.

Golden Retrievers Are Naturally Mouthy

Like other retrievers, Goldens are likely to carry something around everywhere they go, such as sticks, toys, clothing, or whatever else isn’t tied down.

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When Carrying Objects, They’re Known For Their Soft Mouths

All retrievers must have a mouth “soft” enough to pick up and hold game (like ducks) without damaging them. The Golden’s mouth is so soft, it’s said they can carry a raw egg in their mouths without cracking the shell.

Goldens Shine in Dog Sports

As intelligent, athletic dogs, Goldens are exceptional competitors in dog sports like obedience, agility, dock diving, and more.

They’re a Perennially Popular Breed

The breed is perennially among the list of most popular dog breeds in the United States for decades. Their charm and appeal are simply timeless!

Related article: What Dog Is Right For Me? How to Choose the Perfect Breed
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