“I am totally biased and wouldn’t have any other breed but and this is a big but, they are not suitable for everyone. They are loving, intelligent, biddable, soft natured dogs who are good with children, cats and other dogs. However they need to be part of your family and share your house with you. They want to be with you all the time! They get bored quickly so you need to keep them busy, otherwise they will dig your garden and chew whatever they get hold of.

It should never be forgotten that they were bred to work and as not everyone has the time to train their dog, you have to stimulate them in other ways. They are natural retrievers so provide them with toys.

I believe all dogs should go to obedience classes, this is for both you and your dog to learn. They also need regular walks, even if you have a big garden, how would you feel if you never went out anywhere? Most Goldens love the car as long as a trip to the vet isn’t the only reason for the journey!

Goldens shed a lot of hair so you must be prepared to brush and comb your dog regularly (regularly doesn’t just mean once a week), so he doesn’t get matted and to prevent all the loose hair around the house and on your clothes. Please don’t think you are doing your dog a favour by shaving him in summer, their coat acts as insulation and helps to protect them from the sun and being sunburnt. If you haven’t got time to groom them, then get a short haired breed.

When the weather is hot my dogs lie on the tiles and enjoy a swim in the pool to keep cool.”

Goldens LOVE digging up the garden - as puppies they love to explore the world and one way is with their paws. Training a Golden is essential and with patience you can teach them to leave plants and areas alone. You may also want to try sprinkling some lemon grass essential oil in areas that you want them to avoid, they do not like the smell, planting some herbs in between plants also helps as the strong smells also repels them: try rosemary, thyme or other strong smelling herbs.

Goldens eating valuables or clothing - a simple way of avoiding losing your socks or items of clothing to a Golden is to make sure that they are out of reach, it is a good way to teach the human members of the family good housekeeping :)

Goldens Shed: Although you may be diligent - and should be - in grooming your dogs, they will shed large amounts of hair. When you live with a Golden you have to live with the hair on everything from furniture to clothes.

Yes they are the most amazing family dog but will they fit in to what your family want from a pet?

You should consider whether you have the energy and time to invest in the attention and time a Golden requires. In fact no matter what breed you plan on bringing into your family please do read some more about the breed and their behavior and needs before adopting.

If you want to sit on the couch and have a laid back companion at your feet, do not get a golden! They need attention and work otherwise they will get bored and take out their frustration and boredom on your garden, furniture or clothing.

Choosing the best dog breed for you - article on Ark Animal Centre

You may have your heart set on getting a puppy but do not discount the advantages of getting an older companion.

Older dogs will already be house trained and will be easier to settle into a routine. Older dogs will also not be as prone to chewing and or digging.

Although some older dogs may need a bit more health care it should not be a reason not to offer them a second chance, we all get old right?

Copyright Linn Currie

Some vets and or vet clinics who help animals in need.

Always find a vet that not only you trust but your dog does too.

We would like to thank the Orange Grove Vet - Erasmia Vet Clinic  - Oaklands Vet Clinic as well as the Fourways Vet Hospital for going the extra mile to help a Golden in need.

Are they the right breed for you and your family? Some things to consider before deciding on adopting a Golden What about adopting an older dog?

What you should know and consider before adoption

Goldens are people orientated dogs and need to be able to have contact with their family at all times. If you are not willing to have your animals live in your house as part of your family then DO NOT get a Golden. Be prepared to ensure that your Golden has a safe (adequately fenced and secure) area. Make sure that you Micro chip your Golden so that in the event that you need to find your dog it is made easier with a micro chip.  

Do not get two puppies from the same litter, they will bond with each other and not with you - you will also have double trouble with chewing and digging!

Goldens are loyal - loving playful and unbelievable companions to have as  part of your life