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The "Golden" is believed to have originated in England in the mid-nineteenth century. The AKC description of the breed says that the Golden Retriever can be 22-24 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 60-75 lbs on average depending upon sex. The shape of the muzzle should be large and powerful with a well-defined stop. The chest should be broad and body athletic and muscular. The coat color can range from a very pale off-white to a dark gold. The coat texture should be soft with a waterproof undercoat and ample feathering about the legs.
Personality wise the golden is very sweet and even-tempered. These are highly affectionate dogs which make good family pets, but only if the time is given to training and exercise. Golden puppies are notoriously active and require consistent training and exercise if they are to settle down to become good family dogs. The goldens' main fault is their tendency to be "hyper" if not trained and excercised properly. This is not a backyard dog, nor a dog that does well alone for long periods of time. Goldens are very intelligent and easy to train and want to be where their people are. If properly socialized and trained they are a go- anywhere dog that everyone loves to have around.
Grooming requirements are not too involving. Depending upon the length of the coat, a weekly brushing and an occassional bath usually keep the coat in good condition.
When shopping for a puppy or adult dog be sure to ask for a referral from the Yankee Golden Retriever Club #413-283-5744. Breeders referred by this club adhere to strict codes of ethics requiring them to carefully screen their breeding stock for genetic and temperment faults. Golden are prone to hip dysplasia, eye disorders and heart abnormalities. Good breeders will have clearances for all of these on both parents.