Golden Retrievers are active dogs who need vigorous exercise at least twice a day. As a working dog breed, Goldens love to have a job to do, and they will do it joyfully whether its hiking or playing fetch in the backyard. True to their name, Goldens love retrieving items and they also enjoy a pleasant walk, jog, or swim in the pool, pond, or lake. Exercise is a must with this breed, and if you fail to provide your Golden Retriever with the amount of activity he needs to be physically and mentally tired out, he may relieve his anxiety and boredom through destructive behaviors, creating a whole other level of problems.
As is typical of retriever breeds, the Golden is “mouthy,” meaning they love to carry something around in their mouths and greet you with the item as a gift. Items of interest can range from a favorite ball or squeaky toy to a dirty sock or shirt. Understand that your Golden is satisfying both his need to carry an item and his need to please his owner by bringing you whatever object he can fit in his mouth.
The Golden Retriever has folded over ears which provide the perfect environment for bacterial or yeast infection to grow. Goldens are infamous for their ear infections, and as such, you should check your dog’s ears weekly for any signs of irritation, redness, or smelly odor, which may mean an infection is starting. If your Golden is in the water often, check his ears each time he swims as wet ears are a welcome sign for infections. Use a gentle, pH-balanced ear cleaner to prevent infections, and if you think your dog has one, get him to the veterinarian as soon as possible for medical attention. Ear infections can be painful, so do not wait too long to get your Golden the help he needs.
Don’t forget to check your Golden Retriever’s teeth and brush them at least twice weekly to remove plaque and tartar buildup and to remove bacteria that may cause serious dental problems. To prevent bad breath and gum disease, try to brush your dog’s teeth daily.