The Golden Retriever is one of the most beloved breeds in the world. They’re known for their playfulness and kindness, and for being absolutely adorable.
If you’re planning to welcome a Golden Retriever into your family home, you’ll naturally have many questions. Are they good with kids? Do they make good family dogs?
At Barks In The Park, we’ve laid out this detailed guide to answer these questions for you. We’ve taken a look at why this breed is great for families. We’ve also given you tips for ensuring your furry friend and kids become best buds.
Table of Contents
- 1 What Makes A Great Family Dog?
- 2 What Makes Golden Retrievers Good Family Dogs?
- 3 Are Golden Retrievers Good With Babies?
- 4 Getting Your Dog Used To Babies
- 5 Are Golden Retrievers Good With Toddlers?
- 6 Getting Your Dog Used To Toddlers
- 7 Are Golden Retrievers Good With Older Children?
- 8 Is Your Family Ready For A Dog?
- 9 Teaching Your Kids About Dogs
- 10 Final Thoughts
- 11 FAQs
What Makes A Great Family Dog?
Essentially, a good family dog is a dog that has the right temperament for family life. Each dog breed has its own characteristics and personality traits.
There are five main personality types in dogs:
- Curious and fearless
Clearly, dogs with social or playful temperaments are best suited to families. Canines with the other three personality types are not ideal as family dogs. Luckily, Golden Retrievers tend to have social and playful temperaments.
If you’re planning to adopt a Golden Retriever from a shelter, you may need to be more careful. Older dogs in shelters may be more aggressive due to their past experiences. Make sure you tell the staff that you have children at home. This way, they can ensure they find you a great family pet.
What Makes Golden Retrievers Good Family Dogs?
So, we’ve established that Golden Retrievers make good family dogs. But why are Golden Retrievers good with kids? Let’s take a look at some of the personality traits that make the Golden Retriever dog breed ideal for families:
Golden Retrievers are very sensitive and intelligent. This means they are quick to understand what is expected of them. This makes them highly trainable. It means that it’s fairly easy to teach them certain skills and behaviors they need to learn to be around children.
Adaptability is an important trait as it means your pooch can alter its behavior in new circumstances. As Golden Retrievers are intelligent, they have a good amount of adaptability.
They’re able to understand when new situations require them to act differently. This is particularly helpful when introducing a new baby into the household.
Golden Retrievers are very affectionate dogs and form strong bonds with their families. They enjoy being in the company of their family members, including children. They’re also energetic and playful, which makes them great companions for young children.
Golden Retrievers are relatively large dogs but have a good amount of self-awareness. This means they’re aware of their strength and size and can be gentle when playing.
The Golden Retriever was originally bred as a hunting dog. Due to this, they have a soft mouth for carrying game and other animals. This means they’re unlikely to bite; if they do nip, it shouldn’t cause any injuries.
The Golden Retriever does have quite a loud bark. However, it’s rare for them to bark without a good reason. So, it’s unlikely that your pup will regularly wake up your sleeping children. They mainly bark to alert their owners to the presence of strangers.
Are Golden Retrievers Good With Babies?
It’s not usually a good idea to simultaneously introduce a Golden Retriever puppy and a baby into your home. Imagine trying to train your new canine companion at the same time as looking after a newborn baby. When you have a baby, it’s best to wait until it’s a toddler before getting a Golden Retriever.
If you already have a Golden and are bringing a new baby home, then there are a few steps you need to take. Basically, you need to introduce your Golden Retriever to the baby in a similar way that you would introduce it to other dogs.
Firstly, you should allow your dog to smell items that contain your baby’s scent. This allows the dog to become accustomed to the smell. You should also ensure your baby’s crib is in place before you bring your baby home. This allows your pooch to get used to it being there.
Once the baby is home, bring your dog into the room while your baby is in the crib. Let your dog discover the baby and approach the crib while you supervise.
The Golden Retriever is a naturally affectionate dog breed. Once it’s used to your baby, you can expect it to spend a lot of time curled up next to the crib. This is how Golden Retrievers bond with babies.
Remember, you should always supervise your dog when it’s around your baby. This is mainly in case it accidentally knocks over the crib.
Getting Your Dog Used To Babies
There are a few other steps you can take to make sure that your pup behaves appropriately around your baby:
- Sit and stay: you should teach your dog the sit and stay command early on. This allows you to get your dog out of the way if there are any urgent issues with your baby.
- Set boundaries: your Golden Retriever needs to know where it can and can’t go. It must be trained never to climb into the crib. It should never be allowed into the baby’s bedroom. Or, it should only be allowed in with you supervising.
- No jumping: your dog should be taught not to jump up at people. This is important to prevent it from jumping at you while you’re carrying your baby.
Are Golden Retrievers Good With Toddlers?
Golden Retrievers are good with toddlers as long as they’ve had some obedience training and socialization. If your children have been raised alongside your puppy, they’ll already be used to each other once they are toddlers.
If you have toddlers and are thinking of getting a Golden Retriever, this will also be fine. However, toddlers tend to be a bit rough with dogs. They might do things like pet them too hard or pull their tails.
This can result in your dog responding with barks or nips. So, you need to make sure that you supervise toddlers when they’re around your dog. After a while, your Golden Retriever and your toddlers will most likely become best pals.
Getting Your Dog Used To Toddlers
Teaching an adult Golden Retriever or a puppy how to behave around toddlers isn’t too complicated. It’s a matter of exposing them to various children and warning them if they behave incorrectly. When they behave correctly, you should reward them.
If you’re strapped for time, you could enroll your pooch in puppy training classes. This will help socialize them around children and provide them with mental stimulation.
Are Golden Retrievers Good With Older Children?
Golden Retrievers don’t tend to have any issues around older kids. In fact, Golden Retrievers love spending time playing with them. This is one of the reasons they make such good family dogs.
Your children will have a great time playing with your puppy. This gives your Golden Retriever some of the physical and mental stimulation it needs to be a happy and healthy dog.
As with all other dog breeds, Golden Retrievers require much care and attention. When your kids are older, you can pass on some of the responsibilities of dog ownership to them. This could be walking them, feeding them, and helping to groom them.
This is a great way to teach your children about responsibility. A good family dog has many benefits for the entire family, apart from just being adorable!
Is Your Family Ready For A Dog?
Welcoming a furry friend into your family home is one of the best experiences you can have. Your pup will undoubtedly bring you lots of love and joy, and help to keep you active. Still, not all families are equipped to have a dog.
Golden Retrievers are energetic and require plenty of mental and physical stimulation. If, for any reason, your family is unable to provide them with this, then a Golden Retriever isn’t the right puppy for you.
Looking after children is already very expensive and getting a dog is another financial burden. If your family cannot financially support a canine companion, you should wait until you’re able to.
Here are a few of the telltale signs that your family might not be ready for a Golden Retriever:
- You’ll have to hide your dog from your landlord
- There will be long periods when nobody will be at home
- A member of your family has told you that they don’t want a dog
- You live in a very small flat
- A member or members of your household are very elderly and can’t keep up with an energetic dog
Teaching Your Kids About Dogs
It’s vital that you teach your dog how to behave around your kids. It’s just as important that you teach your kids how to behave around your pooch. They should be taught to interact with your Golden Retriever calmly, securely, and safely.
Here are some essential things that you should teach your children when you get a dog:
- They shouldn’t approach the dog at certain times. This includes when it’s eating, sleeping, or chewing a bone.
- They should always pet it gently and never pull its tail or hair.
- They shouldn’t touch sensitive areas of the dog, such as its eyes.
- They should be aware that all dogs are different. They shouldn’t behave the same way around strange dogs as they do around their own.
- They should be taught to respect your dog’s possessions and space. They shouldn’t be climbing into your dog’s bed or hiding its toys.
Remember, you should always supervise young children when they’re around dogs. The unexpected can still occur even if your canine is very well-trained. There should always be a responsible adult present to deal with any unexpected situations.
When you have a family, welcoming a dog into your home is incredibly exciting. It’s also a big commitment, and you must ensure that the breed you choose will get along with your kids. This is why Golden Retrievers are such a good choice. They love children and become their lifelong companions.
If you’re asking yourself other questions like – ‘are Golden Retrievers good hunting dogs?‘ – then be sure to check out our other articles about this breed. At Barks In The Park, we can give you everything you need to know about the delightful Golden Retriever.
Do Golden Retrievers like to cuddle up with kids?
Golden Retrievers are incredibly affectionate and friendly dogs. This means that they absolutely love a cuddle. It’s common to see them snuggled up with young kids, which is one way they’ll bond with your children.
Are Golden Retrievers clingy with kids?
Golden Retrievers love to give and receive attention. This means that they do tend to be quite clingy. This goes for the whole family. If you and your kids aren’t up for constant petting and playing, this breed probably isn’t for you.
Do Golden Retrievers choose a favorite family member?
Some other breeds, such as Cairn Terriers, Shiba Inus, and Basenjis, choose one family member as their favorite. They tend to ignore other family members and are only loyal to their favorite. Golden Retrievers are the exact opposite. They adore every family member equally and love spending time with everyone!