Golden retrievers are fun and will easily make someone consider keeping them. It is why you would want to own one at the moment. When you opt for getting a golden retriever as a pet, it is crucial that you know how to care for such a pet. In this guide, we will look at golden retriever care that every pet owner should know.
Most of the things we cover in the guide are simple and it should not take long before you can adequately care for your pet. Without wasting time, let us get into the guide already.
Setting Up the Pet in Your Home
Let us say you are bringing a new golden retriever puppy into your home, what should you do? The first thing you have to do is make your home safe for the puppy. Even if it is not a puppy, you have to consider making your home generally safer for a pet.
To make your home safe, consider removing cords that the pet might chew, or taking glass items off the low tables. Always consider putting away items that the pet might try to take. This includes your shoes too.
Another thing would be providing your golden retriever with a place to sleep. As much as some people might envision sleeping with their dogs in the same bed, it is always good for it to have its own bedding.
When choosing its bedding, get a crate that would fit a golden retriever. This is especially when buying an adult dog. Check out several crate options in the market to find the right one for your pet.
Still as part of golden retriever care, get the pet food and water bowls. You need to get bowls that will not tip over easily when the pet is using them. No need to invest in ceramic bowls as the golden would likely pick it up and drop it leading to breakages.
There is the need to get a leash and collar for your pet. These two come in handy when you have to take the pet for a walk. It can be hard to walk the pet without a leash. Depending on the dog’s behavior, sometimes you might have to get a no-pull harness for ease of controlling the pet.
Feeding the Golden Retriever
Now that you have the pet in the home, it is important that you also feed it. At this point, consider getting high quality dry dog food for your pet. If you are not sure about where to start, it is time to consult with your vet.
Keep in mind that not all food types might be good for your pet. Some might contain ingredients that are likely to trigger allergies or stomach upsets. We would also recommend that you read the food label to see if the ingredients are likely to trigger allergies. Always opt for food from trusted brands.
The food that you give to your pet will depend on its age and activity level. When you decide to take on the challenge of golden retriever care, you will quickly notice that the food that adult dogs eat is not the same as senior dogs.
Senior dogs are no longer active, so they need less food or food with lower calories. As for adults and puppies, they need more calories to remain active.
The frequency of feeding the golden retriever also varies with age. If it is a puppy, you are advised to feed it three times a day while if it is a an adult or senior, two times a day is enough.
The treats can also be a good choice for those still looking for tips about golden retriever care. Keep in mind that treats should not be used to replace food. The treats are only good when the dog has achieved something worth the reward. Most people would use the treat as a reward for good behavior.
Ensure that the pet can always access fresh water. Water is not like food that has to be limited. Giving the pet enough water will help eliminate any cases of dehydration.
Handling the Golden Retriever
Still on golden retriever care, we also have to look at golden retriever handling. You are likely to find yourself petting the dog more often. As much as this is encouraged, do not touch its face. Many dogs do not like their faces being touched.
Rather than touching the pet’s face consider patting it on its side gently. You can use gently but firm pats more often. This is often a sign to your pet that you are ready to play. The pet will rise knowing it is time to spend that good energy it has been reserving.
We also recommend that you consider using dog toys to engage the golden retriever. This is the part where you teach the pet games such as fetch or tug. Always make sure that you have the right toy for the game.
Look at the materials used to make the toy. If it is a chew toy, it should be strong enough so that the pet does not chew through it with ease. Chewing through the toy can make the pet swallow some of the fragments, which are choking hazards.
To handle your dog better, it might be time to teach it a few simple commands. The dog should be able to sit, lay down, stay, come and more commands. If the dog knows these commands, it would be easier to keep it safe in different situations.
The dog should also know how to walk on a leash. This can only happen if you train it properly and walk the dog more often.
Training classes are not expensive, so there should be no reason why you have untrained dog in your home.
Another thing would be to teach your kids on how to interact with the pet. This helps a lot in minimizing any incidents where the children start to poke the dog.
Washing the Golden Retriever
As part of golden retriever care, you also have to consider bathing your pet. You only have to bath your pet when it is necessary. In most cases, you might have to bathe the golden retriever dog once every six to eight weeks. When you wash the pet too often, it might lead to more skin problems.
Washing the pet too frequently robs it of its natural skin oils. This means that the pet would end up with a dry skin. This will lead to more shedding and other problems you do not have to deal with in the first place.
Before you can wash the pet, it is best to get the supplies ready. This means that you have to buy the best dog shampoo, a brush, towel, and other important supplies. When you have the right supplies, it becomes easier to handle your pet’s grooming needs.
When washing the pet, consider using lukewarm water. No need to wash your pet in cold water. Some people use the garden hose when the weather is warm or hot. Well, if the pet enjoys its baths, you should find it easy to give it a good rinse.
If you have to choose the dog shampoo, make sure it is meant for dogs. Do not use shampoo meant for humans. This is because such a shampoo would have chemicals that are likely to irritate the pet’s skin.
Always rinse the dog very well to remove any soap that might be in the coat. If the soap is left unrinsed, it will dry on the pet’s skin thus causing itchiness over time. So, take the time to rinse the pet in clean water leaving it with a clean coat always.
Cleaning the Golden Retriever’s Bedding
Just as you like to keep your beddings clean, the pet also likes it that way. That is why we recommend that you clean the dog’s bed as part of golden retriever care.
Start by cleaning its blankets and stuffed toys. Most of these would easily clean well in a washing machine. Well, shake them outdoors first before tossing them into the washing machine. This helps in removing any extra fur off the blankets before putting them into the washer.
It is also good if you can vacuum the bed more often. Vacuuming is essential for removing the dust and fur from the bed. It will also help in generally keeping the bed fresh and ready for the pet to enjoy another night on the bed.
It might also be necessary for you to wash the crate tray where applicable. This is because the tray collects the waste from the pet. As such, soapy water will come in handy to clean the tray before setting it back into the crate.
The best golden retriever care routine does not have to be complicated. Most of the time, they are things you would do for any other dog breed. All you need to do is make the dog to be as comfortable as possible. The last thing you want is for the dog to be unkempt or malnourished when these are simple things you can achieve in no time.