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How To Train Your Golden Retriever

By Edited Oct 18, 2016 2 6

Golden Retriever Puppies

Golden Retriever Puppies
Credit: Photo by Jarapet

Golden Retrievers are amongst the cutest and loveliest nature dog breeds. They have a lovely temperament, are good with children, very loyal to their owners and crave human attention. They are happier in a household where they can enjoy a lot of interaction with the family, as they don't like being left alone for longer periods and much prefer to live inside the house than outside. They have fun swimming, playing fetch and other dog sports.

Like many other dogs, Goldies are not immune to humans neglect or mistreatments. If you are considering to adopt one of these wonderful animals you can always visit your local Golden Retriever Rescue.

Clicker training

How to train your dog

Goldies can start training as young as 7-8 weeks.

Training is very rewarding for an owner, because they are intelligent, obedient and learn quickly. Saying that, it’s not completely challenge free and if you are inexperienced, can’t give sufficient time or are not patient enough to train your dog properly, you may want to use the services of a professional trainer.

If you have just adopted a puppy or are considering getting one, read a few books specific to this breed or visit one of the Golden Retriever forums available on internet to learn great information and advices from Goldies owners and experts.

Treats to train your puppy
Try to train your dog away from meals, or he may not respond to treat training as he should. Give your puppy a tasty, good quality treat, something that he really likes, but that you only use for training. The idea behind treat training, is to create an association between the good behaviour and that special reward.
Only reward after accomplishment of the command, but do not reward if the dog seems excited or agitated, wait until he calms down.
Let him smell the treat first from your hand, then move it above his nose and over his head, at which point he should naturally come into a sitting position. If he is calm and controlled, offer him the treat.
 
Toilet training
If you have an outdoor space, it is advisable to teach your Golden Retriever to urinate or defecate outside, you will need to let him out every 2-3 hours.
If this is not an option, you may want to consider paper or litter box training.
Once you decide which method to follow, stick to it until the puppy is fully trained, then you can eventually change to going outside.
 
Clicker training
One popular training method is the clicker training, which aims at rewarding the desirable behaviour. Once the dog does the right thing, his trainer makes a 'click' sound to confirm the right behaviour, by pushing and releasing the spring at the end of the clicker. Give a small treat.
Bad behaviour can be corrected by clicking the good behaviour.

Some trainers prefer to use words like 'yes', which can also work, but are not found as effective as the clicker sound, which is easier to hear.

Dog Training Clickers

Sleeping habits training
If you want your Golden Retriever to sleep when you sleep, there are a few things that will help. Choose a suitable sleeping place for your dog, make his bed comfortable with a blanket, put some toys and treats on his bed.

Some dogs owners do let their dogs sleeping in bed with them, others don't find this habit very hygienic; whatever you decide, it's up to you, but to avoid bad habits, which are difficult to break, it would be better to at least get them used to sleep in their own bed first.

Teach your dog the going to bed command, it's useful also for when you want him to move away or have visitors.

Normally dogs adapt to your daily and nightly routine, but they won't sleep in during week-ends, just because you had a late night.

Make sure that your Retriever has enough exercise to make him tired. Up to 1 hour for puppies and 2-3 hours per day for adults.

Don't let your dog sleeping all day, otherwise he won't sleep at night. If he wakes up too early in the morning, try not to give too much attention or a treat, he will learn to wait for you.

Don't forget grooming
As soon as you bring home your puppy, start to groom him, that will facilitate your bonding with him. Golden Retrievers have long hair and if it's not regularly brushed, it will easily tangle and eventually cause a lot of problems. Clean his ears regularly with baby wipes to avoid infections and cut his toenail. For his teeth don't forget to get those special chews that help with his tooth cleaning and health.
 
Useful qualities 
Golden Retrievers are not only great family pets, but also fantastic service dogs, in many countries they are used as guide dogs for the blinds.  
Beautiful Golden Retriever
Credit: Maggie Smith

Conclusion

  1. You are the master and your dog is the animal and should be treated as such.
  2. Teach him to control his energy. Golden are very enthusiastic dogs and would love to jump on people if they are allowed, teach them early not to do that. Once this dog becomes an adult, he will be a large size and quite heavy, he could cause injury by jumping on people.
  3. Ensure he gets lot of exercise.
  4. Clicker training is very successful with this breed.
  5. Start the training form the basics: sit, stay, come.
  6. Keep the training lessons short, but frequent. A few minutes a day, several time per days would be ideal.
  7. Reward good behaviour.
  8. Be consistent.
  9. Give plenty of love and care.
  10. Enjoy this wonderful companion.
Golden Retrievers For Dummies
Amazon Price: $17.99 $2.38 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 18, 2016)
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Comments

May 9, 2014 6:31pm
probertson85
great article! i loved reading it. Thinking of getting one myself from rescue shelter
May 10, 2014 1:43am
Larah
Thank you for reading and commenting my article probertson85, I'm glad you have enjoyed it.
May 14, 2014 6:16pm
stuartseville
Great article...Had one myself many years ago. Beautiful dogs.
May 14, 2014 6:29pm
Larah
Thank you for your comment stuartseville, I don't actually have a dog, but if I had, Golden Retrievers would be at the top of my list. They are fantastic family pets.
May 23, 2014 4:26am
ologsinquito
These are such beautiful dogs and the puppies in the picture are so cute. I'm pinning this to my Dogs and Puppies board.
May 23, 2014 6:09am
Larah
Thank you for reading and commenting my article ologsinquito and also for pinning it.
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