If you have recently gotten a Golden Retriever or you are thinking of getting one then you’re probably wondering how to keep it happy.
So, how do you keep a Golden Retriever happy? To keep your Golden Retriever happy there are lots of things you need to do. The main ones are to give it an hour of exercise every day, to give it lots of training, to give it lots of attention, to keep it occupied and to take it to the vets when you’re supposed to for regular check-ups.
There are actually a lot of ways to give your Golden Retriever exercise, attention and to keep it occupied. In the following sections, I will mention a number of tips that will help you to give your Golden Retriever each of those things.
Ways to give your Golden Retriever exercise
Golden Retrievers are a breed that is meant to get a lot of exercise on a daily basis. When they do not get enough exercise they can behave abnormally and develop behavioral issues. So, it is important to make sure that yours is able to get exercise if it is a healthy adult.
Generally, it is recommended for Golden Retrievers to get at least an hour of exercise per day as healthy adults. Puppies are generally recommended to get 5 minutes of exercise per day per month of age (source).
Thankfully, there are a number of things that you can do to make the exercise that you give to your Golden Retriever more effective.
Below I will mention some ways that you can exercise your Golden Retriever and some ways to make it more efficient.
The most obvious way to give your Golden Retriever exercise is to walk it. You might find that your Golden Retriever will still have energy even after an hour’s walk, if it does, you could try making the walk more challenging for it.
You can do make it more challenging by walking it further, walking it more quickly, walking it in a hilly area, you could let it loose at the dog park (if you can get it to come back reliably) or you could put a weight vest on it that weighs no more than 10% of its body weight.
Another way to wear it out quickly would be to get it to play fetch which is effective because it gets dogs to do a lot of running without much rest. It will also help to improve your relationship with your Golden Retriever since it will get ti used to interacting with you in a positive way and it can actually help it to listen to you more easily.
You can watch the video below for some tips on how to teach it fetch.
Walk it with other dogs
You could also walk your Golden Retriever with other dogs.
By doing this you will be able to get it to wear itself out more quickly since it will be doing more exercise by playing with the other dogs. It will also help to get it to socialize which can help to improve its behavior.
Teach it to swim
You could also teach your Golden Retriever to swim.
By doing this you will be able to get it to do a lot of exercise since the act of swimming requires it to move its legs around quickly in order to stay afloat. It also works well in the summer since it will help to keep it cool.
Use a dog walker
If you are not always able to give your Golden Retriever exercise yourself, one option would be to get a dog walker to do it for you on days that you cannot do it. There are apps you can download now that will let you find a dog walker in your area.
Give it attention and keep it occupied
You’ll also need to give your Golden Retriever lots of attention and to find numerous ways to keep it occupied. Below I will mention some ways that you can do so.
Tug of war
One way to keep your Golden Retriever happy is to play tug of war with it. Most Golden Retrievers love to play it so you’ll likely find that yours will enjoy playing it a lot. It is also a good way to keep it entertained when at home since you don’t need too much room to do it.
Another way to keep it occupied would be to give it training since it helps to keep it mentally and physically stimulated.
By giving your Golden Retriever training you will be able to prevent it from doing things that you don’t want it to do or that might be dangerous for it. You will also be able to improve your relationship with your Golden Retriever since it will get it to look to you for direction and it will be able to prevent dominating behavior.
It would help to start by training it to do simple tasks such as to sit in an environment without many distractions. Then it would help to build up to training it to do more challenging things gradually.
Lots of toys
Another thing you can do to keep your Golden Retriever occupied is to give it lots of toys to play with. By doing this you will be able to keep its focus on something you don’t mind it focusing on instead of something like your sofa. If your Golden Retriever is going through the teething stage then it is especially important to give it lots of toys to play with since it will naturally want to chew things at this stage.
You can also keep your Golden Retriever occupied by giving it puzzles to solve. There are toys that you can buy that are designed to make your Golden Retriever think about how to get to the treats inside. This can help to keep your Golden Retriever focused on it for a longer time period. The only issue is that once your Golden Retriever has figured it out it can become less interesting so be sure to get one that is a bit more challenging.
Give it chews
You could also give it chews to chew on as a way to keep it occupied. There are also some that are designed to calm it down that you might want to have around for when you think that your Golden Retriever might start to misbehave.
If you think that you won’t be able to keep your Golden Retriever occupied while you are not around then something that you could consider would be to take it to a doggy daycare.
Keep your Golden Retriever cool in the summer
Golden Retrievers can get hot in the summer. Below are some things you can do to keep it cool when the weather heats up.
The first thing that you can do is to groom it around once a week. By grooming it you will be able to remove any loose fur that it has which will help to keep it cool by allowing the air to penetrate its fur.
Don’t shave it
You might think that shaving the fur off your Golden Retriever would help to keep it cool but it will actually have the effect of making it hotter and you could give it heatstroke. This is because the skin is not supposed to be in direct contact with the suns rays and the fur is meant to help regulate its temperature.
Give it access to water and shade
It would also help to give it access to water, shade and a cool room throughout the day.
Teach it to swim
As mentioned earlier teaching your Golden Retriever to swim is a good way to exercise it in the summer since it requires a lot of effort and the water will help to keep it cool. However, it is important not to let it be out in the sun for too long when it is hot since it could cause it to get heatstroke even when swimming.
Exercise in morning or evening
When it’s hot outside it’s important to avoid the sunlight as much as possible. This means that it would be better to give it exercise while it is still cool outside in the morning or when the sun has set in the evening.
Use air con
If you have air conditioning then you could also keep your Golden Retriever cool by setting the air conditioning to be at a lower temperature.
Things to consider
If you want to keep your Golden Retriever happy it’s important to take it to the vets for regular check-ups so that it can stay healthy.
If your Golden Retriever is still a puppy, it will need more attention. However, because its bones and joints are still developing it will also not be able to get as much exercise as it could cause damage to it. It is generally recommended to give it 5 minutes of exercise for every month of age that it has. Instead, you could stimulate it by playing with it and training it.
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