As far as breed popularity goes, Golden Retrievers are near the top of the list. Because the breed is intelligent and very eager to please, they are one of the most trainable breeds of dog in existence. Golden Retrievers, besides being wonderful family pets and doting companion animals, are employed in a variety of uses as seeing eye dogs, therapy dogs, and drug-sniffing dogs. What these retrievers were bred for, however, is hunting.
Since the breed is so popular for such varied uses, they are often bred with different traits in mind. When seeking out a new hunting companion Golden Retriever, it is best to search for a breeder who also hunts and has worked to keep traits beneficial to the task in the bloodline of their litters. A reputable breeder who has kept field work in mind for the dogs the breed will likely produce a retriever that excels in the hunting environment.
If you’ve ever played a game of fetch with your Golden Retriever, you know that retrieving comes naturally to the breed. They have a strong sense of smell and an even stronger homing instinct, returning immediately with their ball, a stick, or the fresh kill. Some people prefer hounds for hunting because they offer more varied assistance on the hunt, whereas Golden Retrievers are not flushing dogs.
Since the breed is so trainable and are not relied upon for flushing, it is considerably less difficult to work Golden Retrievers up to their full ability, unlike other popular breeds of hunting dog. Standard obedience commands are the only place to start with any training activity. Sit, stay, fetch, and release are all commands that are imperative to the hunting process. Teaching these commands will also make your life with a Golden Retriever much smoother!
Golden Retrievers can be a useful work or hunting companion, but will be happy to come home and spend time with the family as well. This is an attribute that is very much appreciated by enthusiasts of the breed. When trained properly, your dog will know which behaviors are acceptable in the home and witch are acceptable on the hunt.
While most Golden Retriever owners have their dogs as nothing more than a loving, energetic companion, the breed is still very popular with hunters – and for good reason. The ease of training and the boundless desire to please their owners makes this dog a wonderful pet and an impeccably skillful hunter.
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