The Golden Retriever breed is a relatively new breed, the first true breed of the dog dating back to as recent as the beginning of the 1900's.
The Golden Retrievers were used mainly to retrieve waterfowl from the marshes and swamps for their hunter. Because of this they have an instinctive love of water and a very soft mouth, so that they would not damage the waterfowl. Their love of retrieving means they enjoy playing fetch with any family member.
The Golden Retriever is a relatively large, strongly built breed with a dense, water repelling coat. Their coats come in all shades of Gold from light cream to dark bronze. While beautiful, their fur does require regular brushing. However on the positive side, regular trips to the groomers are NOT necessary, as their shiny coats reflect dirt.
The temperament of the Golden Retriever is a hallmark of the breed, and is often described "kindly, friendly and confident". They are very smart dogs and do extremely well in obedience. The Golden's nature can also be active and playful. They are slow to mature and can be puppyish until three years of age, which can be both delightful and annoying. You may have to crate them when young to keep your house AND the dog safe. They also do require regular exercise (once their bones have finished growing). Overall Golden Retrievers are very loyal and friendly to everyone, and are generally friendly with the people they know and also strangers.
The Golden Retriever can be a great family dog and a wonderful companion!
If you'd like to know even more about the breed, check out the Golden Retriever Breed Council's website below.