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What did his parents look like?
One pretty big thing to point out is that you do NOT have just two styles of golden retrievers (conformation dogs with coat and field dogs with no coat). You have a very huge variety of dogs being bred in this very popular breed.
Majority of show lines have dogs bred to have coat. And this means that literally with show bred puppies, they will already have feathers coming off the backs of their legs and hocks and shaggy ears (show homes keep that trimmed) and very thick puppy coats.
Outside of that majority - you have a wide spread of dogs sometimes bred for specific looks, sometimes bred for both looks and ability, and bred for ability. And then you also have dogs bred just because they were "purebred" and intact.
Field bred dogs typically and across the board have always been bred and sold widely with full registration...
Show bred dogs as early as 2000-2005 (around that time) were being sold only with limited registration with sharp restrictions even beyond paperwork as to what puppy buyers could do with the dogs. You had many pups sold with puppy contracts requiring neuter/spaying.
Over the years, you have had strictly pet bred dogs who have primarily field dogs behind them, but also track back to commercial breeders (who might go back to show lines) who may sell full registration puppies. <= This means you have a variety of looks emerging from those types of pedigrees. This means dogs with a TON of hair. This also means dogs who are pretty darn close to having a very short and single coat.
It also means there's no real guarantees as far as how the pups will turn out. Best anyone can say is look at the parents. How much coat they have is a pretty good guide. But even there, it's hard to tell.
Last edited by Megora; 10-18-2018 at 11:36 PM.