Golden Ret Enthusiast
Join Date: Apr 2018
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There are ways to help stack the odds in your favor with regards to cancer. The big one is not to spay or neuter early (before 12 months) and keeping them intact permanently reduces the risk of cancer to almost none for the main ones that Golden's get (mass cell, lymphoma and hemangiosarcoma).
But like everyone has said, there is no full proof way to keep a dog from getting cancer and there are no cancer free lines. Now, the better the quality of the lines and breeders I'd say that will help as well. Again all you can do is help stack the odds in your (or the dogs) favor.
The notion about how Golden's in Europe don't get cancer like the ones in the US, that may be true to a degree. In the US, all the rescues and vets since the 80's have been hell bent on population control and spay/neuter at 6, 5 3 even 2 months of age. This leads to significant increases in cancer rates since they stop all the hormones the reproductive organs produce. These are believed to help keep the dogs stay healthy. In Europe, they don't really believe in spay or neuter much and the vast majority of dogs stay intact. They usually only spay/neuter for health reasons like if an intact female develops pyometra infection. To save the dog the treatment is usually emergency spay.
So I'm not sure I totally buy the notion that the European lines are any healthier then the ones here in the US, but that we may be causing it from so much spaying and neutering, not that they are really any healthier.