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Thank you so much for your response, it's very encouraging at a difficult time. I do believe that getting tired (maybe very tired!) might just be a reasonable price to pay for what you get in return with a golden. And thanks for the tip about the winter, presumably a lot of exercise in the yard for River would have been less strenuous for you in the long run. Thanks again!First, so sorry to for your loss of your girl, 14 1/2 is an amazing outcome and it sounds like you gave her the very best of lives. Losing our first golden was one of the hardest things we have ever had to endure. It's a special kind of pain.
I am 65, my husband is 70 and we got our puppy right after Christmas 2021. We lost our first Golden Riley the summer of 2020 and we waited a while and then had to wait some more due to the 2020 puppy famine before we got River. We are both in decent shape physically but I wouldn't say anyone would mistake us for being in our early 50's (don't I wish). We do a fair amount of hiking so we are not in bad shape.
We are so glad to have River!! We have not had any trouble handling her in spite of the fact she is much, much more feisty than Riley ever was. She has opinions about many things. Our first priority was to get her in a puppy class and work really hard on impulse control and leash manners because we did not want to get jerked around or knocked over. My only regret is that we got her in the dead of winter and it was much more taxing getting her house trained and keeping her exercised. We had a particularly cold and windy winter and getting her outside to potty and to walk, not fun. At the end of the day we would get to about 8:00 and say, "Is it time for bed yet?" 🥴🥴. She has been perfect in the crate since day one which helped a lot but we were TIRED!!
We love having her, I can't imagine life without her. She keeps us entertained and training her has been a good hobby for me since I retired and have plenty of time to spend on her. If I was in your place I would find a breeder and get on a wait list ASAP, you can always decline but it took us well over a year to get our girl. We were more than ready and not getting any younger.