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Discussion Starter #1
Hello! I'm looking for a family companion only; we're not interested in showing, breeding or hunting the dog. We basically want a "couch potato" dog. :) I am thinking I need to look for a breeder concerned primarily with conformation. Am I right? Does anyone have a good recommendation for a breeder like this?
 

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and now Mollie's mom too
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Jennifer Craig of Harborview Goldens, in Northeastern PA. Several GRF members own dogs from her litters and she is a member here as well.
ljilly28 on GRF owns a puppy named Lush, maybe she will see this and post a picture for you, she is adorable.
 

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Honestly, if you want a "couch potato" dog, a golden retriever puppy is not the right choice for you. Yes, a golden can grow into a dog that is content to sit with the family during low key TV time.... but only if he or she is given an appropriate amount of exercise and mental stimulation (i.e. training) during the other parts of the day. Conformation breeders, field breeders, back yard breeders, puppy millers.... in this case, the answer is the same. Goldens need exercise. For that matter all dogs need exercise.

If you just meant that you didn't intend to compete and I took the "couch potato" reference the wrong way, I am sorry for that. I just think it's a shame when someone turns up after owning a puppy (of any breed) for a few weeks or months and is dismayed that the dog is so "hyper" and laments they do not have the "mellow, couch potato" dog of their fantasty. That kind of dog takes work... daily... for the entire life of the dog.

All that said, I do hope you'll follow the recommendations given above for reputable breeders and that you are successful in finding yourself a happy, healthy and sound companion for your family. I just hope that your expectations for the dog are realistic. Good luck in your search!

Julie, Jersey and Oz
 

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Kate
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The only thing I would add to Julie's comment above is that you need to discuss your lifestyle and committment to daily exercise (1/2 hour daily walk at LEAST) with breeders.

The other thing is that I would not assume that conformation goldens are going to be calm and easy to train. Our conformation guy (Danny) did not settle until he was 5. If he didn't get taken for his daily walk (he had to be walked for an hour every day), in addition to many play outings in our yard with our other dog, in addition to playing with our other dog in our living room... and keep in mind he was a crippled guy with bad elbows.

If he got loose, he would run like the wind. You could NOT catch him unless he was ready to be caught.

And it took him a long time to understand the whole "loose lead" thing. Bad elbows and all. He was a tugboat.

And the barking... if he didn't get enough attention and exercise in a day he would sit between us and the TV and bark nonstop. >.<

Goldens are awesome dogs, but I would not call them couch potatoes. Not if they are in good shape and healthy.
 

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Be sure to work with a breeder in terms of what your expectations are. Some goldens are just more mellow than others, and a good breeder will match the puppy's temperament to your lifestyle and expectations.
My Tito Monster is as lazy as can be. Mellow, calm, laid back, a real "golden rug". He has a fantastic "on/off" switch, when he's on, he's a ball of fire, but when it's time to turn it off, he shuts down, lies down, and doesn't bother anyone. A real, real easy keeper.
They are out there. Work with a good breeder, and you will find the right dog for you and your family.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all the useful comments! :)
What I meant by a couch potato dog is that we are not interested in showing or hunting the dog competitively. We of course will exercise our new dog as we did our 1st Golden. And we have a little boy who I'm sure will keep the dog hoppin'!
 

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I have a laid back Golden who by appearance is more of the conformation type Golden.
He has never been high energy, was very easy to train, never destroyed anything inside the house even when a puppy (though outdoors as a puppy he used to break off branches and would pull up things I planted). He has always been content with 2 (20-30) min walks a day but loves to run when we take him where he can run offlead a few times a week. He enjoys some daily indoor play-finding things I hide, and has no phobias or fears. He is a gentleman and doesn't run in the house and only knocks things over when his tail is wagging!
He doesn't bark mindlessly; if he is wanting a door to be opened, he gives one civilized quiet bark and then waits patiently til we come to open it.
Other than thyroid trouble which developed at age 5, he has enjoyed perfect health.
I wish I could recommend his breeder but unfortunately, he is the result of a BYB.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I have a laid back Golden who by appearance is more of the conformation type Golden.
He has never been high energy, was very easy to train, never destroyed anything inside the house even when a puppy (though outdoors as a puppy he used to break off branches and would pull up things I planted). He has always been content with 2 (20-30) min walks a day but loves to run when we take him where he can run offlead a few times a week. He enjoys some daily indoor play-finding things I hide, and has no phobias or fears. He is a gentleman and doesn't run in the house and only knocks things over when his tail is wagging!
He doesn't bark mindlessly; if he is wanting a door to be opened, he gives one civilized quiet bark and then waits patiently til we come to open it.
Other than thyroid trouble which developed at age 5, he has enjoyed perfect health.
I wish I could recommend his breeder but unfortunately, he is the result of a BYB.
You know what? You actually just described our last Golden, (who we lost to cancer earlier this summer), to a tee. He was also the result of a BYB (we didn't know any better at the time) but he was the perfect companion and was very stunning with a beautiful dark red coat. Unfortunately, he wasn't as lucky as your dog in the health department. We battled allergies and skin problems for most of life before he was diagnosed with lymphoma. It's going to be hard to find a dog to fill his shoes.
 

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When I first got my boy Sam, (which he came from across the continent). I had something in mind for temperament, but was really looking for a great show prospect (so sometimes high energy can be good as long as its under control). Anyways, for the first year, we limited his exercise for good joint development, and he always seemed pretty high energy, although extremely intelligent (but lacked patience, which was obvious trying to teach him "wait" or "stay"). But it was such an amazing transformation once we started increasing his exercise...Right about 2 years old, people would start commenting on how Calm he was. But he also has an amazing switch, when he knows its time to play ball or something, the inner puppy just comes out in full force, but when he knows its time to train or be serious he is just the most patient obedient dog I have ever owned. (but again I think its due to him never having pent up energy (frustration), because we exercise him quite a lot about, an hour plus a day).
 

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My six are all couch potatoes... they require very little exercise. However, if you want to exercise them, they will. They are lines are combination working and conformation lines.
 

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Kate
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Be sure to work with a breeder in terms of what your expectations are. Some goldens are just more mellow than others, and a good breeder will match the puppy's temperament to your lifestyle and expectations.
My Tito Monster is as lazy as can be. Mellow, calm, laid back, a real "golden rug". He has a fantastic "on/off" switch, when he's on, he's a ball of fire, but when it's time to turn it off, he shuts down, lies down, and doesn't bother anyone. A real, real easy keeper.
They are out there. Work with a good breeder, and you will find the right dog for you and your family.
I want to say that my guy is Tito's temperament clone (albeit missing some of Tito's gray matter), but while he is the "perfect" dog and my couch buddy, I have to be absolutely honest....

There are some evenings (ok, every evening) where I put him in sit and down stays just so I can enjoy something I'm watching on TV. Because when he wants attention and training time... he demands it. :uhoh:
 
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