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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My husband and I have to pick a puppy today. Unfortunately we were not able to meet the dogs in person and must choose via photos and videos. Right now we are between Mr. Blue and Green.

From what we can tell, Mr. Blue is the leader of the group, seems to be the most outgoing and is the biggest in size, especially in the head.
Mr. Green seems to be more of a go with the flow guy, not showy but still very social.

Aside from temperament, we are looking for a dog with a more blocky head. We’re having a hard time picking between the two, as they are only 6.5 weeks old. Any help is much appreciated! This is our first golden.
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I prefer when a knowledgeable breeder does the picking. Can you tell the breeder what you are looking for and what things you want to do with the puppy and ask which one they think is better suited for you? Rukie's breeder asked questions about what we wanted and picked him for us. He is exactly what we hoped for.
 

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Blue appears to have more stop right now- but that will change lots before 8 weeks and even more by adulthood. You can't really choose a headpiece @ 6.5 wks. Green appears to have the shorter muzzle (again now- which isn't really relevant) and a better underjaw (but that may be the photos). I prefer the eye on Green way more than Blue. So many more things are more important than a headpiece and we can't see those things, like shoulder layback, in these photos. Whichever you choose, you will love.
 

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Kristy
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I am one of those people who prefers the breeder (who knows the puppies best) chooses based on temperament. If you have small children or grandchildren, I would ask for lower prey drive and laid back. Way more important for a pet to have a nice, middle of the road personality than anything.
 

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Choosing from pictures or even video is ??? Tell the breeder what you want, focusing on behavioral traits and the environment the puppy will be in...e.g. kids, no kids, apartment vs. home with backyard, fenced area to run or not, etc....from that the breeder has a better chance of picking a pup that best suits your needs....what the puppy looks like now, should be way down the 'want' list!
 

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6.5 weeks is not a great picking age. Personalities are still begining to develop and physically they are not really assessable yet.

I’d say flip a coin. What you see in an hour or two visit is not going to be useful or likely accurate. It would be so much better if the breeder waited to do some form of external temperament assessment like, Volhard, APET or similar which would grant at least some information to make sure homes and puppies are well suited to each other.
 

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Perhaps this is one of rare like 5% of breeders who happen to have pale puppies from parents with full and verifiable health certifications. 🤷🏼‍♀️


I do think it might be valuable to share this current poll/thread though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'd love to be wrong- but doubt full clearances are there based solely on coat color...

Both sire and dam have been checked and cleared for:
Degenerative Myelopathy (DM)-
Progressive Retinal Atrophy PRA 1
PRA 2
Progressive retinal Atrophy (PRA-prcd)
NCL

OFA hips, elbows, eyes and heart results all came back Good or Normal.

Also the pedigree for both parents of the Sire and Dam were provided and all were cleared.

I'd love to be wrong- but doubt full clearances are there based solely on coat color...
 

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Kristy
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Both sire and dam have been checked and cleared for:
Degenerative Myelopathy (DM)-
Progressive Retinal Atrophy PRA 1
PRA 2
Progressive retinal Atrophy (PRA-prcd)
NCL

OFA hips, elbows, eyes and heart results all came back Good or Normal.

Also the pedigree for both parents of the Sire and Dam were provided and all were cleared.
Wow, that is awesome! You have no idea how rare your breeder is. Most of us here can count on one hand in over ten years, the number of times we've had a thread like yours reveal a breeder who has all bases covered, inevitably at least one of the dogs is sourced from eastern europe (or the grandparents were) and they don't have them fully complete or they are relying on clearances from Europe. Few experienced, reputable breeders will allow novice owners to 'pick' a puppy out of a litter, especially at such an early age so you are part of .001 percent of puppy buyers if the clearances are what you have been told. Any chance one of the parents is also clear for Ichthyosis? I would love it if you'd PM the name of the breeder to me or someone else on this thread so that in the future we could refer people to the breeder. It is extremely unusual - it is highly unsuaul.
 

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My husband and I have to pick a puppy today. Unfortunately we were not able to meet the dogs in person and must choose via photos and videos. Right now we are between Mr. Blue and Green.

From what we can tell, Mr. Blue is the leader of the group, seems to be the most outgoing and is the biggest in size, especially in the head.
Mr. Green seems to be more of a go with the flow guy, not showy but still very social.

Aside from temperament, we are looking for a dog with a more blocky head. We’re having a hard time picking between the two, as they are only 6.5 weeks old. Any help is much appreciated! This is our first golden.
My suggestion would be to choose the personality that is best suited to your family's lifestyle and experience. As others have said, at this age it's impossible to tell what the dog will look like as an adult, and in any case, temperament, not appearance, is the thing that will determine how happy you're going to be with your dog.

So: if you are experienced dog owners, willing to commit to formal training classes, and if you have an active lifestyle, you might enjoy a more assertive dog. Assertive dogs are generally harder to live with as puppies: they tend to challenge human authority a bit more, and definitely need a lot of training and exercise to function well. You would choose a pup that is the "leader of the pack" if you want a competitive obedience or agility dog, for example. You would also expect to provide the dog with a couple of hours of good exercise per day - not walks on leash, but off-leash hikes or games of fetch or training sessions.

If, on the other hand, you're less active, less experienced or less willing to commit to training, a more laid-back personality will be a much better fit. Pups like this will be less challenging to live with in the early years, and will need less human input to function well.

There are a lot of posts on this forum from people who have problems with their pups because the pup's personality doesn't mesh with the human family's experience level and activity level. It's hugely important to get a pup who will be happy with the exercise level you can provide, and one that will function well with the amount of formal training you are willing to do.

Believe me, you will be a lot happier with a dog that fits well into your lifestyle and doesn't have a "blocky head" (whatever that is), than with a dog that has a "blocky head" and eats your furniture or knocks you down with his excesses of energy.

Since your breeder has given you an opinion about the two pups' personalities, in your shoes I would use that information to make the choice, and leave aside any considerations relating to the dog's future appearance.

Best of luck, let us know what you decide.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Wow, that is awesome! You have no idea how rare your breeder is. Most of us here can count on one hand in over ten years, the number of times we've had a thread like yours reveal a breeder who has all bases covered, inevitably at least one of the dogs is sourced from eastern europe (or the grandparents were) and they don't have them fully complete or they are relying on clearances from Europe. Few experienced, reputable breeders will allow novice owners to 'pick' a puppy out of a litter, especially at such an early age so you are part of .001 percent of puppy buyers if the clearances are what you have been told. Any chance one of the parents is also clear for Ichthyosis? I would love it if you'd PM the name of the breeder to me or someone else on this thread so that in the future we could refer people to the breeder. It is extremely unusual - it is highly unsuaul.
The mom is a carrier of Ichthyosis (Only bred to clear male never producing affected puppies)

The grandparents are imports from the Ukraine and Russia. Does Europe have different clearances? I’d be happy to send you the pedigrees if you could help me better understand them.
 

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The grandparents are imports from the Ukraine and Russia. Does Europe have different clearances?
Yes, in Europe they test for Hips and Elbows much younger than here. Also it is uncommon to see breeders overseas getting eye and heart certifications. The US standard for health certifications is more stringent as far as maturity, eyes and hearts. That is why when I imported from Italy, I not only got full health certifications but insisted on an Echocardiogram by a Cardiologist. It made me feel better about risk since the depth of heart testing (generational) is not the same as what you would expect to see in a US based pedigree.
 

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Both sire and dam have been checked and cleared for:
Degenerative Myelopathy (DM)-
Progressive Retinal Atrophy PRA 1
PRA 2
Progressive retinal Atrophy (PRA-prcd)
NCL

OFA hips, elbows, eyes and heart results all came back Good or Normal.

Also the pedigree for both parents of the Sire and Dam were provided and all were cleared.
I too would love to know who it is- because I can count on one hand this sort of eastern Euro pedigree where both breeding animals are fully clearanced. It's quite rare.
 

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Kate
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OFA hips, elbows, eyes and heart results all came back Good or Normal.

Also the pedigree for both parents of the Sire and Dam were provided and all were cleared.
Were you able to take the registration names or numbers for both parents and confirm the clearances (hips, elbows, eyes, heart) on OFA?

If so - imagine all of us here falling out of our chairs. Because that's typically not the case - especially with a breeder who is sending pictures of pups to buyers for them to pick out a pup from. :)

Based on pictures provided - I prefer Mr. Green. But truly, what I like about him might just be the angle of the picture of that baby vs the other.

If you get either pup - please come back in a year (or stick around for a year or two) and repost pics. Would be fun to see which you pick and how he turns out.

Otherwise - suggest keeping the baby boy intact until age 3 - would help if you want a boy with a nice head that matches the rest of his body. :)
 

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Kristy
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The mom is a carrier of Ichthyosis (Only bred to clear male never producing affected puppies)

The grandparents are imports from the Ukraine and Russia. Does Europe have different clearances? I’d be happy to send you the pedigrees if you could help me better understand them.
Feel free to message the registered names of the parents of the litter to LJack, Prism, Halia or me etc. - these are all people I'd personally feel comfortable asking for help with if I were looking at a litter like this. The responders here have been on this forum for many years, I promise not one here as an agenda other than to help you understand what you're getting for your money and to know if we could add this breeder to a very short list of reputable folks with very light Goldens.
 

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... if we could add this breeder to a very short list of reputable folks with very light Goldens.
^^^ This!

I would love to have something to share other than like 5 name in the US or look in Canada when people are looking for European style dogs.

I‘d personally be very interested in the stud. Having an Ichthyosis affected girl from Italy and her carrier daughter, I am always looking for nice boys from European lines who have full health certifications AND are Ichthyosis clear.
 
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