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My wife and I are looking for a puppy for our family. We have just begun the process of finding the "perfect" pup.
After many discussions about what we would like, we have decided that a Golden would be the best for a family with two little boys.
The only sticking point we have is that my wife believes that it is going to be hit or miss as to what the dog's temperament will be like. (we would love a very calm dog.) We have gone back and forth over female versus male and also whether breeding for temperament is even possible.
I believe it is , of course, but she is stuck on the theory that how you raise the pup decides it's demeanor. While there is truth to that, I was hoping some here could add to what I am trying to convince her of, that temperament is not hit or miss, and that we should look for a breeder who has bred this trait into their lines.
She is convinced that even if we pick a pup from a breeder's sport bred lines, we could raise a calm pet.
We are not looking to show, nor hunt. We want a family member who will be loved and cherished and will be part of the families memories as we grow.
We are very excited to begin this chapter in our lives and look forward to any thoughts and advice you wish to share.

Just a bit of background:
We live in Ct and have two little boys, a 3 year old and 10 month old.
My wife is a stay at home mom who has been chewing my ear off for a pup for our boys!
Any references to breeders in our area (preferably with litters ready or soon to be) would be appreciated.

Thanks!
 

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Tess and Liza
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I'm not an expert like most other members, as I do not yet own a puppy (will hopefully be born today...or tomorrow), so I won't touch the breeding questions you raise, but reading your post does raise a few questions with me. Having a three year old and a 10 month old and a puppy seems a lot to me, especially as you are looking for a puppy that already has been born or will soon be. Meaning: a puppy you need to potty train in the winter, that can't go outside every moment you or the puppy would like, because of the weather, that needs to be taught a lot of things, etc. Why are you so set upon acquiring a puppy now? Why not wait until spring, when the weather is a lot nicer (mind you: going outside with small children in our CT weather is an accomplishment in itself, let alone having a puppy accompanying you.) I have a 14 year old, so I can focus completely on the puppy (poor thing!), that's why I'm happy to get it in December, but if I were in your shoes...
 

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Temperament is not so hit or miss. It is very important that a breeder consider temperament before any breeding is made. Having an opportunity to meet at least the dam, and preferably the sire as well, is important. Meeting offspring from prior litters can be helpful, too. I'd be looking at a breeder who also does temperament/apptitude testing on the litter before placing puppies.
 

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Tess and Liza
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Oh, I'm sorry, Of course you're very welcome to the forum....I started typing straight away, didn't mean to be rude...this forum has already been a lifesaver for me, with all the knowledge people pour into it!
 

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I'm not an expert like most other members, as I do not yet own a puppy (will hopefully be born today...or tomorrow), so I won't touch the breeding questions you raise, but reading your post does raise a few questions with me. Having a three year old and a 10 month old and a puppy seems a lot to me, especially as you are looking for a puppy that already has been born or will soon be. Meaning: a puppy you need to potty train in the winter, that can't go outside every moment you or the puppy would like, because of the weather, that needs to be taught a lot of things, etc. Why are you so set upon acquiring a puppy now? Why not wait until spring, when the weather is a lot nicer (mind you: going outside with small children in our CT weather is an accomplishment in itself, let alone having a puppy accompanying you.) I have a 14 year old, so I can focus completely on the puppy (poor thing!), that's why I'm happy to get it in December, but if I were in your shoes...
waiting till at least the spring isn't a bad idea.

my wife already gave up on the morning walks, leaving them to me, and it's only in the upper 30's lower 40's in the farmington valley!
 

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Boudiga
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Just an idea - there are many wonderful Goldens waiting for homes that are currently in the care of rescue groups. If you go that route, you'll be able to meet the dog, assess their temperament and see exactly what size/color they are. Not all dogs in rescue have major (or any) issues.
 

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One of the advantages of working with a "master breeder," which, to my definition, is one that is active in dog sports and knows a lot about their lines several generations back, is that they have a vast body of knowledge about the temperament of their dogs. Our first golden was very high energy, and when we were ready to add a second golden, we were happy with the breeder, but felt that a golden that had more of a low key temperament would be a better fit, to offset our crazy Jake.

We were able to select from 5 girls--the breeder allowed us to meet each one, with the stipulation that she was going to make the final choice for us. Each of the pups we met (we focused only on the females, since that is what we wanted) were all very mellow--all allowed us to handle them to our hearts content, didn't struggle, snuggled in our arms--we were happy with any choice. Turns out the mother was a mellow golden, and the father was a happy-go-lucky dog too.

Our current golden (now 18 months) also fits the bill in terms of temperament. I wanted a golden that demonstrated an eagerness for fun and games--I felt this would bode well regarding working ability should I try my hand at working towards advanced titles in obedience, agility, etc. My husband wanted a dog that had a certain "focus" (he enjoys photography and likes to be able to take photos of the dogs and doesn't like a wiggle worm). Mac keyed into us from the start, and was the first pup to grab a rope toy as big as she was and carry it around. She did wiggle around in my arms after a while, but learned to settle down--she exhibited early on that she can have a mind of her own, but can be reasoned with.

If you find you can't work with a breeder regarding your concerns/questions regarding temperament, then you are not dealing with a truly knowledgeable breeder--you're dealing with someone who is approaching it a bit too casually for your requirements (IMHO). Good luck, and although I'm in South Florida and don't have to worry about the weather, I would consider waiting unless you want to potty train during winter storms.
 

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Even though my puppy should be coming home mid December and my child is grown and not living at home I am dreading the winter potty training. I personally hate the cold (still trying to figure out how the good lord landed me here all my life). So it really might be hard for your wife to go out side every 20 minutes durring the day with a small child, so that sweet puppy can potty train.
 

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Welcome to the forum.

My Brady will be three in November and is now a pretty calm golden, although I was told he was calm as a puppy, he still had a lot of uncalm moments! He comes from show / conformation lines.

Unfortunately, his breeder and many breeders out there will not sell a puppy to a family with children under 4. I did not understand the reasoning, until we got Brady. My youngest had just turned 4 and the older two were 8 and 9. Well, when you bring a puppy into the house, your children replace their littermates. The puppy WILL bite and chew on your kids, your kids will scream and it will just encourage the puppy more. You will need 100 percent supervision!

Other than that, Brady is the perfect dog for us. He is a cuddlier. I also believe that they are one of the best breeds for a family.

You might want to consider adopting an adult dog from a breeder or rescue.

Good luck, I did not want to scare you, but I just wanted to warn you. We just rescued another golden who is about 4 months old. She probably comes from a puppy mill, and looks more like the sporting lines. She is calmer with the children than what Brady was, but Brady and her wrestle all day long, so that wears her out.
 

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I've raised puppies in the dead of Northern Michigan winters - both litters and individuals. It certainly isn't "convenient", but neither is having a puppy, period. It can be done. Mine love the snow, and I honestly haven't felt that housebreaking has been any more difficult from one season to another. It comes down to what you feel that you want to do, but I wouldn't pass on a puppy from a wonderful breeding with the qualities that you are looking for simply because of the weather.
 

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I've raised puppies in the dead of Northern Michigan winters - both litters and individuals. It certainly isn't "convenient", but neither is having a puppy, period. It can be done. Mine love the snow, and I honestly haven't felt that housebreaking has been any more difficult from one season to another. It comes down to what you feel that you want to do, but I wouldn't pass on a puppy from a wonderful breeding with the qualities that you are looking for simply because of the weather.
Did you find it difficult to bundle up your three month old and three year old every time you had to take our your new puppy? I would think that the puppy would never make it outside in time if I had to go through all of that, making it that much more difficult to potty train. My daughter is 20 years old and I am so far removed from having a young child, my Mitchell GR just passed at the old age of 13 and 3/4's so I am also far removed from having a puppy. When I put those two things together my mind goes numb! LOL
 

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My puppy is from CT (Sunfire). I flew from Louisiana to pick him up. However, I would never recommend my puppy to anyone that isn't looking for a very active puppy! Yes, my dog is probably even more energetic than he might normally be because I nurture that energy (I want a high energy working dog), but I can't imagine that he would ever completely turn that off.But I was there for the puppy testing, and there did seem to be big differences in the energy levels of different pups from within that litter. So it is very important to go to a breeder that has experience evaluating young puppies and matching them with homes.
 

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Murphy's mom
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Did you find it difficult to bundle up your three month old and three year old every time you had to take our your new puppy? I would think that the puppy would never make it outside in time if I had to go through all of that, making it that much more difficult to potty train. My daughter is 20 years old and I am so far removed from having a young child, my Mitchell GR just passed at the old age of 13 and 3/4's so I am also far removed from having a puppy. When I put those two things together my mind goes numb! LOL
Not easy but still doable. Puppy in a crate....3 month old in the crib or playpen etc....3 year old looking out the door or window as mommy freezes her butt off taking puppy out for his potty runs! Usually in January in Ohio they are quick ones! Each family decides what they can and can't do. And yes they need to think hard about that before making a commitment to bring home a puppy.

As my mother used to say that is why God designed pregnancy for the young and not the old. (But then again, science is challenging that as well!)
 
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Take your time. Do your research. Tell breeders what you want in your potential puppy. Many (most EXCELLENT)breeders do temperment testing on their puppies and try to match puppies to potential parents. Many lines, such as field goldens, would be most happy with families willing and ready to spend time training them for a JOB. Without a JOB some dogs become real problems living in real families, especially those with young children. Many, many goldens can become very nice family members when you have young children...but be prepared for another child for a while!! Some goldens are bred to be real working dogs and would be happiest with a family/owner commited to providing that kind of environment for them.
 

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Did you find it difficult to bundle up your three month old and three year old every time you had to take our your new puppy? I would think that the puppy would never make it outside in time if I had to go through all of that, making it that much more difficult to potty train. My daughter is 20 years old and I am so far removed from having a young child, my Mitchell GR just passed at the old age of 13 and 3/4's so I am also far removed from having a puppy. When I put those two things together my mind goes numb! LOL
I didn't have to bundle up a three month old and a three year old every time I took out the puppy. I was able to open the door and the puppy would go into an ex-pen just outside, if my children were awake and I was the only adult there. When they were either asleep, or my husband or another adult was home as well, I could spend more time outside playing with the puppy.
I've just never found it to be all that complicated.
 

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est.1989
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I also raised many puppies & my kids together, my youngest ( now 18.5 ) could be found more often than not inside the dog crate with the puppy :p: it made for interesting conversation! I always preferred potty training in the winter months, although it was a hassle with boots/ coats etc, I found puppy much more focused on getting the task at hand done and getting back into a warm house... Good luck!
 
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