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Agreed - the behavior shown in the pictures is a learned behavior (a "trick" of sorts). That said, I've found that whether or not a dog wants to "cuddle" is somewhat based on the individual dog. Of the 6 Goldens I've had, only three of them liked to cuddle... And they were all boys. My girls were very much "on my terms" and didn't usually enjoy my getting into their space (they enjoyed being close to me and being petted - when they were in the mood - but didn't really enjoy being hugged or having me in their face). Although in my experience the boys (all boys) are more into physical affection, I know others who have had girls who were super affectionate.

Your best bet is to first find a breeder or breeders you are happy with (reputable breeder who follows the GRCA Code of Ethics). From there, let the breeder know you consider a dog who enjoys physical affection to be a priority. Most Goldens do like affection, but if the breeder knows her lines tend to be a bit more aloof, hopefully they'll let you know before you commit. After that, a breeder should take your desire for a "cuddly" dog into account when deciding which puppy from a litter is most likely to have the temperament you are looking for. But be aware there are no guarantees... a cuddly puppy could still grow up to be a somewhat aloof adult. If that cuddly personality is essential to you, you may want to consider buying/adopting an adult dog with an already established temperament.
 
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