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Are Golden Retrievers good with kids? This question might have rung in your mind before adopting a Golden or when welcoming a newborn into the family.
Fortunately, Goldens Retrievers are gentle and friendly with kids. They are known for their jovial and calm demeanor which makes them very popular family dogs across the world.
Keep reading this post to discover the relationship between Golden Retrievers and kids and find out helpful tips on how to make them live in harmony.
Are Golden Retrievers Good Family Dogs?
Golden Retrievers have a friendly, gentle, and affectionate character which makes them great family dogs.
These double-coated dogs can live in a variety of spaces including apartments, bungalows, and in the countryside.
Golden Retrievers have long been tagged as natural people-pleasers because they find much pleasure in making their human companions happy.
They are also intelligent, which makes it easy for you to train them. A well-trained Goldie will definitely be loyal to their owner and devoted to following what they say.
This makes them a good dog breed to choose if you have a full family set up with kids and other pets as well.
However, you should remember that even though Golden Retrievers are inherently predisposed to love their caregivers, each dog is an individual.
You should therefore train your furry friend to be well-behaved in the house to make the relationship better from an early age.
Do Golden Retrievers Have a Temper?
Golden Retrievers are even-tempered. They are not easily drawn to anger unless when they feel threatened and need to defend themselves.
In such cases, an annoyed Goldie might show some signs of aggression such as growling to turn the agitator away and to protect themselves.
These double-coated dogs are not inherently prone to show sudden outbursts and unpredictable behavior. They are typically patient and eager to please their human companions.
Are Golden Retrievers Safe with Kids?
You’re probably wondering whether your child will be safe around a Golden Retriever. Worry not because these dogs are gentle and safe with kids.
Golden Retrievers have a natural predisposition to make friends with humans and they will definitely enjoy being around kids.
In fact, Golden Retrievers are used as therapy dogs to provide comfort for children in hospitals because of their calming presence.
However, it’s important that you know even the calmest dog with humans can sometimes get anxious or agitated.
This is more rampant when the dog is not well-trained or poorly socialized with people and other animals.
You, therefore, need to teach your kids how to interact with dogs to ensure they don’t stir up the canines to become defensive.
Tell your children that the dog can also feel pain when touched in the wrong way. They should never pull the fur, squeeze the tail, or ears, and never climb on the dog’s back.
Make them understand that the dog can be fun-loving but they will be aggressive when they are in pain or threatened.
Why Are the Golden Retriever Good Breed for Kids?
The inherent personalities of Golden Retrievers are what makes them a good breed for families including kids. These favorable traits can be found both in Golden puppies and adults.
1. They are Friendly
Golden Retrievers are highly social pets who love to be around their human companions. They take pride in staying closer to their caregivers which makes them a good choice for families with kids.
The friendly nature of Golden Retrievers can also help your child to develop their social skills faster.
2. They are Playful
Golden Retrievers are always ready for a quick dash around the yard and a game of fetch. This is due to their high energy levels which gives them a preference to play.
Their bouncy nature blends well with that of the kids who also love to play and explore their new world. These two may easily become best friends within a short time.
3. They are active
Golden Retrievers are active dogs who love to spend time on walks, hikes, and other outdoor adventures. This active lifestyle is crucial in keeping the dog healthy and fit.
They can easily blend into a household with an active lifestyle. Their high energy level can match that of kids who can make very good exercising partners.
4. Well-known family dogs
Golden Retrievers are one of the most popular family dogs in America, closing up the top 3 spots for many years in a row. Their gentle nature and cool temperament make them a good family pet for those with toddlers too.
These charming dogs have a long history of staying peaceful around kids and keeping up with their endless games.
5. They are smart
Golden Retrievers have good intelligence which makes them very smart dogs to be around. This makes it very easy for you to train them on obedience and command.
They typically get a quick sense to be good with kids because of their willingness to support the toddlers as they grow.
6. They’re affectionate
Young children are very easy to love, and Golden Retrievers have the affection to pass it to them. They will love to snuggle around the little children in their beds to share warmth and comfort.
This companion helps in building the bond between the kids and the lovely dog at home.
7. They’re easy to train
Due to their intellectual knack and eager-to-please personality, Golden retrievers have a high willingness to learn new things.
You can easily train your Goldie to embrace your Newborn as a part of the family and they will be eager to please you.
Be patient in the training and allow your dog to develop the bond at their own pace.
Are Male or Female Golden Retrievers Better for Kids?
Both female and male Golden Retrievers are fantastic with kids. They may however have a few differences which might make either of them to be more inclined to children.
Most people have the opinion that female Goldens Retrievers may approach kids with a more naturing and motherly nature than the males.
Male Goldens on the other hand might be more protective of the kids, making them good guard dogs to keep in your home.
But in general, there shouldn’t be a big difference between male and female Goldies in how they interact with children.
Kids and Golden Retrievers Tips
How To Introduce Golden Retrievers to Kids
Despite their fun-loving demeanor and calm nature towards children, you need to introduce your Golden Retriever to your kids in bits.
If you are bringing a new Goldie to your home with kids, you need to make sure they meet as early as possible.
If the dog had previously interacted with children during puppyhood, then you may not have problems introducing them to your kids.
But if they’re seeing the toddler for the first time, you need to take it much slower and be gentle in the process.
Start the introduction process in an open room such as the living room and make sure the baby is in the right mood to interact with everyone.
You can hold the baby as you have another member of the family sitting around with the pet. Being comfortable in this situation will show your kid that the dog is part of the family and they will be ready to accept them.
You should make the first visits short and watch out for any signs of nervousness from the baby or the dog.
Make the subsequent visits longer only when the dog and baby feel comfortable being around each other. Try to bring them closer together while carefully supervising the situation.
You should not restrain your furry friend. Give them humble space to retreat when they feel threatened or overwhelmed during the process.
Reward and praise your Golden Retriever every time they become gentle towards your kids. You can invite your child to give the dog a treat since this will make their bond stronger.
How Should Kids Interact with Golden Retrievers?
You should teach your children how to interact with your dogs and tell them never to touch a neighbor’s dog without express permission from the owner.
There are plenty of games that kids can engage in with dogs to improve their bonding and in embracing fun moments together.
These interactive games are beneficial in developing the mental powers and judgment capabilities of both your kid and the dog.
Things To Consider
You should teach your young ones to respect the dog’s personal space. They should not interrupt them in their sleep since this could provoke the Goldie into aggression.
The children should also avoid playing roughly with the dogs. Teach them that the dog is an emotional being and not a toy. They should not pull the tail, climb on the back, or hit the dog.
How To Train a Golden Retriever to Be Kid-Friendly
Goldens have a natural inclination to make friends with humans. But like all other dogs, you need to train them to befriend the kids at home.
You should expose your Golden Retriever to different social environments from an early age. The period between 6 weeks to 18 weeks is the best to kickstart their social lives. But it is never too late to start at any moment.
Let them interact with all the family members including the children from the time they get weaned from their mothers.
This habit will instill the social skills of your furry friend and make them ready to accept the new-coming child(ren) in the home.
2. Basic obedience training
Teach your Golden Retriever basic obedience traits such as ‘sit and stay‘. This will enable you to guide the dog when introducing them to the kids and to calm them in potentially threatening situations.
Your child will also find it amusing when they instruct the dog to do something and they actually do it.
3. Babysit with your dog
Invite your Golden Retriever to join you in babysitting the kid. Let them hang around the area and observe how you take care of the young one.
This will also allow the dog to get familiarized with the baby’s sounds and baby products such as blankets, bottles, prams, etc.
How To Stop a Golden Retriever’s Aggression Towards Children
On a few unlikely occasions, your Golden Retriever might be provoked and show aggression towards the children.
1. Understand the reasons
The first thing you need to do is to find out why your pup is showing aggression towards the child. You can ask the child what they did to the dog and they may be gracious enough to reveal it to you.
If the kid has climbed on the dog’s back and pulled their ear, then the dog will certainly be in pain and might try to defend themselves.
However, sometimes the child may not remember the action that might have inadvertently hurt the dog. In such cases, you need to observe the dog’s body language to determine what’s making them mad.
2. Allow the dog to calm down
The second thing is to create a safe space for your dog to vent their frustration. Allow the agitated Goldie to stay in their room for some time to cool down before proceeding to make amends.
Once the dog has visibly relaxed and appears to be calm, you can slowly approach them with a gentle pose.
As you approach, speak to them in a soothing and comforting tone to convey your apologies. Offer a gentle pet on their back when you’re close enough while continuing to speak in a calm and loving tone.
3. Train the dog
After the first scuffle, you need to train or retrain your Golden Retriever on how to be calm around kids. Make the pup get accustomed to the child’s style of play which sometimes can get rough.
4. Educate the kids
Follow your kid afterward and discourage them from provoking the dog in the future. Educate them to play with the Goldie in a calm manner and never to subject them to pain.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Are Golden Retrievers Protective?
Golden Retrievers can be protective due to their unwavering loyalty to their owners. They can build up a dedication to protecting the family.
They also have a loud bark and an instinctive high prey drive which may threaten an intruder.
2. Are Golden Retrievers aggressive?
Golden Retrievers are not inherently aggressive dogs. However, they can display aggressive behavior when they feel threatened or provoked into danger.
Aside from mistreatment, aggression in Goldens is also typically a result of inadequate training, lack of socialization, and territoriality.
3. Are Golden Retrievers good with babies?
Yes. Golden Retrievers can be good with babies due to their gentle nature and fun-loving character.
Despite this friendly character, you need to properly train the dog and introduce them to the child in a gradual manner.
Are Golden Retrievers good with kids? Yes, these gorgeous dogs can make good friends with children. They have a fun-loving charisma which is appeased by their interaction with children.
If you are looking for a family dog that will blend in your home with a child, then you can never go wrong with a Golden Retriever.
But you should introduce the dog to your kid in a supervised environment and in a gradual manner to kickstart their journey to a happy life.
Laura is the founder of Furs'n'Paws. She is a also a pet writer and expert with more than 20 years of experience of working with dogs and cats. She developed a very strong love for animals at a young age. Her passion led her to establish a thriving pet sitting and dog walking business in Dubai. As an expert in pet training, behavior, and nutrition, Laura is committed to helping pet owners and pet lovers by offering high-quality information on a wide range of topics.