Retrievers have captured the hearts of many by being their lovable selves. For one thing, they have that natural willingness to help and eagerness to please their humans — and that they achieve so well. Not to mention, they’re intelligent, loyal, determined, agile, and strong, among other outstanding abilities.

Many of us are most familiar with the Golden Retriever, but there are six types of retriever dog breeds. Let us get to know more about retrievers, including the various types and qualities that they possess.

Stop Googling - Ask a Real Vet


  1. Types of Retriever Dogs
  2. Are Retrievers Smart
  3. How Active Are Retrievers
  4. Are Retrievers Good Family Dogs
  5. Do Retrievers Get Along with Other Pets
  6. FAQs
  7. Conclusion

Types of Retriever Dogs

Golden Retriever

Interesting facts about golden retrievers

Smart, active, and loving dogs, golden retrievers are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world. With Scottish Highlands roots, they were originally bred to help hunters gently carry prey in their mouths without damaging them. They do well with much stimulation (both physical and mental).

So you may be wondering — are there various kinds, body types, and color types of golden retrievers?

Fun fact about golden retrievers: Did you know that there are not just one, but three types of golden retrievers? The three types include:

American Golden Retriever

American golden retrievers are wonderful family dogs with features such as a sleek body and a golden, feathery coat.

English (or British) Golden Retriever

They have a broader build, are heavier in weight, and have a lighter coat compared to the two other golden retrievers.

Canadian Golden Retriever

Canadian golden retrievers are leaner and taller compared to the two other golden retriever types. Meanwhile, their coats are generally darker in color and thinner as well.

Labrador Retrievers

Interesting facts about labrador retrievers

Another very popular dog breed is the outgoing and active Labrador retriever. With roots in Northern Canada, they helped fishermen in the hauling of nets and catching of fish. They are water babies, eager to please, smart, and active dogs.

As for their color, the three main color types of Labrador retrievers are: yellow, chocolate, and black. Meanwhile, there are also variations in the color, resulting in Labrador retrievers with coats in the colors of white, fox red, and silver.

Chesapeake Bay Retriever

Interesting facts about chesapeake bay retrievers

Chesapeake Bay retrievers are very adaptable dog breeds. They love having their minds and bodies stimulated, so they’ll be happy to take on any tasks and activities.

They are the only type of retriever that is American-bred, and did we mention that they love swimming? The Chesapeake Bay retriever’s roots can be traced to ship-wrecked working dogs off the Maryland coast.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

“Small but incredible.” This is one good way to describe the Nova Scotia duck tolling retrievers, or "tollers." Even if they’re the smallest breed of retrievers, they are athletic. Their roots come from Nova Scotia (hence the name), where they were bred and trained by hunters to play by the water to invite curious prey.

Tollers love to use their brains and agility and love to be around others.

Curly-Coated Retriever

Another breed with a reputation for being willing to work is the curly-coated retriever. It is an understatement to say that they are athletic dogs.

They were originally bred for hunting waterfowl and upland birds in the 1800s and are said to probably be the first breed that was bred for intense retrieving work in England.

Having tightly curled coats that are resistant to water, these breeds can survive in extreme conditions. They are smart, full of youth, and love showing affection.

Flat-Coated Retriever

If you love playing with dogs, a flat-coated retriever may be the best match for you. Originally bred in the mid-1800s in England, the flat-coated retriever was given the title of “the gamekeeper’s dog," being a companion of English high society.

Intelligent and athletic, flat-coated retrievers are very willing to take on any activity, especially outdoors. They are loyal, outgoing, and sweet breeds that have a lifelong yearning for adventure and affection to boot.

Are Retrievers Smart

Retriever dog breeds are known to be very intelligent, tracing back to their rich histories as having been bred to accompany humans in various activities and tasks.

Golden retrievers, for instance, are ranked as the 4th smartest dog breed in intelligence and obedience, based on American Psychological Association research and intelligence trials by leading dog researcher Stanley Coren.

How smart are golden retrievers? In his canine research and intelligent trials, Coren (with the help of 200 North American obedience trial judges) measured “obedience and working intelligence” in dogs, measuring the time it takes for dogs to learn commands and how well they can retain their training. The results showed that Golden Retrievers have the capability of learning a new command with less than five repetitions. Moreover, they showed their willingness to obey commands in just the first attempt, with a success rate of 95% or more.

Apart from their high scores in obedience and working intelligence, Golden Retrievers have strong instincts when it comes to fetching and retrieving. In addition, they also exhibit noteworthy adaptive intelligence with the way they seem to read and understand human emotions.

How Active Are Retrievers

Because retrievers were originally bred for various working activities to help humans, they are generally very active dog breeds. With their intelligence, strength, and agility, they are generally happy to take on any task or activity.

Because they are active dog breeds, engaging them in play is a good way to bond. There are times, however, that you won’t be home to spend time with them. Petcube Play 2 not only helps you monitor your pet with its smart HD camera features and 110-degree camera view, but it also has an interactive laser toy feature and 2-way audio that allows you to play and interact with your dog even if you’re out of the house.

Are Retrievers Good Family Dogs

Retrievers can be good family dogs due to their smart and outgoing yet calm and gentle nature. They have a willingness to please and obey. They’re easily trainable too, making them good first-time pets for new dog owners, as long as they’re ready to take on large dog breeds.

While retrievers usually have good temperaments, supervising your dog with children is best to avoid any mishaps or accidents.

As much as possible, you want to avoid any mishaps and accidents, but you never know when your pet may get into an emergency. Petcube’s Pet Emergency Fund helps calm these worries with its pet- and pet-owner-friendly terms and services. A subscription provides up to $3000 for pet emergencies for up to six pets. Payments are also made directly to the vet clinic, so you won’t have to shell out cash. Moreover, they have a 24/7 online vet service to help with first aid and emergency triage needs.

If you’re ready to invest in your pet’s health and safety, we’re offering you an exclusive 27% off on Pet Emergency Fund subscriptions if you follow this link.

Do Retrievers Get Along with Other Pets

As long as they’re well-socialized, retrievers are generally friendly and easy-going, which helps them get along with other pets. Note, however, that pet introductions should always be done one step at a time to allow them to adjust to each other’s company. Nevertheless, supervision is essential (no matter how long you’ve had your pet) to make sure that they don’t get into a rumpus.

Monitoring your pets (especially when they’re new) is important to better understand their behavior and mannerisms. This is even more important when you have multiple pets around. The Petcube Cam 360, for example, is a great way to monitor your pet. Even in times when you’re away, the Petcube Cam 360 makes you feel like you’re physically there with your pet. With its 1080p HD camera, 360-degree pan-tilt rotation view, and 8x zoom feature, you’ll be able to watch over your pet as they move about. The camera also helps you detect any problems that your pets may get themselves into, so you can intervene.


Why are golden retrievers so popular?

Many qualities make golden retrievers so popular. Among these qualities are their playful, affectionate, loyal, intelligent, and gentle nature.

How heavy do golden retrievers get?

According to the American Kennel Club research, the ideal weight for Golden Retrievers is between 65 and 75 pounds for males and 55 and 65 pounds for females.

Note, however, that Golden Retrievers may tend to become overweight, stressing the importance of physical exercise and a proper diet.

Are golden retrievers herding dogs?

No, they are not. However, they were bred for a variety of activities, making them generally very active and agile dogs.


Upon getting to know interesting facts about retrievers, it’s no surprise how popular they are, isn’t it? Having a retriever as a pet can indeed be wonderful, with their loving, intelligent, active, and gentle qualities.

Was this article helpful?

Help us make our articles even better

Yes No

Thank you for your feedback