Golden Retriever Life Expectancy? How To Keep Your
Golden Retriever Healthy And Happy
The Golden Retriever life expectancy is 10 to 12 years, with 11.5 years being normal for most dogs. Cancer is
the biggest killer in the breed. You may or may not be able to prevent cancer, but there are some things you can do
to maximize the Golden Retriever life span. Keeping your Golden Retriever healthy and happy for all his years
should be a top priority for any owner.
1. What is the best dog food for a Golden Retriever?
Considering the breed’s tendency toward cancer, many Golden Retriever owners like to feed their dogs a dog food
that is as healthy as possible. You may want to consider a premium food with more natural ingredients. There is a
belief that foods that are more processed and which have more chemicals in them may contribute to cancer. Organic
foods are very expensive, but there are many good premium dog foods that have meats that are antibiotic free and
Some claim to offer human grade meat protein. Look for dog foods that have two or three named meat proteins in
the first five ingredients. Look for dog foods that have fewer grains, especially corn. Corn is often used as a
source of protein in dog foods because it is cheaper than meat protein but many dog foods stuff their foods with
corn in various forms such as corn gluten, ground yellow corn, whole corn, and so on. When you add up all the
different kinds of corn in a food, the corn may be the biggest ingredient. Unfortunately, dogs only process about
50 percent of the corn they eat.
The rest is passed as waste material. Dogs can process meat protein much more efficiently. Look for foods that
do not use artificial preservatives such as BHA and ethoxyquin. Instead, they should use vitamin C and E as
preservatives. By choosing a healthy food for your Golden Retriever you can make sure the Golden Retriever life
expectancy of your dog is improved.
2. What kind of vet care does a Golden Retriever need?
You can improve Golden Retriever life expectancy by providing your dog with good vet care. As a puppy your
Golden should receive all of his puppy vaccinations. Puppies are particularly susceptible to disease and they don’t
have any immunity once their immunity from their mother wears off, usually around 6 weeks of age. Follow your vet
or your breeder’s advice about puppy vaccinations to protect your puppy. Make sure your puppy is also vaccinated
against rabies. Then, a year later, follow up with the necessary booster shots. After these booster shots,
vaccinations need to be given at different times. Some need to be repeated every three years, some every two years,
and so on. You should not have to give your dog all of his shots again in the same year.
This is particularly important with Golden Retrievers as there is some suggestion that over-vaccination can be
harmful to the dog’s immune system. Do vaccinate and give your dog the vaccinations he needs to protect him, but
stagger the shots and give them in different years so they don’t over-tax your Golden’s immune system all at one
time. Becoming informed about your Golden’s vaccinations can improve the Golden Retriever life span. When your
Golden Retriever is about six years old you should have your vet start performing an annual senior wellness check
This check up will examine your Golden’s blood, urine and other organ functions to make sure everything is
working properly. At some point your Golden may need to have his teeth cleaned by your vet under anesthesia.
However, this should not be done on an annual basis. This is a procedure done under anesthesia and there is some
risk involved. It is usually only needed as your dog gets older and may have some tooth decay.
3. What else can I do to improve Golden Retriever life expectancy?
Keep your Golden Retriever in good condition. As with many dogs, as your Golden gets older he may be less
energetic, and he may put on weight. Monitor how much food your dog eats. Control his portions. If you have other
dogs, don’t let your Golden eat their food. Watch the snacks. You should also make sure that your Golden Retriever
continues to get plenty of daily exercise. He may not be as active as he was as a young dog, but you can start
taking him for long daily walks. Go hiking with him. Take him for a swim. Your Golden Retriever should go on being
an active dog throughout his life. Keep your Golden active and in good shape and don’t let him become overweight or
obese. It’s estimated that 25 to 40 percent of the dogs in the U.S. are overweight or obese and this can shorten a
dog’s life. Obesity leads to diabetes, heart problems, arthritis, respiratory problems, difficulties during
surgery, and many other dog health problems.
If you keep these suggestions in mind then you should be able to improve Golden Retriever life expectancy as
much as possible. No one can guarantee that they can make a dog live longer, but you can try to keep your Golden
Retriever as healthy and happy as possible.
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