Imagine if you could get everything you like about a Golden Retriever – their loving playfulness, fabulous fur, friendly temperament, and absolute loyalty – but in a much smaller size. Sounds good, right?
Enter the mini Golden Retriever, a canine who is exactly what you want. The mini or miniature Golden Retriever is a designer breed that has taken the K9 world by storm. In this post, we are going to share some important things about mini Golden Retrievers.
What are Mini Golden Retrievers?
You might think that mini Golden Retrievers are simply Golden Retrievers that are bred to be smaller in size. However, this isn’t the case. These canines are a cross mix of various dogs so they offer much more than just a size variation.
For instance, a mini golden isn’t the same as the mini husky which is the smaller version of the popular husky dog. The breeds that are used for creating the miniature Golden Retriever is usually a poodle and Golden Retriever or a Goldendoodle – poodle x Golden Retriever mix – and Golden Retriever.
Some breeders mix Golden Retrievers with cocker spaniels but this doesn’t lead to as desirable of characteristics. Golden Retriever breeding is designed to result in a dog that matches as closely as possible with a typically Golden Retriever – usually between a 50 percent and 75 percent genetic match. The idea behind it is to create dogs that have the same temperaments, wonderful character and loyalty of a standard Golden Retriever, yet in a much smaller size.
Mini Golden Retrievers are also called comfort retrievers and petite Golden Retrievers.
Are Mini Golden Retrievers Officially Recognized?
Mini Golden Retrievers aren’t a member of the American Kennel Club. However, the Designer Dog’s Kennel Club recognizes a certain mix of these canines – the Goldendoodle x Golden Retriever.
Responsible breeders stay committed towards recognition of the miniature Golden Retriever breed and try to enforce best breeding practices for these canines. This typically translates to mini Golden Retrievers being sold already neutered with a health certificate and an ID Tag. As with any other breed of dog, it is important to choose to buy mini Golden Retriever from a well-known breeder to ensure the longevity and good health of the new dog.
How Do Mini Golden Retrievers Compare with the Standard Ones?
The aim of creating mini Golden Retrievers was simply to have a canine that was comparatively smaller in size than the standard golden. However, there exist a number of similarities and differences between the two pups. This is a given if you take into consideration the fact that the Golden Retriever is likely to have acquired some poodle characteristics. There aren’t any breed standards for the miniature Golden Retriever, but there is sufficient breeding activity to gauge some average across the existing canines.
Here’s how mini Golden Retrievers compare with the standard golden.
The expected lifespan of standard Golden Retrievers is from 10 to 12 years while miniature Golden Retrievers can expect to live between 10 and 15 years. Dogs that are larger in size generally die earlier than smaller ones as it is thought that these dogs age faster.
Both the miniature and standard Golden Retrievers are at risk of inheriting different genetic diseases like eye problems and joint dysplasia. People who are interested in buying a new miniature Golden Retriever should, therefore, ask for proof of good health of the pup’s parent from the breeder.
The weight of the miniature Golden Retrievers is typically between 20 and 45 pounds. Their height is usually between 14 and 20 inches. They are much lighter and smaller in size than standard Golden Retrievers. Typically, standard Golden Retrievers can weigh anywhere between 55 and 75 pounds and range from 21 to 25 inches in height.
Exact sizes of miniature Golden Retrievers differ depending on how much genetic matter they end up inheriting from their parents. Pups who inherit a larger portion of Golden Retriever genetics will be a little bit bigger than those who inherit a greater portion of poodle genetics.
Shedding and Hair
One of the major features where mini Golden Retrievers show the genetics of poodle is hair. It is generally anywhere between the curly, soft, and wavy texture of a poodle and sandy, straight short locks of a Golden Retriever. Some breeders say that their mini Golden Retrievers shed less than a standard Golden Retriever due to the poodle genetics.
Since standard Golden Retrievers are known to be heavy shedders, this is one of the major benefits of getting a mini Golden Retriever. However, it isn’t possible to predict how much less a particular Golden Retriever will shed as it varies from canine to canine as they all inherit various characteristics from each breed mix.
If a mini Golden Retriever inherits shedding gene from their poodle parent, they will shed less than the miniature Golden Retriever that inherits it from their Golden Retriever parent. Most good breeders are able to roughly quantify the shedding of a miniature Golden Retriever so people interested in buying these canines should ask the breeder about the shedding.
Golden Retrievers are renowned for their calm temperaments, friendly character and loving loyalty. Most of these characteristics are also found in mini Golden Retrievers. Just like standard Golden Retrievers, mini goldens make great pets and get along with young kids quite well. Just like most canines, they like attention in all forms including playing fetch, going for a walk and scratching behind the ears.
Like standard Goldens, they also need plenty of exercise to keep them physically and mentally stimulated and manage their weight. Mini Golden Retrievers are easy to socialize and train if the owner puts in the effort and time required. Mini Golden Retrievers bark, like the standard Goldens, to alert their owner to new situations or noises. This is why they are great guard dogs.
Essentially, the temperamental characteristics found in a mini Golden Retriever are the same as those we see in a standard Golden.
Breeders who create mini Golden Retrievers using cocker spaniels invite a higher risk of bringing forth characteristics that aren’t seen in standard Golden Retrievers. Some breeders say that mini Golden Retrievers with cocker spaniel genetics can be prone to biting and nipping. This means that a mini Golden that is bred from a cocker spaniel will be less family friendly.
Are Miniature Golden Retrievers Bad for the Golden Breed?
Some people say that creating designer dogs like mini Golden Retriever can be a bad thing for the popular golden breed. There is no merit in this argument since mini Golden Retrievers aren’t simply a smaller version of the standard golden but are a different breed that is simply related to a Golden Retriever.
One could argue that mini Golden Retrievers could be a bad thing for the golden breed if they were small pedigree Golden Retriever or suffered from dwarfism as this would suggest that abnormally small goldens were used by breeders to create small pups. This would lead to passing down of defective genes.
As long as miniature Golden Retrievers are bred responsibly, they aren’t bad for the golden breed and offer golden lovers a more manageable size of the wonderful dog.
Is Breeding Mini Golden Retriever Bad for the Canines Themselves?
Breeders have undertaken a lot of study and research to create mini Golden Retrievers that aren’t just suitable for people who want smaller dogs, but also provide benefits to the canines themselves.
Smaller sized Golden Retrievers are easier to care for and are also likely to have a longer lifespan than standard Golden Retrievers. Moreover, many mini golden will shed less hair than standard Golden Retrievers and may not inherit diseases that can affect Golden Retrievers.
Are Mini Golden Retrievers Just Another Trend?
There has been a trend developing over the past few years for small sized designer dogs. We have seen several families across the United States posing with mini huskies. Similarly, pictures of celebrities toting around their Goldendoodles often surface on social media. So, are mini Golden Retrievers just another trend?
Not really. The reason is that there is a specific purpose behind the breeding of mini Golden Retrievers, over the fact that they are really cute.
Mini Golden Retrievers are bred to suit dog owners who aren’t able to manage the care requirements and size of a standard Golden Retriever. Although miniature Goldens still require plenty of love, exercise, and care, they are much more manageable than the regular golden breed.
As long as miniatures get regular exercise, they will be happy living in a small apartment. On the other hand, standard Golden Retrievers need more space to exercise and roam; that usually only comes with a house. Mini Goldens also shed less hair and require less food than the standard breed.
The most important characteristic that people would love about the miniature golden is that have the same temperament that is found in the standard Golden Retriever.
Training and Exercise for a Mini Golden Retriever
Canines are a long term commitment. You have to keep them sheltered, watered and fed all year round. Moreover, you must ensure that they get enough mental stimulation and exercise to stay healthy and happy.
Training and exercise are particularly important for mini Golden Retrievers. If they don’t get enough exercise, you will start noticing behavior problems and increasing weight which eventually leads to bad health.
Make sure that your mini Golden Retriever is getting at least 30 minutes of exercise every day. Training should be a daily occurrence too if you are to ensure that their command responses and behavior are well-honed for them to stay with your children inside your home. So, before buying a mini Golden Retriever make sure to determine if you can dedicate enough time and energy to their training and exercise.
Should You Get a Mini Golden Retriever?
If you love the characteristics of a standard Golden Retriever and want the same, but in a smaller package, then you should consider getting a Golden Retriever. When looking to buy mini Golden Retriever pup, do your research about breeders and buy from registered organizations only. They breed their canines responsibly and will provide all the health information and correct papers to you.
We recommend you avoid getting a mini Golden Retriever that has cocker spaniel genetics as these dogs are more inclined to nip and bite and thus are less family friendly.
How Much Do Golden Retrievers Cost?
Since miniature Golden Retrievers are special dog breeds, they are more expensive than standard Goldens. The average price of a new miniature golden puppy ranges between $600 and $6,000. Many of the more respectable and renowned breeders price their Golden Retriever pups high.
When you are looking to buy a new mini Golden Retriever puppy, you should also factor in costs of vet visits and non-medical expenses like crates, treats, hairbrush, flea treatment, food, etc. to properly determine whether you will be able to afford a miniature Golden Retriever puppy and its upkeep.
Our Final Thoughts
Miniature Golden Retrievers have become quite popular these days as they have all the characteristics of a standard Golden Retriever. Their classic temperament and loyalty packaged in a smaller body make for a wonderful family pet. If you love a Golden Retriever and want their characteristics in a more companion-sized version, then get yourself a mini Golden Retriever. Before buying a miniature Golden Retriever, make sure to do some research on the breeder and buy it from a reputable and respectable breeder.