7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller

Looking for a similar but smaller dog than the Golden Retriever? Smaller dogs are easier to maintain as they require less food and grooming.

Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers But Smaller 1 1 7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller

In recent years, there has been a surge in popularity of small breed dogs similar to the Golden Retriever. These breeds share many of the same personality traits and physical features as their larger counterparts, but they are typically a bit more manageable in size. If you’re looking for a loving dog that is good with kids and other pets, one of these smaller breeds might be perfect for your family.

What breeds of dogs are like Golden Retrievers, only smaller?

Dog breeds similar to the Golden Retriever but smaller include the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Beagle, Cocker Spaniel, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, German Shorthaired Pointer, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Mini Golden Retriever, English Springer Spaniel, etc.

Often people prefer smaller dogs because they remain more energetic and are easy to care for. So don’t worry – you are not alone. This article will discuss dog breeds similar to Golden Retrievers but smaller.

As canine experts, we know all about breeds similar to the Golden Retrievers. Hence, we have put together this guide to help you find the right breed you are out looking for.

7 Dog Breeds Similar to Golden Retriever but Smaller

Mini Golden Retriever

The Mini Golden Retriever is a smaller version of the popular Golden Retriever breed. These dogs are just as friendly and loving as their larger counterparts but don’t require as much space.

This makes them a great choice for families who live in smaller homes or apartments. Mini Golden Retrievers are also less likely to knock things over, making them less of a liability around the house.

Despite their smaller size, Mini Golden Retrievers still need plenty of exercise. A daily walk or play session is essential to keep your dog happy and healthy.

If you’re looking for a small dog with all the personality of a Golden Retriever, the Mini Golden Retriever is the perfect breed for you!

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

The American Kennel Club classifies the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel as a small spaniel classed as a toy dog. This breed has a silky coat and a one-of-a-kind flat face.

The breed originated in England and was developed from spaniels smaller than King Charles Spaniel (now extinct). The modern breed is descended from one of these Toy Spaniels owned by King Charles II, who reigned from 1660 until he died in 1685.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller
(Photo: Cavalier King Charles Spaniel)

Cavaliers are not particularly active indoors and do not require much space, making them suitable for city living.

Most cavaliers love companionship and being with people; they will follow their owners around the house all day if allowed. Cavaliers need only moderate exercise; a daily walk is usually sufficient to meet their needs, although they will enjoy it more if available.

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has a silky coat that requires little grooming. The breed sheds moderately year-round, with heavier shedding occurring during seasonal changes. 

Cavaliers are generally healthy dogs, but like all breeds, they are prone to certain health conditions. Some health problems seen in the breed include mitral valve disease, syringomyelia, epilepsy, and patellar luxation.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels were originally bred as companion dogs, which is still their main purpose today. They are good with children and other animals, making them excellent family pets.


The Beagle is a medium-sized dog breed that originates from England. The dogs were originally bred for hunting and are still used for this purpose in some parts of the world. Beagles are also popular pets, and they are known for their friendly disposition.

Beagles are small to medium-sized dogs that typically weigh between 20 and 30 pounds. They have short, smooth coats in various colors, including black, brown, white, and tan. 

Beagle Dog Breed 7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller
(Beagle Dog Breed)

Beagles have long ears that hang down close to their faces, and they also have large, dark eyes.

Beagles are gentle and affectionate dogs that make great family pets. They are good with children and other animals and are known for being pleasant and friendly.

Beagles are active dogs that need plenty of exercises and enjoy playing games and going for walks.

The Beagle may be the perfect breed for you if you are looking for a medium-sized dog with a gentle disposition. Beagles are great family pets and bring lots of love and laughter into your home.

Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers But Smaller 7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller

Cocker Spaniel

The Cocker Spaniel is a medium-sized dog breed that originated in England. They are popular with families thanks to their gentle and affectionate nature. Cockers are intelligent dogs that are easy to train, making them ideal companions.

Cocker Spaniels come in various colors: black, brown, red, and white. They have long, floppy ears and a thick coat that sheds moderately throughout the year. Cockers typically weigh between 25 and 30 pounds and stand 14 to 16 inches tall at the shoulder.

Cocker Spaniel Dog Breed 7 Dog Breeds Similar To Golden Retrievers, But Smaller
(Cocker Spaniel Dog Breed)

Cocker Spaniels make great family pets thanks to their loving and laid-back personality. They are gentle dogs that do well with children and other pets. Cockers are relatively easy to train and are quick to learn new tricks.

While not the most active dog breed, Cockers still need daily exercise to stay healthy and happy. A moderate-sized yard is sufficient for them to run and play. They also enjoy going on walks and hikes with their family.

Cocker Spaniels are generally healthy dogs, but like all breeds, they are prone to certain health conditions. These include hip, elbow, eye, and ear infections. Cocker Spaniels typically live 12 to 15 years.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, or “Tollers” as fanciers nickname them, are the smallest breed of Retrievers. The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever to toll (lure) and retrieve waterfowl in the early 19th century in Canada.

The breed is often mistaken for a small Golden Retriever; however, Tollers have a fiery personality reminiscent of their smaller cousin, the Cocker Spaniel.

Portrait of Dog Breed Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
(Portrait of Dog Breed Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever)

But don’t let their size fool you – these dogs are hardy and athletic, able to work all day in difficult terrain and icy waters. They are also excellent swimmers and have a waterproof double coat that protects them from the cold.

Tollers are intelligent, easy to train, and excel in many canine sports such as agility, obedience, flyball, and tracking. They are also popular family pets; their outgoing personalities make them good with children, and their small size makes them well-suited to city living.

Learn More about Tollers on our full Toller Category page or read this article that explains what Duck Tolling Retrievers are all about.

English Springer Spaniel

The English Springer Spaniel is from the gun dog breed in the Spaniel family. Traditionally, this breed is used for retrieving and flushing games. It is an affectionate, excitable breed with a typical lifespan of 12–14 years.

The English Springer Spaniel is a sturdy, medium-sized dog with a characteristic silky coat. The breed standard recognizes three color patterns: black and white, liver (red) and white, and tricolor (black, white, and tan).

English Springer Spaniel Dog Breed
(English Springer Spaniel Dog Breed)

There is also a small amount of variation within each of these colors. Their head is proportionate to the body, with a moderate stop between the forehead and the nose. The ears are long and droopy, hanging close to the cheeks. The eyes are dark brown and almond-shaped.

The teeth should meet in a scissors bite. The tail is typically docked to two-fifths of its original length.

Springer Spaniels were first bred in England in the early 19th century and derived their name from their traditional use in hunting, springing, or flushing game birds into the air so waiting nets could catch them.

They were also used to track wounded prey animals and flush out rabbits and foxes from dens. The English Springer Spaniel is closely related to the Welsh Springer Spaniel and has been imported into North America since the late 1800s.

Today, English Springer Spaniels are popular family pets and companions and successful show dogs and working dogs. They are intelligent, eager to please, and easily trained. However, they need plenty of exercise and stimulation to prevent them from becoming bored or destructive.

German Shorthaired Pointer

The German Shorthaired Pointer is a popular small hunting dog with a short, dense coat and is commonly black, white, brown, or red. This breed has a gentle and loving temperament, is easy to train, and loves to swim

The German Shorthaired Pointer is a healthy and easy-to-maintain breed. It has a lifespan of 12 to 15 years.

German Shorthaired Pointer
(German Shorthaired Pointer Dog Breed)

Small dogs are generally easier to maintain than larger breeds. They are also more suited for an outdoor lifestyle than the more cuddly and indoor-oriented breeds.

If you are looking for a small hunting dog, the Golden Retriever is a popular choice.

If you are looking for a small dog that is similar to the Golden Retriever, but smaller, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Cocker Spaniel, Mini Golden Retriever, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, English Springer Spaniel, German Shorthaired Pointer, and Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever are some options, you could consider.

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