Anyone with medical conditions understands how important it is to find the right service dog. So, are Golden Retrievers good service dogs?
Are Golden Retrievers Good Service Dogs?
Golden Retrievers are friendly and make excellent service dogs. The fact that they are also easily trainable also makes them great as service dogs. This, coupled with their superb temperament and relatable personalities, makes them stand out.
To determine whether Golden Retrievers were excellent service candidates, we talked to a few breeders and vets to learn more about their temperament.
We also consulted medical practitioners who use dogs to assist patients. This is how we established the service abilities that Golden Retrievers possess.
Check out this article about why Goldens carry things in their mouths for more interesting facts that make Goldens great service dogs.
What is a Service Dog?
These dogs have special training to perform particular functions to benefit someone suffering from a physical or mental disability.
The dog is a service pet if they perform services that are directly beneficial to the person with a mental or physical condition that needs assistance. Such people may be having conditions such as blindness, deafness, and heart conditions.
This explains why the choice of service companion is a dog since they are the ones who can serve those they are attached to.
Qualities that Make Retrievers Good Service Dogs
Knowing which traits to check out for when looking for a guide dog is essential. It would be best if you looked at the characteristics individually.
Most people have discriminated against assistance dogs based on breed when this should not be.
The reality is that all breeds of dogs can be trained to be service dogs. However, the fact is that some dog breeds can perform better than others, which makes a difference.
When choosing a service dog, focus on the traits that make the specific dog a service dog that can perform the right services.
Below are some of the traits you should look out for.
- Their trainability. The dog must be trainable since tasks ought to be very specific, and only a trainable dog can master them.
- Intelligence level. Choose dogs with high levels of intelligence since they are in a better position to master the new roles.
- Their friendly personality. The dogs must be your friend to serve you well and respond fast enough when you are in trouble.
- Their eagerness to please you. This gives them a sense of urgency to fix things and prevent harm.
- Their loving nature. Loving dogs will always look out for you, even when you are not in your best form.
- Their temperament – The dog needs to be well balanced
- Their loyalty
Why the Golden Retriever Qualifies
One trait that makes Golden Retrievers a perfect match is their affectionate nature. They remain one of the easiest-to-love dogs because of how they are attached to their owner.
These dog breeds can easily interact with their owner, family members, and other new people or animals.
Golden Retrievers are considered intelligent, and one of the easiest dog breeds to train. They are quick learners that are obedient and able to retain enough information. Golden Retrievers easily please their owners since they are always eager to do so.
They may be handy during the spring and autumn months because of the excessive shedding of their hair.
However, this is a small price for the excellent services the dog offers you when struggling with a specific condition. The good news is that the grooming needs are moderate and will not be overwhelmingly stressful.
One other thing you should know about the Retrievers is their physical activity need and energy levels.
You should be prepared to get physically active with your Golden Retriever if you choose them as service dogs. Generally, though, Golden Retrievers are some of the most popular service dogs because of their excellent and indisputable characteristics.
What are the Types of Services that Golden Retrievers can Perform?
Golden Retrievers are unique dogs which is what makes them excellent service dogs. Due to their highly trainable ability and intellectual capacity, Retrievers can perform various functions. This includes:
Balance-Related and Mobility Functions
Female Retrievers weigh 25 to 32 kgs, while males weigh 30 to 34 kgs. Females have a height of 51 to 56 cm, while males are 56 to 61 cm tall. These size specifications make them great for mobility support.
This makes it possible for the dogs to be trained to pull wheelchairs when their owners need to move around.
They can also be trained to support people struggling with balance issues in other different ways. Mobility service animals are often equipped with harness equipment with unique handles to support their owners’ mobility services.
Golden Retrievers can be trained to help guide their owner. This is how they can confidently help visually impaired individuals get around without mishaps.
They can achieve their guiding services by alerting their owners whenever there are obstacles that could be dangerous and will always ensure that there is sufficient distance between them and passersby.
Golden Retrievers were initially bred for the particular task of retrieving birds in hunting escapades. This means they are genetically inclined to be excellent Retrievers. The implication is that they are going to serve their owners perfectly.
In case you are the kind of person who feels dizzy and lightheaded, your Golden retriever can get your meds at the right time.
They can also help those with impaired mobility or mental disorientation who depend on the specific medication.
Your Golden retriever can be trained to understand the signals and get the medication you need in real-time. You may not be able to get the medication when needed, but the dog can do that for you and help avert serious negative consequences.
Golden Retrievers can be helpful to their owners suffering from mental ailments and psychiatric pain.
They benefit owners struggling with PTSD, excessive anxiety, and extreme depression. These dogs provide tactile stimulation and offer Deep Pressure Therapy.
Due to their medium/ average size, they can quickly jump on their owners’ lap when trained. This can help avert self-harm, which happens to many psychiatric patients when there is no one to stop them.
The dogs reassure and confirm that someone cares when they place their paw on the patient’s chin or shoulder or even when they sit on their laps.
These dogs will usually stay with you until you calm down and recollect yourself. They will then provide the necessary guidance for safety and help you through the most challenging phases or episodes of your anxiety.
How Do you Train a Golden Retriever to be a Service Dog?
Now that we understand the powerful ways Golden Retrievers can serve as service dogs, we must know how to get them there.
Special training is needed for this to become a reality. Whether you need the retriever for medical assisted services or other services, they must be trained to act accordingly.
The first step is to get in touch with the proper training organization. Note that service training is different and cannot be done with just anyone.
Consult the experts and have the dog evaluated for service potential. Once the dog qualifies, you can train them at the trainer’s facility or sign up for individual home training at a fee.
Getting an already trained service dog from an organization that specializes in training this dog.
Note that these dogs are pretty expensive to get because of the specialized training they receive. However, considering the level of support they offer their owners, it is worth spending every coin to have one.
What’s more, they ensure that you have a life companion.
Get a service dog from a non-profit organization. There are a few organizations that help struggling individuals in this area.
Unfortunately, you have to wait in line if there are other applicants before you. However, this is the cheapest way to get a service dog since you will not pay for one.
Learn the training skills yourself. You may have a fantastic dog at home that qualifies to be a service dog for someone you love.
If none of the other options is viable because of cost and other complications, take up the training challenge yourself. A few online courses can help you become a service dog trainer.
Getting a service dog is always advantageous for those struggling with medical or mental conditions. Consider getting one for a loved one.
- Golden retriever dogs make excellent service dogs when adequately trained.
- Golden Retrievers work great as service dogs because they are easy to train.
- They are good at helping people who need assistance.