Flat-Coated Retriever: Full Breed Guide

Flat-Coated Retriever lopend in een bos

The Flat-Coated Retriever was the most popular Retriever in England in the nineteenth century. He was formerly used as a hunting dog, but is nowadays also common in the US. It is a cheerful, intelligent dog that fits well in a family with children. This dog breed gets along well with children and is friendly and affectionate towards its owner.

A Flat-Coated Retriever is energetic and needs a lot of exercise. It is important that he has a owner who undertakes activities with him. Are you curious and do you want to know more about the Flat-Coated Retriever? Then read this article.


The history: an English hunting dog

The Flat-Coated Retriever is one of the six Retriever breeds. This dog breed was bred by the English to assist in hunting and to retrieve shot game. These dogs were able to see where a duck was falling down and swam to it on command. Then they gently grabbed the duck in their mouths without damaging it and brought it to their owner.

The Flat-Coated Retriever was first bred in the 19th century and was the most popular Retriever in England. This dog breed was bred by crossing the Newfoundland and the Sheepdog. The Newfoundland can swim well and a Sheepdog is lightly built. So the Flat-Coated Retriever is a combination of these two; a dog that is lightly built and can swim well. These qualities make it a suitable hunting dog. In 1915, the AKC recognized the Flat-Coated Retriever.

Around World War II, it seemed that this breed would disappear. It became less and less popular, so the Flat-Coated Retriever was threatened with extinction. Fortunately, breeders managed to bring the breed back. Nowadays, the breed is fairly popular and serves mainly as a companion dog and show dog.


The character: energetic, friendly and cheerful

A Flat-Coated Retriever is a playful dog that loves to engage in activities with its owner. This dog breed has a lot of energy and needs a lot of exercise. They are cheerful, friendly and towards their owner they are very affectionate. They love to be petted and to get attention. Therefore, they do not like to be alone. A Flat-Coated Retriever fits well in a family with children. He likes to play with children, but can sometimes be a bit intrusive. Therefore, you should socialize the dog well and never leave him alone with young children.

A Flat-Coated Retriever can be independent and stubborn. He likes to think for himself. If he exhibits this behavior, you must be kind and consistent. A young Flat-Coated Retriever can be a bit wild, this requires quite some patience and clear guidance. This dog breed is not mentally mature until three years of age. You will read later in this article how to train a Flat-Coated Retriever best.

Towards strangers, a Flat-Coated Retriever is friendly. He is not suitable as a watchdog. With other dogs and pets he can generally cope well, although you must first give the animals time to get used to each other.

Flat-Coated Retriever liggend in een grasveld

The appearance of a Flat-Coated Retriever

A Flat-Coated Retriever is a medium-sized dog that exudes elegance and speed. A male dog weighs an average of 30 pounds with a height at the withers between 58 and 61 centimeters. A female weighs an average of 27 pounds with a height at the withers between 55 and 58 centimeters.

His head is long with a flat skull. The chest is quite deep and broad. The legs of a Flat-Coated Retriever are straight and muscular. The nose is quite large and the nostrils are wide. The ears are small and hang down against the head. The eyes are set far apart and are brown in color. A Flat-Coated Retriever looks friendly and has a cheerful expression. The tail is carried horizontally. Usually the tail does not rise above the back.

The coat of a Flat-Coated Retriever is of medium length. The hairs are close together and are shiny. The ideal coat is straight and flat. The hairs can be wavy and are often black or brown in color. The hairs at the tail, back of the legs, neck and chest are often a bit longer.


The care

The coat of a Flat-Coated Retriever should be brushed regularly to remove dirt and loose hair. This should be done at least once a week. A Flat-Coated Retriever sheds twice a year. During these periods, it is wise to brush more often to keep the dog looking well groomed. The coat repels water and dirt, so it is not necessary to bathe the dog. You can consider this when the Flat-Coated Retriever is covered in mud or has swum in the ditch.

Besides the care of the coat, it is important to keep the ears clean. This can be done with a clean damp cloth. Also, the nails regularly checked and trimmed if necessary.

Care that your dog gets the right food and on a correct weight remains. It is important that a dog does not become too heavy, because that is not good for its joints. You can always ask the veterinarian for advice on what kind of food is suitable for your dog.