Black Golden Retriever – A Care Guide

black golden retriever
  • There is considerable online debate whether black golden retrievers actually exist. The internet is replete with many articles arguing for and against the existence of this dog as a specimen of the golden retrievers. Despite assertions to the contrary, many experts maintain that the Black Golden Retriever does in fact exist.
  • Other than their distinct “black” color, they retain all of the excellent characteristics of standard golden retrievers. Without venturing into a discussion about genetics (I am not a geneticist) their beautiful black color is attributed to “genetic diversity factors” which leads to the unique coloration.
  • A common misconception is that they are the result of breeding with the Flat-Coated Retriever. This is inaccurate.
  • Although a black golden retriever may have two purebred golden retriever parents, they are not recognized as an AKC registered purebred. This is not a reflection on their status as purebreds but rather on the strict standards of color recognition.
  • Black golden retrievers are loving family dogs and well-known for their friendliness. They are in the family of sporting dogs and were initially used as retrievers during hunting expeditions.
  • They are highly energetic and love to be active. An ideal owner will be able and willing to offer this level of daily outdoor exercise.
  • A healthy black golden retriever can live 10-12 years, similar to regular golden retrievers. Naturally, nutrition, exercise, grooming, and medical care will contribute to overall golden retriever

Black Golden Retriever At A Glance


This Black Golden Retriever is the same as any golden retriever in every regard, except for its unique gorgeous black color.

  • Popularity: Being rare and highly debated as far as qualifying as a purebred, their popularity can only be seen in the context of regular golden retrievers.
    Golden retrievers are rated by the AKC as the 3rd most popular dog, out of a total of 196 total breeds. Incidentally, black golden retrievers are not rated by The American Kennel Club as purebreds.
  • Specialty: Sporting Group of dogs, initially used to assist in hunting.
  • Weight: 10-12 pounds
  • Price: Approximately 1500 dollars. While considered expensive, they are a very desirable breed due to their wonderful temperament.
  • Personality: Loving, friendly, energetic, loyal

Similar Breeds Comparison

Labrador Retriever English Springer Spaniel Flat-Coated Retriever
Price: This dog will cost from $800-1500 dollars Price: Average price of 800 dollars. Price: Approximately 1000-2000 dollars
Lifespan: Approximately 10-12 years Lifespan: Approximately 12-14 years. Lifespan: Generally 8-10 years
Family Friendly: Very friendly and lovable. They make a great family pet. Family Friendly: They are friendly and lovable. A loyal family pet. Family Friendly: They are friendly and have excellent temperament.
Size: Males are 22.5-24.5 inches in height, and weigh approximately 65-80 pounds. Females average 21.5-23.5 inches in height and weigh 55-70 pounds. Size: Males average 20 inches in height, and weigh 50 pounds. Females are 19 inches in height and an average of 40 pounds. Size: Males average 23-25 inches in height. Females average 23-25 inches in height. Weight: 60-70 pounds.
Shed: This dog frequently sheds. Shed: Exhibits occasional shedding. Shed: Exhibits regular shedding.
Activity: This is a very energetic dog. They require a lot of physical activity. It may not be ideal for inactive owners. Activity: They require regular exercise. Activity: High energy.

Black Golden Retriever Overview

Black golden retrievers are very friendly and they have great temperaments. They make great family dogs and they love to be sociable. They are friendly with strangers.

As highly active dogs, they require an owner who will provide them with plenty of daily exercise. They may get bored if they are not given mental and physical stimulation.

With proper care, they can live 10-12 years.  This is a dog that is easy to train if you stick with a training regimen that is fair and interesting. 


  • As with regular golden retrievers, black golden retrievers are very friendly, loving, and loyal. They make excellent family pets. 
  • They are noted for being particularly affectionate with very small children and the elderly.
  • With proper care, they will usually live for 10-12 years.
  • Generally, this is a healthy dog. As with all dogs, periodic trips to the veterinarian will ensure your dog’s overall health and longevity.


  • This breed usually sheds a lot twice a year. They usually exhibit moderate shedding throughout the course of the year.
  • They require a lot of exercise. As such, they may not be suitable for the kinds of owners who aren’t able to provide them with the daily activity they require.
  • Their overall friendliness and easy temperament make them unsuitable to be guard dogs.
  • They require adequate attention and enjoy socializing with their owners. Families make wonderful homes for them.

A Day In The Life Of This Breed

This is an active dog, so expect to take him out for exercise at least twice a day for a minimum of 30 minutes. If you don’t provide him with adequate exercise, your dog will not be well-adjusted.

Standard meal portions for this dog is 2-3 cups of dog food twice a day to assure overall nutrition.

While once a week is considered sufficient, daily brushing is better for maintaining the overall health of his coat.

History & Origin

black golden retriever

The origin of Golden Retrievers is generally traced back to Lord Dudley Marjoribanks who bred them in the Scottish Highlands from 1840-90, out of a desire to breed the ideal gundog.  As retrievers who were bred to assist in hunting and to retrieve waterfowl, Golden Retrievers are naturally very comfortable around the water.

Although black golden retrievers may have two purebred golden retriever parents, the AKC does not consider them to be registered purebred. This is not a reflection on their status as purebreds but rather on the organization’s rigid color standards for breed recognition.

You May Also Like: Golden Retriever: 10 Incredible Facts You Didn’t Know

4 Fun Facts

      1. They love to swim, so a day at the beach in the water can be a lot of fun with them.
      2. Black Golden Retrievers are very energetic and love to play hard. Many owners report that they sometimes have a hard time walking home after an active session outdoors.
      3. Despite their beautiful and unique black color, strict color requirements prohibit them from competing in many professional recognized dog shows. 
      4. They are very friendly and have been known to walk up and approach strangers hoping for some extra affection. They are also known for being great around small children and the elderly.

Temperament And Behavior

These are well-behaved, affectionate dogs. They love to be around their family. They interact great with total strangers and are always seeking affection.

How Much Does A Black Golden Retriever Cost?

A black golden retriever can cost approximately $1500. Should they be available, adoption centers will cost considerably less, and the costs should be the equivalent for the maintenance prior to adoption. Make sure to research adoption centers and breeders to ensure that the dogs were properly attended to prior to adoption. 

A responsible adoption center or breeder will be willing to show you all proper documentation to confirm that necessary medical tests were given and that all vaccinations were administered. Such facilities will be sanitary and professionally run.

Be wary of any center that is unwilling or unable to provide you with all necessary paperwork, or which refuses to answer your questions. A professional facility will gladly show you the facilities and will happily field all of your questions. The opposite is also true. They will likely want to ask you questions as well, to ensure that you will make a good owner.

Buyer’s Tips

      1. Like regular Golden Retrievers, Black Golden Retrievers heavily shed once or twice a year. During the rest of the year, you can expect consistent but more moderate shedding.
      2. They are very energetic. You will need to provide them with proper levels of exercise.
      3. Be careful not to let them overeat. They love to eat and they will put on weight which isn’t good for their health.
      4. They have a powerful sense of smell. This is why they are used in law enforcement for drug-detecting and search and rescue operations.
      5. Because they are so friendly, they are not ideal for watchdogs.


Their appearance mirrors that of standard golden retrievers, except for their unique black color. This is a medium-sized, muscular dog. They are noted for their straight muzzle, broad head, and short ears. They present a very striking and handsome appearance.


This is a medium-sized muscular dog. Black golden retrievers average 23-25 inches in height and can weigh approximately 60-70 pounds.


As noted by their name, variations of black are standard with this dog. The coat is thick and waterproof.

Care Guide

All Golden Retrievers require daily sessions of high-level exercise. The ideal owner must be able to provide them with this. It is not a proper dog for a lazy or inactive owner.

As heavy shedders, they will shed copiously once or twice a year. Brushing should be done once or twice a week at a minimum, but daily brushing is best.


      • Total Daily Activity: Regular daily sessions of activity
      • Activity Level:  Very high levels of activity
      • Favorite Activity: Running along with owners, playing outdoors, competitive sports, and trails.


Black Golden Terriers are heavy shedders. As such, grooming can sometimes be difficult. Many experts note that during copious periods of shedding, you will need to do a lot of vacuuming. 

They generally shed heavily once or twice a year. Moderate shedding occurs more frequently. Generally speaking, brushing once or twice each week is usually sufficient. 

Occasional baths are recommended. Their nails should be trimmed frequently since nails that are too long can cause discomfort and pain for your dog when he walks. They can also splinter and lead to infections. 

Finally, a dog that has difficulty walking is apt to put on weight and engage in less physical activity. This can lead to additional health problems.

Grooming sessions are an excellent time to check your dog for signs of infection, other ailments, or general medical conditions. Be sure to check for sore spots and lesions on the skin and coat, redness, inflammation, and redness, or other signs of discharge from the eyes, ears, and nostrils. 

Excessive wax build-up in the ears can also lead to ear infections in many dogs. You will need to carefully clean their ears periodically to prevent this from happening. An ear infection may manifest itself in different ways. Signs of possible infection may be exhibited if you see your dog scratching at his ears, or vigorously shaking his head to indicate pain or discomfort. 

See Related Article: Do Corgis Shed? Basic Facts You Should Know


Healthy dogs require a proper diet. One common tendency is that pet owners often start off with a disciplined diet for their dog, but then grow lax over time in sticking to a healthy feeding regimen.

Your black golden retriever will require all of the sufficient/proper nutrients to maintain his overall health. While occasional treats are fine, too many can lead to excessive weight gain which can adversely affect his health. The same can be said for giving him too much human food. Don’t make a regular habit of it, even though it may be tempting for you at times.

Whether commercially made or homemade, there are many suitable options to provide your dog with proper nutrition. Make sure to educate yourself about how to read nutritional labels, and what to look out for. The unnecessary filler material in many popular brands can be very unhealthy for your dog.

Health Concerns

This is a generally very healthy dog. The American Kennel Club recommends that breeders test for elbow and hip dysplasia, cataracts, and certain heart conditions. Grooming methods such as cleaning his ears, teeth, and nails will assist in their overall health and prevent infections. Excessive weight can lead to secondary health conditions.

How Long Does A Black Golden Retriever Live?

Black golden retrievers can live approximately 10-12 years, provided they are given proper nutrition and daily exercise. Periodic visits to the veterinarian are essential, to monitor their overall health, and to administer appropriate vaccinations and treatments as necessary.

How To Train A Black Golden Retriever Mix

Most experts maintain that this is an easy dog to train due to their loyalty and receptivity. An ideal training regimen will focus on obedience training and socializing them with other dogs early on. A good training regimen will also encourage positive reinforcement and an appropriate reward system. 

Furthermore, a good regimen has to be fair and consistent. It will have to challenge them and keep them interested. Some experts recommend professional training classes while they are still puppies to teach them basic obedience. 

One important challenge is to maintain a generally consistent regimen, while still offering enough flexibility to keep your dog interested.


We have tried to provide you with a thorough synopsis of this fascinating dog. All that can be said for regular golden retrievers applies to black golden retrievers as well. There is a good reason golden retrievers are so popular with pet owners. They are versatile and they have good natures.

Black golden retrievers are known for their friendliness. Overall, they make great family dogs since they have great temperaments and they love to be sociable.  They are well known for being affectionate and loyal to their owners. It is not uncommon for them to approach total strangers seeking affection.

They are highly active and require an owner who will provide them with a lot of daily exercise. They may get bored or annoyed if they are not given the mental and physical stimulation they need, which may result in excessive chewing of things you would prefer that they didn’t chew.

They are a very healthy breed of dog and given proper care, they can live 10-12 years.  This is a dog that is easy to train provided that the training is fair, consistent, and interesting. A good regimen will use lots of positive reinforcement and socialize your dog with other dogs early on.

We highly recommend black golden retrievers for prospective pet owners, since they have all the wonderful qualities of golden retrievers, but with the added uniqueness of a striking black coat. They are a very versatile breed and they have been used on hunting trips, as family pets, and even in the service industries

With proper care and attention, they are certain to bring many years of love and loyalty to their owners.

About John Woods 282 Articles
John Woods is the founder of All Things Dogs, member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, graduate in Animal Behavior & Welfare and recognized author by the Dog Writers Association of America.

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