Black Golden Retriever

Black Golden Retriever

Technically, there is no such thing as a golden retriever with black fur. However, crossing some dog breeds results in a dog with the appearance of a black golden retriever.

The two dog breeds that most resemble a black golden retriever are flat-coated retrievers and golden retriever black Labrador mixes. Flat-coated retrievers look like golden retrievers, but the flat-coated dogs’ hair is black or liver-colored, and flat-coated retrievers are typically taller and leaner than golden retrievers.

Flat-coated retrievers (also known as black golden retrievers) grow up to 2 feet tall at the shoulder and weigh between 55 and 70 pounds. This energetic breed has an average lifespan of 10–12 years.

Friendly, outgoing, and intelligent, black golden retrievers make excellent family pets because of their loving nature. However, this breed’s excitable nature can make it unsuitable for homes with very young children, so it’s best to keep a black golden retriever with children aged five or older.

These dogs thrive best with owners who exercise them regularly. Because this breed suffers from separation anxiety, black golden retrievers are best suited to owners with a lot of free time for walks and play.

Black Golden Retriever Quick Summary

Common namesBlack golden retriever, flat-coated retriever
Breed groupSporting group: gundog
Height1.5 feet–2 feet tall
Weight55–70 pounds
CoatBlack, white accents
Life expectancy10–12 years
TemperamentAffectionate, loving, energetic
Barking tendencyInfrequent

Black Golden Retriever Appearance

Black Golden Retriever appearance

Flat-coated retrievers, also known as black golden retrievers, are medium to large dogs with long, black, fur that protects them from all weather types. This breed has floppy ears, a long muzzle, and a lean body.

Height and Weight

Black golden retrievers weigh up to 70 pounds and grow up to 2 feet tall. Males are generally slightly taller than females.


A black golden retriever’s coat is a long and water-resistant doubt coat and can come in only two colors: black and liver.

The coat of a flat-coated retriever resembles a black version of the coat of a golden retriever, explaining the nickname of a black golden retriever.

Black Golden Retriever Origins

Black Golden Retriever Origins

S.E. Shirley, a British politician, is widely credited with the development of flat-coated retrievers. H.R. Cooke, the owner of Riverside Kennel, was also responsible for breeding many show flat-coated retrievers.

The flat-coated retriever was a popular hunting dog in the early-20th century, but then Labrador retrievers and golden retrievers became more popular. The number of flat-coated retrievers significantly decreased after the First World War, and the black golden retriever continues to be a rare dog.

Black Golden Retriever Personality and Temperament

Black Golden Retriever personality

Flat-coated retrievers are exuberant, energetic, and playful. This breed’s puppy-like personality continues into adulthood, earning the dog the nickname the Peter Pan of dogs. Despite its intelligence, the flat-coated retriever can be difficult to train because of its sassy, mischievous personality.

Because of its high energy and mischievous streak, this dog is best suited to households that can support a lot of exercise and play. The flat-coated retriever is not suitable for first-time dog owners.

Black golden retrievers are very friendly and outgoing, so they tend to be able to live with people of all ages and other dogs. This breed is known to be cheerful but can be sensitive and stubborn if exposed to harsh training methods, so be sure to use only positive reinforcement in training.

Taking Care of a Black Golden Retriever Dog

Black Golden Retriever taking bath

Taking care of a black golden retriever is moderately difficult. This breed needs lots of exercise, play, and mental stimulation. Despite being intelligent, the flat-coated retriever’s stubbornness can make the dog difficult to train.

Food Needs

An adult black golden retriever should eat two meals per day. Puppies will need three to four meals per day.

Black golden retrievers thrive on a high-protein diet containing few highly-processed foods.

Grooming Needs

The grooming needs of a flat-coated retriever are relatively low. This breed needs a weekly brush, apart from in shedding season when the dog’s coat will benefit from a daily brush.

Bathe your black golden retriever or take it to the groomer at least once every couple of months. Brush the dog’s teeth twice weekly to avoid the build-up of harmful plaque.

Exercise Needs

Adult black golden retrievers need about an hour and a half of exercise per day. This exercise can be split into two 45-minute walks, outdoor play sessions, or runs. Avoid over-exercising puppies because doing so can damage the dog’s joints. A four-month-old puppy, for example, only requires 20 minutes of exercise per day.

Because of the dog’s high exercise needs, this breed best suits suburban or rural environments and houses with outdoor space. This breed’s exercise needs make the dog unsuitable for owners who don’t have free time or the ability to walk their pet regularly.

Mental Needs

Black golden retrievers are extremely intelligent dogs that need plenty of mental stimulation. This stimulation can come in the form of playing with toys, learning tricks, playing fetch, or problem-solving with puzzle toys.

Common Health Concerns

Black golden retrievers are prone to the following health conditions:

  • Hip dysplasia: a joint deformity that can cause pain in an affected black golden retriever as the dog grows older. Dysplasia is a genetic condition, so ask the dog’s breeder whether the parents suffered from this condition. This condition can usually be managed with medication or physiotherapy, but severe cases may require surgery
  • Malignant Histiocytosis: a rare form of cancer that’s commonly found in flat-coated retrievers. The cancer originates in the histiocytes, white blood cells, and loose connective tissue in the body. This cancer can be treated with surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy, but the outlook tends to be poor
  • Lymphosarcoma: This cancer is commonly found in dogs and occurs in parts of the body such as the gastrointestinal tract, spleen, lymph nodes, skin, and liver. This cancer can be treated with chemotherapy

How to Train a Black Golden Retriever

Black Golden Retriever training

Black golden retrievers are sensitive and don’t respond well to harsh training methods. Instead, train your flat-coated retriever using positive reinforcement. Reward the dog for good behavior or tricks with food, affection, or toys.

Flat-coated retrievers are known to eat their own feces, which is known as coprophagy. The easiest way to prevent this from happening is to dispose of stool immediately.

To raise a well-rounded dog, socialize your flat-coated retriever from a young age with many people and other dogs.

Black Golden Retriever Price

Black Golden Retriever puppy

Because black golden retrievers are rare, these dogs are relatively expensive.

How Much is a Black Golden Retriever?

A black golden retriever is $1,500 to $3,000. Puppies are more expensive than adults, and adopting is significantly cheaper than buying from a breeder. Adoption fees are typically between $200 and $500, although there are very few flat-coated retrievers in adoption centers.

How Much Does it Cost to Raise a Black Golden Retriever?

For food, grooming, and healthcare costs, expect to pay $100–$200 per month to raise an average black golden retriever. You’ll typically pay more in the first year of owning a flat-coated retriever because you’ll need to buy first-time vaccines, toys, dog food, a dog bed, a crate, and any other necessary equipment.

As the retriever’s healthcare needs increase in its later years, the costs will increase. Depending on lifestyle, black golden retriever owners may need to factor in costs such as a dog-sitter or dog-walker.

Should You Get a Black Golden Retriever?

Black Golden Retriever in field

Black golden retrievers are loveable, affectionate, and friendly dogs with tons of energy. However, because of this breed’s mental and physical stimulation needs, and stubborn streak, owning a flat-coated retriever is not recommended for first-time dog owners.

Black Golden Retrievers are Suitable for:

Black golden retrievers are gentle dogs that are rarely aggressive, so they’re suitable for families with children. However, their exuberant personality can be overwhelming for very young children, so these dogs are more suitable for older children.

If you have room for a medium to large-sized dog and are ready to give this breed lots of attention and exercise, the black golden retriever can be a suitable dog for you. This breed is suitable for families with previous dog-training experience who know how to cope with stubborn breeds.

Black Golden Retrievers are NOT Suitable for:

Flat-coated retrievers are not suitable for people with little time to walk or play with a dog. This breed is sociable and loves to be with its owners, so it’s not suitable for people who spend lots of time away from home.

Because black golden retrievers are relatively large and need plenty of exercise, they’re not well-suited to apartment living or homes without outdoor space.

About John Woods 301 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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