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Can you combine two of the most popular Retriever breeds? Yes! Meet the Goldador.
Not many know about this designer dog, so it’s time for the world to see what’s good about ‘em. This gentle and playful dog will make a great addition to any family.
Read on to find out if the Goldador is the right dog for you.
What are Goldador dogs?
Unfortunately, despite having two famous parents, this crossbreed is not as well-known as other designer dogs.
What was the purpose of combining two of the best-known canine breeds? To create a working dog that is sensitive like the Golden Retriever and tolerant like the Labrador Retriever.
With these qualities, Golden Labs not only make good family pets but also excel in search and rescue and drug detection and as a guide dog.
What is an F1 Goldador?
An F1 Goldador is the first-generation offspring of a purebred Golden Retriever and Labrador Retriever.
Aside from this first-generation crossbreed, you can get multiple generations and crosses of Goldadors. For instance, two Golden Labs make an F2 Goldador. In turn, crossing two F2 Golden Labradors produces an F3 Golden Retriever-Lab mix.
An F1 Golden Labrador with a purebred Golden or Labrador? You’ll get an F1B Goldador.
In their litter size of 7 to 10 puppies, each pup may have a different appearance and temperament. A hybrid’s traits become more unpredictable the further away it is from the first-generation cross.
How to identify a Golden Lab
Since the Goldador is a mixed breed, there is no established breed standard for their appearance.
However, it’s safe to set some expectations on how this dog looks, based on its parents’ features.
With the Golden Retriever-Labrador mix, the fruit doesn’t fall far from the tree. These crossbreeds will grow to be a large, athletic dog with a sturdy and well-proportioned body.
Their long, floppy ears frame a broad, square-shaped head. On top of their flat muzzle are brown, oval-shaped eyes matching their black nose.
Similar to their parents, Goldadors have a double coat – a thick and straight topcoat with a soft and dense undercoat.
Some of these dogs inherit the short hair of the Labrador. Others have fur that’s long and silky like the Golden Retriever’s coat.
Their possible coat colors are white, yellow, gold, red, chocolate, and black.
How big are Goldadors?
If you’ve seen a Golden Retriever and Labrador Retriever, you know they are not ‘purse dogs.’ Like its parents, a full grown Goldador can have a height between 22 to 24 inches (56 to 61 cm).
And if these hybrids did fit in your purse, you’d have a hard time carrying them around. An adult Goldador weighs between 60 to 80 pounds (27 to 36 kg).
They tend to reach their physical adult size by their 18th month. Imagine this 4-month-old Golden Retriever Lab mix growing to two feet tall after two years.
Why get a Golden Retriever Lab mix?
The great thing about crossing two Retrievers with common traits is that their offspring tends to inherit a similar temperament.
The result – the Goldador’s personality – perfectly matches their breeding purpose as a sensitive and tolerant working dog. These dogs also make an excellent choice for first-time dog owners.
An all-in-one package
Similar to its parents, the Goldador is a tolerant dog. This means they have more patience in putting up with humans and react better to strangers and loud noises.
Because of their tolerant attitude, Golden Retriever Lab mixes will be great at tasks requiring interaction with strangers and won’t be aggressive towards passersby. They will also be able to withstand scary and noisy environments while remaining calm.
The Golden Labrador is also reliable and trustworthy, making it a great option for search and rescue teams, anti-narcotic detection squads, and emergency services departments.
As the offspring of two Retrievers, it’s no surprise they are also excellent hunting dogs – on land or water. They may chase birds or ducks at the park since hunting is in their blood.
Their patient, sensitive nature also makes these hybrids great therapy, guide, and service dogs.
Look at this Goldador service dog-in-training:
They love everyone
They have watchdog capabilities because of their loyalty and alertness, but they can’t be your guard dog.
Similar to their parents, Goldadors are friendly and they love people, sometimes even strangers. Don’t be surprised to see them cuddling with a person you’ve never met.
Golden Labs are affectionate dogs, so expect this crossbreed to stick to your side whatever you’re doing. Even if they’re bred to work, they also enjoy just spending time with their owner on the couch.
(They aren’t ‘lap dogs,’ but they will find a way to cuddle – even if it means sitting on you.)
These dogs don’t like being alone. If left on their own, they can suffer from separation anxiety and engage in destructive behavior.
A perfect addition to any family
Because of their playful and cheerful attitude, they get along with older children who are up for a game of fetch or other sporty activities.
Goldadors love water and won’t hesitate to tag along for a swim at the pool, beach, or lake.
They are also great with younger kids. They are gentle and even-tempered, which helps them tolerate energetic, overly curious toddlers and preschool-age children.
However, young kids may accidentally hurt these dogs, and the Golden Lab can easily knock down small children during playtime. This is why it’s best to keep an eye on your dog and kids if they’re playing together.
Good-natured Goldadors will get along with your other pets. These hybrids’ easygoing and calm attitude makes it easier for other animals to interact with them.
However, their Retriever blood could cause their prey drive to kick in around smaller critters. Give them plenty of socialization opportunities while they’re puppies to ensure they won’t harm your pet bird, hamster, or cat.
They adapt to their owner’s lifestyle
Golden Labradors can live in different homes and climates. They can handle the cold weather better if they get the coat of the Labrador Retriever.
They can also acclimatize to warm weather, but they tend to be heat-sensitive. (Better stay indoors on a hot day.)
Your Golden Retriever Lab mix will love living in a home with a yard where he can run around. A spacious backyard with a wireless fence would be ideal, since these dogs are accomplished jumpers.
But despite their large size, Goldadors can happily live in an apartment, as long as they get sufficient physical activity daily.
Wherever you live, though, make sure your Golden Labrador lives indoors with you – don’t leave them outside at night.
Taking care of your Golden Labrador
Golden Labs are low-maintenance, whether they take after the Labrador or the Golden Retriever.
You’ll have an easier time with training because of their intelligence, and you may spend less at the vet since they are a healthy crossbreed.
The Goldador and its grooming requirements
The floppy ears on these hybrids are also prone to infections, so you will need to clean their ears often.
Will you need a vacuum or allergy medicine?
Do Goldadors shed? Yes, you’ll be needing a vacuum.
These crossbreeds are moderate shedders, and their coats lose even more fur during the spring.
All this shedding means that the Goldador is NOT hypoallergenic. You might need to take allergy medicine if your heart is set on this adorable hybrid.
If your Golden Retriever Lab mix inherits the Labrador Retriever’s coat, brush their hair once a week. If their hair is similar to the Golden Retriever’s, comb their silky hair thrice a week to prevent tangling and matting.
Whatever their coat’s texture is, you’ll have to brush them daily during their shedding season, unless you want to spend all day vacuuming your house.
Feeding your Goldador
For their meals, Golden Lab should eat premium-quality dry dog food. Since they are a large-sized breed, you’ll be needing plenty of kibble to keep them satisfied.
Feed your Labrador-Golden Retriever mix 3 to 4 cups of dog food a day and divide this amount into two meals.
Because of their size and energy level, their diet should be high in protein and low in carbohydrates to strengthen their muscles, joints, and immune system.
A high carb intake can result in an overweight Golden Lab with joint problems.
Including vegetables and fruits in their diet boosts their health, but keep in mind that not all fruits and veggies are safe for your dog.
If your Golden Retriever-Lab mix is not eating, take him to the vet for a check up and ask for recommendations on dog food.
Daily exercise needs of the Goldador
It is essential to provide these crossbreeds with regular exercise. With two active parents, the Golden Lab tends to be lively and energetic.
Make sure you meet this dog’s energy levels by spending an hour or two on exercise and active playtime daily. Regular physical activity helps maintain the Golden Labrador’s health and prevents boredom and anxiety.
Bring them to family outings at the lake, beach, or pool. You can also count on them to join you on your jog and hikes; Goldadors certainly have the athleticism for those.
Whether it’s a long walk around the block or a game of fetch in the backyard, the best activities for these dogs get them moving while allowing them to spend time with you.
Keeping these hybrids’ activity level high will also help prevent obesity, which both its parent breeds are prone to.
Here is a video of a Golden Labradors after an hour of playing frisbee:
Are Goldadors easy to train?
The Golden Retriever Lab mix is an intelligent mixed breed, thanks to the fact that both its parents rank in the top 10 smartest canine breeds.
Along with their obedient and well-mannered qualities, these dogs are highly trainable. Even as puppies, they can quickly learn basic commands and non-verbal cues.
Goldador puppies learn fast but make sure to train them in a quiet place to help them concentrate. These dogs are excitable and have a short attention span, which makes them easy to distract.
Aside from house training, teach your pup which objects are safe to play with. This is especially important because most Golden Labs love to chew and pick up objects with their mouth.
Because these hybrids are outgoing and friendly, you will also have an easier time with their socialization. This training is essential because they need to know how to properly interact with strangers for their jobs.
In general, interact with them and provide positive reinforcement during training. Act like the alpha but be loving, too, since they’re sensitive and don’t respond well to harsh training methods.
Retrieving activities and games like fetch will help keep their mind sharp and keep boredom at bay.
Hit two birds with one stone by having the Golden Retriever and Lab mix do simple chores, which satisfy their need for work while giving them the mental stimulation they need.
What health issues can Goldadors have?
The great thing about this hybrid is they have fewer health issues compared to most designer dogs. Thanks to two healthy parents, the Golden Labrador inherits fewer genetic diseases.
Here are illnesses your Golden Lab can be susceptible to:
- Hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia
- Cruciate ligament injury
- Eye conditions like progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and cataracts
- Skin conditions
Similar to the Golden Retriever, this crossbreed may be at a higher risk of cancer. To prevent serious health issues, take your dog to the veterinarian for regular checkups.
With proper care, these dogs can live with you and your family for a long time. Goldadors have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years.
There was even a Golden Lab who lived for 17 years. On April 2010, Liddy, one of the oldest Goldadors, turned 119 in dog years. She was a fantastic retriever of waterfowl and excelled in pheasant hunting. Her owner even describes her as one of the best dogs they ever owned.
What makes Goldadors different from their parents?
These hybrids will have similar traits to the Labrador and Golden Retriever, especially in terms of appearance and temperament.
But have you ever wondered about how different a crossbreed and its purebred parents can be?
Goldador vs. Labrador Retriever
The Labrador Retriever is the perfect purebred gundog. This dog has been around since the 1800s and was developed in England. Aside from hunting, they also love to be around people.
Their patient and outgoing attitude makes them wonderful with children and other pets.
Labrador Retrievers are better suited for the apartment life, but react worse than Goldadors when left alone. Golden Labs more easily adjust to warm weather and have a higher life expectancy than the Lab.
Goldador vs. Golden Retriever
The Golden Retriever is a purebred hunting dog bred in the 19th century in the United Kingdom. Today, the Golden Retriever has become a popular companion for people because of their easygoing and friendly nature.
Golden Retrievers are obedient and want to please their owners, which makes them easy to train. These dogs are also playful and goofy, perfect for children of any age.
Compared to the Goldador, the Golden Retriever is more adaptable to living in an apartment, but it suffers from the same separation anxiety issues.
Goldens may also find it more difficult to adjust to colder weather.
Comparing the Golden Lab to similar designer dogs
These crossbreeds have cousins or other mixed breeds who have either the Labrador or the Golden Retriever as a parent.
If you’re deciding which crossbreed to get, here’s a quick rundown of their differences from the Golden Retriever-Labrador mix.
Goldador vs Labradoodle
Their friendly nature allows them to get along with children and other pets.
The Labradoodle is an intelligent and easy-to-train dog because of its Poodle parent. However, the same Poodle parent may also give the Labradoodle a coat that requires more maintenance.
If you are a first-time dog owner, the Golden Retriever-Lab mix may be better suited for you.
Goldador vs Goldendoodle
Goldendoodles are the offspring of a Golden Retriever and a Poodle. Similar to the Labradoodle, the Goldendoodle is a companion dog.
This Doodle is gentle and patient, perfect for families with children and other pets. This dog is also bright and obedient, making it easy to train.
Similar to the Labradoodle, the Goldendoodle is smaller and will also require more maintenance because of their Poodle hair.
The Goldador may also be more suited to the apartment life and is less sensitive than the Goldendoodle.
Goldador vs Labrador Husky Mix
Some Labrador Huskies may grow taller or weigh more than the Goldador. Huskadors typically have a shorter lifespan, too.
This friendly dog loves to spend time with their family. Because of the Husky’s nature as a pack animal, the Lab-Husky mix will also fit in with your other pets easily.
Huskadors doesn’t bark frequently, but these dogs have loud howls, similar to a wolf. Have some earplugs handy or be prepared to do some extensive training.
These dogs need to have a job around your home so they won’t get bored and anxious.
Goldador or Golden Shepherd
Similar to the Goldador, this affectionate crossbreed loves to be around people. They don’t want to be left alone for a long amount of time.
Golden Shepherds are protective and devoted to their family. Their playful and energetic attitude helps them get along with children and other pets.
Golden Shepherds bark more often and are more sensitive than Golden Labs. These Shepherd crossbreeds also require more maintenance since they are frequent shedders.
How much is a Golden Retriever Lab mix?
These large dogs come with a hefty price tag. Prices are different for each breeder but a Golden Lab usually costs around $1,000 to $4,500.
You may need to add a few hundred bucks if you’re looking for a top-quality puppy with pedigreed parents.
Goldador puppies should have bright and clear eyes and be outgoing – approaching you with ease and playing with other puppies in the litter. They should also have a clean bill of health, so make sure to ask the breeder for health certifications.
If you found Goldador puppies which cost less than $800, ask the breeder about the history and health of the puppy’s parents.
Where can I get a Golden Labrador Retriever?
To make it easier for you, we have a list of reputable and licensed Goldador breeders.
Check out these breeders where you may find the perfect Golden Retriever-Labrador puppy for you.
Breeders from Maryland
Victoria’s Pups breeds AKC Labrador and Golden Retrievers and produces crossbreeds, too. They have a veterinarian who examines every dog once a month. This breeder will answer all your questions about the puppy’s health, diet, care and help with transition plans. They will provide a health guarantee and continuous veterinarian monitoring.
They have a return policy within three days for any health issues or if you’re incapable of taking care of the dog. If you’re interested, they show puppies by appointment.
Cottage Garden Goldadors has bred Goldador puppies since 2006. The parents of their puppies are AKC-registered English Golden Retrievers and American Labrador Retrievers. Their pups cost $2,200 each and you pay additional fees for vaccinations and training programs for your puppy.
Find Breeders in Pennsylvania
Ridley’s Red Retrievers have been breeding the parents of the Goldador for 15 years. If you require a service or therapy companion, this breeder will pair parents to increase the chances of puppies inheriting the specific qualities needed.
This responsible breeder will sell puppies after they turn eight weeks old for $2,650, inclusive of tax.
Discover Breeders From Colorado
Colorado’s Finest Kennel and Ranch breeds Goldadors in Denver near the Rocky Mountains. Priced at $1,100 each, their puppies have purebred parents free from genetic problems, which they will prove with a health guarantee.
Locate Oregon Breeders
Oregon Goldadors has been a family breeder for five years. The purebred parents are AKC-registered English Cream Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers, which they have been breeding for nine years. You can purchase their adorable puppies for $2,000 each.
Rescues and adoption for Goldadors
If you don’t mind getting an older dog, adopt a Golden Labrador instead!
With an older dog, you may have to deal with less training and fewer temperament issues overall.
There are also Facebook pages and groups who have listings of Goldador rescue, rehoming, or adoption:
- Large Breed Puppies/Dogs in PNW (Pacific Northwest)
- Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida (Central Florida or Tampa District)
- Labradors and Friends Dog Rescue (California)
Check nearby shelters, kennels, and rescue centers for a Goldador in need of a loving home.
Is the Goldador the right dog for you?
The Goldador is a sensitive and easygoing dog perfect for different jobs, families, and lifestyles. The breeders were successful since Golden Labs lived up to their purpose!
They are easy to train and an excellent companion for first-time dog owners. These dogs will get along with most children, but, because of their large size, you will need to watch when they interact with smaller kids.
You also need to fit their exercise and grooming requirements into your daily schedule. It’s time to buy a vacuum because these dogs tend to be moderate shedders.
If you are a Goldador parent or to-be owner, we would love to hear about your experience! Share your story with us in the comment section below.