When researching different breeds for your next dog, you might be considering other breeds in addition to Labrador Retrievers.
In your search for the perfect pup, you might come across a mixed breed of dog referred to as the “Goldador.”
What is a Goldador?
A Goldador is a dog created by breeding a Labrador Retriever with a Golden Retriever. The Goldador is a large, athletic, intelligent dog who excels in the water, is a proficient retriever, and is very energetic.
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Goldadors can be wonderful for people with active lifestyles and their gentle temperaments can be a good fit for family members of all ages.
We’re going to go over more about the traits and features of Goldadors to get to know this designer dog breed, as well as discuss the possible health issues you should be aware of if you’re looking at getting one.
Overview of Goldadors: The Lab-Golden Retriever Mix
The Goldador was created by combining the best of the Labrador Retriever with the wonderful qualities of the Golden Retriever, two popular large-breed dogs.
Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers are very similar breeds to begin with, and the Goldador will have a strong resemblance to both breeds.
Labrador Retrievers grow to be approximately 55-80 lbs and 21-24 inches. Golden Retrievers are usually about 55-75 lbs and 20-24 inches when fully grown.
You can expect your Goldador will likely grow to be around 20-24 inches and 55-80 lbs as an adult dog.
Both breeds were originally bred for waterfowl and upland game retrieval, which they both excel at, especially in water conditions. A thick protective coat, webbed feet, and a powerful tail that works like a rudder will likely be traits your Goldador will possess.
Both Labs and Golden Retrievers are also extremely popular: Labradors have been the most popular dog in the United States for 30 years, and Golden Retrievers are the 3rd most popular.
As both parent breeds are extremely active, high-energy, and intelligent, your Goldador will be an outgoing, playful dog that will need plenty of exercise and room to run off a lot of daily energy.
(Living in a smaller space with a large-breed dog? You can still make it work with a big dog in an apartment or condo. Read our guide for how to survive in a small living space with a larger-than-life dog).
Goldadors might also have longer hair than a purebred Labrador, though their coat may be shorter than a purebred Golden Retriever. We’ll cover more about brushing and grooming tips for your Goldador in the grooming section below.
Because there may be variations in breeding, it’s possible your individual Goldador could resemble a Labrador more, or a Golden Retriever in more ways.
Depending on what generation of dog you get from a breeder, and what traits that breeder is focusing on, you might see some significant variation among Goldadors.
Your Goldador might have longer or shorter fur, a fluffier tail, or shorter fur on the face and ears. Your Goldador could look almost entirely like a Lab or a Golden Retriever, or be a perfect blend between the two.
Colors of Goldadors
What color are Goldadors usually? Let’s take a look first at the parent dogs.
There are three main accepted colors of purebred Labrador Retrievers, and one main color of Golden Retrievers.
The Labrador colors are yellow, black, and chocolate, with chocolate being the least common.
For Golden Retrievers, there are many shade variations of the same golden color. You might see Goldens that are very dark, almost copper or red-gold, and you might see some that are white or cream.
Because of these colors, you will most often see Goldadors being a yellow or gold color.
There is a chance that a Labrador-Golden Retriever mix could also inherit the black coat of a black Labrador Retriever parent dog, as this is the dominant color in the Labrador breed, but you’ll most often see Goldadors yellow.
Personality & Temperament of Goldadors
Both Labradors and Golden Retrievers are known for having friendly, playful, easy-going temperaments, and this should also be true of any Goldador puppy you get.
Labradors are known for intelligence, energy, playful personalities, and skills in retrieving, especially in the water. Labs are also usually excellent swimmers and fabulous upland game retrievers. They are a high-energy breed who’s always up to play!
Golden Retrievers are gentle, friendly, playful, and great bird retrievers. Their perpetual sunny dispositions and glossy long fur give them a soft spot for your kids to snuggle and they are generally very adaptable to busy life with families.
Both breeds can be excellent service and helper dogs, and if you’re looking for a service dog, you might find the Goldador to be an excellent choice.
Your Goldador should be a high-energy, active, and athletic family dog who excels in water and is always up for outdoor adventures.
Like Labs and purebred Goldens, Goldadors aren’t usually aggressive or used as guard dogs, due to their very friendly and social nature with people.
They tend to be a bit more mellow than certain other types of Labrador mixes, such as Jackadors, which are an extremely high-energy and active mix between Labs and Jack Russell Terriers.
If you have allergies, you might want to consider a different type of dog, because a Goldador might definitely aggravate your allergies. Check out our article on The Truth About Hypoallergenic Dogs for more information on other breeds of dogs that might be a better fit for your allergies.
Cost of Goldador Puppies
If you’re going through a Goldador-specific breeder, a puppy will probably cost you about $500-$1500, depending on your location and the breeder you select.
You may also find Goldadors, both puppies and older dogs, in rescues and at shelters.
In addition to typically covering the spaying or neutering costs for you, the adoption fees through a rescue or shelter will usually be significantly less expensive than getting a Goldador puppy from a breeder. Plus, you’re saving a dog’s life!
Shedding & Grooming for Goldadors
While Labrador Retrievers are known for being a high-shedding breed, the Golden Retriever can be described as an excessive shedding dog.
If you do get a Labrador-Golden Retriever mix, be aware that you are going to get a gorgeous dog with a luscious, glossy coat, but also might have a significant shedding situation to deal with on a regular basis in your home.
While it’ll be worth it to have your adorable Goldador family member, you’ll still want to be prepared ahead of time to get a handle on the shedding and keep it under control to prevent frustration.
Getting your dog on a regular schedule of bathing and brushing will be critical steps to take in managing the shedding situation in your home.
You’ll want to invest in the right tools, especially an excellent dog brush to remove the undercoat. Our favorite is the Furminator, which we’ve used on both Labs and Golden Retrievers with tremendous success.
Whether you’re getting a Goldador, a purebred Labrador, or another type of dog that sheds, be sure to check out our article on solutions to handle dog shedding for more tips to make things easier at home with your dog.
Goldadors, like Labradors and Golden Retrievers, will not need haircuts or to be shaved; in fact, we don’t recommend you do either because it can damage the protective nature of their natural coat. They won’t need visits to the groomer unless you choose to use one for bathing, brushing, and nail trims (which you can do at home or at the vet’s office).
Possible Health Issues of Goldadors
Before you get your Golden Retriever-Labrador mix, you’ll want to be aware of some of the common health issues that both dog breeds face.
The extent of how healthy your individual dog will be depends on many factors, including nutrition, the health history of the dog’s parents, and environment.
By far one of the most critical influences on your dog’s future health is breeding, and it’s why we suggest you really do thorough and excellent research when choosing to get a puppy from a breeder.
No matter what breed of dog you end up getting, whether it’s a purebred Labrador, or mixed breed such as a Goldador, Labradoodle, or Goldendoodle, the most important thing you can do is select an ethical and reputable dog breeder who has tested for health issues in their dogs before breeding.
Because this step in the process is so important, we have a complete guide to how to choose a dog breeder that goes into detail about where to find good breeders, what to look for, and what questions to ask in the process.
Labrador Retrievers have some frequently occurring health issues that you’ll want to discuss with your breeder and veterinarian, especially if you’re getting a new puppy.
Some conditions that are frequently seen in Labrador Retrievers:
- Hip/Elbow/Shoulder Dysplasia
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy
- Thyroid Issues
- Exercise-Induced Collapse
- Foreign-body ingestion
Golden Retrievers struggle with many of the same issues as Labradors. They also have some significant medical issues that seem to affect them more than other breeds of dogs.
According to the Golden Retriever Society, here are some medical issues often seen in Golden Retrievers:
- Joint Issues (Dysplasia)
- Patella Dislocation
- Eye Disorders
- Blood Disorders Including Von Willebrand Disease
- Aortic Stenosis
- Thyroid Disease
As you can see from the above information, there are many of the same health issues seen in both Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers.
If you’re getting a Goldador mix, you’ll need to be very careful that your puppy breeder (if you’re getting your dog through one) has tested for as many of these potential health issues in the parents as possible.
Make sure you involve your veterinarian if you have any medical questions about the health of your puppy or the information the breeder is providing you.
Summary: Labrador-Golden Retriever Mix
The Goldador is a fantastic mix of the best of Labrador and Golden Retriever traits: a dog with a playful, friendly temperament, excellent water skills, and intelligence. The Goldador might be the perfect fit for your next dog!
Be sure to do your research on finding a great breeder if you’re getting a puppy, and don’t forget to look at shelters and rescues too. Though there are some health issues that both Labradors and Golden Retrievers are prone to, you can help improve your chances of getting a healthy dog by proper research and asking the right health questions in the beginning.