Puppy or Adult?
Puppies are cute, cuddly and full of antics. Hopefully, that helps carry you both through the period when puppies dig holes in the yard, surf kitchen counters, jump up on people, chew your favorite possessions, and other typical puppy behavior. Of course keeping a constant eye on the puppy and gently guiding him to an alternate activity helps a lot. But there are other aspects, such as needing to take the puppy outdoors for potty breaks, initially every 15 minutes early morning until bedtime, to establish the desired place.
Sometimes it’s not a question of being unable to resist a cute puppy. Many people feel that they absolutely need to raise their Golden from puppyhood as otherwise it won’t be bonded to them. Being proactive owners who socialize their puppy to strangers and other dogs and teach their puppy the right way before they learn the wrong way on their own is ideal. It indeed can build a wonderful bond and develop a well socialized and well behaved adult. But make no mistake; that takes time and dedication, and a united front by all family members for the consistency of what is expected and how to communicate that to the puppy. It doesn’t just magically happen.
So, if you don’t have the time and/or energy for all that is needed to properly raise and train a puppy, does that mean that you are destined for life without a Golden Retriever? Not necessarily. There are some great options.
Older Puppy or Adult from a Breeder
Older Puppy – Sometimes breeders raise up a couple of puppies from a litter to see which one meets the needs of their breeding program. This can mean that at some point (6 months of age? 8 months? 12 months?) the breeder needs to decide which one to keep for the future and which one to place in just the right home. Both puppies are raised with the same care, with some training under their belt, and they’re ready, willing, and able to be the apple of a new family’s eye.
Adult – Another situation occurs when a breeder is contacted by a previous puppy buyer when something unforeseen happens and the buyer is unable to keep his Golden. Most breeders’ sales contracts stipulate that the puppy buyers are to contact the breeder when such a situation occurs so that they can assist in rehoming, or if they are able, even take back the dog when a new home isn’t available. Getting acquainted with several reputable breeders in your area can give you the ability to assess them and their dogs, and they can assess you as the right home for an adult or older puppy from their breeding program.