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Flat-Coated Retriever Breed Summary

Intelligent, Energetic, Aquatic and Devoted

These dogs, often referred to as 'Flatties' are large gun dogs that resemble both Golden and Labrador Retrievers. They absolutely LOVE the water, so if you live near a lake or beach, we highly recommend taking advantage of this! Additionally, they are very slow to mature which means they are playful for most of their lives.

They have huge amounts of energy and are very excitable so best suit families who already lead active lifestyles that they can easily slot into.

Fun Fact: One of the breeds' biggest fans was one of the founders of the Kennel Club!

Kennel Club Group Gundog
Lifespan 8 - 10 Years
Height (at the withers) Males 58cm - 61cm, Females 56cm - 58cm
Weight Males 27kg - 36kg, Females 25kg - 32kg
Coat Dense and Fine Coat. Close Lying to the Body
Colour Black, Liver
Eye colour Hazel or Dark Brown
Common health issues Patellar luxation, Hip dysplasia, Elbow dysplasia, Primary Glaucoma, Cardiomyopathy, Cranial Cruciate Ligament Failure, Osteoarthritis, Ophthalmic conditions (Adnexa), Laryngeal Paralysis, Alabama rot, Renal Dysplasia, Cancer, Ear issues, Bloat
Other Names Flatcoat, Flattie, Flatte, Canine Peter Pan

These guys LOVE to be around water, so for ‘hoomans’ that don’t like the sound of mud and water being trodden through their houses, it’s probably not the ideal breed. But for those that don’t mind this, they make a fantastic pet. Flat-Coated Retriever's also mature very slowly, meaning they possess puppy-like traits a lot longer than other breeds. They have a fantastic amount of energy and resilience and need an owner who also has a similar lifestyle. Because of their high intelligence, they are also pretty easy to train and teach new skills and tricks, that you could potentially show off to your friends or at competitions! They love to be around people, so need someone to be with them most of the day. If you do leave these guys by themselves, they will turn into very skilful escape-artists and will try everything in their power to try and get out! But for those that are comfortable with a high-maintenance dog, they will make a great family pet.

It’s thought that Flat-Coated Retriever's may have come to exist about 200 years ago and that dogs such as the Newfoundland could be a part of the ancestry of the breed! It’s believed that Canadian fisherman bought a similar style of dog with them to Britain and bred them with a Collie, in order to create the breed that we know today. In 1864, Mr J Hull established the first breeding programme which is said to be the beginning of the success for this particular group of dogs. As WW1 approached, breeding began to slow, and numbers of many breeds fell dramatically with this breed nearly disappearing altogether! It’s taken a while to get this breed to grow again, although these guys are nowhere near as popular as their cousins, the golden retrievers, they still have a solid fanbase which we think you should join if you haven’t already!