Red Golden Retrievers: Differences, Puppy Price & More!

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Golden Retrievers are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world, known for their friendly personalities and gentle nature.

But did you know this breed has a variation with a stunning red coat?

Red Golden Retrievers have gained popularity in recent years, and many people have questions about them and want to know what sets them apart from standard Golden Retrievers.

In this article, we’ll explore the history of Red Golden Retrievers, examine the genetic differences behind their unique coloring, and delve into other important topics such as temperament, health concerns, grooming needs, puppy cost, and adoption options.

So if you’re considering adding a Red Golden Retriever to your family or simply curious about these beautiful dogs, read on to learn more!

Red Golden Retriever
Caption : Red Golden Retriever

Red Golden Retriever History

As purebred Golden Retrievers, their history can be traced back to the 1800s in England and Scotland, where a number of breeds were crossed to create these intelligent and friendly dogs.

The breeding of the Golden Retriever was not a one-time event but a carefully planned process that took place over several decades.

During the mid-19th Century, Sir Dudley Marjoribanks, also known as Lord Tweedmouth, wanted a perfect hunting dog that could retrieve game from both land and water, so he started crossing his yellow retriever and the now-extinct Tweed Water Spaniel.

Over time, other breeds, such as Irish Setters and Bloodhounds, were added to the mix to create the perfect hunting dog. And over the course of 50 years, the perfectly engineered Golden Retriever was born, which is the forefather of the modern Golden Retrievers we know today.

The first Golden Retriever was shown in 1908, and it was around the same time that they were brought to America and were later recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1925.

The Red Golden Retriever was not developed until much later, however. When and how exactly the Red Golden Retriever was developed is unknown, but it is believed that their gorgeous, stunning mahogany coats resulted from cross-breeding with Irish Setters.

Differences Between Golden Retrievers & Red Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers and Red Golden Retrievers are two different variations of the same breed.

The most obvious difference between them is their coat color. While Golden Retrievers have a light golden or cream-colored coat, Red Golden Retrievers have a darker, reddish-golden coat.

Other than that, Red Golden Retrievers tend to be slightly smaller and lighter, normally stand around 20-23 inches tall, and weigh between 55-75 pounds.

They have a more streamlined body and higher energy levels. They are also more athletic than other Goldens, as they typically are bred from sporting or hunting lines instead of companion or show lines. This makes them great for activities like running, biking, and hiking.

Cracking the Code: Understanding the Genetics Behind Red Golden Retrievers

Red Golden Retrievers are a stunning variation of the Golden Retriever breed, known for their beautiful mahogany coat color. But what makes them different genetically?

To understand this, we need to look at the genetics behind coat color in dogs.

According to Retrievers Online, dogs have 50,000 to 100,000 genes, of which 10 genes determine coat color. And of those 10 genes, some dictate a dog’s primary coat color, while others are responsible for the distribution of the color, for instance, the intensity of the color, spots, stripes, etc.

For Golden Retrievers, the genes at B, E, and C regions on the chromosome are the most critical factors determining their coat color. B and E will determine the base coat color, whereas the genes at the C region affect the intensity and hue of the coat.

In the case of Red Golden Retrievers, their stunning red coat color depends on the gene pairing of the following:

  • C + C -> Dark/ Bronze/ Red
  • C + cch -> Medium Shades
  • cch + cch -> Nearly White

Color Controversy

For many years, there has been a debate regarding the origins of the darker shade of Golden Retrievers and the possible link to Irish Setters, as some believe Irish Setters were introduced into the breed at some point, resulting in a darkening of their coat, and therefore, consider it to be a mutation.

However, many people also argue that, unlike the “designer dogs” produced by cross-breeding two purebreds like a Retriever-Setter mix, Red Golden Retrievers are simply a variation of the traditional shade. In fact, most breeders recognize the darker shade Golden Retrievers as being purebred.

Regardless of the controversy, one thing we can all agree on is just how stunning the Red Golden Retriever looks. With their unique coloring, they certainly stand out in a crowd, and more importantly, they are absolutely beautiful dogs and are an absolute delight to own.

Red Golden Retriever
Caption : Red Golden Retriever

Red Golden Retrievers for Showing?

Thanks to its beautiful mahogany coat, the Red Golden Retriever is, without a doubt, a crowd-pleaser.

But do they have what it takes to go all the way? Can they compete with the traditional Golden Retrievers in showing circles?

Unfortunately, if you are considering a Red Golden Retriever for showing purposes, you’re out of luck. The reason is that the AKC breed standard only recognizes the traditional Golden Retriever with its signature golden coloring, meaning Red Golden Retrievers will not be eligible for showing.

That said, Red Golden Retrievers still make excellent pets and family companions.

If you’re looking for a loyal and loving companion with eye-catching coat color and don’t intend to show your dog, the Red Golden Retriever is definitely a great option.


Besides having more energy and being more athletic than the standard Golden Retriever, Red Golden Retrievers have similar temperaments and characteristics.

They are highly intelligent, affectionate, gentle, and loyal dogs who thrive on human contact and attention. They are also known for their willingness to please their owners and are highly social dogs who love to be around people. That also means they aren’t good at guard duty, as they will welcome strangers with open arms and wagging tails!

Red Golden Retrievers love to retrieve objects, whether a ball or stick. I mean, what else would you expect from a Retriever?

They need at least an hour of intense exercise each day and plenty of mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy and prevent them from becoming bored or destructive.

Red Golden Retrievers are also great with kids and get along great with other pets in the household, making them an ideal furry companion for any family.

Health Issues

Red Golden Retrievers have an average lifespan of 10 to 12 years. They are generally healthy dogs, but like all breeds, they are susceptible to certain health issues.

It’s important to be aware of these potential health issues so that you can keep an eye out for any signs and symptoms and take steps to prevent them or seek treatment if necessary.

One of the most common health problems that Red Golden Retrievers experience is joint conditions such as hip and elbow dysplasia. These conditions can cause pain and discomfort for the dog and may require medical intervention.

In addition to joint issues, Red Golden Retrievers are also prone to skin problems, allergies, and ear infections. These conditions can be uncomfortable for the dog and may require medication or other treatments to alleviate symptoms.

Eye diseases are another common health issue for Red Golden Retrievers. Cataracts, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), and Golden Retriever Pigmentary Uveitis (GRPU) are among the most common eye diseases affecting this breed. These conditions can lead to vision loss or blindness if left untreated.

Regular visits to the vet and recommended health screenings are essential for Red Golden Retrievers. Early detection is key to managing any health problems that may arise.

Noting some of the conditions are hereditary, it is crucial to choose a reputable breeder when looking for a Red Golden Retriever puppy. Reputable breeders will health test their dogs before breeding to ensure the pups are as healthy as possible and free of genetic disorders.

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Grooming-wise, Red Golden Retrievers require regular brushing to prevent matting and tangling and to keep their beautiful, flowing coats healthy and shiny.

Brushing your Red Golden’s coat at least three times a week with a slicker brush will help keep their shedding under control and reduce the amount of fur on your couch.

It’s crucial to never shave them, not even in the summer. Their coat provides insulation from hot and cold weather, so shaving them can cause discomfort. Instead, opt for trimming their hair around their ears, paws, and tail to keep them looking neat.

In addition to brushing and trimming their coat, you should regularly clean your Golden Retriever’s ears with an ear-cleaning solution recommended by veterinarians to prevent infections.

You should also trim their nails every 2-3 weeks using either a nail grinder or clippers to prevent them from becoming too long and causing discomfort.

Brushing your Red Golden Retriever’s teeth regularly with toothpaste specifically designed for dogs is also essential. This will help prevent bad breath, tartar and plaque buildup, and dental disease.

Overall, grooming your Red Golden Retriever is essential to keeping them healthy and happy. With regular brushing, trimming, ear cleaning, and nail trimming, you can help maintain their beautiful coat while preventing any potential health issues.

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Puppy Cost

Red Golden Retrievers are a beautiful and unique breed that many people are interested in owning. However, one of the main concerns for potential owners is the cost of purchasing a Red Golden Retriever puppy.

The average cost of a Golden Retriever puppy from a reputable breeder ranges from $1,000 to $5,000, depending on the breeder’s reputation and location. However, due to the relative rarity of Red Golden Retrievers, you can expect to pay more for this particular color variation.

Reputable breeders typically charge more for their pups due to vet bills, stud fees, prenatal care, and other costs involved in breeding and raising the puppies. You’re basically paying for a healthy pup that has been well taken care of from birth.

It’s important to note that while it may be tempting to purchase a cheaper puppy from an unknown source or unscrupulous breeder, this could end up costing you more in the long run.

The reason is that cheap puppies can often come from unethical breeders or puppy mills who don’t properly care for their dogs, resulting in genetically flawed and unhealthy pups with long-term health problems that could cost you thousands of dollars in vet bills down the line.

So if you’re looking for a Red Golden Retriever puppy, it’s best to stick with a reputable breeder who has been properly vetted and can guarantee the health of their puppies. This will give you peace of mind knowing that your puppy has been well taken care of and is as healthy as possible.

Adopting A Red Retriever

If buying a puppy isn’t an option for you, adoption is another way to bring a Red Golden Retriever into your home.

There are several rescue organizations across the country that specialize in rescuing and rehoming Golden Retrievers of all colors, including red Goldens!

Rescue organizations such as Golden Retriever Rescue of North Texas (GRRNT), Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue, Southern California Golden Retriever Rescue, and Golden Retriever Rescue and Adoption of Needy Dogs (GRRAND) are just a few of the many dedicated organizations that are devoted to finding loving homes for these wonderful dogs.

Adopting a Golden Retriever from a rescue or shelter usually costs around $200 to $500, and much of that money goes towards covering the costs of medical care, vaccinations, and other essentials. And again, since Red Golden Retrievers are a rare color, you can expect to pay more for them than regular Golden Retrievers.

Also, because of their rarity, there may not be any Red Retrievers available for adoption in your immediate area. In this case, consider expanding your search radius or setting up an alert on websites like Petfinder to be notified when a Red Retriever becomes available.

Adopting an adult Red Golden Retriever can be just as rewarding as buying a puppy, and you’ll also save money. And not only will you be giving them a second chance at life, but you’ll also get to skip out on the pup-stage messes that come with raising a young dog!

Regardless of whether you adopt or purchase your Red Retriever, you’ll surely end up with a loving companion that will bring years of joy into your home!

Final Thoughts

Red Golden Retrievers are a beautiful and unique variation of the standard Golden Retriever breed. Their striking red coat sets them apart from other dogs and makes them highly sought after by potential owners.

Whether you choose to adopt or purchase a Red Golden Retriever puppy, it’s crucial to remember that pet ownership comes with responsibilities. Proper nutrition, exercise, veterinary care, training, and socialization are all essential components of providing a happy and healthy life for your furry friend.

Overall, Red Golden Retrievers are an incredible breed that makes wonderful family pets. By providing them with the love and care they deserve, you’ll have a loyal companion by your side for years to come.