Ten Reasons Why A Flat-Coated Retriever May Not Be The Breed For You

  1. They are a medium to large dog:  Males 23-24 ½ inches and Females 22-23 ½ inches.  Males may weigh 60-75 pounds and Females 50-65 pounds.
  2. Flat-Coats are an athletic dog and as such require regular exercise such as running and swimming. Not given the proper outlet for activity and the Flattie will find ways to entertain himself by chewing or digging which may be destructive in your way of thinking!
  3. Because of their size and energy levels, Flat-Coated Retrievers are healthy eaters. You may be feeding 2-3 cups or more daily.
  4. These dogs are retrievers and like to carry things around in their mouth including birds, balls, sticks, pillows, socks, children’s toys, underwear – anything that will fit and even some things that don’t!
  5. Flat-Coated Retrievers LOVE people and need to be included as part of the family. They do not like being left alone without companionship for long periods of time.
  6. FCRs shed and although their coats are fairly low maintenance, they do require regular brushing and occasional trimming.
  7. The biggest health concern in the breed is cancer and unfortunately there is no test to learn if a dog is at risk. Therefore there is no way to guarantee your dog won’t be effected. The Flat-Coated Retriever Society of America funds various cancer research projects to learn more about this serious problem.  The average life span is 8-10 years.
  8. FCRs do require training to instill good manners. They are very biddable but can be soft dogs so training methods must be fair, positive, and consistent.  They are best trained in short intervals, as they may bore with repetition.
  9. The FCR is usually an adequate alarm dog to give warning but because of his optimistic and good-natured character is basically inclined to be friendly to everyone. If you’re looking for a protective guard dog you might want to keep searching.
  10. As the “Peter Pan” of the dog world, Flatties are slow to mature mentally and physically. They require patience throughout their life since they may act like puppies well into adulthood.