The Flat Coated Retriever

The Flat Coated Retriever dates back to the mid to late 1800’s. They were very popular among the British gamekeepers because of their strong working ability. Even today there are many dedicated breeders that refuse to allow the breed to split into separate show and field lines.

The Flat Coated Retriever is an elegant yet strong dog with many redeeming qualities. They are affectionate and good natured. They thrive on family interaction and will remain happy go lucky throughout their life. The Flat Coat is a bright and active dog that needs plenty of exercise. When kenneled for long periods of time they may become frustrated or excitable. When training the Flat Coated Retriever will require a firm will but light hand for they are quick to test the limits of fun and training.

The Flat Coated Retriever is generally a healthy breed. They are susceptible to many of the same diseases and health issues one sees in other breeds. As with many other breeds, cancer has been a challenge to the Flat Coated Retriever. The Flat Coated Retriever Society of America has been a generous contributor to various cancer research studies in the hope of gaining a better understanding of the factors that may contribute to cancer. There are many dedicated breeders, including myself, that place the health, longevity, and the soundness of their breeding lines in the forefront when considering their next litter. At the minimum, all breeding dogs and bitches should be cleared through OFA for hip, elbow and patellar luxation. As an alternative, some breeders may elect to have the PennHip evaluation performed on their dogs/bitches hips. Eyes should be cleared through CERF every two years. A onetime gonioscopy should be performed on their dog’s/bitch’s eyes and rated unaffected.

All in all, the Flat Coated Retriever is a very special dog. The breed can be addictive, and when once you are owned by a Flat Coated Retriever it is very difficult to give up the “Peter Pan” of the dog world. There are many of us who are living proof, you start with one and soon you have multiples. We love every minute of their existence!