AVERAGE LIFE SPAN: 12-14 years
AVERAGE SIZE OF ADULT: Large
GROOMING NEEDS: Medium
EXERCISE NEEDS: High
The flat coated retriever is a medium to large sized dog who is often mistaken for a Labrador. Similar in size and shape to the Lab, unlike a Labrador his coat is wavy and feathered around the tail and edges, he has a longer neck, bigger ears and a longer muzzle and a slightly more excitable character.He is a slow maturing dog and can maintain his puppy like nature for quite a few years.
The flat coat is a sporting dog with plenty of energy and will need at least an hours walk or exercise a day. The flat coat has an exuberant nature and loves human companionship. He is not a dog to leave shut-up at home as he will quickly learn to escape if he can. Bred to work, the flat coat has plenty of energy and enthusiasm for life. He is most often seen on the shooting field where he is an excellent water dog and a natural swimmer. He has a deep bark making him a useful guard dog, however he is likely to greet strangers with a wagging tail.
The flat coat is at his best in the country and was once known as the gamekeeper’s dog when he was widely used on large country estates back in the 1800s. The founder of the UK Kennel Club, Sewallis Evelyn Shirley, helped stabilise the breed from 1873 to 1899. The flat coat is always solid black in colour and stands up to 63cm at the shoulder and can weigh up to 32kg. Temperament wise he is extremely reliable and loves everyone, even strangers. Hip dysplasia, seizures and diabetes can be a problem but the flat coat is a relatively healthy breed which has a life span of up to 10 years.
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