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Mini Golden Retriever: A Purebred Or A Crossbreed?

Mini Golden Retriever: A Purebred Or A Crossbreed?

When you hear ‘Golden Retriever’, you can automatically connect it to amazing, loving, and beautiful family dogs. They are among the most popular dog breeds we all love and respect. But, what if we told you that they can come in a smaller package?

That is right. You heard it correctly! There is such a thing as a mini Golden Retriever. A lot of people didn’t even know that this breed exists.

Even though these dogs look like a smaller version of a Golden Retriever, they aren’t purebred dogs.

These cuties have a couple of other breeds in the mix. This might be confusing since they don’t have a funny or fancy name like other mixed breeds, and they look just like a Golden Retriever, but smaller.

There might be some other confusing things connected with this breed as well, but we tried to explain it all in the easiest way possible. If you are interested in the idea of a smaller-sized Golden, then buckle up and let’s start the ride.

Mini Golden Retriever: Let’s Meet The Parent Breeds

mini golden retriever lying in the grass

Photo from: @_thekittychronicles_

When you read the name ‘miniature Golden Retriever’, you probably think to yourself that that is a purebred Goldie, but just in a smaller version. There is a mini Husky, and they are truly purebred Huskies – just in a smaller size.

But, this is not the case with these beauties. To get a Mini Goldie, you have to mix a purebred Golden Retriever with some of the following breeds:

– Miniature Poodle

– Cocker Spaniel

– Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

– Goldendoodle / Mini Goldendoodle

The mix of a Golden Retriever and a Goldendoodle in order to achieve a miniature Golden is a bit rarer. It is hard to achieve the genetic lottery. The main thing about this mix is that there is a bigger percentage of Golden than other breeds.

There should be 50% or 75% of Golden Retrievers, and the rest are other breeds. Why is this important? Well, if you mix a Poodle and a Golden Retriever, the most popular result would be a Goldendoodle.

You will get a Goldendoodle if you have a bigger percentage of Poodle, so you need to achieve the opposite in order to get a mini Golden Retriever.

This breed was bred by a woman named Kathy Burgess not that long ago. We can say that we are thankful for being presented with such an incredible mixed breed.

Before we start with a small guide to this mixed breed, the best thing is to meet the parents first. When you know the characteristics of the parent breeds, you will get a general idea of this mixed breed.

Golden Retriever

golden retriever dog walking outdoor

These dogs are one of the most popular family dogs in the world, and we understand why. Who can resist that cute face and silly behavior? These beauties have a long and shiny coat that make them super elegant while they are walking.

These dogs are popular for their golden color, but there are other Golden Retriever colors. Their coat needs daily brushing for the prevention of matting because they shed quite a lot.

Because of their shedding, they aren’t hypoallergenic, which will cause some problems for people who have dog allergies.

The Golden Retriever breed is known for its happy personality. The unusual thing about them is that they stay in that playful puppy stage until they are three or four years old.

These dogs are well-behaved, they love their family, and they would do anything for them.

They are amazing with kids and other animals. They are even super friendly with strangers, which doesn’t make them good guard dogs. Because of all these traits, you can see that this breed is not aggressive.

They are active dogs, and they need a lot of exercise. They were originally bred to hunt and retrieve ducks, and we can say that this has stayed in their DNA to this day.

They need at least an hour of daily exercise, and the best type is a more intense type of exercise, which would include a lot of running or even swimming.

They also need to be mentally stimulated. These dogs are intelligent and willing to learn a lot of tricks and commands.

People tend to teach them to wake them up at a certain time or to bring them stuff they need, and these dogs are more than happy to do all of those things.

All in all, you can say that this dog is man’s best friend.

RELATED: How Often Should You Bathe A Golden Retriever: All You Need To Know

Cocker Spaniel

cocker spaniel lying on the grass

The Cocker Spaniel has the darling status within the dog world, which is really fitting considering their temperament.

They are members of the American Kennel Club (AKC) Sporting Group, but an interesting fact is that they are the smallest members of this group.

These dogs are known for their luscious, long and wavy coat and long ears that are decorated with curls. When they are running and playing, they look super elegant because of their curly ears and beautiful coat.

The grooming of these dogs can be a bit complicated because they can easily get matts, so it is very important to brush them daily or at least three times a week.

If they are playing in nature, some things can easily get stuck on them. Cocker Spaniels do shed, so brushing is also good to control the shedding.

What is also very important for this breed is to clean and check their ears regularly. Something can easily get stuck in there, but there can also be some natural black gunk that needs to be removed or else an infection can occur.

These dogs are extremely friendly and loyal, and nothing makes them happier than making their owner happy. They love to be on the move, and because of that, they should have an hour of exercise a day.

But, there is their other side where they just love to cuddle and be little couch potatoes. They make amazing dogs for competitions like agility, show ring, and obedience.

The other thing is that they make perfect therapy dogs because of their gentle nature.

These pooches can adapt in an apartment as well as in a house with a yard. They don’t care where they are as long their owner is around them.

The important thing we want to share is that this breed can have some serious health issues and temperament issues if they are not bred properly. This is why you need to find a reputable breeder.

You have the English Cocker Spaniel and the American Cocker Spaniel, but in the case of getting a Miniature Golden Retriever, the American Cocker Spaniel is used.

RELATED: Cocker Spaniel Cost – Are Cocker Spaniels Expensive


poodle lying on the grass in the park

Poodles are dogs that are connected with luxury. These sweet dogs are amazing family pets, but unfortunately, because of their popularity amongst celebrities, a lot of people tend to get them just because of their looks and status.

These dogs are known for their beautiful curly coat. If they are competing in show rings, they tend to have these haircuts that you either love or hate, and usually, they are brushed out.

A Poodle with a natural hairdo is more appealing to people.

Poodles come in different colors, and there is a choice for everybody. But, besides picking a color, you can also pick the size of the dog. They come in three sizes:

– Standard Poodle

– Miniature Poodle

– Toy Poodle

This is amazing for a lot of people because they might fall in love with the temper of the breed, but the standard Poodle is too big for them. Or, people who love bigger dogs can choose the bigger Poodle rather than the smaller ones.

These dogs are medium-energy dogs, and they need some exercise, but nothing too intense.

The small dogs are often carried around in bags, but that is not the best option because even though they are small, they need some exercise as well.

The Poodle is a low-shedding breed, which makes them perfect for people who suffer from allergies to dogs, which technically makes them hypoallergenic. These dogs are excellent at performing in any sport or competition.

They are straight ‘A’ students because they learn everything super fast, and you don’t even need to waste your time and nerve teaching them new tricks.

They love to be around their family, and they don’t like to be left alone for a long time because they can become anxious and depressed.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

cavalier king charles spaniel running on the grass

These dogs have a royal family member in their name, so you can say that they are everything but ordinary. These dogs have that recognizable face and ears, and we find them to be just adorable.

They come in different colors, and we can pick which ones we like the best. The amazing thing about these dogs is that they are always wagging their tail.

They love everybody and everything, and they are in a constant happy mode. Their big puppy eyes just invite you to pet them, which they have no problem with. They love their daily cuddles and receiving affection.

But, on the other hand, they also love to be active. They love to be in nature where their hunting mode kicks in. Catching and retrieving birds is something they like the most.

But, if you are not on the hunting scene, they will love whatever activity you provide them with.

They love their owner, and you can expect them to follow you everywhere, even to the bathroom. You will never feel alone with this pooch. These dogs are better for apartments because big houses with yards make them lonely.

They love to learn new things, and they are easy to train. Using positive reinforcement and some treats will make the teaching process much easier.

Since they have a gentle nature, you shouldn’t raise your voice at them since it will probably make them very anxious.

RELATED: Teacup Cavalier King Charles Spaniel: The Ultimate Guide


a goldendoodle running in a park

The Goldendoodle is one of the members of the Doodle family. This means that these dogs are mixes of a Poodle and other dogs. The Goldendoodle is a mix of a Poodle and a Golden Retriever. They are the perfect combination of the two breeds.

They come in different colors, and their coat is just a cuddle magnet. There is a lot that can be said about these dogs. The main thing is that they are perfect family dogs since they get along with grown-ups, kids, and other animals.

They love to be active, but also love to lounge around. This designer dog is one of the most popular ones, and the demand for them is super high. If you want to get one of these dogs, make sure that you find a reputable breeder.

RELATED: Best Brush For Goldendoodle: Top 12 Tools To Make That Doodle Coat Golden

The Mini Golden Retriever: Appearance

mini golden retriever dog sitting on the couch

Photo from: @socrates_the_golden_scholar

There are a lot of factors that are important, and that can be factors in the genetic lottery of their appearance. The main thing that affects their appearance is the parent breeds.

The Golden Retriever will always be in the mix, but the other parent breed can determine some attributes.

But, the most important thing is that these dogs still look like Golden Retrievers. Even if the dog is mixed with a Poodle or a Cocker Spaniel, they should look very similar. This is the point we made where there needs to be at least 50% to 75% of a Goldie’s genetics.

Some attributes can differ, but we will describe the main characteristics.

General Appearance

The main questions that people ask are, “How big do mini Golden Retrievers grow?” and “Do miniature Golden Retrievers stay small?” We are here to give you the answers. As the name says, itself, they truly are petite Golden Retrievers.

This might be odd to many people since they are a mixed breed, but they are generally small Golden Retrievers. They grow to be 12 to 15 inches tall, and weigh between 25 and 50 lbs.

There is a rule that says that the mini Goldies need to be 25% smaller than the standard Golden Retriever.

The smaller size is perfect for some people because they love the breed, but maybe live in a smaller apartment or generally want a smaller dog.

Mini Golden Retriever puppies will look just the same as Golden puppies, but they won’t grow as rapidly as a purebred Golden.

When they grow up, they will have a head just like the Golden Retriever – only a bit smaller. They will have a longer snout, and ears that are dropped, medium-long, and covered with long hair. The snout is longer, and the head is generally strong.

The slight difference in the snout can happen if a Golden is mixed with a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. It will be a bit shorter and resemble the Cavalier’s snout, but not perfectly. They will probably have big and expressive eyes.

On some occasions, they can look more like the Poodle parent, which means they will look a lot like a Goldendoodle. Other times, they can resemble the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, but in most cases, they will resemble their Golden Retriever parent.


These dogs have a double coat. This means that they will shed, but the interesting thing is that they shed less than all the other parent breeds. This is good for dog owners who have some allergies to dogs.

This double coat is helpful for dogs because it protects them from rain, cold, warmth, and any other possible weather condition.

Their coat is most similar to the Golden Retriever’s coat. Beautiful, long, and shiny are some of the words you can use to describe it.

They usually come in colors that Goldies come in, but they tend to be red more often than Golden Retrievers. This is because they are mixed with dogs that have more of that red pigment.

Miniature Golden Retriever puppies might be born one color, but as they grow older, they can get either a bit darker or a bit lighter. But, all in all, they will be some shade of golden.

The Mini Golden Retriever: Temperament And Personality

mini golden retriever looking aside while sitting in the grass

Photo from: @_thekittychronicles_

These cuties are mixed with dogs that have some similar personalities. There are some differences between these dogs, but generally, they are all dogs that have amazing temperaments.

This means that your mini Goldie will be a package of all the good things.

Like every designer breed, you can not be sure how your new puppy will behave or how it will end up as an adult, but there are some traits that are more common than others.

We made a list of some personality traits that are characteristic of these dogs.


When you look at all of the parent breeds, you can say that these dogs are known to be friendly. Poodles have their careful side, but in the end, they are friendly as well. You can for sure expect that your Mini Golden Retriever will have this characteristic.

These dogs get along with everyone. They love to be around people, and they also love meeting new people. When you think of a Golden Retriever, one of the first things that pops in your mind is its big smile.

This mixed breed will have that big smile as well.

It is almost like an invitation for you to approach them and give them a lot of cuddles. They are kid magnets as well. Kids feel comfortable in their presence, and these dogs don’t mind it.

They are also amazing with other animals. Early socialization is needed, but they naturally get along with every animal. Just make sure that you supervise when they play with a small animal.

Because of their playfulness, they might accidentally be a bit rough.


These dogs love to learn new things, and they are quite good at it. You can always connect the intelligent and loving side of them, and they will learn anything you want to teach them.

They need to be mentally stimulated or else they might showcase some weird behavior.

The best way of teaching them things is by using positive reinforcement and treats. But, don’t fall for their puppy eyes and give them a lot of treats because they will for sure try to get as many as possible.

They love to do small tasks throughout the day, so find some interesting things that you do daily and try to incorporate them.

They will sense that they are being helpful, and this is a way to spend even more time with them.


They are medium-energy dogs, but they have some moments when they go “crazy”.

They need at least an hour to let all their energy out, so they can lounge for the rest of the day. Usually, medium-energy dogs tend to be active throughout the whole day, but nothing intense.

These dogs will have a couple of moments where they will need to play, and when those moments come, you should make sure that they get their time to release their energy.

If you don’t, they might get nervous, and they will be persistent in getting their way.

Playing with other dogs freely in the dog park is the best form of exercise for these dogs. After this playdate, you will for sure have a tired doggy, so take that time to have a cuddle session.


This is a good thing when it comes to alerting you if there is a stranger on your property. They will for sure bark and make you aware that they see something or that they sense something. This is a good thing if you want a watchdog.

But, here is the tricky part. They will probably make friends with the intruder. They are good for alerting, but not that good at protecting.

If they sense big danger, they will stick by your side, but these dogs don’t have a “mean bone” in them, so they might not know how to protect you.

They can be barkers generally, and this is the thing you need to teach them not to do when they are young. Some people don’t mind, but if you let them, they will alert you about every small thing, and that can be exhausting sometimes.

The Mini Golden Retriever: Training

mini golden retriever standing beside ball in the park

Photo from: @socrates_the_golden_scholar

As we already stated, these dogs are very smart and love to learn new things. But, you need to start with the training early. They aren’t stubborn, so you won’t have a problem with that, but the inner child in them might be.

They are child-like even when they grow up, so if you don’t get them used to listening to basic commands when they are young, they probably won’t do that when they are older.

But, don’t worry – even when they are puppies, they are cooperative, and you will have so much fun training them. You just need to stay persistent, and don’t feel discouraged if some commands might take longer time for them to learn.

Some of the things you need to focus on, and that your dog needs to get a hold of are:

– Socialization

– Discipline

– Obedience

– Agility

We made a small list of things that you should teach your dog while it is still a puppy. Some are easier – some are more difficult, and this depends from dog to dog.

Some might get a hold of the potty training immediately while others might struggle with it a bit.

Take your time with it, and stay calm. It is important that you make learning time a positive experience and not something traumatic. If you see that your dog is not cooperating on a certain day, leave it for tomorrow.

Here are some of the things you should start teaching your dog as soon as it arrives at your home because it can seriously improve the quality of its life.

Small Commands

Some of these commands might not be that important for you and your dog, but they are for sure good for your puppy to get used to. Some of these commands are ‘sit’, ‘stay’, ‘paw’, ‘bark’, ‘roll over’, ‘drop’, etc.

Sit, come, stay, and drop are important, and you will need them frequently, especially stay and come. When they learn these two commands, both your and your dog’s life will be easier.

This will be used daily, and if your dog gets a hold of it, you will be able to take it everywhere with you, and also be sure that it will come whenever you call it and not roam away.

Drop is important if your dog puts something in its mouth that can be dangerous. You won’t need to chase it around and force it to drop it.

Roll over, and give paw are just some commands that will get your dog used to learning things. And, it is also cool to showcase that your dog knows some of these things.

Potty Training

This is the first and main thing that you will need to teach your dog. It will probably be one of the most demanding things as well. If you don’t want your dog to pee and poop all over your house, you will need to teach it this.

This might be a bit more difficult for people who live in an apartment rather than a house, but it is for sure not impossible. Dogs generally like their space, and they won’t go to the bathroom where they are living.

It is a natural instinct that will come in time, but you can’t rely on that. You need to teach them that if they have a need, they need to go outside and do what is needed.

If you live in an apartment, you can always try to make a place in a corner where they can go to the bathroom at first. Why is that? Puppies have a small bladder, and will need to pee constantly.

In the beginning stages, you can use this method, and then gradually shift to telling them to go outside.

You will probably need to take some time off, so you can fully dedicate your time to teaching your dog this. Some dogs might need longer time to figure it all out, but we promise… not that long.

It will for sure get frustrating at some point, but it will be all worth it.


mini golden retriever dog and a cat sitting together on the lawn

Photo from: @mittensandrosie

Just like with every dog, these dogs also need early socialization. This is the fun part of the training session, but it can also be a bit nerve-wracking. It is important to expose your dog to many situations, sounds, other animals, kids, and people in general.

This is very important, and it can determine the quality of their life. If your dog is not used to other animals, you may have a problem in the future. They might be afraid or even aggressive towards them.

This means that they won’t be able to play, which will be difficult for the both of you. You need to expose them to many sounds and environments.

Some dogs might naturally be more cautious and nervous, but even those dogs will get used to a lot of things if you show them to other doggies on time.

Being around kids is also very important. The best thing is that the kid and the puppy grow together. These dogs have the best bonds with children.

Bed Or Crate

This depends on your preference. Some people like to have a crate in which dogs will spend the night in. This means that you need to introduce this to them at an early age.

When they are puppies, you can fill it with a lot of toys, so they will know that this is a safe place.

This needs to be done slowly, and they can not afford to sense if you are getting aggravated if they don’t want to get in and stay there. Start with short periods of time, and gradually make them longer.

They need to learn that when bedtime comes, they get in and sleep until the morning.

Other people don’t want this option, and they don’t mind their dog sleeping all around the house. But, the good thing is to give them a dog bed, so they have a space that will be their “escape place”.

A lot of dogs will probably sleep all around the house, just like mine did. He had a bed that he rarely slept in, and preferred to sleep in some random places around the house.

Leash Training

This is also a very good thing. At first, you need to make sure that they get used to the leash. A lot of puppies get irritated with the leash at first.

There might be moments when you might think that they will never get used to it, but they will for sure.

Some dogs don’t mind it from the first time. As they grow older, it is a good thing to teach them how to behave without a leash.

This is where the commands ‘stop’ and ‘come’ are important. You need to make sure that your dog knows that it can’t go on the street.

If you call him, he should come to you even if he is in the middle of playtime. This comes in handy in the dog park or if you want to take a small stroll around the neighborhood.

The Mini Golden Retriever: Health Problems

mini golden retriever dog lying

Photo from: @_thekittychronicles_

Every breed has some health problems that they will be more prone to. This is especially connected with mixed breeds because they can inherit some issues from their parent breeds. But, with this dog, there aren’t many health issues.

They are generally healthy dogs, and their lifespan is around 12 to 15 years. Some of the health issues that these dogs might be prone to are:

– hip dysplasia

– cataracts

– diabetes

– cardiomyopathy

– obesity

– allergies

– kidney stones

This doesn’t mean that your dog will for sure have any of these issues. A regular vet checkup and health clearance from the breeder will be enough for your dog to live a long and happy life.

Sometimes, just like we humans, dogs can get sick, and this is not your fault. You can be doing everything right and they still might get sick.

The Mini Golden Retriever: Diet

mini golden retriever celebrating birthday with healthy cake in front him

Photo from: @lovethegroodle

Your puppy needs top-quality dog food, and we are sure you will provide it to them. There are a lot of options on the market, and it can get confusing, but you can always ask for advice from a vet or a breeder.

This doggy needs around two cups of food a day, that are divided into two meals. The meals need to be nutritious so they can stay healthy and full of energy.

Adding probiotics or Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids is always a good idea, but you should ask the vet first if you don’t have that much experience.

These fatty acids are not only beneficial for their health, but also for maintaining the quality of their coat. Your dog will also appreciate some treats, but make sure that you don’t overdo it.

It can cause them to gain weight, which can lead to other health problems.

The best treat you can give them is some whipped cream. Don’t make a habit out of it, but here and there is just fine, and they will love it.

Home-cooked meals are also an option, but that depends on you. Some dog owners mix it up a bit by giving their dog mainly kibble, but here and there, they will prepare a meal that is home-cooked. Avoid spicy food at all costs.


mini golden retriever sitting in the park and looking around

Does This Breed Have Other Names?

A lot of mixed breeds have a couple of names, and it is no different with this one. This one has quite a few of them.

– Small Golden Retriever

– Petite Golden Retriever

– Tiny Golden Retriever

– Golden Cocker Retriever

– Golden Retriever Poodle Mix

– Golden Cavalier

– Comfort Retriever

This can be a bit confusing. The fact that this breed is not purebred, but a mix is confusing enough for some people, let alone all these other names.

Where Can I Find A Mini Golden Retriever?

There are quite a lot of Mini Golden Retriever breeders that you can find. It is important to find a reputable breeder who does this out of love, and not because of profit.

A lot of these breeders will provide you with health certificates and a one-year health guarantee.

They will be more than happy to answer all your questions and provide the puppy with the best accommodation until it gets to your home. We named a couple of breeders that you can check out.


Pacific Northwest

Robyns Nest

But, be prepared for the price because these cuties can be quite expensive. You can find them anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000.

Do These Dogs Have Dwarfism?

No, this is not the case with this breed. Some of the signs that your dog has dwarfism are:

– A shorter jaw

– Crooked teeth

– Short legs and a long body

– Enlarged joints

– Bowed legs

– An enlarged head

We can understand why some people might think that these dogs have dwarfism. They look exactly like a purebred Goldie only smaller. But, this is just the way they are bred. Dwarfism comes with some of these signs, but it is never just a smaller size.

To Sum It Up

A lot of people have never heard of a miniature Golden Retriever, and the ones who have didn’t know that they are a mixed breed. They are perfect for people who would like to get a Golden Retriever, but they are just too big for them.

These cuties are unfortunately not AKC registered, but we hope they soon will be. These dogs have a lovely character, and they can get along with everyone.

They are adaptable to any environment. We hope that we presented the breed in the best way possible.

If you are thinking about getting this dog, we wish you all the luck in finding the perfect breeder, and that you and your doggy will live many happy years together.

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