All the retrievers were originally bred to retrieve prey, most often birds and return it to the hunter without damage. That is why all of them have soft and gentle mouth. Because they were often retrieving birds, such as ducks, they must be great swimmers and indeed, all of them love water. Great fact about all the retrievers is, that they are intelligent and most importantly, extremely eager to please, which makes them highly trainable companions. They are definitely not as stubborn as other hunting breeds, for example spaniels or pointers. And now lets jump into the list of all Retriever dog breeds.
1) Labrador Retriever
I will rank the Retrievers based on their popularity. And the most popular retriever and well most popular dog breed in the world is the famous Labrador Retriever. I will be honest, it is my favourite dog breed as well, i love their friendly, playful, yet eager to please and highly trainable personality. The Labrador is very empathetic and adaptable.
They are better suited for more active people, especially when they are younger, they will be always ready for any kind of an adventure. Labradors are also the number one service dog breed for blind people, which proves their high trainability and eagerness to please. If you are looking for a larger breed, but you do not have much experiences with dogs, Labrador might be a perfect choice for you.
2) Golden Retriever
The second Retriever which is very well known worldwide and in most countries they are in TOP 10 most popular breeds. And it is no wonder, they are, just like labs very intelligent, eager to please and playful. I would say they are little bit more laid back than Labs, but the difference is definitely not extreme. If you are interested what are the main differences between Labs and Goldens, i am giving you link to my another video which is just about this topic.
3) Chesapeake Bay Retriever
This breed was developed from two pups who were rescued from a foundering ship in Maryland in the beggining of the 19th century. Those two dogs were most likely St. Johns Water dogs or Lesser Newfoundlands. The two were not bred to each other but were interbred with other dogs in the area and their offsprings were the first Chesapeake Bay Retrievers. Chesapeake is easy to recognize from other Retrievers thanks to its wavy coat that is oily to the touch.
4) Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is the smallest of all retrievers, but they still have very high energy and they act like big dogs. You should not underestimate it, they really have high energy and need daily proper exercise to stay healthy and happy, which includes longer walks, hikes, swims, vigorous playtime or longer training sessions. The Duck Toller looks kinda fox like and they have wavy coat that varies from a golden color to a darker copper.
5) Flat Coated Retriever
The Flat Coated Retriever is very similar to the Labrador Retriever, but they have longer coat, and its body is leaner and i would say more elegant. They also have longer head than other retrievers. Just like all retrievers, this is energetic, playful, social, friendly and outgoing dog breed.
6) Curly Coated Retriever
Probably the oldest of all retrievers, the Curly Coater retriever is also the oldest one. It is believed that they are descendants of 16th-century English Water Spaniel, the St. John’s Newfoundland, the retrieving setter, and, in the late 19th century, the Poodle.
It is easy to recognize them thanks to the small tight curls on their body. Great fact is, that they are not shedding as much as other retrievers, because most of them sheds like crazy.
It is important to say, that almost any breed can be trained to retrieve, but a true retrieving dog usually has a natural obsession with birds that manifests itself from puppyhood. There are some other breeds, that are not marked as retrievers, but that has great retrieving skills. I can definitely mention a Spanish Water dog, Welsh Springer Spaniel, Poodle, Newfoundland, Vizsla, Gordon Setter, German Pointer, English Pointer, Brittany, Boykin Spaniel or American Water Spaniel. All these dogs can be trained to be great retrieving dogs, but they are naturally not built for this kind of a job.