Breed Information Centre

Retriever (Flat Coated)


Illustration of Retriever (Flat Coated)

At one time the breed was known as the Wavy Coated Retriever and it is thought that the more racy lines of the Flatcoat comes from some Setter ancestry mixed with Spaniel and Retriever blood. At first the early breeders kept only black puppies despite the occasional golden puppy in the litter. Later selective breeding established the liver colour. The early popularity of the breed as a working gundog has been overtaken by the Labrador. The Flatcoat was popular in the late 1800’s on the large shooting estates. The founder of the Kennel Club, Mr Sewallis Evelyn Shirley, who was its Chairman from 1873 to 1899, was a great enthusiast of the breed and helped stabilise breed type.

Breed Group
Vulnerable Native Breed
How much exercise?
More than 2 hours per day
Length of coat
How much grooming?
More than once a week
Supposedly sheds? *
Town or Country
Type of home
Large House
Minimum Garden Size
Under 10 Years

* If you are asthmatic or have an allergy, you should consult your medical advisor before considering obtaining a dog. More information can also be found on the Kennel Club website.

The Gundog Breed Group

Dogs that were originally trained to find live game and/or to retrieve game that had been shot and wounded. This group is divided into four categories - Retrievers, Spaniels, Hunt/Point/Retrieve, Pointers and Setters - although many of the breeds are capable of doing the same work as the other sub-groups. They make good companions, their temperament making them ideal all-round family dogs.

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