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Do Golden Retrievers Smell? 7 Working Tips to Help

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on April 12, 2024 by Dogster Team

Golden Retriever sitting in the dirt

Do Golden Retrievers Smell? 7 Working Tips to Help

Our canine friends have a special place in our hearts and homes. But some breeds can be smellier than others. What about the Golden Retriever? As a classic retrieving dog built for the outdoors, does this breed carry a stronger scent than their peers?

Like all dogs, Golden Retrievers can smell, but much of this can be reduced with proper grooming. Let’s find out what contributes to the scent of these gorgeous canines and where they rank among other breeds.

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Golden Retrievers: Level of Smell

All dogs develop a smell if they aren’t properly bathed. Just like humans, dogs collect grime and debris in their hair and skin. With proper coat maintenance, they won’t generate much odor.

Certain hunting breeds like Beagles or Basset Hounds emit a scent that people often refer to as “hound scent.” Wrinkly breeds like Bulldogs and Pugs can smell bad due to the bacteria buildup between their skin flaps.

However, Goldens are pretty straightforward when it comes to smell. They generally smell pleasing until they’ve gone too long without a bath. Like many other breeds, you should bathe, brush, and feed your Golden Retriever regularly.

Golden retriever standing in the beach
Image Credit: Lars_Nissen, Pixabay

What Can Influence Your Golden’s Odor?

If your Golden Retriever suffers from allergies, they might have a certain smell. Sometimes these types of allergies cause yeast to grow on the skin. The yeast has a very particular foul smell, and it can cause ear infections in some cases too.

Other signs of skin allergies include:

  • Excessive scratching
  • Rashes
  • Hot spots
  • Yeast overgrowth
  • Ear infections

Allergies can come from environmental or dietary triggers. If you suspect that your Golden Retriever has allergies, you should make an appointment with your vet for further investigation. Once your vet runs some tests or trials, you can pinpoint and eliminate the trigger.

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The 7 Tips for Keeping Your Golden Retriever Smelling Good

Keeping your Golden smelling like a million bucks can be a constant task, but you’ll get into a routine that works for you. Here are seven tips to keep them tidied up.

1. Practice Regular Bathing

Dogs need baths less often than us, but they do start stinking after a while. On average, you should bathe your Golden Retriever as frequently as most other canines: every 4 to 6 weeks.

Golden Retrievers can have allergy issues or sensitivities to certain shampoos. As a precaution, you could immediately start by using fragrance-free shampoos.

Overbathing can cause other issues, like dandruff and dry skin. This can lead to excessive itching. Try to bathe your dog no more than once a month. For Goldens with extra sensitive skin, you might have to wait 6 weeks or longer in between.

Dog bath with shampoo
Image By: Autri Taheri, Unsplash

2. Commit to Daily Brushing

It’s a good idea to brush your Golden every day—if nothing else than because they have long fur. Brushing has lots of benefits that promote blood circulation, oil production, and good hygiene. Also, brushing helps loosen and remove dirt and debris that can get stuck in the coat.

Since this breed has a double coat, occasionally brushing deeply with a de-shedding tool can help combat dander, matting, and shedding. If properly managed with brushing, your Golden can smell good for longer between baths.

3. Keep Up With Oral Hygiene

Does anyone like hot, stinky dog breath in their face? To combat the aromatic vapors burning holes in your olfactory organ, your Golden should have their teeth brushed every day.

Also, it’s best to start as early as possible. Even though puppy teeth will inevitably fall out to make way for larger canines, it can be a trial run to familiarize themselves with the process.

hand brushing dog's teeth
Image By: Littlekidmoment, Shutterstock

4. Offer Dry Baths

You could always try a bath between baths, so to speak. To keep your Golden’s fur from having oil and debris buildup, you can try natural or store-bought dry dog shampoos to neutralize odors and keep the fur fresh.

Corn starch or powder will do the trick too, as the substance absorbs oil. You should always be careful with this method, however, as Goldens are prone to having sensitive skin. Try to go fragrance, dye, and chemical free if you can.

5. Choose the Correct Diet

Believe it or not, diet plays a very vital role in how your dog smells. Lots of dogs suffer from some type of food allergy, which can cause yeast to grow on the skin. Cleaner ingredients, as you might guess, equal less smelliness.

The general rule of thumb here is, the more natural, the better. That means the higher quality of the diet, the better shape your dog will be in.

Golden retriever puppies eating dog food
Image Credit: jagdprinzessin, Pixabay

6. Take Them to a Professional Groomer

There’s nothing wrong with a little royal treatment. Your Goldie can go see their stylist roughly every 6 weeks. Unlike home baths, groomers use lots of tools and resources people often don’t have at home. They can get in deep, making your pup feel fresh from their bare skin to the tips of their fur.

It’s refreshing for your dog to have clean, aromatic fur. Plus, it’s a good social outing for them too. Why not splurge on occasion?

7. Wash Their Bedding & Blankets

You can give your dog a bath on a regular schedule. However, if they still have dirt and grime on their blankets, beds, and clothes, they are going to get dirty again pretty quickly.

Leftover smells remain on the blankets and bedding, causing dirt, debris, bacteria, and skin particles to collect on the material. If your dog lies in the bed, the same smelliness will find your dog again. It’s best if you wash your dog’s bedding and blankets once every 2 weeks.

Image Credit: Steve Buissinne, Pixabay

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With proper care, diet, and health, your Golden Retriever shouldn’t smell bad often. If you implement good grooming habits, you can have a clean-smelling dog with no lingering odors.

So, now you know that the Golden Retriever isn’t a breed that generally has a lot of odor concerns, but it’s still a good idea to maintain their hygiene appropriately, including teeth brushing. Oral health is just as important!

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Featured Image Credit: Olena Brodetska, Shutterstock

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