Can my Golden Retriever sleep outside?

Updated 15/01/2023

Can my Golden Retriever sleep outside?
Image by John Collins

can your Golden Retriever sleep outside? A Golden Retriever is typically comfortable sleeping outdoors if you provide a kennel.

The Golden Retriever is undoubtedly a hardy breed of dog, but they are also highly sociable and loyal too, to the extent that many Golden Retrievers will exhibit some signs of separation anxiety, at least once during their lifetime.

This undying loyalty means that many Golden Retriever owners like to bring their Golden Retriever pooch in to lie with them, in their bed.

Perhaps you may regard this as a bit extreme. But one other thing you may be thinking is, can my Golden Retriever sleep outside? This is what we’re exploring in this article:

Was the Golden Retriever bred to sleep outside?

Did you know that the Golden Retriever was first bred as a dog that would fetch birds from the water on behalf of hunters? They were on the go all day and needed good stamina to keep them going – a trait which the Golden Retriever retains to this day.

However, the Golden Retriever was never bred to sleep outside. Their insulating coat and high obedience make it possible for the Golden Retriever to spend the night in a yard, but the Golden Retriever was never supposed to sleep outside.

But would a Golden Retriever get too warm sleeping indoors?

The Golden Retriever is indeed a large breed of dog. However, unlike some other large breeds of dog, the Golden Retriever does not have the warmest, non-shedding topcoat.

Instead, though the Golden Retriever does have a warm enough undercoat, which it sheds a fair amount.

This shedding can be something of a hindrance for you if your Golden Retriever is spending most of their time indoors, but their thin coat is something that prevents a Golden Retriever from overheating indoors.

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Would a Golden Retriever be warm enough when sleeping outside?

Whether in a backyard or at the park, a Golden Retriever loves to spend hours outdoors playing fetch, tug of war, and whatever else, as long as they’re playing it with their favourite people.

Rain or shine, they seem to be comfortable enough, whatever the conditions. So you’d think they’d be happy enough to sleep outside too – right?

Well, as we touched upon previously, when it comes to spending very long periods of time in extreme conditions, a Golden Retriever has no fur coverage worth speaking of to protect them from longer spells.

So, although a Golden Retriever is happy enough bouncing around the yard after a ball, they cannot comfortably spend hours in a stationary position with little shelter from cooler nighttime temperatures, and would likely persistently bark and scratch at the door to get in.

However, if you do provide some shelter, like a warm kennel or porch, your Golden Retriever should sleep soundly through the night, safe from rain and other extreme weather conditions.

You may also like to consider investing in a good pet blanket, one that’s large enough for your Golden Retriever.

Also, if you are really having an extreme Winter, there are now heated pet sleeping pads that are guaranteed to provide your Golden Retriever with plenty of heat throughout the night.

Would sounds wake a Golden Retriever when they sleep outdoors?

As a dog bred to cooperate with hunters, the Golden Retriever hasn’t really had their hearing senses honed or developed that much.

However, that being said, the Golden Retriever has the same bionic hearing as any other dog.

So, if a Golden Retriever were sleeping outside, they would probably be keenly aware of any bats, squirrels, foxes, raccoons, or cats moving around, making them pretty likely to waken up frequently and start barking or howling, disturbing the whole neighbourhood!

But even if they don’t start barking, sleeping outdoors in an area with a lot of noise doesn’t exactly afford a restful sleep for your Golden Retriever.

Under these conditions, it is unlikely that a Golden Retriever would get much proper sleep, which could, in extreme situations, lead to some negative behaviors in their day to day life.

So yes, since there are many sounds that are likely to wake a Golden Retriever if they sleep outdoors, it can be better for a Golden Retriever to sleep indoors if this occurs.

Would a Golden Retriever be safe outdoors?

Part of the reason why a Golden Retriever is so popular and makes such an appealing pet is, they are an incredibly friendly, loyal, and trusting breed of dog.

And unlike some other breeds of dog, this trust and obedience do not only extend to one person, or just the family – instead, the Golden Retriever gets along great with anybody and everybody!

Bringing home new guests and friends is never any problem with this dog.

If anyone broke into the garden and tried to steal your Golden Retriever, this peaceful pooch would sooner fetch their leash or offer them their favorite tennis ball than ward the burglar off.

So if you are letting your Golden Retriever sleep outside, their security is a major thing for you to consider. You may feel your yard’s fencing is secure enough. But, if you have any concerns, you might want to look into a good lock or two, or setting up a run for your Golden Retriever.

Is it cruel to make my Golden Retriever sleep outside?

Not at all. If you feel that your Golden Retriever is safe and comfortable enough outside, and they appear quite happy, why wouldn’t you let them sleep outside?

After all, there can be so many dangerous things in the house that this mouthy breed would love to pick up in their mouth given the chance, as well as things that could make a noise and wake them up.

Many Golden Retrievers could honestly end up with a more restful sleep if they spend it outdoors. What’s more is, lots of Golden Retrievers actually seem to want to sleep outside.

After you let them out for that final night time wander, it can be difficult to get some Golden Retrievers to come back into the house. Why not leave them out there, if they are enjoying it? Of course, they may insist on taking their favorite tennis ball or another toy out with them. But this is fairly standard behavior.

Can my Golden Retriever sleep outside?

So, to wrap this article up – can your Golden Retriever sleep outside? With their weatherproof hunter’s coat, the Golden Retriever is typically quite comfortable outdoors.

But the Golden Retriever is also a big pack animal and people-person type of dog. They can be your shadow, sticking beside you, and always wanting to be near to you.

Because of this, even though they can sleep outside, many Golden Retrievers really do not want to, no matter how plush a kennel or bed you provide.

That being said, if your Golden Retriever wants to sleep outside and they are safe enough and quiet enough out there, there’s no reason why a Golden Retriever shouldn’t sleep outside.

As long as they have enough access to clean, freshwater, and as long as they have enough shelter to keep them dry, it’s absolutely fine for your Golden Retriever to sleep outside.

Q and A for Golden Retrievers and sleeping outside

Do golden retrievers like to sleep outside?

Golden Retrievers are very adaptable and can sleep both inside and outside. As Golden Retrievers are domestic pets, it is generally recommended to keep them indoors, especially at night, to ensure their safety and well-being.

Do golden retrievers like to sleep in a dog bed?

Some Golden Retrievers may prefer the comfort of a dog bed to sleep in, while others may prefer to sleep in a crate or with their owners. It ultimately depends on the individual dog’s preferences. Providing a comfortable and cosy dog bed is a great option, but it’s important to ensure that the dog is comfortable.

Can Golden Retrievers Sleep Outside In The Cold?

Golden Retrievers, like most dogs, have a thick coat of fur that helps keep them warm in cold weather. However, it is not recommended to leave a Golden Retriever outside in extremely cold temperatures for extended periods of time. Cold weather can be dangerous for dogs and can lead to hypothermia and other health problems.

Do golden retrievers have separation anxiety sleeping outside?

Sleeping outside alone can be a problem for Golden Retrievers with separation anxiety because they may feel anxious and stressed without their owner’s presence. However, if a Golden Retriever is well-adjusted and has a healthy relationship with their owner, they may be able to sleep outside without developing separation anxiety. Every dog is unique, and it’s important to observe their behavior and provide them with the best sleeping environment for their individual needs.

For more about Golden Retrievers see my other articles below

By Michelle McDaid

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