Many canine breeds are good with children and Golden Retreivers are one of the best. The American Kennel Club places Goldens fourth after the Bulldog (1), Beagle (2), and the Newfoundland (3). Labs at number 5 were right after Golden Retrievers.
When Kloe first joined our pack it took her a few days but she eventually engaged Kali in play. All of 15 pounds when she came home Kloe would run full speed at Kali nipping at her ears and bouncing off Kali’s torso, hips and head. It was warming to see Kali, at 60 pounds, play so gently with Kloe instinctively knowing that Kloe was obviously smaller but also a “baby”. During tug-o-war Kali could have shaken the rope toy hard enough to launch Kloe into the air but she didn’t. She would hold on lightly and allow Kloe to gain some ground. Kloe would eventually tire, lie down on her belly, and Kali would drag her along the carpet or kitchen tile for a ride.
A little over a year later its fun to watch Kloe, now at 80 pounds, approach her big sister much in the same way she did when she was just a bitty pup.
Kloe still blind sides Kali at full speed, often with a toy in her mouth, daring Kali to fight back as if Kali has a choice. The difference now is that Kloe has a 20 pound advantage over Kali who has to go full strength as a matter of self preservation. And some games never change. Often after several minutes of tug-o-war Kloe will lie flat on her stomach, front and back legs fully extended, and Kali drags her along the carpet and Kitchen tile.
Until recently Kloe had not been around any young pups and I wondered how she would act if she was. At only fifteen months does she possess the same instincts that seven year old Kali demonstrated with her baby sister a year ago? Kloe has always had just one speed during play: 11 of on a scale of 10. Through training and to some degree maturity (did I just use the word maturity in a sentence with Kloe?!?) Kloe is calmer around people when she first meets them. It’s hard for her but she is learning what’s expected and keeps all her feet on the ground while wagging her butt feverishly. Usually there is a thought bubble over her head that says, “Hi! I love you! Do you see me? I am really really glad you are here! Do you see me? Did I tell you I love you?”
The young pup that Kloe met recently was not of the canine persuasion. It was a human
pup baby. Perri is the granddaughter of our friends Marty and Jen. We were at Marty and Jen’s for a BBQ when Perri was introduced to Kloe. Kloe was very interested and saw that this was a person who just happened to be very small and very young. In fact Kloe and Perri are just about the same age. Kloe probably instinctively knew she had an advantage in most major categories:
- Age – tie
- Agility – Kloe major advantage
- Intelligence – Kloe slight advantage
- Weight – Kloe Super major advantage
- Cute factor – Tie with the smallest of tie breakers going to Kloe (full disclosure: Perri’s parents and Grandparents were not consulted for the rating of this category)
Kloe laid at grandpa Marty’s feet while he held Perri in his lap. She was fascinated and so very calm as she watched Perri’s every move. I believe that with any dog, and I mean any dog, one must be very cautious with babies and they should not be allowed on the ground with the dog nearby until both parties – dog owner and parent/grandparent – are sure it’s safe.
So was the case with Kloe and Perri. Perri was eventually allowed to sit on the ground near Kloe. Our 80 pound bundle of energy 11 on scale of 10 “puppy” laid there calmly next to Perri and just hung out with “the baby” and let her do her thing.
But just for good measure, and so Perri knew that she loved her, Kloe gave Perri a little kiss on her nose, captured in the video below.
Take that Bulldog, Beagle, and Newfoundlanders!
Young Pups Kloe and Perri