I received a call from a former puppy buyer today. It's time for his family to acquire a new puppy, but this time it's his wife's turn to choose the breed. He'd rather have another Lab, but his wife wants a Golden. They live in the Chicago area and would like to know of any good breeders within a reasonable drive (maybe 5 hours or less?).
They're leaning toward a dog from a field background (smaller size and maybe smarter and easier to train), but they may consider a moderate show golden. They're looking primarily for a companion dog and don't intend to run any performance events, but he hasn't ruled out hunting. I believe they're looking for a sound, healthy, long-lived, dog with a good temperament.
Being a Lab guy, I don't know who might be producing Golden retrievers that might meet their needs, but I knew I'd get some good input from the RTF gang.
Also, what health clearances are appropriate for Goldens? I'm assuming hips, elbows, and eyes, but I'm unsure of the genetic diseases that can be screened for in Goldens. Any input on this subject would also be appreciated!
Thanks for your input!