Female/Male Dog, Which One to Get???

Updated on April 26, 2011
L.T. asks from Chicago, IL
21 answers

I posted a similar question, and THANKS for the responses, BUT, i typed the wrong type of dog!! LOL!! Sorry!!! Let's try this again....

We are looking into getting a dog. We've decided that a golden retriever is best for our family. We will be going to a breeder, and getting a puppy. Here's the question, male or female? Does anyone have experience with which one is best or does it really not matter.
Also, does anyone know of a good breeder in Chicagoland area??

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answers from Pittsburgh on

We just got a boxer puppy a month ago and we researched the same question. We ended up getting a male because it is said that females can be moody and more territorial and males can be more laid back I guess you could say. I am moody enough, I don't want to deal with another temperamental female! I know people with both sexes of dogs and I think a lot depends on the breed and mostly, on how its trained and raised.

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answers from Modesto on

I vote female. I have friends that have brother and sister retrievers. They are both great bit the sister is far more serious about taking care of mom, brother dog is always running around being "a showoff" and hangs with dad.
Girls dont lift their leg either, which is a plus.

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answers from Chicago on

You can find good puppies at rescues. Almost Home Foundation is a little far away for you, but I encourage you to check out their website. They also have "shows" with their foster dogs on Saturdays in the 'burbs. My daughter got a boxer puppy from them last fall. He is the best dog ever! (I have two dogs from them that I've had for years. A long-haired dachsund and a chihuahua. Also great dogs. There are just too many dogs needing a home -- no need to spend money on one.) And whatever you do, please sign up for training almost immediately. It's very important to train your dog properly. Behavioral problems are a big reason why so many dogs are homeless.


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answers from Minneapolis on

Looks like the responses are running about 50/50! LOL. I recently researched this question and came up with male. We now have an almost 9 month old male puppy. My research indicated that males generally make better family pets and that females can be more protective/territorial and latch on to one person. That was true with our previous terriers when we had one of each. That said, each puppy is an individual and I would concentrate more on finding the temperament that fits your family. Ask the breeder for their opinion and get their help in choosing the puppy with the personality for your family. We do have some friends who are in their 50s/60s who have had dogs all of their lives of a variety of breeds and sizes. They will only have neutered males in their house. Our puppy was neutered at 6 months, which I highly recommend unless you plan to show the dog. Good luck with your new puppy. Oh, I'm not in Chicago and not personally familiar with GR breeders, but you can probably contact the AKC for a list of reputable breeders in your area. Also, ask for references from people who have purchased puppies from that breeder. Most reputable breeders will offer a health guarantee, will ask you as many questions as you ask them and will put breeding restrictions on your purchase contract. After much research I was able to purchase our puppy from such a breeder and we have been very happy with him so far. As an added benefit, he was raised in a home and was exposed to a variety of dogs, people and children before we got him. He was well socialized. One more thing--most good breeders don't like to let their puppies go home until at least 9-10 weeks of age or even a little older. We got our puppy at 13 weeks. He slept through the night by his 2nd or 3rd night and he was already familiar with the concept of going potty outside.

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answers from Washington DC on

As a general rule of thumb males are more aggresseive than females, even in the more docile breeds, labs and goldens.
In general, not in every case
Males lift their legs to pee and will mark their territory in the house if not neutered.
They wil also hump things if not neutered soon enough.
THey are VERY protective of their property. .
Can be more agressive
are larger, not that it matters with a large breed dog like a golden

Females in general
Are protective of their people
If not spayed will spot every 6 months
hump other dogs, people to show dominance

Goldens are a great breed. Our piano teacher has a girl, and friends of ours have had boys. My cousin breeds them, she's in Montana though. All are great dogs. Personally I would get a female.

Later edit: AHAHAHA Lori A "peemail the neighborhood dogs". My female does that too.

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answers from Washington DC on

Golden Retrievers are sweet dogs, but are you aware of that breed having a particular issue with in-breeding? It is a notoriously in-bred breed. This can cause several health issues. Yes, mixed breeds have less issues, and to rescue a dog is much better than getting a puppy from a breeder, but since you have your mind made up on the breed and how you will acquire it, I would always choose male dog. They are more relaxed and friendlier, in my opinion...

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answers from Augusta on

Either , as i answered before.
What ever you get , get it fixed and go through a rescue group not a breeder.
Known documented fact, mix breeds have fewer health problems than pure breeds.
I was all pure breed dogs until I had to put my 8 yr old Sheltie down due to chronic kidney failure.
Pure breed dogs are pure breeds due to in breeding somewhere along the line. This causes health problems.
Check petfinder.com you may find what you are looking for there.

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answers from New York on

Definitely a male dog. We have a lab/pit bull mix. He's so friendly and funny. He's 2 years old and still pees like a girl dog. ;-(

We also love that he has short hair and not fur. I'm highly allergic to dog fur. Makes my eyes itch and water and I sneeze continually. It's just aweful. I like that he is easy to clean up after. No fur joining the dust bunnies. Definitely a plus.


answers from Jacksonville on

I think that females are easier to work into a family. But that is just my opinion. Unless you are planning to breed the animal (I don't recommend it if you are looking for a "family pet"), then regardless of male/female, you should get it spayed/neutered. Spaying may cost a bit more than neutering, but there are not annoying "humping" issues to deal with later on with females, typically. :)

Also, I think females tend to be more watchful and caring of little ones in the family, but this is not based on any kind of research I've done. Just my thoughts. I had male dogs growing up, and our family now has a female. She is SO good with our kids, and really, ALL kids. Male dogs that I have been around in recent years all seem a bit more aloof and unconcerned with children. But that could have more to do with training/socialization than their sex.
Females are often a little smaller than their male counterparts, too. But with a retriever, you're not going to have a small dog either way, lol.


answers from Dallas on

I grew up with all female dogs and they were all great. We just got a puppy from a rescue group in February, she's a girl. The whole family wanted a boy, but when they opened the cage she came right to us... I had to go with her... They told us she was a hound mix, but I really don't see any hound in her... I should have waited because she's a little more aggressive than I remember my golden retrievers where as pups, my daughter fell in love with her the moment we saw her, I still do most of the work, and she's picked me as her primary, she loves the family, accept my youngest 4 year old, those two pick on each other...
Before you get her, just be sure you are ready to do most of the work... because you will!



answers from New York on

We got a mutt from the pound and she's a treat. Only one word of caution on the male/ female debate. Getting a girl doesn't mean that she's not inclined to "mark." Our pup is much like a boy in this regards. She can go for endlessly long walks as she likes to "pee-mail" neighborhood dogs. Also, strangely, she will lift a leg like a boy.

If we had kept up with the training, she would have continued being curb trained, and walking on heel (no sniffing, no pulling, no lagging, no peeing). But my dad's a big softie, and lets the dog be a dog.

Goldens can get quite large, and I believe the boys get even bigger than the females. That might be a deciding factor for you.

Whatever gender you decide, you will be lucky to have a dog as part of your clan.


answers from Chicago on

I think it is a personal choice and in my house we have ALL boy dogs! Partially because we are not going to breed and I did not want to end up with a preggers pup before we got her fixed.


answers from Norfolk on

I like spayed females.
Golden retriever is a great breed and very family friendly.
Any dog will consider it's yard to be their territory but with a male (even neutered) they will want to mark it (lift the leg and pee) and that can get annoying.



answers from Albany on

i dislike boy dogs very much. They pee on EVERYTHING!!!!! We have a male Austrialian shepherd and he doesnt waste any time to not pee on anything. He even pees on peoples legs if they have a pet at home. the next dog we get will be a girl, and as soon as she is of age, we will get her fixed so we dont have any "female dripplets" on anything. Good luck



answers from Orlando on

I think either is fine and like someone else said it's soooo much more important to find the correct temperment for your family:) BUT, having said that, my best dogs I've ever had have been males. Just the sweetest. I have a male golden ret mix right now named Charlie and he is just the sweetest:) And my favorite dog ever was Jordan a 130lb german shep mix:) I love my boys! Oh and my dogs never peed on everything (lol) just normal peeing outside for my boys.



answers from Colorado Springs on

Labs, Goldens... hey, the difference is the length of hair! :^)

I believe there's a Canine Companions for Independence office in the Chicago area, and those people try to keep up with all things doggish. Maybe if you called the office, they might be able to give you a lead on a breeder. I don't promise that they can, but it couldn't hurt to ask.

If you call, please give them tail-wagging best regards from Colorado CCI pup Harriet III....



answers from Kansas City on

I've only had girl dogs and they've been wonderful. I don't think it matters as much when you get him/her as a puppy. It's all in how you train them.


answers from Jacksonville on

I vote female, just because right now I am really annoyed at my male dog for hiking on my daughter's chair. Might I also suggest going to a rescue instead of a breeder? There are lots of great rescue's out there, and there are some that only rescue certain breeds. :) Also if you do go to a breeder, you might want to ask how many litters the mama dog has had. If the number is high go somewhere else, it means that dog has been way overbreed, the pups will probably not be healthy. Besides, it's cruel to the mama dog.


answers from Boca Raton on

I think either is fine but "personally" I've had better luck training males... GOOD LUCK and congrats on your new addition!



answers from Utica on

Ive heard before that females are much more territorial than males. So maybe a female would connect more easily with the family and kids.
Good Luck



answers from Milwaukee on

We always have preferred males over females.

Females RUN the house and currently we have TWO in house(Sometimes when you get a rescue dogs you get what you get.) One is really laid back but that's because she's deaf and just a happy Boxer (as Boxer usually are.) The other one is just constantly under foot and wants to be a part of everything involving food.

I think BREEDS are more important than gender and you picked a good one!

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