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A look at the breed and its nature

Or what you should know about the Flat Coated Retriever breed before you get one.

Flat is an excellent family companion, he is still a cheerful dog with a constantly wagging tail and an incredibly positive attitude towards everything and everyone, loving his family to the grave.
He gets into everything and with unrelenting, giant enthusiasm, whatever activity you engage with him, he will happily do anything as long as he can do it with you.
He loves water from the bottom of his heart and can find it even where you don't know about it. (puppies try to bathe in a bowl of water to begin with, I recommend putting a mat under the bowl if you don't plan to have a pool at home) Flat is a great partner for hikes, but also for "just" longer, regular walks. It is a sociable, contact dog, great as a family dog, but also a hunting, assistance and rescue dog. Thanks to his enthusiasm, dexterity and good nose, he is also suitable for various cynological disciplines such as nosework, obedience, agility, dog dancing.
It's a really versatile partner that won't let you down, no matter what you decide to do.
Why can you do so many things with flat and what can we expect from it next?
The Flat Coated Retriever comes from England (hence the love of water), in translation it means flat-coated retriever, and according to the classification of the International Cynological Federation, it belongs to the group of scouts, retrievers and water dogs. It is a hunting breed and was bred as a versatile hunter in water and on land. It is therefore often used as an active companion or as a hunting dog. Although the Flat is classified as a retriever, it has a kind, friendly nature like its fellow retrievers. But after all, they differ from them in something. As I already mentioned, flat is a lover of all possible activities and does not like boredom.
His nature is very active and when I write a lot, I really mean a lot. Well, so that we don't just wave our hands, but what, the active gets tired and it's done. A flat is quite an intelligent creature and if you combine these two character traits together, it is quite clear that if you do not give a flat enough enjoyment or some activity or enough entertainment, it will become a bored flat.
Bored flat - naughty flat. I wouldn't say it's that much worse compared to other breeds. Any animal, actually even a person, if they are bored, nothing good will ever come of it. :)
That's why I think it's a pretty good idea to notify future owners in advance. They will certainly appreciate it before they have to redo a bitten apartment, their dog will swing on the chandelier, stand on the kitchen counter and finish dinner, or bark the night shift in the garden. At the same time, this undesirable behavior can be avoided quite easily and naturally. Provide the dog with sufficient activity / entertainment. Sounds so simple right? But there's really nothing more to it...

As I already indicated, boredom in a dog can manifest itself in various bad habits. I'll sum it up to destroying things in the home, the garden, or by constant barking. That is why the flat is especially for those who can keep it busy both physically and mentally. If you don't give him enough of your time, he will find the discharge of his carefully created energy (be careful, no one here has yet figured out where he takes it all the time) in his own way, and we're at it again. Bored flat... Another very important part is closely related to this and that is education. Dog training is undoubtedly a basic and very indispensable process for all breeds. The more you focus on his education in the beginning, the more you can enjoy a beautiful and comfortable life with a well-behaved dog. Not only you, your dog, but also your surroundings will be happy.

However, I would like to add that the character is created by the owner himself, the environment in which the puppy grows up and subsequently lives. The situations he gets into, the experiences he has and many other factors.
With a flat guy, you also need to pay attention to his sad eyes and to recognize an excess of intelligence or even pissiness...:)
He uses his cleverness in all possible directions, so it is good to be able to keep him busy enough to use it only where he has it and not for unnecessary pranks.
Naturally, and especially in puberty, he likes to test where the exact boundaries are. What he can get away with, or what not.
Therefore, you need to be consistent and not be softened by their loving expression and bright smile, from ear to ear. :)
Flatties have puberty a little longer than is common for dogs and practically their whole life they feel like a puppy. Calming down can only appear around 7-8 years.

And what to take away from it in conclusion?

Although the Flat is an active breed, it is not only about the nature itself. It is also about you, your upbringing and attitude. Above, I tried to zoom in on what can happen, but it doesn't have to. Flats are great personalities and can be a mirror to us, but they can also recognize where the boundaries are no longer there. The character traits of each individual may differ, you may come across individuals with a calmer nature, but I would not advise you to follow them and rely on your apartment being an exception. (And don't take the concept of a calmer nature completely from a flatmate) :D
In short, the FCR breed is a good member of the family, a partner for everything. As I have already mentioned, it is important to follow the above rules - enjoyment - training - love and attention. Then he will become a comfortable companion who will let you breathe for a while and likes to curl up in a ball by your side. :)

You can also find a nice summary about the breed on the webfordog page here:

Breed standard

Country of origin: Great Britain

General appearance: bright, lively dog of medium size, intelligent expression, characterized by strength without clumsiness and breed type without excessive thinness

Characteristics: a generally gifted dog with innate hunting qualities, optimistic and friendly, which is shown by cheerful movement of the rod.

Temperament: friendly and calm

Head and Skull: The head is long and beautifully shaped. The skull is flat and reasonably wide, with an inconspicuous footprint that never accentuates the facial features. The muzzle is properly developed, the nostrils are open. The jaws are long and strong, capable of carrying a hare or pheasant.

Eyes: medium-sized, dark brown or hazel, with an intelligent expression (round, bulging eyes are highly undesirable). They are not placed diagonally.

Ears: small, well set, hanging down according to the head.

Morda: the jaws are strong, with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, that is, the upper incisors closely overlap the lower incisors and grow straight out of the jaws. The teeth are healthy and strong.

Neck: the head is well carried on the neck, the neck is somewhat longer and dry. It is symmetrically placed obliquely in the shoulders, it passes well in the line of the back, which allows easy movement when stalking prey.

Forequarters: The chest is deep and broad with a well-formed ribcage on which the shoulders can move freely. The movement of the front limbs is regular. The front legs are straight and have a good skeletal foundation.

Body: Ribs are moderately sprung, short and broad. A soft back is highly undesirable.

Hindquarters: They are muscular, correctly angulated, straight. The stance is firm, broad. A cow attitude is highly undesirable.

Paws: round and strong, toes are closed and properly arched. The pillows are thick and firm.

Rod: is short, straight, well set, cheerfully carried, but never carried above the level of the rump.

Movement: light, fluid, direct and generous when viewed from the front and behind.

Coat: dense, fine to medium coarse, but of good quality, close as possible. The limbs and trunk are well furred. Full coat in adulthood increases the elegance of the individual.

Coloration: black or liver brown only.

Size: desirable weight in good condition: males 27 - 36 kg, bitches 25 - 32 kg. Desirable withers height: males 58 - 61 cm, bitches 56 - 59 cm.

Defects: any deviations from the above points must be considered as defects and their severity must be related according to the degree of manifestation in relation to the standard.

Note: dogs must have two distinct normal testicles, fully descended into the scrotum.​

Source: Retriver.cz