Now, this might seem like a strange physical trait to those who aren’t familiar with dogs. If you are confused about what webbed feet really are, then you can this about it by picturing a duck’s feet in your mind. While it doesn’t look exactly like that, it’s pretty close to what you would expect. Webbing on a dog’s feet means that there is extra skin between the toes of the dog. How exactly do you check this? You can lift your dog’s paw and spread the toes apart. If you see that there is excess skin there, just like that of a duck’s feet, then you know that your dog has webbed feet.
But a dog’s webbed feet are not exactly like a duck’s webbed feet. A dog’s feet have partial webbing. What this means is that the excess skin on a dog’s feet connects its toes together. This brings us to the main question of this article: do golden retrievers have webbed feet?
The Origin of Webbed Feet in Golden Retrievers
The answer to the question asked above is, yes, golden retrievers have webbed feet. In fact, the golden retriever is one of many dog breeds that have webbed feet. Other dog breeds with webbed feet include the Newfoundland, Portuguese Water Dog, Otterhound, German Shorthaired Pointer, Labrador Retriever, Dachshund, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, and Irish Water Spaniel.
This physical feature was passed down to golden retrievers as a result of evolution since these dogs were originally bred to be hunting dogs – their main purpose was to retrieve game for hunters. When people would go duck hunting, they would take along golden retrievers to retrieve the waterfowl after it had been shot out of the air. As for the purpose of webbed feet in golden retrievers and how they help the dog out, read on to find out.
Purpose of Webbed Feet in Golden Retrievers
Webbed feet help golden retrievers swim efficiently and allow these dogs to navigate their way through vast bodies of water. A good way to think of this is that their webbed feet act like a pair of flippers in the water. They help the golden retriever glide on the surface of the water, removing all objects and even people that come in the way. Their webbed feet help them paddle for longer distances as well, which means that they can cover a large distance before they get tired.
Along with being able to move around in water efficiently, a golden retriever’s webbed feet also help it navigate through different types of terrain.
Webbed feet help golden retrievers run on muddy surfaces as well. The webbing on their feet makes it so that they don’t slip on slick spots, and don’t sink into places where the mud is soft and soggy.
The golden retriever absolutely loves being around water and loves to swim, so it doesn’t come across as a surprise that this dog has webbed feet. In addition to hunting and swimming, the golden retriever’s webbed feet also help it when it comes to saving those who are in some sort of peril or at the risk of drowning. Owing to the love that this dog has for humans, they will not hesitate for even a second if they see any human drowning in a water body and will jump in to save them immediately. This is why golden retrievers are often used as lifeguard dogs, and their webbed feet play a massive role in how efficient they are in this regard.
3 Other Facts about Your Golden Retriever’s Paws
So that was all about the webbed feet of golden retrievers – their origin, their purpose, and how they help the golden retriever in various tasks. However, there are so many fascinating things about golden retriever paws.
Here are some facts about golden retriever paws listed below:
Golden Retriever Paw Fact #1
Just like us humans, a golden retriever can also get sweaty hands (paws). There are sweat glands on the inner layer of skin on your dog’s paws that move all the sweat to the outer layer of the skin. This helps with keeping your golden retriever cool and keeps its pads and its webbed feet from drying out too much! Your golden retriever can also start sweating from its paws if it gets anxious or stressed out, or if it senses any sort of danger.
Golden Retriever Paw Fact #2
Most golden retrievers put all of their weight on their digits when they run fast, just like us humans put all of our weight on our heels. Owing to this fact, a dog’s toe bones are really important.
Golden Retriever Paw Fact #3
Your golden retriever will love it if you massage its webbed feet gently. It gives them a lot of comfort because it promotes better blood circulation. It is recommended that you rub them between the pads on the bottom of the paw and between each toe, too.
Grooming Your Golden Retriever
Along with massaging your golden retriever’s webbed feet, you also need to make sure that you groom your golden retriever just right so that, alongside looking neat and tidy, it can also bear with the weather conditions. Here are a few things that you can do to groom your golden retriever in the right way.
Brush Your Dog Regularly
You should invest in a good quality bristle brush to regularly brush your dog. An undercoat rake can also be used to brush your golden retriever, as it will reduce the intensity of shedding for your golden retriever and you will also get rid of any tangles in your dog’s fur.
Keep the Nails Trimmed
You should trim the nails of your dog on a regular basis since long nails can be extremely uncomfortable for them. If left untrimmed, long nails can interfere with their ability to walk properly and may also compromise the paw-shape of your dog. It’s recommended that you trim your dog’s nails every two weeks and be extra careful when clipping their nails.
The tail of your dog also needs to be groomed regularly – it should appear to look like a fan. You can do this by grooming it in a certain manner. The best way to do this is by twisting the end of the tail, placing your thumb on the end of the tailbone, and then trimming the area near the thumb.
Keep its Ears Clean and Trimmed
The ears of your golden retriever also need to be groomed from the inside and the outside. You should ensure that the hair inside the ear is thin, while the hair on the outside of the ear and the edges should always be neat. Golden retrievers are also prone to getting ear infections, which is why you should regularly check their ears and clean them.
Our Final Thoughts
On a final note, the golden retriever is a highly recommended pet for families. Not only are they very friendly to humans and other animals, but they are also very protective of their owners, which is why they are one of the most popular dog breeds in the US.
The golden retriever’s webbed feet help it in doing so many things like swimming, running on muddy surfaces, and hunting. As mentioned earlier, a lot of dog breeds have webbed feet, and the golden retriever is one of them. Owing to the fact that this breed was bred for hunting and retrieving waterfowl, the webbed feet of the golden retriever help it run and swim faster to catch its prey.