Black Golden Retrievers Are Not What You Think!

The “Black Golden” is not a variant of the Golden Retriever. But rather, it is a separate breed known as the Flat-Coated Retriever.

Breeding a Golden Retriever with a black Lab may also produce a pup with a black coat, but it increases the puppy’s risk for developing a myriad of genetic problems.

flat coated retriever
Do Black Golden Retrievers really exist? Aren’t Golden Retrievers supposed to be, well… Golden?

In this guide, you’ll learn:

  • What black Golden Retrievers are actually called
  • How Black golden retrievers compare to golden retrievers
  • How much a black golden retriever will cost to buy
  • Where to buy a black Golden Retriever 
  • And much more!
What's In This Guide?

      What are Black Golden Retrievers?

      The Black Golden Retriever is a creature similar to the Loch Ness monster and chupacabra. Many people swear this canine breed exists simply because they do not wholly understand what they see. A similar problem exists with the “English Cream Golden Retriever.”

      Moreover, the so-called Black Golden Retriever is not recognized by the American Kennel Club. A purebred Golden Retriever can’t have solid black fur because its golden coat is the result of two recessive “E” alleles.

      How does a Golden Retrievers coat become the color black?

      Melanocytes are cells found in the hair follicles and bottom layer of the epidermis. These cells are responsible for producing melanin that determines the color of the skin, hair, and eyes.

      Despite the huge range of coat colors and markings, there are only 2 pigments that determine the color of canines: eumelanin and pheomelanin.

      Full-strength eumelanin is black, while pheomelanin is red by default. Genes manipulate the intensity of the pigments. Thereby, diluted eumelanin can create other colors such as liver, grey, and pale brown.

      Pheomelanin, on the other hand, can range from red mahogany to copper, gold, cream, or tan.

      Eight genes dictate the coat colors in dogs, and the Golden Retriever has the recessive “e/e” genotype. As such, a purebred Golden Retriever will always be a shade of gold, copper, or cream.

      Although rarely, a pigment somatic mutation can occur, which manifests as a black splotch on the face.

      How Much Do Black Golden Retrievers Cost?

      A purebred Golden Retriever and purebred Black Golden Retriever ranges between $500 to $2,000. 

      Puppies priced at the lower end of the spectrum may be dogs coming from a backyard breeder or pet store without proper documentation. If you wish to ensure excellent bloodlines, expect to shell out between $2, 000 to $3, 000.

      However, you don’t have to break the bank to have these dogs in your life. Adoption fees for both breeds through shelter costs only $300 or less.

      Where Can You Buy A Black Or Flat-Coated Golden Retrievers?

      Here is a list of where to buy black colored golden retrievers (i.e. flat-coated retrievers):

      What Are The Differences Between Black Golden Retrievers And Golden Retrievers?

      Apart from the coat color, the Golden Retriever and Flat-Coated Retriever, a.k.a “Black Golden,” have a few other differences. Without further ado, let me compare these gorgeous canines, so you can get a feel on which breed works best as your furry pal.


      As the name suggests, Golden Retrievers have double coats that range in the shade of red mahogany, gold, and cream. The AKC says nothing about being black. On the other hand, Flat-Coated Retrievers have a lustrous moderate-length coat that is either black or liver and lies eponymously flat.

      Both breeds have long plumes at the legs, tail, underbelly, and around the ears. The Black Retriever has a longer head and snout compared to the Golden Retriever. Other than that, these canines look similar as they both project a smart, kind, and happy expression.

      How Big Do black Retrievers Grow?

      The Golden Retriever features a sturdy and muscular built. In general, a male Golden stands between 23 to 24 inches tall and weighs between 65 to 75 pounds. Females are generally shorter and lighter. The average female Golden is 21.5 to 22.5 inches tall and weighs between 55 to 65 pounds.

      Flat-Coated Retrievers are similar to Golden Retrievers in terms of structure and weight. However, these so-called Black Goldens feature a leaner and more elegant silhouette.

      Temperament & Behavior

      Perhaps the most lovable qualities amongst all Retrievers are their innocence and childlike love for their humans. As such, these cheerful dogs will do well with any loving pet parent. Both breeds are also tolerant of young children and other pets.

      Due to their hunting roots, these playful gun dogs may like chasing and fetching a little too much. But rest assured neither breed is aggressive with people or animals because they are too friendly to boot. The only downside is that neither of them would make an ideal watchdog or guard dog. I won’t be surprised if they would greet a burglar and give him a house tour!

      On the bright side, Goldens and Black Retrievers make ideal companions for the adventurous owner or laidback pet parent. Whatever lifestyle you have, adopting any of these wonderful breeds is a positive idea because they just want to be on your side all the time.

      If there are a few things that make the Flat-Coat Retriever a little different from his cousin, it has to be his rambunctious side and love for courting trouble. The AKC considers the Flat-Coat Retriever as the canine counterpart of Peter Pan. But in my opinion, he is the canine Loki, Doggo God of Mischief!

      Some pet parents say their Black Goldens never seem to grow up at all, retaining their impish traits into old age.


      With tender loving care, your Golden Retriever pup can live up to 12 years. But as with any purebred dog, he will become vulnerable to diseases as he ages. Commonly seen issues among this dog breed include: skin allergies, cataracts, heart disease, hip and elbow dysplasia, luxating patella, hypothyroidism, and progressive retinal atrophy.

      However, the number one cause of death in Golden Retrievers remains to be cancer. According to CBS News, Over 60% of Golden Retrievers in the USA develop cancer by the time they are five years old and older.

      Flat-Coated Retrievers are also plagued by hip dysplasia and luxating patella as they grow older. But in general, these dogs have fewer health risks compared to their cousins. The only caveat is that they have short lifespans. Flat-Coats may live up to 14 years, but many of them cross the Rainbow Bridge by the age of eight.


      Golden Retrievers and Flat-Coated Retrievers shed quite a bit all year round, and they molt profusely during the spring and fall. The best way to prevent loose hair from getting onto carpets and furniture is to brush your pooch for at least 5 to 10 minutes a day.

      Fortunately, you do not need a plethora of grooming tools. A bristle brush, slicker, and a metal comb are enough to make grooming sessions easy.

      Since these dogs have dense featherings at the legs, tail, underbelly, and around the ears, a regular check for tangles is essential. Goldens and Flat-Coated breeds do not need a haircut, however, a professional trim is recommended for maintenance.

      Frequently Asked Questions

      Do Black Retrievers have black skin?

      Golden Retrievers have pinkish skin but unfortunately, they are prone to allergies and skin disorders that may darken the skin.

      Can Two purebred Golden Retrievers have black puppies?

      It is impossible for two purebred Golden Retrievers to have black pups because they do not have the dominant “E” allele which is the gene required to make them black. 

      Final Thought 0n Black Golden Retrievers

      The “Black Golden Retriever” can only be as realistic as the Pink Unicorn. While genetic mutations are plausible, two purebred Golden Retrievers can’t produce a pup with a solid black coat. 

      What do you may have seen in the street or social media could be a Lab Golden Retriever mix or a different breed, such as the Flat-Coated Retriever. The latter is not as popular as the Golden Retriever, but still loving and playful dogs nonetheless.

      Flat-Coated Retrievers are fantastic family dogs. These playful and affectionate canines behave towards their humans as kids do. If you are looking for a black furbaby check out our list of where to buy above! 

      Picture of Lara Writes

      Lara Writes

      Lara, a.k.a Alpha Mama, is a great dancer and belter singer, although the world tells her otherwise. However, her greatest pleasure is working with animals. If the Alpha Mama is not being delusional, she manages to create informative articles and clear-cut buying guides. She also likes to share her personal experiences that may ignite your soul or possibly change your life!

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