Distinguishing Golden Retriever Behavior – Exceptional Ability to Empathize

What distinguishes Golden Retriever behavior from that of almost any other breed I’ve known is the Golden’s uncanny, exceptional ability to empathize. All dogs tune into people, but, from my experience, not with the depth and extent of the Golden. This apparently natural ability to empathize is probably what makes Goldens such superb guide dogs, perhaps the best.

My dog Charlie, my Golden Retriever of fourteen years, whom I’ve written about in my book Charlie: A Love Story, demonstrated this Golden Retriever behavior his whole life and in fact, as he got older, got better and better at it. To the point that, after a while, I forgot he was a dog. He and I had one of the best relationships I’ve ever had, and I think that was due in large part to his wonderful empathetic ability.

Some years ago, when my back was out and I was regularly lying on my back on the floor with my knees up, I could count on Charlie to be right there with me, no matter what was going on in the house or with the three other dogs we had. Sometimes he’d lie on his back just the way I was doing, and if I started laughing, he would seem to get happier.

My other Goldens have had this Golden Retriever behavior, this uncanny ability to empathize, but not like Charlie. It was mainly that ability, along with his determination and character, that inspired me to write about him. To find out more about Charlie: A Love Story, you can click on the following link: charliealovestory.com .