Golden Retrievers are lovable family dogs. They love staying indoors with their human family. However, as Goldens are medium-large sized dogs, maintaining good hygiene for these big boys/girls is important. Thus, it makes you wonder whether these dogs usually smell bad and make the house also stinky.
Normally, Golden Retrievers are not foul-smelling dogs but they surely can be odorous and make your house smell due to their double coats that produce a smelly water-repellant oil and wooly-long hair that can absorb outdoor smells such as from mud and water. Moreover, Yeast and Bacterial infections, bad diet and poor grooming can also cause unpleasant odors.
As much as you love your Golden, you also do not want it to be smelly or make the house stinky. So, determining what causes your dog’s odor is essential to prevent it or at least keep it at bay.
Nevertheless, keep in mind that all dogs usually give off a natural scent “Doggy Smell” and it is normal and can not be prevented. Unless, it is a very unpleasant smell, a mild scent should not be an issue.
In this post, I will explain to you about the possible reasons for the bad odor coming from your Golden Retriever along with what to do to stop it and ensure your dog will smell good.
Here is why your Golden has a stinky odor to spread it in the house
01 – Coats soaking up the smells of outdoor Substances
As I said, Golden Retrievers have two coats, undercoat and topcoat. Naturally, Goldens produce oil from glands in the skin to keep the coats healthy and protected such as the water-repellant oil.
Sometimes, these oils can be really smelly but on top of that, the long hair can soak up different odors from smelly substances found outside such as mud, grass, dirt and other smelly objects.
Moreover, Golden Retrievers inherently love water. So, if your Retriever gets its fur wet, surely, it will result in an instantly-unpleasant odor until the coats are dry again. That is why if you let the dog inside the house, it will spread that distinct and stinky smell everywhere in the house.
Therefore, if your Goldie ever played in the pool, rain water or rolled on any dirt, bath it first before letting in.
02 – Ear infection
A Golden Retriever can experience ear and skin infections due to varies types of bacteria and yeast.
But more commonly, yeast infections can cause a bad odor in Golden Retrievers. This infection is always associated with smelly ears and paws.
So, along with the smell, if the dog also keeps scratching its ears and paws, it is likely the time that you take your Golden to the vet’s office.
Not only that, when a Retriever has an ear infection, its skin will produce too much oil from certain glands in the skin to keep up with the excessive amounts of yeast. So, this also can cause a musty smell
But it can get worse as excessive scratching can worsen the infection and lead to more odor.
03 – Skin infection
Skin infections also cause foul-smells. The byproducts of bacterial growth and overgrowth of bacteria itself cause odor in Golden Retrieves. What causes these infections can be many factors such as a flea infestation, a wound or even an allergic reaction.
Just like ear infections, With skin infections too, your Golden Retriever will scratch excessively due to nonstop itching and then, it will lead to a secondary bacterial infection. What all this does is worsening the unpleasant smell.
Pyoderma – A common skin infection that causes a terrible odor, pustules, scales, hair loss and itchiness. Although, the condition sounds scary, it is really not. With treatments, your Golden will be fine and the unpleasant smell will also go away.
Flea and tick infestation – another condition that causes smelly skin infections. The symptoms include bumps, raw-red and wet areas, rashes, hair loss and of course, a musty smell. This condition is usually treated with Oral Tablets.
04 – Inefficient grooming
As you already know, Golden Retrievers are double-coated dogs that have long hair. So, with fluffier coats, there will be more oils in the fur and skin which can cause an odor.
That is why an efficient grooming routine is a must-need to maintain the wooly fur of your Golden. Especially, bathing, brushing and trimming are quite essential and should be done consistently.
You see, if you do not maintain a consistent grooming routine, the thick coats will get longer and dirtier in no time. Then, it leads to bad hygiene and odors.
On top of that, if your Goldie is more active, that means the sweat and outdoor substances such as mud will stain and retain in the the coats. Thus, if you do not adjust the grooming routine to handle the more dirtiness of the dog’s coats, the odor can get even worse.
05 – Poor dietary intakes
A bad diet can cause many problems to any dog breed. As the lack of a good diet can cause severe health issues such as obesity and heart issues, mild conditions such as odor, flatus, burping and bloating can also be obvious results of a bad diet.
So, if your Golden Retriever has a bad-unfit diet, it can cause skin issues and tummy problems which can explain why there is a foul-smell in the house.
You see, a symptom of both skin and tummy issues is an unpleasant odor.
Let me explain one by one,
skin issues due to Allergies:
Your Golden can be allergic to certain foods. So, such allergies can cause inflammation of its skin which then, can result in an over-production of oils.
You already know, with more natural oils, the coats and skin get excessively greasy which means bad odors.
Let’s say, your Golden just had a meal. However, ever since the dog ate, there is a stinky smell. Well, that likely means something in the meal may be causing an allergic reaction.
Stomach issues such as gas or burping can also cause an unpleasant odor. Gas problems can usually be caused by certain ingredients in the foods that your Goldie eats. For example, a Golden Retriever can be intolerant to grain or fish-based foods.
This is also like getting allergies, certain foods only cause this condition.
Therefore, it is best that you consult with the vet and make a change to the dog’s diet. For example, a grain-free or dairy-free diet. Then, see what happens to the unpleasant scent in the house.
06 – Dirty bedding
Have you wondered why the same odor that is coming from your Golden, is also coming from its bed except it is a much stronger smell? Well, it means the time to clean the dog’s bed has come.
Bedding can give off an odor due to the dog’s dander and fur along with other dust and dirt that your Golden Retriever may bring into the bed from all its walks outside.
So, when all that dirt and different smells stay around and in the dog’s bed for too long, it eventually gives off the worse rotten smell.
Even if you clean your Retriever, it will again get the odor from sleeping in its dirty bed.
07 – Dental issues
Bad breath also gives off a distinct odor. When plaque and tartar are built-up in a Golden’s teeth, it could get gum diseases and infections along with an obviously, bad smell.
Due to this plaque buildup on teeth and gums, gum tissues can get enlarged and inflamed. Thus, it can harbor tiny bits and pieces of foods.
So, when food bits get stuck within teeth and gums of a dog, they can rot for days and produce a smelly breath.
Not only that, with a smelly mouth, when your Golden licks its body with spit to clean itself, that bad odor coming from its month will be spread and stained in the coats and everywhere else.
This condition basically occurs when you fail to keep your Goldie’s teeth clean at home while also, providing professional dental cleaning from a vet.
Here is how to prevent your Golden Retriever’s bad odor
01 – Removing the source of the odor
You need to get rid of your Golden’s odor from its source. By source, I mean cleaning the body part that gives off the smell.
The source can be anywhere in the dog’s body, you have to examine and find it but mostly, it can be moist areas of the body
Because the moist areas of a dog’s body build up the most bacteria, skin oils and other natural metabolic secretions.
And those moist parts of a Golden Retriever’s body can be mouth, skin folds, under the tail, nose and ears.
So, such specific areas should be thoroughly cleaned and washed. Also, when you give your dog full and proper baths, focus more on moist areas to make sure they will not produce odors.
Plus, do not forget to use some oatmeal shampoo. It is great to remove all the dirty substances stuck in coats and the other moist areas.
02 – Groom the dog more
Some dogs get dirtier and smellier much sooner than other dogs. If your Golden gets stinky too quickly after having a bath, then the dog needs to be groomed more often.
Every dog is different. Some stay clean without being odorous for days while others need to be cleaned everyday. Start with grooming your Golden 2-3 times a week. Then, if the dog still gets smelly, increase the number of times that grooming is done one by one until you reach daily grooming.
Also, before trimming or brushing the dog, firstly, bath it with a good shampoo like I said above and then, blow dry the coats.
That way, you can remove dead hairs, debris and dirt from your golden’s coats much more efficiently.
03 – Change the Shampoo
You may have been using the same shampoo for your Golden Retriever for a long time because it is a good one that cleans the dog well
But over time, when the dog gets dirtier and more odorous, that same shampoo might not be able to keep up and clean the dirtiness as well as it did before.
Which is why trying out a new shampoo is essential.
You see, certain shampoos can worsen an odor because they dry up your Golden’s skin and make it flaky and smelly. So, shampoos that contain natural substances are good.
04 – Clean its teeth
We think coats are the main source of an odor but that is not true. A Golden’s month also can cause quite a strong smell.
Which is why brushing the dog’s teeth regularly is a MUST.
Cleaning your Golden’s month will not only prevent smelly breath but also, help the dog avoid any gum and month-related diseases and infections.
Normally, brushing a dog’s teeth three times per week is optimal but if the breath gets more odorous, increase that number one by one until you reach daily brushing.
You should use a quality dog toothbrush.
By the way, DO NOT USE a human toothpaste. They are poisonous to dogs. So, choose a dog toothpaste.
05 – Clean the ears
Ears is definitely a common area to build-up odors. So, it is a must to routinely wipe down your Retriever’s ears to make sure such smells and dirt will not turn into a source of a stronger and more rotten of a smell.
Get a set of wipes and clean by wiping down both behind and inside of the dog’s ears.
After wiping, use some cotton balls with warm water to remove all the fungal bacteria or any dirt thoroughly. Then, wipe down both the ears again one more time.
However, make sure the water is not too warm.
06 – Clean and trim the nails
Under the nail is an easy place for substances such as dust, grass, sand or any other dirt to get stuck and built-up.
So, whenever your Golden plays or goes for walks outside, always wash and clean the paws.
Also, trim its nails every time they grow back. That way, no dirt can get inside the nails to build up any bacteria or odors.
07 – Make sure your Retriever eats foods that it can Tolerate
Golden Retrievers need good and balanced nutrients such as high protein, moderate carbohydrates and low fats along with micro-nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and omega-3.
But a bad diet can cause many odorous skin issues and tummy problems along with even more serious health issues.
However, an odor can mainly occur due to allergic reactions and gas issues which can be caused by certain types of foods. You see, some Goldens can be intolerant to specific foods.
Best course of action is to cut that specific food out of the diet and see, if the odor still continues. If it does, then take the dog to the vet.
Also, to find which food is exactly causing an allergy or a gas issue, recall the changes you made to the diet recently such as the new foods you added. Then, remove them from the diet one by one and see when the odor stops.
Nonetheless, the more you get used to feeding your Golden, the more you will understand what foods, it is intolerant to.
08 – Clean the bedding
As I already mentioned previously, bedding can get dirty way faster and produce a much worse smell than the dog itself. It is all because you miss to clean your Golden’s bed regularly.
Therefore, cleaning the dog’s bedding once a week or at least once every two weeks is crucial.
So, wash the bed and sheets with hot water to kill off bacteria and debris. Plus, use a non-toxic detergent that is safe for dogs when washing.
Golden Retrievers could have unpleasant odors but with proper care, you can prevent those bad smells. That way, your house also would not smell so bad.
However, if you are considering getting a Golden Retriever, do not be hesitant to get one because not all Goldens have odors. In fact, most pet-parents that have Retrievers say their dog is not stinky and even if it was, it is not a smell that bad.
Therefore, remember that only some Goldens are odorous, not all.