Golden Retriever Vs Basset Hound – What Is The Best Breed For You

While both of these dogs started off as hunting dogs and both have grown to be extremely popular options for family pets, they are quite different. Deciding which of these breeds are the best choice for you personally will depend heavily on personal preference and living arrangements.

Key Similarities

While these dogs are quite obviously not similar in many of their most striking characteristics, their shared history as hunting dogs means that there are some aspects that are shared by Basset Hounds and Golden Retrievers.

Both of these breeds are very sociable and will get along well with other pets and children. Both are intelligent, but the Golden Retriever is considered to be more trainable than the Basset Hound. Finally, neither of these breeds can be tasked with performing the duties of a guard dog, simply because both are generally too friendly towards strangers.

Key Differences

The most obvious difference is their appearance. Golden Retrievers are large dogs with beautiful, flowing, golden coats that require more brushing and tends to shed more than the Basset Hound, who also has a distinct look, with their short, thick coat and low to the ground, long bodies and oversized, drooping ears.

They also have different energy levels and personalities. The Goldies tend to be much more active and excitable which consequently means that they also require more exercise than the generally calm and relaxed Basset Hound.

Pros over each other

While both breeds are obviously terrific, each has certain traits and characteristics that might suit you better.

Basset Hounds shed less than Golden Retrievers and require less grooming, they also don’t need much exercise, whereas Golden Retrievers need a lot of stimulation, both mental and physical.

Golden Retrievers, conversely, are more active and playful than Basset Hounds. They also tend to be much more trainable and obedient. Goldies make excellent emotional support and service animals

Who Should Consider Owning Each One?

If you want a loving and attentive companion and lead an active enough lifestyle to keep up with your Goldie, they are one of the most popular breeds on earth for a reason. They are smart, trainable, affectionate and loyal.

If, however, you would rather spend less time on exercise and grooming and just want a dog that will chill with you, you might get along real well with a Basset Hound.

All About the Golden Retriever

The Golden Retriever came from Scotland and originated in the 1800s. The breed was designed for hunting ducks and waterfowl.

Golden Retrievers are excellent hunting dogs but are wonderful family dogs as well.

Basset Hound Cattle Dog

Originally bred to be a hunting dog, there are still some Basset Hounds working on farms to keep away intruders like rats and rabbits.

Since then they have proven to be excellent family pets as well.


The Spaniel breeds came from Spain and were all sizes and shaped. The types of spaniels were land, water, springer, field spaniels, and Sussex.

All of these spaniels were bred for different hunting duties. The dog’s size was the main point of difference between all these dogs.

The Cocker Spaniel was used to retrieve and flush out small game such as woodcock, pheasant, and quail. In 1946, both the American Cocker Spaniel and the English Cocker Spaniel were recognized officially by the AKC as separate breeds.

Size and appearance:

Cocker Spaniels have incredibly expressive faces and stand out in a crowd. However, their tail keeps wagging, their eyes are dark, and big floppy ears.

Your Cocker Spaniel’s weight will be between 24-28 pounds, with the male being 15 inches at the withers and the female being 14 inches. The head is graceful and round with a broad square muzzle. The ears are feathered long, and the dog’s back slopes towards the tail. There is feathering on the ears and the legs, underside, and chest. Most of the time, the tail is docked.

There are a variety of colors with Cocker Spaniels. The colors can be solid black, tan, or red. Other coats are bi-colored and tri-colored. The coats can be black and white, black and tan, or black and white with tan flecks.

The AKC has the Cocker Spaniel divided into three varieties for show. The divisions are parti-color, black, or ASCOB, which stands for Any Solid Color Other Than Black.


The life expectancy of your Cocker Spaniel is between 14 to 16 years.

Guard dog or family pet?

The guarding instinct is very low in this breed.

You can train them to bark when someone is at the door, but that’s about it. These dogs are friendly, gentle dogs who make great family pets.

First Impressions & History

The Basset Hound is an old breed. They’ve been around for centuries and are believed to be a descendant of the St. Hubert Hound, which is also the ancestor of the modern-day Bloodhound.

Historians believe that they were probably kept, at first, as curiosities due to their unique appearance, but that they later came to be valued for their hunting abilities.

Size & Appearance

Basset Hounds don’t grow to be much larger than 14 inches tall and between 50 and 65 pounds in weight. Their coats are usually a tri-colour mix of white, tan and black but their most recognizable features are their large, droopy ears and long body.

Grooming & Shedding

They have smooth, short hair, evolved for suiting their hunting conditions. So they don’t need much grooming. They shed throughout the year but this is easy enough to manage with regular brushing. Their ears do need to be cleaned relatively often though, as they drag on the ground and are prone to infections.

Basset Hounds are known to drool quite a lot.


10-12 Years

Quick Facts

  • They communicate with their owners using different sounds to indicate different things.
  • The Basset Hound is famous for being the face of the Hush Puppy company
  • In America, there are communities that organize events in honour of Basset Hounds, where Basset Hounds and their owners gather from all over to share in the festivities.

Golden Retrievers In More Detail

Temperament And Behavior:

Golden Retrievers are naturally well-behaved and friendly. Their temperament is playful, gentle, and outgoing. Plus, this breed is intelligent and devoted to its family.

A Golden Retriever gets along with other animals. However, these dogs do exuberant jumps on people when young. Plus, this breed does tend to mouthiness and likes to carry things around.

Training and obedience:

A Golden Retriever has a puppy frame of mind until he is over three years old. Early training is essential so you can instill good manners and calmness.

Even if he is eager to please, your dog will be distracted by the wonderful new sights and smells, so patience is a must.

Exercise Needs:

These dogs are from the sporting class, so they need exercise. If your dog can’t vent his energy and you find him interesting things to do, then he’ll find them. This breed has an extremely high energy level and a high exercise level.

An hour of exercise at least will help keep your dog’s exuberance under control. After that, your dog will love to retrieve stuff and bring back just about anything thrown to him.

Shedding, grooming, and maintenance:

Golden retrievers shed a lot and often. They require regular brushing to keep ahead of the hair shedding.

Because the breed is a hunting and waterfowl dog, the outer coat is dense and will repel water.

You will regularly need to brush and comb your dog to avoid his coat getting matted and tangled. Some dogs of this breed have a medium-length coat that isn’t as hard to groom. Other dogs have a heavier coat with lots of feathering.

Plus, Goldens need to be clipped and scissored occasionally, so a trip to the groomers may be necessary to keep your dog sanitary. Keeping nails trimmed is also a part of the grooming. These dogs shed moderately in the winter and summer but heavily in the spring and fall.

Because this breed has fold-over ears, they are prone to ear infections. The ears create an environment for bacteria and fungus to grow. It appears as black dirt-looking particles with a terrible odor. Simply gently wipe the outer ear with a cotton ball that’s been dampened with pH-balanced ear cleaner.

Health issues:

Golden Retrievers are prone to cancer, heart problems, skin allergies, eye defects. Plus, they gain weight easily, so overfeeding should not be done. In addition, they are susceptible to bloat, hypothyroidism, and hip dysplasia.

Quick Facts:

These dogs have a distinctive doggy odor and produce a lot of dander.

The breed is a good match for children, other dogs, cats, families, and seniors. They are excellent dogs for first-time pet owners, and these dogs love water.

The cost of a Golden Retriever is about $500.

Basset Hounds In More Detail

Temperament & Behaviour

Basset Hounds are generally very calm and only really get excited while hunting. Being a pack animal, the Basset Hound does not enjoy being alone.

They get along well with people and other pets though (except of course if the other pet is small enough to be hunted).

Intelligence Levels & Affections Levels

Basset Hounds are highly intelligent and extremely affectionate. They are gentle with children and other pets but their intelligence can also make them stubborn.

Training & Obedience

Like all dogs, Basset Hounds need to be socialized and trained from an early age. Though Basset Hounds are intelligent enough to understand many commands, they tend to also be quite stubborn and require a patient and capable trainer.

Exercise Needs

Even though they are hunting dogs, Basset Dogs are very chilled when at home. They aren’t active much and would prefer to lie in a comfortable spot for the majority of the time. This, along with their love of food, results in many Basset Hounds becoming obese though, so it is important to make sure that your Basset Hound gets daily exercise, even if it’s just a walk outside, allowing it to explore some smells along the way.

Guard Dog Or Family Pet

Even though they are alert enough to be guard dogs, they aren’t really equipped for security purposes. They are great family pets though.

Gets On With Other Pets, Animals And Children?

Basset Hounds are pack animals and enjoy having company. They are gentle and affectionate with animals and children but it is important to remember that it is their nature to hunt small animals, so pets like rats or gerbils will be prey for them.

Who Should Consider Buiyng

If you have the patience to train your Basset Hound and are willing to continually clean its drool, then a Basset Hound can be a great addition to your family.

Alternatively, if you need someone to keep away small animals, you also won’t find a more capable hunting dog than a Basset Hound.


There is a reason Basset Hounds have been able to remain popular since the 16th century. They are great family dogs and wonderfully adept hunters. Mild-mannered and calm at home and unequivocally effective in the field.

They are loyal, adaptable and affectionate. Their only drawbacks are that they drool quite a lot and are known to be quite difficult to train.

If you are willing to be patient with them and clean up after them they will prove to be excellent pets.