Do Golden Retrievers Point With Their Paws?


In the past century, many children were told it was rude to point, which is ridiculous, as signifying a finger or extending the arm can provide valuable assistance with directions. Today, it’s not frowned upon, and not only do people do it to include those who may be deaf or hard of hearing, but animals can point too, especially if you frequently see a dog pointing. As an owner, you may wonder, ”Do golden retrievers point?” It can seem quite adorable for a dog, but they do it purposefully. In comparison, you may know that certain dog breeds are quite intelligent and are already born knowing this “sign language” that they can also train to do it.


Commonly, a pointing dog does so by freezing his body, often with one front paw up and aiming his nose at a particular spot. He will do this to bring attention to what the dog points out and notify his pet parent of where to look. Although many people associate this behavior with dogs historically bred for hunting, other breeds can and will point.

A non-hunting breed of dogs may do it as they may have been trained since puppies to do this. You may see your puppy pointing by stopping on a path, sniffing the air, lifting one foot, and bending its arm to indicate paw.


Pointing breeds aren’t the only dogs who stop in their tracks and lift a paw when they see a bird, squirrel, or rabbit. That is the pointer stance or a dog pointer pose. Other breeds or mixed breeds were driven by a need to spot moving objects showing a variation on the traditional point.

The dog breeds that point include Spaniels, retrievers, and setters. If you have noticed that your dog likes to point at things, his breed may be more naturally inclined to do this action. Notably, the pointing breeds have a unique mix of independent thinking and collaborative attitude. Y


We still ask the critical question, do golden retrievers point? Commonly, no, they don’t. Golden Retrievers are bred to flush upland game, but not through pointing. It is rare to capture a golden retriever pointing. They don’t typically find the prey and then freeze into position and stare at it. In the extension of the breeds used creating the Golden Retriever, you’ll get a pointing golden retriever once in a while. Even from the same litter, there isn’t any way to predict which dogs will point.


Everyone wants to be the best possible pet parent. It is not ordinarily impossible to train a golden retriever pointing, yet it is not typical behavior for them and may require a significant effort. While it’s not a requirement to get your Golden Retriever to understand pointing, adding this training to your daily routine can be a fun activity to enjoy.




You don’t have to make your dog a hunter to enjoy the benefits of natural dog instincts. Just like you’d provide a mouse toy to your pet cat so they can play-hunt inside your house, you can offer your dog some fun and build your golden retriever traits.

This play activity is a healthy and natural way for you and your dog to learn to communicate. You can train them to find prey outdoors but not have them run for it, nor do you have to hunt it yourself. You can simply release your dog from its pointing position, praise them, and continue walking.

And if you regularly go out for walks in the wild with your dog, your dog can also provide a valuable warning for you in the event that there is a bear, coyote, wild cat, or other possible harmful creature out there that can hurt you. Your dog could save your life by warning you!


Golden retrievers are among the easiest breeds to train. However, naturally, golden retrievers are not pointer dogs. Therefore, even if golden retrievers are typically easy to train, they may take time to train on how to point. You may not be able to train your dog to the stance, or they may hold the golden retriever pointing stance for a few seconds but not freeze.

To train your golden retriever to point, you should consider the following tips:

  1. Starting with basic obedience training
  2. Introducing your dog to birds in a controlled environment
  3. Using a pointing stick to teach your dog to associate birds with a specific location
  4. Teaching your dog to freeze in place when they detect the scent of a bird
  5. Reinforcing the behavior with positive reinforcement
  6. Practicing in the field under controlled circumstances.

It may be complex training and, therefore, may need help from a professional trainer to succeed. Once thriving, your golden retriever will point like a hunting dog points.







Your golden retriever will build up more instincts, and obedience will be added to the platter. You can also introduce hunting around the neighborhood or estate for your pet and yourself, and you won’t be wondering why your dog lifts one paw when hunting. It works miracles as the pets grow stronger physically and mentally and avoids some health-related issues. It will also expand your relationship as a pet parent and your pet by noting your golden retriever’s characteristics. After all, you will always have a smile on your face and a feeling of achieved responsibility. With that note, we can comfortably be the best pet parents, having answered the question, “do golden retrievers point?”.



Q1. How can I tell if my golden retriever is pointing

A1. It is possible to tell if your Golden Retriever is pointing by observing their body language, such as freezing in place, focusing on a specific target, and holding their head and tail up high.

Q2. Is it common for golden retrievers to point with their toes?

A2. No, it is not common for Golden Retrievers to point with their toes as they are not a pointing breed. So don’t wonder why your dog point out.




Q3. Do all dog breeds point with their toes?

A3. No, not all dog breeds point with their toes. Some dogs, such as the Vizsla or Pointer, have a more distinct pointing posture with a lifted front paw, while others, like the Golden Retriever, may have a less noticeable pointing behavior.

Q4. Are golden retrievers good at pointing?

A4. Golden Retrievers are bred to flush the upland game. Golden Retrievers that point are rare.

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