Follow our most recent litter on Instagram

Our Breeding Philosophy

Ever had a part of your life you just can’t imagine life without? 

Those are our dogs. I know, that’s what all dog owners say. But when we Southerners put our soul into something, you can bet your biscuits we mean it.

From the moment our family adopted our first golden, Beauregard, we were in love. He was well socialized without ever leaving the home due to the number of kids we always have at our house, but we still enjoyed bringing him to work, to restaurants, to our vacation house at the lake, and on our various adventures fishing and playing at the beach. Since then our family of goldens just keeps growing! We are passionate about the golden retriever breed, and believe in responsible breeding for the purposes of bringing a life full of joy and happy memories to each puppy.

Here’s a few facts about our breeding program that may be of interest to you as you’re making this important decision:

We perform extensive health testing.

We believe in extensive health testing to prevent inheritable diseases and conditions that would shorten or decrease the quality of life in your new puppy. For the golden retriever breed, it’s extremely important to test for Degenerative Myelopathy, prcd‐PRA, GR‐PRA1, GR-PRA 2, Ichthyosis, NCL5, as well as hip, elbow, heart and eye testing through the OFA. We screen for these conditions in our dams and sires through the proper genetic and radiographic testing.

We breed for health & temperament.

We are not a performance or show dog breeder. Instead, we breed for temperaments that make for the best family dogs: gentleness, a balanced energy level, playful, loyal, and observant. We also select parents for conformation to the breed to continue on the traditional look of a golden retriever and for superior health.

We prepare our dogs to become members of your family.

Golden retrievers are exceptional family dogs, and we work diligently in the puppy stage to introduce typical sounds and experiences a dog will have in your home. We play music in the nursery, use a loud vacuum, introduce new toys with interesting textures and sounds, and, my favorite, we snuggle and hold our puppies every day.

We believe in water play from an early age.

As an organization, we believe in water play and know this breed genuinely loves experiencing water in so many different ways. We introduce safe water play to our puppies during bath time so that they can begin making positive connections with water.

We breed for the love of the golden retriever breed.

We do not engage in questionable breeding practices. We only breed when the parents are health-tested, have clean vet checks, and are of an appropriate age.

Southern Water Dogs visits the campus of Assistance Dogs of Hawaii

We love our goldens, but we advocate for ALL dogs and dog lovers.

A portion of our proceeds are reinvested in creating new adventures for all breeds of dogs in the Asheville area, and to support quality dog products that are safe and carefully crafted for water loving dogs. Please take a look at our social media to see how we have turned this philosophy into action.

Our Approach to
Ethical Breeding

Are you convinced?

Or maybe you have a few more questions. We invite you to schedule a time to stop by and see for yourself.