Celebrating National Golden Retriever Day? Yeah, around here, we call that Thursday.
Golden Retriever on hospital bed with young girl, dog is wearing crown
Credit: Courtesy Canines for Coping

Few dogs are as loyal, kind, and patient as golden retrievers. They're the quintessential family pooch who's never met a stranger—qualities that consistently keep them on the top 5 list of most popular dog breeds in the U.S. The Golden Retriever Club of America indicates they first premiered in dog shows around 1906. More than a century of love for this dog hardly seems like enough.

So it's no surprise that among the numerous annual pet holidays is Feb. 3: National Golden Retriever Day. (Which is also National Doggie Date Night. Coincidence? I don't think so!) Not every breed earns a holiday, but they're so doggone lovable that we have to agree with the honor. Break out the treats and toys because we've pulled together a few (there are so many!) of our favorite golden retriever stories to celebrate these truly amazing pups.

Charlie Zones Out on Dug Days

dog reacts to dog cartoon near sofa
Credit: Courtesy of charliethegoldensmom / TikTok

Our doggos love snuggling on the couch and watching TV with us, but how often is the programming just for them? In this TikTok, Charlie was so focused on catching up with the exploits of his Pixar cartoon doggie pal from Dug Days that he doesn't even respond to his mom. She could have said "Treat?" and he wouldn't have cared (much).

puppies playing together on a swing
Credit: Courtesy of caligoldenretrievers / TikTok

There's a swing! Puppies get on it! Cuteness a'splodes everywhere. You have to see it!

Brave Ping An Returns Home

golden retriever looking up at the camera sitting in grass
Credit: Smartshots International / Getty

When her family temporarily rehomed her with a friend as they finished a home renovation, Ping An—which translates to "safe" in English—used her memory of the car ride as a compass to get back to the people she loved. Unbelievable.

Lucy the Golden Meets Wee Kitty Joey

dog meets kitten tiktok
Credit: Courtesy of katiesquibb / TikTok

Of course dogs and cats get along, especially when they're properly introduced. But Lucy's gentle approach and curious concern about teeny Joey in this TikTok is a lesson in pure altruism. She definitely has methods that could benefit all of humanity.

If That's Not Enough, Watch Tucker Meet His Son, Todd

Golden Retriever dad meets his son on TikTok
Credit: Courtesy of tuckerbudzyn / TikTok

And then there's Tucker. We dare say no dad, creature or human, has ever been more thrilled over his progeny. Just watch!

Fierce Golden Mom Saves the Day

happy golden retriever
Credit: Mike Ko / EyeEm / Getty

Brandy, an 8-month-old golden retriever puppy, went exploring in the woods and wandered into a difficult situation. It was her intrepid mom Bailey who followed her scent and led rescuers to help save her. So many joyful kisses were shared that day! 

Golden Retriever and Dolphin BFFs? Sure!

dog looks at dolphin in water
Credit: SValeriia/Getty

When the photo of Gunner giving Delta a happy hello lick went viral, the internet went bonkers. They first met at the Dolphin Research Center in Miami when Gunner, only a few weeks old, made the rounds with his human, a dolphin trainer. This unlikely friendship between paws and fins has only grown stronger in the past decade.

Surf's Up for This Golden Pup

Ricochet on surf board
Credit: Courtesy of Judy Fridono

Demonstrating the healing power of water to adaptive surfers is Ricochet, quite a well-balanced doggo, offering love and encouragement. See her in action!

No Foot? No Paw? No Problem!

golden retriever puppy lying in the grass
Credit: Brenna Bagley / EyeEm / Getty

Then there's the beyond heartwarming story of young squire Paxton, who had a foot amputated because of an infection, and golden Marvel, born without a paw, and their truly marvelous pairing. Here, take my tissues.

Superstar Therapy Dogs Make Kids Feel Better

Golden Retriever on hospital bed with young girl, dog is wearing crown
Credit: Courtesy Canines for Coping

Astroid and Orbit are a golden retriever sibling dynamic duo who make the rounds at Huntsville Hospital in Alabama. They represent the Canines for Coping program, which helps pediatric patients and their families deal with their hospital experience in a more therapeutic way—and hardworking healthcare workers benefit from fuzzy hugs, belly rubs, and ear scritches, too.

MORE: 3 Cheers for Astroid and Orbit, Helping Hospital Staff and Patients Heal

The Opera-Singing Golden

Yellow lab retriever stares up at TV with Christmas tree in background
Credit: Courtesy of BestDogsLifeUK

Few moments in life are as enjoyable as when that invisible line between human and canine is crossed, and suddenly we realize dogs are just like us! Hugo's unleashed joy of opera has no bounds, and in these videos, he shares his bark-i-tone in harmony with the professionals. In a word: adorable.

Golden Retriever Lil' Bunny Cuddle Puddle

Adult yellow lab retriever nestles baby bunnies
Credit: Courtesy of This is Bailey / YouTube

There's nothing I can say here that will do this video justice, only that it's one of the hundreds of reasons why goldens have a national day—and why all humans need to be more like them.