Why Isn’t My Golden retriever Fluffy? 5 Causes and Solution

There is a lot that’s special about Golden Retrievers. They are definitely one of the most beautiful dog breeds inside and outside. But the one thing that makes anyone recognize a golden retriever is their coat. Their long, shiny, fluffy coat that we all adore.

This coat is like their crown, it what makes you tell a golden from a labrador, and there is no other dog breed that has anything quite like it.

But not all coats are alike, and they require a lot of work and attention to stay glamorous and amazing.

Are you looking at your dog and asking why isn’t my golden retriever fluffy? Your golden retriever could be not fluffy because of poor nutrition, dry weather, age, genetics, or because of a health issue that’s affecting their coat and skin. Your Golden Retriever could be not fluffy and still be perfectly healthy, and in most cases, it’s totally fine.

This is the short answer, but some of these causes do have solutions you can follow to help your dog’s coat become fluffy again. Let’s take a look at what may be causing the issues and how you can help it.

Why Aren’t They Fluffy? Causes and Solutions?

Dog laying by the side to illustrate the answers of why isn't my golden retriever fluffy

There are many reasons that can make your golden retriever’s hair look as if it’s not like the other golden retrievers you see around you and on the internet. This is quite normal, and in most cases, it’s nothing to worry about. However, we should still try to figure it out and see how you can solve the problem if there is one. 


If you have a puppy, it’s too early for you to worry about their coats. Now you should simply focus on their training and socialization and forget about their coats as they still have a while to go. 

Here is a brief timeline so you know what to expect: 

Younger than 3 Months of Age:

You will probably not be able to tell your golden retriever from a labrador by this age because their coats have not started grown yet. It’s completely normal and isn’t anything to worry about it for now. 

3 Months of Age till 18 Months 

From the age of 3 months to 18 months, they will start growing their coats. It will start at the tail with some long hairs there that stand out. These are the so-called “feathers” and this is the “feathering” stage of your golden retriever. 

This long hair will start at their tail and then travel up the body, going from their tail to their stomach, legs, till it finally reaches the head. 

That’s when you will also notice their hair changing colors – usually getting darker. You can learn how your golden retriever will change fur color here.

I recommend checking it our as there are a lot more details there than I can discuss here and it will be really useful for you if you have a puppy so you know exactly what is going on with them and why.

After 18 months of Age 

By the time they’re 18 months age, they would have most of their adult coat, but some dogs will take 3 years or more to fully grow their coats.

Other than proper nutrition and care, there is not much you can do to accelerate this process, and just let it take its time.

Be patient and don’t worry if your golden retriever is 3 years and still doesn’t have their “fluffy” coat yet, it may just be a matter of time. 


You golden retriever could have wavy hair because their parents had wavy hair. Or their hair could be denser and/or shorter than normal, leading them to have the same hair which would not be so fluffy. 


If you have gotten your golden retriever from a breeder, check on their parents if you haven’t already. If you find that their coat is growing into one that resembles their parents’, then you have gotten nothing to worry about. 

If your dog is adopted or rescued (good for you), then this may not be an option, but it could still may be the reason and so if you eliminate all the other possible causes, you could have nothing to worry about as well. 


There is no shampoo or hair product that can turn your dog’s hair from wavy to “fluffy”. Please don’t buy into this idea, this is always just marketing mambo jumbo. 

Dry Weather

Do you live in an area where the air is especially dry or has it been a dry season lately where you live? If so, this could be the reason. Dry weather can take a toll on your dog’s skin and hair, and the coat will suffer as a result. 


Simply bringing your dog inside could help greatly with that. Another great idea is to get a humidifier, I use this humidifier from Amazon and I really like it, give it a shot. Of course, you will need to bring your dog to the room where the humidifier is at. 

You can also temporarily increase the frequency of their baths and use high quality shampoos. 

Poor Nutrition 

Good nutrition plays a big role in your dog’s coat health. Dogs’ coat need proteins, fats, and fatty oils to stay healthy. If your dog is not getting the proper nutrients from their food, their coats’ health will be impacted and this can show as excessive shedding, dry hair, dandruff, or even their hair falling off in patches. 

(I have discussed the causes and solutions to each of these problems in the links, make sure to check them out as well). 


Make sure that your dog is getting the proper nutrition for their age, size, and activity levels. You can check the recommended dog foods for golden retrievers at every age here

You should also give them supplements such as Omega-3 supplements that can promote hait growth and help their coats become healthier. Yes, they do actually help. For the exact dosage, I recommend checking with your vet. 

Other Health Issues 

Some health issues can start with symptoms that show on your dog’s skin and coat, which can lead to their coat seeming not quite fluffy. If you eliminate all other causes or your dog is showing other symptoms, even simple ones such as decreased appetite or being in a bad mood that’s quite unlike them, then it could be a health issue that needs checking. 


Take your dog to the vet and have them checked out. In general, I recommend never skipping the regular checkups even if done annually as the vets will be able to catch on health issues before they become serious problems. Some issues can be cured completely quite easily if caught quickly, too. 

Not sure it’s worth a visit to the vet? Call them. Ask them on the phone if it’s something even worth worrying about or if it’s worth a visit. If they do tell you to bring in the dog, you should do that. 

Related Questions

How do I make my golden retriever fluffy? 

To help your golden retriever grow a fluffy and healthy coat, they need proper nutrition, a good grooming routine, and Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.

Natural sources of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids include vegetable oils like Coconut oil, olive oils, and fish oil. Try adding a teaspoon of oil to your dog’s food or give them Omega-3 and supplements. 

Are all golden retrievers fluffy? 

No, not all golden retrievers fluffy. Your golden retriever can have a coat that’s more wavy than fluffy and this is completely normal and is not a cause for concern.

Your golden retriever may also have a coat that’s a bit shorter than their peers so their coat will also appear less “fluffy”, and this is also no cause for concern. 

At the end of the day, all dogs are beautiful in their own way just as they are, they just need good care and attention. 

Do you still have any questions, you can reach to me through the contact page here and I’ll be glad to answer your questions.


Hey there, I'm Matt, the author behind Retrievershub.com. With a deep love for dogs and a dedication to strengthening the bond between owners and their retrievers, I've created a hub of resources for enthusiasts like you. Through engaging articles, training guides, and product reviews, I aim to provide practical advice that makes a real difference in your life as a dog owner. Whether you're a seasoned pro or new to the world of retrievers, my approachable and informative writing style ensures that you'll find valuable insights. Join me on this incredible journey of discovering what makes retrievers tick, unlocking their potential, and creating an unbreakable bond with your furry companion. Let's embark on an adventure of dog ownership together. Thank you for visiting Retrievershub.com and being part of our vibrant community.

Recent Posts