Best Treats For Golden Retrievers

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If you’re the lucky owner of a Golden Retriever, you know all too well just how much they love to please you! This breed will do pretty much anything to make you happy, and they will definitely do anything for a treat!

Are you wondering what the best treats for Golden Retrievers are? Stick around because I’ve compiled a list of treats that are safe, healthy, and of course tasty for your Golden Retriever.

Should You Give Your Golden Retriever A Treat?

Of course, you should! All dogs love to get a treat!

Golden Retrievers especially are very motivated by food, which is why training them is so much easier when treats are involved.

I couldn’t imagine going for my daily walks with my Golden Retriever Ellie without treats! Treats are the only way to get her to move sometimes!

When she gets stubborn and wants to eat something off the ground that is bad for her, or when she decides she wants to go another direction and just sits there, I need to use treats!

Not all treats are created equal, and some are complete junk and unhealthy, those types of treats should be avoided.

However, healthy treats that are low in fat and calories with real ingredients are safe and good to give your Golden.

Use Treats In Moderation

Best Treats For Golden Retrievers - Golden Retriever puppy laying on the floor looking up.

We’ve all been there, your sweet Golden Retriever looks at you with those big brown puppy dog eyes, just begging you for one more treat!

It is so easy to give in and overtreat your Golden Retriever, but you are doing more harm than good.

Using treats to give your Golden affection is not a good idea.

Golden Retrievers are food-obsessed, they will always be on the hunt for food and will always seem hungry.

Many owners fall into this trap and tend to overtreat their Golden, causing them to become overweight, obese and diabetic.

The treats that you feed your Golden Retriever should be included in the total calories given per day.

It is important to remember that treats add up, no matter how small they are!

90% of your dog’s caloric intake should consist of a high-quality diet, and only 10% should consist of treats.

To read more about the 10 percent rule check out this article from the American Kennel Club.

What To Consider When Choosing The Best Treats For Your Golden Retriever

You certainly want to feed your Golden the very best, to keep them looking and feeling great.

Treats that are filled with sugar and chemical ingredients are going to be detrimental to your dog’s health, not to mention they will make their skin and coat dull and cause excessive shedding!

What you feed your Golden Retriever plays a key role in helping your dog live a longer and healthier life.

Best Treats For Golden Retrievers - Golden Retriever with a dog treat on his nose.

Let’s look at what you need to consider when choosing treats:

Fat & Calories

It is always best to choose treats that are low in fat and calories, especially if you are using treats for training, as you will be using more of them.


When it comes to ingredients, the fewer there are the better! Also, if you can’t pronounce any of them it’s best to avoid them.

Some of the best treats consist of only one ingredient. We’ll get to them later.

Avoid Filler Ingredients

Soy, wheat and corn are often found in commercial dog treats and should be avoided. They offer no nutritional value to your dog whatsoever.

Meat By-Products & Meat Meal

Many commercial treats use meat By-products and meat meal as their ingredients because they are cheaper than real meat.

These ingredients are unfit for human consumption and should be avoided for your Golden Retriever too.

Sugar & Artificial Sweeteners

It’s a good idea to stay away from any treats that have sugar in them, as sugar can lead to obesity and diabetes.

If you see corn syrup on the ingredient list, avoid it at all costs! Corn syrup is a cheap sweetener that is bad for our health and your dog’s too.

Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that is very toxic to dogs, it can cause liver failure, seizures, and death.

Artificial Preservatives & Dyes

Many commercial dog treats use artificial dyes to make them visually appealing, but anything artificial is bad for your dog and should be avoided.

Artificial preservatives such as BHT and BHA are used to give food longer shelf life, both are banned in some countries but approved for use in food in small quantities in Canada, the USA, and Europe.

BHT and BHA are known to be carcinogenic in animals and may be linked to cancer in humans too.

Type Of Treat

There is a variety of treats available to choose from, popular choices include soft treats, cookies/biscuits, freeze-dried treats, and chewing treats.

Having a variety is good, and you can use treats for different things.

Small treats or soft treats are great for training, and longer-lasting chew treats are great for when you need your dog to enjoy time alone in his crate.


Many dogs have allergies to certain food ingredients, the most common allergies are to chicken and beef, but it takes a bit of trial and error to find out what your dog is allergic to.

Treats that have limited ingredients or only one ingredient are best for dogs with food sensitivities.

10 Best Treats For Golden Retrievers

The following list of dog treats are all made in the USA and do not contain any bad ingredients. They are all-natural, safe and healthy to give your Golden Retriever.

1. Nudges Natural Dog Treats Jerky Cuts

[soft & chewy]

Bag of Nudges Natural Dog Treats Jerky Cuts Real Chicken.
  • Made in the USA.
  • Real USA-sourced chicken is the number 1 ingredient.
  • Slow oven-dried jerky cuts.
  • Easy to tear into smaller pieces.
  • No artificial flavours, no preservatives, & no animal By-products.
  • No corn, wheat or soy.
  • All-natural.
  • Contains glucosamine & chondroitin to support bone & joint health.
  • 36-ounce resealable package.
  • Also available in beef or duck.

These jerky cuts are soft and chewy and your Golden Retriever will find them irresistible.

As soon as you open this bag of treats I’m sure your Golden will be right beside you drooling from that savoury delicious smell.

You can either give them whole or break off bite-sized pieces to use for training. These treats are healthy and natural and are completely made in the USA.

The added glucosamine and chondroitin will help support your Golden’s bone and joint health.

There are 3 delicious flavours to choose from, and real All-American meat of the highest quality is the first ingredient.

These treats do contain sugar, but it is listed further down the list.

You’re going to find that sugar is a common ingredient in most treats and it is sometimes unavoidable. However, when given in moderation these treats are completely safe and healthy.

Dogs go nuts for these treats! They are high-quality and delicious. They smell and feel just like real jerky.

The bag that they come in seals in freshness with a ziplock-style closure.

Some reviews mention these treats are a bit pricey, but the quality makes it worth the price. They can easily be broken into little pieces to make them last longer.

2. Downtown Pet Supply All Natural Beef Tendons

[long-lasting chew]

Bag of Downtown Pet Supply all natural beef tendons.
  • Made in the USA.
  • Premium sourced from free-range, all-natural beef from the Midwest.
  • FDA & USDA approved.
  • All-natural single ingredient treat, beef tendon.
  • No preservatives, hormones or chemicals.
  • Long-lasting chew treat.
  • 9-12″ long tendons available in a 5 pack, 10 pack or 25 pack.
  • Low odour.

These premium dog treats are just one single ingredient, beef tendon.

They are 100% natural protein and are a great alternative to rawhide chews and high-fat treats. You can feel good giving your Golden something that is tasty and healthy.

There are no preservatives, hormones or chemicals. These beef tendons are hand-inspected and packaged in the USA and are FDA & USDA-approved.

They are a longer-lasting treat so your dog can enjoy a good chew while you watch tv., read, or catch up on housework, or if your dog needs to prevent some boredom.

These beef tendons are low in fat, and they are high in protein and full of vitamins and minerals good for your dog.

A great treat that will help to improve your dog’s joint health, promote healthy skin and hair, and help keep your dog’s teeth and gums clean and strong.

These treats satisfy your Golden’s chewing, and no small pieces break off or splinter, they are safe and fully digestible.

Dogs love these treats because they satisfy their taste buds as well as their need to chew. Owners love these treats for their dogs because they are completely natural.

3. Merrick Oven Baked Dog Treats Grammy’s Pot Pie

[oven-baked & crunchy]

Merrick Oven Baked Dog Treats Grammy's Pot Pie.
  • Made in the USA.
  • All-natural ingredients.
  • Limited ingredients.
  • Grain and gluten-free.
  • No corn, wheat or soy.
  • Made with real chicken, peas and carrots.
  • Oven-baked crunchy and healthy treats.
  • Satisfaction guaranteed.
  • 11-ounce resealable package.

Grammy’s Pot Pie dog biscuits are a crunchy healthy treat for your dog to enjoy. Oats are the number 1 ingredient, followed by real deboned chicken, peas and carrots.

These fun-shaped biscuits are loved by dogs! They only contain 7 simple ingredients and do not contain any corn, wheat or soy.

Merrick Oven Baked Dog Treats are safely made in the USA, with all-natural ingredients. Absolutely no ingredients from China!

Merrick offers a Health Promise, so if your dog doesn’t enjoy these treats you can get your money back.

4. Merrick Power Bites Real Rabbit Dog Treats

[soft & chewy bites]

Merrick Power Bites Real Rabbit Dog Treats.
  • Made in the USA.
  • All-natural ingredients.
  • Real deboned Rabbit is the number 1 ingredient.
  • Grain and gluten-free, and no sorbic acid.
  • No corn, wheat or soy.
  • Soft and chewy medium-sized treats.
  • Made with real vegetables and fruit.
  • Poultry-free, great for food sensitivities.
  • It contains Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids.
  • Satisfaction guaranteed.
  • 6-ounce resealable package.

These Merrick Power Bites are the perfect treat if your Golden has a food sensitivity to poultry.

The number one ingredient is real deboned Rabbit. Rabbit is considered a great protein alternative to chicken and turkey, and dogs love the taste.

The Rabbit Power Bites are soft and chewy and they are medium-sized star-shaped morsels. An ideal treat to use for training or for rewards.

Made with all-natural ingredients, such as real meat, vegetables and fruit. They have a natural smoke flavour, which smells amazing when you open the bag.

Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids are beneficial to your Golden’s health, as these fatty acids help to maintain healthy skin and coat.

If your dog doesn’t enjoy the taste of these treats, you’ll get your money back. That’s the Merrick health promise.

These treats do contain a tiny bit of brown sugar for added flavour, so it’s best to treat in moderation.

Many treats for dogs are either chicken or beef flavour and finding a treat that doesn’t contain either is hard.

It’s nice to have some Rabbit treats to give your dog a variety, and these treats are especially great for dogs who can’t have beef or chicken due to allergies.

5. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Trail Treats

[soft & moist training treats]

Blue Wilderness Trail Treats Wild Bits Chicken Recipe.
  • Made in the USA.
  • All-natural ingredients.
  • Soft and moist training treats.
  • Available in Chicken, Duck or Salmon.
  • Real meat is the first ingredient.
  • Grain and gluten-free.
  • No corn, wheat or soy.
  • No By-product meals.
  • No artificial flavours, colours, or preservatives.
  • It contains Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids.
  • DHA to support cognitive development in puppies.
  • Available in 4 ounces or 10-ounce resealable pouch.

These treats are soft and moist and the perfect small size for training or rewards. You can feel good knowing you are giving your Golden a healthy and satisfying treat.

Available in 3 flavours, chicken, duck and salmon. Real meat is the first ingredient, followed by all-natural ingredients.

These treats are completely free of anything that is bad for your dog.

The added Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids help to maintain healthy skin and coat, and the DHA is beneficial for a puppy’s cognitive development. These treats are ideal for dogs of all ages.

They have a natural smoke flavour and are lightly sweetened with maple syrup, which is all-natural.

Dogs love these treats, and they are the perfect size for training.

You could even break them in half to make the treats last longer. The hardest part will be trying to decide which flavour to get.

6. Buddy Biscuits Oven Baked Healthy Dog Treats

[limited ingredients, oven-baked & crunchy]

Box of Buddy Biscuits Oven Baked Healthy Dog Treats, Peanut Butter.
  • Baked in the USA.
  • Only 4 ingredients.
  • Fun gingerbread man-shaped treats.
  • Large biscuits, approx 2.5″.
  • Great for dogs of all sizes.
  • No corn, soy, yeast, sugar, or salt.
  • No fillers, artificial flavours or additives.
  • Available in peanut butter, chicken, bacon & cheese, or assorted.

Buddy Biscuits are a favourite among dogs, some even call it crack for dogs! Dogs really go nuts for these treats!

These gingerbread man-shaped biscuits are super fun and adorable, but more importantly delicious.

They are quite large, measuring approximately 2.5 inches, so it is best to give your Golden only one a day. They are also higher in calories, 46 kcals per treat, so moderation is best.

The best thing about these biscuits is that they only contain 4 ingredients. Absolutely no junk or bad ingredients in these treats, not even sugar or salt.

Buddy Biscuits are baked and boxed in the USA, and they are available in various mouth-watering flavours your dog will love.

7. Wholesome Pride Sweet Potato Chews

[tough & chewy]

Bag of Wholesome Pride Sweet Potato Chews.
  • Made in the USA, sourced directly from U.S. farmers.
  • Single-ingredient chew treat.
  • Made with whole fresh sweet potatoes.
  • All-natural.
  • High in fibre, rich in beta carotene, vitamins and minerals.
  • No additives, preservatives, or colours.
  • Tough and chewy texture.
  • Low-fat.
  • Great for all dogs.
  • Available in a 16-ounce resealable bag.

Sweet Potato Chews are my Golden Retriever Ellie’s favourite treat! She majorly drools over these. They are a healthy treat made from only one ingredient, sweet potatoes.

These treats are dehydrated to preserve the nutrients and have just the right amount of chew to them.

They are a great source of fibre and are rich in beta carotene, vitamins and minerals.

Single-ingredient treats are a great choice for dogs who have food sensitivities, and not every treat has to be a meaty treat.

These sweet potato chews will vary in texture and size, but your dog will still find them drool-worthy.

They are low in fat so you can feel good about giving your Golden this treat.

8. Full Moon Training Treats Organic Chicken


Full Moon Training Treats Organic Chicken.
  • Made and sourced in the USA.
  • Organic cage-free & antibiotic-free USA chicken is the first ingredient.
  • Human-grade & all-natural ingredients.
  • Low-calorie treats, less than 3kcals per treat.
  • Pea-sized treats are ideal for training.
  • No corn, wheat, soy, glycerine or grains.
  • No artificial flavours or preservatives.
  • High-value treats.
  • Great for all dogs.
  • 6-ounce resealable pack.

These tasty treats are the perfect size for training, they are all-natural and low in calories.

One treat has less than 3kcals, which is great for maintaining your dog’s healthy weight.

Dogs absolutely love the smell and taste of these organic chicken treats, and that’s what makes them high value.

They are a great training treat because they will get your dog’s attention and improve his focus.

Full Moon Training Treats are human-grade, which makes them safe enough even for you to eat if you dare!

Completely made in the USA from organic cage-free chicken, these treats will have your dog drooling.

They are made with all-natural and organic ingredients, including natural organic cane sugar to keep these treats soft and chewy.

9. True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts Chicken

[soft & chewy]

Bag of True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts Chicken.
  • Made and sourced in the USA.
  • 100% natural ingredients.
  • Real chicken is the first ingredient.
  • Chicken is raised without hormones or steroids.
  • No corn, wheat or soy.
  • No artificial flavours or preservatives.
  • No Animal By-products.
  • Satisfaction guaranteed.
  • Available in 4 ounces, 12 ounces or 22 ounces.

These jerky treats are made with real chicken that is raised without antibiotics or steroids. They are slow oven-roasted and packed with protein.

True Chews are made with 100% natural ingredients, so you can feel good knowing your dog is getting an all-natural and healthy treat.

True Chews Jerky Cuts are a chewy treat that your dog will drool for and absolutely love. If for some reason your dog doesn’t go crazy for these treats, you get your money back.

They are soft enough for you to tear them into smaller pieces, or let your dog enjoy the whole thing.

These treats are not long-lasting, because of their softness, your dog will have this treat eaten in no time.

Dogs love these treats, and many reviews mention how great they smell!

They are made with wholesome ingredients and are very satisfying to dogs, even dogs who are picky eaters seem to love them.

10. Tickled Pet Fish Skin Twists

[longer-lasting chew]

Tickled Pet Fish Skin Twists.
  • Made in the USA.
  • Single-ingredient treat, just Wild Caught Icelandic Cod.
  • 100% sustainable fish.
  • All-natural.
  • Longer-lasting chew treat.
  • Cleans teeth and maintains healthy gums.
  • Loaded with Omega 3 fatty acids and collagen.
  • Human grade meets FDA guidelines.
  • Low odour.
  • Grain-free, and NO ingredients from China.

These fish skin twists are a great alternative to rawhide, which you should never give your dog! They are also a healthier alternative to other dental chews that contain bad ingredients.

They are a longer-lasting chew treat made with just one ingredient, wild-caught cod from the waters of Iceland.

These treats are loaded with Omega 3 fatty acids and collagen to help maintain your dog’s healthy skin and coat, and they are high in protein.

100% all-natural good-for-you treats, they meet the FDA requirements to be classed as human-grade, so if you wanted to try them you could!

The fish skins are air-dried and hand-rolled into nice thick chews that take your dog a while to eat.

Great for cleaning your dog’s teeth and maintaining healthy gums.

The twists vary in length but are approximately 4″ long. They have a low odour as well, they still smell like fish, but fresh fish and not a rancid fish smell that some fish treats have.

Dogs go crazy for these treats, and while they’re not the longest-lasting treats, they certainly satisfy your dog’s chewing for a few minutes.

Other Non-Commercial Healthy Treats To Consider

Not all treats that you give your dog have to be commercially made. You can make your own healthy treats at home for your dog, as well as give your dog wholesome fresh fruits and veggies.

Here are some great treats to give your Golden Retriever, in moderation of course:

  • Apple slices.
  • Carrots.
  • Green beans.
  • Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries & raspberries.
  • Watermelon.
  • Cantaloupe.
  • Broccoli.

You could even get yourself a dehydrator and make your own dehydrated treats. This will save you money in the long run.

Final Thoughts

The best treats for Golden Retrievers should be made with all-natural ingredients, be low in calories and fat, they should be healthy and of course, satisfy your Golden Retriever’s taste buds.

The best treats are usually the ones that only contain one ingredient. It makes it easier to keep track of what you are putting into your Goldens mouth, especially when you are dealing with food sensitivities which many dogs have.

All of the treats listed above are healthy choices for your Golden Retriever, with many of them being ideal for training purposes.

If you own a Golden Retriever puppy, be sure to check out more treat ideas in my latest article, healthy dog treats for puppies.

Does your Golden Retriever have a favourite treat? Or, does your Golden Retriever eat everything? Share your thoughts and comments below. I would love to hear from you.

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8 thoughts on “Best Treats For Golden Retrievers”

  1. This is so awesome! Thank you for sharing the best treats for Golden Retrievers. I think more so the best treats for dogs in general.

    I have a Pomeranian Shih Tzu and we give him treats. There are 2 on your list that we have: Blue Buffalo Wilderness Trail Treats AND Merrick Power Bites Real Rabbit Dog Treats!

    He absolutely loves them. Usually, we give treats before we leave the house and after a good walk or training!

    • Hi Lorenz,

      Yes, these treats are the best for all dogs, because they are healthy and made using all-natural ingredients.

      I’m so glad your dog enjoys his treats.  I use the Merrick Power Bites as well, the Rabbit ones and my Ellie loves them too!  It’s so challenging to find treats that don’t contain certain ingredients, in my case free from chicken and beef, as my dog is allergic to both.  The Rabbit treats are a great option.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.


  2. I hate dog treats that are loaded with sugar. I don’t know why some companies go this route. It’s totally unnecessary and I’m glad you put a warning about that in this article. The Grammy’s Pot Pie dog treats look good and I hadn’t heard of them before. I think I might give those a try. 

    • Hi Alicia,

      Yes, so many companies put sugar and other bad stuff in dog treats, you really need to look hard for ones that don’t have anything bad in them.  But, this list of treats are all healthy, some still have a small amount of sugar in them, however, the ingredient is listed further down.

      The Grammy’s Pot Pie ones are a great choice, containing all-natural ingredients that are simple and that you can actually pronounce.  I’m sure your dog will enjoy them.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.


  3. Hello –
    What is the best bone to give to my English cream golden that will be long-lasting? Antlers – deer/elk/moose I heard one time. Need to know what’s best for my fur baby. Any insight would be helpful. Thank you.

    • Hi Susan,
      Thanks for asking this great question. I do not have any experience with antlers, I have never given my dog an antler to chew on. I am a bit hesitant to recommend antlers to you because I have heard many things about them. A lot of dogs have chipped or broken their teeth on antlers because they are extremely hard, and they should NEVER be given to a puppy! The last thing you want is for your dog to break his/her teeth, not only is it traumatic, but I imagine it is a very expensive fix!

      Many people love to give their dog Bully Sticks (Pizzle Sticks), they are a great long-lasting chew for your dog to safely enjoy.
      Other great long-lasting chews are duck necks & duck feet, these are chewy and long-lasting and they are also safe for puppies.
      You can also give raw bones to your dog, but never give chicken bones as they can splinter and are dangerous! Beef bones are a good choice, but just be aware that they can sometimes have a lot of fat on them and be too rich for your dog, resulting in diarrhea or stomach upset.

      There are many options for long-lasting chews and bones for your dog. I give my dog Ellie a raw lamb femur bone, it usually takes her 20-30 minutes to chew. I give lamb because she is allergic to beef. She also enjoys chewing on rabbit feet, they are great for the digestive system, although they don’t take long to chew.

      Other options are nylon bones, rope toys, or rubber chew toys. Giving your dog something healthy and tasty to chew on will satisfy your dog’s urge to chew as well as promote good oral hygiene!

      I hope this helps you and gives you some options, if you have any more questions please ask!
      Take care,

  4. It is true that Golden Retrievers seem to have a tendency to easily get overweight. I have no Golden Retriever, but I have seen several fat ones 😉 I like treats with natural ingredients, and my favourite here is the sweet potato one, it has only one ingredient, and my dogs will love it, I know 😉 I also give them carrot pieces sometimes and they just eat it all. The fish skin rolls also look good, and just like the sweet potato treat they only have one ingredient. What is their shelf life approximately? Why should you never give rawhide to your dog? Are they not good? 

    • Hi Christine,

      Natural and healthy dog treats are the way to go!  Dog breeds such as the Golden Retriever are prone to obesity, so feeding them healthy treats will help to maintain their ideal weight.

      Thank you for asking such great questions.  The fish skin rolls are dehydrated which makes their shelf life longer, and they come in a resealable package.  I am sure the package would have an expiry date printed on it to indicate their best before date.  I would say on average dehydrated treats will last longer than 2-3 weeks, possibly a month.  Maybe more, I can’t be certain.  Because they are completely natural and do not contain any preservatives, they would not last as long as other treats that have preservatives.  Keeping them in their sealed package or an airtight container will help keep them longer.  But, given how much dogs love them, they probably won’t last too long.

      In regards to rawhides, they are not good for your dog.  They are toxic!  They are bleached and held together with glue, some rawhides are even coloured to give them a more natural look.  They are extremely dangerous to dogs, causing choking and intestinal blockage.  Dogs break off pieces of rawhide and could choke, and the rawhide is not easily digested.  I advise any dog owner to stay away from them.  There are many safer and healthier alternatives to rawhides!

      Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and comments.



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