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Chesapeake Bay Retriever

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The Chesapeake Bay Retriever, also popularly referred to as Chessie, is a breed of dog that originated in the United States of America. The breed belongs to the sporting category which generally makes pleasantly seasoned companions. They were initially used as hunting escorts and family pets.  More recently, Chessies are bred to become retrievers and water dogs. They look a lot like Labrador Retrievers, and their size range from medium to large. They have curly double-coats that usually come in various shades of brown, dead grass or sedge with a few white spots.

Height and Weight

The male Chessies normally have a weight of 75 to 100 lbs., and a height of 23 to 26 in as measured at the withers. Their female counterparts, on the other hand, are smaller. Bitches commonly have a weight of about 70 to 90 lbs., and a height of 21 to 24 in, still, at the withers.


Chesapeake Bay Retrievers are known for their bright and delightful disposition. Some are rather vocal when happy, and some will smile out of joy or submissiveness by showing their front teeth in a unique grin. They are intelligent, affectionate, and protective by nature. When socialized properly, the breed makes admirable family dogs. Aside from that, Chessies love water, and they are alert, courageous, and willing to work. They are observed to be assertive and willful, though can be quite reserved with strangers. Nevertheless, some could be passive at the same time outgoing with other people.

Chesapeake Bay Retriever


Maintaining the Chessie’s coat is easy. Brushing it once a week would be enough. As a matter of fact, giving them a large hound bath is not required unless doing so is absolutely necessary. Shampooing can eliminate the coat of essential oils in their hair and diminish water resistance.

Health Concerns

Members of the Chesapeake Bay Retriever breed have an average lifespan of 10 to 13 years. Some of the dog health problems that they are likely to suffer include some bone and joint complications, and canine cataracts. Chessies are also likely to suffer from chronic heart disease, and gastric torsion.

Best Environment

Living in an apartment is not an option for this sporting breed. Chessies perform better when situated in spacious homes that have access to fenced yards, and if possible, to body of water. In fact, a house near the sea or lake is paradise for this energetic breed. Nevertheless, homeowners have to tuck away their things indoors for Chessies have this nasty chewing habit that can make a terrible mess out of your favorite belongings. Moreover, daily exercise is necessary for a large active dog like the Chesapeake Bay Retriever. A good routine of mental and physical activities will make sure that they stay well-tempered at home. Some of the ideal stimulating pursuits for domesticated Chessies include long walks and swimming.

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