US Olympic Medalists who own, or have owned a Golden Retriever

Tucker and I just watched The Opening Ceremonies of the 2012 Summer Olympics.  I can’t help but have a sense of pride for our Canadian athletes.  I wish them all the best.  Here is a compilation of any known Olympic Medalists who have owned a Golden Retriever at some point  I would like to thank LandofPureGold for your information.  Please let me know of any others, from any country, and I will add them to the collection 🙂

#1.  US Olympic Gold Medalist Tom Dolin  was a gold and silver medalist at the 2000 Summer Olympics and a gold medalist at the 1996 Summer Olympics . He is reported to have had a Golden Retriever named “Cool”.   Where is he now?  He currently operates Tom Dolan’s Swim School.

#2.  Sarah Hughes was an Olympic Gold Medalist for figure skating in 2002.  She has been known for owning a golden retriever named Sport.

Photo: Lionel CIRONNEAU Courtesy

#3.  Shawn Johnson, Olympic Gold Medalist for Balance Beam in 2008, as well as the all around and floor silver medalist.  Here is a picture of her with her Golden Retriever named Tucker!  Shawn will also be competing in this seasons Dancing With The Stars All Stars Season.  Good Luck Shawn!

Shawn Johnson and Tucker Photo from

#4.  Michelle Kwan.  Michelle earned medals in both the 1998 and 2002 Olympics.  According to, she is the most decorated figure skater in US history.Land of Pure Gold reports Michelle had a Golden Retriever named “Traveller”.

Michelle Kwan performs her signature spiral at...
Michelle Kwan performs her signature spiral at a practice session at the 2002 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

#5.  Kristine Lily is a US Gold Medalist for Soccer in 1996 and had a Golden Retriever named Molson.  Wikipedia claims that Kristine is the most capped soccer player in history.

Kristine Lilly – Courtesy Sports Illustrated

#6.  Tara Lipinski won the gold medal in figure skating at the 1998 Winter Olympics at the age of 15. Lipinski is the youngest individual gold medalist in the history of the Olympic Winter Games.  Tara had a Golden Retriever named Brandy.

Tara Lipinski Photo courtesy

#7.  Shannon Miller is a US gold medalist the in the 1996 Olympics balance beam.  She has been known to own a Golden Retriever named Dusty.

Shannon Miller,

#8.  Marla Runyan won four gold medals at the 1992 Summer Paralympics in the long jump and the 100, 200, and 400 meter races.  Her assistance dog was a Golden Retriever named Summer.

#9.  Peter Vidmar  won gold medals in the men’s all-around team competition and the pommel horse competition, and a silver medal in the men’s all-around individual gymnastics competition at the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles.  He owned a Golden Retriever named Thunder.

Peter Vidmar

10.  Steven Holcolm is a gold medalist in Bobsledding, who, according to People,  just so happens to own a Golden Retriever named Bailey.

Steven Holcomb, Baily courtesy

11.  Tyler Hamilton won a gold medal for cycling at the 2004 Olympics.  He had a Golden Retriever named Tugboat who was often at his races.

Hamilton was photographed with Tugboat’s tag around his neck during the 2004 Tour De France

12.  Breeja Larson is an Olympic Gold Medalist in swimming and has a golden retriever named Coooper.


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