Labrador Retriever




History

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The Labrador was named for the Labrador Sea of of the coast of Newfoundland.  They were bred by fisherman to help them retrieve fish and other objects from the water.  They were not named Newfoundland, because that name was already taken (by the dog that they came from).  The breed eventually found it’s way to England, where it was eventually developed into something that resembles the modern lab.  They are one of the smartest breeds, but they were specifically bred for train-ability purposes.  They want to please their human handler, and will actively work towards that end.  They often have issues with their hips.

What makes a Labrador Retriever Great

The Labrador Retriever is one of the most popular breeds of dog in the United States.  It is a very loyal breed, with a good temperament, and highly intelligent.  These are the factors that make it so desirable.  In fact, they are the number one most desirable dog according to the AKC.  Their careful blend of temperament, intelligence, durability, and capability make them ideal for work as a service dog.  They are often used as such.

AKC Breed Standard

 

Types of Labradors

There are three types of coloring that the AKC accepts as labrador retrievers.  One type of lab can make another one of the types when you attempt to breed them.

  • Yellow Labrador Retriever
  • Chocolate Labrador Retriever
  • Black Labrador Retriever

There are two oddball colors that have not yet gained acceptance by the AKC.  They are almost something of urban legend.  They are both beautiful and interesting.

Temperament

A Labrador Retriever needs a lot of exercise and space to roam.  If you don’t have a yard for them to exercise in, plan on taking them for quite a few walks.  They are very intelligent and will learn tricks with ease.  They usually love everybody (well maybe not the mail carrier), which makes them great companion dogs for the household, but not really the best of guard dogs.  They really enjoy swimming and retrieving for exercise.  If you’ve ever seen a lab by the water for the first time, you’ll be shocked at how quick they are to just jump right in the water.

On a personal note, my wife teaches special education, and absolutely loves the Labrador service dog in here classroom.  He is a good boy and a friend to all children.  When her student is feeling anxiety he just knows.  It’s just amazing to watch.

 

Labrador Care

You’ll need to exercise your Lab on a pretty consistent basis.  A bored dog is usually a mischievous dog.  That is when they will most often find their way into trouble.  They are a shedding breed.  It can be really problematic if you don’t keep on top of it.  You’ll find that brushing them twice a week will usually be enough to keep most of it under control.  There is almost nothing that you can do when they shed in the fall and spring.

Labs aren’t the pickiest eaters.  It is important to make sure that they are getting the best food.