There’s no doubt in the world that Labrador dogs are one of the best companion dogs to have. Labradors are loyal, intelligent, and kind. So if you’re thinking of adding in Labrador puppies to the family, you must also do your homework in knowing what this dog breed can offer. Check out our Labrador dog guide below to get the information you need!
Are Labrador Retrievers Good Dogs?
- Loyal, happy, and very friendly
- Love outdoor activities and play
- Easily trainable when puppies
- Easily bored
There’s absolutely nothing you can hate about Labradors and that makes them one of the ideal pet choices for first-time pet owners. They’re a very loyal, friendly, and happy dog breed, which is just a delight to have around the family. They are people dogs and they love engaging in activities with anyone, even greeting a guest at the door excites them! They love outdoor activities like running, swimming, and playing fetch.
Now since Labrador Retrievers are people dogs, they are also keen on pleasing the people around them. This characteristic lets them be trained without a hitch. However, it is best to start training them as puppies as adult Labs can get rowdy during training. This is simply because they’re full of energy and having to diligently listen through training is a boring thing for them. Moreover, it is a must to teach your Lab commands like “Stay!” “Down!” and other simple obedience commands early on.
The best way to approach training a Lab is to make training appear like play time since they love to play! This way, you will get their full attention and participation.
On the other hand, the only thing you need to worry about is their chewing and mouthing problems, which is fairly common among Labradors. Being highly energetic dogs, they always need something to keep them preoccupied. Give them chew toys so they won’t target your shoes and furniture. Oh! These dogs can also get pretty clumsy when they’re young–another reason to train them as early as puppyhood!
Size & Color:
- Strong and sturdy built
- Athletic and agile body
- Has otter tail and webbed feet
- Black, yellow, chocolate coat
The Lab is a medium-sized dog breed that has a strong and sturdy built. Show dogs possess an athletic and a more agile body, to say the least. The American Kennel Club described the Lab’s appearance as follows:
The Labrador Retriever is a strongly built, medium-sized, short-coupled, dog possessing a sound, athletic, well-balanced conformation that enables it to function as a retrieving gun dog; the substance and soundness to hunt waterfowl or upland game for long hours under difficult conditions; the character and quality to win in the show ring; and the temperament to be a family companion.
A Lab’s appearance is characterized by a broad head, wide muzzle, and pendant ears. Forelegs tend to be straight and solid. The distinguishing feature of the Lab is the “otter” tail and their webbed feet, which is why hunters love using them for retrieving waterfowl.
How big can they get? Male Labs stand between 22.5 to 24.5 inches, while female Labs grow up to 21.5 to 23.5 inches. As for their weight, male Labs weight between 65 to 80 pounds on the average and 55 to 70 pounds for female Labs.
As for the Labs beautiful coat, they sport a short, dense coat that can come in either black, yellow, or chocolate colors. Like the Golden Retrievers, the Labs also have a double coat. The top coats are thick and short, while the undercoat is weather-resistant and soft.
- Requires daily exercise
- Loves to walk, run, play, and swim
- Not ideal for apartments
As mentioned earlier, Labrador Retrievers are highly energetic dogs and will need things to keep them busy. Otherwise, they might play with your shoes instead. Furthermore, Labs need plenty of space to move around with. Houses with backyards are the ideal homes for Labs. They don’t do well in apartment dwellings as they are pretty clumsy and large too.
With so much energy to spare, a Lab will always be up for any physical activity may it be walking or going hiking with you. This dog breed needs daily exercise and would gladly run around to burn off the energy. Let the Lab play with the kids or bring it biking with you; they’ll love chasing you around. Labs also LOVE swimming! The fact is, a Lab needs its daily proper exercise or he will resort to destructive chewing.
Feeding a Labrador:
When feeding a Lab, you can either give him kibble, raw food (BARF), wet food or home-cooked puppy food. To ensure that your dog or puppy gets his nutritional requirements, it’s best to take him to the vet.
Nonetheless, if you want an idea on how much food to give your furry pal, you can use this feeding guide based on your dog’s weight. For a Labrador puppy weighing 15 to 18 pounds, you can give him 7 to 9 ounces of food per day divided into four meals. For puppies weighing, 24 to 26 pounds, you can feed him 9 to 11 ounces of food per day divided into three meals. Labs weighing 50 to 60 pounds, you can feed him 12 to 16 ounces of food per day divided into two meals.
Aren’t Labs so fun to have? It looks like these dogs know how to party!
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Life Span of a Labrador:
How long do labs live on average? Their life span is around 10 to 14 years. As they grow older, they are more vulnerable to these Labrador health problems such as:
- elbow dysplasia
- hip dysplasia
- patellar luxation
- diabetes mellitus
- progressive retinal atrophy
- cranial cruciate ligament rupture insulinoma
- congenital portosystemic shunt
- eneralized/central retinal dysplasia
- Shed year-round
- Daily brush
- Frequent bathing
- Weekly tooth brushing
- Monthly nail trimming
Just like their Golden counterpart, the Labrador sheds all-year-round as well, thus needing regular brushing. They also tend to develop doggie odor quicker than others so frequent bathing is a must too. Not to mention, they like getting dirty outdoors when its playtime. But don’t you worry, since Labs love the water, it will be an easier feat to give them a bath compared to other dog breeds.
Moreover, make sure to check the ears on a weekly basis for any signs of infection and wax buildup. Brush his teeth weekly to prevent dental problems and keep his breath fresh. Monthly Nail trimming is also needed.
The price of a Labrador Puppy:
If you want to own a Labrador puppy, you will have to prepare at least $1,500 at a minimum to buy one from a reputable breeder. On the other hand, if you want to adopt one from the shelter, all you need to pay is $37 for the adoption fee. Now if you want to foster puppies from the rescue, you will need to pay $350 to $400 for the adoption fee.
History of a Labrador:
Back in the 1800s, Newfoundland travels saw dogs that were helping the local fishermen with net hauling. The Labs are the small black dog then. The Earl of Malmesbury reportedly saw one of these water dogs on a fishing boat and established a breeding kennel into perfect this dog breed, turning the water dogs into retrievers and water dogs. At that time, there was a huge market for water dogs and they were sold to fishermen to help them with hauling their nets. However, the popularity of these dogs significantly decreased after that.
The popularity of the Lab rose again throughout the 20th and 21st century. The Lab excelled both in the field and in shows. Field dogs were described as leaner and more energetic, while show dogs were described to be stockier and shorter in stature. More than these, the Lab rose in popularity as family companions, guide dogs, and service dogs. Their excellent sense of smell also makes them very helpful in detecting drugs and explosives.
One of the coolest and unbelievable facts about the Labrador Retriever is that they are indeed America’s most loved dogs! For 24 years in a row, the Labs have topped the charts of American Kennel Club’s Most Popular Dog Breeds in America! What an achievement!
Are you a first-time pet owner? Check out this top 10 dog breeds list from Animaltube.TV that you can start with:
It’s really hard to resist the Labrador’s charm and it’s no surprise why this is America’s most popular dog breed for the past two centuries. They’re very lovable, highly loyal, and super friendly. They’re great with the kids and even friendly towards strangers and other dogs. So if you want a dog that will always be up for any outdoor activity at the same time, greet you with so much enthusiasm and excitement the moment you walk in the door, then the Lab is definitely for your family!
Have you ever tried training an adult dog? That can be a challenge! We’d like to hear your experiences in the comments section below!
Up Next: Golden Retriever Dogs and Puppies