Species group: Sporting Group dogs
Other name(s): Lab; Labrador
The Labrador Retriever has been ranked as the most popular dog in the United States by the American Kennel Club for 25 years in a row. They're active, energetic, and seem to have the personality of an outgoing puppy for many years, making them well-regarded family dogs. Developed in Canada and then England to fetch waterfowl for hunters, these intelligent and active dogs love to get out there and play fetch with their humans. They're happy dogs who aren't annoyed by noisy, active families.
As an exuberant dog that must be trained not to jump up, they may not be right for fragile owners or for people who just want to kick back on the couch. Be prepared to keep those busy mouths supplied with chew toys.
Appearance / health:
Labs are medium-sized, strongly built dogs possessing a sound, athletic, well-balanced conformation. The head should be broad with a moderate stop and a slightly pronounced brow. The eyes should be kind and expressive and be either brown or hazel in color. The upper and lower eyelids of the yellow Labrador Retriever should be outlined in black. The ears should hang close to the head and be set slightly above the line of the eye.
The muzzle should be on the same (parallel) plane as the skull and should be of a length approximately equal that of the skull. The lips should not be squared off or heavy but curve gracefully back giving the Labrador the appearance of having a slight “smile”.
The Labrador’s tail is a distinguishing feature of this breed. It should be quite thick at the base; it should also be flat underneath at the base and then rounding as it gradually tapers toward the tip. It should be of medium length and thickly clothed all around, free of feathering, with the short, dense coat thus giving the tail the peculiar rounded appearance that is described as the “otter” tail.
Labrador Retrievers are relatively low maintenance dogs. A weekly brushing with a firm bristled brush, followed by a wipe down with a rough towel is sufficient to keep the coat clean and promote healthy coat and skin. Brushing, including the use of a tool such as an undercoat rake, several times a week will be necessary during shedding periods. Labrador Retrievers having proper coats are heavy shedders during the twice yearly shedding seasons and healthy dogs do shed some hair throughout the year. Unless the dog get into something foul smelling or staining, Labradors should not be bathed. Unnecessary bathing strips the natural oils from the skin and coat and can cause problems. Labradors should never be shaved down in hot weather. The coat protects the from heat and sun and insect bites. Toe nails should be kept short by regular clipping.
A daily brisk walk, in addition to the usual walks for elimination purposes is required to keep the dog physically fit and mentally stimulated. Investigate and consider the now popular dog parks as a source of exercise and socializing for your dog. But this is recommended only for the adult dog that has had some training and is generally obedient.
Labrador Retrievers are subject to Hip and Elbow Dysplasia and the breed is subject to inherited conditions of the eye, such as Progressive Retinal Atrophy, Retinal Dysplasia, some forms of inherited cataracts and other conditions which can cause problems with vision, including blindness. When buying a puppy ask if both parents have been certified by OFA to be free of hip and elbow dysplasia and registered with CERF as having been examined by a board certified ophthalmologist and found to be free of hereditary eye problems.
Labradors are also subject, though not in great numbers, to anterior cruciate ligament tears and ruptures, tricuspid valve dysplasia (a debilitating heart condition), hypothyroidism, allergies (food and environmental), and epilepsy. Reputable breeder test potential breeding stock and avoid using any dogs which exhibit any of the forgoing health issues.
Behavior / temperament:
Being developed and bred to be retrievers, Labradors are naturally “mouthy”. They will attempt to carry in their mouths anything from clothing to the human hand, arm, ankle or foot, usually with a gentle mouth but they do have to be trained to leave those objects not meant to be retrieved. Because of this mouthiness biting accidents do occur. For that reason the interaction between children and dogs must be supervised. Labradors are intelligent and generally easy-going with strangers, which makes them unsuitable as guard dogs. This intelligence, good temper and activity level are reasons why Labradors have been found to be ideal as detection, therapy, search and rescue and guide dogs. Labradors should never be either shy or aggressive. Labradors have been developed to want to be with humans and other animals. Because of their basic nature, Labradors get on well with other domestic animals. Because of their intelligence they are easily trainable and should be trained because that same intelligence will create chaos if the dog is allowed to grow up untrained. The Labrador Retriever very much reflects the time and attention given it by its owners.
Labs are an intelligent breed, and are never shy or aggressive. They like human company and would not like to be left alone for more than few hours. They are affectionate and devoted toward their owner with a strong will to please. Labs are very playful and are quick to join family members in any type of activity.
Most Labrador Retrievers love to work and to learn, if only to be in the company of their owner. Labradors often believe they know best so training must be consistent in vocabulary, correction and most important, in praise. If you have never trained a dog, it is suggested that you obtain a referral obedience training classes conducted by an experienced instructor. Your veterinarian, local shelters or the breeder from whom you purchase your Labrador can make recommendations.
Remember that the breed was developed for hunting purposes and a noisy hunting dog would be counterproductive. Adult Labradors will bark at the approach of strange cars or people onto their property. In general, the Labrador is not a barker and should not be thought of as a potential watchdog.
exceptional family pets, excelent service dogs, good hunting dogs, affectionate, energetic
joint problems, hyperactive, hard headed pet, heavy shedder, exercise requirements, hip dysplasia
strict feeding schedule, Labs LOVE water, muscular dogs, weather resistant coat, insane drive
A really great family dog.
Labrador retrievers are usually really great around kids. I would be careful around small children because they can get super excited and jump, knocking little ones over. They are really great dogs for older kids who can play fetch and run with them outside. They are super eager to please and get upset if they sense you are mad. In this way, they can be great candidates for training. They also tend to get overweight and love to eat. In the clinic, I saw many Labradors come in for ingesting some foreign object. This also means they require daily exercise. Our Labrador, Timber, was such a sweet dog, but was not incredibly smart. She wanted to please us, but wasn't always the sharpest tack. Overall a great breed, and can be great for people that have never owned a dog before..
From L Sand CVT Feb 24 2018 3:50AM
The way your dog's body was meant to be fed
There are so many misconceptions about raw feeding and I hope to quickly properly educate you so making an opinion for yourself is easier. I am a certified nutritionist for dogs and cats and the moment I finished my education I knew I needed to make better choices for my own personal dogs in regards to how I fed them. There are pros and cons to any feeding method so I cannot say it's going to be easy to know exactly what choices to make. The doubtful mind always says no, so anyone unfamiliar with anything is always hesitant. I see that a lot with other professionals in the field, specifically veterinarians. I am fortunate to have an integrative veterinarian who 100% supports this feeding method. Lets talk about the pros as there are many. There is no possible way to dispute that a dog's (especially cats) digestive system and teeth are designed for a diet of animal tissue, they are carnivores. Having jagged teeth throughout their mouth and a very short digestive tract, their bodies are not equipped to properly process plant material. Think of a cow's or sheep's flat teeth, made for grinding plants, and their 4 chambered stomachs, made to digest and assimilate nutrients from plants. They are herbivores. Feeding a diet of dry dog food, which is very heavy in plant based ingredients of many varieties,synthetic vitamins, and taste additives reeks havoc on their entire body systems over time. Some say feeding raw is expensive and time consuming. I'm part of a group with thousands and thousands of raw feeders around the world and we completely disagree. If you can follow a simple recipe you can make raw food for your pet. Learning how to shop for ingredients on sale and making relationships with local butchers is all you need to make it affordable. I feed two dogs raw cheaper than I wold purchasing an average quality dry food. It CAN be done if your pet's lifetime of health is important to you. There are so many support systems out there for this approach, it truly couldn't be any easier. The shelf life of raw food is far longer than that of dry food. Did you know that the nutrients and quality of dry food diminishes with the passing of each day? My dog's food is kept in a deep freezer and put in the refrigerator for thawing each night, ready for the next day. Freezing locks in all nutrients and can be kept for years without spoiling. Does your dog suffer from chronic conditions like ear infections and skin issues? Did you ever think it could be food related? Well let me tell you that it is. I have assisted with completely eradicating a host of chronic health issues in dogs and cats with diet alone. To most recently include a chihuahua with disc disease and no use of his hind legs. He now climbs steps and runs. He is 12 years old. No other therapy than a raw diet, regular massage, and one veterinary acupuncture visit. Let's talk about the cons. Now, most freeze dried and premade raw can be expensive for the amount you get. Feeding freeze dried is mostly for convenience. I use it when I need convenience like a weekend camping trip. I enjoy making my dog's food. There a lot of satisfaction in it for me. There is so much talk about bacteria like salmonella and e.coli when someone references raw food. Can it be present in raw food? Of course! But, did you know that your dry food can and does have the same bacteria? Dry and canned pet food recalls are a very common for bacteria. I have 100% control over the ingredients, processing, and storing of my pets raw food. Proper handling and sourcing of raw ingredients can and does deeply diminish the probability of bacteria. What about parasites? Again, yes of course raw materials can have parasites. As can dry and canned mass produced pet food. And again, the proper handling and sourcing of these ingredients remove this concern. (As a note: I have been raw feeding for over 5 years and NOT ONE of my dogs or clients have been treated for parasites or bacterial issues) Proper formulation can be a con to raw feeding. Honestly, its ridiculously easy. But without the proper ratio of ingredients you can cause issues. Companies make you think it is hard. They want to make you buy their product. It's a marketing scheme that works and unfortunately affects our pets negatively. I hope this review can shed light into the seemingly scary world of raw feeding. Educate yourselves and don't be afraid to jump in head first. Your pet's health and quality of life will be all the proof you need to know this is without a doubt the best decision you have ever made. .
From Megan S 59 days ago
behavior training tool
All dogs need to learn how to behave and a great "brain-break" and self soothing tool to use between activities or for crate training is a kong. Filled with a treat or small bit of peanut butter, this activity can provide the dog with a reward sensation as well as a much needed chewing activity for "down time" between trainings. We have utilized this with many of our breeds but huskies can be downright destructive to any material, so use of the kong is fabulous (while supervised) once the husky reaches maturity. As puppies are constantly teething and learning what is THEIRS and what is yours, kongs are a wonderful "replacement" tool for your couch, shoes and other destructible items in your home. .
From petlover2 92 days ago
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