The Labrador Retriever is a popular family dog that is bred in numerous kennels in Germany. The dogs are known for their friendly and active nature – which makes them loyal companions for growing children and sporty adults. A Labrador pup wants to be part of the family from day one, and they are quick to bond with strangers. You can find out here what you need to consider before buying a Labrador.
The Appearance of the Labrador Retriever
Labrador Retrievers are naturally sporty dogs that have an athletic build. The prerequisite for this is that they can pursue their urge to move and are not overfed. Since the dog breed is prone to joint problems and obesity, some animals become significantly slower and slower, especially with age. Among other things, they differ from the Golden Retriever in their dense, short fur and in their larger and more powerful physique.
Golden Retriever or Labrador? What’s the difference?
- The Labrador is stronger and broader than the Golden Retriever. Males grow up to 60 cm (standard 56-57 cm) and can weigh 36 kg and more. Adult females weigh up to 32 kilograms and reach a height of 54 – 56 cm at the withers. Golden retrievers, on the other hand, weigh a maximum of 32 kilograms.
- The Labrador’s facial features are a little stricter than the Golden Retriever’s raised, smiling lips.
- Goldens have a long face, while Labrador Retrievers tend to have broad heads with prominent eyebrows.
- The Labrador’s coat is short and waterproof. The hair of the Golden Retriever stands out like a brush on the tail and on the underside of the body.
Fisherman’s Friend – The Story of the Labrador Retriever
The dog breed is relatively young compared to other breeds and has only been bred since the 19th century. An FCI breed standard and Kennel Club recognition have only existed since the early 20th century. The Labrador Retriever does not come from mainland Canada – as the name suggests – but was originally used under the name St. John’s Dog in Newfoundland as a working dog for retrieving small game and fish. It is closely related to Newfoundland, which was used as a draft animal in the region and is significantly larger.
The Labrador is a utility and competition dog
- As a fishing dog, the Labrador pulls in nets and catches fish that fall out of the nets while hauling.
- When hunting ducks and rabbits, he looks for the prey and brings it back unharmed.
- Today, the Labrador is used in numerous work areas in private and public spaces.
- Due to its high willingness to work, Labrador clubs traditionally organize working tests and competition games with the dogs.
- The outstanding abilities of the animals still play a major role in the selection for breeding.
Labrador Retrievers are very adaptable dogs that can thrive in any environment given enough exercise. They learn quickly and, with good training, obediently listen to every word. The dogs feel very comfortable in the water and like to jump into ponds, pools, and mud puddles. They are very active and keep their owners on their toes well into old age. This versatility makes them balanced life companions for families, couples, and singles. Due to their natural joy in searching and retrieving and because of their inherent reliability, the dogs are suitable as helpers in almost every work area.
Thoroughly Family Dog
The Labrador Retriever loves his significant others and works hard to please everyone. The animals are therefore unsuitable as free-ranging farm dogs or kennel dogs. They observe people and other animals closely and are usually very sensitive and careful with other living beings. Their hunting and killing instincts are limited; instead, the interested dogs prefer to examine their surroundings in a gentle and relaxed manner or play active games with humans and dogs. Wild animals are often retrieved alive and their soft mouths are hardly injured.
Distinctive characteristics of the Labrador at a glance:
- capable of learning
Training and Husbandry
When training a Labrador puppy, as with all puppies, the first twelve weeks of life are crucial. In the formative and socialization phase, the dogs get to know everyday stimuli and grow into self-confident dogs that quickly recognize and accept their own limits and those of their owner. Even as adults, Labrador Retrievers are good students and like to perfect their skills with daily training. Even family dogs without professional commitments should be encouraged by the owner so that there is no boredom in everyday life and the dog can prove its abilities.
More variety, more joy – When does a Labrador feel restricted?
If a Labrador is loved from the heart, it will come to terms with almost any situation in life in order to be part of the family. Nevertheless, the dogs want to be challenged in everyday life and prove themselves to their owners. People with walking disabilities and older dog owners should give their Labrador access to dog parks and forest areas so that they can pursue their need for exercise and adventure. They willingly take part in cycling and jogging tours, but in the long run, just running is not challenging enough and the dogs feel under-challenged. Creative variations of well-known games with small rewards bring great joy to every representative of the popular breed of dogs and promote animal health.