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Labrador Retriever Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Labrador Retriever so you can get to know the breed more.

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Labrador Retriever
OriginEngland Canada
Other Names
What other names does the Labrador Retriever have? The dog breed also known as...
Labrador, Lab
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
Purebred
AKC Group
Is Labrador Retriever recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1917 as a Sporting breed.
FCI Group
Is Labrador Retriever recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Retrievers - Flushing Dogs - Water Dogs group, in the Retrievers section.
Breed Recognition
What kennel clubs and organizations recognize or register the Labrador Retriever breed?
American Canine RegistryAmerican Kennel ClubAmerica's Pet RegistryCanadian Kennel ClubDog Registry of America Inc.Federation Cynologique InternationaleKennel Club of Great BritainNorth American Purebred Registry, Inc.American Canine Association, Inc.Australian National Kennel CouncilContinental Kennel ClubNational Kennel ClubNew Zealand Kennel ClubUnited Kennel ClubCanadian Canine Registry
Price
How much does the Labrador Retriever puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it? Labrador Retriever price:
$1000-$2000
If you choose to purchase the Labrador Retriever, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Labrador Retriever for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Labrador Retriever gets to a happy place.

Labrador Retriever History

Origins

It is believed that the St. John’s Water Dog is a direct ancestor of the Labrador Retriever and that the breed has evolved alongside the fishing business as early as the 1500s. At that time, small water dogs were bred with Newfoundlands to create the St. John’s Water Dog or sometimes called the Lesser Newfoundland. These dogs were owned by fishermen and jumped into icy water to bring back fish that had fallen off the fishing hooks. They would also pull in fish-filled nets. The breed was perfect for these jobs because their coat repelled water and their webbed paws made them excellent swimmers. However, since accurate historical documentation regarding the origin of the St. John’s Water Dog is very little, we can only examine the relevant known history and speculate as to its ancestors.

According to experts, the Labrador breed dates back to at least the 1830s, when the St. John’s Water Dogs, bred by European settlers in Newfoundland, were first introduced to Britain from ships trading between Canada and Poole in Dorsetshire. The Labrador Retriever was developed by crossing these canines with British hunting dogs. The Earl of Malmesbury, the Duke of Buccleuch, the Earl of Home, and Sir John Scott were among its early patrons. However, early writers have confused the Labrador with the much larger Newfoundland and the Lesser Newfoundland. Colonel Peter Hawker described the first Labrador as being around the size of an English Pointer, with a black coat, which was the most common color among them, along with head and snout, a deep chest, and a tail that was not carried as high as the Newfoundland’s. Moreover, both the Earl and Duke of Malmesbury used them in shooting sports and began to call them their “Labrador Dogs” around 1887. The name stuck and the Earl’s son began breeding the dogs. Although the dogs were certainly known as Labradors long before this date, this is the first written record as they found a letter written by Earl in which he wrote; “We always call mine Labrador dogs and I have kept the breed as pure as I could from the first I had from Poole”.

 

Further development

During the second half of the 19th century, British breeders refined and standardized the breed. The physical and temperamental breed traits recall the Labrador Retriever’s original purpose. A short, dense, weather-resistant coat was preferred because during a Canadian winter longhaired retrievers would be encrusted with ice when coming out of the water. In its ancestral homeland, the breed would be assigned to a fishing boat to retrieve the fish that came off the trawl. Moreover, the breed’s thick, tapering tail serves as a powerful rudder, constantly moving back and forth as the dog swims and aids the dog in turning. When it comes to characteristics, the breed is described as one of a kindly, outgoing, tractable nature, eager to please, and nonaggressive toward man or animal. Furthermore, the breed began to grow in popularity in the early 1900s when hunters and farmers from the United States learned of the breed’s work ethic and began incorporating Labradors into their daily lives.

 

Why Labrador Retrievers are good guide dogs

The Labrador Retriever was bred to be a working dog from the beginning. Originally bred to retrieve items for their owners, but the breed has subsequently expanded into a variety of roles. The breed first found its way into the guide dog business in the early 20th century, not long after the first guide dog schools arose with German Shepherds as their first canine students. Labrador Retrievers quickly followed suit and the breed today accounts for a sizable portion of the world’s guiding dogs. The Labrador Retriever has a strong work ethic as well as an unusually high degree of intelligence and is known for being able to accomplish practically everything that a trainer or owner asks, given enough time and supervision. The breed has a personality that predisposes him or her to serve as a guide dog. The breed enjoys following their owners around town, regardless of their destination, but they are very sensitive to every sensory input they come across. They not only detect all impediments and potential risks, but they go out of their way to be extra cautious until the danger has passed.

 

Recognition

The Kennel Club of England recognized the breed in 1903, and the AKC registered its first dog of the breed in 1917. The Labrador Retriever topped American Kennel Club registrations for the first time in 1991 and has reigned as America’s favorite breed ever since.

Labrador Retriever General Appearance

Size
What size is this breed? How big is this dog? Labrador Retriever size:
Large
Weight
How much does the Labrador Retriever weigh? Labrador Retriever weight:
Male: 60-75 pounds (27-34kg), Female: 55-70 pounds (25-32 kg)
Avg. Weight
What is the average weight of the Labrador Retriever? Labrador Retriever average weight:
Male: 67.5 pounds (30.5 kg), Female: 62.5 pounds (28.5 kg)
Height
How tall is the Labrador Retriever? Labrador Retriever height:
Male: 22-24 inches (56-61cm), Female: 21-23 inches (53-58 cm)
Avg. Height
What is the average height of this fido? Labrador Retriever average height:
Male: 23 inches (58.5 cm), Female: 22 inches (55.5 cm)

Labrador Retriever Hair & Care

Coat
What type of coat does the Labrador Retriever have? What does this canine coat look like?
DenseWaterproofHardShort
Colors
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Labrador Retriever's coat?
YellowChocolateBlack
Grooming
How to groom the Labrador Retriever and how often?
Effortless: The Labrador Retriever requires minimal grooming. Seasonal flea treatment is needed, but cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer isn't necessary. Ears and eyes should be cleaned sometimes to avoid infections. Labrador Retriever is one of the best choices if you don't have the time, skill or money to take care of a high maintenance dog. Highly recommended for beginners.
Shedding Level
How much do Labrador Retriever dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Labrador? Labrador Retriever shedding level:
Labrador Retrievers shed moderately. It's a natural process of the hair growth cycle. Regular brushing reduces the amount of hair that sheds. It mostly depends on their health status and breed type.

Labrador Retriever Characteristics

Temperament
What kind of personality does the Labrador Retriever have? What characteristics does the breed have?
AffectionateCheerfulFriendlyIntelligentLoyalPlayfulSocialAlertEnergeticGentleLovingGoingResponsive
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Labrador Retriever? Are they intelligent?
Outstanding: Labrador Retriever is one of the brightest dog breeds. They desire to learn tricks and commands often. The limit is your creativity. They understand and memorize new commands in fewer than 5 repetitions. This breed obeys for the first command 95% of the time or better.
Trainability
Are Labrador Retriever dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Labrador Retrievers are very easy to train. They easily find out the association between commands and actions.
Playfulness
How playful is this breed?
The Labrador Retriever is a highly playful breed. Excited barking and sometimes nipping will alert you to play.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Labrador Retriever sensitivity:
Labrador Retrievers don't like an irregular daily routine, noisy household and frequent guest visits. This breed emotional level reflects their owner's feelings and they don't handle punishments well.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they?
Labrador Retrievers may seem unfriendly sometimes due to their independence. Their happiness doesn't depend on their owners emotional level.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Labrador need? Labrador Retriever social needs:
Labrador Retrievers need a lot of social interaction. They desire to always be with someone or around people. This breed hates being left alone.
Barking
Do Labrador Retriever dogs bark a lot? Why does my Lab bark?
Average: The Labrador Retriever barks occasionally. They can change their barks depending on their emotional level and what they're trying to say. Different barks could mean the same and same barks could have a different meaning. Top reasons for barking: protection, alarm, fear, boredom, attention seeking, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking.
Watchdog Ability
Is Labrador Retriever good as a watchdog?
Labrador Retrievers are average watchdogs. If they sense something different, they will alert you, but the observation isn't considered as their main job.
Territorial
Do Labrador Retriever dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their territory?
Labrador Retrievers are average defenders. Some dogs are very protective of their territory, while others easily let a stranger to trespass. This breed is not sure to defend his territory in every situation.
Biting Potential
Do Labrador Retriever bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Labrador? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Labrador Retriever? Why do dog bites happen?
Moderate
The Labrador Retriever has an average chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
Mouthiness
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Labrador Retriever do?
Labrador Retrievers have a strong tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Labrador Retrievers need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Labrador Retriever to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Labrador Retriever roam?
Labrador Retrievers have average wanderlust potential. Sometimes they like to explore the world and they might escape once or twice, but usually, they prefer staying safely at home. Safer to teach them how to get back to you on command.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Labrador Retriever have high prey drive?
Labrador Retrievers have low to an average impulse to chase and catch something like a cat or any other small aminals.
Apartment Friendly
Is Labrador Retriever good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Labrador Retrievers are not recommended for an apartment lifestyle. They need to be outside in the garden, or you must walk them for a few hours every day.
Adaptability
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Labrador Retrievers adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments. They don't mind moving from one place to another with their owner.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Labrador Retrievers tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
Fighting Dog
Where Labrador Retriever dogs used as a fighting dog in the history?
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Labrador Retriever Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they friendly with strangers?
Labrador Retrievers are very stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
Are Labrador Retriever dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Labrador Retriever and children:
Labrador Retrievers are very kid-friendly dogs. This breed enjoys being surrounded by children.
Cat Friendly
How well do Labrador Retriever dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats?
Labrador Retrievers are cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Is Labrador Retriever good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Labrador Retriever dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Labrador Retrievers are very dog-friendly dogs. If you want more dogs in your family or you'd like to join dog meetups, the Labrador Retriever can be a great choice.
Office Friendly
Are Labrador Retrievers good office dogs? Do Labrador Retrievers make good office friendly dogs? Can Labrador Retrievers be office dogs?
No
Labrador Retriever is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Labrador Retriever dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Labrador temperament with senior people? Are Labrador Retriever dogs good for elderly owners?
Labrador Retrievers are one of the best breeds for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Labrador Retriever dogs get along with other pets? Are Labrador Retriever dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Labrador Retrievers are usually friendly towards other pets.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Labrador Retriever breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
No
Labrador Retrievers are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a service dog?
Yes
This breed makes good as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Labrador Retriever breed is a good choice for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a therapy dog?
Yes
This breed makes a perfect therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Labrador Retriever breed is a good choice for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a sniffer dog?
Yes
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Labrador Retriever breed is a good choice for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a search and rescue dog?
Yes
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people. The Labrador Retriever breed is a good choice for SAR purposes.
Boat Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a boat dog?
Yes
Labrador Retriever breed usually likes being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Labrador Retriever be a drafting dog?
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Labrador Retriever is not the best breed for drafting purposes.

Labrador Retriever Health Factors

Health Issues
Is it a healthy breed? Do Labrador Retriever dogs have health problems?
The Labrador Retriever is a healthy breed, but there are certain health issues that you should check with your vet regularly.
Health Problems
What health problems does the Labrador Retriever breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the Labrador Retriever breed? Health risks of Labrador Retriever:
Acute Moist DermatitisBloatCataractsCold TailEar InfectionsElbow DysplasiaEpilepsyHip DysplasiaMyopathyOsteochondrosis DissecansProgressive retinal atrophy (PRA)Tricuspid Valve Dysplasia
Life Expectancy
How long do Labrador Retriever dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Labrador Retriever be?
10-12 years
Hypoallergenic
Is the Labrador Retriever breed hypoallergenic?
No
Labrador Retrievers don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Labrador Retriever have?
Labrador Retrievers are high energy dogs. Active lifestyle makes them happy.
Exercise Need
How much exercise does this dog need? How much exercise do Labrador Retriever dogs require per day?
Labrador Retrievers need a lot of exercises. Long walks should be on a daily schedule. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Labrador Retrievers don't need too much sleep. They are energetic and desire to live an active life. If you think naps are overrated, this breed can be the best choice for you.
Avg. daily food consumption
How much food does the Labrador Retriever need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
Recommended daily amount: 2.5 to 3 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Labrador Retriever risk for obesity:
High: The Labrador Retriever breed has a strong tendency to overweight. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you want to keep balance, increase the amount and frequency of your daily dog walk and play with the Labrador Retriever more often. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the Labrador Retriever's weight regularly.
Weather & Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot and cold weather & climate?
Tolerates warm and cold weather.
Stinkiness
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?
High
The Labrador Retriever has a high chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling tendency
Does the Labrador Retriever drool?
The Labrador Retriever is an average drooler. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

Labrador Retriever Reproducibility

Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?
60-64 days
Reproductive cycle of the female Labrador Retriever: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
How often can the Labrador Retriever have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Labrador Retriever have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
5-10 puppies

Labrador Retriever Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Intelligent Rank: Outstanding: Labrador Retriever is one of the brightest dog breeds.
  • Trainability: Labrador Retrievers are very easy to train.
  • Grooming: Effortless: The Labrador Retriever requires minimal grooming.
  • Adaptability: Labrador Retrievers adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
  • Child Friendly: Labrador Retrievers are very kid-friendly dogs.
  • Cat Friendly: Labrador Retrievers are cat-friendly dogs.
  • Dog Friendly: Labrador Retrievers are very dog-friendly dogs.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: Labrador Retrievers are one of the best breeds for elderly people.
  • Service Dog: This breed makes good as a service dog.
  • Therapy Dog: This breed makes a perfect therapy dog.
  • Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog: A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones.
  • Search and Rescue Dog (SAR): The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people.
  • Boat Dog: Labrador Retriever breed usually likes being on a boat.
Cons
  • Hypoallergenic: Labrador Retrievers don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Apartment Friendly: Labrador Retrievers are not recommended for an apartment lifestyle.
  • Stinkiness: The Labrador Retriever has a high chance of bad smell.
  • Weight Gain Potential: High: The Labrador Retriever breed has a strong tendency to overweight.
  • Mouthiness: Labrador Retrievers have a strong tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone: Labrador Retrievers tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
  • Office Friendly: Labrador Retriever is not the best dog breed for office environment.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Labrador Retrievers are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.

Rate The Labrador Retriever Breed

Labrador Retriever Comments, Reviews & Questions

  • Eloise

    May 17, 2020, 10:45:46 AM:

    A Labrador seems the perfect fit for me. I love being active too and it seems playful and quite affectionate. Perfect!

  • Meadow

    Apr 25, 2020, 12:10:03 AM:

    Our family has always had a labrador, and they are great dogs. Their personalities can vary, but most of them will love you, and sometimes anyone else who comes through the door, unconditionally.

  • Alexander von Spleny

    Apr 14, 2019, 1:34:04 PM:

    Congratulation. We were wating for a website like this. My family and I love dogs.