Breed overview the Labrador retriever

by Amy Cooper
Black Labrador retriever

Are you considering getting a Labrador retriever? Or are you just interested in the breed? Well this is the perfect place to start! This post is a short breed profile of the Labrador retriever from their size to how much exercise they need and their temperament.

Breed overview

Black lab in bed

As the name suggests Labrador retrievers were bred to aid their owners when out hunting. So, they needed to be intelligent, strong and highly trainable with a sensitive nose (Labrador training HQ, 2020). Labs have a short coat meaning that they need minimal grooming but will shed lots! They come in many colours, but the standard colours are black, chocolate and yellow. Labs stand at 21 to 24 inches to the shoulder so are classed as a medium-large breed and have a lifespan of 10-12 years. 

Grooming

Chocolate lab in drying coat

As I mentioned above Labrador retrievers need very little grooming. So, will need the occasional brush (about once a week) and bath. But they do shed a LOT so it will be beneficial to brush them more during shedding season. Obviously, Labradors will also need their nails trimmed and teeth cleaned regularly exactly the same as all other dogs. 

Exercise

Labs sat in flowers

Because Labrador retrievers were originally hunting dogs, they need a fair amount of exercise (1 hours a day). Not only do they need physical exercise like walking or swimming but also mental stimulation. This can be done by training, which your Labrador will love, or using puzzle toys. 

Health

Labrador retrievers, like most large breeds, are genetically predisposed to hip dysplasia. This is the biggest health concern with Labradors. However, all well good breeders have both parents genetically tested/screenedfor hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia and eye problems. This means that when you buy a puppy you know it’s got a much smaller chance of developing these problems when its older. 

Temperament

Labrador in glasses

Labrador retrievers are trusting, intelligent, outgoing and gentle! They are also eager to please and will do anything for food which is why they are so easy to train. Labradors also tend to be very active and mature slowly so can behave like an oversized hyper puppy! 

So, overall Labrador retrievers are a very gentle happy go lucky breed which makes them the perfect family pet! They are also very easy to train which is why they are often used as assistance dogs. This makes them perfect for first time dog owners and families!

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