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Labrador Retriever

Origin of the Labrador Retriever


Despite its name, which refers to the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, the International Cynological Federation (FCI) recognizes the origin of the Labrador retriever in Great Britain. However, the history of this popular breed is related to the island of Newfoundland and, more specifically, to the Canadian city of San Juan (Saint John).


It is likely that the Saint John's dog, direct ancestor of the Labrador retriever, was a descendant of British water dogs. These water dogs would have been brought to the island of Newfoundland by English fishermen. On the island, the San Juan dog would have developed, which was used by fishermen to help in fishing activities, dragging fishing net lines to the shore.


The Labrador Retriever, therefore, had to be hardy, hard-working and good swimmers. They also needed to have dense fur to protect them from the icy northern waters and thick tails to serve as a rudder. The smallest variety of Saint John's dogs would have given rise to different breeds of retrievers, among which is the Labrador retriever.


In the mid-19th century, some St. John's dogs were exported to England, where they were used by a handful of breeders to obtain the "perfect" retriever. Thus, after several generations and careful selection, the Labrador Retriever dog was born in England. In the first two decades of the 20th century, the morphological bases of the breed, as we know it today, were established in England. At that time there were already several retrievers registered with the Kennel Club in England.


Labradors were imported to the United States during World War I. The Second World War had disastrous consequences for this breed, as for all other breeds, and dog breeding was relegated to a less than secondary level.


After the Second World War, the Labrador began to gain popularity. Little by little he demonstrated his great qualities as a hunting dog, but what earned him the greatest popularity was his good character added to his pleasant appearance.


Today the Labrador Retriever stands out in many activities. It is one of the preferred dogs for K-SAR (search and rescue dogs) groups, as a guide for the blind, assistance dog, therapy dog and the most popular canine pet in the world.


Characteristics of the Labrador Retriever


The Labrador Retriever is a medium-sized dog, with a muscular, strong and compact body. For males, the height at the withers is between 56 and 57 centimeters. For females, the height at the withers is between 54 and 56 centimeters. The weight of males should be between 27 and 34 kilograms. The weight of females should be between 25 and 32 kilograms. The main characteristics of its body are the following:


Wide and deep chest.


Straight back.


Slightly longer than tall.


Wide head.


Elongated and wide snout.


Pronounced stop.


Scissors bite.


Strong jaws.


Ears are medium sized and hang on the sides of the head.


Eyes with a lively and intelligent expression.


The tail, characteristic of this breed, is thick at the base and ends in a point.


Labrador Retriever Colors


The Labrador Retriever is brown or chestnut in color. It has abundant fur that gives it a rounded appearance, which is why it is called "otter tail." It should never be curved over the spine.


The Labrador dog's coat is short, dense and without waves. This breed has a double coat. The inner mantle is soft and waterproof. The outer layer is harder and helps maintain waterproofing. The accepted colors for the Labrador are black, chocolate and yellow. The latter ranges from light cream to reddish tones. Small white spots on the Labrador Retriever's chest are acceptable.


What is the Labrador Retriever puppy like?


The Labrador dog is usually very friendly with people and dogs, but must be properly socialized when it is still a puppy. A properly socialized Labrador Retriever is often excellent company for children.


It is important to train him from a puppy to avoid problems of excessive attention seeking and separation anxiety. Additionally, Labradors tend to have a long adolescence, so they are not the best pets for people who prefer to lead a sedentary life. Yes, they are a good option for those who enjoy physical activities outside.


Labrador Retriever Character


One of the most notable characteristics of the Labrador Retriever is its character. Due to its friendly appearance and exceptionally sociable nature, this dog breed has been the most popular breed in the world for more than a decade. In addition, the stability of character of these dogs has made them great partners of humanity, collaborating as rescue dogs, therapy dogs, assistance dogs and much more.


The Labrador Retriever is sociable, friendly, loyal, intelligent and fun-loving. This breed is easy to train, making it a good companion if you have enough time and space.


This breed has a lot of energy and needs a lot of exercise. For this reason, although it can adapt to living in an apartment, it is necessary that it receive long walks and be able to play with other dogs. The Labrador Retriever's love of water is one of its behavioral characteristics. The breed also has a notable predisposition to fetch, so it is easy to teach them to fetch things. Despite its great qualities, the Labrador Retriever tends to frequently request attention.


Many Labradors tend to rush toward other dogs, and this can cause conflicts with unfamiliar dogs. However, the Labrador Retriever is not fond of fights and normally avoids them, although it can get into trouble due to its drive and energy.


Labrador Retriever Care


The Labrador dog can get used to living in a small apartment if it is given enough walks and exercise. The ideal would be to offer him about three walks a day, well spread throughout the day. It will be important to look at the typical mistakes of the walk to try to avoid them. This routine should be combined with some active exercise for adult dogs, since the Labrador Retriever is a breed known for its insatiable appetite that can lead to obesity if allowed. In addition, exercise will help him channel his active and restless temperament, very common in this breed.


Toys will be very important for the Labrador Retriever and will help us find new ways to channel all the energy that this dog has inside. Discover some intelligence toys for dogs at AnimalWised and don't hesitate to provide them regularly. Some Labrador dogs tend to acquire the habit of biting everything when they are puppies. Classic teethers will help us solve this problem.


Finally we remember the importance of bathing him every month or month and a half as well as brushing him. This will help prevent the appearance of parasites and help our Labrador Retriever enjoy silky, shiny and clean coat.


Labrador Retriever Education


The Labrador Retriever is a relatively easy dog to educate and train due to its sociable nature and its predisposition to affection and rewards. The ideal will be to start working on the socialization of the dog from its puppy stage, a process that we will continue working on until its adult stage. We must relate him with all types of people, animals and objects, thus avoiding the development of phobias and fears in his adult stage.


On the other hand, learning basic obedience commands, such as sitting, staying still or responding to the call, will also be very important. All of these commands will not only help us keep the dog safe, they will also make our relationship with him good and we will stimulate him mentally. Since the Labrador Retriever dog has excellent qualities, it won't hurt to stimulate it with games and activities of all kinds. A way to keep the Labrador Retriever agile and happy, since it loves games and fun.

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