Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retriever

Country of origin: Great Britain
Registries: AKC, UKC, CKC
Occupation: Hunter, companion,
Size: 21.5 to 24.5 in tall; 55
to 80 lbs
Longevity: 11 to 13 years
Exercise: Moderate
Training: Easy; a challenge to
keep motivated
Grooming: Easy
Colors: Black, yellow, dark chocolate,
light chocolate

Labradors love the world and everything in it, especially food. And water. This gloriously happy, extrovert dog is the UK’s and North America’s overwhelmingly favourite breed, outdistancing the next favourites, Golden Retrievers and German Shepherds, by three to one. The breed’s distant origins are uncertain but it is known that dogs reached Newfoundland – either with Portuguese and Basque fishermen, or even earlier with Norse explorers – and were there when the first Irish and English fishing boats arrived in the 1500s. By the 1700s, there were two types of working dogs on that isolated province off Canada’s east coast, a heavy draft dog called the Greater St John’s Dog, which became the relaxed Newfoundland, and a smaller, smoothcoated, black dog, the Lesser St John’s Dog, adept at retrieving from land and water. Some of these smaller dogs were exported

Yellow can vary from light cream to fox red, while chocolate or liver-coloured Labs range from a light milk chocolate to deep cooking chocolate in colour. Some yellow Labradors have black noses while others have liver-coloured noses, a visual clue that they carry the gene for potentially chocolate coloured pups. Advances in genetics have revealed that a Labrador carries one of nine possible colour genotypes, which can be tested for with a mouth swab. By knowing a mated pair’s colour genotypes it’s possible to predict whether the pups will be all black, all yellow, all chocolate, or mixtures.



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