Ultimate Guide to Golden Retrievers
It's no big surprise that Labrador Retrievers are consistently ranked among the most popular dogs in the United States. Their jovial personalities, even dispositions, and trainability make them the ideal pet for families, and their fierce loyalty and dependability make them welcome pets in any animal lover’s home. They are also the most common guide dogs for the blind in the country. They are a well-balanced breed, which makes them ideal partners for a variety of activities.Labs were first bred in Newfoundland, and they are closely related to the famed Newfoundland dogs from the same location. Labradors generally come in three colors: black, yellow, and chocolate. Chocolates can be anything from medium to deep brown, and yellow Labs can range in color from near white to fox red.General Lab LinksLabs are great dogs for just about any pet lover. Thinking of getting a Lab? Read up on their history, common traits, and temperaments. It’s always best to adopt from animal shelters, but if you’re looking for a purebred Lab, a breeder is the best way to go.
- AKC Information on Labrador Retrievers - check out the AKC's official description of Labs, including regulations for entering your Lab in dog shows
- Labrador Retriever Information - more information about the breed
- Dog Owner's Guide to Labrador Retrievers - find out what's in store for you once you get your Lab
- History of the Labrador Retriever - research the history of the breed and see where the Lab got its start
- Find a Lab on Petfinder - adopting a pet is always the way to go, and Petfinder usually has a great list of Labs available for adoption
- Labrador Retriever Breeders - if you're looking for a purebred lab, a local breeder is the way to go!
Health ProblemsLabs are generally healthy dogs, but are prone to hip dysplasia, which affects the dogs’ skeletal systems. Keeping your dog active and at a healthy weight can help prevent the onset of hip dysplasia --Labs are known to love snacks and lounging on the couch. They are also known to get elbow dysplasia, which can cause pain in the joints and exacerbate arthritis. Progressive retinal atrophy is also a common health problem in Labs, and can cause impaired vision and even blindness. Make sure to schedule regular appointments with your veterinarian to ensure that your Lab lives a long, healthy, happy life!Activities for Labrador RetrieversLabs love to stay active, whether it’s hiking, tackling agility courses or helping with the hunt. If you have a Lab, you and your pup might enjoy some of these activities:
- Working Retriever Central - Labs are a hardworking, diligent breed and relish in events like dog shows and field trials
- United States Dog Agility Association - Labs are one smart breed, so they find the hurdles and ramps of agility competitions to be a fun adventure
- Retriever Field Trials - Does your Lab love being outdoors? Find field trials near you and let your Lab do what it was bred to do
- The Seeing Eye - If you're interested in raising a Lab to be a revered Seeing Eye dog, this is the place to look
- Guide Dogs of America - Labs make fantastic guide dogs
- North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association - Your Lab makes an excellent hunting buddy, so read up on joining a local chapter of NAVHDA if you want to get involved
Labrador Retriever ClubsLove Labs? Join a Labrador Retriever club! There are both national and local clubs for you and your pup to join. Clubs can help you find other Lab lovers, as well as events, dog shows, and helpful information for your Lab. Here are a few to get you started!
- The Labrador Retriever Club
- National Labrador Retriever Club
- The Labrador Retriever Club of Canada
- Mid-Jersey Labrador Retriever Club
- San Diego Labrador Retriever Club
- Huron River Labrador Retriever Club
- Hoosier Labrador Retriever Club
- Miami Valley Labrador Retriever Club
- South Florida Labrador Retriever Club
- Labrador Retriever Club of the Twin Cities
- Labrador Retriever Club of the Potomac
- Labrador Retriever Club of Greater Boston
- Dallas-Fort Worth Labrador Retriever Club
- Puget Sound Labrador Retriever Association
Whether you've got a large family full of kids or are on your own, a Lab is an ideal choice for a pet. They are unwaveringly faithful dogs who will do anything for their owners --or a belly rub! As with any pet, be sure to do plenty of research to make sure your lifestyle can accommodate the fun-loving, free-spirited nature of a Lab. Once you do, you can be sure that you're making the right choice in getting a Labrador!