A Guide to Labradors
Labradors are one of the most popular family pets, read our guide to find out how to care for them properly.
Originally bred to retrieve nets for fishermen in Newfoundland Canada, and later to retrieve fowl and game for hunters. The Labrador Retriever is now one of the most popular pets in the UK and around the world.
The breed benefits from the positive character traits of being reliable, trustworthy, good-natured and dependable. This has led to their reputation as being great family pets. Labradors are very sociable and loyal by nature, forming great friendships with their owners. One thing that does need to be noted when owning a retriever is that they require a lot of exercise, this is due to their high energy levels as well as their large appetite.
Labradors come from an active background and being a larger breed they do require a bit more food than most breeds. However, it’s essential that with the high amount of food they engulf it’s matched with a high amount of exercise. This can result in many labradors becoming overweight. To make sure that they receive the right amount of nutrients it’s advised that you feed them a mix of meats and kibble.
As a puppy, they’ll require more feeding times compared to when they’re fully grown. This is due to them growing at a much quicker rate for growth. Although they’ll need to be fed more frequently it should be smaller portions averaging 4 meals a day from 8 weeks to 3 months, 3 meals a day from 3 months to 6 and 2 meals from thereafter.
Labrador retrievers are known for their fun-loving easily excitable nature. They love to play around whether it’s chasing a stick, a ball or their own tail. These high energy dogs need a lot of exercise but also a high amount of mental stimulation due to their high intelligence levels. Without this, they can easily become bored and have a tenancy to misbehave.
As much as they love to play they equally enjoy love and affection from their owners. They adore attention from people as well as other dogs so it’ll be no surprise if they’re lying on their backs requesting a belly rub every now and again.
Are labradors good for families?
Known as America’s most popular breed, the labrador is the perfect choice of breed for any family. With their amazing intellect, high energy and affectionate personality the labrador makes a great dog for people with families, large, small new and old. Their caring nature allows them to be great with young children with the energy to be played with for hours on end. They are also very sociable so are more than happy to be put with other animals and breeds whether that’s in the home or out on walks.
Exercise and training
Labradors require a lot of exercises both mentally and physically to keep fit and avoid tenancies of becoming overweight and unhealthy. When in puppy stages it is recommended that they have around 2 hours of exercise a day and when they become adults this can be reduced to around an hour.
As they’re very sociable dogs it’s ideal for them to go on walks to dog parks and other popular dog walking areas, it’s also a good idea to organise play dates for your dog to keep them happy and entertained.
Labradors are used for their abilities for roles such as sniffer dogs, guide dogs and assistance dogs due to their high level of intelligence and ease of training. They’re very food motivated and love to play, so to them, training is just another game.
Labradors have a short and thick coat, designed to dry quickly. Sadly with this short dense coat comes a lot of shedding. If left ungroomed you can end up with a lot of dog hair around the house which can trigger allergies for many people. You can reduce the amount of malting with regular brushing. Apart from their hair, Labradors are rather low maintenance. Although, due to their playful behaviour have a tendency to jump into water and roll in mud which will then require a well-needed bath to clean them up.
Where can I get a bed for my labrador?
By Raised By Humans