The Labrador Retriever is one of the best dog breeds that exist, as it has many qualities that make it stand out from the rest, not only for its size but for its great disposition and ability to work, having some beautiful colors in its coat, there is no way that this dog goes unnoticed. Even at a young age, a lab puppy will demonstrate how willing they are to work and help, just keep an eye on him if he ever gets near a water source, such as a lake or even a pond, since this breed belongs and it’s attracted to this element.
THE SECRET BEHIND THIS BREED
First things first, a Labrador might have all you are looking for in a pet but the sad truth is that they won’t remain as a puppy till the end, they are a medium to large-sized breed that reaches an adult height at around six to twelve months of age so they’ll require a proper space to drain his energy and to stay active. If you do not meet the basic needs of this breed it is best not to adopt it as it could be a sad or misunderstood dog. You may have the best intentions but in the end, it will be your pet who will be affected by a selfish feeling.
The Labrador resembles the Golden retriever, both have very similar skills and qualities but their anatomy is one of the things that sets them apart. Both of these breeds are referred to as “retrievers”, this is due to the labor that these dogs are capable of, meaning “rescuer’s” or as the word says, “a retriever”. They might share the shape of the body, the length and they are water dogs, but the Labrador matures at a young age and has a double layer of thick short hair that helps him during his time underwater, between their finger they have a fold that helps them swim better and faster. Their difference might be hard to notice for those that don’t know much about dogs since they even share the same colors as well. In this case, if you plan on adopting one make sure to contact a reputable breeder that has a certificate for every puppy.
This breed comes from Canada, according to data, making its way to Europe after it became one if not the most popular breed in America, only that in Europe is most commonly seen and used for work rather than a family dog, so the shape of the Labrador on that part of the world may differ from the one in America. They are a breed willing to help any human, almost like devotion and mostly a need, being such a sweet, loyal, intellectual, and very attentive, led them as support and guide dogs, hunting and trackers, firefighters or rescue dogs, and family dogs. You should dedicate time every day to this dog or he will become sad and potentially change completely the behavior and temperament that defines them so well. Every unattended breed is prone to become aggressive and sometimes untreatable since they don’t know what a kind gesture is and it may think it would harm him. Fear can disrupt anyone’s mind, so don’t go after this breed just to have one if you won’t take care of it in a proper way.
LAB PUP 101
As I mentioned before, from the get-go the Labrador puppy will follow his ancestor instincts, being curious about everything and grabbing with their mouths everything they can, so don’t be alarm if you find something unexpected at your feet. Besides intellect, they excel in obedience and are a very docile breed making it more than suitable for its purpose, whether as a family member or as a working dog. Take advantage of this lab temperament if you have pups (kids), it’s a win-win scenario. Of course, you still must keep an eye on them since kids tend to be creative at times, but a Labrador being a working/hunter dog, it’s in his nature being so active all the time, as a puppy, it may be of nuisance to you or you won’t be able to handle so much activity, they won’t bite your kids and they can endure every mischievous human activity as long as they get any type of affection. They would both get exhausted and you can do anything you need at the house. Keep in touch with your veterinarian to ensure your lab pup health and with any nutrition tips.
Whether it is potty training or for work, the best recipe you can use is patience and positive reinforcement. Nothing good can come from any harm to any living being, even for humans, the best is to seek help if you are clueless about something or you think things get out of hand. This won’t make you a bad owner, taking care of your new puppy and worrying about him its what makes the difference and you can be sure that he will thank you later with an extreme dose of love and probably some hair. Start any type of training at a young age and you’ll have not even a healthy and handsome dog but he would become extremely educated. This way you don’t have to worry when you take him out with you for a walk or swimming or just sharing with your and his friends, the only way a Labrador pup won’t be accepted anywhere is where they hate dogs or the other pets behavior its the entire opposite. Let everyone know and be jealous of how amazing your puppy is.
Usually, breeders, veterinarians, or in some adoption centers are more than capable of giving you any guidance or point you in the right direction to start caring for this wonderful dog breed. You must start at an early stage correcting any type of behavior and letting your labrador known everything you want and expect from him, creating good habits, this goes for you as well. Maintain discipline to ensure you provide him with the best quality of life you can provide him. Best food and diet to prevent overweight, health care with constant checkings with his vaccines and annual controls, appropriate grooming, and handling of his hair and skin, drying it as best as you can so it won’t get any bad smells or diseases as well as checking constantly his ears.
HEALTH AND NUTRITION
The Labrador puppy training is also for you as an owner, so you better grab your best pencil and notebook an go to the best obedience school you can find. Any good breeder will want to keep his dog herd as one of the best, it should be of his interest to ensure that the pup you adopt gives him some kind of publicity as everyone would want any healthy dog, with a long lifespan and less prone to diseases. They most likely will happily eat rocks if you give it to them, so be extra sure with his daily portion of food to avoid getting an overweight dog, remember you didn’t adopt a dog so you could eat it in a few years so keep him active, to stick to the prescribed diet and don’t let his robust composition deceives you. This would only make them more likely to suffer from diseases that they already are and the treatment would be even more expensive than the puppy itself.
If not fed properly a Labrador, as well as any other dog breed, will present problems as he gowns so stay in touch with your veterinarian as he can provide you the best information regarding his health life, as the overweight I already spoke about it, if possible provide him with the best dog food on the market such as Royal Canin or Hills to ensure the best diet for your puppy. Take advantage of his chewing stage and give him something to bite that it won’t give you a headache like chew toys as they not only be the perfect distraction to secure everything in your house you will help him to keep his teeth as clean as possible to avoid dental diseases. As a water dog, you need to give proper care to his skin and keep a good eye on his ears since it could start any unnecessary and unwanted disease that would become tedious to treat. Skin disorders are also very common on a Labrador so don’t give them more reasons to get ill. At an older age, they are prone to suffer from diseases relating to the locomotor or musculoskeletal system such as osteosarcoma, hip and elbow dysplasia, as well as some eye disorders. Regular controls, clean history, and has no relation or inheritance to certain pathologies will ensure a good life for your dog even though this doesn’t mean that he will not get ill if you are the best of the best for the best breed there is, as life can be hard sometimes but you can be sure that he would be happy with you.
An active dog is a happy Lab, so don’t be lazy and dedicate some time with your dog. Give him monthly baths, comb it twice a week and if you want his hair to be shiny for a long time, about an hour a day would do the trick, you can be sure that your Labrador will be in ecstasy from all this attention. Use veterinary products for bathing as humans are often very harmful to them, don’t try to go over their doctor or the experts. They can get to be smarter than you sometimes, you’ll be surprised.
So there you have it. I hope I covered as much as I could to help you get on track with your labrador retriever puppy. Follow these very simple tips and the ones the rest of the experts give you to ensure he gets the happy life he deserves. You could also get multiple labrador puppies if you think you are up to the task but only do this when experienced and if you can provide them with enough space so they can play and go on about their lives. The Labrador retriever is a gold mine, a masterpiece but it’s not made for every home. In case you live in a small department, you must ensure he gets as many walks as he needs, as well as enough playtime and socialize with him, introduce new friend on his life when you are sure that he won’t get harm or that he won’t harm any other pet or human, its not a natural behavior for a Labrador retriever but you never known. Watch his weight as he grows, remember to return as much love as you can to this dog, as if you could resist after seeing many labrador puppies together. If this doesn’t melt your heart then you my friend, you need some help. As I said before, the labrador puppy gowns in a quick fashion, males usually weigh as much as 77 pounds while females get about 55. For the colors, you can get a chocolate lab, yellow, and black lab, there is also some in white or red.
If you think I’ve missed anything please let me know in the comment section down below.