Written by Anna Hollisey
We LOVE labradors! They’re sunny, playful, kind, and obsessed with snacks. Here’s why your next BFF should be a Labrador Retriever…
Oddly enough, the Labrador was bred in Newfoundland to retrieve ducks. With a water-resistant coat and pleasant nature, it was a perfect companion for the solitary hunter or fisherman. No surprise that visiting English aristocrats noticed the breed’s potential and took Labrador pups home to England in the late nineteenth century. The English Kennel Club registered the breed in 1903 and the American Kennel Club in 1917.
The Labrador comes with impressive credentials. This breed topped the AKC’s bestseller charts for 30 years – losing first place to the French Bulldog in 2022! (We get it – Frenchies are awesome too.) What endeared lovely Labradors to the American public?
First, they’re playful, happy dogs. They love a walk – especially if they get to play ‘fetch’ and romp around smelling all the smells. Their personality is affectionate, gentle and kind, so they’ll soon make friends with all the neighbors (…and their dogs). Labradors are some of the best family dogs because they’re very adaptable and good with children.
Thought they were daft? Think again. Labradors are smart and trainable. You’re unlikely to see them winning Crufts (they’re just not very competitive) but you might see them working as therapy dogs at your local hospice or school. It’s well-known that Labradors are exceptionally tolerant and eager to please. They love to learn a new trick.
Of course, they have one very famous personality trait… and that’s the way their eyes light up when they’re watching you eat. Labradors love their food and they’ll do anything for a high-value treat.
Their personalities are truly sparkling. But if you’re thinking about getting a Labrador, there are some practical things to consider, too.
According to the American Kennel Club, the breed ranges between 55-70lb for a female and 65-80lb for a male. Visit the dog park and you’ll see that, due to widespread breeding and popularity, Labradors come in all sizes and shades. The best way to get an estimate on your pup’s future weight is to see both parents: are they athletic… or verging on giant? If you prefer a smaller dog, pick a female.
Ready for more Labrador-love? They made it into our lists of top breeds for active families, best breeds for country living, and the most trainable breeds. Easiest dogs to care for? They made it onto that chart, too!