by: Courtney Roberts
The gentle, intelligent and family-friendly Labrador Retriever continues to be the most popular breed in the United States according to the American Kennel Club registration statistics. Devotion to this breed runs deep; Labs are loving, people-oriented dogs who are eager to please their families and will win your heart with just a blink of an eye. For the most part, Labs are easy-going and pretty laid back and will do almost anything with you along your side. Homes with younger children are usually recommended for your Labrador companion, as they are known to play well with kids; they’ll entertain for hours and vice versa. On the other end, some retrievers are known for working in the field or duck hunting in the waters. Because of their high energy and determination, they make great companions when it comes to putting in great working effort. Training for this is fairly easy, as long as it stays consistent and at an early age. The upkeep for this breed does not require very much as far as grooming, besides the sweeping you’ll have to do in the house because of all the shedding! The sleek and easy-care coat has two layers: a short, thick, straight topcoat, and a soft, weather-resistant undercoat. So for those that are concerned about the Labs sitting outside in the kennels all day, do not worry, for the two-layer coat protects them from the cold and wet, which helps in the role as a retriever for hunters. These dogs also excel as guide dogs for the blind, as part of search-and-rescue teams or in narcotics detection with law enforcement. This is an all around great choice of a furry companion because of how good they interact with kids & other pets and their great obedience with training.
The most common types of issues that Labs tend to suffer from are joint and bone problems, in addition to hip dysplasia, thus, OFA certification of parents is a must as is CERF registration for clear eyes.
In conclusion, if you are searching for a new pet to bring into your family, adopt a Lab and he/she will make it worth your while!