Labrador Retriever

Labrador Retriever

The Labrador Retriever originates from...

Where the breed derived its name is contested, with some theorising that 'Labrador' comes from the Spanish word for 'labourer,' while others recognise its earlier usage as a fishing dog, utilised off the coast of Labrador and neighbouring Newfoundland in Canada. Here it assisted the Portuguese fishermen in trawling, retrieving fish and retracting the nets. For this reason, popular belief is that the Labrador originated in Newfoundland, where it was highly valued for its willingness and resilience - capable of bracing icy, North Atlantic waters in order to retrieve for the fishermen. The modern Labrador was developed in 19th century England by the efforts of careful breeding under the Duke of Buccleuch's program, and has become one of the most popular breeds in England and the United States. Officially recognised by the Kennel Club in 1903.

The Labrador Retriever is characterised by...

Typically a proportioned and sprightly-looking breed, the Labrador Retriever boasts strong legs, a broad head, medium-sized pendant ears, and wide-set eyes. The coat is hard and short without feathering, coloured black, chocolate or yellow. Whilst the English Labrador is typically quite heavy in appearance, the American Labrador possesses a certain athleticism. The breed has webbed feet to aid in swimming and water crawling. Despite being a country squire at heart, the modern Labrador is adaptable to new situations and people, and is capable of many working fulfillments. Today the breed is observed in hunting, tracking, retrieving, military and police work, search and rescue, competitive obedience, agility and as a guide dog to the blind.

The average Labrador Retriever...

Described as 'the best all-round dog' by the Kennel Club, the Labrador Retriever has enjoyed great popularity throughout its existence, both as a domestic pet and service dog. Inherently gentle, affectionate and obedient, the Labrador is well suited to the home setting, providing its needs for regular exercise, human companionship and mental enrichment are met. A great lover of people, the Labrador is never aggressive, highly strung or an incessant barker, making this the ideal breed choice for families or dedicated sole owners. On average, a healthy Labrador Retriever at full maturity will weigh 25-35 kg depending on its gender, with a life expectancy of 10-12 years.


Relatively healthy, the Labrador Retriever is prone to certain afflictions, ranging from mild to more serious. Mild conditions include skin allergies and easy weight gain, to hip and elbow dysplasia and associated orthopedic complaints, progressive optical disorders, exercise-induced collapse, epilepsy and panosteitis - a condition defined by growing pains.


Our Labrador Retriever owners have uploaded 1946 photos

Our Labrador Retriever owners' thoughts

Added on 25/08/2013
Joined 06/09/2009
From Notts, United Kingdom

Clover is an absolute joy to have. She is quite cheeky but very intelligent and is a quick learner .She does love her food - as one of my friends said " you can teach them many things but never the meaning of the word full ", to that end we do feed her a diet food to keep her weight down. She is a very friendly dog who loves her walks in any weather so a good set of waterproofs is a must!

Added on 18/10/2013
Joined 16/10/2013
From West Midlands, United Kingdom

Molly has transformed my life - I have many doggie friends now with human owners! She is definitely "Top Dog" in our household with three of us at her beck and call! Molly loves swimming, sleeping, playing and food but not in that particular order. She is a joy to own.

Added on 18/11/2013
Joined 11/03/2012
From Essex, United Kingdom

I could not recommend Labradors more as a great family pet, loyal ,loving and naughty!! Max comes into schools with me to teach kids responsible pet ownership. He loves his job, his aim for the sessions is to get as much hair on the carpet as possible, as many cuddles as he can and to make me look as much of a fool as poosible!!

Added on 27/02/2014
Joined 12/09/2013
From Northamptonshire, United Kingdom

Labradors are such an easy going breed, I have now taken delivery of my third lab and we have all fallen in love with the puppy. My old boy - 13 years old - is not impressed but still puts up with the youngster hanging off his jowls and annoying him. They are such a friendly breed to own and trustworthy with the children.

Added on 07/09/2014
Joined 01/02/2013
From South Yorkshire, United Kingdom

Charlie is a 9 year old yellow retriever. She has a fantastic character. Her temperament is great our grandchildren roll around on the floor with her, she loves it. She was diagnosed with diabetes nearly two years ago. We have good control on it. She is one of the most loving , loyal , clever , mischievous , fun loving dog I have owned . But I think she owns us really .

Added on 04/07/2015
Joined 02/07/2015
From North Ayrshire, United Kingdom

Her name is Skye, she will be 5 years old in October, she is a black Labrador Retriever and she's my best pal. She is my 4th Lab over the years, and I can't see past them. She is everyone's friend, my Grandsons adore her, she loves walks in all sorts of weather, is a good eater and loves cuddles on the couch in the evening. I talk to her all the time and she knows everything I say. Labs are very clever dogs.

Added on 03/08/2015
Joined 28/03/2012
From Dorset, United Kingdom

I have a beautiful non neutered male Lab called Jasper. He has genetic immune disorders that I wasnt aware of as he came to me second hand at an early age. He has hip and elbow dysplasia along with Deep Pyoderma skin eruptions. I love him to bits and he is insured luckily as none of this came to light until recently. I would suggest you get your pet insured for a life term policy as you never know when you need to claim.The dog himself is doing fine and I am now trying homeopathic remedies from him from a local company called Dorwest vetinary for some complimentary medication.
He is an extremely loyal dog and of a lovely soft temperment. Not a bad thing about him and an excellent family dog to choose if you are looking for a gentle breed.

Added on 30/01/2016
Joined 28/05/2013
From Essex, United Kingdom

our maysie is such a fantastic dog,she knows when your down and comes to you for a cuddle.she is 10 last week,hopefully we will have a few more years with her.

Added on 07/03/2016
Joined 07/03/2016
From Hants, United Kingdom

Basil,my yellow Labrador is a beautiful boy.
He has the typical Lab temperament,very loving,soppy & most of all,loves his food.
He has been caught on various occasions,wearing the lid of our rubbish bin!

He loves his walks with his friends,especially if the owner has a tasty morsel in their pocket!

I think Labs are brilliant as family pets.

Basil has a heart murmur & did have itchy skin until I put him on a raw food diet.He is now much better.

Added on 03/04/2016
Joined 19/03/2016
From Hertfordshire, United Kingdom

I have 3 Labrador totally adored to bits. They are brother and sister Leo and Lucy aged 11 years 7 months and are Chocolate. Leo is quite completely devoted to me and is beautiful and stands up to his show breed pedigree. He is playful and loves to sleep on my lap. Lucy well she is completely mad and very energetic even at her age. She just adores people and has and knows far more people than l do. She had her right front leg amputated August 2015 and is back doing all the things she did before and full of life and energy. She is quite a thief when your not looking and will eat anything she finds like socks. soft indoor collars which result's in a visit to the vets for an injection to retrieve the collars we do not use indoor collars anymore. She is a wonderful dog very affectionate and loveable totally mad but could not live without her. I am so proud of her for the way she has accepted having only 3 legs and gone through having this aggressive bone tumor in her leg and the chemo she is having but she never lets it get her down. She also swims at the royal veterinary colleges hydrotherapy pool and really loves it Great dog.
Then there is baby Ola yellow bitch aged 3 years 11 months old. She is a field trials dog and known lovingly as wild child. She can.jump any gate she can run faster than a greyhound and will retrieve anything from the garden and bring it in. She is shy at first of people she doesn't know. But the most lively dog i have had but she is also very loving and likes to sleep on your lap or propped up aside of you. My three beautiful babies.

Added on 12/06/2016
Joined 25/04/2016
From United Kingdom

Denver literally is my rock, my boy! He has the kindest heart and the most beautiful soul. He may be a gundog by breed, but he's anything but that. He has had a baby squirrel hold his nose in the woods, a baby rabbit too exhausted to run, and he just sniffed at it and left it alone. A tiny Mistlethrush out of the nest on the ground, again he just sniffed at it and let it be. I am proud to be Denver's owner, he has taught me so much about life and how it can be lived in the moment! Times when I could barely raise a smile, he'll do something and I'm in fits of real 'belly laughs'. I love him, respect him, honor him every single day. I am so grateful for him in my life...............

Added on 21/10/2016
Joined 20/09/2016
From Oxfordshire, United Kingdom

We have a black lab, lazy happy loving dog. We also have a golden lab. Nightmare. We have had 4 washing machines this year. All the cupboards have no handles but still he empties my cupboards. He has got through child locks. He was caged but we watched on a camera getting out of the cage and locking the black one in. Brillaint out on a lead

Added on 07/12/2016
Joined 01/11/2016
From Cornwall, United Kingdom

Tressa is our 3rd black lab. She is queen of her castle. Looking down on all her human minion's, only lowering herself to speak when it suits her ha ha ha. She's deff an only dog my daughter now has our other lab & chug as tressy didn't like to be disturbed by them playing

Added on 24/01/2017
Joined 24/01/2017
From East Riding of Yorkshire, United Kingdom

Dylan is such an intelligent and loving dog. Highly energetic but will climb up to the settee and fall asleep with his head on my chest. Interestingly, as a side effect of owning Dylan, my blood pressure has dropped to a normal healthy level (without any intervention from my GP!). Another great reason to own a Labrador! He's so affectionate and sociable around other dogs and very receptive to training. He's a much loved part of the family.

Added on 15/04/2017
Joined 15/04/2017
From Rhondda Cynon Taff, United Kingdom

I have a black lab Marley he's a lovely dog the only thing is he sometimes runs away so I'm having him neutered after 3 years

Added on 01/07/2017
Joined 20/04/2016
From Hampshire, United Kingdom

Rosie is my 28 kilo wannabe lap dog! She is the sweetest natured dog I have ever known and is desperate to be friends with everyone!

Added on 10/08/2017
Joined 31/01/2017
From Leicestershire, United Kingdom

We had our Powser at 8 months old from Guide Dogs (he didn't go into training due to operation for elbow displacia). He is such a gentle giant, lovely with our gchildren and so kind and loving. Such a lot has been given to him by the GD Puppy Walker, he is so obedient and easy to be with, loves saying hello to people and other dogs. He really is part of our family so we really do look after him with Royal Canin and you move tablets. That's why he has always a beautiful shiny healthy coat

Added on 29/11/2017
Joined 29/11/2017
From Berkshire, United Kingdom

I have two labs, an 11 year old black lab Harley and a 5 year old choccie Indie. They have amazing temperaments and are always together. They love walks and battle to sit on my lap at night, I usually end up with both of them perched on me.

Added on 08/01/2018
Joined 21/03/2016
From West Lothian, United Kingdom

I don’t think there can be a more friendly breed of dog with my children and grandchildren. Abby is 13 now,has had a M C T, removed so she is at the end of her expected life but she is a fighter. I will mis her as a sole mate.

Added on 31/01/2018
Joined 19/10/2014
From Cornwall, United Kingdom

Nero is a absolute joy to own. He loves his food and walks. We live in Cornwall so he gets to walk in the countryside and the beach. He is friendly towards people and other dogs. He loves water and will go swimming at any opportunity! He goes everywhere where his nose takes him. He loves to play and help in the garden! He is a black show type Labrador. He is very handsome. We love him to bits

Added on 27/10/2018
Joined 12/02/2018
From Hertfordshire, United Kingdom

Black gun dog type lab Hattie is my pride and joy and my constant companion. Super bright, bouncy, loving and a real mischief maker. At 10 months she’s a bit of a teenager but I can’t resist those soulful, expressive eyes no matter how naughty she is. She loves everyone to distraction and is a terrible thief (food, socks and shoes in that order). I would always recommend a Labrador to anyone who has the energy to keep up.

Added on 28/11/2018
Joined 03/09/2016
From West Midlands, United Kingdom

Labradors are the ideal family pet: friendly, bouncy, lovable. They have the gun-dog's steady nerves, the retriever's 'soft mouth', and intelligence. Just don't overfeed (never be suckered by those beautiful eyes!) and be firm with training during the early months. Then you will have the perfect loving companion. Honey has the sweetest temperament and is gentle with my young grandchildren. She's my 4th Lab and I'd never have another breed.
A word of warning: always ask the breeder for hip & elbow scores and eye health certificates. If we all do this, the rogue breeders will go out of business and we won't see crippled dogs limping around the park. If the breeder hesitates, don't touch the puppies, however cute!

Added on 03/01/2019
Joined 22/07/2016
From Suffolk , United Kingdom

Mabel is a gorgeous chocolate Labrador who is two and three quarters. We got her from a friend of a friend whose bitch had had her first litter. I met her at three weeks took her home at eight without a whimper. She knew she was mine. I needed to get fit as my husband is disabled. She is careful and considerate with him but runs very fast with her friends on the heath for two hours a day. She makes sure the whole group is ok. We later rescued a Yorkie/westie x who is older but they are great companions. There couldn't be a more adaptable breed

Added on 10/02/2019
Joined 10/02/2019
From Angus, United Kingdom

Marley is a gorgeous black Labrador they make brilliant family pets he’s full of life and loves cuddles and meeting new people especially of they have a biscuit I would definitely recommend having a Labrador they bring so much love and happiness into the family home they do need a lot of exercise and be careful on how much you feed them as there’s far to many overweight labs going about

Added on 15/05/2019
Joined 21/02/2017
From Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

Theo is nearly 13yrs-he was born in France so has a tattooed mark on his ear,he lived with us in France til 2013 when we moved back to uk- they are a wonderful breed and he was our 3rd Labrador-we also now have Bonnie and Clyde 2 3/4 who are completely different in characters and mad as hatters, poor theo who has arthritic back legs and one front leg gets knocked over trying to act young and silly!

Added on 17/06/2019
Joined 16/09/2018
From Herefordshire, United Kingdom

Beautiful loyal family dogs.
They will eat anything !!!!

Added on 05/12/2019
Joined 05/12/2019
From United Kingdom

Absolutely love my girl, I adore her so much
The love and affection I get is unconditional
I’d be lost with her and her sister
So gentle and kind and totally trust her with my young kids

Added on 08/01/2020
Joined 08/01/2020
From Bedfordshire, United Kingdom

Ollie has brought us so much joy,love and laughter. He is an adorable character. Labradors are a great breed of Dog. The best !

Added on 16/01/2020
Joined 09/10/2012
From Lincolnshire, United Kingdom

Tigga was nearly returned by me to the rescue centre I got her from . Aged 13 months, she thought it was great to jump all over the kitchen worktops, steal food continually empty the water bowl and need to go out every hour as a result. However I was told "that was the dog that was in a cage overnight". I decided to give her a second chance, and worked out she had been in the cage all the time with no access to food or water, hence her behaviour. She had to sleep in the bathroom and stay there if I went really was the only safe place for her. Like Marley of film fame she tried to eat her way out through the plasterboard....unsuccessfully. I took her to training classes and persevered with her, keeping her with me as much as possible and taking her and our other 3 dogs for long woodland walks. She was always from day one superb at recall.
Tigga is a beautiful, black girl who loves everyone she meets and is loved in return by all who know her. She has helped a neighbour who has dementia. Sadly she went completely blind at Christmas 2018, but does not let this hold her back. She had been preparing for this by sniffing around much more than usual in ther months beforehand; most people do not realise that she cannot see. Three months ago she was diagnosed with early onset Kidney Disease. At present she is doing well on Virbac KD food from our vet. I love her to bits and can't imagine life without my darling, whom I hope to keep for another couple of years if all goes well. I could not wish for a better dog ....unless it is Trumble her 9 year old companion Labrador. They are both marvellous.

Added on 13/03/2020
Joined 29/06/2008
From United Kingdom

1 of the best breeds I've had x very loyal, perfect with my children and a big softie x love my girl even if she is a dope lol 😂

Added on 27/04/2020
Joined 20/04/2020
From Kent, United Kingdom

After 40 years of collie X dogs at the age of 70,s we re homed a 3year old Lab, he is the most gentlest,loyal, sensitive and loving dog, but the laziest dog we have ever had ; ) He fits into our life perfectly, willing to go off for a long walks or just lazing about, just happy to be with us, he's six now and has started get a bit stiff in his hind legs (like us) so have started him on You Move, hopefully that will help.

Added on 12/01/2021
Joined 06/11/2015
From perthshire, United Kingdom

I never had a dog before we got Zag (black labrador) who passed away on 9th January this year 1 week before his 15th birthday. He became my best friend, confidant and a pleasure to know. Kind gentle and always pleased to see you. I would thoroughly recommend a labrador as a family pet and companion. Always loved and sorely missed.