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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,' and others recognising its earlier usage as a fishing dog, utilised off the coast of Labrador and neighbouring Newfoundland in Canada, helping Portuguese fishermen to trawl, retrieve fish and retract the nets. For this reason, popular belief is that the Labrador originated in Newfoundland, being 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, being capable of many working fulfillments; today the Labrador 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.

Because no breed is without its weakness...

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 657 photos

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Our Labrador Retriever owners' thoughts

25th Aug 2013
Helen Bunton
  • VioVet Customer Since: September 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!

18th Oct 2013
Lynn Carolan
  • VioVet Customer Since: October 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.

18th Nov 2013
Sarah Moran
  • VioVet Customer Since: March 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!!

23rd Jan 2014
Elizabeth Fortune
  • VioVet Customer Since: August 2013
  • From: Durham, United Kingdom

Meg is a beautiful dog, inside and out! Loyal, loving, obedient and always ready for a walk or a cuddle on the sofa. She is a great companion but never causes a problem if left home alone. Easy to train, loves to learn and rarely needs a lead. I honestly cannot think of one negative thing to say about her, we adore her. Someone once told me that Labradors are born half trained and spaniels die half trained - some truth in that!

27th Feb 2014
Jayne Jones
  • VioVet Customer Since: September 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.

7th Sep 2014
Lee Darwin
  • VioVet Customer Since: February 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 .

12th Jun 2015
Judith Young
  • VioVet Customer Since: June 2015
  • From: France

Alys was a rescue dog from the local SPA in France. She'd been badly beaten and starved, and fed rubbish to such a degree that the vet had no idea of her age. Her date of birth on here is actually her date of adoption by two mad Scots who love to walk in the woods.

She has a gentle character like most Labs and loves children, but she has seen off a couple of burglars. The sight of an angry barking lab is apparently very scary...LOL.

4th Jul 2015
Carol Parker
  • VioVet Customer Since: July 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.

3rd Aug 2015
Jon Walker
  • VioVet Customer Since: March 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.

13th Oct 2015
Judith Young
  • VioVet Customer Since: June 2015
  • From: France

Alys was a rescue dog.We found each other when she was approx 13 months old, badly beaten and scared of entering houses. She still had a spark inside her and we had the priviledge of owning the best dog we've ever had. There may have been another race in her mix but she looked like a pure Canadian Labrador which are quite common in France. If you have small children and want a loving protector, a dog to run with you in the woods and love all of your family unconditionally...that is a Labrador. We shall miss her...she died in the middle of August of a heart attack, we'd had her company for nearly eleven years. There is a dog shaped hole in our hearts.

30th Jan 2016
Mr Colin New
  • VioVet Customer Since: May 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.

7th Mar 2016
Ann Marczak
  • VioVet Customer Since: March 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.

3rd Apr 2016
Sandra Miss Lewis
  • VioVet Customer Since: March 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.

12th Jun 2016
Mr Malcolm Buckley
  • VioVet Customer Since: April 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...............

21st Oct 2016
Brenda Williams
  • VioVet Customer Since: September 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

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