The ever-faithful Lab has always been a family favourite amongst Australians and this ‘easy to train’ pooch has been employed as a customs, service, retrieving, detecting and guide dog.
Labradors are a sporting breed developed in Newfoundland in North America where they made useful workers for fisherman. Their ancestors were known as the St. John’s water dog. A Lab’s coat is dense and mildly water resistant. They helped fisherman tow nets and were used to working in Arctic conditions. Luckily, their thick undercoat does not pose a problem with grooming. A quick daily brush is all they need.
When the sweet natured breed was taken to the U.K. Labradors were a popular gun dog and were handy for retrieving birds. Their devotion was quickly recognised and they made faithful companions for all manner of owners. Although Labs don’t always appear the most ‘visually agile’ of breeds they are still strong and have a substantial exercise requirement. It is not until later life you might expect them to slow down. Even though some are more rowdy than others, they all thrive on stimulation and activity. You may have to choose when to end play sessions because they are willing to play until exhaustion.
Labradors are usually very social dogs with both humans and animals. Labs thrive best being a part of interaction, one of the many reasons they are suited to living with families. Occasionally they can be as clumsy as a bull in a china shop so it might be an idea to place your fancy ornaments perched a little higher.
Rapid growth in their first year can make Labs susceptible to bone disorders, and as the dog ages, joints, hips or elbows may need some medical attention. Owners also need to check their Labs ears regularly.
Chocolate, black or yellow? All colours of pups can appear in a single litter!! Wow, how Labradorable.
Leah & Angela O’Meara
Hound Dog Day Care (Specialists in Dog Minding & Dog Boarding, Pet Sitting Brisbane & Doggy Day Care Brisbane)