Labrador Retriever

ANIMAL:
Labrador Retriever Canis familiaris

Type of Animal:
Canine

Habitat:
Homes, urban/suburban/rural areas, pretty much anywhere they can adapt

Location(s):
Worldwide-originated in E Canada & UK

Appearance:
Usually come in yellow, black, & chocolate sometimes silver, medium-large dogs, short dense coat, broad head w/ slightly pronounced eyebrows, medium length muzzle, broad strong tail, webbed toes, can be stocky or lighter-framed

Food/Diet:
Dog food, kibble, rice, meat, eggs, milk, poultry, fish, shellfish, fruit, oatmeal, peanut butter, pasta, vegetables, legumes, root/tuber vegetables, greens, melons, berries, carrion, mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles

Status in Wild:
Domesticated

Lifestyle:
Social breed, often living in pairs or small packs

Additional Info:

Called:
Male: Dog
Female: Bitch
Young: Puppy
Group: Pack

Weight:
Male: 65-80 lbs
Female: 55-70 lbs
Young: 12 lbs

Gestation:
2 months 

Life Span:
10-14 years

Height:
Male: 1.875-2.04 ft
Female: 1.79-1.95 ft

Body Length:
Male: 3.5 ft
Female: 3 ft

Tail Length:
0.9 ft, same for both sexes

Main predators are bears, wild canids, feral dogs, crocodilians, large raptors, large snakes, & wild felids.
 
Originated in Newfoundland in 1500s-originally bred w/ Newfoundlands creating Lesser Newfoundlands or St. John’s Water Dogs. Originally used for bringing back fish that fell off fishing hooks. St. John’s Water Dogs became extinct in 1980s but acted as ancestors to Labs as well as other modern retrievers.
 
1st imported to England in early 1800s.
 
Most popular dogs in US, Canada, UK, Australia, New Zealand, & Israel.
 
They’re very affectionate & friendly dogs.
 
Most common breed used as guide/service/therapy dogs as well.
 
2nd Earl of Malmesbury bred them for waterfowl hunting/retrieving in early 1800s.
 
3rd Earl of Malmesbury, 6th Duke of Buccleuch, & 12th Earl of Home collaborated to develop modern lab. 2 males given by Malmesbury to Buccleuch bred w/ females carrying blood from those originally imported by 5th Duke of Buccleuch & 10th Earl of Home.
 
Not known to be good guard dogs.
 
Commonly used in hunting, search & rescue, police work, detection, & military work.
 
Commonly mixed w/ many other dog breeds.

Fun Fact(s):
1st dog to detect diabetic episodes was yellow lab named Armstrong 1st trained in 2003.
 
Led Zeppelin song “Black Dog” actually named after Black Lab wandering around Headley Grange studio while recording album Led Zeppelin IV.
 
Due to powerful noses, they’ve been able to sniff out/identify early stages of cancer.
 
In 1981, black lab mix Bosco won honorary mayoral election of Sunol, California & was honorary mayor until death in 1994.
Yellow Lab, Labrador Retriever, Ginger, family dog from 2004-2018, RIP, photo by my mom Deborah Lader

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