Labrador Retriever (Black) Adopt a Labrador Retriever (Black) Today!
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Labrador Retriever (Black)

Origin: Pedigrees of the modern Lab exist back to 1878, making it one of the oldest recognized breeds. Believed to have originated on the island of Newfoundland, which is now part of Canada, it is thought that the Lab is the result of selective breeding between the now-extinct St. John's Water Dog, the Newfoundland, and native water dogs. Initially called the Lesser Newfoundland or the St. John's Dog, the Earl of Malmesbury and other English breeders gave it the name Labrador to avoid confusion with other breeds. Today, the English and American lines are somewhat different; the English type is shorter and stockier, while American breeding creates a dog of a bigger frame.

Other Names Body Type Personality Coat Health Concerns

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Labrador or Lab

AKC Group: Sporting

Breed Club: Labrador Retriever Club, Inc.

Rescue Club: Labrador Retriever Club Rescue

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Body Type:

Labs are a larger breed; on average males weigh 60 to 80 pounds, and females 45 to 70 pounds. They have stocky, solid bodies with webbed toes and an otter-like tail, which acts as a rudder, for swimming assistance.


True Labrador Retriever temperament is as much a hallmark of the breed as the "otter" tail. The ideal disposition is one of a kindly, outgoing, tractable nature; eager to please and non-aggressive towards man or animal. The Labrador has much that appeals to people; their gentle ways, intelligence and adaptability make him an ideal dog. Aggressiveness towards humans or other animals, or any evidence of shyness in an adult should be severely penalized.


Their fur is short, straight and thick, with an undercoat for water repellency. They shed moderately throughout the year. Their coats come in black, yellow and chocolate, in that order of frequency and popularity. It is possible to have all three colors within a single litter. Very pale variations of chocolate and yellow are sometimes called "silver" however, they are not officially recognized.

Health Concerns:

The average life expectancy of a Lab is 12 to 13 years; they are a generally healthy breed with few major problems. However, some of the more frequent health issues are:
  • Hip & Elbow Dysplasia - for this reason, hip scores are strongly recommended before breeding or purchasing a Lab.
  • Ear Infections - because their floppy ears trap moist air, however, these are usually easily controlled.
  • Obesity - because of their unashamed enjoyment of food, Labs are often over-fed. Excessive weight increases the chances of hip dysplasia, diabetes and arthritis.
  • Eye Diseases - Progressive Retinal Atrophy & Retinal Dysplasia can sometimes affect Labs. Breeders will often sell puppies that have been pre-checked for such disorders.
  • Skin Tumors - usually non-life-threatening and can be removed if necessary.
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Tasty Tidbits:

  • The Labrador Retriever is the most popular breed of dog in the United States and England
  • Known worldwide for their intelligent, enthusiastic and sociable personalities, Labs are fabulous as companions and working dogs alike

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