Labrador Retriever – Energy and Generosity
Energy and enthusiasm, maintaining a joyful outlook on life, curiosity and exploration, working in the service of others, across many industries, needing to be able to expend your energy, needing outlets for your creativity and problem solving abilities, finding yourself prone to hyperactivity or even destructiveness if your energy is poorly channelled, energy, excesses of energy, being prone to over-eating, needing discipline and boundaries, needing a job to do, being capable of great kindness, generosity and gentleness, loyalty, love, popularity, beware of exploitation.
The Labrador retriever, usually called Labrador (or lab) is a member of the retriever family, and a gundog. They are one of the world’s most popular breeds of dog, as well as one of the most popular assistance dog breeds. Their ancestors were from Newfoundland, Canada, and they were derived from the St. John’s Water Dog. These days they come in yellow, chocolate or black; traditionally they were a lot more golden, and ‘fox red’ Labradors were bred in the 1980s. They are quite capable in the water, even having webbed paws. They are medium to large dogs, with males weighing 29-41 kilos and females 25-33 kilos. Heavier Labradors are considered obese, but aren’t uncommon due to their love of food. They have short, straight hair, a strong tail, and are a solid dog in both musculature and frame. They have an incredible sense of smell. They have soft mouths, and Labradors can carry an egg in their mouth without breaking it. Conformation, or ‘show’ Labradors are stockier and more calm than their energetic, lean Field or ‘working line’ Labrador counterparts. They are becoming increasingly divergent with time, and debates have arisen that suggest it may be necessary to divide the two types of Labrador into new breeds of dog.
They are usually highly energetic, highly intelligent and biddable, water-enthusiastic and good at catch/retrieve activities. They are notably good with children, the elderly and can be used as therapy dogs; particularly if well-socialised from birth. Typically they are trusting, and not especially territorial or noisy. Their temperament is generally pleasant, curious, boisterous, outgoing and kind. They love company and need to be a member of their family. Poorly socialised and under-exercised Labradors can be hyperactive and become very problematic. They are not suited to being outside dogs. They love many activities, and are particularly suited for agility, retrieval, scent and retrieve and many other activities. Labradors are also noted for being a contributor to the ‘designer dog’ the ‘labradoodle,’ which has created a swathe of other designer dogs often bred in very poor circumstances (and often mixed with poodles). The labradoodle was initially designed to be an intelligent, low-allergen assistance dog, but mostly failed in execution. Like many purebred dogs, they are prone to health issues such as joint dysplasia and issues, eye problems, and other issues as well.