Many of us appreciate our dogs because they are friendly companions but there are some that are just naturally friendlier than others. The Labrador retriever is one of those breeds and it is not only fantastic for the family, it is a wonderful dog for individuals as well. It was bred to be a companion and it is also a dog that is useful as a working dog in some circumstances.
Originally, the Labrador retriever was bred to work as a helper to fisherman in the cold waters of the North Atlantic. It could be seen jumping into the water at a moment’s notice, grabbing ropes, hauling in nets and retrieving fish. It’s a good-natured dog that is hard-working but it also isn’t afraid to curl up and take a nap as well. Today, Labrador retrievers are still used in the cold waters but more than likely, they are used as a hunting dog or a companion.
Labrador Retriever Personality
As a friendly dog, the Labrador retriever is one of the kinder breeds and it lives up to this reputation on a very consistent basis. They are loving to all family members, great with children and perfect when there are other pets in the home.
The kind personality of the Labrador goes hand-in-hand with the intelligence that they possess. Labs tend to be very easy to train and they will readily go along with any training program that you may put into place. They tend to be an active dog, so keeping them active with training is always a good idea.
Labrador Retriever Health
For the most part, Labradors tend to be healthy animals but there are certain health conditions that they may face as they get older. This is not the case with all labs, but knowing the possibilities can help you to watch out for any of these problems.
Dysplasia – Some of the hereditary conditions that are experienced by Labradors include both hip and elbow dysplasia. This particular problem could lead to lameness in the dog and at the very least, could display itself in severe discomfort as they age. If you notice any signs of dysplasia, it is important to get them veterinary care right away.
OCD – Labradors do tend to be a little bit on the neurotic side but in this particular case, we are talking about an orthopedic condition that is caused by issues in the way that the cartilage grows in the joints. It can lead to pain and stiffness and may appear early in life.
Other health problems can include epilepsy, cataracts and myopathy. Keep a close eye on any health problems that your Labrador experiences and ensure that they get the care that they need.
Taking Care of Your Labrador Retriever
Labradors are wonderful animals but they do need some interaction or they could show some destructive traits. If you are able to care for the dog by giving them the interaction they need, you will find that you have a wonderful animal that is there for you through thick and thin.