When you bring home playful and bouncy dogs, it does not take long for them to become a part of your family. Dogs are simply the most ideal companions who never fail to brighten up your day.
One such breed that takes no time from being a newly brought canine to the most favorite part of the clan is Labrador. Even if you do not have a Labrador, you must have come across them on the streets or at an acquaintance’s place. After all, this sunshine of a breed with its floppy ears, broad head, and big expressive eyes is quite hard to overlook.
While this breed has plenty of positive values and traits, we all know how wrong it is to expect someone to be perfect. As a pup, Labradors can get a little rowdy and spirited. They also take their time to mature and can start showing signs of separation anxiety if they are left alone for long periods of time at home a few times.
So, does it mean you shouldn’t bring a Labrador breed home? Or, are the positive characteristics of the breed enough to make Labradors good family dogs? Let’s find out.
Are Labradors good for beginners?
Getting their first dog home can get a little overwhelming for many. No doubt, it is a lot of responsibility. However, it is not really as scary as it is anticipated to be.
When thinking about getting your first dog, you don’t have any right or wrong breed. It all boils down to a few factors such as a dog’s trainability, sociability, and exercise requirements among other things when it comes to choosing the one for you. Yet, in terms of energy and your lifestyle, there are a few breeds that are easier to take care of, especially when you are a beginner.
Labradors for first time pet parents
Labradors are one of the most friendly, people-oriented, and good-natured breeds. Since they are easy to train with the right training methods, such as positive reinforcement, they are quite popular with first-timers.
Labradors are quite gentle and calm. So, if you have newborns or toddlers at your house, Labradors can prove to be a fantastic companion for them as they grow up. They tend to become inseparable.
Labradors shed a lot. A small belly rubbing session will surprise you with all those hair all over you. They are also an energetic breed and require exercise in abundance. It’s best to bring home a Labrador if you can give them your attention and time. A lot of it.
If dogs exercise well in their daily routine, including mental stimulation activities, they may gradually stop their undesirable behavior. These include separation anxiety, leash pulling, or biting, making it less challenging for you to have them at your home.
How is a Labrador helpful to humans?
Labradors are more human than most humans.
A Lab is considered to be one of the most helpful and emotional dog breeds.
Labradors are often the first choice for service dogs that are known to help their owners with day-to-day tasks. Not only that, but they also help people with visual disabilities by providing them assistance and guiding them to overcome any obstacles in their path.
This breed is also extremely loyal and have a nose for keeping their owners secure at all times. In fact, Labradors are often adopted by Customs and Border Protection Agencies to detect any illegal goods or contraband.
What is a good weight for an adult Labrador dog?
Labradors are large, muscular, and handsome. No wonder they are popular among the ladies.
On average, you’ll find male adult Labradors weighing between 29 to 36 kgs, whereas female adult Labradors weigh somewhere between 25 to 32 kgs. However, every dog grows differently and may be absolutely healthy even if their weight doesn’t fall in this bracket.
Experts suggest pet parents know and keep a track of the ideal weight of your breed to keep obesity in check. Obesity, in turn, can precipitate several other health issues as well. You can read more on Labradors' weight here.
Now, there are plenty of factors that can affect the weight and health of your Labrador. These might include genes, activity levels, environment, and more. It’s best to have an idea about the ideal weight for your Lab according to its age.
To make it easier for you to do the same, we’ve created a weight chart that showcases the average weight of male and female Labs according to their age group.
To weigh your dog, you can take him to a veterinary clinic. But if you wish to measure it by yourself, you’ll need only one but an indispensable piece of equipment - a bathroom scale.
First, measure your own weight using the scale. Then, pick your dog in your arms and stand on the scale. Your dog’s weight will be your weight alone subtracted from your weight with the dog.
At what age is a Labrador fully grown?
Indeed, it is a bit heartbreaking to see your puppy growing into an adult. Unfortunately, it is inevitable.
You will find your Labrador to be fully grown between the ages of 12 to 18 months, irrespective of whether it’s a male breed or female.
Can Labradors be left home alone?
If you are a first-time parent, this is one question that must have given you many sleepless nights. This is especially true if everyone in your family is a working professional or has a great social life.
To answer this question, yes, Labradors can be left home alone but you will need to take a few precautions and a meticulated separation process. Labrador, as a breed, is not naturally capable of spending a lot of time all by themselves. They are social creatures and like to have someone play with them or just be in the same room.
Yet, there are a few things that you can do to make sure they are comfortable and calm if/when you leave.
- If you ought to leave a Labrador alone, see that he or she has had a good exercise earlier that day
- They should have easy access to the bathroom.
- Make sure they are not left alone for long periods. Less than 4 hours is acceptable for adult ones and an hour for young puppies.
- It is a good idea to leave behind your recently worn clothing out where your dog can smell it. It can provide some comfort to them if they keep getting their parents' smell even when alone.
Are Labradors high maintenance?
While there is everything cute and comforting about a Labrador, they are still amongst the most high-maintenance breed of dogs.
Labradors are extremely energetic and require at least an hour of exercise each day. They will keep running around the house and you will have to run after them to prevent any sort of disruption that might take place.
In addition, these breeds are also prone to developing several medical conditions such as allergies, hip dysplasia, and even cancer. Thus, you need to put in extra effort in taking care of them to avoid these health issues. From vaccinations to regular checkups at the vet, a pet parent needs to be ready.
Also, Labradors are covered in a double coat of extremely thick hair. As a result, they shed a lot of hair, probably more than any other short-haired breed out there, irrespective of the season.
Housing a Labrador can turn out to be an expensive affair. Considering everything from food to health and grooming, it can cost you around $1000 to $1500 per year.
Do Labradors bark a lot?
There aren’t many dogs that don’t bark. Just like the majority, Labrador loves to bark but all for good and different reasons.
When your dogs don’t get any exercise or are deprived of social interaction, no matter the breed, they will bark a lot to release their pent-up energy. Pet parents can take their Labs for regular walks and some spaces to run around.
But if you have been making sure of your Lab’s physical stimulation and yet, they are barking, there could be a few other reasons. It might be because they are developing separation anxiety, they’re scared, or maybe they are just guarding your house. You must keenly observe his habits to conclude a reason.
How often should a Labrador walk?
Labradors tend to gain weight quickly. Thus, its crucial to ensure that they get enough exercise. Walking will not only keep a check on their weight but will also aid in maintaining their bone and joint health. Additionally, a walk can be a good bonding time too!
On average, you will need to walk your adult Labrador for at least 80 minutes every day. Keep in mind that this is an average figure. You will have to tailor the same according to your dog’s energy, physical condition, and other requirements.
Is Labrador a lazy dog?
On one hand, Labradors are extremely energetic, always excited to play. On the other hand, once they hit the sack, you can count 12 to 14 hours, straight. Pet parents have reported their Labs running and chasing even in their dreams. But that’s another story though.
If your dog has become lazy all of a sudden, it could be hinting to other concerning reasons like depression, lack of exercise, improper diet, or age. As they grow older, they tend to become lazier and calmer, just like us humans.
If your dogs are facing sudden laziness, you should consider taking them to the vet and getting them checked before things get you by surprise.
Conclusion: Are Labs good house dogs?
Labradors are one of the most ideal family dogs. They are caring, loyal, and love being around people. It is also easy to train Labradors because they are pretty intelligent. In fact, they are people pleasers. It directly means that they understand how and when they should behave in a desired way so that their owners are cheered enough to find the packet of treats.
Yes, there are a few catches. Labradors might need more care as well as attention than other breeds generally, but no one is perfect. They are also perfect for households where there are multiple pets.
Their calm, friendly, and gentle nature make them great companions, provided you are able to give them what they need.