Helpful Things to Know Before Choosing a Lab Puppy

Labrador retrievers, more colloquially known as labs, are incredibly popular in the United States. They're friendly, energetic, and healthy overall, which means they make great family dogs. With that in mind, however, there are a few things that are important for you to know before you choose a lab puppy to bring home.

Yellow, chocolate, and black are just colors.

Some people breed yellow labs. Others breed chocolate labs or black labs. When you ask someone what kind of dog they have, they are likely to reply "chocolate lab" or "black lab," rather than just "lab." This may lead you to believe that these are three different breeds or types of labs, but that's not the case. Yellow, black, and chocolate are just the colors that labs come in. All three share the same characteristics other than their colors. It's perfectly okay to pick a lab puppy based on its color, but be aware that it's only the color you're choosing. 

Labs grow quickly.

When you're looking at a litter of lab puppies, and they're small enough for you to scoop them up with one arm, it is easy to forget how big they will actually become. Female labs can weigh up to 70 pounds, and male labs can weigh up to 80 pounds. And on top of that, labs grow quickly. So, before you bring that lab puppy home, you want to make sure you have enough space and the right gear. You may need a tall baby gate to keep the pup inside a room, and you should be prepared to buy a larger crate in a few weeks or months once your lab pup is larger.

They are easy to train, but they do need training.

Breeders and lab enthusiasts are always quick to remark how easy these dogs are to train. And this is true; they're a very trainable breed. However, you do still have to put the time and effort into training them. If you don't have much experience training dogs, it will be important for you to enroll in puppy classes. Make sure your family members are on-board and willing to help train the dog, too. 

Now that you know a little more about labs and lab puppies, you're more prepared to bring one home. Talk to the breeder if you have any lingering questions about the breed or about the specific litter of puppies they are selling.