The Ultimate Labrador Retriever Puppy Ownership Guide

12 minute read By Lucy Hughes
Reviewed by: Pawrade Team
May 20, 2023

5 yellow labrador retriever puppies sitting against a pink background

A Labrador Retriever puppy for sale is a popular and beloved breed known for its friendly disposition, intelligence, and versatility. Whether as a working dog, a family pet, or a canine companion in various roles, the Labrador Retriever continues to be adored by dog lovers around the globe.

Find out what it’s like to be a Lab pawrent with our ultimate Labrador Retriever puppy ownership guide when you’re looking for Labrador Retriever puppies for sale. 

History and Origin of a Labrador Retriever Puppy 

The breed's history can be traced back to Newfoundland, a Canadian province with a rich maritime heritage. While the exact origins of a Labrador Retriever puppy for sale are not entirely clear, their ancestors were likely a mix of St. John's water dogs, Newfoundlands, and various other local breeds.

In the early 19th century, Labrador Retrievers were primarily used by fishermen and hunters in Newfoundland. Thanks to their excellent swimming abilities and webbed paws, they were skilled at retrieving fish and nets from the icy waters. English sportsmen visiting the region noticed these talented dogs and brought them back to England in the early 1800s.

The breed's popularity grew rapidly in England, and they were recognized by The Kennel Club (UK) in 1903. Labrador Retrievers were primarily used as working dogs for retrieving game during hunting expeditions. Their intelligence, trainability, and strong work ethic made them highly sought after as gun dogs.

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Labrador Retrievers made their way to North America in the early 20th century, quickly gaining popularity as family pets and versatile working dogs. In the United States, they were officially recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1917. Over the years, Labrador Retrievers became renowned for their friendly and gentle nature, making them excellent companions and therapy dogs.

The Labrador Retriever's history and origin are deeply rooted in their working abilities, which have evolved into a breed known for its loyalty, intelligence, and loving nature.

How Popular of a Dog Breed Is a Labrador Retriever Puppy? 

Today, Labrador Retrievers are one of the most popular breeds worldwide. In fact, a Labrador Retriever puppy for sale was America's most popular dog breed for 30 years straight on the AKC’s list of Most Popular Dog Breeds, only losing its title to the French Bulldog in 2022. 


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Popular shirts with Labrador Retrievers include Simply Southern's Pet Line 

Affectionately called “America’s Best Friend,” they are as iconic to our nation as apple pie and baseball. Their adaptability and willingness to please their owners have also contributed to their widespread popularity. You’ll find them at every dog park, on commercials, as mascots for products, and all over social media. 

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There are entire magazines dedicated to this lovable breed as well. Books and movies like “Old Yeller” and “Marley and Me” tug at the heartstrings of Lab lovers. The character Zuma from the cartoon “Paw Patrol” is a staple in homes with young children across the country, so just about every age can recognize and loves this amazing breed.

What’s the Personality Like of Labrador Retriever Puppies? 

A Labrador Retriever puppy for sale’s temperament combines intelligence, friendliness, and a reliable disposition, making them a versatile and beloved breed for both families and working professionals alike.

As one of the best family dog breeds for children, they’ll be your kids’ 4-legged sibling as one of the pack. They are great family dogs because they are happy doing what their human companions are doing. Labrador Retrievers are often described as patient and tolerant, making them an excellent choice for households with children. They possess a playful and energetic nature, always ready for a game of fetch or a swim.

Labrador Retriever puppies for sale are consistently among the best dog breeds for first-time owners due to their good-natured temperament and gentle spirits. They are sweet, smart, and have friendly, outgoing personalities. 

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A Service to All 

Labrador Retriever dogs are renowned for their exceptional working abilities which make them highly regarded as working dogs in various fields, including search and rescue, therapy work, guide dogs for the blind, and as service animals for individuals with disabilities.

Firstly, the intelligence and trainability of Lab puppies for sale enable them to excel in tasks such as search and rescue operations, where they can locate missing persons or detect specific scents.

Their excellent sense of smell and swimming skills also make them superb retrievers, making them ideal for waterfowl hunting. Game hunters appreciate their ability to retrieve without damaging the game. 

Additionally, Labs' strong work ethic and physical stamina allow them to thrive as service dogs, assisting individuals with disabilities. Their gentle and friendly nature further enhances their effectiveness as therapy and emotional support dogs, providing comfort and support to those in need. 

Overall, Labrador Retrievers' versatility and innate working instincts make them exceptional in a wide range of working roles.

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What Does a Labrador Retriever Puppy Look Like? 

You can’t help but smile when you see a roly-poly Labrador Retriever puppy for sale. Their iconic appearance and kind, expressive eyes add to their charming personalities.

In general, a Labrador Retriever puppy for sale is a medium-to-large-sized dog that will stand 21-25 inches tall and weigh 55-80 pounds when fully grown. They have a strong, muscular build, velvety triangular ears that flop over, and a tapered “otter tail” that will enthusiastically wag and knock your hot, fresh cup of coffee off the coffee table if you’re not careful. 

A Labrador Retriever puppy for sale’s short, double coat sheds a moderate-to-high amount and protects them from extreme weather conditions. Labrador Retriever puppies for sale do not come in a combination of colors and patterns like other breeds; rather, they come in 4 solid colors of silver, yellow, black, or chocolate. Their eyes can be either blue or brown. 

Did you know that there are actually three types of Labrador Retriever puppies for sale: The American, the English, and a combination of the two? In addition, genetics plays a huge role in coat and nose color. Read on to find out the differences in how heritage and genes play out in the appearance of a Labrador Retriever puppy for sale. 

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English Labrador Retriever puppy 

English Labrador Retriever

The English Labrador Retriever, also known as the show or bench type, is a variant of the Labrador Retriever breed. It is known for its stockier build, broader head, and calmer temperament compared to the American Labrador Retriever. 

English Labrador Retriever puppies are often bred for conformation and are commonly seen in dog shows. They have a dense and thick coat that comes in various colors such as black, yellow, and chocolate. 

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American Labrador Retriever puppy 

American Labrador Retriever

The American Labrador Retriever, also referred to as the field or working type, is another variation of the Labrador Retriever breed. Known for their athleticism and high energy, American Labrador Retriever puppies are bred for their working abilities, particularly in the field of hunting and retrieving. They have a leaner build, longer legs, and a more active disposition compared to their English counterparts.

American Labrador Retriever puppies for sale are prized for their excellent scenting abilities, endurance, and agility. Their coats are typically shorter and water-resistant. These energetic and enthusiastic dogs excel in various dog sports and outdoor activities.

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A silver American/English Labrador Retriever

Mixed Labrador Retrievers

A combination of an American and English Labrador Retriever is scientifically named Canis Lupis Goofballus. While we may kid about the name, we’re not kidding that they are excellent Good Boys and Girls. It's important to note that coat color or heritage alone does not determine the breed's qualities or abilities. 

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The Dudley nose

The Dudley nose 

The “Dudley nose” is a unique characteristic occasionally seen in Labrador Retriever puppies for sale. It refers to a nose that lacks pigmentation, resulting in a pink or flesh-colored appearance. Unlike the typical black or brown nose of Labradors, the Dudley nose is caused by a recessive gene. 

While it doesn't affect a Labrador Retriever puppy for sale's health or abilities, it is considered a fault in show standards but not a fault in personality! Despite this, many Dudley-nosed Labrador Retriever puppies are cherished pets, and their distinct nose adds to their individuality and charm.

What about Silver Labrador Retriever puppies? 

The most common coat colors of a Labrador Retriever are black, chocolate, and yellow. You may notice some Labrador Retriever puppies for sale also come in silver. A silver Labrador Retriever puppy for sale stands out and is considered special due to its unique coat color. Thanks to genetics, the silver coat color is a diluted form of chocolate, resulting in a striking and eye-catching appearance. 

While not officially recognized by major kennel clubs like the American Kennel Club (AKC) or the Kennel Club (UK), silver Labradors have gained popularity among dog enthusiasts. 

What Health Problems Might a Labrador Retriever Puppy Face? 

A Labrador Retriever puppy for sale is a relatively healthy and robust dog breed but may be predisposed to certain health conditions. It’s always a good idea to discuss any concerns you may have about your Labrador Retriever puppy’s health with a trusted licensed veterinarian familiar with the breed. 

Obesity

Because they are so cute and highly food-motivated, you may want to feed your Lab baby all sorts of delicious treats. They may also win awards for Best Counter Surfing Technique when they steal a fresh pizza or piece of funfetti birthday cake off the counter! 

However, too many table scraps and treats coupled with a lack of activity can create an obese Labrador Retriever, causing all sorts of health issues such as skeletal issues, respiratory concerns, and hypothyroidism, not to mention joint issues. 

Joint issues

Extra weight can put pressure and strain on their joints, so it’s important to monitor how they are moving around to see if they are in any pain. Other joint issues include hip and elbow dysplasia and osteoarthritis. 

Ears

A Labrador Retriever’s floppy ears are perfect warm environments for bacteria, mites, and yeast infections. It’s important to check your puppy’s ears for a foul odor, dark wax, or signs of irritation and address the issues right away. 

Types of cancer

Unfortunately, Labrador Retrievers can be predisposed to certain cancers as well, including bone cancer (osteosarcoma) and cancer affecting white blood cells (lymphoma and lymphosarcoma).  

How to avoid health problems

A healthy diet, exercise, and supplements can help your Labrador Retriever avoid obesity and joint problems. While some risk factors can’t be prevented, you can do your best for your Labrador Retriever puppy by providing it with the best life possible to keep them healthy throughout its lifespan of 11-13 years. 

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Where Can I Find a Labrador Retriever Puppy? 

When searching for a “Labrador Retriever puppy for sale near me,” you may come across all sorts of prices and deals that seem too good to be true – and they usually are. Always trust your gut! 

Scammers will take advantage of the popularity of this delightful breed and know ways to trick well-meaning potential pawrents like yourself, and they have lots of smooth ways to trick you. 

Dishonest puppy scammers looking for a quick buck will usually advertise on social media sites and may even use stolen pictures. Because a Lab puppy for sale can look like other breeds, you may not even be sure you’re getting a Labrador Retriever, which could be a mix or an entirely different breed altogether. A scammer will ask you to pay in methods like gift cards, apps, and money orders, which aren’t secure and can’t be traced. Lastly, a scammer will not offer any papers explaining any health tests, guarantees, or puppy contracts

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Find Reputable Labrador Retriever Breeders at Pawrade

At Pawrade, we’ve done all the searching for a trustworthy Labrador Retriever breeder for you. Through our extensive vetting process, we provide Labrador Retriever puppies for sale from pre-screened and hand-selected breeders that know how to breed for the best health and temperament. 

All of our Labrador Retriever puppies for sale offered at Pawrade come with a 3-year health guarantee and a puppy contract outlining owner and breeder responsibilities. We take a puppy-first approach which puts the health and happiness of your Labrador Retriever puppy for sale at the forefront of all that we do. 

Pawrade will never ask for unsecured payments using money orders, sketchy apps, or cash. We partner with a secure transaction management platform, PetPay, which also keeps track of all your important documents in addition to payment.

If you’re ready to search for Labrador Retriever puppies for sale and experience the devoted love of this delightful breed, contact one of our Puppy Concierges to start the process.  


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Lucy Hughes

Lucy Hughes has been teaching and writing professionally for half her life. She has a passion for helping people choose a puppy and lead an exciting life with their new furry companion. She enjoys spending quality time with her family and her beloved Golden Retriever, Bowie.

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