Additional Information

As stated above, it's important that the parents of your pup exhibit the traits and qualities you desire. You are not likely to get a very mellow or show potential puppy from a field bred litter and likewise, not likely to get your next Field trial champion from 2 super mellow parents. So pay attention to the parents and always ask the breeder to review the pedigree of the parents and what accomplishments they have earned.

FINDING A BREEDER- IMPORTANT THINGS TO CONSIDER

 

Here I will have some helpful information about what to look for in a good breeder.

This page is still a work in progress, but if you have additional suggestions feel free to share.

First things first....

 

When looking for a Labrador breeder for your next (or first) Lab, it's important to first ask yourself what kind of Lab do I want? and for what purpose?

These 2 things are very important to know before you set off on your journey to find your next family companion. Why is it important you ask? Well one to thing to consider is this: if you were looking for a mellow family dog, would you purchase a puppy from a highly driven stud and bitch? The answer is no, you would seek out a pup from prents who exhibit traits you are seeking in a puppy. Likewise, would you seek out a very mellow puppy if you are wanting to run field trials?

Purpose bred- breeders who have a program and breed Labs for a specific purpose. The most common is Field and Show (Conformation). I'm please to state that there are some breeders who focus on form and function for the person/family who wants an all purpose Lab. They bring together the division that we face in this breed.

Health and keeping with the standard

 

Key parts of selecting a breeder should also be 1) do they do all appropriate health testing for the breed and 2) are they breeding to standard?

We cover both in this section and why these 2 key parts are important for every breeder to participate in.

The breed standard and why it's important to follow:

 

The standard serves as a blueprint for each breeder to follow. It is open for interpitation, however the Labs the breeder breeds should fit the standard as closely as possible and exhibit proper breed type. Breed type is what sets Labradors apart from every other breed. The blueprint lays out what a Labrador should be; what they should look like, what colors are acceptible, their size, and how they should behave (temperament, purpose, etc.). It is wise to question any breeder who purposely breeds away from the standard (unacceptible colors such as dilutes, incorrect size such as "mini" or "giant", etc)

Health testing:

 

At minimum a breeder should have all breeding stock with the following tests: OFA Hips (Fair or better), OFA Elbows (Normal), Eyes CAER cleared and DNA tested for PRCD-PRA, EIC and CNM (one parent should ALWAYS be "Clear"). A few others are OFA Cardiac ECHO clearance and DNA testing for HNPK, RD/OSD and Copper Toxicosis.

 

Puppy Culture and ENS-

 

First I will say that this isn't a requirement. Some breeders do and don't do ENS and some do/don't do Puppy Culture, but I would suggest it very highly! Puppy Culture is amazing and it's not only for breeders! As a puppy owner, you can help shape and start your new puppy on the road to becoming the most well mannered, confident and well adjusted adult. It helps if the breeder starts this, but it in no way stops you! I would suggest taking a look into Puppy Culture. There is also a Puppy Culture groupn on Facebook that is super supportive of those new to the program or interested in it.

 

ENS, unlike Puppy Culture, is typically something that needs to be done very early on. I always suggest people read up on the benefits of ENS.

 

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