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10 Facts About Labrador You Probably Never Knew


You likely have owned or possibly know someone who has owned a Labrador retriever, therefore, you ought to learn more about them!


1. They are the favorite breed in America

The American Kennel Club says the Labrador retriever has held the number one ranking as the favorite breed for twenty-four years in a row, it’s the longest any breed has done so in the history of the AKC.


2. Labs were initially used to help fishermen.

Labrador retrievers are a breed that loves water and were bred to be that way. Their coats are resistant to water due to being a double layer, so they insulate the dogs quite well. It’s also short and that way it won’t pull them under when they get wet. They additionally have webbed toes so they can swim quite fast. The fishermen in the past have used them to help bring in their nets, pull their ropes in-between boats, as well as catch fish that escaped.


3. They have a misleading name.

Labrador retrievers don’t come from Labrador, they really came from Newfoundland. The Greater Newfoundland breed of dog was crossed with a small water dog in the 18th century to create what was called St. John’s water dog. They do look similar to the Labradors of today, but they had white paws and muzzles. The St. John’s water dog is now extinct, but it was the Lab’s ancestor.


4. They may have been named by the Earl of Malmesbury.

In 1887, the Earl of Malmesbury took a few of these pups with him back to England after he got them in Canada. He is said to have called them his “Labrador dogs.” Because Labrador and Newfoundland are near each other, a lot of historians think they got their name because the British normally lumped territories together, and called the entire area Labrador. And some people think they got the name because these dogs sometimes swam in the Labrador Sea.


5. Tax laws in Canada assisted Labs in becoming a distinctive breed.

A Canadian mix of brand-new taxes on canines along with quarantines on bringing animals into England brought St. John’s water dog sales to a complete stop. Ultimately, these original Labradors ended up going extinct in Canada, however, it keeps going in Great Britain because there were kennels of them in Scotland. Labs were ultimately acknowledged by the English Kennel Club starting in 1903.

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6. They are quick!

Labrador retrievers are well-known for being able to run very fast. They are able to actually get to 12mph in only 3 seconds.


7. Three colors can appear in the same litter.

No matter what color the mom and dad are, one litter can have chocolate black or yellow pups. Two genes are responsible for the coat’s pigmentation, therefore the difference may be very common and show up as pups with all different fur colors.


8. A black Lab without a name strolled its way into one of Led Zeppelin’s songs.

If you’ve noticed the words to the Led Zeppelin song “Black Dog,” you will see it really isn’t about pups. It was named for a black Lab who strolled into their Headley Grange studio when the group was recording their album entitled, Led Zeppelin IV.


9. A Labrador who ended up in jail …

After it killed Pennsylvania Governor Gifford Pinchot’s wife’s cat, a black Lab named Pep got put in jail with a sentence of life without parole. He was put into the Eastern State Penitentiary on August 12, 1924, then died ten years later. He and the warden were friends. You may think this is just a fake tale, but records of the prison show it’s true. (Pinchot actually claimed it was in the prison as a mascot for the prisoners.)


10. Labradors are the most frequently-used breed to make into guide dogs.

Guide Dogs of America report they use 70 percent Labs and 15 percent German Shepard dogs, with the rest other breeds. Labs love to please so they make the best choice, plus they adapt easily, can be trained with ease, and are of the right size.


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