I'm new here in many respects. I've never owned a lab before. My dad previously owned a lab/greyhound mix before I was born, and my neighbour currently owns a lab/rottie mix that I adore to pieces. I was just wondering if anyone has any advice for me. My previous dog (she passed last december) was a 20 lb cockapoo/terrier mix and was high/stubborn energy so I don't think a labs high energy will bother me much. Any training advice? The lab next door is the sweetest guy ever, and follows my neighbour everywhere he goes and I want that and am willing to put in the time/effort to get it. My little dog was a PIA (I loved her still, she was my heart dog and as stubborn as me) but definitely had little dog syndrome.
I'm also either hoping to adopt, or get a puppy from a breeder (registered/reputable of course). I also hope to do either fly ball or agility with the new pack member. THX
hi and welcome.
rescue vs breeder is in great part a personal decision. IF you do teh breeder route, make sure to read on what a reputable breeder is/does and keep in mind it will be considerably more expensive (depending where you live, that is $800-1500). Then you have to add three rounds of shots and a spay/neuter. A good breeder proves their dogs in a venue (field, hunt, conformation) and ensures they only breed dogs clear of the MANY health issues that plague the breed.
But there are tons of really wonderful labs in rescue. Rescues usually come with all their shots and spay/neuter. and theyof ALL ages even young ones. I have never had any issues with adopters of my fsoters bonding with their dog no matter the age adn I have been training my current foster (he was 1-1.5 when I got him) for agility.
You also need to consider if you are ready for a puppy and all that entails (ex: exercise for a puppy is different, they cannot hold it in very long so you need to let them out, socialisation, and they require more time/work). For me, i was not ready for a puppy so a 1.5 year old dog was pefect for me.
If you rescue you can even get a dog you know will more likely like agility or flyball.
Now - I won't pretend to know about cokers spanials nor poddles nor mixes of the two - but a young lab can generally need an hour or more OFF LEASH playing each day.
Lastly - each dog is an individual - the dog that followed their owners everywhere is in part their personality/temperment. Labs tend to be close by your side but they can also be adventurous and happy to run off and say hello to everyone - unless you give them the command to stay or come if you trained that). So I would caution having a picture of a dog and wanting exactly that - you will likely be dispointed.
It can be difficult to offer training advice on everything just like this in a post, it is a huge topic with lots of facets. Especially if you don't even have the dog yet. But what I can do is recommend some great books that will help give you the tools (and tips) for training:
Patricia McConnell - The Puppy Primer Patricia McConnell | Dog Training Books (available at various stores)
Patricia McConnell - the other end of the leash Patricia McConnell | Dog Training Books (available at various stores)
Ian Dunbar has two that are FREE: Free downloads | Dog Star Daily
Jean Donaldson - The Culture Clash The Culture Clash: Amazon.ca: Jean Donaldson: Books
Ian Dunbar has a great website with lots of tips and tricks and resources for common problem:
Last edited by Tanya; 02-28-2013 at 05:54 PM.
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
Good luck what ever you decide. The first year in the life of a lab, whether a puppy or a rescue will have its own set of challenges. Take your time and figure out which fits your life style best.
Maxx & Emma Jean
Ozzy - 10/16/02 - 06/28/11 - Always in my heart.
Sometimes the hardest part isn't letting go - but learning to start over.