Hi! My name is Ashley! My husband and I have been planning to get a lab for a couple of years, but we were moving to Nevada and wanted to get settled first. Now that we are settled, the breeder search is overwhelming. We have been looking for breeders in Southern California, Utah, and Arizona but there are so many to choose from. My husband has had a lab most of his childhood. He wants an English type, white to yellow lab. Any tips? Thank you so much in advance!
Hello and welcome,
My number one recommendation would be to start learning about the breed and what makes a "good" breeder. Labs are so very popular that they are the most bred breed of dog. Everyone and anyone is breeding their pure bred lab - just because it's a great pup (like ALL labs should be) and it's pure bred.
Unfortunately this has lead to the breed having some pretty serious health issues that are painful and expensive and can shorten their life. There is no way to know by looking at a pup (or even going to the vet for a wellness check) if the dog is affected (unless they are at that time) or if they can pass it on to their pups. Luckily, there are tests you one can do on both parents to ensure the odds are good they will not pass anything like that on to their puppies (some tests you can guarantee they won't). There are tests for hips and elbows (x-rays are taken and submitted for testing with the Orthepedic Foundation of American - OFA), heart, eyes, EIC (exercise induced collapse) and CMN (ok not sure what the long version of the tone is!). You want both parents to be tested for all of them. IF the breeder won't show you proof or says "my dogs are healthY" - walk away.
Also, "pure bred" doesn't mean well bred. MOre and more we are seeing labs with "incorrect" (bad) temperaments. So just because the lab is "pure bred" don't be fooled into thinking this means they automatically have that gold star temperament people love in the breed.
If your husband likes "english" type then you want a lab bred for conformation. Look for breeders that COMPETE actively with their dogs (but also do all that testing AND breed for temperament). The best way to do that is find a breed club for your area or see if there are shows and go visit See the dogs in person, see which "lines" (which breeder) you like.
Stay away from ANY breeder that advertises WHITE. That is not a real Labrador color. Light yellow is but if they call it "white" they are only out to make a buck.
There are plenty of great breeders in CA and AZ. Just be careful in your research!
If you can, find a Labrador retriever club in the states you listed. Some serious breeders. Make sure you check on all clearances from parents. Even grandparents.
Wishing you all the luck. Doing research before buying a Lab today, priceless....
Get yoir post count up and private message me or email me at [email protected]. My LRC Rescue Task Force chair/cohort is in AZ and is a reputable breeder who I am sure could help you or steer you in the right direction.
I agree on the breed education too, btw. Anyone advertising "white", golden, or God forbid, the dilutes is not reputable. Anne
WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014
Definitely get your post count up. Having someone know a good breeder, who actually breeds themselves, will point you in the right direction. Had a lovely girl from California point me to an awesome breeder very close to me. Awesome find, awesome breeder who basically sent me photos and facts and I watched the litter grow up from my computer. Still have an ongoing conversation with her regarding the pup. Love that anything I have a question for, just have to ask. Also, she works closely with Lab rescues too in our area.
Thanks for all of the advice. I will keep that in mind and keep looking for more advice on the posts. I really appreciate it.