Re: Question about buying another lab
You are going to get a ton of answers on this...so I am going to warn you up front that you may feel attacked...and it's not meant to be personal...but since we are passionate here about labrador retrievers and maintaining the integrity of the breed I am going to hope that you listen to what we have to say with an open mind.
Labs are terribly overbred in the United States. All too often folks think they are a gateway to money making. If you are breeding because people have stated that they would like a puppy out of your dog or you think your dog is the best or that you want your kids to witness the miracle of life. Stop, get your dog neutered and enjoy him as a pet.
If you have been showing your dog or competing with him in trials and he has attained some titles which implies that he is more than a couch potato, then I think you would have more merit in looking into breeding than to just say "he's from championship lines or hunting lines" which usually say that the CH or FC are about 4 generations back which have no direct bearing on the ability of your dog.
To Breed or Not to Breed
This question plagues people every single day. Let me tell you, there are many reasons why people decide to breed their dogs and there are millions of reasons why people should not breed.
Reasons that people give as reasons to breed:
My dog is awesome. I want to have his legacy live on.
My children would benefit from seeing the miracle of birth.
I want to make money off of my dog.
They are AKC registered and come from championship lines.
I didn't plan on breeding but she accidently got pregnant.
My dog is beautiful, others have told me they want a dog just like it.
None of these reasons make the persons or dogs involved reputable or necessarily "breeding stock". These reasons for breeding usually result in what are known as Back Yard Breeders and produce dogs for the sake of producing dogs and not for the betterment of the Labrador breed.
Did you know that there are OVER 125,000 Labrador Retrievers registered with the American Kennel Club annually? This is but one registering entity in the world! Add to this number the other registering bodies, mix in the "oops" litters that never get registered, the registerable dogs that don't get registered, all of the strays and all of the labs stuck in shelters or rescues right now and the true Labrador Retriever has become lost in translation.
If you need a reason not to breed your Lab, I would highly suggest looking at the Petfinder™ website to see how many available labs there are out there in the United States alone. Unfortunately, many of these homeless labs never make it out of these shelters alive.
If you still are interested in breeding:
Are you a reputable breeder or just a backyard breeder? Find out the difference between the two here (http://st15.startlogic.com/%7Ejustonel/breeder.html)
Now ponder this. Youd should breed ONLY under the following conditions:
You are active in dog clubs, competitions and of further IMPROVING the Labrador breed.
Your dog is mature enough (2 years or older).
Your dog is themselves titled proving that they are a capable working dog as the breed standard outlines and not just from "champion bloodlines".
Your dog is free from genetic and physical defects and has all OFA clearances and eye certifcations of favorable scores completed and on record.
Your dog is of sound temperment.
A registered dog is not an indicator of QUALITY!
Most dogs, even purebreds, should not be bred. Many dogs, though wonderful pets, have defects of structure, personality or health that should not be perpetuated. Breeding animals should be proven free of these defects before starting on a reproductive career. If you do not know what these defects are that we are talking about, you should not be breeding. Breeding should only be done with the goal of improvement - an honest attempt to create puppies better than their parents. Ignorance is no excuse - once you have created a life, you can't take it back, even if blind, crippled or a canine psychopath!
Furthermore, if you are keeping your baby outside and don't know the difference between breed and bred, then you should reconsider breeding. It's not for the novice. If this is your first lab and you haven't gotten this one trained and are already considering a second one and breeding, you need to stop and pass on this dog.
Dani, Rider & Rookie
SHR Watson's Safari Rider, JH, WC, CL1-R, RA, CGC, TDI
SHR Endeavor Put Me In Coach, RN, WC, CGC
Member Since 6/2003