When most people think about types of labradors, they think of colors–black, yellow, and even white. However, those aren’t actually the dogs’ breeds, just their fur color.
You might be surprised to learn that there are only two main types of labradors. They are the American labradors and English labradors. However, kennel clubs only recognize one breed, the Labrador retriever.
Below, read about the different types of labradors. In addition, learn about the personality and color options of labradors.
Adult vs. puppy labradors
Labradors are some of the most popular family dogs, and it’s easy to see why. But if you’re looking at Lab Puppies for Sale, you have to consider their characteristics at every age and stage of development.
First, labrador puppies grow very quickly. Your puppy may reach its full height between six months and a year but continue to fill out until age two.
Most labrador puppies reach sexual maturity at six to nine months of age, at which point you can compare them to human teenagers.
Labrador puppies are slowest to mature mentally. Your puppy may seem overly rambunctious, too energetic, or even destructive as a young dog.
Even though it can take two years, your lab should settle into a loving, calmer dog. But get its favorite toy out, and you’ll see a glimpse of that little puppy again!
English labradors vs. American labradors
The two main types of labradors are very similar, though they have some key differences. Despite their names, these differences aren’t inherent to their ancestral homelands. Instead, Britains and Americans bred labradors for distinct purposes.
In the UK, labrador breeders sought perfection and uniformity; in other words, show-quality dogs. In the US, labradors suited to hunting were more popular, so breeders tailored their puppies for those purposes.
Even though kennel clubs don’t recognize a difference, it’s apparent when you look at the two side-by-side. English Labradors tend to be stockier. They have broader, barrel-shaped midsections, and their bones look thicker.
In contrast, American labs are more narrow. They have narrower necks and heads and thinner coats. They also have longer legs, tails, and bodies.
As hunting dogs, they often retrieved birds and other small prey. That meant they had to be agile, fast, and able to swim. You can tell that the American labs are the athletes in the family.
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What do English and American labs have in common?
If these two types of labs look so different, why don’t kennel clubs distinguish between them? While they appear distinct, the two kinds of labs have much more in common.
Genetically, the two sub-breeds are strikingly similar, as you may expect. Even though their bone structure and overall build look different, they’re two ends of the same spectrum.
Another thing that they have in common is temperament. Almost all labs are good-natured dogs. They want to give and receive love and affection and have a strong pack mentality, meaning they’ll attach to your whole family.
Although American labs sometimes have more energy and need more exercise than their English cousins, both types are very eager to please. Along with the fact that they tend to love treats, that makes them easy to train.
Types of labrador colors
Many people associate labradors with their colors rather than heritage because the color is more apparent.
Kennel clubs tend to recognize three colors of labs, yellow, chocolate (brown), and black. That’s why you often hear a dog’s breed given as a yellow, chocolate, or black labrador retriever.
Now that you know the difference between the types of labs, you can choose the one that’s best for your family. American labs are more energetic, and English labs are larger, but both will love you.