If you are considering adding a puppy to your family, you might have thought about getting a Labrador. Labrador Retrievers are one of the most popular dog breeds and they’re very famous for being trainable, friendly, outgoing, and generally great pets. Most labs make ideal family pets and are often seen in obedience competitions or hunting challenges due to their easy-going and pleasing natures. Labs are very enthusiastic and intelligent dogs, so it’s no surprise that they are a popular choice. However, before you get a Labrador puppy, it’s important to consider some important factors and make sure that they are the right fit for you and your family.
Many people underestimate how much owning a dog can actually cost. Not only do you need to factor in the cost of their dog food, but you’ll also need to think about expenses such as insurance, vet check-ups, training classes, accessories, and everything in between. If you and your family like to go on holiday once or twice per year and you cannot take your dog with you, you will need to think about the cost of finding a pet sitter or leaving them in a boarding facility.
Do you have the time to dedicate to a Lab? These dogs tend to be very sociable and outgoing; they have lots of energy and they need plenty of attention throughout the day. If you work long hours, getting a Lab might not be the ideal option for you unless there is somebody to stay at home with them for most of the day, or if you can afford to send them to a doggy day-care facility or have a dog walker come and spend some time with them. Labs are very energetic and need frequent walking; you can expect to take your dog on at least a couple of daily walks and you’ll need to set aside plenty of time for training your puppy.
While you don’t need to be a complete guru to be a great dog owner, it is important to make sure that you have at least got the basics right when it comes to looking after dogs, and Labradors in particular. Before you make your final decision, do plenty of research into the breed and its characteristics to make sure that it is the right fit for you. Consider factors such as feeding and make sure that you have all the information you need to make an informed decision on your dog’s diet. You can find a lot of guidance from Bella and Duke if you want to put your dog on a raw food diet to make sure that they are getting the right nutrients for them. Bella and Duke also offer pre-packaged raw dog meals that are designed to suit your dog after providing them with information about your dog’s breed, age and dietary needs.
If you’re not already the type of family that goes for a long walk every day, getting a Labrador as a pet is likely going to mean that you can expect some lifestyle changes. Consider your current lifestyle and make sure that you can easily fit this breed of dog into it. If you spend a lot of time working away from home or tend to be more of an indoor rather than an outdoor type of person, this breed of dog might not be the best fit for you since they will need ample time to play and run outside.
Do you have the physical space in your home for a Lab to live comfortably with your family? These dogs are small, cute and cuddly as puppies, but bear in mind that they do tend to grow quite quickly and can get very clumsy in the teenage years, which is cute, but might not be great for somebody who lives in a small house or flat. Labs can be very excitable when they are showing affection and will often bound around when playing, so make sure that you’ve got the room for them to do that without knocking everything over.
Finally, make sure that you are ready to take on the huge commitment that comes with getting a Labrador puppy. Labs live for an average of around 12-14 years and yours is going to be dependent on you for love, food, walks, warmth and companionship for the rest of his or her life. In addition to the commitment of getting a dog in general, it’s also important to be ready for the commitment that comes with training this dog breed since they generally take about three years from puppyhood to fully mature.
Labrador Retrievers are known for being guide dogs and service dogs. Not only are they exceptionally intelligent, but they can also make a fantastic family pet. But before you welcome one into your home, make sure that this dog breed is the right fit for you.