Frequently Asked Questions




Were do your dogs live?

Our dogs are a part of our family and live inside the home with us. We do NOT have a kennel facility. Our dogs share our home, couches, bed, etc. We live a "dog lifestyle"  and our lives revolve around our dogs. Vacations are typically dog shows, holiday time is spent with our dogs, and they live as kings and queens.

Where are your puppies raised?

Our puppies are raised in the home. They enjoy the comforts of a heated or air conditioned home depending on the season and have someone home with them 24-7 from birth to the time they go to new homes. They receive hours and hours of daily attention and are well socialized when they go to their new homes.

How are your puppies with other  dogs, cats, and children? 

As a breed, Labradors tend to be good with pets and children. However, that is a general statement and puppies from poorly bred dogs who are not properly raised, may have undesirable temperaments.  Our puppies have awesome temperaments and are great with other pets and children. Our pups have no aggression and are eager to be loved and provide tons of love in return. Of course, pups and young children or other pets should be introduced slowly and carefully. The reason:  Like children, pups do not realize their strength and their enthusiasm can injure or overwhelm a young child or another pet. Similarly, a big dog or a child may unintentionally injure a puppy. Common sense goes a long way. As well, training and establishing rules for a puppy are very important as is proper exercise. My puppies make great family members and quickly fit in with all family scenarios.

What should I consider when determining the quality of a puppy?

There are 4 basic things to consider as a starting point in determining quality when doing research for a puppy. ALL Labs bred should have:

1. Official health clearances completed. (Orthopedic Foundation For Animals (OFA) hips and elbows, Optheomologic College of Veterinary Opthalogists (ACVO) eyes cleared, Optigen tested for PRA And Exercise Induced collapse (EIC) tested as examples of what SHOULD be done.

2. Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) registration (papers) a pure bred dog MUST be registered in Canada. It is illegal to sell a pup as pure bred without such!

3. Proper Conformation - They should conform to the CKC breed standard and actually look like Labs! Titles in Conformation (Championships with a CH in front of their official name) is a good indicator.

4. Proper temperaments - a product of 2 things: a) genetics and b) how the pups are raised.

Please visit the BUYER BEWARE section of our website for more details.

How much do Labrador Retrievers shed?

They shed some fur throughout the year with the bulk of their shedding occurring in the spring and fall (blowing of coat). Labradors have what is called a double coat. This means that they have a soft, downy undercoat and a harder outside guard coat. A shedding rake like the "Furminator" is particularly helpful in removing the undercoat which is the bulk of fur that is shed. Other factors affecting shedding amounts include weather, individual differences,  and the quality of the food used.

Are there different types of Labrador Retrievers? I have heard of "Show/British type" and "Field /American type".

There are no official division of the Labrador Retriever breed. However, unofficially, the "Show British type" are quite different from the "field /American type". The "Show/British type" are  typically stockier and heavier-boned with a large blocky head, a dense coat and otter tail as stated in the breed standard. There is an emphasis on conformation and many have Conformation Show Championships. The "Field /American type" are typically taller, slighter built, narrower head, longer muzzle, and sleeker look. We breed the "Show/British type" . They have Conformation Show Championships and many have excelled in those events. That is not to suggest they cannot retrieve or be trained for hunting. They generally love to retrieve and love the water.

How long do Labrador Retrievers live, and what health problems do they have?

Twelve years is an average age. Like people, there is no specific life expectancy as some may live up to 15 years old or older and some may pass over the rainbow bridge before they are 12. Getting a puppy from dogs with health clearances goes a long way towards extending length of life since such pups are much less likely to develop dehabilitating diseases like hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, blindness, etc. when compared to dogs bred without such clearances. As important, is feeding quality nutrition and proper exercise. (We discuss this at length in my puppy package that we give new owners)

Do you breed "Labradoodles"?

No, we do not breed mixed breeds like "Labradoodles". We only breed purebreds and specifically, purebred Labrador Retrievers. Labradoodles cannot be registered with the CKC ("papers") because they are not a breed of dog. They are simply a mixed breed. Many have the misunderstanding that they are a special breed, are more valuable, etc. That is simply not true. As a general rule, reputable Lab breeders will not have Labradoodles or breed any other mixed breed.

Do male dogs or female dogs make better pets?

Both sexes make great pets. It is often stated that male Labradors are more dependent and females are somewhat independent.  With our Labradors, there is NO DIFFERENCE between males and females since both sexes want to be where we are, crave attention, and are never far away. We find it is more an individual difference and not sex related. The only real difference is simply size with males being ~ 15 pounds heavier at maturity and, obviously, are bigger with more masculine qualities.

If I just want a Labrador for a pet, not for showing or breeding, does it matter whether he/she has CKC registrations (" papers")?

It depends on if you want a Labrador Retriever or a mixed breed. A purebred Labrador Retriever MUST be registered ("papers" ) by LAW! It is illegal to sell a pup as a purebred Labrador without CKC registrations ("papers"). If there are no registration papers, it is NOT a Labrador Retriever. That is step 1 in finding a quality Labrador; there must be an individual registration.  Of course, that is only step 1. Quality is dependent upon health clearances, conformation, and temperament as discussed in an earlier reply to a question.

Article 64. (h) of the APA states: "No person shall offer to sell, contract to sell or sell, as a purebred of a breed, any animal that is not registered or eligible to be registered as a purebred by the association authorized to register animals of that breed." The penalty for violation of the APA is a fine of up to $50,000.00. If your puppy is not registered, it cannot compete in any purebred competitions (obedience, draft work, showing, etc,). Any offspring from a non-registered dog are not considered purebred. If the parents are purebred Labrador Retrievers, there is no excuse for selling unregistered Labrador Retrievers. If puppies are being sold unregistered, ask to see the parents registration certificates and make sure the owner has the breeding rights for the parents. A Reliable and Reputable Breeder will NOT sell unregistered puppies. Choose your breeder carefully as you won't want to support a "puppy mill."

How much grooming do they need?

Labs should be brushed on a regular basis (about once a week) to help keep the shedding under control. A shedding rake or  "Furminator", which you can buy at most pet stores, works nicely. More intense shedding often occurs as seasons change and, when shedding is intense, you should brush your Labrador Retriever every day to get rid of the dead fur so there is less on the floors in your home. Labs, like all dogs, need to have their toenails clipped regularly. You can get a canine nail clipper at any pet store. Personally we use and recommend the "Dremmel" tool  for trimming nails. Labs do not need to be bathed frequently. A true bath, which includes shampooing the coat, is only necessary if the dog smells or typically, once or twice a year. Shampooing too often is not a good idea as shampoo tends to strip the natural oils out of their coats. A properly oily coat repels dirt and sheds water easily. Of course, that does not include swimming activities. It is very important to clean ears weekly to avoid ear infections. Dogs with "floppy ears" that cover the ear canal may get dirty ears as a result of moisture being trapped inside. We discuss this in detail with new owners and have it as a part of our "puppy package".

Are Labradors hyper?

A Labrador with correct temperament is not hyperactive. With the steady increase of popularity of the breed in recent years, more and more Labradors are being bred by people who have less regard for temperament than responsible breeders. "Backyard bred" Labradors have by far the worst temperaments. If you don't breed for good temperaments, you won't get them except by accident. "Backyard breeders" refers to people with little or no knowledge about breeding dogs and breed without regard for the qualities that make a good Labrador.  A better term is "irresponsible breeders." 

However, Labradors are active dogs especially in puppy hood and Labradors often do not fully mature until around 2 years of age! This means you will have a dog that is mentally a puppy  until this age regardless of its physical size! Often a Lab puppy is labeled hyperactive when it is simply a normal, exuberant and bouncy puppy. Owners need to implement training techniques and establish rules of the home if  they want a well behaved puppy. In addition, appropriate exercise is very important. Pups/dogs who receive no exercise, training, parameters, or rules can be a huge problem for their owners, becoming destructive, and unmanageable. Of course, discipline does NOT mean hitting or abusing a dog!!!

Do Labradors like to swim?

Generally Labradors love to swim. However, owners need to be aware that puppies can have more interest than ability. Be very careful!!! Pups have to learn about swimming and may not realize their lack of skill, they may be intimidated,  and may splash a lot when they do swim for the first few times. Monitor closely and never throw a young puppy into the water. Going in yourself and playing with a puppy ii a great idea. Be aware that pups have sharp nails that can cause injury if they try to climb up on you in the water. The pup's first introduction to the water should be at a spot where there is a gradual entry rather than a sharp drop off, and there should be no current at all. Let the pup explore the water at his/herown pace; if he/she just wants to splash and wade for now, that is fine. As he/she gains confidence, he/she will go in deeper. Dogs should not be allowed unattended access to swimming. 

Are there golden Labs? 

Labradors come in three colors: black, chocolate, and yellow. Yellow Labradors are often mistakenly called "golden Labradors." The term yellow refers to a range of color from nearly white to fox-red. There is a separate breed called the Golden Retriever.

What about  white or silver Labradors?

Black, chocolate, and yellow are the only correct colors. There are yellow Labradors that are so pale they appear white, but they are still considered to be yellow and will usually have some color, even if it is only on the ear tips. These lighter yellows are not unusual nor rare. The same goes for "fox red" Labradors which are also yellows.. 

"Silver" Labradors are either crosses with Weimaraners (mixed breed) or very light, dilute chocolates. They cannot be registered as silver!!!

Are there differences between Labs of different colors?

Besides color, there are no differences. Sometimes people believe such things as  black Labs are better hunters, yellow dogs are lazier, chocolate dogs are hardheaded and stubborn, etc. None of this is true. Coat color in  Labs is determined by two genes unrelated to anything else about the dog. Since it is possible to get all three colors in the same litter, the notion that there is a color based difference in temperament and/or ability is absurd.

Why do I see some Labradors with a pinkish nose.

It is called "winter nose" or "snow nose." Many yellow Labs will have dark noses in the summer that fade somewhat in the winter and repeat the cycle the next year. This is perfectly normal. On the other hand, a Dudley nose can occur in a yellow lab with chocolate pigmentation. To differentiate between Labs with faded noses and Dudleys, check the eye rims and gum tissue of the dogs. A Dudley will have only light pink or tan skin; the other dogs will have black pigment in these areas.

Do they jump fences? Are they good escape artists?

They are not renowned for this as a breed although individuals may do such. Our Labs want to be with us so have no desire to wander. A fenced yard should keep your Lab safe.  Because pups can chew a lot, take care that your enclosure is not being chewed. A puppy should not be left unattended! A Lab that is properly exercised and who has proper training should never leave your general area.

Do they bark a lot?

Excessive barking is not typical of the breed. However,  Labradors often give a warning bark in response to an unusual event that they feel needs your attention, such as "There is someone in the driveway!" Barking should be addressed with a "stop" command as a part of training so such behavior does not become an annoyance or a problem.

Will you deliver my new puppy? 

We try and arrange delivery to St. John's and area and to Gander. For folks living in other areas, we will discuss on an individual basis. Many new owners, when possible, try to pick up their puppy to see "mom" and the home their pup was raised in. Of course, that is not possible for everyone due to geographic constrictions. We also make arrangements on commercial flights for puppies outside the Island of  Newfoundland.

Would you provide me with additional information?

Absolutely! Just e-mail or call us at your convenience. Please be sure that you have read  the "Buyer Beware" section of my website. Also we stay in contact with our puppy buyers for the life of their puppy.