WARNING!! Labs have a way of stealing your heart before you know it! Adopting a Lab is a lifelong commitment and responsibility. Please read on and consider carefully before completing your application.
Please keep in mind that Rescued Labs are usually in rescue for a reason. They all have lots of potential, but almost all require basic obedience training by their adopters. Some may have behavior issues that caused their original owners to relinquish them or abandon them at shelters.
Many of the dogs we place have up to six months of adjustment time which can present challenges to their new owners. Patience and commitment are essential for rescued Lab adopters. Several highly qualified dog behaviorist/trainers work with us and our adopters to provide support and insight during the initial transition period for you and your new Lab.
Is A Labrador Retriever Right for You?
As you probably know, the Labrador Retriever is the most popular breed of dog in the United States. But popularity and suitability are two different things. Shelters, currently full of Labs, are a testament that a Lab is not right for every home.
Before you consider adopting a Lab, please bear in mind the following:
Our Labs range in weight from 40 lbs to over 100 lbs! Their tails can make a clean sweep of a coffee table. Quite simply, they need room, even inside a home. Uncluttered houses and yards are a must!
Labs were developed as a sporting breed to routinely endure a day in the field with no ill effects. They need to have consistent exercise (30 minutes of vigorous exercise twice daily is usually sufficient) or they will have difficulty adjusting to the “calm house pet” role that is expected by most owners.
If you require a fastidiously kept house, don’t get a Labrador Retriever! Labs shed all year long and require daily care. Even with daily brushing, you will have dog hair around, especially on rugs, clothes, furniture, and oh yes–occasionally in your food!
Health & Care
Labs are a sturdy breed. But like any dog, they have their share of health concerns. Ear infections are common and can sometimes be chronic, requiring cleaning, and medication. Some Labs have skin allergies that require medications and special food.
This breed is prone to orthopedic problems such as hip dysplasia, and injuries such as torn ligaments in their hind legs. These conditions can be very costly to correct. Keeping a Lab at a normal weight can significantly help avoid or manage these problems. Your vet is your best resource for advice on weight.
Most of our Labs require basic training. Not only does it promote good behavior, but also helps them bond with their families. Labrador Retrievers are smart and eager to please and do very well in training classes. Once given basic training and a job to do, no matter what it is, a Lab previously labeled as a problem, will improve tremendously.
A very handy training tool and one we strongly endorse is crate-training. Labs are curious and “nosy”. Having a comfortable crate to hang out in when not supervised and especially as a Lab is settling into your home, makes it easier for the whole household. If you are not willing to consider crate training a rescued Lab, you may want to consider another breed.
Labradors are not good watch dogs. If you want your dog to protect your home and property, this breed is not a good choice.
The Labrador Retriever Club of America’s website provides additional excellent information on “Living with Rescued Labrador Retrievers”. We strongly encourage you to visit this site before completing your application.