Labradors are very cute friendly dogs that are great for families that include kids. However, this breed of dog has a number of quirks and special issues that may make it an inappropriate pet for some people. Here are two questions to ask to help you determine if you're ready to adopt a lab puppy.
Do You Have a Lot of Energy and Free Time?
One reason why Labradors make great family dogs is because they are energetic and love to play, all the time. They require daily exercise, which they prefer to do outside regardless of the weather. Whether it's raining, snowing, or there's a tornado blowing, there's a good chance your Lab will want to take a walk outdoors. Without adequate mental and physical stimulation, a Labrador will become destructive, which can lead to extensive damage to the home's interior and exterior.
This means you need to be someone with a lot of energy and who also enjoys being outdoors. If you can barely get through the day or you work a lot, there needs to be someone else in your home that can pick up the slack (e.g. kids) and play with the dog on a regular basis.
Alternatively, you can take your dog to a pet daycare where he or she will get plenty of exercise playing with other animals in the facility. However, this service costs $12 to $38 per day, so be sure to budget for that expense if you decide to go this route.
Do You Have a Large Home?
Because of a Labrador's boundless energy, it needs a lot of space to run around and get into mischief. Thus, these dogs are more suitable for large homes or, at least, places that have big backyards where they can run around. The more Labs you have, the bigger the space you need.
Therefore, these dogs aren't appropriate for apartment dwellers, particularly if your place is small. Your Lab may be okay if you live in a good-size condo. Be aware, though, that these dogs can get a large as 80 pounds and may make a lot of noise when running around as a result. Any neighbors who live below you may not be as appreciative of your dog's energy if he or she constantly gallops around all day.
To learn more about Labrador dogs or to discuss whether this is a good breed for your needs, contact a Lab breeder, such as Bar R Kennels.