If you’re a dog lover, you certainly know what it means to fall in love with a soft, fluffy, playful, loyal, and loving ball of fur that makes you smile every time you walk in the door. At the same time, you also know what it feels like to make your dog smile!
If you’re a dog lover, you probably know what it’s like to fall in love with a soft, fluffy, playful, loyal, and affectionate ball of fur that makes you smile every time you walk in the door. At the same time, you also know what it’s like to make your dog smile!
Here in America, we are a nation of dog lovers. And with hundreds of dog breeds living in our homes from the Atlantic to the Pacific coasts, it may be a shock to learn that the title of America’s favorite dog has been held by one breed for nearly 30 years!
Five reasons why the Labrador is America’s number one dog
For 29 years, the Labrador has been the number one dog in America – and for a good reason! Labradors, especially White Labradors and English Labradors, are known for their fun, affectionate, and cheerful personalities, which make them such great company. In addition, their calm and peaceful temperament, high intelligence, and exciting and unique color variations make this breed very popular with Americans.
If you think about it, you probably grew up in a neighborhood with at least one Labrador, right? We know we did!
#1 The intelligence of a Labrador
When it comes to intelligent dogs, you may automatically think of dogs like border collies, Australian shepherds, German shepherds, and the like. It turns out, however, that the English Labrador has been bred to be both tough and smart!
Keep in mind that Labrador Retrievers are meant to retrieve – which means they need to be able to follow a trail, track it and bring something back to their owner – which is very demanding.
When Labradors were bred in Newfoundland hundreds of years ago, they were selected for their ability to withstand the environment. This gave them an active and intelligent mind, which requires a high level of activity and mental stimulation. Even if your White Labrador enjoys relaxing with you at home, chances are they will hear every word you say, watch your every move and be on guard if you give a command.
#2 A Labrador’s temperament
Both English and White Labradors are known for their personalities. They are undoubtedly brilliant, active and robust, but Labradors are also known to be a bit clumsy! At least in the beginning. As they grow older, Labradors gradually show the intelligence that has made them so popular in the United States and Canada.
Remember, Labradors were bred to retrieve, which means they are made for adventure. As Labradors grow, they become more curious about the world around them. They love to search, sniff, and listen, all with calm, happy, and playful smiles. This is precisely what makes them excellent family dogs. Labradors are friendly dogs that are always looking to bond with their owners.
#3 Labradors as pets
English Labradors are popular family pets for various reasons – their temperament and loyalty are undoubtedly strong arguments, but there are others! According to the American Kennel Club, Labradors are friendly dogs that love to love and be loved. They are also active! Labradors love to go outside, play tag, walk, or roll in the grass on a hot summer afternoon.
And while some Labradors can grow quite large, their gentle, patient, and playful nature makes them the perfect dog for a family with young children. And believe us, they will bond individually with each family member, as they love to please their owners.
#4 Labradors are trainable
Regarding their intelligence, the most intelligent breeds in the world are among the most trainable dogs – like border collies, German shepherds, etc. But Labradors can be trained too! Remember, Labradors were bred to retrieve; that means they were bred to listen, understand commands and perform actions for their owners.
In the hundreds of years since the first Labradors were created, this level of intelligence and training has not diminished one iota! Labradors love to learn and are always looking for something new. It doesn’t have to be tricked, but things as simple as manners, responding to verbal cues, and more.
#5 Labradors are easy to care for
Did you know that Labradors are natural swimmers? Indeed, they are! Now you may be thinking, what does swimming have to do with how I care for my dog? Well, maybe not too much on the surface because it’s all under the coat! Labradors may be short-haired, but they were bred to swim in the water and retrieve birds, ducks, and other fowl for their owners.
Over time, they have developed a thick topcoat and an undercoat. The rough, short topcoat is thinner in the warmer months and helps protect the dog from overheating. The soft, warm undercoat is water-repellent and keeps the dog dry and warm in the colder months. The double coat makes your Labrador easy to clean, dry, and brush all year round.