Originally Posted by maybe532
I just purchased a few books about labrador retrievers and they all mention that there are two types of labs, show and field. They also say there is a difference in energy level and drive between the two types. Some of you may have read my other thread but for those of you that haven't, my family and I are getting another dog next year (summertime) and we are trying to decide between a lab and a golden. We are wanting a dog that excels in obedience, is able to do agility, is excellent with children, gets along with other dogs, and is a family companion. Originally I was thinking Aussie or Brittany but I am drawn to labs. Plus Aussies have a high drive for herding and I'm not sure if that's a good mix with a 3 year old. I am considering goldens because my husband likes them a great deal. I prefer the no-fuss coat of the lab but really I'd rather have the best companion for us.
Anyhow, my question is how high is the field-type lab energy levels? Or, if you know of another breed I can relate to with similar energy levels that is fine too.
The field type seem to have the qualities I am looking for but I just want to see what I am getting myself into. I think we can handle lots of energy but if it's like a border collie then no, we can't. We are an outdoorsy family (lots of walks, trips to the park, stuff like that) and I am really hoping our dog will retrieve, I think it'll be a great activity for my daughter and me to bond with our dog.
If any of you have any experience I'd love to hear it. Thanks!
Who told you Labs have a "no fuss" coat??? That's a crock. You'll have hair all over your house and not even know til you check the corners. The throw their coat at about a year old and then some do it more often after that than others. You still have to brush and groom to get dead hair off so the shedding isn't as bad.
The qualities you are looking for are dead on in Labs, so I'd stick with the Lab if I was you. All hunting bred dogs, regardless of if they show or not, are going to have pretty high energy levels. I know some people that have their Labs inside and for the most part they are quite and chilled out. They do get the zoomies and go barreling through the house chasing each other when they haven't been out for awhile though. They will also need 30 minute walks (minimum) each time you take them out to keep the energy level lower while inside. If you don't plan on keeping them inside, then don't bother getting a Lab. They are very family oriented and DO NOT do well outside or away from their family pack. The more they are seperated the more high energy, needy and jump uppy they will be.
Walk 'em, play with 'em in water or with sticks/dummies and keep 'em occupied inside with simpler play and toys and you'll be fine. Make sure you train early on and include "come" early on. Sit and lay will be really easy for you...and probably shake. Stay is harder sometimes but can be done. Get them used to a leash early on and get heel down quickly otherwise you'll find yourself drug across the yard. You may want to get a body harness as well during those first few months of training.