- Activity Level: high
- Grooming Level: low
- Trainability: high
- Adaptability: high
- Kid/Pet Friendly: often
- Average Size: Medium
- Average Lifespan: 10-14 years
- Prey Drive: low
- Watchdog: aware
- Registered?: aca, akc
Chocolate Labrador Retriever Breed Profile
Did You Know?
Similar to the other colors of Labrador Retrievers, the Chocolate Lab is an energetic dog that gets along well in a family setting. As a Retriever, it also makes for a great hunting dog and has also been known to fill in other working dog roles in addition to service or guide dog roles. A point of interest is that all modern Chocolate Labs can be traced to three specific Black Labradors that lived during the 1880s.
Chocolate Labs are industrious little pups. They were bred for retrieval and will often sniff about for something to get into. They are famously even-tempered and will put up with a lot before even showing irritation. This makes them fantastic dogs for a growing family, as they tend to be naturally gentle and patient with little ones. Plus, they’ll love the extra attention and people available for cuddle or playtime. However, you should never put a dog through unnecessary poking, prodding, or rough play. So, it’s important to teach your children how to act around dogs, interact with them, and handle them appropriately.
These dogs are highly adaptable. Their natural urge to dig and bark once agitated can be quelled with a little training and some exercise. Chocolate Labs are independent and don’t need your focus every minute of every day. They’re perfectly happy standing guard in a corner or investigating in another room. These dogs will happily jump about in a room of kids or relax on the couch for some quality time with you.
They will thrive in homes with fenced-in yards where they can run freely. They can adapt well to apartment living as long as they receive plenty of exercise, attention, and mental stimulation. Their double coat makes them well-suited for almost any climate. As with most dogs, they are sensitive to extreme heat or cold.
Generally speaking, Chocolate Labs are healthy dogs. They can develop disorders of the eyes and joints, but, as long as they are attending veterinarian visits regularly, will stay perfectly healthy.
Labrador Retrievers are known for their patience and adaptability, which makes them excellent dogs for beginners. They require minimal training and respond well to commands. This, paired with their eagerness to please, makes them a highly trainable dog breed. If you go the extra mile, Chocolate Labs can be taught life-saving techniques like those used for search and rescue. These dogs are incredible companions.
Chocolate Labs have very short, water-resistant fur. It’s a double layer, so seasonal heavier shedding occurs twice a year. This kind of coat makes swimming in water year-round a cinch for these dogs, as its density protects them from the cold. Their fur should be washed down every so often, especially if they’re avid swimmers. Brushing their coat once a week or a few times a week will help keep it healthy and keep your dog more comfortable.
It’s also important to trim your dog’s nails monthly, check their ears regularly, and brush their teeth. Floppy ears tend to trap dirt, moisture, and debris. So, checking your Lab’s ears regularly and carefully cleaning them as needed can help prevent ear infections. Proper dental for dogs is imperative to help prevent painful dental diseases like gum disease or tooth decay. Brushing your dog’s teeth or using an enzyme toothpaste every day will prevent the tartar buildup that leads to dental disease. You can also supplement your dental care efforts with dental hygiene chews.
This breed tends to be very active and craves exercise. A good hike, run, or swim will soothe a Chocolate Labrador’s active soul. A visit or two to the dog park will make for a very happy, and tired, Lab. Labs tend to mellow out a little once they pass the 2-year mark, but they will still be an active dog.
Chocolate Labs are classified as medium to large dogs. They reach an average height of 23 inches, and an average healthy weight of 75 pounds.
A Chocolate Labrador Retriever will generally live 10-14 years.
The British Kennel Club first recognized the Labrador Retriever in 1903. Fourteen years later, the American Kennel Club did the same in 1917.