Labradors make great pets, and in this article we are going to look at the reasons to own a Labrador. Just as no two people are the same, no two Labradors are either. But whilst each one of them is unique, there are still many common facets that Labradors share. Wonderful parts of their personality, as well as their distinctive look, make them dear to our hearts. Our characterful Labradors hold special places in our families, and make fantastic and much cherished pets.
1. Labradors’ Listen
How often do you get to tell someone about your day, knowing that you won’t have to hear his or her views? Just to get a sounding board to bounce your thoughts and feelings off.
Have a great idea that you don’t want anyone knocking down just yet? We’ve got the perfect listener. Because they love human company, your Labrador will patiently listen to you. Letting you express yourself. But they also let you express your actions, because they don’t judge.
2. They Don’t Judge
Do you like dancing around your living room in your underwear? Do you listen exclusively to 80’s Glam Rock? Do you like to get all dressed up, even when you have nowhere to go? Your family might make you feel like you’ve lost the plot, but I can guarantee that your Labrador won’t.
When you are with him, you are in the company of someone who has not judgements of your character or appearance. He just loves you for being you.
3. They Offer Comfort
Whatever the reason for their actions, a lot of Labradors behave very differently towards you when you are upset.
My teenage years companion was a Labrador called Ted. He was a very bouncy chap. If you bent down towards the floor, he wanted to be right there standing on your head before you’d even made it to a crouch. But if you were upset, you could always sit right down next to him, and he would just gently rest his head in your lap until you were feeling better.
Whether they are sharing your pain, reacting to your changed behaviour, or simply curious, your Labrador knows when you are down and can offer you a real (furry) shoulder to cry on.
4. Labradors Are Gentle
Although Labs can be a bouncy breed, they are also very gentle. Their sweet natures make them some of the safest dogs to have around vulnerable people. They are not naturally inclined to nipping beyond their puppy days, and they are not commonly found to be aggressive. As far as you can trust any dog, you can trust a Labrador.
5. They Give Companionship
You are never alone when you have a Labrador. Even if you live on your own, or your partner works late or overseas for periods of time, you have company at home. The presence of a large, loyal friend in the house makes you feel more relaxed in the evenings. They are someone to talk to, and a trusted friend. From gardening to loading the dishwasher, your friend will be right alongside you. Whether you want him there or not!
6. They Are Enthusiastic
Labradors are an enthusiastic bunch. They are not known for being shy, and simply love the world, including everyone and everything in it. This cheerful approach to life is really refreshing, and contributes to their being a very trainable breed of dog.
7. They Get Stuck In
Whatever you are doing at home, your Labrador wants to be doing it too. Their boundless energy and bold nature certainly keeps life interesting. From jumping through fields of mud, to flying headlong into a murky pond, your Labrador is sure to get stuck in to life.
8. Labradors Are Confident
Labradors were bred as gundogs, and so have an inherent amount of confidence when out and about in the world. This helps them to stay kind, interested and enthusiastic, wherever you might take them.
9. Labradors Are Loyal
Whilst Labradors have a lot of love to give, they are also loyal to their families. Your Lab might want to say hello to everyone and every thing in the park, but he will always want to come back home with you at the end of the day. To curl up on your feet, or squeeze next to you in a space on the sofa that he hasn’t properly occupied since he was 10 weeks old.
10. Labradors Are Brave
There are countless tales of brave deeds committed by Labradors. Whether it’s Labs who were trained to perform certain tasks in dangerous situations, or pets who unexpectedly take risks or go the extra mile to protect their loved ones. They are certainly a heroic breed.
11. Labradors Are Funny
Our Labradors make us laugh. From the immature (sniffing their own farts, and looking appalled springs to mind), to the more generally acceptable levels of humorous (chasing their tails, leaping around like a mad thing). I bet your Labrador gives you at least one extra laugh every day, and who could say they don’t need that in their lives!
12. Labradors Keep Us Fit
Labradors are fairly big dogs, and they are bred to work. So regardless of whether or not they are used as gundogs as well as being family pets, they have a need for a certain amount of exercise every day.
There is no excuse that is going to get you out of getting up early and putting on your walking boots before work.
13. Labradors Help Us Live Longer
It’s been shown that staying healthy is directly related to the amount of exercise you get. As we’ve just seen, when you have a Labrador you get a lot more exercise than you would without him. Every extra step he has you make, will help you to live a longer and healthier life.
14. Labradors Keep Us Busy
A lot of us live very busy lives. Combining work, a family and hobbies. But some people, especially when they have retired or had children move away, can feel life is lacking something. When you have a Labrador, there is always something to be done. You never have to have that drifting ‘what is next’ feeling whilst he is a part of your life.
15. Labradors Encourage Us To Learn
If you share your life with a Labrador, you are a dog trainer. How far you take this responsibility is up to you, but you will need to learn at least the basics in order to maintain a sane and sensible household. Once you have had fun teaching your Labrador some simple commands, you might well find you want to do some more. Training is a great bonding experience, and spending this special time with your Labrador should make you want to learn more ways to work with him.
16. Labradors Are Eager To Please
Whether your Labrador is motivated most by food, hugs or praise, he will also want to please you. It isn’t the best bet to take advantage of this in training without backing it up with treats, but it certainly helps you along your way!
17. Labradors Are Loving
Anyone who owns a Labrador, knows that their Labrador loves them. One of the great things about Labs, is this love is rarely directed just at one person. They have so much love, that they share it with your family, friends and anyone else they happen to meet too.
18. Labradors Make Us Better People
Living with a Labrador is wonderful, but can be trying at times. Staying patient and focussed is vital to maintaining a good relationship with your dog, and it’s a lesson that we can extend to our other dealings in life. Whether it’s getting better at waiting for things, or dealing with people at work or in our families. Our Labradors teach us ways to control our emotional responses, which we can put to good use in other ways every day.
Can you think of any other reasons that your Labrador makes such a great pet? Why not let us know in the comments section below:
The Labrador Site Founder
Pippa Mattinson is the best selling author of The Happy Puppy Handbook, the Labrador Handbook, Choosing The Perfect Puppy, and Total Recall.
She is also the founder of the Gundog Trust and the Dogsnet Online Training Program
Pippa's online training courses were launched in 2019 and you can find the latest course dates on the Dogsnet website