Since the time that people domesticated dogs some 15,000 or more years ago, the genus Canis familiaris has evolved into more than 300 varieties. Over the millennia, people have developed dogs to perform tasks ranging from hunting to herding to retrieving. Some breeds are multitaskers, capable of doing many different types of work. The Labrador Retriever is one such breed.
When many of us think of dogs, it's the Lab that often comes to mind. The Labrador Retriever is not one of the oldest breeds of dogs, but it is arguably the most popular and versatile member of the canine family. From their beginnings as fishermen's helpers, they have gone on to become retrievers without equal; guide dogs; assistance dogs; drug-, arson-, and bomb-sniffing dogs; therapy dogs; search-and-rescue dogs; and — of course — family friends. Many of us know at least one person who has a Lab.
Always ready for a game of fetch, willing and able to learn anything you can teach, a friend to all the world, the Lab is everything you could want in a dog. That said, he's often more dog than many people are ready for. It takes a special person to live successfully with a Lab, someone who's active, fun-loving, and caring. Labs are definitely trainable and willing to please, but without guidance they can run amok and make life miserable for their caregivers.
The Everything® Labrador Retriever Book will help you recognize and understand the Lab's needs in life so you can decide whether this is really the right breed for you. In this book, you'll learn about the Lab's history and how he became the dog he is today. You'll also find tips on housetraining, manners, socialization, health issues, dog sports, and dealing with behavior problems. This book will guide you through all phases of your Lab's life, from puppyhood to old age.