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#6929090 - 10/22/17 04:57 PM Labrador Questions
TurkeyWhisperer Offline
Tracker

Registered: 01/28/08
Posts: 850
Loc: Aledo, Tx
Looking to get our first Lab sometime in the next few months. Will primarily be a family pet. But would like to train and hunt some with it as well. Had a few questions:

1. What color is best for obedience, hunting, family pet? Or is there not really a big difference?

2. English or American Lab and why?

3. How should I expect to pay?

Thanks!

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#6929138 - 10/22/17 05:49 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
Guy Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 12/06/05
Posts: 27274
Loc: Lake X
Your answeres...
1) Color is cosmetic only. Like saying what's faster, red or black corvette?
2) I say cosmetic again, you want block head or narrow head?
3) Cash is king.

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#6929377 - 10/22/17 08:33 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
Exbellicus Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 01/24/08
Posts: 1495
Loc: DFW
Probably unpopular opinion here...but if it's just going to be a house dog that you hunt with sometimes you can train any lab to retrieve ducks. By train I mean any lab will retrieve things already, you don't have to train them. You do have to train them to sit quietly in the stand next to you, be steady on gunfire, and bring the duck back to you. The time you spend training your dog is far more important than how much you forked over to get it home. If you have no interest in doing hunt trials or guiding professionally, a $300 backyard dog isn't going to be much different than a $2000 top pedigree dog. You are going to pay more for health clearances like hip and eye certs and AKC registered dogs. If both parents are available to see you might be able to evaluate temperament and drive a little better. Just have to decide if it's worth the money to you.

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#6929785 - 10/23/17 08:15 AM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
TurkeyWhisperer Offline
Tracker

Registered: 01/28/08
Posts: 850
Loc: Aledo, Tx
Thanks!

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#6929872 - 10/23/17 09:12 AM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: Exbellicus]
Judd Online   content


Registered: 01/22/09
Posts: 11414
Loc: Sachse, TX
Originally Posted By: Exbellicus
a $300 backyard dog isn't going to be much different than a $2000 top pedigree dog. You are going to pay more for health clearances like hip and eye certs and AKC registered dogs.


I don't agree with this at all. The health clearances and breeding the right pair of dogs to set you up for success that is what you are paying for...almost all $300 are two buddies with labs hooking them up to get 2500-3000 for the litter and almost ZERO attention paid to health clearances and temperament/drive factors.

You get what you pay for in a high performing gun dog. Not saying there aren't deals out there because there is but they won't come at $300 and they aren't even close to being the same dogs.

I agree with Guy on his answers.
_________________________
Originally Posted By: Phil Robertson
Don't let your ears hear what your eyes didn't see, and don't let your mouth say what your heart doesn't feel

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#6929890 - 10/23/17 09:25 AM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
MS1454 Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 01/27/08
Posts: 2924
Loc: Houston/Sealy
If you have limited experience, one of those 2k might be too much for you to handle anyway.
_________________________
Originally Posted By: Fooshman
I'll take a Black Female every time.


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#6930110 - 10/23/17 12:39 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
BradyBuck Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/18/07
Posts: 5523
Loc: Abilene, TX
Here are a few things you need to really take into consideration.

#1 Color is just preference but in general there are more black labs overall and more black labs running upper level Field Trials and more in Hunt test as well. With that said you will have no issue finding very well bred and healthy pups from all three colors. Those colors are black, yellow and chocolate and those colors only.

The most important thing IMO is Health. It is more than worth the initial investment to purchase a puppy out of health tested parents. Minimum EIC, CNM along with OFA hips, elbows and eye certifications. You’ll want a breeder that offers a 26 month health guarantee.



#2 True English Field bred dogs don’t look any different than American Field bred dogs. The term “English lab” has been turned into a slang word for the bigger block headed type labs.

Buy pup that out of parents that are titled or at minimum you have been able to observe them work and know they can do what you want your pup to do.

#3 expect to pay $800-$1500 to get a pup out of titled, health tested parents. The initial cost could save you much much more in the long run.



I sold a litter of pups about 9 years ago and luckily all those pups that I’m aware of are healthy and good hunting/house pets. I didn’t know a lot about the “right” way to do things and got lucky.

I personally won’t buy or breed another pup or litter from untested parents. It’s to big a risk and you could end up paying more in the long run.





Edited by BradyBuck (10/23/17 02:35 PM)

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#6930388 - 10/23/17 04:35 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: Exbellicus]
BarneyWho Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 11/09/04
Posts: 2957
Loc: Fort Worth, TX
Originally Posted By: Exbellicus
a $300 backyard dog isn't going to be much different than a $2000 top pedigree dog.


that's pretty inaccurate (trying to bite my tongue). After having bought a backyard breed lab and watched it suffer with hips going out to having to make the decision to put it down, I'd highly suggest you do your homework and buy a quality breed dog with the health certifications. This dog will become part of your family. So, do yourself and your family the justice of buying a dog that doesn't have a history of a hip or eye disorder. I'm not saying run out and buy a $2000 dog, but I'd at least buy one where the sire and dam have hip and eye certs. I'd want my dogs to be EIC and CNM clear as well.
_________________________

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#6930421 - 10/23/17 04:54 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: Judd]
huck18 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 03/04/10
Posts: 1834
Loc: Ft. Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: Judd
Originally Posted By: Exbellicus
a $300 backyard dog isn't going to be much different than a $2000 top pedigree dog. You are going to pay more for health clearances like hip and eye certs and AKC registered dogs.


I don't agree with this at all. The health clearances and breeding the right pair of dogs to set you up for success that is what you are paying for...almost all $300 are two buddies with labs hooking them up to get 2500-3000 for the litter and almost ZERO attention paid to health clearances and temperament/drive factors.

You get what you pay for in a high performing gun dog. Not saying there aren't deals out there because there is but they won't come at $300 and they aren't even close to being the same dogs.

I agree with Guy on his answers.


I agree with all this. Spend the extra money and get a quality pup. Expect to spend $800-1,200 depending on the pedigree. A $300 dog will be WAY more likely to have hip and elbow dysplasia than a $1,000 due to lack of testing for health issues. You get what you pay for.

1. Color doesn't matter, but don't get one of the designer colors like silver or red. Labs should be Black, Yellow or Chocolate.

2. Doesn't matter assuming they both come from a good high quality pedigree with health clearances. From what I've seen the Americans tend to be a little smaller, lighter, faster and more hard charging than the British labs, but both can make damn fine dogs just depends what you want. I have an American field trail lab and he is really hard charging in the field but lazy as could be in the house. He is a great house dog, people call this the "on/off switch", but not all dogs are that way.

3. Most breeders will take a check but like Guy said cash is king.

Look on the Retriever Training Forum for upcoming litters.

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#6930482 - 10/23/17 05:39 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
BradyBuck Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/18/07
Posts: 5523
Loc: Abilene, TX
I agree with the above statement except for the thoughts about “red” labs.

Unlike the other designer colors like silver, charcoal or champagne the dark yellow/red color has been documented since the beginning of the breed.

There are several FC AFC dogs that would be concidered “fox red” the important thing with color is to streer clear of breeders breeding only for color or color being their main selling point.

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#6930512 - 10/23/17 06:03 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
Fooshman Offline
THF Celebrity

Registered: 07/26/06
Posts: 13984
Loc: Black Dog, Texas
1. Black
2. Both
3. Tamales (if "much" was supposed to be in your question, the answer is how many tamales do you want to part with)
_________________________

Custom Crosses and Plaques

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#6930522 - 10/23/17 06:08 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
scalebuster Online   content
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 11/25/10
Posts: 2647
I was having a conversation with some buddies around the campfire I was dove hunting with a couple of weeks ago about their labs. I had my Shorthair pup with me. All of them had fine lab retrievers. One of them was selling his gyp for $7500 and having second thoughts about it, but his other dogs were just as good. I'm no lab guy and have only had one chocolate that was just ok. Every one of them swore against the chocolates and had different bad experiences with them. They claim they have been bred for the Color too much. They convinced me. If I were to buy another one, which I never would, it would be a black.

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#6930557 - 10/23/17 06:35 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: scalebuster]
BradyBuck Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 10/18/07
Posts: 5523
Loc: Abilene, TX
Originally Posted By: scalebuster
I was having a conversation with some buddies around the campfire I was dove hunting with a couple of weeks ago about their labs. I had my Shorthair pup with me. All of them had fine lab retrievers. One of them was selling his gyp for $7500 and having second thoughts about it, but his other dogs were just as good. I'm no lab guy and have only had one chocolate that was just ok. Every one of them swore against the chocolates and had different bad experiences with them. They claim they have been bred for the Color too much. They convinced me. If I were to buy another one, which I never would, it would be a black.


I think there is some truth to that. There have been breeders who bred just for the brown color.

However, the all time high point derby dog is chocolate and there are numerous AFC FC chocolates and too many fine Hunt Test dogs to count. One of top producing studs in the hunt test game is
4X GRHRCH UH Big Mamou's Run Forest Run MH, MNH5** who is chocolate





Edited by BradyBuck (10/23/17 06:39 PM)

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#6930602 - 10/23/17 07:10 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
Smokey Bear Offline
Bird Dog

Registered: 05/11/17
Posts: 264
Loc: Texas
Well if you are a very experienced dog man and saw what you are looking for, regardless of where it is bred, I wouldn't even have to say go for it. For most everyone else, pedigree and health clearances along with a repeat breeding of a proven cross, really stack the odds of ending up with what you want in your favor. One thing that has not been mentioned is bidability. Ask the breeder. If you don't hear what you want keep looking. For a first time gundog owner, a very biddable dog can make things go sooo much easier.

As for color, anyone that has been around many labs has seen some very good ones in all three colors. Let performance be your guide. After saying that, lighter and tighter coats are an advantage in the Texas summers.

Good luck with the new dog,


Edited by Smokey Bear (10/23/17 07:11 PM)
_________________________
Smokey Bear---Lone Star State.

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#6930678 - 10/23/17 07:54 PM Re: Labrador Questions [Re: TurkeyWhisperer]
TurkeyWhisperer Offline
Tracker

Registered: 01/28/08
Posts: 850
Loc: Aledo, Tx
Thanks everyone! Great info. I just realized I left out the word “much” in my third question. Haha!

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