Labrador Retrievers have been one of the most popular breeds in U.S. and Canada for more than a decade. However, if you’re looking for a Lab pup, finding the perfect one can be a challenging task. It isn’t as easy as searching for Lab puppies on Google and picking from the top results! The best way to find a healthy puppy is to look for a conscientious breeder who has a real love for the breed and is dedicated to his breeding responsibility.
When you look at prospective Lab breeders, you need to ask a lot more questions than just the price of the puppy. As these are popular breeds, many breeders tend to breed just for quantity and not quality. But by asking the following questions, you can differentiate between them and ensure you get a healthy and happy pup that fits well into your family!
1. Can I meet the parents?
If you are able to interact with the parents of the Lab, you will get an idea of what to expect from your puppy. Take note of how big the parents are, what is their temperament like, and how do they look. Understanding these factors will help you get a glimpse of your Lab’s future.
2. Have the parents undergone required health tests?
It is better to make sure that the parents have been tested and there are no genetic diseases that may be common in the breed.
3. What’s your experience with Labrador Retriever breeding?
You should know how long the breeder has been breeding this specific breed so that they are well-aware of the strengths and weaknesses of Labs. Also, you can ask if the breeder is involved in any organizations, breeding clubs or canine sporting events.
4. What’s your strategy to socialize your puppies?
It is highly important that puppies are properly socialized to ensure that they become adjusted to other dogs once they grow up. Find out if the puppies are comfortable around people, other dogs, and a general household environment. Make sure they aren’t unusually shy or scared. This will help you analyze whether they will fit into your home and life once you make them yours.
5. Are the Lab puppies up to date on vaccinations?
The breeder must be aware of the shot schedule of the Labrador Retriever and ensure that he is duly vaccinated. Also, having the right medical information will help you continue his vaccinations as per his growth once you bring him home.
6. Do you offer a contract and health guarantee?
You must know what will happen in case the puppy has a serious health condition. Also, check with the breeder if he will take the puppy back in case you are no longer able to take care of it. Having a health guarantee on your Lab puppy will give you an added assurance of a healthy life ahead for your pooch.
7. When can I take the puppy home?
While you may be really excited to bring your new friend home, your breeder must advise you to wait until he is at least 8 to 12 weeks old. During this time, they must socialize with their mothers and litter mates and get some time to mature before they enter a family home.
8. Can I contact you in case of any questions?
Your breeder can be a great mentor and resource for your experience with a Labrador. He must encourage you to contact him in case of any queries or doubts when raising your new friend.
Choosing the right breeder is one of the toughest tasks related to bringing a Labrador Retriever home. The breeder must be caring, responsible, and disciplined about breeding to ensure you get a healthy and happy Lab pup.