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Thread: How Labradors are Supposed to Look? (pics)

  1. #151
    Junior Member MountainAir's Avatar
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    Very interesting thread. My wife and I just got done looking at a few pics on google. She says they look more like a cross between a pitbull, bulldog, with a little bit of lab thrown into them.
    Be Better today then yesterday, be better tomorrow then today.

  2. #152
    Senior Member Swack's Avatar
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    Rnd,

    Sorry if I misread your post. I thought you said he was Chocolate and yellow factored. I now understand that you meant he was chocolate factored and yellow factored. He may have been. I'm not sure of this.

    I'm not sure whether to fault my reading comprehension or your writing clairity. Maybe both! That's one mistake apiece for us this year.

    It can be tough when writing a post to make a statement clearly. You can't write as if you're speaking because with no vocal inflections the meaning can be misread.

    I think there is a world of difference in type between Tweed and Avon. I'd like to find a good stud dog with talent, brains, and Avon's type. Anybody know of one?

    Swack
    Last edited by Swack; 12-21-2012 at 09:23 PM.
    Jeff Swackhamer

  3. #153
    Senior Member Swack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MountainAir View Post
    Very interesting thread. My wife and I just got done looking at a few pics on google. She says they look more like a cross between a pitbull, bulldog, with a little bit of lab thrown into them.
    Mountain Air,

    What type of dog pic's were you viewing? Show Labs, field Labs, old time Labs?

    Swack
    Jeff Swackhamer

  4. #154
    Senior Member Rnd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swack View Post
    Rnd,

    Sorry if I misread your post. I thought you said he was Chocolate and yellow factored. I now understand that you meant he was chocolate factored and yellow factored. He may have been. I'm not sure of this.

    I'm not sure whether to fault may reading comprehension or your writing clairity. Maybe both! That's one mistake apiece for us this year.

    It can be tough when writing a post to make a statement clearly. You can't write as if you're speaking because with no vocal inflections the meaning can be misread.

    I thing there is a world of difference in type between Tweed and Avon. I'd like to find a good stud dog with talent, brains, and Avon's type. Anybody know of one?

    Swack

    X2................ Sometimes very hard to "communicate" via the net

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  5. #155
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    Since we're looking at older representations of the breed, isn't this what the original supposedly looked like before the Britts and Scotts had their way with them?

  6. #156
    Senior Member suepuff's Avatar
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    There are plenty of us out there, including Angie, that are breeding middle of the road labs that don't look like Greyhounds or Rotties and have the physical structure to be successful hunting and doing hunt tests and competitive in the show ring....though it does take us longer to succeed there.

    If you'd like to see some, I would be happy to list sights. You cannot blanket judge based on a picture or two, regardless of breed.

    Sue Puff
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    www.boynelabradors.com

  7. #157
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    Back in the teen's and 20's there was a dog that was heavily used named Peter of Faskally. He was used extensively in GB and has a lot (possibly 1/2) Flatcoat Retriever.

    peter of faskally.jpg

    The flat coat was the premier retriever at the turn of the last century and I am sure there was a lot more Flatcoat crosses in the breeding pool prior to the Stud book closing. Looking at him, I wonder if that is where the leaness was brought into the gene pool.
    Kathleen

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  8. #158
    Senior Member Swack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ironman View Post
    Since we're looking at older representations of the breed, isn't this what the original supposedly looked like before the Britts and Scotts had their way with them?
    Ironman,

    Not according to my sources. On my desk beside me is a book entitled Instructions to Young Sportsmen in all that pertains to Guns and Shooting by Lt. Col. Peter Hawker. It was first published in 1814. My copy is of the 9th edition published in 1844. It contains what I believe to be the first published use of the term "Labrador" in reference to the Lesser Newfoundland or St. John's waterdog. The first edition of this book was written shortly after the St. John's waterdogs were first recorded to have been acquired by the 2nd Earl of Malmesbury near Poole Harbour, England. Therefore, I believe that Col. Hawker's written description is of the dogs as they appeared off the boats from Newfoundland before they had been tampered with by the Brit's. Here is some of what he said under the heading NEWFOUNDLAND DOGS.

    "Here we are a little in the dark. Every canine brute, that is nearly as big as a jackass, and as hairy as a bear, is denominated a fine Newfoundland dog. Very different, however, are both the proper Labrador and St. John's breed of these animals; at least, many characteristic points are required, in order to distinguish them.

    The one is very large; strong in the limbs; rough haired; small in the head; and carries his tail very high. He is kept in that country for drawing sledges full of wood, from inland to the sea shore, where he is also very useful, by his immense strength and sagacity, among wrecks, and other disasters in boisterous weather.

    The other, by far the best for every kind of shooting, is oftener black than any other colour, and scarcely bigger than a pointer. He is made rather long in the head and nose; pretty deep in the chest; very fine in the legs; has short or smooth hair; does not carry his tail so much curled as the other; and is extremely quick and active in running, swimming, or fighting."

    Another description from the earliest beginnings of the breed is in a letter the 3rd Earl of Malmesbury wrote to the 6th Duke of Buccleuch in Scotland in about 1887. In that letter the Earl states:

    "We always called mine Labrador dogs and I have kept the breed as pure as I could from the first had from Poole, at that time carrying on a brisk trade with Newfoundland. The real breed may be known by their having a close coat which turns the water off like oil, above all a tail like an otter."

    In both descriptions they mention that the Labrador (or lesser Newfoundland or St. John's waterdog) has a short coat or smooth hair. The dog in the picture you posted does not meet that description. Nor does he have a tail like an otter which the 3rd Earl of Malmesbury said was a trait "above all" that distinguished the "real breed".

    As Col. Hawker hinted when he started the section on Newfoundland Dogs with the sentence, "Here we are a little in the dark.", there was some confussion in the early years about what a proper St. John's water dog was like. They were only kept pure in the hands of a very few people like the Earl's of Malmesbury, the Duke's of Buccleugh, and a circle of their close friends and relatives. There was lots of interbreeding that took place in the early years before the breed was offically recognized by the Kennel Club (UK) in 1903. In fact, there are records of "Interbreds" earning awards in the early years of British retriever field trials. This confusion and/or the common practice of interbreeding is why you may find pictures labeled as being of an early Labrador or St. John's Dog which do not accurately represent the proper type. I believe the written accounts like those I've quoted above and a few early (pre-1900) photographs like those of Nell and Avon provide the best account of what the Original Labrador really looked like.

    Swack
    Last edited by Swack; 12-20-2012 at 02:33 PM.
    Jeff Swackhamer

  9. #159
    Senior Member firehouselabs's Avatar
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    My old man Al is close to looking like the dogs of the late 1800's. I am currently trying to find an FC and or AFC stud that matches his conformation. He has a thick double coat, thick otter tail that is also the correct length, his angles were/are really nice (currently stands on three legs due to accident), and his head is broad, chiseled, squared muzzle, and correct ears in thickness and length, positioned well and his eyes and expression meet the standard as written as well. Well sprung ribs, deep broad chest, short coupled loin/back, and correct height for a male. His temperament is good and health wise I couldn't ask for a better dog. I wish I had bought him as a pup instead of as a 2 1/2 yr old, and had sent him off for training instead of making him my go to gun dog, he would have had more "prestigious" titles instead of the HRC Started title that he holds which we did when he was 5 yrs old. Al is going to be 10 yrs old in Feb.

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  10. #160
    Senior Member Howard N's Avatar
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    Do you think that even back in the age of founding the breed, that opinions differed on what a proper retriever should look like?
    Howard Niemi

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