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The Labrador dog

by Fernando Labrador

Every pedigree dog lover knows that the Labrador is one of the best hunter dog races, and one of the nicest as well. But, before explaining its qualities and before the awes; First and foremost, it is worth mentioning the origin of the name since most people either mistake it or unaware of it. Obviously, the subject is interesting for me. If you, reader, have paid attention to the surname of the author of this article then you know why.

The word ‘Labrador’ in Spanish language means “ploughman” or “farmer”. Labrador is also the name of a Canadian peninsula, which is the reason whereby many people think that this dog race originates from there. Nonetheless, the origin is Newfoundland, other region of Canada. There weren’t indigenous dogs when white men arrived there. The first settlers were Basque, English, Portuguese and Brittany fishermen. They led different dog races from their countries. Those crossings were the birth of the new well-known and appreciated race. Historians don’t agree about the origin of the name for that race, which coincides with other different place of Canada.

The Labradors helped to the Newfoundland fishermen in their work tasks. They became essential. The dogs did chores both on the boats and in land. The Labradors were able to work until for twenty hours in a row. They carried the nets of the fishermen, helped to spread it, and captured the fish that tried to escape. The dogs also watched the stores and the warehouses where were added salt in the cods by the fishermen.

Even, those dogs had the ability to swim, which has survived and the dogs of this race are considered as, probably, the best swimmer dogs. Their short and repellent fur was so appreciated as well because they didn’t hurl water inside the boats. Recognized by the Kennel Club as a distinct breed in 1903, the Labrador Retriever has been much celebrated around the world for its intelligence, even temperament and all-round ability. Although the Labradors became famous for their knack to work hard as a fishermen helpers, nowadays they are most of all praised for their qualities as a pet in a family house.

The Labrador dog is the perfect company dog. Actually, blind people often use them as a guide dog. Such a good retriever hunter dog, they would usually picked up the newspaper or the slippers of its owners, or any stuff hurled to them.

They are very affectionate with children, they are calm, and they don’t mind living in a small flat. Its taste of smell is so good as they are usually chosen as police dog in customs. Besides, their behaviour is incredible in rescue parties. Even, they “work” as a therapeutic doctors in geriatric and drug addicts centres. More virtues? They are friendly with other dogs and other animals too, not only with children. They are quite playful, so easy-training, very nimble, and are extremely fond of their carers.

And we don’t have to forget the smiling nice expression of their faces, and their beauty, whereby they often star in advertising campaigns on the television or shine in many cans of dog food with their picture.

I am getting used to hear the question “Like the dog?” or the exclamation “Like the dog!” when I pronounce my surname overseas of Spain, in English speaking countries such is Malta. Do you think I mind? Not in the least, because I think over myself “Yes, my surname is Labrador, as the nicest of dogs”.

Donated by Fernando Labrador

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