Does Your Labrador Retriever have an Oral Obsession?

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Power and stamina combined with the motivation to both track down fallen game as well as swimming any distance necessary to fetch the prey were the aspects that Labrador Retrievers were bred for.

Despite the fact that the majority of Labrador Retrievers are household pets and not employed as hunting dogs, they are extremely serious about their jobs no matter what environment they are in. Whether they are chasing a stick or playing with their favorite toy, they are driven by determination and focus.

Retrieving is their inherent capability and this is evidenced by their determination and focus that they apply when hunting with their masters. Additionally, they have been trained to take advantage of their powerful jaws.

However, it is these jaws that create a need for them to constantly have something in their mouths and anything that will fit is considered fair game to them. The bottom line is that Labradors have what is commonly referred to as an "oral obsession."

Unfortunately, most new dog owners make the critical mistake of not researching the particular breed they are interested in bringing home as a new pet. Understanding the breed and its genetics is crucial when you are considering acquiring a dog that is more sophisticated than the ordinary mutt.

Purchasing or adopting a specialized breed of dog just because a family member or a neighbor has one is foolish reasoning and most often this will come back to haunt you. So do your homework and avoid making a mistake that you will eventually regret.

So the fact that Labs have an inherent oral obsession due to hundreds of years and generations of breeding is also a key reason behind their behavior even as a house pet. If you are going to be a Lab owner, it is critical that you realize how anything that can fit in your dog's mouth is going to be viewed as fair game.

I have even known people that have complained about their Labs "eating" their furniture. Therefore, yelling at your dog is unacceptable since they are only behaving as they were bred to do.

Be aware of the fact that the difference between allowing the dog to exercise its inherent skills and destroying household items is a very fine line so specific forms of obedience and training exercises should be employed once the puppy is about 6 months to a year old. Simply stated, they have been bred to chew so one of your primary responsibilities as an owner is to dog proof your home before you ever bring the puppy into it.

Developing a daily routine that includes watchful supervision is the second critical step, but unfortunately, some pet owners realize too quickly that they have bitten off way more than they can chew when bringing a Labrador puppy into the home.

Additionally, this is a breed that requires an above average amount of love and attention, otherwise they will constantly try to escape thinking that they have been separated from their family. The outcome will be disastrous for both you and the dog.

You will become frustrated and unhappy with the situation while the dog will get bored and become disobedient, even to the extent of displaying violent tendencies. This in itself requires that you do that research and perform the due diligence required in order to determine whether or not this is the right breed of dog for you and your family.

Jeff Nenadic from My Dog Shop - Spoil your dog a little bit with an upscale dog bed, an elevated dog feeder, or an airline approved dog carrier!

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