Do you love the big blocky headed Labradors? Then what you are looking for is an English Labrador. Does the long lean, narrow headed Labrador interest you? In this case you are generally looking at the American Labrador.
A Labrador is a Labrador whether English or American. The AKC and the Labrador Retriever Club of America make no distinction. They are one and the same breed. We believe that all Labradors should be bred to conform to the breed standard. It is the standard that makes for a proportional and functional dog. With this being said, we love to see a Labrador do what he was originally bred to do, retrieve the game.
When looking for an English Labrador examine the pedigree. You should see a large number of conformation champions. You will see this with the ‘CH’ designation in front of the dog’s name. English Labradors are those bred for show and conformation, they adhere to the breed standard. They are generally more substantial and stockier with wider, blockier heads and barrel chests. The English also has a shorter body, a noticeably thicker coat and wider tail than the American style. The English Labrador is considered calmer and less active, considered by many to be easier to train.
American style Labradors are generally bred for field trials and hunting. They are usually slimmer, have a thinner coat, longer legs and are bred for their working ability. As a rule they are more active and have a higher energy level than the English style.
When looking for an American style Labrador examine the pedigree and you should see a large number of ‘FC’ designations for Field Champion in front of the dog’s names. These dogs can go all day and are suitable if you desire to become active in field trials. Many, including us here at Cameron Mtn Labradors, feel these dogs are too hyper to make good “house” dogs.
Regardless, either style of Labrador makes a loving companion. Both are kind, intelligent and eager to please.
Here at Cameron Mtn Labradors we seek the best of all worlds. We are breeding English Labradors with the ability to do what they were bred to do. Our dogs will be just as comfortable laid out on the couch as they will be lying in the blind waiting for the go ahead to get the goose. We seek to breed to the conformation standard of the Labrador retriever as it is this standard that suits the perfect companion and gun dog. We seek to breed with the working ability to hunt all day in the field and come home to the hearth in the evening while seeking to please through obedience.
We believe the English Labradors are highly intelligent and have the energy for an active family and are far more suited to the life of a family companion than the highly driven American Labradors more suitable to the outdoor life of hunting and sports.
From the Labrador Retriever Club, Inc…
The Labrador Retriever is a strongly built, medium-sized, short-coupled, dog possessing a sound, athletic, well-balanced conformation that enables it to function as a retrieving gun dog; the substance and soundness to hunt waterfowl or upland game for long hours under difficult conditions; the character and quality to win in the show ring; and the temperament to be a family companion.
Physical features and mental characteristics should denote a dog bred to perform as an efficient Retriever of game with a stable temperament suitable for a variety of pursuits beyond the hunting environment. The most distinguishing characteristics of the Labrador Retriever are its short, dense, weather resistant coat; an “otter” tail; a clean-cut head with broad back skull and moderate stop; powerful jaws; and its “kind” friendly eyes, expressing character, intelligence and good temperament.
Above all, a Labrador Retriever must be well balanced, enabling it to move in the show ring or work in the field with little or no effort. The typical Labrador possesses style and quality without over refinement, and substance without lumber or cloddiness. The Labrador is bred primarily as a working gun dog; structure and soundness are of great importance.
(Labrador Retriever Standard, March 31, 1994 Taken from Labrador Retriever Club, Inc.)