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. 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.
The Labrador Retriever is gentle with children and the elderly. If it is intended as a pet, keep in mind that Labrador puppies are full of energy. The Labrador Retriever has a stable temperament and adapts to new surroundings easily. The Labrador Retriever is not an aggresive dog, but it will bark to ward off strangers.
True Labrador Retriever temperament is as much a hallmark of the breed as the ''otter'' tail. The ideal disposition is one of a kindly, outgoing, tractable nature; eager to please and non-aggressive towards man or animal. The Labrador has much that appeals to people; his gentle ways, intelligence and adaptability make him an ideal dog.
The Labrador Retriever did not come from Labrador, but from Newfoundland. The Labrador Retriever is one of the prime breeds selected as guide and rescue dogs.