Labrador se ubraja u pse srednje veličine, jake građe i čvrstih kostiju. Širok nos i lobanja čija je stopa jasno izražena, jaka vilica i ne mnogo velike uši koje vise pored glave, malo zabačene unazad, predstavljaju glavna obeležja izgleda glave labradora. Ipak, najveći utisak ostavljaju nežne i inteligentne, smeđe ili boje lešnika oči srednje veličine koje će saosećati sa svakim ljudskim raspoloženjem i konstantno podsećati vlasnika na iskreno prijateljstvo i bezgraničnu odanost. Vrat je jak, grudni koš labradora je širok i dubok. U zavisnosti od podvrste konstitucija labradora varira. Engleski labrador je krupnije konstitucije i kraćih nogu, dok se američka podvrsta odlikuje atletskom građom, viša je i vitkija. Dlaka labradora je uvek jednobojna, crna, braon (boja čokolade) ili žuta, koja može varirati od krem do žuto riđe nijanse. Bez obzira na boju roditelja, u jednom leglu mogu se pojaviti štenci različitih boja budući da, kao i kod boje kose kod ljudi na samu pigmentaciju utiču dva gena. Kratka, oštra i ravna, gusta dlaka i meka podlaka ne upijaju vodu i ne otežavaju psa prilikom plivanja, istovremeno pružajući dobru toplotnu izolaciju i stvarajući otpornost na niske temperature. Šape labradora poseduju plovne kožice, što ovom psu dodatno obezbeđuje sposobnost brzog plivanja. Rep je takođe koncipiran tako da poboljšava plivačke performanse. Kao kod vidre, zaobljen je, deblji u osnovi i stanjuje se ka vrhu. Prosečna visina labradora iznosi 56 do 61cm kada su u pitanju mužjaci, i 54 do 59cm kada se radi o ženkama. Uobičajena težina je 27 do 34kg za mužjake i 25 do 32kg za ženke.
An early report by a Colonel Hawker described the dog as "by far the best for any kind of shooting. He is generally black and no bigger than a Pointer, very fine in legs, with short, smooth hair and does not carry his tail so much curled as the other; is extremely quick, running, swimming and fighting....and their sense of smell is hardly to be credited...."[17]
Outside North America and Western Europe, the Labrador arrived later. For example, the Russian Retriever Club traces the arrival of Labradors to the late 1960s, as household pets of diplomats and others in the foreign ministry.[75] The establishment of the breed in the Commonwealth of Independent States (former USSR) was initially hindered by the relatively small numbers of Labradors and great distances involved, leading to difficulty establishing breedings and bloodlines;[75] at the start of the 1980s, home-born dogs were still regularly supplemented by further imports from overseas.[75] Difficulties such as these initially led to Labradors being tacitly cross-bred to other types of retriever.[75] In the 1990s, improved access to overseas shows and bloodlines is said to have helped this situation become regularised.[75]
A vigorous dog may or may not be high-energy, but everything he does, he does with vigor: he strains on the leash (until you train him not to), tries to plow through obstacles, and even eats and drinks with great big gulps. These dynamos need lots of training to learn good manners, and may not be the best fit for a home with young kids or someone who's elderly or frail. A low-vigor dog, on the other hand, has a more subdued approach to life.
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