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Picking a Healthy Labrador Retriever

Once you have made a choice to bring a Labrador Retriever into your home, there are many important steps that you should take. Ensuring that your Labrador is of initial good health is essential, as this will affect your dog’s development and the amount of care that they require. Choosing a healthy Labrador Retriever is not difficult, if the proper steps are taken with a significant amount of research.

If you are choosing to adopt a Labrador Retriever puppy, there are many key appearance based signs that you can look for, to ensure that the puppy is healthy. The first of these, and perhaps the most apparent, is the overall disposition of the puppy. A healthy puppy should be moderately active, playful, and have constant interactions with the other puppies and the mother dog.

It’s also important to pay attention to the mother dog’s attitude towards her puppies, as this can be a telltale sign of the quality and characteristics of the breed-line. If the mother dog seems indifferent to her puppies, or is discouraging them from nursing at an early age, this could be a sign of temperament problems in the breed, as well as possible developmental problems if the puppies are malnourished. The mother dog is the primary source of emotional/physical nourishment for newborn puppies, and it is very important to be certain that she is providing adequate care.

Another important visual sign of a healthy puppy is overall hygiene. A puppy in good health should have a clean nose, crust-free eyes, and a clean behind. If there is any discharge or discoloration around these areas, it could signify a troublesome health problem, as well as inattentive maternal care (as the mother is initially responsible for grooming her puppies). This could also be a sign of poor development of the internal organs, especially if the puppy seems to have difficulty breathing.

If the discharge or excretions are symptoms of a bacterial or viral infection, it could be a sign that the puppy’s immune system isn’t fully developed. There are powerful antibodies in the mother dog’s milk for the first few days of nursing, which are essential for guarding a puppy’s immune system against infection. The lack of a strong immune system in a puppy could be a sign that the mother isn’t’ receiving adequate nutrition.

Due to the possibility of inherited health problems in purebred Labrador Retrievers, there are several aspects of a Labrador’s appearance and mobility that can be tested to determine if they may become a problem. Since Labradors have joint problems, it is benificial to ensure that the Labrador that you’re selecting has good mobility, and shows no pain or difficulty in any joint area.

Labrador Retrievers are also known to have eye problems, which is an easy condition to detect by visual examination. A healthy Labrador’s eyes should be bright, attentive, and completely clear of discoloration. Possible signs of eye problems would be irregularities in the retina, cloudiness, streaking, or small spots obscuring the eye area. Eye problems in Labrador Retrievers can also be a sign of poor nutrition, which can be responsible for many other hidden health problems.

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  1. Hi. Aren’t they still big even they are malnourish? Because of their traits, it’s hard to judge them base on the behavior they have. If they are jumping while playing, or rolling on the floor like crazy,that does not tell you that they are fed correctly or well cared wrong? So we really stick on science here right? Observe their inside and you will see the real answer to this question “are they healthy?”