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Labrador or golden retriever: how to tell them apart?

What is the difference between a Labrador and a Golden Retriever? Here, a golden retriever on the left, a labrador on the right. Arterra Picture Library / Alamy via Reuters Connect

Average size, drooping ears, fairly long muzzle… So many physical similarities that do not help to differentiate the Labrador from the Golden Retriever. However, these two breeds of dog are quite distinct. How to recognize them?

the Labrador and the Golden retriever are among the favorite dog breeds of the French in 2021. Praised for their adaptability and their affectionate nature, the Labrador and the Golden Retriever are dog breeds belonging to the same group: game retriever dogs, game retriever dogs and farm dogs. water.

Origin: where do they come from?

Particularly at ease in an aquatic environment, they excel in waterfowl hunting. Stock .adobe

Both the Labrador and the Golden Retriever belong to group 8, which includes 6 dog breeds:

  • the golden retriever
  • the labrador (or Labrador retriever)
  • the chesapeake bay retriever (or chesapeake bay retriever)
  • Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
  • the flat-coated retriever (or flat-coated retriever)
  • the curly coated (or curly coated retriever)

The Labrador and the Golden Retriever are known to be obedient and affectionate dogs. Agile and enduring, they can be used as a shepherd dog, assistance dog or even as a search and rescue dog.

Endowed with an excellent flair and a strong hunting instinct, the Labrador and the Golden Retriever are dogs very popular with hunters. Particularly at ease in an aquatic environment, they excel in waterfowl hunting.

Unlike the Labrador, which originated in Canada, the Golden Retriever is a dog with origins still debated. Its first appearance dates from a dog show in 1909.

Characters: Very affectionate

Sweet, intelligent, easy to educate, attentive to their masters, faithful and serious, the Labrador and the Golden Retriever are not lacking in qualities.

Their temperaments make them pleasant companions for families. If both can live in town, it is essential to take them out regularly, so that he does not gain any excess weight.

Although the Labrador is reputed to be more stubborn than the Golden Retriever, each animal remains unique by its own character, its experience and its education.

The Labrador will require a firm education. The golden retriever is said to be more sensitive. Do not hesitate to ask your veterinarian for advice, there are, in fact, many methods to educate your pet calmly according to its breed.

Physics: how to tell them apart?

The Labrador can be black, yellow or chocolate (brown). Stock .adobe

The Golden Retriever and the Labrador are medium-sized dogs. The Golden Retriever is generally taller and slender and the Labrador is shorter and stockier. The physiology of these dogs of robust constitution remains however similar: drooping ears and of medium size, a broad head with a marked stop, a black nose and an imposing tail.

Table of differences between the two breeds
Labrador Golden retriever
Cut 53 to 59cm 51 to 61cm
Weight 28 to 35 kg 24 to 34 kg
Life expectancy 10 to 12 years old 12 to 14 years old
Price 1000 to 1500 euros 500 to 1000 euros

However, one can notice a difference in hair color. The Labrador can be black, sable or chocolate (brown), while the golden retriever sports a light coat, which can be sable, white, cream or orange fawn. It is therefore impossible to find a black golden retriever.

Finally, another physical difference between the two breeds: the Labrador has a short hair and the Golden has a long, slightly wavy hair.

Adopting an animal commits you, it is a decision that you will have to think carefully about. Do not hesitate to contact your veterinarian or the shelter closest to you before starting. They will be able to give you their advice on the breed of dog that will suit you best.


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