Hello all. Ive posted here before about us getting a dog when circumstances were right , well ( drumroll) now they are and we have been offered the possible chance of a 3/4 lab 1/4 springer puppy ( mum newly expecting). Neither myself or dh have any breed experience (my family had collies and lurchers, dh brought up on an arable farm so experience of terriors) . The huge positive is that the mum is owned by dd16's best friend and we know she has a lovely temperament. Any advice on labs/ springers or gundogs in general would be greatly appreciated.
Gundogs in general are my ideal dogs . It's v difficult to predict what a mix is going to end up like - could be very lab-like, could be much more spaniel-ish and may well vary dramatically even within a litter.
We know a lovely springer/lab cross - she looks just like a short-haired springer and acts like one too but all her siblings looked just like small chocolate labs. The one we know is very bouncy - much more springy (!) than any lab I've ever known and can clear a stairgate in one contemptuous bounce. She's very lively, good with children and other animals (terrified of cats), a bit neurotic and pulls like a train on the lead. Recall is good, although she does range quite widely after scents in the undergrowth. She is ball-obsessed. She's not had much more than basic training but is generally pretty well-behaved
You need to make sure that both parents have had all relevant health checks for their respective breed. The cross I know was bred by hobby breeders who frankly didn't have a clue and it's possible there are all kinds of problems lurking
I have a lab and a lab retriever cross. The lab is 9 months and bonkers. Loves to flush out deer and rabbits on walks. Has a lovely temperament though and can be a sweet girl. My retriever cross is ball obsessed. He is the loveliest most gentle boy. I'm a huge fan of gundogs. They make great pets but need lots of training.
The two great loves of my life have been springer crosses (one with a Dalamatian, one with a Sheltie...), they're both stunningly beautiful (strangers stop us on Walkies to ask about them), hilarious personalities, utterly enamoured/obsessed with us, very vocal, ball focussed, energetic, love sniffing and searching, cuddly. I dunno about the Labrador part, it depends what the puppies inherit, they could look like springers but have the personalities of Labradors, or vice versa or a mixture of both. Personally, for no reason, I don't like Labradors, their looks, bins on legs or general air of dopeyness <runs and hides> but they're not utter fuckers like some breeds generally are, and have a reputation for being steady, calm-ish dogs. I'd be asking the usual questions to the breeder, like why they chose to breed their pet, evidence of the health checks when the puppies are born, like hip scores etc, is the owner a backyard breeder?