Mixed Breeds or Designer Dogs have become the most talked-about pets these days. It’s not that purebreds are not good but then if you can get two of the famous purebreds combined in one you could not be asking for more.
When you choose a mixed breed dog, always remember your puppy is inheriting its genes from both its parents. There is no way you could know how big your dog could become, what he will look like, whether he could fit into your family and lifestyle. Everything matters on how your luck is!
What are the Dynamics of Mixed Breeds
Designer dogs or mixed breeds are always in popular demand. Labrador dogs Generally, these mix breeds tend to become the most favored pets. The most difficult part is that it is never possible to predict how the characters would emerge in mixed breeds. Honestly, no responsible breeder will guarantee what the personality of a mixed breed could be.
It is impossible to pre-determine how a combination of two unique genes could merge into an individual puppy. The best we can do is to check out each breed and realize that a crossbreed could be a single amalgamation of several possibilities.
The best could come of both the breeds or the worst or sometimes it could be a wonderful mashup of both!
An Overview of the Labrador Dog
Labradors are of a mediocre size with a very impressive energy level. They are friendly and as smart as a whip originating from Newfoundland, Canada. There they were mainly used by fishermen and were famous for their hard-working nature.
They love their owners and families a lot and make very good pets for children. A Labrador will never behave as a ferocious dog because it just goes against their nature.
The coats of Labradors are very beautiful and are in yellow, black, or chocolate color. Their fur is thick and short and is an all-weather coat.
Terrier Dog Overview
There are many breeds in the Terrier family. They include Staffordshire Terrier, Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Fox Terrier, etc. Most of the Terrier breeds originated from Ireland and Great Britain. A recent study has shown that those from the hunting group originated in 19th century Europe. Today the terriers are grouped according to their function like hunting, size, etc.
The DNA of the Terriers is filled with hunting and killing skills. They can never be tempted by any real or perceived threat. Their boldness and fearlessness would always get the better of them.
Terrier dogs are very quick learners. They get along well with children if they are given proper and supportive training. These dogs are very loyal and it is great fun to exercise or have fun with them.
An overview of the Labrador Terrier Mixed Breed
The Labrador Terrier Mix has the combined best traits of both its parents. The combination of two popular breeds has given way to one of the finest designer dogs. This crossbreed is relatively a new breed, as a result, there is nothing accurate to tell about this breed. However, this dog’s parents are a different matter. Although the Labrador Terriers are designer dogs, it is unfortunate that they finally end up in shelter homes.
As not much information is available about this breed it is better to consult any shelter home or breeder if anyone is considering adopting this crossbreed.
The appearance of Labrador Terrier Dog
The Labrador Terrier dogs are generally medium in size. As is in the case of most of the mixed breeds it is very difficult to exactly specify their size. Male dogs weigh between 27 to 50 pounds while females would weigh between 20 to 45 pounds. Their height from the front paw to their shoulder while standing on all fours could be between thirteen to seventeen inches. The females might be visibly smaller than the males standing between thirteen to fifteen inches.
The coat of the Labrador Terrier will be dense, and straight. Their hair is of medium length. Both the parents have opposite coat shedding characteristics. So, it is difficult to predict which shedding trait the Labrador Terrier dog will inherit. The colors of the coat will be generally black, brown, white, or a combination of these colors. Their furs are bi-colored or solid.
Labrador Terrier dogs have a short and sturdy body but in proportion with their body. They have very expressive brown eyes. Their ever-smiling face is a quite well-known character. When they raise their eyebrows they can convey a quizzical look.
The nose of the Labrador Terrier dog is normally black. The ears can be floppy like that of the Labrador or small and erect with a floppy tip like that of the Terrier. Their legs are straight and strong with rounded paws. The tails of this crossbreed are medium-sized and are held low away from the body.
Food Habits of Labrador Terrier Dogs
The food consumption of this mixed breed depends on a lot of factors like age, health, etc. Other than food always ensure that their bowl of water is kept full so that they are always hydrated. It is necessary to monitor their diet regularly as this breed is prone to getting obese just like the parent. Ensure that they consume only the right amount of food that is required for their active lifestyle.
We love our pets to be healthy and happy always. That is why we should avoid giving them unwanted dry food. Give them the best branded dry food, like Wellness Core Dry Food or Blue Wilderness Dry Food. If your pet is a puppy give him the best puppy food available. But if he is a grandpa then go for the best senior dry food which could keep their bones brittle.
Whatever you experiment with his food always consult your vet before you change his diet.
Exercise Requirements for Labrador Terrier Mix
Just like their parents, the Labrador Terrier Mix is also the happiest if he is given exercises regularly. A daily walk combined with some games at home will keep him active and joyful. Being an eagerness bound dog he will even wait for you at the door when it is time to go for his daily walks.
If you are staying in an apartment make him get accustomed to the space available and train him according to that. This breed favors a moderate climate and would find it difficult to thrive in extreme climates.
Labrador Terrier Mix breed has inherited the trait of swimming from its Labrador parent. He loves to have a splash in the water especially in summers. His favorite games are fetching a ball, tug-of-war, playing hide and seek, etc. This breed is a family dog, so he will just love outings with the family.
Training your Labrador Terrier Mix
The Labrador Terrier Mix being a hybrid dog will be naturally an intelligent and playful dog. So it would not be difficult to train him. They have a nature-filled with eagerness to learn which will make them active during training.
Like all dogs, they should also be trained at an early age because they will otherwise tend to become stubborn as they grow older. If left alone they tend to become bored and destructive.
Although they will listen attentively to all your commands sometimes they will be a time when they will just not obey. He loves to please people so he will respond well to your training as long as he gets all the attention.
Training for this breed should always be only with positive reinforcements. Do not pamper him with overdoses of rewards or treats as this may lead to obesity. Since this is an intelligent breed that loves physical challenges, regular exercises will only ease the training.
Socialization should be taught at an early age. Take him to parks, beaches, or doggy care and teach him how to mingle with other people or dogs.
Grooming of Labrador Terrier Dog
The Labrador Terrier Mix is easy to maintain with minimal requirements for the owner. A quick brush, with a firm, bristled brush, once a week is all that is needed. If you need their coat to be a little shinier then a rub down with a soft damp cloth is all that is needed.
This breed loves attention so grooming every week should be done just as a ritual for them. Ritual grooming could be as simple as checking their nails, checking their ears, or just simply grooming down their coat. Wiping their ears gently with a soft damp cloth will remove any dirt or debris.
It is better to get them used to brush their teeth from an early age. Let them be trained so and always reward them for doing this good behavior. This practice will only ensure that they do not develop any bad habits later when they mature.
How does the Labrador Terrier get along with the family?
Every pet gets along with the family on how we train him. He should be taught early on how to accept the general rules of the house.
Being highly active, they have a huge need for exercise. He is always eager to please his owner and family and hence would always try to grab your attention. They have a clingy nature to their family and hence he would get bored when left alone. They have a reputation to chew on anything especially those which you just don’t want him to chew on.
Never buy this crossbreed just for lap-sitting. He is a high wired dog and cannot just be kept idle for long. Also, he stands a heavy risk of getting obese quickly so keeping him active is the best option.
Children and Labrador Terrier Mix
The Labrador Terrier Mix just loves children. Energetic and tolerant they make the ideal playmate for children. Saying that it does not mean that you can leave your children without any supervision with your dog. If no adults are free to be around when your child is playing with your pet then it is better to keep him kenneled.
Teach your child early not to pull on the dog’s ears or tail. For them, it is fun to pull at his ears or tail but for the dog, it will not be easy. Children should be taught not to approach a dog while they are sleeping or eating or try to take away the dog’s food.
Labrador Terriers should be taught early on how to mingle with other dogs or pets. If he has been trained on how to interact with other animals then he will behave friendly with them.
Health problems faced by Labrador Terrier Mix
All dogs have the potential to inherit genetic health issues but some have the risk of facing these problems more. For crossbreeds, it is very important to always check the health of the parents.
A reputable breeder will always maintain a proper health record of all his breeds. So if you have adopted your pet from the start then you should not be facing any problems. Also, you should take your dog to the vet immediately after you have adopted him to know what exactly his health status is like.
A Labrador Terrier mix dog has a life span of up to ten to fifteen years. They should undergo regular checkups to monitor their health condition. Some of the health problems they could face are :
- Hip Dysplasia – This is an inherited disease where the bones do not fit into the joints or form at different proportions. This may lead to arthritis.
- Intervertebral Disc Disease – This disease affects the spinal cord and sometimes could make your pet paralytic
- Patellar Luxation – In this disease, the dog’s kneecap gets dislocated and will cause knee joint abnormalities
- Ear infections – Here the inner ear or middle ear gets inflammations causing a bacterial infection.
It is always better to stop your pet from getting any disease. So always take him for regular checkups and try to maintain a health record. Take the help of your vet and ask them for suggestions to avoid your pet from facing any health issues.
Certain Pros and Cons of getting a Labrador Terrier Mix
In contrary to popular belief the Labrador Terrier mix is not such a difficult dog to adopt. If proper training is given from an early age everything would work fine. But just like all dog breeds they also have their pros and cons. Here are some of them
Pros of getting a Labrador Terrier Mix
- Intelligent and easy to train – Just like their parents they are always eager to learn and so it is easy to train them. This combined with their intelligence makes him an excellent pet.
- Social skills – They are extremely friendly and can get along well with children, people, or other pets. Early socialization would make them the favorite among all.
- Moderate maintenance requirement – Even though they have high exercise requirements their maintenance is moderate or sometimes even low. This is because they shed very less. Regularly scheduled brushing will prevent their coat from getting untangled.
Cons of getting a Labrador Terrier Mix
- High exercise requirements – As both, the parents are highly active this crossbreed requires a lot of exercises. If they do not get the required exercise then they have the chance to develop any dog diseases.
- Separation anxiety – This dog loves to be in the company of its family and is a very affectionate dog. If they are left alone they become bored and tend to develop destructive behaviors.
- Risk of obesity – Even though this breed is highly active yet at the same time they just love their food. Because of this, they tend to become obese quickly. So regular and proper exercise is required to prevent them from obesity as otherwise, this will lead to other health problems.
Some of the popular Labrador Terrier Mixes
There are many possible cross breed combinations in the Labrador Terrier Mix. Some of the most fascinating ones are :
- Rat Terrier Lab Mix – He is a handsome fellow, small to medium in size. His lean body is covered with a short dual-colored coat. The coat color black, tan, apricot or red or sometimes in a combination with white. This breed comes in a miniature size and their height could be between ten to eighteen inches. Their typical weight could be ten to twenty-five pounds. The life expectancy of this dog varies between ten to twelve years on average. This mix makes a good companion and is always an adventure game. His energy level is very high and always loves to be in motion. You just cannot see him as a couch potato or lazing around. Early socialization and training would make him a good companion for children. But he should not be left along with other dogs.
- Bull Terrier Lab Mix – This crossbreed is a lively dog that must be kept busy always to prevent him from getting bored. If not he will develop destructive traits. They grow to about twenty-one to twenty-two inches tall and weigh about fifty to seventy pounds. This breed has a short coat and has a plethora of colors. They are considered to be low maintenance dogs. The Bull Terrier Lab mix is loyal dogs. But do not give them any canine siblings as they show their bratty behavior then. Therefore he should be trained early and well. With positive behavioral training, he could be taught well-polished manners.
- American Staffordshire Terrier Lab Mix – This crossbreed is also known as Labrastaff. The American Labrastaffies are similar to the Pitbull Terrier. He will stand at seventeen to nineteen inches tall and live twelve to fifteen years. Their coat is short and soft and easy to maintain. Labrastaff is a sturdy medium-sized dog who is intelligent and self-assured. His agility and adaptability to any situation make him a good search dog. This breed has a sparkling personality but those cross-bred with the Pitbull will have temperament issues. He can be kept happy and friendly with just moderate exercises. His potential guarding instincts are very high so early socialization, especially with children, is required.
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier Lab Mix – This medium-sized dog is solid, heavy, and strong like a brick. He grows to fourteen to sixteen inches tall and weighs about 24 to 38 pounds. His life expectancy is twelve to fourteen years. They have a short coat which comes in a rainbow of fourteen colors. He has a considerable high energy level and hence would require a lot of exercises to burn up his energy. Positive training is the only way for him as he is stubborn by nature. Harsh methods and a very strict regime will not work with him.
- Fox Terrier Lab Mix – In this there are two Terrier types one is the Smooth Fox Terrier Lab and the other is the Wiry Fox Terrier Lab mix. The Smooth Fox crossbreed will be medium-sized. They stand at 15 inches tall with a wedge-shaped head. The life expectancy of this breed is twelve to fifteen years. Their fur is smooth and thick with mainly white, black, or tan markings on the coat. This breed is a relatively healthy dog. The Wire Fox crossbreed has a wiry coat with white and brown colors about the ear and face. They stand at fifteen inches tall and weigh about 16 to 18 pounds with a life span of 12 to 15 years. This dog is attention seekers and will do anything to catch your attention. He is always alert and ever ready to jump. They have the crazy habit of running behind any moving objects be it even a toy.
- Border Terrier Lab Mix – This crossbreed is a cheerful agile guy standing at 15 inches tall. He weighs 11 to 16 pounds. They live on average for 12 to 15 years. They have a typical short terrier coat. The coat is wiry and not smooth. It comes in dual colors blue-tan and grizzle-tan. This cute little dog has a head shaped just like an otter’s head. He will do just fine with children but you should be careful if he is left with other dogs.
A Labrador pet is an evergreen choice for every dog lover. But the cost of owning a pedigree can sometimes be out of reach for a few of them. On the other hand, a Labrador mix can be something closer to owning the original pedigree but at a lesser cost! The crossbreed will be as much fun as the Labrador itself. We also have a choice to make by getting a mix that would not grow as big as a Labrador but at the same time suitable for our house.
The general rule is that crossbreeds will live healthier and longer than pure breeds. If we choose the right Labrador mix then we could get a breed that inherits the best traits of the Lab. Additionally, we could also get a dog with the additional inheritances received from the other parent as well.
While trying to find a new pet the first step you should do is to find reputable breeders. They generally have the best breeds with them and would never take a risk on their welfare. Hence you can trust that they would never overbreed the parent breeds. Also, check that they have the proper documents including vaccine schedules and health records. Meet the breeder personally so that you can ask them all about the needs of your puppy. They could also guide you on how to raise your puppy.
Going to a breeder and meeting the puppy will also help you decide if you ready to raise a pet. Otherwise, the next thing to do is to check out with the local shelters and rescue homes where sometimes you could be lucky to find that perfect pet. The only point to remember while adopting a pet from the shelter or rescue home is that please ensure that their health record is perfect and they have been temperament tested too.
If possible it would be worth it if the shelter home would allow you to take the dog on a trial basis for a week or so. This would give you time to decide if he would fit into your home and vice versa too. If you both don’t get along well then you have the choice to return him so that he can find a better home.
Last but not least is that before you go to a breeder or shelter home it is advisable to research and find out about the breed you are planning to adopt. This will help you in clearing whatever questions you have in your mind about raising a pet. But whatever said and done the Labrador Terrier Mixed dog is always fun to be with. So enjoy!!