Once you get a Labrador retriever, you’re bound to be responsible and to care for them properly. It’s a lot like having a child. You have to ensure they’re safe, healthy, properly trained, and well-loved.
Are Labrador puppies hard work? How hard is it really to care for Labrador puppies?
Are Labrador Puppies Hard Work?
Deciding on getting a Labrador puppy to raise as a home companion? You’re not alone. In fact, Labrador retrievers are dubbed as America’s dog.
But before you decide on getting a Lab or any puppy, you have to know your responsibility. It’s not enough to feed them and give them shelter. You have to do more than just giving them their necessities.
With that said, yes, it’s definitely hard work to have a Labrador pup. But it’s not just this breed. Any puppy is hard work.
As stated above, it’s like having a child that you have to check every now and then. You won’t be able to sleep well at night as puppies tend to cry. It happens especially if they’re alone or not with their littermates or mother.
You also can’t leave them alone for a long period. Puppies have a hard time tending to themselves, especially at a young age. They’ll need you to feed them and to monitor their playtime.
If they aren’t potty trained yet, you have to bring them outside at least every two hours. Or else, your home will be filled with pee and poo. Plus, you should only let them out for a few minutes as pups get sick easily.
Yet, unlike your own children, your dog is considered an adult by their first birthday. Once they mature mentally, your work is less hectic than before.
But Why Get Puppies?
If having a pup is hard, why not get an adult dog?
Many people might ask this especially when they aren’t fans of dogs or pets in general. But getting an adult dog is more difficult than having a pup. For one, they will have a harder time getting familiar with you and their new home.
You can’t be sure if they’ve been trained properly as well. Puppies are easier to train as they learn quicker. Adult dogs tend to be more stubborn.
Are You Ready for a Labrador Puppy?
Before getting a Labrador puppy, ask yourself these questions:
- Do you have enough space for a medium-sized dog?
- Can you keep up with the Lab’s active lifestyle?
- Do you have enough time to monitor them?
- Do you have money for all their needs?
First off, having a big space is preferable. But Labs are also known to thrive well in apartments. Just be sure it’s spacious enough for them and for you.
Secondly, Labrador retrievers have high energy. They’re originally bred to help hunters and retrieve game. That’s why they will need brisk walks, runs, and daily exercise.
If you can’t keep up with their active lifestyle, perhaps a Labrador retriever isn’t for you. Not being able to give them proper exercise can lead to problematic behavior. They tend to become too hyper and even destructive.
Third, pups have to be monitored. You can’t leave them alone when they’re still young. You have to ensure they’re safe and they’re not doing something harmful.
Lastly, it’s not cheap to have a Labrador retriever or any dog. Besides their monthly food consumption, you also have to bring them to the vet. On average, you have to spend at least $1000 a year for your dog.
How to Properly Care for a Pup
Still interested in getting a Labrador retriever pup? If you are, you have to be armed with knowledge. You need to be ready with their needs and wants.
Here are two things to get you started:
Potty Train Your Dog
If you bought a Labrador pup, they’re likely around three months old. They should be weaned first before they can be separated from their mother. At three months, it’s possible to start their potty training.
In fact, it should be done as soon as you can.
According to AKC, crate training ranks the most used potty training tool. That’s because your dog loves a clean space as much as you do. If they need to go out, they’d whine and scratch to get your attention.
You can also bring them out once in a while to do their business. The repetition will help them know they should go outside if they need to pee or poo.
Buy a Crate
Crate training is important and can help with house-training your dog. It can even help with separation anxiety. But you have to ensure that the crate caters them well.
You might need to buy separate crates from when they are pups until they are adults.
Labrador retriever puppies are adorable and cute, but definitely hard work. Still, all the hard work is worth it as they will reward you with their adoration and love.