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Old 04-14-2011, 09:47 PM   #1
natew
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Default Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

A friend of mine is getting a chocolate lab pup in a few weeks. Upon talking to other people telling them about their new pup, several people have commented that chocolate labs aren't very smart or are dumb dogs. I have been around dogs and have had dogs my whole life and this is the first time I have EVER heard this. Any truth to this??? Now he is worried about getting a DUMB dog. He doesn't hunt, it is just a family dog.

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Old 04-14-2011, 10:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

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A friend of mine is getting a chocolate lab pup in a few weeks. Upon talking to other people telling them about their new pup, several people have commented that chocolate labs aren't very smart or are dumb dogs. I have been around dogs and have had dogs my whole life and this is the first time I have EVER heard this. Any truth to this??? Now he is worried about getting a DUMB dog. He doesn't hunt, it is just a family dog.

Thanks

The two chocolates I've had have been remarkably dumb dogs. The black and yellow labs I had were phenominaly good dogs for hunting or as family dogs.


One choc would tip over his water pail, a big galvanized tub. He'd lay on the ground with his head in the bucket and bark for up to an hour. Then he'd do some other stuff with the bucket that I really didn't think possible.

The other would ransack the house about twice a year. Found him one day where he'd managed to wind himself up so tightly in the bedsheets that he couldn't get out. He also defeathered a few mounted ducks.

The black dogs were the best, the yellow dog was a good one too. Personally I'd never own another chocolate lab although that's kinda like stereotyping people. I guess. Except their dogs so I think it's okay.

aw
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:03 PM   #3
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I have owned and been around labs my entire life. Very smart and eager to please. That being said I know have a border collie who is about 2 years old and its by far the smartest dog I have ever been around. IMO the "smartness" of a dog depends alot on the owner. Do you excersize your dog regularly? Work with them on a daily basis? In my experience dogs learn alot through positive reinforcement and consistant training
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

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Originally Posted by natew View Post
A friend of mine is getting a chocolate lab pup in a few weeks. Upon talking to other people telling them about their new pup, several people have commented that chocolate labs aren't very smart or are dumb dogs. I have been around dogs and have had dogs my whole life and this is the first time I have EVER heard this. Any truth to this??? Now he is worried about getting a DUMB dog. He doesn't hunt, it is just a family dog.

Thanks
It completely depends on the dog. The breed is middle of the road as far as intelligence is concerned. I've known very smart labs, and labs that are dumber than a bag of rocks.
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Old 04-14-2011, 10:55 PM   #5
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

My chocolate Lab is a sweetheart and very intelligent. She loves her cat too, but the cat's lacking a bit in the brains department.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ea5MoFR5Nj4
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:05 PM   #6
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

[QUOTE=Wingdam;3626811]My chocolate Lab is a sweetheart and very intelligent. She loves her cat too, but the cat's lacking a bit in the brains department.

Not to hijack the thread, but my wifes cat is dumber than your cat.
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Old 04-14-2011, 11:47 PM   #7
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Are you kidding me?!?!? This is just a myth...The THEORY is that there was inbreeding involved to creat the chocolate color and dumbed the breed. The theory that chocoalte labs are not as smart as black and yellow labs is false. All breeds have there share of not so smart dogs, a lot due to inbreeding but you can't say that chocolate labs are an inferior breed. I have owned chocolate labs all my life and will continue to own them as long as I need a bird dog and family dog. When picking out a puppy you need to research the family tree and find out the backgrounds of the parents, this is true for all breeds. I also agree the 'behavioral smartness' of a dog depends on its owner and the amount of time someone spends with the dog in training. If a dog becomes bored due to lack of interaction it will get into mischief which some people will deem as dumb. I have found the smarter the dog the more trouble they seem to get in, if the proper interactions and excercise is not administered. I am getting off the OP now so I hope this helps. Tell your friend congrats on the new family member and to enjoy.
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Old 04-15-2011, 12:31 AM   #8
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

It's a myth, no color of lab is "Dumber" than any other

I am on my second "Dumb" chocolate lab. They both anxiously waited for me at the gate as I packed my decoys into the truck in the wee hours of the morning......"Dumb?";
They both sat many hours next to me in the cold wet blind anxiously waiting for that first morning flight...."Dumb?"
They both quivered in anticiapation as I worked a flock of mallards within shooting range...."Dumb?"
Not once did either one hestitate to plunge into the freezing cold water or through ice to retreive the days reward...."Dumb?"
As age started setting in on my first one, he could hardly move after a days hunt. I remember once after a days hunt (in his later years), he could barely get up to eat, so the next morning I checked on him....same thing, so I says O.K. Bud, guess you'll have to sit this one out. But as soon as he heard the noise of decoys banging around from inside the shop, guess who came running around the corner with the pert of a 3 year old pup??!!!... "Dumb?"
If this makes a Chocolate Lab "Dumb", then in my mind & heart "Dumb" is O.K. with me!!!!!
Most ALL Labs are here to please, regardless of their color.
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Old 04-15-2011, 01:12 AM   #9
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

My yellow lab (more white than yellow) plays dumb, but when food is around he turns into a freaking genius. Like the time he stood up on his back legs and pulled 3 bird feed suet cakes off the top shelf in my garage (that I thought was high enough off of the ground), but then he probably didn't think he was too smart after he pooped bird seed for three straight days.

He's a great dog. Just should of been born as a pig instead. Oh and one other thing beware of the shedding issue, yellow labs are probably the most likely to shed when compared to the black and chocs. I ware my dogs hair everywhere I go. Keeps me warm.

Here's a pic of the hairy beast!
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Old 04-15-2011, 01:50 AM   #10
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

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My yellow lab (more white than yellow) plays dumb, but when food is around he turns into a freaking genius. Like the time he stood up on his back legs and pulled 3 bird feed suet cakes off the top shelf in my garage (that I thought was high enough off of the ground), but then he probably didn't think he was too smart after he pooped bird seed for three straight days.

He's a great dog. Just should of been born as a pig instead. Oh and one other thing beware of the shedding issue, yellow labs are probably the most likely to shed when compared to the black and chocs. I ware my dogs hair everywhere I go. Keeps me warm.

Here's a pic of the hairy beast!
Good looking dog. I too take a little bit of my yellow (white) with me everywhere i go..
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:05 AM   #11
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Field bred labs are bred for their hunting abilities. The poor hunters are not used in the breeding program. Same with field trial dogs.

Many pet labs are bred if they have a pulse and are generally healthy. A good breeder will breed for confirmation to the standard. This has no bearing on a dogs ability to use it's nose or it's retrieve instincts.

Chocolate labs are bred because they're brown. There is a local, fairly well respected kennel breeding chocolate duck dogs. I believe they were called Merganser Labs. Maybe someone here knows one of these dogs and can give some feedback?

That being said, My yellow field lab is a blast, but she's VERY high strung and relentless about retrieving to the point of needing an intervention...
I prefer this type of dog and know she's not going to be the calm super mellow dog some others may want.

Your friend sounds like he may be happier with a non field trial dog. And to be honest, a field lab will be miserable without being able to do it's job (hunt, retrieve) etc and will most likely channel that energy in a negative way instead. Via nobody's happy.

These are just my opinions based on 39 years of dog ownership, most of which have been labs.
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Old 04-15-2011, 05:55 AM   #12
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Slayer,

You're right about the Border Collie's being smart. I was against getting one, but after my wife surprised me by spending $500.00 on one, I was pretty much stuck.

That dog is so smart, it actually taught my wife to play fetch!!! He will drop that ball where he wants you to pick it up and you need to go get it.

I informed my wife that the dog is actually supposed to bring the ball back to you and not the other way around.
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:20 AM   #13
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I had one Veterinarian in the Portland area who was a very successful professional, and he told me that he felt that chocalates were the "smartest" of the lab group! The best labs I have ever had were chocalates and blacks.
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:29 AM   #14
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

chocs era not a breed they are a color of lab.....they are as smart as a black or a yellow...all dogs have their own personality.and posibly only as smart as the owner..lol..
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:40 AM   #15
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

The trainer that I purchased my Black dogs from were of the opinion that to get a certain color, other than black, you lose something in the line: desire, brains, drive etc. They absolutely would not breed any color except black and dogs were bred specifically for hunting and trials. For the year that I spent there, they did have one yellow that a customer brought in for training, not bred at their kennel, but they would not train chocolates at their facilites for the same reason that started this post.
I have never personally spent time around a chocolate lab so I am only going off of a respected breeder/trainers 40 years of insight.
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Old 04-15-2011, 07:46 AM   #16
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I've only had two labs, one yellow and my current, a chocolate. The yellow was bigger, smarter and could see better.

The chocolate is 95 lbs., has an otter coat, and is a better swimmer.

Both are/were very mellow. I can't stand a hyperactive dog, and believed most chocolates were hyper until I owned Gauge. Both have been extremely loyal and eager to please. Both are great fishing and hunting dogs.

My next lab will be the next flavor, black. C.W.


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Old 04-15-2011, 08:20 AM   #17
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

My Chocolate Lab is 12 1/2 years old and although his heart says LET'S GO, his body won't let him. Really sad to watch. I remember taking him to my Vet when I first got him. One of the first things my Vet did was to hold his head up and look for the mole under his mouth that he told me all labs have, and then to count the number of hairs growing out of that mole: my Chocolate had/has 3... Then my Vet proceeded to tell me the story of a famous breeder years ago that believed that the more hairs, the smarter the Lab, evidentally they can have as many as 4 hairs.... Have no idea whether there's any truth to the tale my Vet told me, but my Chocolate is pretty smart, very loyal and my best friend.
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Old 04-15-2011, 08:42 AM   #18
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

No expert here but the neighbor has a choc lab,,,dumber than dumb and has some weird behavior but I attribute that to his owner...same characteristics. He's supposed to be purebred but his head sure looks alot like he has some pit in him. Owner has very little control over him..makes me nervous.
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Old 04-15-2011, 08:42 AM   #19
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My chocolate Daizzy is a freak of nature. It took one weak to train her to fetch, heel,come,sit,stay. She's so smart that she watched a friends black lab retraced a duck and has Ben hooked ever send. My wifes yellow lab hates water won't sit, stay or fetch and gets into everything she shouldn't and has Ben labels the money pit at the vets but my wife likes her.
O

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Old 04-15-2011, 09:04 AM   #20
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I had a black lab for 14 yrs. She was a loyal dog & aimed to please. I was working away from home alot & didn't have the time to put into her as I do my Chocolate lab that is 8 yrs old now. So I agree that a dog is as smart as the time & training you put into them. Sherman knows every toy in his toy box by name & will bring you which ever one you tell him to. When watching tv all I have to say is Sherman my feet are cold & he will go and get me a pair of socks that I keep on the nite stand. Smart or well trained you decide.
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:05 AM   #21
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I wouldn't say they are dumb by any means. It all depends on the bloodlines. I've seen 8 week old chocolate pups that could fetch naturally better then most.
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:14 AM   #22
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My friend only runs chocolates for field trials and they are amazing hunters. Probably the best duck/upland flushing dogs I have ever hunted behind ever and this includes black labs where I hunted all over the eastern shore of Maryland for ducks and geese. You may have heard of the line: Merganser's Classic Rip n Tear. Rip was the best waterfowl and upland bird dog I have ever hunted behind and likely will ever hunt behind. That line has a ton of Master Hunter awards behind them and almost all are chocolates.I think it truly depends on the line of the dog. I've owned black labs and yellows that were dumb as rocks too. You still love them though.
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:18 AM   #23
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Dogs are like people in most cases, some smarter than others regardless of color or breed. I have owned labs since the early '60's. I've seen dumb and smart ones in all colors as I have people. Parent stock greatly helps but I once had two brothers from the same litter, one was a complete basket case and the other a champion. From that experience, I learned that a shy dog can become a biter at least in that one's case so he went to doggie heaven real quick. I agree field-bred labs seem to excel in hunting ability as a geneal rule but exceptions always arise. Now Border Collies, I have one now, are so intelligent they seem to train people as mentioned above and far exceed any dog i have been around for intelligence but they are also very sensitive to criticism so one needs to be firm but reasonable with them. One thing..they need a job or else they will find a job which may not please the owner. We have to regularly take the BC outside to play ball at least 3 times or more a day to channel off some of his energy (as do we do with Labs but not so intensely). He knows the name of several toys and can retrieve the one asked for from his toy box. If I say "get the cow" really quiet-like, he is out the door checking to see if the neighbors cows are back in our yard for him to roust out. Now to teach him to retrieve Springers...
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:20 AM   #24
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I'm sure it's a myth, but the dumbest labs I've known have all been Chocolate. Probably just a coincidence.
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:46 AM   #25
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I'm sure it's a myth, but the dumbest labs I've known have all been Chocolate. Probably just a coincidence.
chocolates - kind,spazz,goofy, willing , stamina, lover, gooser
blacks- meaner aggressive, hyper, smart, fast, jumper, upland
yellow- mellow, lazy, powerfull, loyal, playfull,digger, water fowl

you can swich around the colors to fit the specific dog.
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:58 AM   #26
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Old school thinking. Many of these thoughts were originated by old school field trialers where blacks were thought to be the only way to go. When yellows were introduced into field trials they encountered the same barriers that chocolates today are seeing. The truth to the matter is that in the genetics of the colors, chocolate being a double recessive gene, needs to be bred carefully with a strong black genetic background to avoid the surfacing of genetic problem in labs. I tell my clients that your considerations in priority should be #1 strong genetics (hips/elbow, eyes, CNM and EIC), #2 performance backgrounds if hunting/competition is a goal, and if all things being equal, I would then pick my preference for color. Funny thing is that most will undoubtedly choose color as their first criteria. Human nature I guess. HT
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Old 04-15-2011, 10:19 AM   #27
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My Chocolate lab Mac is the best dog I have ever had. He could be considered dumb because all he wants to do is please you. They are people dogs. When you train him you do it by touching his heart, not punishment. I was told that by a dog trainer at the sportsman show. What great advise. My dog Mac is my best friend. They are also a natural on a fishing boat. He took to my sled the first time.
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Old 04-15-2011, 10:51 AM   #28
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

If it were true, I wish my neighbor's Black Lab was a Chocolate Lab.
They should have name her "Houdini"! She can escape their yard in a split second.

If your friend is wanting a family dog, does it really matter? As long as they spend time with basic training, I'm sure the dog will be fine.
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Old 04-15-2011, 11:31 AM   #29
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It completely depends on the dog. The breed is middle of the road as far as intelligence is concerned. I've known very smart labs, and labs that are dumber than a bag of rocks.
I showed this thread to my wife who is a lab breeder and I asked her to write up a response, so here it is....


Do you not know what the breed standard according to the AKC reads:

True Labrador Retriever temperament is as much a hallmark of the breed as the "otter" tail. The ideal disposition is one of a kindly, outgoing, tractable nature; eager to please and non-aggressive towards man or animal. The Labrador has much that appeals to people; his gentle ways, intelligence and adaptability make him an ideal dog.

I would suggest that all of you look up the standard of a Labrador: http://www.akc.org/breeds/labrador_retriever/

What most of you don’t understand is that it is just coat color, just genetics. Black, Yellow or Chocolate they are all the same. The common misconception is that if you buy a dog from someone that it automatically makes it a quality dog. What you don’t realize is that ethical breeders breed for not only conformation and soundness of body, but for TEMPERMENT!! Saying that a chocolate is any less intelligent that a black or yellow is just plain idiotic. What you need to realize is this, there are many people out there who I refer to as back yard breeders or people who even have puppy mills. These people have a common goal, the almighty dollar! They have no care or concern as to what type of dogs they are breeding, these are the idiots that breed a Dominant Yellow to a Dominant Chocolate and wonder why all the puppies turned out black! There are so many important things that go into properly breeding a litter, I would suggest that for those of you that have had chocolates in the past with temperament issues.. take a look at where you got the dog. Was it a reputable breeder, did you make sure that the parents had all their health clearances, did you visit their facilities or did you meet them in a parking lot? Also, all animals must be properly socialized, they must have training. Most of the time the issue is not the dog, it is the person.

But to reiterate my point, Black, Yellow or Chocolate.. it is just the color of their coat! I have a Black Boy who carries Chocolate which makes him a (Bc)… just because he carries the chocolate gene does not make him any less intelligent that my boy who is Black carrying yellow or (By) boy. Oh and on a side note, we have a 12 year old Chocolate Boy who was a phenomenal hunter in his day, he has obedience titles, is beautiful to look at to boot!

If you are going to get a puppy, do your homework!! If you get a dog that was not properly bred, you basically are tossing the dice and hoping for a good outcome!
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Old 04-15-2011, 11:35 AM   #30
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Abby is our family's first choc lab. We (our family) has had many, many yellow and black labs, probably close to 15.

Abby is by far the smartest! she is a crafty determined, relentless hunter! An incredible pet, and so very easy with the kids/family.

She was given to my dad by a breeder/freind from Calif how specializes in labs and work dogs (scent)
she came from an incredible family line.

she's the best lab we have ever owned bottom line.

many of you have seen me/dad on the water down her on the SC and know she stands on that bow from daylight to dark! and she'll be happy to do it everyday!
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Old 04-15-2011, 11:49 AM   #31
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Old school thinking. Many of these thoughts were originated by old school field trialers where blacks were thought to be the only way to go. When yellows were introduced into field trials they encountered the same barriers that chocolates today are seeing. The truth to the matter is that in the genetics of the colors, chocolate being a double recessive gene, needs to be bred carefully with a strong black genetic background to avoid the surfacing of genetic problem in labs. I tell my clients that your considerations in priority should be #1 strong genetics (hips/elbow, eyes, CNM and EIC), #2 performance backgrounds if hunting/competition is a goal, and if all things being equal, I would then pick my preference for color. Funny thing is that most will undoubtedly choose color as their first criteria. Human nature I guess. HT

There ya go.With that said people will tend to choose the color.Both can be accoplished by doing research.You can get the best of both worlds.

Though I have worked with a couple of choc labs.With high expectations from the owner. I after time noticed a lack of maturity.The dogs had plenty of drive.Watching the owners work them or even letting the dogs go ya yeh they appeared to be dumb to what a human expects.But were they dumb.NO.They looked for food,slept,when let out ran about,amused them selves, barked if someone came a knocking.These are some basic survival skills.The simularity of both dogs was this, very unstable,did not adhear to basic commands.They may have been expected and said but the dogs were not trained to do this each and everytime.One guy admitted his wife took care of the dog for the most part.But he wanted the lab to hunt.Hence why he and I hooked up.
But as humans most will say their dog is lacking(dumb).When in fact it is a lack of training if any at all.Consistancy,diversity,allowing the dog as a youngster to exsperience many many diffrent senerios.Trust must be established from the dog to owner(human).In order for the dog to be able to feel relaxed and comfortable to do now what the owner exspects. Some pick up very quick,some slower.Though fustrating for both dog and owner.Lots of times the owner is at fault for the dog not learning.No slam against humans.I get fustrated.Most times I will rethink how I am trying to communicate it to the dog.Almost all the time the problem will lye within the humans way of teaching.
HT is dead on.To get the most of what you want,look into all he has mentioned.It is the foundation.

Yellow,black,brown and white labs are precious .The color of their coat will not dictate whats inside.
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Old 04-15-2011, 12:48 PM   #32
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Labs and smart in the same sentence is kind of funny Nice, kind, friendly and pleasing maybe, but .....smart :backlaugh:

I dont care what color the dogs hair is, if it doesnt have some black in its mouth, it wont be a smart dog
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Old 04-15-2011, 01:17 PM   #33
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I have a genius chocolate without any black in her mouth. She's actually smarter than most people I've been around.
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Old 04-15-2011, 01:57 PM   #34
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I have a genius chocolate without any black in her mouth. She's actually smarter than most people I've been around.
That I believe.
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Old 04-15-2011, 02:36 PM   #35
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I have to agree with BoE, smart and Labrador? :backlaugh: But color doesn't matter, my brother had a black one that calling him dumber than a box of rocks was an insult to the box of rocks. I've seen hundreds of labs, and generally 99% are wonderful dogs. Funny thing, the only aggressive ones (as in bite w/o being provoked) were yellow, but I'm pretty sure that was more a matter of the owner than the dog.

BTW, if your friend wants smarts in a dog he should get a chessie. Mine's almost finished with "War and Peace". No Tilla, I couldn't resist! :backlaugh::backlaugh:
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:02 PM   #36
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German shorthair pointer is the way to go. At 10 months my GSP is way smarter than my lab. GSP are better in every way, but i dont think Loomis is going to dive in Tillamook bay this up coming winter.
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:18 PM   #37
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German shorthair pointer is the way to go. At 10 months my GSP is way smarter than my lab. GSP are better in every way, but i dont think Loomis is going to dive in Tillamook bay this up coming winter.
Each dog is an individual.
I have a gsp lab mix. He is smart,but cant decide to be a pointer or a lab.Keeps goin back and forth.....
Try owning a rescue dog thats trying to find his identity.
But women and kids love him.Rabbits and cats fear him.
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:18 PM   #38
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

Big, dumb, and the best dog anyone could ever have!

Color of the coat doesn't matter, and yellow is the best.
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Old 04-15-2011, 03:23 PM   #39
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Big, dumb, and the best dog anyone could ever have!

Color of the coat doesn't matter, and yellow is the best.

Yellow,black brown,white.They are all precious in my .

And no one has mentioned grey,light grey,charcole colored ones.
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Old 04-15-2011, 04:48 PM   #40
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yellow is the best.
Not on the furniture they aren't.
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Old 04-15-2011, 06:26 PM   #41
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

I have owned a bunch of dogs many different breeds my Chocolate Lab I had was by far the smartest. Too bad they shed so much I would get another one but moma won't let me have one in the house and I like them in a night for company.

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Old 04-15-2011, 08:53 PM   #42
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My 5 1/2 year chocolate is super smart, my 2 1/2 year yellow is super smart, but they both have a super smart owner
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Old 04-15-2011, 09:41 PM   #43
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Thanks to all the replies. Some pretty funny ones too. Im sure to dog will be just fine. They are good owners and have a yellow lab that is about 6 and she is a very good dog, so the chocolate well have a good teacher.
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Old 04-15-2011, 10:26 PM   #44
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I have four Chocolate's and I wish I was as smart as them...
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Old 04-16-2011, 07:37 AM   #45
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Labs and smart in the same sentence is kind of funny Nice, kind, friendly and pleasing maybe, but .....smart :backlaugh:
Quote:
Originally Posted by James in Idaho View Post
I have to agree with BoE, smart and Labrador? :backlaugh:

Hmmmm....I wonder what breed is chosen most often to serve as a guide dog to the blind?

Answer - its the Labrador followed by the Golden Retriever and German Shepherd.

These breeds are chosen for their obedience, intelligence, ability and willingness to work long hours, ability to tolerate stress, and public acceptability or recognition.

As with any dog, you get from it, what you put in to it.


E
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:01 AM   #46
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...One choc would tip over his water pail, a big galvanized tub. He'd lay on the ground with his head in the bucket and bark for up to an hour. Then he'd do some other stuff with the bucket that I really didn't think possible.

The other would ransack the house about twice a year. Found him one day where he'd managed to wind himself up so tightly in the bedsheets that he couldn't get out. He also defeathered a few mounted ducks...


aw

Too funny, reminds me of a dog that my friend owned. Would flip everything over, go inside his dog igloo house and howl. He was a riot. His main problem was boredom and not enough exercise. Dog whisperer is a great show to showcase styles of dogs and thier requirements. A working dog, must work not play dress up. my
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Old 04-16-2011, 01:06 PM   #47
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Hmmmm....I wonder what breed is chosen most often to serve as a guide dog to the blind?

Answer - its the Labrador followed by the Golden Retriever and German Shepherd.

These breeds are chosen for their obedience, intelligence, ability and willingness to work long hours, ability to tolerate stress, and public acceptability or recognition.

As with any dog, you get from it, what you put in to it.


E
Trainability does not equal intelligence. If the guide dog people were really interested in "smart" dogs most of the guide dogs would be herders or terriers. I'm not knocking labs (I have shared my life with a couple and would gladly do so again), but they ain't the smartest on the block. Chessies are very smart, and that's not always a good thing! It is much more difficult to train a chessie, because they are pretty sure they know more than you. But again, if someone asks me what kind of dog they should get my #1 recommendation is a small, spayed female lab (color doesn't matter).
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Old 04-16-2011, 05:02 PM   #48
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Trainability does not equal intelligence. If the guide dog people were really interested in "smart" dogs most of the guide dogs would be herders or terriers. I'm not knocking labs (I have shared my life with a couple and would gladly do so again), but they ain't the smartest on the block. Chessies are very smart, and that's not always a good thing! It is much more difficult to train a chessie, because they are pretty sure they know more than you. But again, if someone asks me what kind of dog they should get my #1 recommendation is a small, spayed female lab (color doesn't matter).
Guide Dogs for the Blind does not agree with your assesment.

"Our dogs are smart—very smart! In addition to learning how to lead a person safely around obstacles, Guide Dogs are also trained in "intelligence disobedience": if they are given an unsafe command, they are taught to not obey it (for example: refusing to step out into the street when there is oncoming traffic)."

http://www.guidedogs.com/site/PageServer
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Old 04-16-2011, 05:18 PM   #49
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Default Re: Chocolate lab dogs very smart????

If your friend is stuck on getting a beautiful, smart, active, good natured, BROWN dog, he should consider a Viszla. They shed less as well
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Old 04-16-2011, 08:15 PM   #50
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Not on the furniture they aren't.
Thankfully my lab matches the carpet...
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:10 AM   #51
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Trainability does not equal intelligence. If the guide dog people were really interested in "smart" dogs most of the guide dogs would be herders or terriers. I'm not knocking labs (I have shared my life with a couple and would gladly do so again), but they ain't the smartest on the block. Chessies are very smart, and that's not always a good thing! It is much more difficult to train a chessie, because they are pretty sure they know more than you. But again, if someone asks me what kind of dog they should get my #1 recommendation is a small, spayed female lab (color doesn't matter).
Yea I can see a hearding dog being a a great guide dog. Sure the challenged would love being nipped in the feet or calves to get them moving.
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:17 AM   #52
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Thankfully my lab matches the carpet...


:backlaugh:. That is what it takes.
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:16 AM   #53
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Yea I can see a hearding dog being a a great guide dog. Sure the challenged would love being nipped in the feet or calves to get them moving.

Hmmmm.....you may have just hit upon a method to get my teenage kids moving on school mornings.


Regarding James post, he makes a very valid point regarding many of the herding breeds and their intelligence. Border Collies especially have always been at the top of the list.

Part of the problem in this discussion is the defining of "intelligence".

Which dog is smarter? The one who can recognize, respond, and remember a myriad of commands and situations (collie and lab), or the dog that may not rank as high in the obedience column but yet is expected to act independently (hound) to a desired end result thus showing intelligence in another fashion. Which is the smarter???

The latter category is harder to judge, but when it comes to command/obedience intelligence, there was a book called The Intelligence of Dogs written by Stanley Coren in 1994. In his research, dogs were ranked by their ability to learn and understand commands.

Here is the Top 10 list that he produced.
  • Understanding of New Commands: Fewer than 5 repetitions.
  • Obey First Command: 95% of the time or better.
  1. Border Collie
  2. Poodle
  3. German Shepherd
  4. Golden Retriever
  5. Doberman Pinscher
  6. Shetland Sheepdog
  7. Labrador Retriever
  8. Papillon
  9. Rottweiler
  10. Australian Cattle Dog
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Old 04-17-2011, 11:01 AM   #54
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German shorthair pointer is the way to go. At 10 months my GSP is way smarter than my lab. GSP are better in every way, but i dont think Loomis is going to dive in Tillamook bay this up coming winter.
YA the short hairs Im familuar with can run in the house on the walls side ways. he can do the 8ft standing broad jump endlessly. They. can escape the tightest enclosers I always see those the dogs all by them selfs out on the range followed up a few 1000 yards later by the master askin if in ya seen a gsp with a bell or shock collar on its neck:backlaugh: They cant take the weather and swimmin aint their strong suit they are also on the delicate side.
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Old 04-17-2011, 05:51 PM   #55
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My Chocolate Lab is 12 1/2 years old and although his heart says LET'S GO, his body won't let him. Really sad to watch. I remember taking him to my Vet when I first got him. One of the first things my Vet did was to hold his head up and look for the mole under his mouth that he told me all labs have, and then to count the number of hairs growing out of that mole: my Chocolate had/has 3... Then my Vet proceeded to tell me the story of a famous breeder years ago that believed that the more hairs, the smarter the Lab, evidentally they can have as many as 4 hairs.... Have no idea whether there's any truth to the tale my Vet told me, but my Chocolate is pretty smart, very loyal and my best friend.
how many of you looked at your labs "mole" and counted the hairs? I did, my lab has three and she is very smart and a great hunter!!!
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Old 04-18-2011, 08:44 PM   #56
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It completely depends on the dog. The breed is middle of the road as far as intelligence is concerned. I've known very smart labs, and labs that are dumber than a bag of rocks.
Labs are consistently ranked in the top 10 of recognized breeds in the area of intelligence. As a matter of fact, I would say that in general labs are smarter than most hunters. If those claiming to have dumb labs (chocolate ones at that) cannot train their dogs, maybe they should be questioning their own intelligence.
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Old 04-19-2011, 08:06 AM   #57
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One choc would tip over his water pail, a big galvanized tub. He'd lay on the ground with his head in the bucket and bark for up to an hour. Then he'd do some other stuff with the bucket that I really didn't think possible.

The other would ransack the house about twice a year. Found him one day where he'd managed to wind himself up so tightly in the bedsheets that he couldn't get out. He also defeathered a few mounted ducks.
Interesting regarding the bucket thing. Our neighbors (who had never owned a dog before) purchased a chocolate lab for their kids as a pet. Kids were too young. Parents thought dog would "learn".

That dog would knock over his water bucket every morning and stick his head in it and bark at it for hours.....

I know my JRT and Border Collie were embarassed for him

I have since "helped" with some training and now that the dog is older she is a pretty good dog. I'm not going to say she is a dumb dog..... but my JRT would if he could talk.
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Old 04-19-2011, 12:16 PM   #58
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how many of you looked at your labs "mole" and counted the hairs? I did, my lab has three and she is very smart and a great hunter!!!
We always called that a "BS" bump. The bigger the bump, the more of a goofball the dog was. Not that there's anything wrong with that...
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Old 04-19-2011, 12:37 PM   #59
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My Chocolate Lab is 12 1/2 years old and although his heart says LET'S GO, his body won't let him. Really sad to watch. I remember taking him to my Vet when I first got him. One of the first things my Vet did was to hold his head up and look for the mole under his mouth that he told me all labs have, and then to count the number of hairs growing out of that mole: my Chocolate had/has 3... Then my Vet proceeded to tell me the story of a famous breeder years ago that believed that the more hairs, the smarter the Lab, evidentally they can have as many as 4 hairs.... Have no idea whether there's any truth to the tale my Vet told me, but my Chocolate is pretty smart, very loyal and my best friend.
Just checked and my Choc Tanner has 4 hairs! but geez he does some less than stellar things in the intelligence dept sometimes. He is actually a very smart dog but does
"marley out" sometimes. Does need his attention, and at the moment is trying his best to destroy a cow leg bone.
His dad is Bueler, a multiple field campion, and mother another great field dog with alot of field cred.
He is good with kids, but a little too aggressive around the yard,,,meaning he will chase cyclists, joggers and walkers along the fence. That all started after the cougar in the yard incident. Now anything near HIS yard is a danger,, accorging to Tanner's world anyway. Trying to work with this still.

I have been told by 2 others that their chocolates are were "needy" and posses a bit of "separation anxiety" with their owner/handlers. Tanner has proven that. But I think its more in the way he lives. He loves his daddy, momma, and big sis. Ive wanted a chicolate lab for 25 years, still glad I got him every time he licks me. Good boy T-bone,,pat pat. Good boy!
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Old 04-19-2011, 01:00 PM   #60
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Just checked and my Choc Tanner has 4 hairs! but geez he does some less than stellar things in the intelligence dept sometimes. He is actually a very smart dog but does
"marley out" sometimes. Does need his attention, and at the moment is trying his best to destroy a cow leg bone.
His dad is Bueler, a multiple field campion, and mother another great field dog with alot of field cred.
He is good with kids, but a little too aggressive around the yard,,,meaning he will chase cyclists, joggers and walkers along the fence. That all started after the cougar in the yard incident. Now anything near HIS yard is a danger,, accorging to Tanner's world anyway. Trying to work with this still.

I have been told by 2 others that their chocolates are were "needy" and posses a bit of "separation anxiety" with their owner/handlers. Tanner has proven that. But I think its more in the way he lives. He loves his daddy, momma, and big sis. Ive wanted a chicolate lab for 25 years, still glad I got him every time he licks me. Good boy T-bone,,pat pat. Good boy!

Seperation thing can happen to any dog.It just means you need another dog to keep it company.Because they are pack animals this is not uncommen.Had a black lab did the same thing.

My lab,pointer mix has 3 mole hairs.One is a little shorter then the other 2.But do not think this has anything to do with how smart they are.I was told the wisker hairs on the sides and at the bottom helps them from getting their head getting stuck.

I still "marley out".Why?Who knows.As long as Sting "my dog" and I dont do it at the same time it will be ok.

Both of us are work in progress.
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