The Kennel Club
Breed Standard of Retriever (Labrador)
with kind permission from The Kennel Club
The Kennel Club © March 1994
Strongly built, short-coupled, very active; broad in skull; broad and deep
through chest and ribs; broad and strong over loins and hindquarters.
Good-tempered, very agile. Excellent nose, soft mouth; keen
love of water. Adaptable devoted companion.
Intelligent, keen and biddable, with a strong will to
please. Kindly nature, with no trace of aggression or undue shyness.
Head and Skull
Skull broad with defined stop; clean-cut without fleshy cheeks. Jaws of
medium length, powerful not snipy. Nose wide, nostrils well developed.
Medium size, expressing intelligence and good temper, brown
Not large or heavy, hanging close to head and set rather
Jaws and teeth strong with a perfect, regular and complete
scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set
square to the jaws.
Clean, strong, powerful, set into well placed shoulders.
Shoulders long and sloping. Forelegs well boned and straight from elbow to
ground when viewed from either front or side.
Chest of good width and depth, with well sprung barrel ribs. Level top
line. Loins wide, short-coupled and strong.
Well developed, not sloping to tail; well turned
stifle. Hocks well let down, cow hocks highly undesirable.
Round, compact; well arched toes and well developed pads.
Distinctive feature, very thick towards base, gradually
tapering towards tip, medium length, free from feathering, but clothed
thickly all round with short, thick, dense coat, thus giving 'rounded'
appearance described as 'Otter' tail. May be carried gaily but should not
curl over back.
Free, covering adequate ground; straight and true in front and rear.
Distinctive feature, short-dense without wave or
feathering, giving fairly hard feel to the touch; weather-resistant
Wholly black, yellow or liver/chocolate. Yellows range from
light cream to red fox. Small white spot on chest permissible.
Ideal height at withers; dogs 56-57 cms (22-221/2ins); bitches
54-56 cms (211/2ins).
Any departure from the foregoing points should be
considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be
regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.
Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles
fully descended into the scrotum.