The Labrador retriever originates from Labrador peninsula, Newfoundland island. The ancestors of the breed were brought to Britain, where the breed was developed to the present Labrador retriever.
Descriptions of a Labrador date back to the 18th and 19th century in the eastern coast of Canada. This early Labrador was a fisherman’s helper, retrieving fish and game. It had a strong retrieving instinct and a thick, water-resistant coat. These dogs were cross-bred with British gun dogs and some other breeds. Thanks to wise breeding, the qualities of the original Labrador dog were preserved in the breed. The English Kennel Club acknowledged the Labrador retriever as a breed in 1903.
The first Labradors were brought to Finland in the 1950s. The number or registered dogs increased until the 1990s. Labrador retriever was the most popular breed in Finland in 2012 with nearly 2000 new registered dogs.
Apart from retrieving game, Labradors are also used as field tracking dogs, guide dogs for the blind, bomb dogs and therapy dogs. Labradors are friendly and fond of children, happy and full of energy, thus they make very good family pets. They are nevertheless happiest when they are at work, swimming and retrieving game.