Thursday, February 9, 2012

What ARE you?

People unfamiliar with English (or show/conformation) labs are always asking what I am.  Because I'm short and stocky, with a HUGE blocky head, people think I'm something other than a lab.  People have actually argued with mom when she has told them I'm a lab!  "He can't be a lab -- labs have more pointy noses," said one woman.  "Labs are usually bigger," said another.  "He's mixed with something else, isn't he?" asked a guy today.

More than once, people have asked if I'm part pitbull.  Maybe it's because I have a big head, or maybe it's because, like the pitties I know, I LOVE people and I'm very cuddly and affectionate.

I think I confuse people, because they are accustomed to seeing American (or working/field) labs, who are usually bigger, taller, slimmer, and have more pointy snouts.  I have lots of friends who are American labs, and they are awesome doggies too!  I envy some of my American lab friends because they have an easier time counter-surfing because they are so tall!

Me (English lab) and my pal Nora (American lab)
My buddy Hero is part English and part American lab
(so he's the best of both worlds!)

Some of my friends suspect that I'm part polar bear because of my pale coloring, impressive swimming skills, and love for freezing cold water, snow, and ice.

I suppose it's also because of my undeniable resemblance to polar bears!

This is one of my puppy photos which has led to speculation:
Puppy or polar bear?
This is me swimming:
Puppy or polar bear?
Me swimming again:
Puppy or polar bear?
Me (Compare this and the following photo to the photos
that come up if you Google "polar bear face picture")

In spite of the very strong photographic evidence that I'm part polar bear, the truth is that I'm 100% lab, and am actually very close to what a show/conformation lab is supposed to look like.   I'm about an inch or so short of being perfect for a male show/conformation lab -- but mom and dad think I'm perfect anyway!

Like all individuals, my breed is only part of who I am.  I have a multi-faceted personality!  I'm a trick dog, therapy dog, reading-assistance dog, cadet Dog Scout, and chief cuddler in my household.  I'm also quite a fashion hound (that will be a future blog post), and I'm an Adventure Dog extraordinaire (See My Mango Minster Adventure Dog Entry).

And yes, I am a pirate.


  1. I can remember the first time I saw an American Lab I was stunned at how different they were to our English Labs, you are without a doubt a very fine example of an English Lab Garth. You have that same soft expression and your nose is just as kissable as my Old labby boy Jazz's, that beautiful wide head that is so perfect for resting a hand on. You are just PERFECT

    Momma Tea
    xxx xxx

    1. Thank you! That's so sweet of you to say. My mom and dad LOVE my big block head, and mom loves when I rest it in her lap!

  2. Garth, Hero asked me to say how honoured he was to be included in the King of Trick's blog He also wanted me to say that he knows exactly how you feel cos people are always asking his Mum if he is a 'real' Lab! He has lots of tall leggy American lab friends too and I reckon that they are the runway models of the lab world and you and Hero are the film stars! Well lets face it with eyes like yours and a face like his what else could you both be? Best of all are your loving natures and sense of fun! As for the Polar Bear connection...well you both sleep a lot, swim brilliantly and love food, have water proof coats and love the cold.....Polarlabs!
    Love your blogs Garth! xxx

    1. Is Hero a "real" lab? That's the funniest thing I've heard in a long time -- he's one of the BEST labs we know! He really is the best of both English and American labs, and we've never met a lab so well-behaved at his young age. Plus we admire Hero's build - very athletic, not as stocky as me but not as lanky as an American lab.

      So glad you enjoy my blog!!!

  3. You did kinda look like Flocke although she is a girl bear. We had no idea about English labs--we thought you were a pale yellow lab. We like pirates around here (my mom writes historical romance).

    love & wags,