Great Britain is the country of origin of the Labrador Retriever, and therefore the British Standard of the Breed has been adopted by most countries and is used at International dog shows. Like most Standards, its purpose is to remind judges and experienced breeders of the important features of the breed, and not to describe the Labrador in detail for novice fanciers.
The Blueprint of the Breed, written by Richard Anderton in the first half of the twentieth century, provides this detailed description and is an excellent reference for not only novices, but for experienced breeders and exhibitors as well.
GB Sh.CH. Bradking Hugo - 50 Challenge Certificates, the breed record
Strongly built, short-coupled, very active; broad in skull, broad and deep through the chest and ribs; broad and strong over loins and hindquarters.
Good-tempered, very agile (which precludes excessive body weight or excessive substance). 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 or hazel.
Not large or heavy, hanging close to head and set rather far back.
Jaws and teeth strong with a perfect, regular and complete scissors 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 - this effect not to be produced by carrying excessive weight. Level topline. Loins wide, short-coupled and strong.
Well developed, not sloping to tail; well turned stifle. Hocks well let down, cowhocks 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 touch; weather-resistant undercoat.
Wholly black, yellow or liver/chocolate. Yellows range from light cream to red fox. Small white spot on chest permissible.
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 and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.
Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.