Labrador Retriever

12 Common and Rare Labrador Retriever Colors

The Labrador Retriever is available in different colors. In this article we have summarized everything about the common and rare Labrador Retriever colors.

According to the standard, the Labrador Retriever is available in 3 colors: Yellow, Black and Chocolate. Yellow is defined from light cream to orange (fox red). Gray (silver) is a trend color from the USA and not a standard.

common and rare labrador retriever colors
Photo: Labrador retriever in the standard official colors: Yellow, Black and Chocolate

Labrador Coat Color: Yellow

The bright color exude a natural kindness to the yellow Labrador retrievers. There is the yellow coat color in different shades. From almost white to light-cream, champagne to orange (fox red). Yellow labradors are also particularly popular as show dogs.

Photo: An Almost White Labrador Retriever
Photo: Labrador retriever in bright cream, champagne
Photo: Yellow Labrador (12 months old)
Photo: A very nice labrador in the color fox red

Labrador Coat Color: Black

Black is the most common and popular color among Labrador retrievers. In the 19th century, all labradors were black. Only later were all other colors bred from them.

Photo: Black Labrador Retriever

Black labradors are also most commonly used for hunting. They should be particularly calm and patient.

Photo: Black Labrador retrievers are often used as an expert dog for duck hunting

The black Labrador retrievers have one disadvantage: Due to the dark color they look very similar and have been confused by owners. 

Labrador Coat Color: Chocolate

The official color of the brown Labrador Retriever is chocolate. This color was not originally desired. In the 19th century all puppies that were not black were killed. It wasn’t until 1960 that the color brown became more popular. After the renaming to chocolate, brown labradors became more and more popular as family dogs.

Photo: Chocolate Labrador retriever training in the water

According to research, chocolate labrador retrievers are said to be more difficult to train and noise-sensitive, making them less likely to be trained for hunting. They should also have a lower life expectancy. Almost one and a half years shorter than the yellows and blacks.

Photo: A beautiful chocolate Labrador

Despite everything, the chocolate Labrador is to be recommended as a family dog without restriction.

Rare Labrador Retriever Colors

Trend Color from USA: Silver

The color silver is not a standalone color and is not recognized by the FCI. It is mainly bred in the USA. This trend color brings with it many controversial debates (positive and negative). The silver color was bred from the chocolate Labrador Retrievers.

Photo: Labrador Puppy in Silver

Color Variations in Labrador Retriever

Since the Labrador Retriever was bred from different breeds, color variations may occur.

There are the following inherited variations:

  • White mark on chest
Photo: Black Lab with white chest
  • Black and Tan (black basic coloring with lighter spots)
Photo: “Black & Tan Labradors” by Davie Dunn is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
  • Chocolate and Tan (chocolate basic coloring with lighter spots)
  • Brindle (tabby)
Photo: Labrador Retriever in Brindle
  • Bolo marks (white spots on the back of the paws)

Characteristics of the Fur

The fur of a Labrador Retriever is short, dense and hard. Labradors have a water-repellent outer coat and an insulating inner coat. The color does not play a role in the coat properties. The Labrador Retriever’s fur is shiny if fed well.

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