The Labrador retriever, usually referred to as a lab, is a dog breed that has a reputation for being gentle and eager to please; it also is the most common breed to be kept as a pet in the United States. However, since it is a high-energy breed, labs can be excitable. Encourage your lab to be calm and balanced by practicing these techniques.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Take your Labrador on a long walk every day to help him burn excess energy. Walk for at least an hour. Alternatively split the walk into two shorter walks to be taken throughout the day. Enjoy play sessions with your dog to also encourage him to burn energy. If your dog's excitement is triggered by guests coming to the house, remember to walk him just before friends or family are due to arrive to tire him out and keep him calm.
Ignore your dog when he gets overly excited. Turn your back to him if he jumps up at you or barks in an attention-seeking fashion. Inform guests to treat the Labrador the same way when they enter your home. Maintain a calm mental attitude when in the company of your dog and avoid reinforcing his excited state of mind by giving him affection when he is excited.
Give affection to your dog when he is in a calm state to reward him for his good behaviour. Do this by petting the lab, giving him plenty of verbal praise and giving occasional treats.
Tips and warnings
- Walk your lab before feeding him, instead of after -- this can prevent canine bloat, a condition that can be fatal if not treated immediately.
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