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Labradors and Rottweilers

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Labradors and Rottweilers are two of the many breeds of dogs that people find very cute. There are many differences and a few similarities between Labradors and Rottweilers. Some of their differences and similarities that this paper will look at are their appearance, temperament, performance, and health.

First, let us look at the Labrador, which is a sporting dog, bred to function as a retrieving-gun dog. The Labradors appearance is that of a medium sized breed, which stands 23 to 24 inches high at the shoulder and weighs about 60 to 80 pounds when full grown. (5) They also have short and exceedingly dense black, yellow, or chocolate-colored coat that is almost unaffected by water. (3) Labradors do shed. They have a clean-cut head with a broad back skull, powerful jaws and their ears are medium-sized which hang fairly close to their head and kind eyes that are friendly and usually black or brown. Labradors also have a wide, deep chest and straight legs. (8) Their tails are like that of an otters, which is of medium length, very thick at the base, and tapering gradually to the tip. (7) The tail is also covered with the same short, dense hair, just like their coat. (6)

Labradors have a temperament that is of a kindly, outgoing, eager to please and they are not aggressive towards humans or other animals. (8) Some of the Labradors qualities that appeal to many people are their gentle ways, intelligence, adaptability, even-tempered; they are utterly dependable with children, loyal, devoted, affectionate, and highly trainable. (6) While the Labrador is not an aggressive dog, they will bark to ward off strangers and definitely let you know someone is lurking around where they should not be. (8)

The performance of the Labrador is that it is bred to discover or hunt and retrieve or fetch waterfowl or upland game such as pheasants for hours under difficult conditions. (4) Labs love to swim and are excellent swimmers. (14) Labs are the favored breed as family pets, rescue dogs, service dogs, that are guides for the blind and helpers for the deaf, and therapy dogs for paralyzed people.

Some known health problems of the Lab are Hip Dysplasia, which is a painful arthritic condition caused by a deformation of the hip joint, Osteochondrosis dissecans, eye problems, including PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy), cataracts, and retinal dysplasia, Cold Tail, also called wash tail and limber tail and ear infections. Other issues are epilepsy, thyroid function and skin allergies. Labradors are also prone to mild skin allergies. (9)

Next, we look at the Rottweilers, which is breed of working dog. Some people believe that the Rottweiler may have descended from a herding dog used by the Roman armies. They were used at that time to drive their cattle and guard their camps. They also, pulled meat carts for butchers in Germany. (13) Their general appearance is that they are a medium large, robust, and powerful dog. They are muscular and athletic and have a compact and substantial build. (12) Rottweilers stand at about 22 to 27 inches and they can weigh anywhere between 75 and 130 pounds. (11) Rottweilers’ coats have short, coarse, flat hair that have distinct coloring, always black, and clearly defined markings that are rust to mahogany colored. (11) Rotts do shed their coat. The Rottweilers head is of medium length and broad between the ears. Their ears are medium size, pendant, and triangular. (10) Their eyes are dark brown. They have strong, broad upper and lower jaws; the chest is roomy, broad, and deep. (10) Their tail is docked short, close to body, leaving one or two tail vertebrae. (10)

The Rottweilers temperament is reliable, calm, confident, and courageous with a self-assured aloofness that does not lend itself to immediate and indiscriminate friendships. (10) “A Rottweiler is self-confident and responds quietly, with a wait-and-see attitude toward influences in his environment.” (12) Rottweilers are natural protectors, but can be aggressive with other dogs and people, without the proper training. (13)

The Rottweilers performance is that of a working dog. This dog is very trainable and devoted to their owner and family. The Rottweilers nature makes it suitable for livestock herding, search and rescue, assistance and therapy, and performance and conformation rings. The Rottweiler is powerful and intelligent. The Rottweiler is an outstanding family companion. (2)

Rottweilers have some known health problems and are subject to quite a few genetically derived health disorders, like hip dysplasia and OCD (Osteochondrosis dissecans), entropion and ectropion, which are deformities of the eyelid, under active thyroid and bloat gastric dilation, which is an often-fatal disorder of the digestive system. (1)

In conclusion, both the Labrador and Rottweiler are great dogs when trained the proper way, despite their similarities and differences. Also, as with any breed of dog always do your homework on the breed before getting that cute, lovable puppy, which grows up to be big someday.


(1) “2004 North East Rottweiler Rescue & Referral, Inc.”

http://www.rottrescue.org Copyright 2003 All rights reserved.

(2) “About Rottweilers and Rottweiler Ownership” American Rottweiler Club

http://www.amrottclub.org/Breed%20Info.htm American Rottweiler Club All Rights Reserved [1996-2004]

(3) “CHOOSING A LABRADOR” Wing-N-Wave Labradors

http://www.labbies.com/choose.htm ‘Copyright 2000, 1992 Pamela A. Davol’

Pamela A. Davol, 76 Mildred Avenue, Swansea, MA 02777-1620.

[email protected]

(4) “Dog Shows and Trials,” Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2004

http://encarta.msn.com © 1997-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

(5) “Flat-Coated Retriever,” Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2004

http://encarta.msn.com © 1997-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

(6) “Labrador Retriever” American Kennel Club


© 2003 AKC. All rights reserved.

Resources/References Continued:

(7) “Labrador Retriever,” Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2004

http://encarta.msn.com © 1997-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

(8) “Labrador Retriever” Yahoo! Pets http://pets.yahoo.com/pets/dogs/breed/labrador_retriever

Copyright © 2004 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

(9) “rec.pets.dogs: Labrador Retrievers Breed-FAQ”

Liza Lee Miller, [email protected] Cindy Tittle Moore, [email protected]


Hosted by K9 WEB Last Update February 20 2004 @ 00:31 AM

(10) “Rottweiler” American Kennel Club


© 2003 AKC. All rights reserved.

(11) “Rottweiler,” Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2004

http://encarta.msn.com © 1997-2004 Microsoft Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

(12) “Rottweiler” Yahoo! Pets


Copyright © 2004 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

Resources/References Continued:

(13) “So, You Now Own a Rottweiler: A Problem Solving Guide to Responsible Ownership”

Produced by Volunteers of North East Rottweiler Rescue and Referral, Inc.

http://www.rottrescue.org/education.html#Intro Copyright 1998, 2000 Updated March 2003


http://www.labbies.com/history.htm ‘Copyright 2000, 1992 Pamela A. Davol’

Pamela A. Davol, 76 Mildred Avenue, Swansea, MA 02777-1620.

[email protected]

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