In an effort to improve our line of chocolate labradors, I was looking for two things: intelligence and health. I figured good disposition just comes naturally to a labrador. That is why they have been the most popular breed for almost 15 years.
My selection of a sire was based on proven good health as shown by genetic testing and longevity. I selected an older male (at least six years old) as if he has no health issues by that time, then chances are he is a pretty healthy guy. Drake is now seven (had a birthday last December). He also has produced offspring that are also healthy (check out the OFA website). I also was looking for proven trainability as shown by titles. And Drake's bio reads:
Drake is a handsome male with a great personality. He marks extremely well, trains great, has awesome water entries, and has a wonderful temperament! He runs hard and has a great mind. This is a male that can produce everything in a dog you could want!
Why select an American dog? Well that had to do with the availability of Canadian dogs with the same level of health checks and proven intelligence. Drake is a field champion, as were his father and grand-father. He comes from some of the best chocolate lines in the world. We also wanted to keep to the American type as well, as they have a leaner look and are more athletic. If you check out the American breeders, you will find that Drake is being used by some of the top breeding programs in the US including DreamMeyers, SkyHighRetrievers, Yardley Labs, Cedar Hills.....the list goes on.
I know how intelligent and healthy Kassey is. She has a wonderful gentle disposition. There is not a dog or person she has ever met that she has not gotten along with, although she has been known to chase gophers. She is a lean, athletic beauty who loves to work and go on walks.
I plan on keeping at least one of the puppies from this litter, because I know what a great addition it will be to our family.