Fox Red Labrador Retriever Dog Breed Guide
What do you look for in a dog, or rather, what attracts you most to your pet of choice? What makes someone prefer a Chihuahua over a Beagle, or a German Shepherd over a Golden Retriever, or any way vice versa?
Most people will go with the masses and choose the most popular breeds – and that’s fine because numbers don’t lie. Others prefer observing the dog’s personalities and overall association with people and other animals before determining their most suitable pets.
Regardless of the methods we use to choose our favorite dogs, we all have our individual expectations of the desirable pets for our homes – we all prefer affectionate, obedient, and protective pets.
Besides, all dog owners share one similar characteristic – everyone is, even if not expressly, at one point concerned with the physical appearance and color of their ultimate pets.
Those dog owners who reside in polar states have a lot to say about the value of their dogs’ colors. Spotting a white puppy in the vast snow can be more challenging than teaching your dog how to eat with a fork.
However, choosing a dog based on appearance is not just about convenience and safety. It also has a lot to do with human instinct and tendencies and the raging desire for many enthusiasts to nurture beautiful puppies with unique complexions.
That’s why dogs sporting rare colors such as blue, pinto, merle and red tend to cost more from breeders and feature on most occasions as fashion and show dogs.
While we attribute so much glory, fame, and eminence to most of the uniquely colored breeds, little concerning appraisal can be said about the Fox Red Labrador, a rare-colored dog of the Labrador Retriever species.
Even though the dark yellow colors of Fox Red Labs don’t contribute to their ultimate behavioral traits and overall wellbeing, most critics still believe the Labs are not pure Labradors and that their coat colors come with some issues.
That’s not the case – the only difference between other Labradors and the Fox Red Lab is color. Otherwise, these dogs are relatively similar in other appearance aspects and characters, with slight variations depending on their upbringing.
In summary, Fox Red Labs are vibrant, energetic and composed hunting dogs in the Labrador dog breed classification. As per AKC’s rankings, these dogs currently hold the top position as the most famous dogs in North America.
Well, if you haven’t met this famous dog yet, there’s no need for an alarm. We’ll be highlighting significant Labrador traits as we discuss and analyze the epic journey, lifestyle, current requirements, and most importantly, the unique colors of Fox Red Labradors.
The History of Red Fox Labradors
The Labrador is a typical gundog – shooters often rely on gundogs to carefully retrieve birds and other prizes. Labradors are perfect gundogs because they collect games without eating or nipping them.
In Newfoundland, Canadian farmers and hunters initially used Labradors to safely carry fish, birds, and ducks from the waters or hunting grounds to instructed places.
When English visitors observed the unique functionality and skill, they were instantly impressed and requested to travel with some of the Labradors back to Great Britain.
The dog’s fame spiraled afterward, and their official registration by the AKC took place in 1917. Many families in North America preferred Labradors to other dogs because of their patience, obedience, loyalty, and intelligence.
Unlike the typical Labrador, the exact origin of Fox Red Labs is still unknown. However, early sources of information indicate that the Labrador must have been part of the original Labrador Retrievers.
It’s only due to the rising need for fashion and the biased compliance issue that the Fox Red color was shunned down. Other lighter yellow colors were, however, appropriated more recognition and favor.
In other respects, the Fox Red Labrador is a genuine purebred of the Labrador Retriever.
Is there prejudice in show rings against Fox Red Labs?
In essence, the Fox Red Labrador is not a red-colored dog but a yellow one. It’s only that their yellow colors have much darker shades than their other colored counterparts, who mostly have lighter yellow colors that happen to be creamier or whiter.
Fox Red Labs are classified as yellow Labradors and can thus qualify to participate in show rings.
The show ring is a special competition in which different Labradors showcase their abilities and unique talents. The winner with the best or outstanding traits of all takes the prize home.
Other Labradors usually get preferential treatment from judges. Any yellow-colored Labrador but a Fox Red Lab can win any show ring competition.
The main reason for their biased award of marks is that the show ring judges, organizers, and critics don’t consider the Fox Red color as an authentic breed of the Labrador Retriever.
Besides, they believe that the dark shade doesn’t come any close to resembling the conventional yellow colorations of other Labradors. For this reason, Fox Red Labs will only be allowed to join show rings or kennel organizations when enrolled as yellow Labrador Retrievers.
If you own a Fox Red Lab and choose to take it to the show ring, chances are the judges will most likely award your dog fewer marks. If you prefer to nurture a dog for the sake of show rings, it would be best to consider other Labradors but not the Fox Red Lab.
Nonetheless, you shouldn’t sever all your ties with this beautiful Labrador – who knows, your Fox Red Labrador could wow the judges with some rare and exceptional talents and beat all the favored opponents!
Sometimes fortune favors the brave. In this case, it could easily be your unique and confident Fox Red Labrador. So, please don’t give up on that annual show ring; your dog’s fortune is on its way!
Where do Fox Red Labradors get their unusual colors?
Primarily, any dog inherits two genes, each from the male and female parent. One of the genes is always the dominant one and the other recessive. It’s important to note that the offspring will often inherit the dominant genes if their parents have either one or two of them.
On the other hand, recessive traits will only transfer to the puppy if both are present in the parents.
A more technical example is displayed in Labrador Retrievers – the black coat becomes the dominant gene if the parents carry either BB or Bb combinations. The B indicates the black chromosome, while the b refers to the brown trait.
Labrador pups will only inherit the brown traits when their parents have exclusive bb recessive traits. You may be wondering by now, what about the yellow and dark yellow traits? How do they come about?
Like black and brown colors, a yellow shade’s inheritance also follows the same pattern of a dominant and recessive gene.
In EE and Ee combinations, the E genes are dominant and represent the standard yellow – as such, their inheritance would result in the typical light-colored Labrador.
The e represents the recessive yellow colors – the darker shades, like the ones we witness in Fox Red Labs.
However, the Fox Red Lab will only result when both parents carry the ee recessive traits. The ee genes will suppress the light yellow colors to bring out the darker Fox Red complexion.
Apart from the presence of recessive yellow traits, there are other prerequisites for the occurrence of a Fox Red Lab – the pheomelanin pigment and the A & C genes.
Unlike the other genes we mentioned earlier (B, b, E, and e) that strive to dominate over the other, these A and C genes work with each other and coordinate with the pheomelanin, to control the outcome of the redness intensity.
In simpler terms, they expedite the formation of the dark yellow pigment, often in favor of the Fox Red color.
What is the typical appearance of a Fox Red Labrador?
Due to the Fox Red Lab’s rarity and unique color, it’s relatively easy to distinguish them from other dog breeds and Labradors.
The Fox Red color is not the usual strong crimson element, like that of beetroot, but rather, the exact coat color of the Red Fox – red foxes, have the strongest and darkest yellow colors that slightly border golden shades.
As they grow older, Fox Red Labradors develop easily noticeable acme (pinkish) muzzles that lack the same dark yellow intensities of their jackets. They will also sometimes have a few black shades on their coats and white colorations just below their stomachs.
However, most observers imply that the white shades only manifest in Fox Red Labradors because their dark yellow jackets can show the white spots. They go ahead to argue that the white patches in other light yellow Labradors go unnoticed because of their fairer complexions.
As we have emphasized previously, Fox Red Labs and typical Labradors share similar physical and behavioral characteristics except for color.
Therefore, you should anticipate the Fox Red Lab to have the same physical stature as a typical Labrador Retriever, including their weight and height measurements.
Male Labrador Retrievers measure between twenty-two to twenty-five inches and can weigh sixty to eighty-five pounds. On the other hand, females, when fully mature, reach not more than twenty-four inches and will weigh fifty to seventy-five pounds.
The Labrador’s neck is thick and robust, and they have heavyset bodies. Their thick tails have a soft papery feel. The Fox Red Lab’s eyes are round and big, and their adorable faces will do little in convincing you of their mischief.
Before their color controversy, Fox Red Labs used to accompany their masters to shooting adventures. These dogs were quite reliable because they safely carried small hunted animals without maiming or killing them.
However, the introduction of compliance standards shone away their spotlight and even almost disregarded their reputation as exemplary hunting dogs.
The temperament of a Fox Red Lab and their exercise needs
This dog’s diverse but perfectly blending temperaments make all Fox Red Labradors the best choices for outgoing and active families. No wonder they are the most popular breeds in all of America.
They have a friendly attitude and require vigorous exercises because they are energetic dogs. Fox Red Labs can be playful, gentle, and at the same time, loyal companions.
These dogs also make lovely buddies out of your children and interact with other pets or animals, including cats, without causing them any injury.
However, like any other dog that requires a proper upbringing, the Fox Red Labrador needs early socialization with children, the neighbor’s pets, and other new faces to adequately learn how to associate freely and without boundaries.
While some critics believe Fox Red Labradors tend to be more vocal or bark loudly than other Labrador Retrievers, experts reveal that the loudness is only an inherited trait the dogs get from a particular ancestor in their genealogy.
Therefore, it’s entirely by chance that your Fox Red Labrador will inherit the extra loudness – it’s not a common trait in all Fox Red Labradors.
A Fox Red Lab requires one hour of physical practice each day. Don’t also forget to include mental practice sessions in your regular exercise schedule.
Physical activities help to burn calories and keep the dogs fit. Remember to diversify your dog’s games as it prevents boredom – you can achieve this by including fetching exercises and swimming sessions to improve the pet’s agility as well.
General grooming requirements
Fox Red Labs shed heavily, especially during the sloughing seasons because they have thick furs. These Labrador Retrievers have multipurpose double coats that provide warmth in cold weather and keep at bay rainwater and snow.
Because of their dense undercoats and heavy sloughing, Fox Red Labs require daily brushing during shedding periods and brushing twice a week in the non-shedding seasons.
Don’t forget that the Labrador’s nails may grow out of their paws and require regular clipping. The dog’s ears and teeth are vital body organs that need to be checked and cleaned regularly – the ears for contamination and the teeth for plaque.
The surest way to keep your Fox Red Lab healthy is feeding them high-quality meals. Dog food packages often have stickers that indicate their recommended feeding proportions.
Make sure you feed your dogs the right meals as per their nutritional needs. Fox Red Labs need foods with high amounts of fats and proteins and low carbohydrate content, particularly during their transition to adulthood.
Usually, the Fox Red Lab consumes three cups of kibble each day.
However, the dog doesn’t have the same instincts as other breeds; the senses tell the dog how full the belly is after a meal – for this reason, the Fox Red Lab will always want to eat more. It’s thus wise to regulate their meals to prevent obesity.
Common health problems affecting Fox Red Labs
A Fox Red Lab can live for ten to twelve years. They are pretty healthy dogs, and their dark yellow jackets have nothing to do with their overall health situation. Like any other Labrador, the Fox Red Lab can suffer from various health issues.
The most common complication is elbow and hip dysplasia that affects the dog’s joints. Eyesight defects can cause partial or complete loss of sight. Fox Red Labradors can also lose control of their muscles after intense training.
To prevent these problems from becoming more serious, we suggest that, before the acquisition, caregivers test the puppies and their parents for any symptoms. If positively detected, report to the vet for immediate treatment.
How to find healthy Labrador puppies from breeders and rescues
The most critical step in finding a healthy pup is adequately researching different rescues, breeders, and shelters before adoption.
The average price of a Labrador is $1000. However, Fox Red Labradors cost more than their standard counterparts because they are currently quite rare.
If you are purchasing your Labrador from a breeder, ensure you review the puppy’s health papers and request examining the parents’ health. If you doubt anything, it’s best to clear the air than regret later after discovering undisclosed health issues.
Your best chance at finding a healthy puppy from a renowned shelter or rescue lies with the AKC – the institution regularly recommends reputable institutions that guarantee healthy Labrador pups.
However, if you plan to adopt your pup from a rescue, we advise that you create enough time to teach and exercise your dog. The training helps orient the Labrador to your new life and make them social and interactive with other humans and pets.
Many aspiring owners frequently ask: how does the Fox Red Lab fair as a family dog? Can the dark yellow color of the Lab change? And, is the Fox Red Lab, in any degree, related to the Vizsla?
Before we answer anything else, I’d like to reassure you that the Fox Red Labrador is one of the best and most reliable family dogs.
With a comprehensive upbringing and socialization, the Fox Red Lab not only plays gently with young kids and pets but also obediently responds to instructions.
Concerning the Fox Red color, these Labradors are born with the dark yellow shades, which become lighter as they grow and darker again towards maturity at two to three years.
There are also no proven blood relations between Vizslas and Fox Red Labs, despite their matching frames – the Vizsla, however, sports a smaller frame.
In a nutshell, Fox Red Labradors require obedience coaching and strict teachers to train them to their full potential. Also, to keep your Labradors busy, we recommend acquiring chewable toys.
There is no particular reason to prevent you from adopting the Fox Red Lab as your family pet, despite their unwarranted coloration controversy.
These dogs are currently prime choices for most owners and currently rank among the top ten worldwide when it comes to intelligence. Besides, their unique colors make them quite special and rare – trust me, owning a Fox Red Lab is the best decision you’ll ever make!