The chocolate Labrador Retriever, initially known as the “ugly duckling” is now among one of the most in-demand dog breeds. With his endearing personality and willingness to please; the chocolate, along with yellow, fox red, and black Labrador, have won first place among the hearts of millions of dog lovers. In fact, the Labrador Retriever has been Americas number one dog for the past 28 years, according to AKC records.
The chocolate Labrador Retriever was admitted to the breed long after the yellow and black Labrador. It was not until the twentieth century that these dogs were recognized in the United States. Until that time both chocolate and yellow were considered outcast. These colors, when compared to the black Labrador, were not considered to be “show quality,” when it came to exhibitions.
The chocolate color in Labs is not a simple recessive gene. It is even more difficult for breeders to determine a pattern to constantly produce chocolate colored Labs with the same dark shading and color intensity. Many geneticists think that this breed is produced through the action of partial dominant genes.
Like all Labradors, the chocolate-colored ones have a soft and sweet behavior. The eyes are the passage to the soul of a Labrador. Friendly and loyal, the eyes of a Lab tell the story of this attractive breed.
Raised to hunt, recover and rescue, this dog has resilience and energy to spare, which makes it a good hunting partner. Easy to train, these Labradors excel in field trials, agility and obedience. Stable and reliable, this breed is notable as rescue and search canines, assistance for the physically disabled and guide dogs for the blind . His intelligence, kindness, and ability to adapt, make him popular as a family pet. Labradors are among the most popular dog breed in the world.
Any dog breed can have almost any color eyes. It mostly depends on their genetics. However, for a Labrador to have blue eyes, the genetics has to be very poor. According to basic breed standard Friendly eyes means the dog will have a good temperament, alertness, and intelligence.
• Eye color should be brown in both yellow and black Labradors, and hazel or brown in chocolate labs. Yellow or black eyes are undesirable as they give a harsh expression.
• Eyes being too small or set close together are also not typical of the breed.
• Eye rims should be black in the yellow and black Labrador; and brown in the chocolate Lab. An eye rim without pigmentation is considered a disqualification.
It is hard to disagree, that the green, hazel or golden eyes of the Lab give it a truly outstanding presence. And the different shading in the coats from the light chocolate to the dark chocolate color attracts many owners to the Labrador breed.
Ruffwood Labs would love to pair you with your next best four-legged friend, no matter what eye color or coat color you prefer.
But I’ve seen a chocolate Lab with blue eyes for sale!
Blue eyes don’t appear in chocolate brown Labs which meet the breed standard, but you may still have seen pictures of them. Here’s how.
All Labrador puppies are born with blue eyes to begin with. Of course, you won’t be able to see them right away, because they remain tight shut until they are approaching 2 weeks old. Once they open they still won’t have any pigment in them yet, so puppy eyes appear blue for at least another week or two. The earliest you might start to see their final eye color appearing is about a month old, and it can take a further two months for the pigment to finish developing. So there’s a good chance that you’ll be able to bring home a baby chocolate Lab with blue eyes at 8 weeks old. They just won’t stay blue for much longer, so enjoy them while they last!
If you meet an adult chocolate Lab dog with blue eyes, the chances are they’re not a full blooded Lab. They could have inherited the blue eye gene from a Husky ancestor and combined it with the genes for a brown coat. Or, they could have inherited the merle gene from a merle ancestor. If they have the merle gene they will also have a merle pattern coat, so have a look for tell tale patches of dilute fur color. But bear in mind though that merle patterning occurs on a spectrum, and ‘minimal’ or ‘cryptic’ merles have very few dilute patches at all!
If you’ve rescued an adult chocolate Lab with blue eyes, you can pay for DNA tests to find out what other breeds occupy places in their family tree, and whether they carry the ALX4 or merle gene.
What about Lab with blue eyes?
Chocolate Labs don’t have blue eyes because the breed standard doesn’t allow for any of the genetic mechanisms which would make it possible. They are highly pigmented dogs, and that includes their eyes!
However, some Labradors with the color dilution gene do make less pigment than others. Silver Labs are chocolate Labs with the color dilution gene. Their coat is lighter brown than a traditional chocolate Lab – think more chocolate milkshake than chocolate brownie. Their eyes are lighter too – usually somewhere between amber and pale green. Silver Labs with very light green eyes are perhaps the closest it is possible to get to a chocolate Lab with blue eyes, but they still aren’t blue in the truest sense.
Should I Get a Rescue Labrador?
Anytime that you are able to get a rescue dog, it is better than purchasing from a breeder.
The first reason is that these dogs that are at rescue centers need a forever home. If you decide to take a rescue, you are giving the dog to have a happy life for the rest of its life.
Another reason to get a rescue Labrador is if you are looking for a dog that is past its puppy stage and is in adulthood.
Rescue dogs will love their new homes and they will work hard to make sure that you are pleased with them, making their life better and making them easier to train and get used to their new home.
Rescue dogs are loveable and happy when they get in their new homes because they are desperately looking for a forever family to call their own.
How do you tell if a puppy’s eyes will stay blue?
What does blue eyes in a puppy mean?
Do charcoal Labs eyes stay blue?