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You have a picture in your head. A picture of yourself with your practically perfect dog. You’ve always preferred big dogs, and your ideal dog is sturdy, strong, and energetic. At the same time, you envision a dog who is gentle and completely in tune to your needs, your whims, and your every move. That perfect dog is likely a Labrador Retriever. After all, the Labrador Retriever is the most popular dog in the United States, according to American Kennel Club registrations. Labs are beautiful, friendly, adaptable, easygoing, brave, loyal, dependable, and intelligent. What could be better? Labrador Retrievers For Dummies is a useful guide to have if you're thinking of getting a Lab or even if you already own one. Perhaps you're just curious about this popular breed. This handy reference is for you if you want to Find out if a Lab suits your lifestyle Know what to look for in Lab pups Determine if a breeder meets high standards Understand health and nutrition needs Handle emergencies with a cool head Train your dog with the lure-and-reward technique Show off your Lab in competitions You can live a fulfilling life with your Lab by making sure she is socialized, healthy, and well trained. What better task for humans and dogs than to be great companions for each other? However, you may need some help in knowing how to get the most out of your relationship with your Lab. This friendly guide offers that help with the following topics and more: Exercising your pup and older Lab Choosing the right veterinarian Exploring spaying/neutering Keeping your Lab beautiful with good grooming Helping your dog deal with divorce, a new baby, moving Managing barking and whining Housetraining your new puppy Traveling to dog-friendly vacation destinations Choosing a pet sitter or boarding kennel Volunteering your lab as a therapy dog Labrador Retrievers are big, energetic, and sometimes boisterous (especially as puppies), and they don't take care of themselves. They need you. Don't let them need you unless you're ready to be needed.