The parental stock Labrador Retriever was nearly wiped out by home country tax policies but the breed found rescue and recovery in foreign lands, particularly in Great Britain.
Springador Scientific Classification
- Scientific Name
- Canis lupus
Springador Physical Characteristics
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As with many other hybrid breeds of dog, the Springador emerged from the genetic crossbreeding frenzy of the late 1980s to early 2000s. Also, like numerous other experiments of the time that turned out well, the actual breeder of origin remains unknown. It could well be that breeders were creating highly-capable “mutts” for their own personal uses but had no idea that they would ever become desirable in a world obsessed with perfectly-pedigreed purebreds.
In any event, the Springador is a cross between an English Springer Spaniel and the originally-from-Canada Labrador Retriever. While this is the currently most popular name for the dog, it is also known as a Labradinger, a Labradinger Retriever, or, less frequently, as a Springerdor. The Springador is an intelligent, friendly animal with a decent lifespan that is also well equipped for use as a family pet, in hunting, or even as a service dog.
3 Pros and 3 Cons of Owning A Springador
|Very Social: The dog is very friendly and highly intelligent.||Sheds a lot: Above-average shedding.|
|A great hunting companion: Great hunting and retrieving dog.||Can’t be left alone: Not the best dog to leave alone for long periods of time.|
|Easy to train: Obedient and very easy to train.||Not great around small children or pets: Good family dog but needs to be carefully introduced to children and other small pets.|
Springador Size And Weight
The Springador is a large dog that stands between 18 to 24 inches in height. It weighs between 50 to 90 pounds when fully grown.
|Height (Male):||18 to 24 inches|
|Height (Female):||18 to 24 inches|
|Weight (Male):||50 to 90 pounds|
|Weight (Female):||50 to 90 pounds|
Springador Common Health Issues
From its Labrador parents, the Springador can show an increased tendency towards hip dysplasia, which is a geriatric condition where the ball and socket joints of the hip bones wear out. They are also subject to cataract issues in the eyes as they age. From the Springer Spaniel side of the family, a slightly greater than average tendency towards epilepsy is the most common health issue. In summation, a Springador’s main potential health concerns are:
- Cataracts (late in life)
- Hip Dysplasia (late in life)
Springadors are loving, loyal, and obedient dogs that are well-suited as both family pets and as working dogs. From the Springer Spaniel part of their genetics, they can exhibit a somewhat cringing personality when being yelled at. Springadors are also more sensitive to mental and physical abuse when being trained or first socialized into the family. They must be generously treated from the outset to cement their future undying loyalty. Their behavior can also be negatively affected by separation anxiety if left alone too much or too often. They need to be part of a vigorous team that gets plenty of outdoor time in order to maximize the breed’s multitude of superior traits.
How To Take Care Of Springadors
The main thing that anyone raising a Springador puppy needs to be aware of is their basic nature as a hunter. Unless carefully corrected early on, they can regard any living thing smaller than themselves as game to be run down rather than as a companion pet.
Food And Diet
As with virtually all breeds, the general recommendation is to control your pet’s food intake carefully and largely restrict it to standard dog kibbles. The main rationale for this is due to the relatively small amount of activity and exercise modern house pets receive.
Avoiding obesity is therefore a major consideration, particularly among breeds that are used to burning off a lot of calories in their normal workday. Springadors should be fed twice daily -morning and evening- with not more than 2 cups of food per serving being provided. Any quality brand dog food will serve their needs in almost all cases.
Maintenance And Grooming
As with many hybrids that are crossed between a long-haired and short-haired animal, maintenance and grooming needs will depend on which half of the parental stock predominates. Dogs that inherit more of the Springer Spaniel coat than the Labrador one will need much more frequent brushing, more care and inspection of the ears, and trips to the dog groomer to keep them looking and feeling in tip-top condition.
Those which show more Labrador traits require far less maintenance but are considered to be much less “showy” than their long-haired cousins. Brushing them out once or twice a week rather than every day or every other day is the main payoff for shorter hair breeds. Regardless of which type of Springador one has, they do shed more than some other breeds. They will need to be brushed out regularly in order to keep hair off the carpets and furniture if for no other reason.
Compared to most other breeds, Springadors are pure joy to train. They learn easily, obey promptly, and retain the knowledge of what they have learned once they have learned it.
In addition, their Labrador heritage makes them perfect candidates for specialized instruction in all manner of water-dependent tasks and environments. These were originally bred to retrieve excess fish that had fallen back into the sea. That heritage remains in the new hybrid offspring of the Labrador.
An especially critical aspect of owning one of these dogs is that they require above average amounts of daily exercise. The frolicsome nature of the Springer Spaniel is combined with the blue collar ethic of the hard-working fisherman’s friend. When coupled with the large size of the adult dog, this produces a requirement for plenty of exercise every day.
These are certainly not the best breed for living in small urbanized spaces. A large yard is almost a necessity. The breed also needs variety in their exercise in order to quench their atavistic urges to hunt and retrieve. Vigorous runs are better than mere walks. In either case, this should be combined with interludes of fetching.
Apart from the usual concerns of proper puppy food and early training, there are no particularly unique requirements to raising a Springador puppy.
Springadors and Children
Springadors usually prefer the company of adults over those of children, particularly small children. They can, however, be easily acclimated so long as they are taken in hand at an early stage of development. Introducing puppies to other family pets and small children should take place under observable circumstances until they accept that these are also members of the pack.
Dogs Similar To Springadors
There are a number of dog breeds that share both appearance and personality traits with the Springador.
Labrador Retriever: Short-haired Springadors look very similar to Labradors, particularly when chocolate or black in color. It has been remarked that even the long and curly-haired ones tend to share the build and many of the personal traits of a Labrador.
Springer Spaniel: The other parental stock can look very much like a long-haired Springador. It is, however, a medium-size rather than a large-size animal. Springers can be more frisky and perhaps even slightly frantic in comparison to the laid-back Labrador that comprises the other half of the mix. It would be a somewhat better choice for families with small children and other pets at home.
Spangold Retriever: With all the retriever hybrids that were created, it is no surprise that someone would hope to replicate the success of the Springador with another well-known retriever breed. The result of this Springer Spaniel and Golden Retriever mix is a slightly smaller hybrid that is superior with children and other house pets. Otherwise, they are very similar to the long-haired Springadors in terms of health, friendliness, and overall utility. Oddly enough, the predominate color of a Spangold is black, but they can also be found in tan, golden, or chocolate.
Popular Names For Springadors
Springador FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What Is A Springador?
The Springador is a hybrid cross between an English Springer Spaniel and a Labrador Retriever. They can have either the short utilitarian coat of the Labrador or the long, silky one of the Springer Spaniel. They primarily come in black, brown, chocolate, or gold for the main coat and can have white highlights on the body. These dogs are friendly, intelligent, hard-working, and not prone to the health and emotional problems often found in single breed populations.
Do Springadors Shed?
Yes. They are above average shedders and require routine brushing in all seasons.
Are Springadors Good Family Pets?
They can be, but they are naturally inclined to the company of adults. This does not mean that they are dangerous to children but merely that they need to be properly introduced. Other breeds are more playful and would thus perhaps be better matched for younger members of the family.
Do Springadors Get On With Cats?
Not particularly well. They can learn that the family cat is off-limits but might revert to their ancestral hunting instincts if left alone and untrained in proper family relationships. They are not notorious cat killers but merely less-suited to be around cats than other breeds.
How Much Do Springadors Cost To Own?
Springadors, unless found as rescue dogs, will run anywhere from 200-900 dollars per puppy. The annual cost of upkeep and food for this large-size hybrid is estimated to be about 1000-1100 dollars per year. Those costs include food, toys, grooming, professional instruction, and licensing where appropriate.
Are Springadors Good With Kids?
Springadors can be perfectly playful and friendly with anyone. They can be reserved towards those who abuse or tease them, however. This trait can sometimes be more pronounced in rescue dogs of this breed. Overall, they are fine family pets but not especially known as one of the top dog breeds for children.
How Long Do Springadors Live?
The natural lifespan of a Springador is expected to be 10-14 years.
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- dogtime.com, Available here: https://dogtime.com/dog-breeds/springador#/slide/1
- labradortrainingpot.com, Available here: https://www.labradortrainingspot.com/12-facts-about-labrador-retrievers/
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