|Breeding and interbreeding
In our database I found 480
unregistered Labrador retrievers, born in the U.K. between 1897 and 1962.
Further more I found 21
interbred or fullbred Flatcoats or Chesapeake Bay retrievers in our Labrador
retriever database, all born in the U.K. between 1914 and 1933.
It is well known that even
in the 1980s Golden retrievers were used to improve the coats of yellow
Labradors, and we also know that the Kennel Club hasn't been informed about
There are a lot of missing
links in our database, and sometimes the reasons for this are rather obvious.
Of all the 21 interbred or fullbred Flatcoats or Chesapeake Bay retrievers,
most of them being Field Trial champions, we could only track the ancestors
for more than two generations of two dogs. The information about the ancestors
of the other 19 interbred dogs was simply removed from the files in the
1930s. It seems that some well known Labrador breeders didn't want the
public to know that their succesful dogs were partly the offspring of interbred
Two well known Chesapeake
Bay retrievers were a dog called Jolly, who sired the male Labrador retriever
Jolly Sam, born before 1933, and the bitch Corydalys, who was the dam of
the female Labrador retriever Micklefield Juno, born before 1925. Clyde,
born before 1923, was the "liver" (chocolate) Flatcoat retriever who sired
the male yellow Labrador FTW Folkingham Bexter (1925), who in turn sired
the yellow bitch FTW Limekiln Rhoda (1927). She and the yellow dog FTW
Golden Morn (1926) had a litter that was registered as "half Golden Retriever
and half Labradors". The separation was by coat length, because all puppies
were yellow. Apparently the third generation showed some traits of the
original breed involved.
Chesapeake Bay retriever
Male champion Chesapeake
Three male Chesapeake Bay
Old female Chesapeake Bay
Some of us who are breeders
of Labrador retrievers won't find any difficulties to recognise characteristics
of the Chessies above in many of our chocolate Labs.
the depletion of breeding stock, especially after the second World War,
Flatcoats and Labradors were widely interbred to broaden the gene pool
and increase the number of dogs to a safer level. For example, the Labrador
CH. Horton Max, a well-regarded Labrador at the turn of the century was
actually an interbred, sired by the influential CH. Darenth, a Flatcoat,
while Horton Max's son Maxim's dam Horton Flo was also an interbred; her
sire was the Flatcoat Horton Viceroy, born before 1912. For some
reason, while those breeders in Flatcoats are aware of this mixing, many
Labrador breeders are not.
Another famous Flatcoat (called
wavycoated in those days) who influenced the Labrador retriever was the
bitch Stoneleigh Quality. She and the Labrador Brayton Swift were the parents
of the Labrador bitch Fairgirth Bell, born before 1917.
Despite the widespread removal
of the descendants of interbred dogs from the database, are we still able
to track some of them down? Yes we are.
At the very bottom of this
6-generation pedigree of the famous Holton Baron, we find a black bitch
called Kwa. She was born before 1933.
On the top of this pedigree
we find the interbred dog called Shine, born before 1918. Shine's sire
was the Labrador Start and his dam was the interbred Mat, born before 1916.
Now let's take a look at
The blood of the interbred
Stourhead Gilda, born before 1924, can be found in many American lines.
On the bottom of Hiwood Mike's
6 generation pedigree we find Cariboo of Langbourne, actually born before
1926. He was the son of Stourhead Gilda.
Hiwood Mike, in turn, sired
Little Pierre of Deer Creek, who sired Coastal Charger of Deer Creek, who
sired Cork of Oakwood Lane. Cork of Oakwood Lane sired a lot of famous
dogs. To name a few: Del Tone Colvin, Marten's Black Badger, Marten's High
Style Buck, Bay City Katie Jane, Jet Black Of Del Tone, Whygin Cork's Coot,
Ace Hi Royal Flush, and Ace Hi Crusader. They produced many present-day
So Labrador breeders have
nothing to be ashamed of. They did well. When I look at my labs, blacks,
yellows and chocs, I'm sure I see some characteristics of Flatcoats, Goldens
and Chessies. And all I can do is thank the breeders who had the wisdom
to cross these breeds into their lines.