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The Springador is a mixed dog the result of crossing a Labrador Retriever with an English Springer Spaniel. The Springador name is more often used in the UK for this cross breed whereas in the USA she is called a Labradinger or Labradinger Retriever. She has a life span of 10 to 14 years and is a large dog with several talents including tracking, obedience, agility, retrieving, hunting, jogging and narcotics detection. She is a very playful, loving and active dog.
|Here is the Springador at a Glance|
|Average height||18 to 24 inches|
|Average weight||50 to 90 pounds|
|Coat type||Medium, long, flat, shaggy, thick, wavy|
|Shedding||Moderate to high|
|Brushing||Daily or every other day|
|Tolerant to Solitude?||Moderate to goodlong|
|Tolerance to Heat||Good to very good|
|Tolerance to Cold||Very good|
|Good Family Pet?||Excellent|
|Good with Children?||Very good to excellent|
|Good with other Dogs?||Very good to excellent|
|Good with other Pets?||Good to very good|
|A roamer or Wanderer?||Above average|
|A Good Apartment Dweller?||Moderate|
|Good Pet for new Owner?||Very good to excellent|
|Trainability||Easy to train|
|Exercise Needs||Very high|
|Tendency to get Fat||Above average.|
|Major Health Concerns||OCD, eye problems, epilepsy, heart problems, bloat, Myopathy, PFK,|
|Other Health Concerns||Joint dysplasia, acute moist dermatitis, cold tail, ear infections, skin disorders|
|Life Span||10 to 14 years|
|Average new Puppy Price||$200 to $900|
|Average Annual Medical Expense||$485 to $600|
|Average Annual Non-Medical Expense||$1020 to $1100|
Where does the Springador come from?
Over the last three decades or so there has been a surge in the demand and breeding of so called designer dogs. These are mixed breeds being deliberately created usually using two purebreds and often given a blended name. The Springador is one of the more recent additions to this pool of dogs. Some designer dogs make sense, or have some thought behind them but a lot are just created to make money by bad breeders and puppy mills so take care where you buy from.
Despite what some breeders may promise there are no guarantees when it comes to the personality and looks of designer dogs. Even in the same litter there can be difference between the puppies. While the idea and the promise from some is to give you a puppy with the best of two purebreds in it, this cannot be controlled so sometimes things do not work out and can even be completely the opposite. With no history or origin story known about the Springador we can take a quick look at the purebred parents for an idea of what is going into the mix.
The Labrador Retriever
The Lab was bred to be an aide to fishermen pulling in lines, nets, retrieving fish and then being a good companion at the end of the day in the early 1700s in Canada. They were first named St John's dogs which is the capital of Newfoundland where they were from. They were only called Labs about one hundred years later in England having been brought back from Canada. They were used in England for hunting not fishing though. In Canada new breeding and tax regulations led to the breed disappearing but they continued to be very popular in England.
Today that great intelligence, trainability and work ethic still continues to be something the Lab is known for. He works in a large number of different areas including police work, military work, assistance, therapy, hunting to name a few. He is also a great companion for families. He is sweet, energetic, playful, eager to please and a dog you can trust to get along with anybody and any other animal. He does need a lot of exercise though so needs owners who can commit to that.
The English Springer Spaniel
Spaniels are believed to originate from Spain hundreds of years ago and arrived in other parts of the world thanks to the Romans or trading. English Springer Spaniel ancestors can be found in paintings dating to the 1600s. They were bred and used to help when hunting small game and birds. In the 19th century they were classified not according to breed but according to how they were used for hunting. Smaller dogs were used for woodcock so were called Cocker spaniels and larger ones were used to spring game out of hiding so called Springers. In the early 20th century the Springer came to Canada and America and eventually there became two types, field bred and show bred.
He is a popular dog usually friendly and easy to train because he is so keen to please. There have been problems with some lines becoming more aggressive or timid and having separation anxiety though. This is as a result of poor breeding. When bred properly he is energetic, obedient, good with children with some socialization but may tend to hunt smaller animals in the yard and chase smaller pets.
The Springador or Labradinger is a great working dog and family dog. She works well in the police force, military, as a therapy dog and as a hunting dog but she is also a wonderful companion eager to please, friendly, playful and very active. She can be alert and intelligent but does need early socialization to keep her behaving at her best. She can act out when left alone for long periods of time. When at her best she is excellent with everyone including children and other dogs and animals. She does needs to be kept busy though so is not best suited to someone who wants a more relaxed lifestyle. She can be gentle, happy, enthusiastic and lively.
What does the Springador look like
She is a large dog weighing 50 to 90 pounds and standing 18 to 24 inches tall. She has long ears, a well proportioned body, a head like the Springer's, feathered legs, ears and bellies and a double coat. The under is dense and soft and the outer can be straight to wavy or shaggy. Common colors are yellow, black, browns and golden.
Training and Exercise Needs
How active does the Springador need to be?
She is a very active dog so needs a lot of exercise each day if she is not acting as a working dog. A couple of long walks or runs plus some vigorous play is good. She is not best suited to apartment living because of her activity needs. She should have access to some kind of yard or outside land to romp around on. She loves the water, to retrieve things, trips to the dog park and so on. She should also have enough mental stimulation. The Springador really needs an owner who already loves to be active and is happy to include her in that.
Does she train quickly?
She is intelligent, eager to please and loves being challenged and active so usually she enjoys training and excels at it too. She should learn quickly needing less repetition as long as you are firm and consistent with your methods. Early socialization and training are very important to get the best she can be. It will also help tame the tendency to see other animals and smaller pets as prey to chase and hunt. Use treats, rewards and praise to encourage her and always be patient and positive. Harsh tones and punishments are not the way to approach training with her.
Living with a Springador
How much grooming is needed?
She does shed and that shedding can worsen when the seasonal shedding hits so be prepared to have to brush regularly to keep her coat looking healthy, and to vacuum up after her. She should be given a bath when she really needs it and be sure to take care of her ears. Check them once a week for infection and wipe them clean, and make sure they are dried after bathing or swimming. She will need regular trimming at a groomers as her coat does get long. Her nails will also need to be clipped when they get too long. Finally her teeth should be brushed at least three times a week.
What is she like with children and other animals?
She is very good with children and other dogs but she does have a hunting instinct so early socialization really helps in taming her instinct to chase after other pets. Being raised with them can help too. She loves to play with children, is affectionate and gentle with them though smaller kids should be supervised just in case they get knocked over. Children should be taught too how to approach and touch dogs in a the right way.
She is alert and makes a good watchdog. She should be fed 3 to 4 cups of high quality dry dog food a day that is split into at least two meals. She will bark occasionally and is good in most climates apart from the very extremes.
There are health concerns a Springador can inherit from the parents such as OCD, eye problems, epilepsy, heart problems, bloat, Myopathy, PFK, Joint dysplasia, acute moist dermatitis, cold tail, ear infections and skin disorders. Get health clearances shown to you for both parents to mitigate the risks and visiting the puppy before purchasing can save some troubles later on as you get to see the conditions she is kept in.
Costs involved in owning a Springador
A Springador puppy could cost between $200 to $900. Other costs include a crate for her, collar and leash, spaying, micro chipping, blood tests, deworming and shots. These come to $450 to $500. Some of those costs though may be included with the puppy's price. Annual costs to be ready for are basic medical concerns like pet insurance, vaccinations, flea prevention and check ups coming to between $485 to $600. Non-medical basics like grooming, food, license, training, treats and toys come to between $1020 to $1100.
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She is an intelligent, playful and loving dog who is great as either a working dog or a companion. She is loved by everyone and is great with children though needs helps with other pets. The Springador though is a very active dog and needs a family who is active right along with her.