Labradors live into their teens, whether yellow, chocolate or black. They are susceptible to a number of health issues from heart disease to types of dysplasia. Proper veterinary care can prevent or manage many of these issues. Yellow Labradors are good choices for breeds if longevity is a concern because they generally live longer than many other breeds.
Ideal yellow Labs have a gentle nature, extroverted and friendly. They are intelligent as well as adaptable. These temperament characteristics make Labradors popular as pets. Male and female yellow Labs are approximately 2 feet tall, with male Labs generally 1 inch or 2 inches taller. Male weights range from 65 to 80 pounds, while female weights range from 55 to 70 pounds. Ideally, the coats of Labradors feel stiff and dense with hair clipped short.
The average life span for a Labrador is approximately 13 years. Yellow Labradors take one year longer than most breeds to reach adulthood, doing so at 3 instead of 2. The average life span of dogs ranges from the bulldog at 6.7 years to the miniature poodle at 14.8 years. Compared to other breads the life span of the Labradors is long enough to be considered above average.
Many health problems in yellow Labradors are inherited. Labradors have been dying earlier due to increased cases of cancer. They also have a high association with epilepsy, osteoarthritis, hip and elbow dysplasia and other hip and joint conditions. Regarding diseases that will significantly reduce the longevity of a yellow Labrador, heart disease and diabetes are primary concerns. Yellow Labradors also suffer from muscular dystrophy, retinal dysplasia, cataracts and osteochondritis dissecans, or OCD, which corrodes bone beneath cartilage.
Possible diseases associated with Labradors should be screened for by veterinarians. Preventing disease through early detection is one of the key strategies toward increasing the longevity of a canine. About 30 percent of longevity is affected by genetics, while the majority at 70 percent is influenced primarily by the lifestyle of the canine. Most dogs are seniors at age 7. Antiaging medicine is available for canines that can improve their quality of life. In general a healthy diet and regular exercise, paired with social interaction, are what every canine requires to maximize its longevity. Organic diets can also further increase longevity and maintain youth.