Written and researched by Dale Merritt of Bearpoint Kennel and Black Forest Kennel:
The history of the Labrador Retriever can be traced back to the late 1700’s in Newfoundland. At that time there were two breeds, the Greater Newfoundland and the Lesser Newfoundland. These two breeds of Newfoundland’s were also known as the Greater and Lesser St. John’s dogs. The Greater Newfoundland was used primarily for draft work – working in a four-dog team, they would haul carts, including the driver, loaded with 200 to 300 pounds of fish. They were the larger of the two breeds and possessed a long thick coat.
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