Saturday, November 12, 2011

Do or Don’t: Table Scraps For Fido?

Ah, the holidays. It’s that time of year when friends and family gather around the table to enjoy good food and good company. It can also be a time when your pooch gets to indulge in a few extra table scraps. No one loves holiday food more than Fido. But is it okay to share what’s on your plate with your canine companion? And is there such thing as too much or just enough? Here are a few tips on how to share a tidbit here and there without endangering your pooch’s health.

‘Tis the season for overindulgence.

From Thanksgiving to New Year's, the holidays mean lots of foods high in fat, sugar and salt. Often what doesn’t get finished at the table goes into Fido’s bowl. It’s important to remember that when you give your dog a treat from your plate, you’re adding to his caloric intake. Trouble is, Fido doesn’t need a lot of extra calories. According to the ASPCA, overweight pets are at a higher risk of diabetes, liver problems and joint pain. By giving Fido that piece of pie or serving of stuffing, you’re doing more than showing him your love—you could be hurting his health.

Aim for a balanced diet.

Keep in mind that if you feed your pooch a complete, balanced commercial diet, adding anything that isn’t complete and balanced can throw his nutrition out of whack. So, as a general rule, you shouldn’t feed Fido table scraps. If you’re set on giving your dog treats or people food outside his normal diet, be sure that his treats make up less than 10% of his total caloric intake each day. Remember a little goes a long way.

Make no bones about it.

Many families eat turkey, ham and roast beef during the holidays. If your family does, you may be tempted to give Fido a bone or two to gnaw on. In almost every case, the bones are too small, sharp, and brittle for your dog to chew on safely. Sharp bones can cause intestinal issues, which can turn a fun holiday treat into an expensive trip to the vet. A raw bone is the best.  When it gets to be too small discard it...all bones are under your supervision for this reason.  Susana Labradors likes to feed bones in crates.  It gives them something to do, takes the stress off of being in the crate, and prevents other canine friends from food stealing, and sniggering over a bone.

Limit daily treats.

Guests and kids love giving the family pet or your yellow Labrador puppy a treat. The trick is to supply the right kind of treats, so that they can feel like they’re giving your dog love and you can avoid looking like the bad guy. You can provide your guests with healthy dog bones or cookies of which you would prefer them to have.  This makes you look like a good guy, while providing your fox red or black Labrador puppy something you actually want them to have.  Or, when it’s not a great time for a treat, you can also suggest that Fido would love a game like fetch instead.

Find the right foods.

Maybe sweet potato casserole and pecan pie aren’t great choices for your pooch. But what about a bit of lean turkey? Or some cooked peas or other vegetables? Dogs love baby carrots, celery and even bits of vegetables you wouldn’t think they’d like. There are also some foods that can be toxic for Fido, including anything containing chocolate or macadamia nuts. So it’s important to be careful. Be sure anything you or your guests feed your beloved Susana  Labrador is healthy, low calorie, low sodium and low fat so he can enjoy many years of long life with you.

  • Chocolate
  • Coffee
  • Alcohol
  • Grapes or Raisins
  • Uncooked Meat or Eggs
  • Bones
  • Onions, Garlic or Chives
  • Milk
  • Salt

10 Pet Safety Tips for the Holidays

When celebrating the winter festivities, don't forget to keep holiday pet dangers in mind. It may require some changes to your normal decorating or dining routine, but these tips we at Susana Labradors found can help you create a pet-safe holiday that is safe for your Labrador retriever puppy wheatear you have a fox red Labrador puppies or a yellow Labrador puppy from us, no matter what gender or color let's keep them safe and also have fun for the whole family.

1.     Practice fire safety. Nothing looks nicer than a Thanksgiving table aglow with candles. But be sure to never leave any fire unattended particularly when you have pets in the house. Not only can curious whiskers get burned, if a candle is knocked over by a wagging tail, it can lead to a serious fire.

2.     Hoard the people food. Although it’s tempting to give your pets a taste or two from your Thanksgiving plate, too much human food can be bad for your pet’s health. For more about what people food to share and not to share over the holidays,

3.     Hide the breakables. Holiday feasts can mean bringing out treasured items like Great Aunt Mae’s fine china or your finest stemware. Just remember that your beloved pets don’t know the value of these items, and they could get broken. So if you have favorite, breakable decorations or table settings, be sure to keep them out of reach.

4.     Watch out for toxic plants. Many holiday plants, including mistletoe, holly, poinsettia, and even that beautiful Thanksgiving centerpiece of lilies can be toxic to pets. If you must decorate with these holiday pet dangers, keep them well away from curious paws and mouths.

5.     A toast to everyone’s health. When you raise that glass of holiday bubbly, be sure to place your unattended alcoholic drinks where Fluffy or Fido can’t sneak a taste. Alcohol and pets simply don’t mix. If ingested, your pet could become weak, ill, go into a coma or worse.

6.     How sweet it isn’t. Although many people like to leave out chocolates for visitors throughout the holidays, it’s important to remember that these sweets are major pet dangers. Chocolate is tasty for you, but it’s toxic for Fluffy and Fido.

7.     Keep the lights high. Many people enjoy decorating with strings of lights during the holidays, but do so with caution. Twinkling lights make a shiny toy, but they’re not safe to play with or chew on. Keep your celebrations shock-free by hanging lights up high.

8.     Don’t decorate with food. Strings of cranberries and popcorn can be a beautiful way to liven up your household, and a fun project to do with your kids, but they’re holiday hazards for pets. Even if the food on the string isn’t toxic for Fido or Fluffy, they may end up eating the string—and that can cause serious health problems.

9.     Steer clear of tinsel town. Tinsel is more than just a glittery decoration. If your pets eat it, it can cause intestinal problems that require a trip to the veterinarian.
Wrap it up. If you like to display your holiday presents, watch out for ribbons, bells, and other small toys that can present a choking hazard for your pet. If there are any dangerous-looking gifts, it may be a good idea to hide them safely in a closet until it’s time to open them—or open them right away. After all, no one can accuse you of being rude if you’re doing it to have a pet-safe holiday.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Taking your Adult Dog to the Veterinarian

Taking your mature adult dog to the veterinarian

A trip to see the veterinarian can be a stressful experience for your dog. There are lots of sights, smells, sounds, people and animals that may be new and unfamiliar. There are a number of things you can do to make sure you and your dog have a comfortable and productive visit:

·         Take your dog for a walk prior to your visit. This will make your dog calmer and more docile while also making an accident less likely.

·         Use a carrier. This is a good option if your dog is small enough because it prevents biting, scratching and attempts at running away. It will also protect your dog from other pets at the veterinary clinic.

·         Take control in the waiting room. Keep your dog relaxed by giving lots of physical attention and talking softly.

·         Aid in the exam room. Vets and vet technicians are very experienced at holding nervous and frightened animals, but your familiar face and smell will comfort your dog while in the exam room.

·         Plan for extra time. If you would like extra time to talk to your vet about your dog, be sure to schedule it when you make your appointment or try to avoid peak hours. Veterinary clinics are usually busiest in the early morning or the early evening.

·         Visit frequently. Regular check-ups will help your dog get used to the experience of going to the vet, and help the vet become more familiar with your dog.

·         We at Susana Labradors try and pray we don’t have to visit the vet’s office often with our Labrador puppies or Labrador young adults, but when we do, we found these tips helpful.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Pet-Safe Household Cleaning Products: How to Clean When You Have Pets

A number of common household cleaning products are toxic to pets or, at the very least, can irritate their skin and respiratory system. Luckily, most pet stores and online pet retailers are savvy about carrying pet-safe cleaning products. Keeping pet-safe cleaning products on hand is great for those quick clean ups, but there are also some very common household items that are effective and great for pet-safe cleaning. Here are some of the best that we at Susana Labradors like to use around our Labrador retriever puppies. Enjoy!:

1. Alcohol: Isopropyl alcohol is a great disinfectant and nontoxic once it dries. Dilute alcohol to remove dirt and stains from surfaces like countertops or the floor. A full concentration of rubbing alcohol may hurt your pet when not dry, so as a rule of thumb, dilute ¼ cup rubbing alcohol with 1 gallon hot water.

2. Baking soda: This inexpensive product is a great substitute for scouring cleansers. Use it to scrub the tub, sink, and even the kitchen floors. As an added bonus, it deodorizes as it cleans. Sprinkle it into your carpets to remove pet odors; it’s even safe to use on upholstery! It can also replace your toxic metal polishes or be used to scrub out the litter box.

3. Borax: This product is found in the laundry aisle. Use as directed with your usual laundry detergent to get your clothes and pet bedding really clean in the washing machine. It can also be used to scrub the tub and tiles in your bathroom, and even kills fleas! Borax is a naturally-occurring mineral made of very sharp granules. Sprinkle some into your carpet, rub it in with a broom and then just vacuum it up.

4. Drain cleaner: Commercial drain cleaners are incredibly toxic. For a natural alternative, pour half a cup of baking soda and half a cup of white vinegar down the drain, and then cover it with a dinner plate. After half an hour, run hot water to see if the clog has dispersed. If not, try again, and then use a plunger. If that still doesn’t work, use a commercial drain cleaner or call a plumber. Do not, under any circumstances, try the natural method after using a commercial cleaner. The resulting fumes can be toxic.

5. Cornstarch: Cornstarch does a great job of cleaning rugs, windows, and even polishing some metals.


Mineral oil: Replace your toxic wood polish with mineral oil. Add a teaspoon of lemon juice for a fresh smell. Mineral oil is flammable, so keep it away from open flames.

7. Potpourri: Some store-bought potpourris contain chemicals that are harmful to pets, as do all scented candles and air-freshener sprays and plug-ins. Instead, put cinnamon sticks and cloves or cinnamon tea (don’t forget to add water!) on the stove over low heat for about half an hour. Only do this while you’re home – don’t forget and leave the house with the stove on.

8. Salt: Use coarse salt as a scouring powder.

9. Steam: There are quite a few handheld steam cleaners on the market today, and since they use only heat and water to clean and disinfect, the result is completely pet-safe.

10. Steel wool: Plain steel wool and a little elbow grease will clean food that's stuck on pots and pans.

11. Vinegar: A vinegar/water solution is great for cleaning the bathroom, kitchen, and windows. It will also clean rust stains.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Pet’s Lost and Found in Real Life

“Have you ever lost and found your pet? Where was the little guy hiding out?”

We asked our PetRescuers Facebook community from the more popular microchip manufactures and here is what they said.,. Stories of families reunited with their beloved pets poured in from coast to coast of families reunited with their beloved pets. Some reunions came after years apart and hundreds of miles of separation. Here are just a few of the uplifting stories we’ve received:

Six Years Later

“On Memorial Day weekend in 2005, some fireworks scared our little dog Stinky away from where we were staying. We did everything we could think of to find her—called local shelters, hung posters—but nothing worked. Over the next six years, I never gave up hope. Then in May, 2011, I got a call from animal control. Unbelievably, they’d found Stinky and contacted us through HomeAgain. Never give up!” -- Amy

A Real Scare on Halloween

“Right before Halloween 2010, we lost our beloved cat Squeaky. Our children made lost posters and searched the neighborhood with no luck. After seven months lost, the local shelter found her and tracked her to us through her microchip. I’m a true believer in the microchip now.” --

Stolen—and Recovered

“Over two years ago, the unthinkable happened—my Chihuahua, Pinto, was stolen. I cried day and night, and eventually gave up hope of finding her. Then one day I got a call from the chip company and she had been found over 100 miles away! Getting Pinto back was the best day of my life.” -- Marrissa

One Mile Away and Completely Lost

“One night during a horrible snow storm, our 10-year-old German Shepherd got lost. He was gone for over a week. My husband put flyers in all the neighbors’ mailboxes. It ends up, our dog was only a mile away, but he couldn’t find his way home in all the snow. If it wasn’t for my husband and having the implant I don’t know how I would have found him.” –Robbii M. (Facebook PetRescuer)

Looking for Mom

“While I was stationed in Iraq, I called home and found out my dog had run away over a week before. Some kids found her seven miles from home and took her to the Emergency Room. The ER scanned her microchip and got her home safe. I think she was looking for her Mama, poor girl.” –Toni D. (Facebook PetRescuer)

Susana Labradors real life stories as told by 2 of my puppy clients

After getting a yellow Labrador puppies from Susana Labradors, I had Bucky outside while the phone rang.  I should have let it go to the machine, but instead I ran inside leaving Bucky out front to do his business.  When I returned a minute later, Bucky was gone.  So of course I combed the neighborhood looking for my tiny 8 week old puppy to no avail.  An hour later, the phone rang and to my surprise, a woman going to work spotted my puppy, took her in her car with her as she made her way to work which was 60 miles from my house.  She pooped into a local vet and admitted “I found this puppy, and if it doesn’t belong to anyone, I want to keep him” Well, luckily we had Susana Labradors chip him, and once scanned I was notified to pick up my puppy.  Thank goodness for the chip..or some woman would be walking my precious Bucky.

While I loved my white Labrador puppy that I got from Susana Labs, she was a crafty one.  She figured out how to get out of my back gate while I was away.  3 months later after I contacted Susana Labradors and bought a second puppy assuming Sadie was gone forever…the phone rang…I guess crafty Sadie figured out how to escape her new owners place too.  She is back in my arms thanks to the recovery chip, and by the way, Sasha and Sadie are the best of friends!

Almost Half of You Have Lost Pets

Every year, as many as 10 million pets are reported lost. It can happen to anyone. In our recent Facebook poll, 49% of our PetRescuer community told us they’d lost a pet once, and 15% said they’d lost a pet more than once.

Why do pets run away? Animals are highly curious by nature, so exploring and chasing objects is instinctual. They are hard-wired with a desire to find out what lies beyond their territory. Often, their sense of smell can get them into all kinds of trouble—whether they smell food or other animals. Just the scent of another dog or cat can lure your pet away. The good news is spaying and neutering can reduce this likelihood by as much as 90%.

If your pet gets lost, stay calm and start looking immediately in your area. In many cases, your pet won't have gotten far by the time you realize they're missing. The majority of our Facebook responders said they'd found their pets inside their own homes—in a drawer, the pantry, the garage or under furniture.

Most dogs are recovered within a two-mile radius of their home. They normally wouldn't run in a straight line for an extended distance, no matter how strong or fast they are. Small dogs may be able to go half a mile at most. Friendly pets typically find people or other pets to play with—so look for them in public parks or neighbors’ yards. If your pet is shy, you may find them hiding under bushes and parked cars.
Most importantly, if Fido or Fluffy get lost, don’t give up hope. When pets have been microchippped and your contact info is kept up-to-date, there’s always a way to track him or her back to you; As these lost pet stories prove—even over several years and from hundreds of miles away.

Rescuing a Lost Pet

We all know losing our own pets would be heartbreaking. But what if you see a stray dog or cat that you suspect is lost? Most strays have a home—usually a good, loving home—but somehow got away. Many animal lovers have a hard time passing a pet that seems alone without at least wondering where he or she belongs. If you’re one of those people, here are a few tips to help get Rover or Fluffy back home:

  1. Determine that the pet is really lost. Is he or she walking down the street with purpose? Does the pet look street savvy? If you’re in a rural area, the animal may just be headed home.
  2. Look for signs he’s not a stray. True strays may look confused and scared and be dirty, thin, or haggard. Lost pets, on the other hand, will probably look well fed and groomed, and have a friendlier disposition.
  3. Get the pet’s attention. In order not to startle him, make a soft clucking noise with your tongue or call him gently to you. Does he have a collar with ID tags? If so, you’ve got a great shot at finding the owners right away. If not, he may have been microchipped, so take him to your local shelter or vet so that they can scan him. You don’t have to relinquish the pet to the shelter—you’re just trying to find his or her owners.
  4. Offer treats. Some lost pets may come to you and then shy away when you reach for them. It’s helpful to have treats or food with you. Toss the food gently to one side of the animal, not directly at him.
  5. Never corner a fearful animal. Be careful if a dog bears his teeth, growls, or snaps at you, or if a cat arches and hisses. It’s a good idea to leave aggressive pets alone and call animal control.
  6. Find a leash or crate. If the animal doesn’t have a collar, you can use a belt or tie as a makeshift collar and leash so that you can control him. In many instances, the best way of capturing a stray cat is with a humane baited crate, which you can get at a feed store or hardware store.
  7. Protect your passenger. Often, a pet will come if you open your car door and call him or her. If you can get a lost dog or cat into your car, crate him. If you don’t have a crate, try to secure him in the backseat. You don’t want a fearful animal jumping into your lap as you drive.
  8. Proceed with caution. If you take a pet home, remember that you don’t know this animal and that he may be unpredictable. Don’t corner him, leave him alone with children, or try to take food or treats away from him.
  9. Get the word out. If the animal doesn’t have ID or a microchip, post brightly colored FOUND DOG or FOUND CAT posters at busy intersections in the neighborhood where the pet was found. Don’t include too much information about the animal just in case a scammer contacts you.
  10. Next steps. If you’ve managed to catch a friendly dog or cat, make every attempt to find his owner. Call local shelters, get the animal scanned for a microchip, and check local classifieds for lost pet ads. Remember, there is a possibility that the dog or cat was dumped and now you’re his owner. Perhaps you’ll want to keep Rover or Fluffy if every attempt to find his owners has failed.

This article was written by someone else other than us at Susana Labradors.  However, I thought it was worth the read.  You know, from time to time we may see a lost Labrador wandering around the street.  The last one I saw was a yellow Labrador adult male dog.  We managed to get him to come towards us, and immediately collared him and put an appropriate sized dog chain around our mail box, so he couldn’t wander.  This gave him a little room to get up and turn around but it secured him . We gave him food and water and sat with him for a while.  As darkness approached, we left him to sit there on a blanket by our mailbox.  Sure enough, his rightful owners came driving by looking for him and claimed him.  They left me a Thank you note in the mailbox, with their name and address.

About a week later I was crossing the street and saw a few cop cars and a civilian car pulled over next to the busy street where we live off of.  Apparently this same dog got out and this time was unfortunately, hit by a car.  Out of curiosity, I made my way through the crowd and recognized the dog.  I alerted the officer, that I knew where the owners lived.  I ran home and grabbed their business card they had left me and my work for the day was done.

I don’t know the outcome of this poor dog that kept breaking out of their gate, if he lived or died.  But without dog collars for Identification, or a microchip implant, it is a big mystery as to how to get these dogs home.  Luckily for him I was there.  The odd thing is that I rarely get opportunity to leave my ranch, as I am kept so busy raising and training our Labrador’s here.  I just happened to be out on foot that day and it was as if I was supposed to be there right at that time for the livelihood of this poor dog.  Otherwise, no one would have known where this dog lived and the owners may not have checked the veterinarian’s offices.

Before we let one of our precious yellow Labrador puppies go to a new owner, I always ask “how will my puppy be living”?  Just to make sure that they have proper gating and fencing.  Most people who buy our Labrador puppy’s will love them and care for them, but it is a constant caring as they grow and change and develop personality’s.  Some dogs can be jumpers or diggers left alone to their own accord and tragedies can happen with a dog that is bored. 

So keep an eye on your dog, be sure it is safe for him if you leave your property.  We suggest a commercial kennel or run that is puppy/dog safe for him to live in while you are away. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

Helping Your Dog Cope with Loud Thunder and Fireworks

Fear of loud noises, especially thunder and fireworks, is a common phobia in dogs. It’s usually displayed by hiding, whining, barking, pawing or even urination. Trying to help your dog cope with loud noises is important because the anxiety usually gets progressively more pronounced with age. A dog suffering from a fear of thunderstorms may begin to display anxious behavior before the thunder begins. Rain on the roof of the house, bright flashes of light or even the drop in air pressure before a storm may be enough to trigger anxiety. It is important not to punish your dog for being anxious, but equally important not to cuddle too much.

·         Punishing your dog will just create more fear and anxiety because thunder will then be associated with both fear and punishment

·         Cuddling or comforting your dog too much isn’t a good idea because it teaches your dog that anxious behavior is appropriate

Instead, first provide your dog with a safe place to seek refuge. Dog crates, under a bed or under a chair are common hiding places for a dog. Your dog chooses these places because she feels protected and the noise of thunder or fireworks is muffled. If your dog has not already picked out a place, provide one. Try leaving a few treats or a real beef bone in a safe place to encourage your dog to go there.

Try desensitizing your dog to loud noises so the sound becomes normal. This is usually done by playing recorded thunder at a low volume and in short intervals while you monitor your dog’s behavior. Try to distract your dog while the noise is present by playing fetch or engaging in some sort of enjoyable activity. If your dog is too frightened to participate, you need to turn down the intensity of your thunder stimulus and try again later. This process is long and requires patience, but in the end your dog will be much more comfortable during a storm.

For help with further treating your dog’s anxiety, seek advice from your veterinarian.

Angel, our beloved yellow Labrador, our first lab who is about age 14 now is so afraid of the fireworks that I just put her in my bedroom and close the door and make it really nice and dark for her.  It is a cool spot and we have a doggie bed in there, which she can lay on.  I check on her constantly throughout the night on the 4th of July.

Sometimes, I will put a scarred dog inside the house and put her safely in a crate. Cover it with a big beach towel. Put a soft radio on next to the crate.  A bone inside helps. 

If your dog is not secure inside, the noise outside is so intense, that the dogs can hurt themselves trying to get away from the intense sound.

We have seen it over the years..many accidents happen and dogs can break out, get loose in the street and be lost or injured.

If you have a scarred dog, it is best to stay home on those evenings, or have someone come in..perhaps consider the crate idea.

Rescue Remedy is a natural soothing remedy made up of flowers and herbs, and the dogs don’t mind the taste.  I give this often as it takes the edge off.

This can be purchased here at Susana Labradors, or at a health food store.  This is what we do for our yellow Labrador puppys in training or raising at our ranch.  It is natural, and seems to help quite a bit.
Maybe for extreme cases or a mature dog, seeing the vet with your concerns may be the best measure.  He may be able to get you some doggie downers to help with the stress of  holiday fireworks.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia is most likely found in most large breed dogs. Mainly Labrador Retriever Puppies. It affects their hips and elbows, in regards to their development. It is seen in some cases as being mild and of course the variance can be severe. It can cause pain for the dog and be debilitating in later years. A lot of Labrador Breeders and scientists don’t fully understand the cause of this of this deformity, but what they think is that it is a multi-gene phenomenon of which 50% is congenial and the other 50% is environmental. (The way you take care of your Labrador Puppy) When a Labrador is a puppy it needs to be taken care of in non aggressive style. Easy gentle play while the pup is developing, no hard walking or active jumping, simple ball playing in the yard or with another puppy while the hip joints are forming is enough until the dog is mature and fully reaches his developmental potential as being fully developed and formed. This is usually at 18 months of age.
You must make sure your puppy is getting the right nutrition to have healthy hips. To see our nutrition page click this link
There really isn’t a way to check a new puppy under the age of one year old. WE can’t predict if or when the deformity will strike as there are many factors to consider in the way of raising and food abundance, weight bearing on the hip joints and mal nutrition. But there are some noticeable signs of suspecting Hip Dysplasia on your Labrador.
Here are some tell-tale signs:
• Stiffness or soreness when walking.
• No motivation to move or jump.
• Look for dislocation of the hip on both sides of the Labrador.
• Has trouble trying to get up from a lay-down position.
• Has trouble trying to walk up or down stairs.
• Obvious signs of being in pain: YELPING, OR GRUNTING.
A good breeder with a conscious is aiming to produce better puppies not just more of them.
Checking and certifying the hips and elbows with the OFA before entering into a breeding program to screen out potential hip and elbow problems.
Other helpful tasks your breeder can do to benefit the life style of the puppies in the early stages is:

Rule-of-7 and Early Neurological Stimulation Exercises which can be viewed at: and the breeder should practice these exercises every day for the first 2 weeks of your new born puppy beginning at 3 days old. Other causes that are known for this deformity would be diet, and being over-weight. You
There is really only one way to check if your Labrador has Hip Dysplasia; taking your lab to a vet and get x-rays. Unfortunately, there is no cure for Hip Dysplasia. But there are treatments to prevent it from getting worse and reduce the pain of the Hip Dysplasia. Some treatments include getting medication for your lab, or getting surgery.

The Labrador Retriever

The Labrador retriever: (or otherwise known as Labs) are one of the most popular breeds in the world. The reason why the Labrador retriever breed is so popular is because Labradors have been used for hundreds of years as catching and retrieving (which is where their name comes from)

The dogs of the Labrador breed are very kind, playful, obedient to their master, and most importantly are very safe around babies as well. For many years the Labrador breed has been used as an assistance dog for the blind, or anyone one that just needs a dog by their side, whatever the case may be, the Labrador breed of dogs is the perfect choice of dog for anyone.

The Labrador Appearance:
Size and Weight: Labrador adults can grow pretty large, the average weight for studs is around 65-90 pounds and the average weight for bitches is around 55–71 pounds. If a Labrador is 100 pounds or over, that means that it’s obese and the owner should cut down on how he or she feeds the lab. Labradors are known for their appetite and they absolutely love to eat.
Body: A Labrador retriever’s body should be muscular and a level top line.
Coat: Labradors have a very unique coat of fur. The Labrador is known for its short and thick hair, usually the colors of Labradors is all one solid color and doesn’t have spots of different colors. Colors: Fox Red, Black, White, Cream White, Yellow, and Chocolate Brown.
Head Size and Shape: The size and shape should be blocky and thick, with a pronounced stop and a slight pronounced brow.

Why Pick A Susana Labrador?

1. All our breeding dogs are hip x-rayed
2 Pups come with a written 1 and conditional 2 year guarantee – We stand behind all of our pups
3. We are supported by the AKC (American Kennel Club) and they do random inspections of our dogs and kennel; all pups are AKC registered
4. We do not in-breed; all our breeding dogs are line bred giving us the heads we like and the quality of dogs we breed.
5. Pups do not have dew claws removed. This can be dangerous to young 3 day old pups; and the English are not clipping anything off the dogs right now.
6. All pups go home with a manicure, Pedicure and a nice bath
7. For your convince, we are located in town; Simi Valley
8. All our dogs are either champion sired or come from reputable champion breeding bloodlines on both sides
9. We show our dogs and have 12 champions so far- thus, you are not supporting a puppy mill; we breed with integrity
10. All dogs and pups have AKC paperwork available when you pick up your puppy from us
11. All pups leave with current shots and have been wormed completely, and treated for parasites
12. All our males have DNA on profile with the AKC
13. We welcome anyone who would like to meet us and meet our dogs
14. Our dogs are clean and healthy and are also our pets; they are well trained and cared for and invited to come inside our home
15. Our kennel is neat and clean and sanitary, I employ a great staff who participate in animal health care to care for the pups and big dogs we have here.
16. We offer puppy starter kits with vitamins, cleansers, grooming products, crates, and a caring & training booklet, DVD’s and informational books on the breed
17. We offer potty, crate and obedience training,& boarding of your puppy while you are on your family vacation. We are full service. And very good at what we do
18. Providing you have e-mail, you will be receiving our quarterly newsletter’s packed with doggy do’s and don’ts and to update you on the latest upcoming information on our kennel and tips for your new puppy, along with weekly photos and updates, while your puppy develops
19. We offer a training tape DVD that covers most commonly asked questions on the caring and training of our pups- we make shopping easy and complete, and an educational experience
20. We are friendly, and helpful, professional, and encourage you to email us or call us for anything at anytime.
21. We have a great reputation; we offer a list of references, and are recommended by 6 vets in Southern California; references available upon request; we are experienced breeders, and have been breeding 10 years now.
22. You can become a fan of Susana Labradors; by going to our home page and exchange pup photos with other happy puppy owners.

Elbow Dysplasia

The following info was found at the Orthopedic Foundation For Animals (OFA) website:
Elbow dysplasia is a general term used to identify an inherited polygenic disease in the elbow of dogs. Three specific etiologies make up this disease and they can occur independently or in conjunction with one another. These etiologies include:
Pathology involving the medial coronoid of the ulna (FCP) Osteochondritis of the medial humeral condyle in the elbow joint (OCD) Ununited anconeal process (UAP) Studies have shown the inherited polygenic traits causing these etiologies are independent of one another. Clinical signs involve lameness which may remain subtle for long periods of time. No one can predict at what age lameness will occur in a dog due to a large number of genetic and environmental factors such as degree of severity of changes, rate of weight gain, amount of exercise, etc. Subtle changes in gait may be characterized by excessive inward deviation of the paw which raises the outside of the paw so that it receives less weight and distributes more mechanical weight on the outside (lateral) aspect of the elbow joint away from the lesions located on the inside of the joint. Range of motion in the elbow is also decreased.

Foods to keep away from dogs

Here at Susana Labradors and others that live with animals know that you should not give your dogs chocolate, but there are also other foods that dogs should not have. Many of us assume that vegetables, fruits and other edibles are not bad for our dogs but they can be very dangerous, and even deadly, to our dogs. Raisins and grapes can cause kidney failure in dogs so it is important to keep them away from those fruits. Labrador breeders will sometimes give their dogs left over dinner and not think of the consequences of it. For instance onions and garlic are in many delicious foods that cause serious health problems in dogs. The onions and garlic contain N-propyl disulfide, which destroys red blood cells, leading to hemolytic anemia. Vegetables are known to be a health food for humans and they are also healthy for dogs too, but it is important to make sure they do not ingest huge amounts at once. Thanksgiving has its own caveats but, don’t let your dog lick the turkey-roasting pan, "that’s the surefire way to give a dog a pancreatitis attack. You can pour a tablespoon of drippings over your dog’s food, but do not let him lick the pan clean our trained Labradors no better, but a young Labrador puppy would not know right from wrong, it needs you for guidance. On the bright side when you can’t resist giving your dog ice cream, go ahead and give them a little it’s not going to hurt. Early puppy training right from wrong with your super vision and guidance is the way to go. Of course avoid any ice cream flavor that contains chocolate, chocolate chips, or raisins. Some super markets sell ice cream that is made for dogs called frosty paws. If you’re looking for an AKC Labrador retriever we have a few available with some training and a few young pups ready to come home at 8 weeks of age this Christmas.

Barking Dogs

Excessive barking is one of the many behavioral problems that dog owners find annoying. Although barking of dogs is considered to be normal, it can become unbearable when your Labrador barks excessively, but there are ways to stop our Labradors from barking. However, with some dog behavior training techniques, you can easily stop your dog from barking excessively. Most people don’t know how to train their dogs not to bark but the only successful way is to know the reason behind the excessive barking. In this blog we share information about Labradors that bark from It is important to keep your dog physically active because if you don’t it can make your Labradors frustrated and it may result in unwanted barking. Here at Susana’s Labradors we make sure to give our Labradors as much attention so they don’t feel neglected or bored. We also professionally train our Labradors and Labrador puppies. We use certain commands when training our Labradors like, “sit”, “stay”, '”down”, and “no bark”. Successful ways to use these commands are not by just saying it to your dog but by making sure they obey what you are saying. All of our Chocolate Labrador Puppies, Fox Red Labrador Puppies, White Labrador Puppies, Black Labrador Puppies, Chocolate Labrador Puppy, and Yellow Labrador Puppies are trained when they are puppies by our commands so when they are ready to go home they are all trained and they obey , “sit”, “stay”, '”down”, and “no bark”. All dogs have no clue if it’s good or bad to bark unless you tell them, and that’s why it is easiest to train your Labrador when he or she is a puppy so they don’t know the difference. Training you Labradors not to bark is achievable. All it requires is practice and patience to get the desired result from your Labrador.

Why choose Life’s Abundance food?

Although you may think all pet food manufacturers have your pet’s best interests in mind, this is not always the case. All of our Yellow Labrador Puppies, Chocolate Labrador Puppies, Fox Red Labrador Puppies, White Labrador Puppies, and our Black Labrador Puppies love the food “Life’s Abundance”. We encourage all other Labrador owners to choose this food too. Life’s Abundance contains no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, no corn or corn gluten, no wheat or wheat gluten. This food is a balanced blend of calcium and phosphorous to support growing and ageing bones. We all want our Labradors to stay as healthy as they can and that’s why you should choose Life’s Abundance food. Most people don’t look to see what their dog’s food contains and they pick food that is not as good for them. Dogs need vitamins just like humans do and in Life’s Abundance there are vitamins that include A. C, AND E, it also contains Omega-3 fatty acids for healthy skin and a shiny coat. Labradors tend do get into things and get dirty just like any other dog and we love to see our dogs with healthy teeth and strong bones, which is why this food includes calcium and phosphorus. A healthy food is the best food for our Labradors because nothings more important than to see our dogs happy. Here at Susana’s Labradors all of our Labradors are active, strong and healthy and it’s because we feed them the best choice, “Life’s Abundance”. In this blog we found information about this food on You can also find more information about this food on our website under Labrador nutrition, which includes the amount of servings you should give you Labrador at what age and how much he or she weighs.

A little about understanding your dog

Our Labrador pups in training at Susana Labradors have been working on sit; lay down, stay, crate training, come, and leash walking. We also begin working on high 5 and potty training. They're just about ready for you to continue their training; some of our pups come to you fully trained in every way. These pups have been on field trips in puppy safe places to gain exposure to new beginnings. I tell everyone that it is just like bringing a baby home from the hospital. You need to watch them and take care of them and make sure they are always safe. It can be work, so don’t kid yourself. But it is very rewarding and we feel the house is not a home without a furry friend bounding about.
The Labrador pups in training are puppy’s we select, and at about 6 weeks of age, begin working with them on how to behave.
With any puppy or young adult, remember you have to continue their training in everything you do. If you don’t want them jumping on you, do not ever let them do that. Warn them first anticipating that they might jump out of excitement. Then give them a correction if they fail. I have found that a jumping dog is just excited, and wants a little attention, and they cannot resist a jump up. Keep the energy level low. Isolate yourself with your new best friend away from children and other pets when you train. One on one is the best until you really get to know him. Speak slowly and clearly and in a clam manner. Pets can get over stimulated by tone of voice alone. Lots of times, your dog will respond to the word “gentle” or “settle”. He will almost crumble to the ground and submissively lay on his back for a belly scratch.
I recently took in a lab male rescue. The owners said the dog was incorrigible, and wouldn’t learn or behave or give eye contact. Isn’t potty trained, very hyper, will not settle down is dog aggressive, etc. etc. So you have to analyze what was his living condition before? Was he allowed to come in the house often? When in the house was he left to roam and do whatever he thought best? Who was his role model? Another dog, perhaps that is unmannered, untrained, or aggressive with him? Or another dog, that the family favored, and the new dog was thrown outside or basically ignored. Was the training one on one? Was he allowed to be worked with alone while indoors? Was he the first dog, and once the new puppy came in, was he then thrown outside? The couple told me they had another dog, which was a well mannered pit bull, a real good dog, they conveyed. While I am not too familiar with other breeds, I think pits are animal aggressive, but I could be wrong. Could it be possible the pitt was aggressive towards the lab? Could that be why they told me he was aggressive…standing up for himself perhaps? Maybe that dog was allowed to come in. Since the lab was ill behaved the couple felt discouraged, gave up, so the dog was never worked with one on one, so he would be a nice house dog once inside. Imagine living with a brother or sister who was a straight A student, and you are just getting by…the honor student gets many more privileges than you, naturally…therefore, it may make you try harder in school, but, if you don’t understand the material, and have no guidance, or help, you will never be able to comprehend, thus, you remain a kid just getting by with D’s…instead you rebel against your sibling, act out negatively for attention, as you have been basically cast aside, and some attention is better than nothing at all. Imagine how that must feel? Someone other than you being favored. Sometimes these facts are not conveyed to you when bringing in a dog or a rescue, and you have to start at square one and do the math…figure him out, so to speak. Pretend that you have just adopted a child from another country who doesn’t speak our language and vice versa. The entire relationship is going to be about trying to communicate and figure each other out. Observe him, give him some guidance, set up some ground rules, and let him know it is going to be your way..Not his. There is only one big dog. That needs to be you. It takes time, and patience. But they are all worth it in the end. Believe me, they are individuals, and each is different; like children, but all worthy of appreciation and with a few tricks which I will convey, you can, with time bring a dog around.
One day in the infancy of my training, I cooked a nice dinner for my husband and family. It was homemade lasagna, I worked hard on it all day, and the meal was sure to be a success. We all sat down to eat, and under my arm, was the ill mannered family pet. Looking for a head scratch and table hand out. He kept knocking my arm off the table so it would fall on his head. I remember to this day saying “put him out, were eating!!” My husband said “no, he needs to learn how to behave while we eat, and if you throw him out, he will never learn” While he was right and It made perfect sense, it was a bit of an inconvenience, I agreed and we endured. From then on, I now train all my pups and dogs to wait on a pillow. The pillow can moved from room to room, and set next to the kitchen table a distance away. The dog can lie on the pillow, and wait while we eat not bothering us. You need to throw him a treat from time to time and say “Good Wait”. We have done this for others that come here for training and the new owners are amazed at how nice this is.
Of course, everyone knows you don’t feed him from the table or he will assume this is the way he is to behave. Begging for handouts.
We believe you need to be firm, but come from love. And hey, a few dog bones and yummy treats along the way for good behavior, really work. Yellow Labradors, Black Labradors, fox red Labradors are all the same when it comes to training, really food motivated, like a man, and a way to his heart is through his stomach.
He came to me with dirty teeth, a gnarly ear infection, and was obese. I mean really fat. It looked like he ate their other dog!! We run our Susana Labradors pretty lean, and I remember him when he was first here, and he was a gorgeous chocolate Labrador with a waistline. This doesn’t even look like the same dog. So, think of it….a dog that doesn’t feel good can be ornery. This is attributed to part of his problem by my assessment. Poor thing. Plus, when your fat, and we all have our fat days..we feel sluggish, bored, and tired. I know last month, when I had a tooth ache, my whole head felt like it was exploding, and for days I was cranky. The littlest interruptions unglued me… until the problem cleared up, I then returned to myself again. In the 4 days I have had him, the dog is working with me at my side, with treats, and ball playing, swimming after the tennis ball, and love and attention. He has lost 3 lbs, on my diet and exercise program already. Geez, that is almost a pound a day…(wish it worked like that for humans) He probably felt fat and dumpy, sluggish, and therefore wasn’t getting the proper exercise he needed as he just couldn’t keep up. A dog without exercise, and fresh air, becomes a behavioral problem. Caser Milan is a big advocate of exercise, rest, discipline. I tend to agree. No wonder they said he was aggressive…he wasn’t exercised enough, and was pent up. A tired dog is a lazy happy dog, with all the piss and vinegar worked out of him. When my daughter has emotional flare ups, being a teen, I tell her not to bash a hole in the wall, go for a jog, run as fast as you can for as long as you can. Get it out of your system. Same with a dog.
This dog swims in the pool daily, and exercises in the yard with a ball and a few other dogs. Man, he jumps in the water from the side of the pool and sticks his head under to get the ball. I know he loves it and makes him feel accomplished, when I say “Atta boy” Good job!!!
He is living with a female and 2 male Labradors of mine, one, of which is un-neutered. Both young dogs, but I have not seen any aggression in him at all and I believe it is because he is happy and taken care of. At first, my boy was a little snarly at the presence of this new male and they had a small standoff with hair sticking up, me supervising, but I corrected them both, petted each of them in front of each other, swam them together in the pool, and loved and scratched them both so that they didn’t feel slided with my love and attention and all was well and has been well since. He is rewarded when he does well, and disciplined when he does wrong. It is that simple. Just like a child. You wouldn’t let your 3 year old walk up to someone and kick them in the leg. Although very amusing, it is bad behavior. You would scold him, tell him to say he is sorry, and give him some consequences to face. This is the same with any dog. Young or old, trained somewhat or fully trained. A fully trained Labrador would have already learned right from wrong by living with me and my host of trainers, from the beginning, but you still have to remind them if they falter. So don’t ever buy a trained dog and expect it to be 100% from the beginning. Remember, any dog needs to learn it YOUR way. Your life, rules, consequences are different than mine. The dog needs a firm trainer.
We are working on his dirty ears daily. I use a commercial ear cleaner every day with a baby wipe, and every other day I use a mixture of my special blend. I use ¼ white vinegar, with 2 drops of tea tree oil, the rest is water, a touch of antibacterial liquid soap, and a splash of alcohol. I flush his ear canal, with a generous amount of the solution, massage the outside of his ears, one by one, and use a baby wipe wrapped around my index finger. After he shakes his head I can remove the black junk out of his ears. With ear cleaning it is not an easy fix…it is something you have to plan on doing every day and believe me, they do not like it. I think he appreciates it, trusts me, and knows I am trying to help him. In no time I feel I will be able to make this miserable dog who is suffering, a happy healthy and sound good boy. I scaled his teeth with my dental tool, while he lay down in my lap I re-enforced him that he was safe. “Gentle, settle, good boy” In a soft smooth voice. Spend some time, nothing happens fast. He will feel uncomfortable if you rush. I brushed his teeth with my dog tooth paste and that took care of that. One down! It took forever, but I was not giving up. I am the only one now in his world that has not given up on him…and I will not let that happen to him again. He is a great project dog, who needs me, and I feel good every day I wake up and look at his adorable face, and know that because of me, I will have made a dramatic difference in this dog’s life.
The dog is very responsive to my tone of voice and knows that with a treat he is ready to behave. He has come to trust me, love me, and generally wants to behave. He just needs guidance and direction and place to belong where he won’t be ignored. Once inside the home he lifted his leg and peeded on my shelf where my cook books are kept. This happened when I wasn’t watching. Because I didn’t see him do it, it was really my fault. Sure, he should know better, and that was one of our lessons, mine and his. For me, I should have been watching him to observe what he was doing, and if I saw him lift his leg even a tiny bit, I could have reminded him to get outside for that. Because I discovered this later, I still brought him over to the pee spot and showed it to him scolded him in a very disapproving voice, and put him straight outside…reinforcing the phrase “We go potty outside! “ To date, he has not since peed in the house. But I am watching him every minute, confining him and me to one room at a time, and sitting with him by the sofa while he lies at my feet on a short leash. This way I am always in control. I take him out often and am constantly offering him a chance to eliminate outside every hour to every two hours now. Eventually, I will be able to read him and he will let me know when he needs to go outside. This will come in time. We are still getting to know each other.
He does all his tricks for treats with me perfectly. Like my physical trainer at the gym once said “muscles in our bodies never forget”; I believe the same goes for dogs. If they know something, they will repeat it for you if you ask them to do so with a reward at hand. You have to make it fun for them. He was trained in the beginning, he just was obviously ignored, and the training started was taken for granted. A dog will test you once home, so you have to be ready for that. Dogs need love and attention and constant reminding and supervision, at first until they can be trusted. I suggest keeping them confined to one room at a time. Give them a blanket or dog bed with a toy or a bone, something to do while you are busy. Watch them, and when they stand up, bring them outside, and do this often. Eventually, they will get it. It doesn’t happen overnight, but if you just throw them outside, and leave them, it will never happen. This is a neglected dog that just needed an up-do on his behavioral skills. Remember, there are no bad dogs, just bad trainers. You don’t have to be a trainer to have success with your pooch. You need a general understanding of dogs, and tons of patience to get results. Remember, nothing good happens overnight. If you love someone bad enough, you will forgive them; not give up on them, correct them, so they can please you. A lover in your bed cannot please you without getting to know what you like. This needs to be communicated. Great lovers are not born; they are taught. This is the same way for a friendship, or any relationship, and the same with a dog. Communication is the key. The dogs generally do not want to do wrong. They want to please you, but again, they need guidance. If you don’t have the time to put into a dog, even a fully trained dog, then you should refrain from getting one at all. It is a shame that there are so many great dogs in the world that have been taken for granted, and basically ignored. Realize it is a commitment. In this case, the owners being ignorant could have had a really great dog, if they would have contacted a trainer, read a book, or just did a few simple things as I have done here. But to assume the dog is good to go…in your home is a huge understatement. My home is different from yours and the sights and sounds are completely my own. So with any dog there is an adjustment period, of at least 2 weeks to a month. Depending on what the dog previously knows and has been taught or gone through. Slow introduction, to the house, making it less confusing for him to find the appropriate door to go to let you know he has to go out is one thing. I try to make it as simple as possible adding new avenues and challenges slowly along the way. Each day and week, we add a few more things. This is the only way they grow into new endeavors. They need to be exposed, slowly. With time and patience, a loving and understanding heart, you can do it….here is a photo of this wonderful dog who will be up for adoption soon. Let us know if you like him and would like to consider him as a potential family member in your home. I advise that he be the only dog right now, as too many other distractions will just detour what skills I have managed to teach him.