Available Labrador Retriever Colours

Labrador Retriever colours come in black, yellow and chocolate and with many variations in between. A yellow Labrador can vary from cream to red with puppies within the same litter can appear in a variety of colours.

The recognised colours for the Labrador Retriever are black,yellow and chocolate.

Any other colour, or combination of colours is deemed as a breach of breeding standards. While a white spot on the chest is accepted, no other colours are accepted.

Follow this link to see how genes determine the colour of a Labs coat


However, there are variations within the various Labrador colour groupings.

Labradors can also appear as silver. However,this is an incorrect description of the Labs true colour. Following studies by the American Kennel Club made in 1997, the organisation felt that the appropriate colour for these labs should be chocolate.

Ten years earlier the organisation had conducted an enquiry into the breeding of Labradors registered as silver.

The AKC found that there was no reason to doubt that the dogs were purebred Labradors, but had been incorrectly described as silver.

The colours for these dogs should have been registered as chocolate, rather than silver.

People seeking to buy a Labrador puppy should be warned not to buy a puppy described as having a "rare" colour for the breed. See our page on What Is A Blue Labrador for more information.

A reputable breeder should tell a purchaser if the puppies colour is incorrect and advise that the animal should be spayed or neutered.

However,it should be pointed out that incorrect Labrador Retriever colours does not mean that the dog will not be a good pet.

In the early years of the last century , through to the 1950's Labradors now labelled as yellow were in fact much darker and of ten labelled as gold.

That was changed by the Kennel Cub in the in the United Kingdom to yellow on the grounds that gold was not actually a colour.

As the 20th century progressed a public demand for Labs that were a lighter shade of yellow, through to cream, developed.

Labrador Retriever colours in the darker shade of gold made a return in the 1980s. Labelled as very dark yellow, the colour progressed to fox red.

Chocolate Labradors became recognised and were first seen as a distinctive colour during the 1900s. Chocolate coloured Labs were available before that period, but were not registered.yel

Chocolate Color Labrador Puppy
Source: Washington State University

Labrador Retrievers coloured black are hailed as the original Lab. The black Lab came about through interbreeding of the St John's water dog and the Newfoundland.

Black Labrador Retriever
Source: Washington State University

Related Articles:

Genes And Coat Colours

Yellow Labradors

Black Labradors

More About The Labrador Breed

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