A new research study, led by the University of Sidney, researched the differences in life expectancy in Labrador Retrievers. They concluded that there is a significant difference between the lifespan of chocolate Labradors and yellow and black ones depending on the color of the coat and how is it relevant for a dog’s life expectancy.

dog’s life expectancyThe research study was conducted with the help of more than 30 000 Labrador retrievers from the United Kingdom. The research was conducted in collaboration with the VetCompass Programme that collects and analyses patient data from dogs. This same study was also replicated in Australia because there Labradors are the most popular breed of dogs.

The lead professor for the research was Prof. Paul McGreevy from the University’s Faculty of Science. He said that the connection between the coat color and the life expectancy was totally surprising for him and his team.

He explains that this might be due to “breeding certain pigments” because in order to get a Labrador Retriever with chocolate colored coat both parents need to carry the chocolate gene, and this gene is recessive. This might be the result of a reduced gene pool.

In the UK, the median life expectancy of Labrador Retrievers that are non-chocolate is 12.1 years. Chocolate Labradors tend to have 10% shorter life-spans. The research study also concluded that chocolate Labradors tend to be twice more likely to have problems with otitis externa (inflammation of the ear canal), and 4 times more like to have pyodermatitis (hot-spots).

Read the original article “A dog’s color could impact longevity, increase health issues”.

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