Sunset Labradors Breeding Program

Sunset Labradors is a small hobby breeding program dedicated to breeding healthy, sound, intelligent Labradors with correct conformation, classic temperament, and a moderate energy level.  The focus of my breeding program is quality, not quantity. I strive to breed Labradors with correct conformation based on the American Kennel Club standard for the breed. The dogs in my line are the show-type Labradors.  A number of the dogs in the pedigrees have show titles. Most of my dogs are good retrievers, but they do not have formal field training. Rally obedience training and walking in the woods are my favorite activities with my dogs. Several of my dogs are show quality and have been in the show ring in the past. For years, I have worked evenings and weekends so I have been unable to show my dogs. For about 25 years, I was an active volunteer and a member of the board of directors of Labrador Retriever Rescue, Inc.  I donated my time and talents to fostering, taking calls from people that needed to surrender their dog, and finding loving second homes for Labradors in need of a new family. I have been a member of the Labrador Retriever Club of Greater Boston for many years.

For years, the dogs in my breeding program have had OFA hip, OFA elbow, OFA cardiac (by echocardiogram), and OFA eye testing done.  My girls also have DNA testing done for PRA, EIC, CNM, DM, HNPK, RD/OSD, and D locus. 

The selection of the stud dog is based on health clearances as well as the pedigree, conformation, temperament, and working ability. The stud dogs I select often have show and/or working titles, or they come from show lines with some working ability. 

I provide new owners with a copy of the pedigree and all the health clearances of the sire and dam. I register the litter with AKC.

My dogs and their puppies receive quality care with regards to safety, diet, exercise, veterinary care, and loving companionship. My canine kids are part of my family and they live in the house with me.  They have access to a large fenced-in yard via a dog door in the kitchen.  My breeding females have 2 or 3 litters during their lifetime. Most of my retired girls live out their natural life with me.  I breed about 1 litter a year. You will be able to meet with the dam, the puppies, and several other older relatives.  I do not own the males that sire my litters. My puppies are raised in my home. For the first month, the puppies are in the guest room.  At 4 weeks of age, I move my puppies into large pen in my sunroom where they have room to sleep, play, and grow. Weather permitting, puppies are in an enclosed 12 foot by 24 foot patio area and a 10 foot by 34 foot shaded grass pen for several hours a day. They are exposed to a variety of sights, sounds, and surfaces. My puppies spend a lot of time interacting with friends and family while they are with me. When the puppies are about 7 1/2 weeks old, they make the first trip the veterinarian for a check-up. The puppies receive the first vaccination against canine diseases and prophylactic treatment for parasites. I provide new owners with a copy of the New Hampshire health certificate, care instructions, training tips, and a small bag of dog food.

My goal is to identify the puppy that will meets needs and expectations of their new owners.  I spend a great deal of time with my puppies on a daily basis.  There is usually some difference in the personality, activity level, confidence, sound and touch sensitivity of the puppies in the litter. A puppy to be placed in a home with young children, first time buyers, and seniors will receive very careful consideration. There may not be a puppy in every litter that is suitable these families. I encourage prospective owners describe the characteristics and traits they find desirable in Labradors. My puppies are temperament tested by an experienced dog trainer when they are at least 7 weeks old.  Based on this information, I will be able to identify the puppies that will be a good match for you and your family. For more information, visit the puppy selection page.

A written health guarantee is included in the sales agreement. The purpose of my sales agreement/contract is to establish an understanding between the breeder and the buyer. The intent is to protect the interests of the breeder and the buyer, and to provide for the health, safety and well being of the puppy. I want my puppies to have a happy, healthy life. The goal is to avoid misunderstandings and conflicts, and remain on friendly terms with the new owners. The agreement states my obligations to the new owners as well as the obligations of the owner to me and to the puppy. I stand behind my puppies with a new puppy or a refund if a problem develops.

AKC limited registration will be issued with all the puppies sold as companion dogs. A spay/neuter agreement is also required. This is an important aspect of responsible dog ownership. Unplanned and unwanted litters are prevented. The risk of several serious health problems may be significantly reduced when the surgery is done post maturity.  Based on recent studies, early spaying or neutering puppies may predispose them to various health risks including shortened lifespan, bone cancer, obesity, hypothyroidism, abnormal bone growth and development, CCL ruptures, hip dysplasia, and urinary incontinence in females.

I will be available to answer questions as long as you own a Sunset Labrador. I have a lot of experience raising puppies and helping others solve problems with their puppies. I am happy to help new owners and I will continue to assist the owners of a Sunset lab with any problems and concerns throughout the dog's lifetime.

I will provide references from people who have purchased a Sunset Labrador. Several families that own Sunset Labs are available to talk with prospective owners. I will also provide you with the names of my veterinarian and other Labrador breeders.