The Boston Lab: A Complete Guide

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If you are in the market for a dog that is intelligent, social, alert, and very responsive, Boston Lab might be your ideal choice.

These dogs are also famous for being excellent guard and watchdogs, but also for their playfulness and general affection towards their human families.

Energy is something they don’t lack, neither is their charm. They have both in abundance and are great pets for people who are athletic, or families that live an active lifestyle.

However, like with any other breed, once it becomes popular, many owners will suddenly decide to cash in on their pets by breeding them and selling the litter.

The problem with this is that in most cases, they don’t even realize how serious this process is and how important it is to mix perfect genes.

A black Boston Lab waiting for a treat
The Boston Lab is a highly intelligent breed.

The end results are low-quality puppies that have a plethora of health issues.

Health issues you will have to deal with if you buy your dog from such a “breeder”.

So, to make sure that you’ve bought a perfect puppy, you need to get familiar with the breed and all it comes with.

This way, you will know if this breed is what you are looking for. To help you out in this quest, we’ve decided to write this Boston Lab guide.

Besides getting to know this breed much better, you will also learn how to distinguish a reputable breeder from a bad one, and even how to properly take care of your puppy.

But, before we get to those parts, let’s talk about the things you should know before actually buying a puppy.

The Boston Lab Puppies – Before You Buy…

Buying a Boston Lab puppy is the easiest part. It’s what you do before that, that is tricky and where you need to be extremely careful.

Therefore, the things you should ask yourself before opening the doors of your home with the puppy in your hands, are:

  • Can you even afford a Boston Lab pup?
  • Can you find a reputable breeder?
  • And, are you ready for what comes from living with one?

Once you have answers to these questions, you are “allowed” to fall in love with this breed and decide to welcome a puppy into your home.

What price are the Boston Lab puppies?

On average, a Boston Lab puppy that comes from a reputable breeder and is healthy and with no hidden conditions that might pop up later in his life goes for around $900.

If you find a puppy for under $700, we recommend skipping that deal because you are most likely dealing with a backyard breeder or a puppy mill.

They should be avoided at all costs and we will explain who they are and why to avoid them in the following section.

On the other hand, if you find a puppy for a much higher price, you are probably dealing with a reputable breeder, but with pups that are dog show champion material.

If you just want a pet and don’t plan to win medals and trophies with him, there’s no need to cash out a small fortune.

How to find reputable Boston Lab breeders?

And now, the most important part of the entire process – Finding a reputable breeder and going back home with a high-quality Boston Lab puppy.

You are probably thinking, “Since it is this important, this part is probably quite complicated”, and to a certain point you are right.

It can be extremely hard, if not impossible, to find a reputable breeder if you don’t know what to pay attention to and which questions to ask.

But, if you know what you are doing, it can be really easy because you will know how to distinguish a reputable breeder from a sea of inexperienced and scamming “breeders”.

Here are the red flags that you should keep an eye on and “abort the mission” if any of them pop up.

  • No official website
  • Home delivery and online payment
  • No medical records for the puppy
  • No vaccination reports and schedules for the upcoming vaccinations
  • No pedigree
  • No health test clearances for the puppy’s parents
  • No knowledge of the breed’s history and all the traits
  • No advice on how to properly take care of your dog
  • No advice on proper training
  • No diet plans and meal ingredients list
  • No interest in your lifestyle so that he can help you choose the pup that matches your personal preferences
  • No contacts of previous customers so that you can get in touch with them and ask how happy they are with this breeder’s dogs

With a reputable breeder, all the mentioned things here will be completely the opposite. And, to be sure that the breeder you are talking to is trustworthy, just ask all of the things from our list.

If he is serious about his work, he will have all of them prepared even before you have arrived at his home.

3 Little-known facts about the Boston Lab puppies

A Boston Lab laying down
With the Boston Lab, training right from the start is necessary.

Here are some of the little-known facts about Boston Lab puppies, that will help you understand them better and be sure that you are ready to welcome one home.

  • They have a waterproof coat

Adult Boston Labs have a double-layered, thick coat which makes them waterproof. They love water and are excellent swimmers.

However, while they are still puppies, they have only one layer of feather-like hair, which means that even though they love the water, they are not quite ready for swimming and could easily catch a cold.

You should not allow your Boston Lab to swim at least until he is one year old and his double-layered coat is fully ready for the water.

  • They can live in an apartment

Boston Labs aren’t huge dogs and they can easily live in apartments.

But, due to their high-energy levels, especially while they are in their “teen years”, they will need plenty of outdoor exercises, so that they don’t become destructive.

  • They can be great watchdogs

Boston Labs are alert by nature and they will bark every time they hear or sense something suspicious.

But, to prevent this from becoming an annoying habit, you need to socialize your pup right from the start, so that he realizes that not every sound and not everyone is a threat.

Physical Traits of the Boston Lab

In this section of the guide, we will talk about the full-grown size of Boston Labs, as well as for how long you can expect your faithful companion to be by your side.

How big is a full-grown Boston Lab?

Boston Labs are not big dogs and when they are fully-grown, their height ranges from some 13 to 17 inches.

Of course, like with any other dog breed, the higher end of the range is reserved for males, while females are a few inches lower.

As for the weight range, it goes from some 20 pounds and ends at around 50 pounds.

Again, those 50 pounds can be expected if you have a male, while females don’t usually go over 25 to 30 pounds of weight.

What is the life expectancy of the Boston Lab?

As it is usually the case with mixed breeds, the Boston Labs have a relatively long lifespan.

If taken care of properly, which means high-quality dog food, regular exercise, and regular vet checkups, these dogs will live from some 11 to 15 years.

Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the Boston Lab

A brown Boston Lab lying on the grass
The Boston Lab sometimes chooses to ignore its master.

The best way to describe a Boston Lab is like a dog that is always happy.

They love being a part of the family and to get involved in every activity, and they always have enough energy for a walk or playtime.

But, if you ignore them, they are known to become lonely, and from that loneliness, they can display destructive behavior.

Therefore, you need to make your Boston Lab feel like he is a rightful member of the pack because being a part of the pack is what they live for.

However, you need to make your dog realize that he is not the leader and that you are, so you have to be a fair and strong Alpha. Otherwise, you might be challenged for the leadership.

The best way to let your dog know that you are the Alpha is to use rewards and praise during the training, instead of choosing a harsh, strict approach.

Once you establish a chain of command, you will be amazed how well and quickly your Boston Lab picks up commands and how responsive he is when you use a cheerful tone instead of yelling.

Also, the training should begin as soon as possible, because once they are over 4 months of age, they start losing interest in following commands.

And, they also need proper and early socialization because they can get very territorial and protective.

Make sure your pup is constantly exposed to new people, children, pets, dogs, experiences, and sounds. He will be a true gentleman and form bonds much easier.

Furthermore, these dogs are lively, loyal, affectionate, and they feel everything you feel. So, make no mistake, your Boston Lab will know when you are sad and he will be sad as well.

On the other hand, if he feels that you are happy and well, he will be happier than you ten times.

In the end, these dogs can also be great watchdogs, due to their alertness.

However, they are not big so they cannot be guard dogs, but they will let you know if something is wrong and if you and your family are in danger.

Boston Lab Diet

When it comes to how and what to feed your Boston Lab with, our recommendation would be high-quality dry dog food.

Such food provides well-balanced meals that have all the nutrients needed for the proper development of your dog.

As for how much, since your Boston Lab is not a big dog, 2 to 2-and-a-half cups of food daily will be fine.

But, to protect your dog from becoming overweight, you should divide this food amount into two or even three equal meals.

How much Exercise does a Boston Lab need?

Boston Labs will be quite happy to live in an apartment. Sure, a large house with an even larger yard would be ideal, but if your dog has enough exercise during the day, he won’t mind even a small apartment.

Now, you need to know that your Boston Lab needs exercise every day. This includes 30 minutes of walking and another 30 minutes of exercising.

As for which exercises will be the best, we recommend hide and seek, tug of war, and fetching the ball or a stick, as these games stimulate both his body and mind.

You should also keep in mind that Boston Labs are not fans of high temperatures and that moderate climates suit them best.

The Boston Lab Health and Conditions

In general, this breed is known to be healthy. But, sometimes, they can inherit certain health issues from both parent breeds.

These health problems include:

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Cataracts
  • Respiratory Problems
  • Luxating Patella
  • Reverse Sneezing

Therefore, just to be in the loop and aware of the problems that your dog might suffer from, it’s always a smart idea to talk to the breeder about the health issues both parental bloodlines had.

It doesn’t mean that your dog will suffer from any of the mentioned health issues, but it’s better to let the vet know what to pay attention to during regular checkups.

My final thoughts on the Boston LabA close up of a Boston Labs face

We have reached the end of our Boston Lab guide. By now, you should have a much better insight into all the important things about this adorable breed.

And, thanks to our “How to find a reputable breeder” section, you should be capable of finding a breeder that is highly experienced and the pup you choose should fit all your personal needs and preferences.

However, to make sure you’ve covered all angles and that your final decision is a well informed one, we recommend reading our summary of everything we talked about today.

So, we know that the dog of your choice, Boston Lab, comes with the best of both worlds.

He is smaller than a Labrador Retriever, yet bigger than a Boston Terrier, and he is, just like his parents, a dog that is loyal, affectionate, fun-loving, and generally happy most of the time.

He will follow you anywhere, however, don’t be surprised if sometimes he hears your command but chooses to play deaf and do things his way.

This dog really loves to please his family and is always willing to play, especially with the kids.

Also, training comes easily to him due to his high intelligence levels, but sometimes, as we mentioned, Boston Lab can be stubborn.

For this reason, training right from the start is necessary, as is early socialization, so that he doesn’t bark at everything that moves.

All in all, with proper training and early socialization, this dog can be a wonderful addition to any family type, as long as there are love and affection in the air, and as long as he is included in every family activity.

So, what do you think about this breed now? Still interested in becoming a Boston
Lab owner?

If so, we are happy that we helped you make the right choice.

Thank you for reading and feel free to share our guide on social media if you think that it can help more people realize how great this breed is.

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