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Labrador Retriever vs. Pitbull

Photos of a black lab and a pitbull meeting on the diagonal in the middle with the letters VS in the center

Both Labrador Retriever and Pitbull are among the most popular dog breeds in the US. Some people love Labradors while others prefer Pitbulls. Want to know which of these canines is better for you? Read on to get a detailed comparison of these breeds and make an informed decision.

Labrador Retriever

Chocolate lab standing in a green grassy field

Labrador Retrievers are a type of gun dog. They were bred to hunt, point, and retrieve birds at the water’s edge. They also used to work in packs to find wounded animals. Nowadays, Labs are considered kind and friendly pups that love children and are good with other pets.

Labrador is a popular family choice for an all-purpose, well-mannered dog. They are well known for their intelligence and gentle temperaments. They are also well suited as service dogs because the desired traits of the breed include stability, intelligence, and good disposition.

Unlike some other aggressive breeds, Labrador Retrievers are not alpha dogs. They love to play and snuggle, making them a perfect addition to any family.


Portrait of a brown and white Pitbull smiling

Pitbulls have a reputation for being aggressive canines and it’s true to an extent. They are often trained for fighting purposes and are also used as guard dogs. Similarly, they also do well as rescue dogs because they can be very protective of their owners. Hence, Pitbulls can become great companions for people who live alone or have had traumatic experiences in the past.

The very protective nature of this breed also makes it an excellent family dog. Pitbulls are loving, loyal, and protective of their owners. A Pitbull can also get along well with children if they know how to treat a pooch. They are equally comfortable in the house or on a farm, where they can stay outdoors and play while protecting their family.

The resolute loyalty of these pups makes them easy to train. This is why you’ll often see that many of the best rescue dogs are Pitbulls.

Differences Between Labrador Retriever and Pitbull

Some of the marked differences between these breeds are mentioned in the following table.

CharacteristicsLabrador RetrieverPitbull
Average Lifespan10-12 years12-14 years
Height  21-24 inches17-20 inches
Coat MaintenanceMediumEasy  
TemperamentCalm and rarely fights other animalsAggressive and loves to fight other animals

Similarities Between Labrador Retriever and Pitbull

Brown and white Pitbull laying in grass

Not Hypoallergenic Both breeds are not hypoallergenic. Although they don’t top the list of heavy shedders, be prepared to clean up a decent amount of dander.

Energy Levels – Both breeds require a lot of exercise to stay calm and happy. They love to play and you will have to give them enough space to run around.

Kid-Friendly – Pitbulls and Labrador Retriever are very affectionate breeds and love playing. Hence, they are safe for kids and will even protect them in your absence.

Easy to Groom – These breeds have short, single coats and won’t require rigorous grooming sessions. As long as you regularly brush and clean them, they are very easy to groom.

Sleep Requirements – These dogs don’t like to sleep for long because they are always packed with energy, waiting to run around.

What is Better About Labrador Retriever?

Overhead view of a chocolate lab wearing glasses

Labrador retrievers are not aggressive towards other dogs. They also get along well with children and usually don’t show a lot of anxiety in front of strangers if socialized properly. Their large size may make them a bit too energetic for toddlers to handle, but older kids can do great.

Labs learn quickly and have a good memory. This makes them really easy to train because the training sticks with them. They will remember the drill even when you aren’t working directly with your dog every day.

What is Better About Pitbull?

Portrait of a black and white pitbull

Pitbulls have a strong sense of family and loyalty. They’re extremely intelligent, athletic, and versatile. These pups are often more trainable than other breeds because they’re so eager to please their owners.

Pitbulls have been praised for decades for their loyalty, strength, charm, and athleticism. They are absolute cuddle lovers and will not miss any opportunity to cuddle. As long as there’s a Pitbull around, cuddling is mandatory.

Pitbulls love meeting new people and even other animals. They are eager to make friends with everyone they meet. This makes them a perfect match for those who enjoy being surrounded by people all day long. On top of all that, Pitbulls need minimal grooming.

Who Should Get Labrador Retriever?

Chocolate lab puppy sitting in grass

If you’re looking for a dog that is great around kids, then you should get a Labrador Retriever. Labs are very playful and love to play with children. They also have high intelligence and are easier to train in comparison to most other dog breeds.

However, the downside of getting a lab is that they require rigorous exercise every day. If you’re not able to provide that, your pup can indulge in negative behavior. Therefore, it’s advisable to look for other options that don’t need a lot of exercise.

Who Should Get Pitbull?

Orange Pitbull puppy

A Pitbull is not the right type of dog for just anyone. If you live in an apartment or share your home with small children, a Pitbull may not be the best idea. Similarly, a multi-pet household is not a safe option for this breed. This is because they have an aggressive nature and can cause some unwanted incidents.

However, if you are someone who needs a personal guard dog, this breed is your best bet. Likewise, owners with big houses can choose these canines as they will be able to walk securely in the yard.

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