The Silver Labrador Retriever is a relatively new subtype of the Labrador Retriever characterized by its silver, or sometimes referred to as “blue” coloring. While the history of Labrador Retrievers can be traced back well into the 1800s, there were no records of silver Labrador’s until almost 1950. The three base color variations of the Labrador Retriever are black, yellow and chocolate. The introduction of silver into the Labrador community has actually caused a great deal of controversy.
There is a great schism between silver Labrador supports and deniers in the Labrador Retriever community. In the simplest form of the argument, some say silver Labs exist under the category of pure breed Labradors and others do not. The arguments for those that support silver labs argue that through the growth of popularity in the chocolate Lab, there has been introduction of genetic variation that explains for the silver coloring of some Labrador Retrievers. Those opposed, argue that there is in fact no genetic basis for silver coat color. They instead suggest that at some point in the mid-1900s, chocolate Labrador’s were interbred with Weimeraners that carry the gene for silver fur. This theory has caused silver Labrador’s to often be kept out of show competitions and has prevented them from being allowed to be an officially accepted color category in the Labrador community.