The Labrador Retriever, also known as the Lab, the Small Water Dog, and the Lesser Newfoundland; traces its roots to Newfoundland, Canada. The breed was originally used to help fishermen haul full nets to shore, and the Lab later found its place as a gun dog, excelling at retrieving waterfowl and upland game. Labs have soft mouths, useful for retrieving game; webbed feet for swimming, and thick double coats that protect them from cold water temperatures. Labrador owners should be aware that this breed has high levels of energy. They require plenty of daily exercise and play to stave off boredom and prevent potentially destructive chewing behavior from developing. Labrador Retrievers have a zest for life, and they enjoy the company of other dogs and most especially, people. They make ideal pets for large, active families who enjoy the outdoors.