Labrador retrievers are sturdy, solid dogs. They are almost square in appearance, with a strong body and sturdy legs. The maximum height for a male is 60cm, which puts them in the medium-size dog category, but their sturdy build can make them seem much larger. Weights range from 38kg for a large male to 25kg for a smaller female. Field line bred dogs are often taller and somewhat thinner in build.
Labrador retrievers are easily recognized by their broad head, drop ears and large, expressive eyes. Two trademarks of the Lab are the thick but fairly short double coat, which is very water repellent, and the well known "otter tail." The tail is thick and sturdy and comes off the topline almost straight. The feet are described as "webbed," with longer skin between the toes to aid in swimming. Color can range from black through chocolate to a red/yellow or even almost white.
The Labrador retriever is a moderately fast maturing breed, reaching adult height from six to 12 months, but possibly still filling out up to 2 years of age. Many Labs reach 12 to 14 years of age.