A Dudley Labrador is a rare, pink-nosed Lab with a unique genetic combination. You’ve seen a black and brown-nosed Labrador, but it’s not all the time you come across a yellow Labrador with no pigmentation around their nose.
If you’re thinking of adding the Dudley Lab to your family, I’ve compiled an overview of this rare type of Labrador.
Get to know why they are so unusual, how they got their pink nose, and whether the Dudley Labrador is any different from regular chocolate, black or yellow Labradors.
What Is a Dudley Labrador? What Does It Look Like?
A Dudley Labrador is a yellow Labrador without any pigmentation around the eye rims, nose, and feet. They’re sometimes called “pink-nosed Labradors” because of this lack of pigmentation.
This lack of pigmentation is a unique genetic trait that’s passed on from generations. It is by no means a defect or abnormality but a naturally-occurring instance amongst the breed.
Normally, a yellow Labrador will sport a black or brown nose, eye rims, and foot pads. What’s more, unlike other Labradors who end up losing pigment as they age, the Dudley Lab will feature this pink nose from the day they are born until they grow into adults.
This Labrador looks like any regular yellow Lab at first glance, but the pinkish nose and light eye rims are telltale signs it’s a Dudley.
Here’s another golden Dudley Labrador. Most Dudleys also feature light-colored eyes; in this case, yellowish hazel.
Here’s another photo of a Dudley Lab puppy. The bright yellow eyes are striking as well as the light nose. Other than that, they look like any regular Labrador with their large, droopy ears and beautiful short hair coat.
This young Dudley Lab features the same distinct “pink nose” and striking yellow eyes.
Take a look at this video to have a better idea of what a pink-nosed Dudley Labrador look like.
Dudley Labrador Genetics: How Do Dudley Labs Get Their Pigmentation?
You might have noticed whenever Labrador puppies are born, they usually sport a pink nose and eye rims. As they grow older, this pink shade will darken and will turn into a light brown, dark brown, or black shade.
In contrast, Dudley Labradors will have noses and eye rims that will remain pink from the day they’re born up until old age. This pink nose results from a lack of melanin or pigment carried in the dog’s cells. Usually, this trait is inherited from the parents.
A Dudley Labrador is often produced when two chocolate Labs with a yellow genetic history are bred together.
There’s also a chance a Dudley could also occur when a chocolate Labrador is bred together with a yellow Lab. Around professional breeders, this combination is considered a no-no but can sometimes happen with new breeders who are not familiar with how dog genetics work.
Of course, there are more nuances to Labrador’s genetic combination that could result in a Dudley Labrador.
One thing that might confuse people when it comes to identifying Dudley Labradors is the fact that some Labs will lose pigmentation as they grow older.
There are instances of a black or yellow Labrador with a black nose slowly losing its pigmentation. Over time their black noses will turn pink, confusing some people into thinking they are Dudleys even if they’re not.
This process of losing pigmentation is called depigmentation. It happens because as the dog ages, the Tyrosinase (an enzyme that produces melanin) becomes less effective. This will result in the dog losing pigmentation around the nose and eye areas.
You can learn more about the color genetics of Labrador Retriever by watching this video:
Are Dudley Labs Different From Regular Labrador Retrievers?
The main difference between a Dudley Lab and a regular Labrador is only one of the looks: their pink noses, paws, and eye rims.
Dudleys are no different from Labradors with a black or brown nose. In fact, a Dudley Lab would have the same temperament, personality, friendliness, and athleticism as any regular Lab.
What Eye Colors Do Dudley Labradors Have?
Because they lack pigment around their noses, the same will go for their eyes. That’s why most Dudley Labs will have light-colored eyes like yellow, hazel, light blue, or even teal.
In general, Dudleys are classified as belonging under “Yellow Labradors” and most regular yellow Labs will showcase light hazel, black or brown eyes.
Are Dudley Labs Rare?
Yes, they are considered rare dogs because they require a specific type of genetic combination to be created. Unless breeders deliberately produce Dudley Labradors, they won’t naturally occur consistently.
What’s more, a lot of Labrador breeders control this gene when it comes to breeding. Breeders often prevent this type of Labrador from being created because Dudley Labs are not recognized by most kennel clubs, like the United Kennel Club or the American Kennel Club.
They are also excluded from being registered as part of the breed because they are rarely produced.
Dudley Lab Temperament and Personality: Do They Make Good Family Dogs?
Yes, Dudley Labs make fantastic family dogs, just like any Labrador Retriever. Even though they can be highly active, Labs are a favorite among those looking for all-round dogs.
A Dudley Lab is a friendly, outgoing, and active dog. Once properly trained, they would fit inside any home, even one with other pets and young children. Labradors are intelligent dogs, so owners won’t have any problem putting them through obedience training or have them follow instructions.
These dogs also love the company of people and don’t do well when kept alone for long periods of time. They are more than happy to greet new people but will also be protective of their families when the need calls for it.
One thing to keep in mind though is that these dogs are active and energetic. They require daily exercise or some form of physical activity to keep them busy; otherwise, they will turn destructive.
They have been known to chew on furniture, carpets, and other things in the home when they have a lot of pent-up energy.
What’s more, Dudley Labs tend to “bark” or vocalize. You can stop them from doing this by giving them a toy they can carry around or chew on their mouth to keep them busy.
Common Health Issues of a Dudley Lab (and Lifespan)
Dudley Labradors live a long life, around 12 years if they are cared for properly. This lifespan is about the same as any regular Labrador Retriever.
As for health issues, a Dudley will suffer the same health problems common among chocolate, black, or yellow Labrador varieties. These include:
This is a heritable condition. It happens when the hip joint doesn’t fit right into the hip socket. In some cases, this will be a painful issue for the dog but in other cases, the dog won’t show any symptoms at all.
For the latter, an X-ray will be required for the animal to be diagnosed.
Osteochondrosis Dissecans (OCD)
Osteochondrosis Dissecans (OCD) happens when the cartilage doesn’t grow properly around the joints, particularly around the elbow area. This results in a lot of pain for the animal and could lead to stiffening of the joints.
The dog will be unable to move or bend the affected joint. This condition usually shows up on dogs as young as four months old.
The Dudley Labrador can suffer from epilepsy, causing a mild seizure in the animal. Although it can be horrifying to watch a dog suffer seizures, the prognosis is usually very good.
If you’re unsure if your dog is suffering a seizure, there are signs to look out for. For instance, the animal might run wildly as if it’s being chased by something. They might also have problems walking and look as if they’re drunk or staggering.
A lot of things cause dog seizures, so it’s important to have the animal checked right away if you spot any of these signs.
Acute Moist Dermatitis
This causes the skin of the animal to become red and inflamed due to a bacterial infection. It’s also known as hot spots. This skin problem is easy to treat with antibiotics, medicated baths as well as clipping and clearing out the hair in the affected area.
The only special thing owners need to keep in mind with a Dudley Lab is that they can be prone to sunburn because of the lack of pigmentation on their noses.
If your Dudley loves to stay outside, it’s best to apply dog sunscreen to ensure their noses will be safe. Never use human sunscreen as it may be toxic to dogs. You can find specialty sunscreen for animals at your vet or pet shops.
Special Needs of the Dudley Labradors
Dudley Labradors don’t really need any special treatment. They are similar to any regular Labrador.
Healthwise, the only thing you need to pay attention to is the possibility of a sunburn on the nose as mentioned above, and that’s it.
Give them enough attention, healthy food, plenty of exercise as well as tons of love, and they will offer you the same devotion and affection in return.
Dudley Lab Puppy Prices and Expenses: How Much Does a Dudley Labrador Cost?
It’s always a good idea to find a reliable and honest breeder, so you can get a fair price for your Dudley. If you want a breeder to create a Dudley Lab for you, expect to pay up to $2,500 to $3,000.
Prices for a Dudley Labrador can vary depending on the breeder. Some breeders will take advantage of the dog’s uniqueness and price them higher than other regular Labs.
On the flip side, some breeders will price Dudley Labs lower, seeing them as more “inferior” since they’re not considered breed standard.
For comparison, regular Labrador puppies can cost around $800 to $2,000 whether it’s a chocolate, black or yellow Labrador.
When it comes to money spent on a new Dudley Labrador puppy, expect to spend a lot more during the first year than in succeeding years. New dogs will require a lot. This includes new items, vaccinations and more.
To give you an idea, I’ve compiled a quick overview of possible expenses you could incur in the first year of taking care of your new Dudley Labrador puppy.
- Estimated Dudley Labrador Puppy Price: $2,500 – $3,000
- Collar, ID Tags, Leash: $20 – $30
- Kennel, Dog Bed, Dog Crate: $50 – $300
- Toys and Treats: $50 – $200
- Grooming Accessories: $100 – $200
- Dog Food: $300 – $700
- Obedience School or Dog Training: $300 – $650
- Veterinary Care (Vaccinations, Checkups, Booster Shots, Spay/Neuter, Preventive Medication or Treatment): $450 – $2,500 depending on the condition and veterinary rates.
In the first year alone, you can expect to pay between $4,270 to $7,580. This price could be much higher though, reaching as much as $10,000, even more.
For monthly expenses, expect to shell out between $355 to $631. Again, this amount will vary because the prices and circumstances will be different.
Sometimes you could be getting your Dudley for a specific purpose instead of as a regular family pet, and this will mean specialized training or other necessities you would need to spend on.
Places to Find Dudley Lab Puppies for Sale or Adoption
Finding a specific breeder of Dudley Labs can be challenging since many experienced breeders will generally avoid producing one. However, you can occasionally find them among Labrador breeders or even in the rescue or adoption system.
Here are several breeders you can check out:
- The Labrador Club – The Labrador Retriever Club is an organization and community dedicated to the Labrador breed. They have a breeder directory sorted by state to make it easier for you to get in touch with possible breeders when looking for a Dudley Lab.
- Ashland Labradors – A breeder based in Nashville, Tennessee that specializes in breeding Labradors of correct and low-key temperaments and ones that would make fantastic family companions.
- Endless Mount Labradors – A breeder specializing in English Labradors. They are based in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Led by founder Donna Stanley, they specialize in the Labrador Retriever and ensure they are house-trained and with low-key temperaments.
- Marble Mount Kennels – Based in Greenview, California, this breeder has been in operation for 25 years. They focus on six traits when breeding their Lab puppies: great personality, beautiful looks, high hunting desire, proven pedigree, highly intelligent, and natural pointing instinct.
If you prefer to rescue or adopt a Dudley, they do show up in the system. Here’s a list of potential Labrador-specific rescue and adoption centers you can check out.
- Lab Rescue – A non-profit organization that helps rescue, foster, and find forever homes for abandoned, abused, neglected, or surrendered Labs, particularly in the areas of Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina.
- American Lab Rescue – An all-volunteer non-profit, they not only focus on purebred Labrador Retrievers but also Labrador mixes. They focus on helping homeless dogs, whether puppies or adult dogs.
- Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida – Started in 2000, this non-profit rescue focuses on rescuing Labradors and placing them in the right homes. They provide veterinary care, foster care, microchipping, and even neutering/spaying services for their rescues.
- Southern Skies Rescue – Not only does this rescue center focus on Labradors but also on other working dog breeds. They rescue these animals from high kill shelters and also taken in owner surrenders and strays. They are based primarily in Huntsville, Alabama.
- West Coast Labrador Retriever Rescue – This rescue helps save both Labrador and Golden Retrievers. Based in Southern California, they can accommodate adoptions in this area only. The rescue focuses on abandoned or unwanted dogs and features an all-volunteer staff.
Finally, always check with quality local breeders or animal shelters in your area to see if they have any Dudley Labradors available.
Should You Get a Dudley Lab?
If you love Labradors and don’t mind that they can’t compete in shows, then a Dudley Lab will be perfect for you.
A Dudley Labrador is a loving and gentle dog. It’s a great dog for single owners as well as families because they are people pleasers and adore companionship. They have an amazing temperament and will make fantastic pets.
Commonly Asked Questions
Are Dudley Labradors Considered Albinos?
Not really. The only similarity the Dudley Labrador has with an albino is the lack of pigmentation around the nose, paws and eye rim areas.
This lack of melanin does not affect the skin, fur, or other parts of the body. These areas will still contain pigmentation, so they cannot be classified as albinos.
Can a Dudley Lab Compete in Shows?
Since Dudley’s pink nose isn’t considered a breed standard by kennel clubs like the American Kennel Club or United Kennel Club, they cannot be entered in shows or other competitions where breed standard is a requirement.
If you have an intention to compete in shows, it’s best to avoid getting a Dudley Labrador. However, if show competitions and breed standards don’t matter to you, a Dudley Labrador would make a wonderful addition to your home.
What Is the Rarest Labrador Color?
Even if you see them fairly often, the chocolate Labrador is actually the rarest color type among Labradors.
A Dudley Labrador is counted as a yellow Labrador so while they’re rare, they aren’t considered to be the rarest. As for a black Labrador, they’re the most common Labrador color around.
A Dudley Labrador may be a unique dog without any pigmentation on its nose, paws, or eye area, but it doesn’t mean they are less of a Labrador.
Their pink noses make them stand out at first glance, but they carry the same friendly, outgoing, and energetic personality as any other Labrador Retriever.
Although it’s purely a natural occurrence, Dudleys aren’t allowed to compete in show circuits so if you intend to get a Labrador for competition. You’re better off getting a chocolate, yellow or black Labrador instead.
Finally, a Dudley Lab serves as a fantastic family pet thanks to their intelligent and playful personality. These dogs care for their humans and will be a loyal companion to you and your family if you welcome them into your home.