Brandi Hunter, American Kennel Club Vice President, Public Relations and Communications
June 13, 2017
According to the breed standard, established by the Labrador Retriever Club, Inc., there are three acceptable colors of Labrador Retrievers. Those colors are Black (all black), Yellow (fox-red to light cream), and Chocolate (light to dark chocolate). Silver is not an acceptable color of Labrador Retriever and is a disqualifying fault. Based on an agreement in 1987 between the American Kennel Club and the LRC, it was agreed that there was no proof that these silver dogs were not purebred and the breeders of the silver dogs subsequently registered them as chocolates.
Using parentage testing, it cannot conclusively be proven that silver Labradors are not purebred dogs or are crossed with Weimaraners. The Labrador Retriever breed does not carry the dilute gene dd that appears universally in the Weimaraner and is responsible for silver color.
Responsible breeders are tasked with breeding for health and standard and not solely for aesthetic. While we respect the choice of pet owners to select the breed of their choice, the LRC, Inc. does not view silver Labradors as appropriate breeding stock and believes that they should not be bred. They may compete in AKC events but are disqualified from the conformation show ring.