I would wager to say that there are as many opinions on this topic as there are puppies in a litter however – I will give you my take.
If you buy a lab in the spring, Fido (ya know, Fido, that everydog we all know and love) will be – at most – 9 months old by the time hunting season comes around. Have you ever tried to take a 9 month old puppy to do something serious? It’s like trying to get a room full of first graders to solve an advanced algebra problem. They have lots of energy and good intentions – but their attention span is simply not that long.
Many years ago I tried to take a 9 month old lab puppy duck hunting on opening day. It was a beautiful day. There were ducks everywhere. Timber proceeded to lift is leg on the ducks we shot and retrieve the decoys instead. We all had one hell of a laugh, but there was still not a serious thing about that hunt.
Fall puppies are an entirely different story. If you pick Fido in the fall, they will be roughly a year to a year and a half old when they go to the field for the first season of serious action. That little bit of age, extra time, and training can make all the difference in the world when one is looking to have a serious hunt. Their attention span is longer, they are slightly more patient, and then dog and the handler have had longer to work out their relationship.
All of my hunting guide clients that buy dogs from us take home their puppies in the fall. Additionally many of what I would call my die hard hunting clients (ya know the guys who spend more time in the field than they do at work) all prefer getting new dogs in the fall.
I really don’t think there is a “right” answer – just something to think about as you browse our website.