December 11, 2023

Labradors love water, as it’s in their DNA, and their webbed toes, water-repellent coats and rudder-like tails prove that. But not Stella, who is stuck on a tiny island and may never return.

In a video posted to the TikTok account @dognamedstella four days ago, the yellow Labrador can be seen sitting on a small rock in a grey lake, inches from the shore. Stella has a disgruntled look on her face, resigned to her fate, with her toes just slightly dipped in the water.

“Stella is stuck on a tiny island. I guess this is goodbye,” reads the text. “This is my life now,” reads the caption.

The Labrador retriever’s closest ancestors were from Newfoundland, a coastal area of Canada near the Labrador Sea.

Recognizing the dogs’ agility in the water, Newfoundland fishermen began using them to retrieve fishing lines and nets,” says the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). “The fishermen found that these dogs had great endurance and strength, so some used them to tow barges.”

Despite their popularity and gentle demeanors, Labradors are high-energy and large dogs, so training and obedience classes from a young age is recommended.

“These bold, bouncy dogs are strong and full of energy, so proper training and socialization are essential,” says the American Kennel Club (AKC). “Luckily, with their eager-to-please, intelligent demeanors, these dogs can make training classes a joy for themselves and their owners.”

Labradors are also a working breed, so need a lot of stimulation when they’re not eating or napping.

“Though they’re famously laid-back, Labs were made to run, swim, and work,” adds the AKC. “Labs that don’t receive ample exercise, including at least one long, brisk walk per day, might end up displaying destructive behaviors, like chewing on objects around the house or escaping the yard.”

A Labrador retriever shaking off water by the shore. A similar dog “stuck on a tiny island” has had the internet in stitches.
VV Shots/Getty Images

If your Labrador is one of the water-loving kind, it’s important to keep an eye on them.

“Be sure they have a way out and don’t look like they’re panicking or struggling,” says the AKC. “Labradors’ swimming instincts make most of them relaxed in the water, but young dogs, old dogs, and dogs that have not yet built up their stamina will get tuckered out sooner and need easy access to shore. Just to be safe, you may want to investigate purchasing a dog life jacket.”

Users on TikTok loved the funny video, with it receiving more than 175,000 likes. “Legend of the woof states that stella stands there to this day protecting the lake,” one posted.

“Some say you can still see her on foggy nights,” wrote another.

Newsweek has reached out to @dognamedstella via email for comment.

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