Goldendoodles, a cross between a Poodle and Golden Retriever, were first bred in 1970 as service dogs and have since become the most desired of the Oodle breeds. People are drawn to the friendly, affectionate and loyal qualities of the Golden Retriever – along with the Goldendoodle’s signature fluffy cuteness, plus the obedient, intelligent and low-shedding Poodle. Goldendoodle dog breeders hope to bring out these most desirable traits in the offspring. Goldendoodles are not official AKC breeds and therefore, there’s no guarantee or standard for temperament or appearance. Educating yourself on the parent breeds and researching reputable breeders is your best bet when deciding if this dog is right for you.
Here’s everything you need to know about Goldendoodles.
What is a Goldendoodle?
A Goldendoodle is a cross between a Golden Retriever and a Toy, Miniature or Standard Poodle.
The Goldendoodle was one of the first Oodles (designer dogs that are one part Poodle) to be bred and remains one of the most popular designer dogs – similar to its parent breed, the loyal and friendly Golden Retriever. The Golden Retriever is extremely social, playful and loves to be given a job. When mixed with the highly alert, sensitive and intelligent Poodle, the Goldendoodle, if left unstimulated and untrained, can have overwhelming energy levels for a family. Goldendoodles thrive off human interaction and can be prone to separation anxiety. They really love their owners! Both Golden Retrievers and Poodles are highly trainable and Goldendoodle puppies should start socialization as soon as possible.
How big are Goldendoodles?
Because there are no size standards, Goldendoodles have a wide height and weight range, based on the size of the Poodle. The Goldendoodle Association of North America, the Goldendoodle’s breed club, accepts breeders who produce all size Goldendoodles in order to keep the gene pool open.
Here’s the range of Goldendoodle sizes:
- Petite: shorter than 14 inches, 25 pounds or less
- Miniature: between 14 and 17 inches, 26 to 35 pounds
- Medium: between 17 and 21 inches, 36 to 50 pounds
- Standard: taller than 21 inches, 51 pounds or more
Verify with your Goldendoodle breeder what size dog you will be getting.
How active is a Goldendoodle?
Goldendoodles need to be mentally and physically active throughout the day to quell high social, intellectual and physical needs. To prevent these dogs from getting bored, offer varying physical and mental challenges and tasks, such a retrieving games with toys and food, along with human interaction and some down time. Dog daycare, or a dog walker who can stop by multiple times a day are good options for families or individuals who can’t provide enough activity for their Goldendoodle. Both Golden Retrievers and Standard Poodles are commonly trained as service dogs, and a Goldendoodle will also enjoy taking on the mental challenge of having a job.
Is a Goldendoodle right for a family?
Goldendoodles thrive with active families or singles who match the energy level and together time that the Goldendoodle requires. Goldendoodles will get bored napping or lying around all day, which could bring out undesirable qualities. These dogs enjoy being outdoors, so homes or apartments with access to a fenced-in yard are best. Goldendoodles want to be an integral part of your life and will enjoy joining you during most physical activities and social gatherings. Manners training as soon as possible is recommended to help your Goldendoodle learn when it’s appropriate to be rowdy and when it’s rest time.
How long do Goldendoodles live?
Goldendoodles live for about 12 to 15 years, depending on their size and health conditions. Golden Retrievers are prone to cancer, elbow and hip dysplasia and eye conditions, while Poodles also can suffer from hip dysplasia, eye problems and orthopedic problems in Toy and Miniature Poodles. There isn’t enough research on whether these health conditions affect the Goldendoodle lifespan. The GANA aims to keep the gene pools open in the hopes of overcoming these genetic health concerns of the parent breeds.
Do Goldendoodles need much grooming?
The Golden Retriever and the Poodle are on opposite sides of the shedding spectrum. While the Golden Retriever has a thick, water-repellant double coat and is a heavy shedder, the Poodle is low-shedding and needs to be brushed daily to prevent severe matting that, if unattended, can lead to a full shave to start new growth. The Goldendoodle’s coat texture – and grooming needs – will depend on the coat type of the Poodle, which can range from straight to curly. Curly coats tend to shed less, which is helpful for people with allergies, but will require regular trims and brushing. Learn more about Goldendoodle grooming here.
Goldendoodles are a lively and playful addition to a family. Educating yourself on both the Poodle’s and the Golden Retriever’s personalities will help your family prepare for bringing a Goldendoodle puppy into your home.
For more information: The Goldendoodle Association of North America