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Toy Cockapoo: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

Written by: Greg Iacono

Last Updated on April 9, 2024 by Dogster Team

Toy Cockapoo: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

As one of the first of a growing list of “designer dogs,” the Toy Cockapoo is a wonderful mix of Cocker Spaniel and Poodle. They are easy to train, people-oriented, affectionate to a fault, and shed very little. They’re also intelligent, always happy, make great companion dogs, and are super cute! These qualities combine to create a breed that’s become one of America’s favorites.

Breed Overview

Height:

16 – 22 inches

Weight:

25 – 40 pounds

Lifespan:

12 – 15 years

Colors:

Red, apricot, cream, white, chocolate, black, merle, tri-colored, tuxedo

Suitable for:

Active families, children, apartment dwellers, those looking for a social dog

Temperament:

Loving, friendly, intelligent, laid-back, easy to train

If you’re considering a toy cockapoo for your next dog, we have some interesting and in-depth information about them below. Read on to discover everything about this sweet dog and become a Toy Cockapoo expert!

Cockapoo Characteristics

Energy
+
High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Trainability
+
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Health
+
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Lifespan
+
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Sociability
+
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

The Earliest Records of Toy Cockapoos in History

The cockapoo breed, including Toy Cockapoos, was a happy accident in the United States during the 1960s. The true history of the species is hard to trace. Some sources say they were first bred in the 1950s. While dog experts agree that cockapoos weren’t a planned breed, when folks started noticing their attributes, including low shedding, low odor, high intelligence, and off-the-charts sweetness, they started crossing cocker spaniels and poodles with fervor.

Toy Cockapoos are one of their four breed sizes, including the teacup, mini, and standard. The different sizes were bred using cocker spaniels (one size) and the four different sizes of poodle breeds (toy, miniature, medium, and standard). There’s very little data on when and how the Toy Cockapoo came about, but evidence suggests it was in the early 1970s. In short, cockapoos and Toy Cockapoos have been around for 50 to 60 years, a relatively short time for a dog breed. They are the most popular dog breed in New York City because they do so well living in apartments.

miniature cockapoo dog lying on the floor
Image Credit: srw-photo, Shutterstock

How Toy Cockapoos Gained Popularity

Toy Cockapoos, as we now know, have been around since the 1960s and gained popularity rather quickly. When you consider how appealing they are, that’s not surprising. Many dog lovers had long been looking for a breed that combined the qualities of the cocker spaniel and poodle without the health problems common to the two breeds. Toy Cockapoos became much more popular in the 1990s when stars like Ashley Judd started showing off theirs at public events.

Toy cockapoos became popular because of their specific traits, including their small size, which makes them perfect apartment dogs. While not 100% hypoallergenic, toy cockapoos shed minimally and are good for pet parents with allergies. Toy cockapoos are also easy to care for and, besides regular brushing to keep their curly hair from getting too out of hand, are very low-stress.

That makes them perfect for seniors, singles, and families with small children. Speaking of children, toy cockapoos are very gentle and affectionate dogs and do well with children of all ages. For all these reasons, they have become one of the most popular dogs in the US and Europe.

Formal Recognition of Toy Cockapoos

Although the cockapoo is very popular, they are not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) because they aren’t a pure breed. What’s interesting, though, is that the toy cockapoo’s popularity far exceeds that of many recognized breeds. Several clubs have been established for the cockapoo in all four of its glorious forms.

The first was the Cockapoo Club of America, founded in 1998. In 2011, the Cockapoo Club of Great Britain was formed in England. Another club, the American Cockapoo Club, was formed in 2015. These clubs, and the many people who adore the cockapoo, are doing their best to ensure that the AKC one day recognizes this beautiful dog breed. However, since the AKC currently doesn’t allow mixed breeds, it might be some time until that happens.

cockapoo sitting on grass
Image Credit: shaymen99, Pixabay

Top 7 Unique Facts About Toy Cockapoos

Think you know a lot about toy cockapoos? We’re willing to bet that the facts and figures below say otherwise! Below are 10 unique facts about the toy cockapoo that you’ll find fascinating!

1. Toy Cockapoos Don’t Bark Often

Many people love Toy Cockapoos because they’re a relatively quiet breed that barks infrequently. That makes them great for apartment living, where a barking dog could cause problems with neighbors. It’s also suitable for families with small children, especially after they fall asleep.


2. Standard Poodles Are Rarely Used To Breed Toy Cockapoos

Most toy cockapoos come from breeding a cocker spaniel and a toy or miniature poodle, not a standard poodle. That’s why they’re so small. The Standard Cockapoo, however, is usually bred from a standard poodle.


3. Toy Cockapoos Are Incredibly Friendly

There are few breeds as gentle, loving, and affectionate as a toy cockapoo. They get along quite well with small children, other dogs, other animals, and most people.

Image Credit: Marla White, Shutterstock

4. Toy Cockapoos Were Bred To Be Healthy

One of the reasons Toy Cockapoos became so popular is that they are healthier than their parent breeds, the poodle and cocker spaniel. They have fewer congenital health problems and require fewer vet trips. Toy Cockapoos also cause fewer health problems for their pet parent since they’re more or less hypoallergenic.


5. Toy Cockapoos Usually Live a Long Life

One of the benefits of being a designer breed is that  Toy Cockapoos have fewer congenital health problems than their parent breeds. For that reason, they tend to live longer, from 14 to 16 years on average.


6. Swimming Is in a Toy Cockapoo’s Nature

Like Cocker Spaniels and Poodles, Toy Cockapoos have a natural affinity for water. Most will gladly join you for a swim in a lake or at the beach, although care must be taken in the ocean as a strong wave could overwhelm a Toy Cockapoo’s tiny body.


7. Adopting a Toy Cockapoo Isn’t Cheap

Unfortunately, Toy Cockapoos are one of the most expensive breeds and can run between $900 and $1,500. However, they occasionally show up in shelters and dog pounds, so it might behoove you to check yours before paying an exorbitant price.

brown cockapoo puppy in the garden
Image Credit: Lee Ph, Shutterstock

Does a Toy Cockapoo Make a Good Pet?

Toy Cockapoos make excellent pets for pet parents of all ages! For example, they’re a perfect choice for first-time dog owners because they’re easy to train and handle. They’re calm, affectionate, full of energy, and will be the perfect playmate for school-age children.

A Toy Cockapoo will also be a great choice if you live in an apartment, as they don’t need vast amounts of exercise and bark less than most dog breeds. No matter who you are or your living situation, owning a Toy Cockapoo is low-stress and low-maintenance. They shed very little, are almost 100% hypoallergenic, and are a lot of fun to be around.

One of the few drawbacks of being a Toy Cockapoo parent is that they tend to be clingy. When you’re home, your dog will follow you everywhere (even in the bathroom). Besides this one minor drawback, most people who adopt one of these precious dogs are delighted with their decision.

Final Thoughts

The Toy Cockapoo is a delightful “designer” breed of dog that will make a fantastic friend and great companion. They will do well in various home settings, from a single person in an apartment to a big, noisy home with kids and other pets. Toy Cockapoos are easy to train, highly intelligent, and love to cuddle. For all these reasons and many more, Toy Cockapoos have become a popular dog breed in many parts of the world.

We hope the information presented today answered all your questions about the Toy Cockapoo and gave you the insight you were looking for on this breed. If you’ve just adopted a Toy Cockapoo or will soon, we wish you all the best for a life filled with joy and happiness with your furry new friend!


Featured Image Credit: Bartlomiej Rybacki, Shutterstock

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