These are large, versatile and personable dogs that are generally nicely natured as well as distinctive looking, and every year, thousands of dog lovers in the UK fall for the Goldendoodle’s charms and start to wonder if they could fit one into their families.
Goldendoodles have a huge number of good points and are a great fit for many different types of owners, but like any dog, they won’t suit everyone; and finding out if this would be a good choice of dog for you is vital before you go out and find one offered for sale.
With this in mind, this article will tell you ten things you need to know about the Goldendoodle before you buy one, to help you to get started with your research. Read on to learn more.
As indicated, this makes the Goldendoodle itself a hybrid dog type or cross breed, and not a pedigree. Goldendoodles may have one parent from each of these two founding breeds, or be bred of later-generation dogs bred from this original crossing.
The Goldendoodle’s non-pedigree status means they’re not recognised by the Kennel Club, aren’t eligible for Kennel Club registration, and have no formal breed standard in place.
Golden retrievers are objectively large dogs, and poodles come in three sizes, being toy, miniature and standard respectively.
Given the size difference between the golden retriever and the toy poodle, it is almost always a miniature or standard poodle used in the crossing of breeds used to produce a Goldendoodle, but this does result in a high degree of variation in the potential size for any Goldendoodle themselves.
Also, it is not always evident when choosing a puppy how large they might grow to, particularly if you cannot see both of their parents with them rather than just their dam.
This means that if you pick a Goldendoodle, be aware their adult size might fall along quite a large spectrum!
The golden retriever coat and that of the poodle are very different, and most Goldendoodles will have a coat that falls somewhere in the middle – a little shorter and more wavy than the average golden retriever, but looser and longer than the typical tight poodle curls.
Also, the golden retriever is one of the most heavily shedding of dog breeds, whereas the poodle barely sheds at all, and once more, the Goldendoodle itself can vary along a wide spectrum in terms of how much mess they make with their coats!
Goldendoodle breeders generally try to produce breed lines that have coats that are low shedding in common with their poodle ancestry, and so that look and behave more like poodle coats or something in the middle of the spectrum rather than falling on the golden retriever side.
This is because a low shedding coat is easier to care for and clean up after and so, in greater demand; and also because it is less likely to result in the triggering of allergy symptoms in people who are usually sensitive to them.
However, there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog, an the Goldendoodle should not be thought of as such.
Both of the Goldendoodle’s parent breeds are highly intelligent. Out of a total number of 138 dog breeds ranked from the smartest to the dumbest on the widely used Coren scale of canine intelligence, the poodle falls in 2nd place overall and the golden retriever in 4th; so one trait that you generally can rely on from the Goldendoodle hybrid crossing is high intelligence!
This means that Goldendoodles can usually learn and retain a huge range of commands, exhibit many skills, and perform a large number of working roles.
They are even sometimes bred with the goal of being used as assistance dogs, in order to produce a dog with all of the necessarily skills and smarts, with a low-allergen coat in specific breed lines.
One thing to note about the Goldendoodle once more based on the shared traits of both of their parent breeds is that this is a very highly energetic breed that needs a lot of exercise and stimulation. They require at least two hour long walks each day in order to thrive, failing which they will be unhappy and may become destructive.
Crossing two unrelated breeds brings with it the benefits of hybrid vigour, but deliberate Goldendoodle breeding programmes and the combination of health issues that can be found within both parent breeds mean that this is no guarantee of good health.
Despite their crossbreed status, the Goldendoodle has elevated risk factors for a number of hereditary health conditions, including elbow and hip dysplasia, a range of different eye disorders, and quite a broad spectrum of other issues too.
Research Goldendoodle health in detail before you begin shopping around, so that you know what questions to ask breeders you are considering buying from.
The Goldendoodle is highly personable, very intelligent, lively, fun loving and generally good company, and they get on well with both other dogs and people and are generally welcoming of newcomers and unphased by new situations.
This means that if you lead an active lifestyle and are keen to get a dog that you can involve in a lot of different parts of your life, the Goldendoodle might well be a good fit.
The Goldendoodle also tends to get on very well with children of all ages, and they are often particularly keen to play with children and have a particular soft spot for them.
Once more, this makes the Goldendoodle a great fit for families that like to stay active, involve the dog, and even take their dog on holidays with them.
There are a huge number of good points to Goldendoodles, which helps to ensure they’re popular with people from all walks of life.
However, the variables inherent to their hybrid status means that you need to be fully informed before choosing a dog of this type, and you also need to be able to provide enough exercise and mental stimulation to what is a large, active and very smart dog type too, which means that the Goldendoodle is not for everyone!