Are you so smitten with Goldendoodles that you can’t get enough of their cute appearances and piercing puppy eyes?
Then you may wonder if Goldendoodles are a good choice for first-time owners or what’s good and bad about them.
Fortunately, we’re here to help with our ultimate guide on Goldendoodles.
Goldendoodle 101: The Ultimate Guide
Groodle or Goldendoodle is a designer breed, meaning that it’s a mix between two purebred dogs. Can you guess which ones?
Don’t worry. We’re not going to keep you in suspense.
Still, there’s much to learn about Goldendoodles if you think about adopting one. But that’s why we’re here to talk about the good and bad sides of this adorable Doodle breed.
Goldendoodle History and Origin
Compared to other purebred and mixed breeds, the Goldendoodle is relatively new. It was created in the 1990s after other “Doodle” breeds gained popularity.
Breeders wanted a larger variant of the Cockapoo (Poodle and Cocker Spaniel mix) and replaced Cocker Spaniel with a Golden Retrievers as one of the parent breeds.
That’s not such a strange choice. People have always wanted a dog with the personality of a Golden Retriever, but without all the fur they shed around the house.
Since the Goldendoodle is a “new” designer breed, most puppies are first-generation crossing, born from a Poodle and a Golden Retriever parent.
Multigeneration breedings between pairs of Goldendoodles are still rare, which is why there are no established breed standards.
Moreover, most breed clubs, such as the American Kennel Club, don’t recognize Goldendoodles or other hybrid breeds.
Still, you can register your puppy with the Goldendoodle Association of North America.
Since Groodles are a mixed dog, they can take after either parent when it comes to size and weight.
In general, Golden Retrievers are large dogs with an average height of 21-23 inches and a weight of 55-75 pounds.
The Standard Poodle is also a big animal with an average height of 22 inches and a weight of 60 pounds.
However, Poodles also come in toy and miniature and can be as tall as 10 inches and as light as six pounds. That’s why the Goldendood’s size can vary greatly.
That’s a plus for people who love the breed but don’t have the space or the time to raise a large dog.
We can distinguish the following sizes, as specified by the Goldendoodle Association of North America:
- Petite Goldendoodle, below 14 inches in height and approximately 25 lb or less in weight
- Miniature Goldendoodle, between 14 and 17 inches in height and between 26-35 pounds
- Medium Goldendoodle, between 17 and 21 inches with a weight of 36-50 lbs
- Standard Goldendoodle, over 21 inches in height and over 51 pounds in weight
Unfortunately, breeders can only give you an estimated guess of how big your Goldendoodle puppy will be, depending on the size of the Poodle parent.
You should be prepared that your puppy might grow bigger or smaller than the initial calculations.
Goldendoodles come in a variety of coat colors and patterns. They can be creamy, apricot, red, black, copper, and golden, among a few.
In general, the coat is wavy or curly, with long hair on most of the body and a shorter one on the head. Some dogs also have “feathers” around the legs.
Despite its looks, the coat is low-shedding and requires minimal brushing and grooming to keep it tangle-free. That’s why they’re such excellent dogs for people with allergies.
Designer dogs can have the temperament of either parent or a unique combination of both.
To understand better what character traits Goldendoodles can inherit, let’s take a closer look at Poodles and Golden Retrievers.
Do you know that Poodles are one of the five most intelligent dog breeds? They can master commands and perform tricks after very few repetitions.
And while Poodles have an air of dignity around them and look pampered, they aren’t a lazy breed at all. In fact, they were bred to retrieve waterfowl for hunters.
As such, Poodles are energetic, lively, and sociable. They’re very sensitive to their owner’s moods and don’t handle being alone very well.
Poodles also need plenty of physical and mental stimulation. Otherwise, these friendly dogs find other destructive ways to entertain themselves.
While Golden Retrievers are popular companion dogs, they’re a working breed with high exercise needs. They like to have a job, no matter how trivial it might be.
Moreover, Golden Retrievers are family dogs. They are miserable when not around their family and demand to be included in everything the family does.
Golden Retrievers also get along well with children, pets, and strangers, which is why they make poor watchdogs.
And despite their mellow temperament, Golden Retrievers still need plenty of obedience training to harness their energy and intellect.
Since Golden Retrievers and Poodles are so social and friendly, it’s no wonder that Goldendoodles have such a charming personality.
They’re loyal, playful, and friendly to everybody they meet, be it a family member or a stranger. They also get along with other dogs, pets, and children.
Thanks to their eagerness to please and need for attention, it’s easy to train Goldendoodles with positive reinforcement. They’re an A-plus student, always ready to learn something new.
Goldendoodles are also smart, sensitive, and gentle. They’re perfect as service animals, emotional support dogs, and therapy dogs.
These Golden Retriever – Poodle mix dogs can be a great choice for a novice owner, thanks to their mellow temperament, high trainability, and acceptable nature.
However, any owners should consider the following “bad” sides:
- Goldendoodles attach strongly to their humans. Expect that your dog will follow you like a shadow and expect to be involved in everything you do.
- They’re prone to separation anxiety and need to be close to the family all the time.
- While Groodles can adapt to apartment living, they do best in a home with a yard, where they can burn off their energy.
- They can get overly excited when meeting new people and forge their manners.
In general, Goldendoodles are healthy dogs with an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years.
But they’re still prone to several inherited conditions and genetic diseases, despite their “hybrid vigor.”
If you’re buying/adopting, you should ask to see health clearances for:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia, a common condition in many small and large breed
- Hypothyroidism, a metabolic disorder in which the thyroid doesn’t produce enough hormones
- Von Willebrand’s disease, a bleeding disorder
- Retinal atrophy and other eye diseases from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation
Other potential health issues include patellar luxation, bloat, ear infections, and allergies. Dental issues are also widespread in all dog breeds.
To ensure you get a healthy puppy, always buy from a respectable breeder. Avoid puppy mills at all costs! They often sell sick puppies full of fleas and parasites.
We recommend that you insist on meeting the puppy and its parents before buying. It’s a huge red flag if the breeder won’t let you see the living conditions or the puppy.
Of course, whenever possible, try to adopt instead of buy. While Goldendoodles are a popular designer breed, you can still find some in local shelters and rescues.
At first glance, the Goldendoodle might seem like a high-maintenance breed with its curly coat. But as you’ll find out, looks can be deceiving.
Unlike Golden Retrievers who shed everywhere, Groodles are a low-shedding breed. So, you won’t be spending hours getting dog hair out of the carpet or the furniture.
The Goldendoodle’s wavy/curly coat needs a good brushing once a week to keep it mat-free. But you can opt to clip it short and groom it every few weeks. Not hard at all, right?
Moreover, Groodles don’t require frequent baths. Specialists recommend that you bathe your dog only if necessary because regular baths strip the coat from its natural oils.
Besides grooming, you should inspect your Groodle’s ears weekly and clean the outer ear with a cotton ball to prevent infections.
You also need to brush your Goldendoodlés teeth at least 2-3 times a week and clip their toenails 1-2 times a month.
In general, adult Goldendoodles require about one to four cups of high-quality dog food. But you might have to adjust the diet based on your dog’s activity level and age.
Since Golden Retrievers are prone to bloat, small meals are better than big ones, and you shouldn’t leave food available all the time.
Moreover, make sure that you don’t overfeed your Goldendoodles since these dogs love to eat as much as their Golden Retriever parent.
Talk to your vet to create the best possible meal plan for your Goldendoodle and opt for a high-quality dog brand that suits your dog’s age and lifestyle.
As we already mentioned, Goldendoodles are A-plus students. They’re intelligent and eager to please, so you can get them to learn anything with enough practice.
Start training your puppy as soon as possible, and always use positive reinforcement to turn training into something your dog looks forward to.
Avoid punishments. Groodles are sensitive dogs and can become withdrawn and lose confidence if you’re too harsh.
Think about a puppy training class if you’re having troubles with potty training your Goldendoodle or getting them to obey your commands.
Like all dogs, Goldendoodle puppies require extensive socialization to grow into confident adults.
Expose your puppy to as many sights and stimuli as possible and make it a positive experience. It’s vital that your puppy doesn’t have any negative meetings with other dogs, children, and pets.
Think about puppy kindergarten/obedience school. It’s an excellent way for your puppy to learn manners and how to act around other dogs.
Without enough socialization, Groodles are likely to remain shy and timid. That’s not a good thing because it can lead to aggression.
In general, Goldendoodles aren’t the most energetic dogs, but they’re not couch potatoes. You should provide at least 20 to 30 minutes of exercise per day to prevent boredom.
Goldendoodles also require mental stimulation, or they find something creative to do around the house. Add puzzle toys, stuff mats, and chew toys to their daily exercise.
Goldendoodles also love water and won’t say no to a water game of fetch or a trip to the beach.
It’s important to spay/ neuter your Goldendoodle when they’re old enough. It reduces the risk of tumors and aggression.
Moreover, fixed Goldendoodles won’t be looking for a way to escape when they’re in heat or other intact animals are around.
Depending on your dog’s weight, you can spay/ neuter them:
- Between 4 and 6 months, for animals less than 45 pounds
- Between 5 and 15 months for animals over 50 pounds.
All puppies should be vaccinated to avoid dangerous diseases, such as parvovirus. Until that happens, don’t allow your puppy to interact with adult dogs (usually until 12-16 weeks).
Regular vet exams and dewormings are also a must to ensure that your puppy/adult dog is healthy.
You probably have tons of other questions about Goldendoodles, and we’ll do our best to answer some of them.
Are Goldendoodles Good Guard Dogs?
Groodles aren’t the best guard dogs because they’ve got a mellow temperament, friendly disposition, and aren’t suspicious towards strangers.
A Goldendoodle is likely to meet intruders with a wagging tail and show them around the house. So, don’t count on them to watch out for intruders or bark when someone knocks on the door.
Do Goldendoodles Get Along with Other Pets?
In general, Goldendoodles are friendly, social, and easy-going. They get along with everybody, including dogs and pets.
Still, to ensure that your Groodle is comfortable around other small animals, you should socialize them well when young.
Exposure to different stimuli and triggers ensures your puppy will mature into a mellow adult dog, not fear every unusual sight and sound.
Are Goldendoodles Hypoallergenic?
Goldendoodles have a low-shedding coat, which makes them an excellent family pet for people with allergies.
However, no breed is truly “hypoallergenic” because all dogs shed protein in their dander, saliva, and urine, regardless of their coat type. Some dogs just shed less than others.
Allergy sufferers should spend some time around a Goldendoodle to judge how strong the allergic reaction could be.
How Much Do Goldendoodle Puppies Cost?
In general, you can expect to pay between $1000 to $2500 for a Goldendoodle puppy from a respectable breeder.
That’s because the demand for this hybrid dog is high and reputable breeders can’t keep up with it without endangering their purebred parent breeds.
You can find a Goldendoodle for around $500 from irresponsible breeders. But as we pointed out, you risk a puppy with an inherited condition and likely won’t get health clearance.
What’s Better Goldendoodle or Labradoodle?
Labradoodles are a mix between Poodles and Labrador Retrievers. They’re very similar to Goldendoodles but are bigger and more energetic, active, and suspicious towards strangers.
Which one is better depends on what type of dog you want and your lifestyle. But both breeds aren’t the best apartment dogs due to their energy levels.
They’re Pretty Great!
Goldendoodles are a hybrid dog breed, perfect for active families, families with children, and single people. These dogs are goofy, smart, gentle, and can excel at any job you give them.
However, Goldendoodles can be energetic, excitable, and overly attached. They need proper training to counteract shyness and clinginess.
But since they’re smart and eager to please, even first-time dog owners shouldn’t have much trouble with training.