Is the Goldendoodle a Good Pet Dog?

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Facts about the Goldendoodle as a pet. Is this the right dog for you, and some points about the ethics of breeding or buying such a dog, or puppy. What is a Goldendoodle? Are Golden doodles non-shedding? Why do some people not like the Goldendoodle?

Some people consider the Goldendoodle to be a high priced mutt, others consider them to be a dream dog. What is it really?

The short version of what a Goldendoodle is, is that it is the name of a dog that is the result of crossing a Golden Retriever with a poodle. As poodles come in different sizes, so do Goldendoodles. As well, they may not always be golden.

There have been crosses between Golden Retrievers and Poodles long before the catchy name “Goldendoodle” was assigned to them in the year 2000. The name, Golden doodle, can be written as one word, or two.

World wide there are vast differences of opinion on these dogs, while the American, and Canadian, dog clubs frown on the intentional breeding of mutts, the Australian clubs seem to welcome this cross, even accepting it as a breed.

golden doodle

photo source 5 month old pup

The promoted advantages of these dogs is that they are non-shedding, and as crosses, should have fewer health problems. However neither if these is entirely true.

Because they are crosses, many Goldendoodles do shed. Breeders may select, and destroy, pups that exhibit the shedding factor, and only keep those that do not shed. As well they are prone to hip dysplasia and eye problems. In fact because many “breeders” use low quality animals in their breeding programs for this dog, Goldendoodles may be more prone to such problems than a well bred purebred of either breed.

To understand the difference between low quality animals and top quality animals, one must understand how the dog world works. Reputable breeders only have purebred animals, they take their animals to shows where they are judged on performance (retrieving ability) or conformation. Dogs that earn championship titles are taken to a vet for genetic testing against problems such as hip dysplasia and genetic eye problems.

Only then do reputable breeders breed their dogs, and to an equally qualified dog of the same breed. A reputable breeder would never bred to a dog of an other breed, knowing that they can get better money for breeding quality purebreds. As well their whole motivation behind breeding, and showing, their dogs, is to improve the breed. As such we learn that it is the “other” breeders – the ones with lower quality dogs, that start intentionally breeding crosses.

The dogs themselves can be anywhere from 15 pounds to 70 pounds, tending to be a bit closer in size to that of their mother.

While most are “Golden” in color, they can also be black, white, cream, red, and apricot.

Their coat can be curly, wavy, or straight, and may, or may not shed. All will require regular grooming, with the non-shedding dogs needing regular hair cuts. If neglected their coats will form painful mats which may require the dog to be shaved for removal.

Their temperament is generally good, but they are intelligent dogs and if not given proper mental stimulation they may become bored and destructive.

As both breeds were intended to be used for hunting, and specifically retrieving birds, Goldendoodles enjoy carrying toys in their mouth, and love swimming.


photo source

If you are considering buying a Goldendoodle do your research first.

If the parents were not taken to any shows to prove their worth as breeding animals, and have not been tested for genetic problems (they would have certificate such as the CERF for eye tests, this is more than a regular veterinarian check up), they are not worth the high price tags generally assigned to them. Their breeder has invested very little to ensure they are breeding quality dogs and are simply out to make a profit.

Occasionally animal shelters and rescue groups get Goldendoodles and will adopt them out for a fee that is often considerably lower than what most “breeders” charge.

Never pay a cent for a dog who has not been seen by a vet, vaccinated, and dewormed.

Get a written health guarantee for any dog/pup you are paying for.

Since (at the time of this writing) there is no registration available you really have no way of knowing if the dog you are buying is really what they tell you it is.  It should go without saying, but "Buyer Beware".

Never buy any puppy from a pet store.

Related Links

About Mutts, Designer, and Purebred Dogs

How to Select the Right Dog

11 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Getting a Dog

How to Help your Dog Live a Healthy and Long Life


Posted on Jan 30, 2012
Erik Van Tongerloo
Posted on Apr 22, 2010
Posted on Apr 21, 2010