The goldendoodle is a hybrid breed -- a combination of two purebred pups designed to capitalize on some of the most appealing characteristics of each. Goldendoodles are popular family pets with their smart, friendly, sometimes goofy personalities. They're easygoing and patient, so they get along well with children.
A Winning Combination
Several breeders began marketing the goldendoodle in the 1990s. The hybrid is a cross between the golden retriever and the standard poodle. The American Kennel Club doesn't currently recognize the goldendoodle, so there's no breed standard for physical characteristics yet. However, the Goldendoodle Association of North America notes some basic standards:
- Hybrid consisting of only the golden retriever and poodle; no other breeds introduced
- The friendly temperament of the golden retriever
- No tail docking
- Removal of dew claws optional
- Physical characteristics a mix of both poodle and golden retriever.
The association also notes that the typical size and coat colors of the goldendoodle. Full-grown goldendoodles average about 21 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh 51 pounds. Goldendoodles have three different coat types: Curly, wavy and flat. The curly coat is similar to that of the poodle; the flat is typical of a golden retriever. The wavy coat is a blend of the two. Colors include:
The Smart, Friendly Goldendoodle
Goldendoodles are sociable animals who prefer to be around people. Dogs often work as service animals and therapy dogs. Their keen sense of smell lends well to tracking and sniffing work.
Goldendoodles are easy to train, but require early socialization to avoid shyness. Take your goldendoodle pup to puppy kindergarten so he'll learn proper puppy manners and meet other young dogs.
Due to their high level of intelligence, goldendoodles need intellectual stimulation to avoid boredom and destructive behavior. Chew toys and smart toys that require manipulation to get a treat work well with this breed.
The Well-Groomed, Healthy Goldendoodle
Goldendoodles are fairly low-maintenance when it comes to grooming. To maintain the oils in their coats, they should have a bath only when they're truly dirty. Otherwise, give your pup a good brushing once a week. Goldendoodles rarely shed.
Trim your pup's nails as needed -- typically about once per month. Clean his ears regularly and check them for infection, indicated by redness and odor.
Choose a reputable breeder when looking for your goldendoodle puppy. The breeder should provide certifications for hip and elbow dysplasia, eye problems and von Willebrand's disease. Other possible health issues include:
- Patellar luxation: dislocated kneecap
- Bloat: caused by eating or drinking too much, too quickly
- Ear infections
Visit your veterinarian for regular health checks and vaccinations.