Wavy, reddish-blonde hair, a playful and friendly attitude, and always up for anything? Sounds like an excellent companion to us. We’re talking about a loveable new mixed or designer breed called the Irish doodle. Talk about luck of the Irish—the people who feel really lucky are those who have these doodles in their homes.
The breed is a relatively new mix, likely created sometime in the last 30 years. And boy, are we glad they were. From their super photogenic fur to their adoration-winning personalities, here are just a few things people who truly love the Irish doodle have memorized by heart.
1. They’re a mix between Irish Setter and Poodle
Irish Setters are known for their striking silky red coats. They traditionally have been used as gun dogs and—in addition to being show and family dogs—still assist hunters today. They top out at around 70 lbs, and have long, floppy ears.
The Poodle, on the other hand, comes in several sizes, from miniatures that can get as small as 15 lbs to standard breeds that get as large as 70 lbs. The Irish doodle tends to be a medium-sized dog, around 40 to 70 lbs depending on the parents.
2. You can go wild with nicknames
There’s not a name under the sun Irish doodle lovers haven’t tried. Whether it’s Irish Doodle Setter, Irish Setterdoodle, Irish Setterpoo, or the hilarious Irish poo setter (great when this doodle squats in an inconvenient place), owners have fun describing their pet’s breed to strangers.
3. They’re smart, but not an alarm dog
Usually, Irish doodle owners don’t have to deal with endless barking. Although the dog gets serious smarts from their Poodle parentage, and an instinct to hunt from both parents, they don’t tend to express these traits through barking. That’s good news for anyone trying to get some peace and quiet—including this dog’s neighbors.
Of course, every dog is unique, and certain Irish Doodles may decide their singing voices absolutely must be heard.
4. You can call them Big Red
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As you may have noticed by now, the Irish Doodle is known for its red coat—but that’s not the only color they come in. Pups can also have a cream or peach tone, and even be fully white and black.
Breeders often price puppies based on the color of their coat, and any mix is possible in a litter.
5. Basically, think of yourself as Sir Grooms-a-lot
Between the Irish doodle’s long, wavy (and sometimes even curly) coat and floppy ears, owners know that this is the kind of hair that requires some real attention. Daily brushing (yes, really) goes a long way to help prevent this pup’s coat from matting, and trimming the hair in their ears can help prevent dirt buildup.
The tradeoff is some of the most luxurious hair to run your fingers through, which, by the way, may lower your blood pressure. Think of all that time at the groomer as an investment in your health.
6. Not the easiest to train, but definitely a scholar
Although this is a smart dog, the Irish Doodle can also be a bit stubborn, which their owners aren’t shy about sharing. You’ll need extra patience and some very good treats to keep their attention.
The trade-off for that stubbornness is that once you figure out how to work together and communicate, you could have fun with this dog in advanced training — think agility courses, therapy dog training, or scent work. They live for a task (both their parent breeds were used for hunting, after all) and they excel at it.
7. Up for an adventure, but no dog treadmill required
While you can totally take the Irish Doodle running, hiking, camping, and on any other fun adventure you can think of, you won’t have to build heavy activity into your everyday life.
A daily, moderate walk will be plenty to keep them happy and well-behaved. But like any dog, they do need some activity to keep them from getting into mischief when they’re left alone for extended periods of time.
8. Good for the sneeze-sensitive
Irish doodles tend to inherit a non-shedding coat from Poodles, and thus are sometimes referred to as “hypoallergenic” dogs.
While no dog is truly hypoallergenic (since the allergen is also in their skin and salivary glands, and all dogs have those), the non-shedding coat might help people with mild allergies. And they’ll definitely help your vacuum.
9. It’s fair to say you’ll be a fan
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Once an Irish Doodle lover, always an Irish Doodle lover. Want to get a mug immortalizing your affection? How about a bib or bumper sticker? Even a tattoo? Understandable. They’re easy dogs to love. Really, there’s nothing better than a little bling to celebrate such a sweet companion.
Featured Image via Instagram@hadley.the.dood