One can’t even say “Labradoodle” without a slight smile. There is nothing more precious than watching a pile of bouncing curly fur have the time of its life. Labradoodles are a joy of many households, allergy-friendly due to their hypoallergenic fur, and have an equal parts rambunctious and affectionate attitude.
The fur of a Labradoodle puppy is always a surprising texture and colour. You never know what you’re going to get! With no breed standard, Labradoodles have been known to be a wide variety of colours and textures with names that remind us of ice cream flavours (caramel cream, anyone?).
Labradoodles, by every standard, are a very new breed. They were created, so to speak, in the 1980s in Victoria, Australia by Wally Conran of Royal Guide Dogs, who wanted a dog that was asthma-friendly with service dog capabilities. In fact, many professional breeders are still modifying what the Labradoodle standards are.
Interestingly, one of the latest additions is the English Cocker Spaniel and American Cocker Spaniel into the mix. This breed is called the Australian Labradoodle, while the “classic” Labradoodle is a Labrador and poodle mix.
Between Graham Norton owning a Labradoodle, and former US Vice President Joe Biden’s Labradoodle, Brother, there’s no shortage of humans who love their doodles. Here are some facts to consider before bringing a Labradoodle puppy home.
|Size||There are three sizes when it comes to the Labradoodle. The miniature range is between 35-40cm (14-16 inches), the medium range is 43-50cm (17-20 inches), and the standards are 53-61cm (21-24 inches). Their weight varies wildly due to their size, anywhere between 7-29kg (15-65 pounds).|
|Breed Characteristics||With a wagging tail and a smile on its face, a Labradoodle is hard to miss. Usually, with curly hair that comes in a wide variety of colours and textures, Labradoodles have expressive wide-set eyes and a compact chest. They are strong and muscular breed, with hypoallergenic fur from the poodle side, and friendly outgoing energy from the Labrador side. This gives them a powerful and confident gait.
|Temperament||Labradoodles are often comical in actions and love to make their owners laugh. They are highly sensitive to humans needs and are often great service dogs because of their abilities to be in tune with their environments. So make sure you stick to positive reinforcement training.|
|Grooming and Health Needs||For most Labradoodle owners, you’ll find quickly that doodles don’t shed often and are very easy to maintain. Due to the various textures, brushing a Labradoodle out once in a while is more to maintain the shine and health of the coat than to help with shedding.
Labradoodles are a generally healthy breed but should be checked for hip and elbow dysplasia, eye disorders, and a bleeding disorder called the von Willebrand’s disease.
|Training||Labradoodles are a very friendly and outgoing breed. That being said, all puppies would benefit from socialisation and training classes to ensure they play safe and fairly.
If you’re thinking about training your Labradoodle to be a service dog, start as early as possible, as these classes can take a while to complete.
|Energy Level||Labradoodles are equal parts energetic and calm. They thrive when they have a job to do as it activates their minds and bodies regularly. They are known to be energetic when free and quiet when handled.|
|Life Span||12-15 years|
Labradoodles were created for a specific purpose. They are meant to be best for people who are allergic to dogs, and love helping their humans out. Even if you’re not getting a Labradoodle to train as a service dog, they need a job to do. If you and your family want a dog to be an integral part of your life, Labradoodles are very helpful and bring a lot of heart into everything they do. Give them the attention they deserve, and they will give you love back tenfold. And if you can’t be around as much as you’d like to be, you can find a local sitter on Rover.com who offers dog boarding and can give your dog all the attention they deserve while you’re gone.
Choosing to adopt or go through a breeder for your new Labradoodle puppy is a personal choice that requires research. Thankfully, there are many resources out there to help you find a rescue or breeder that offers healthy, ethically sourced Labradoodle puppies.
Knowing what you’re in for when you get a Labradoodle puppy is an important step in being a responsible pet owner. Whether you find a responsible breeder or are planning on adopting, it’s up to you to be prepared for an energetic and friendly addition to your household.
Adopting Labradoodle puppies
It may be surprising to know, but adopting a Labradoodle puppy is possible. Most breed rescues report that a majority of their rescue dogs come from individual owner surrender, with the most common reasons being a change in lifestyle or the breed not being right for them. This means that there may be many dogs and puppies out that that are looking for a new forever home.
The main difference between a breeder and a rescue is that a rescue may not always have young puppies to choose from. The benefit, however, is that most are mandated to only adopt out dogs that have been microchipped and spayed/neutered. This means you may end up with a dog that’s already been housebroken, and doesn’t need these common medical procedures. You may also find a Labradoodle mix that has all the traits you want from the breed, but with a little extra thrown in.
Finding a Labradoodle rescue can be as simple as searching the internet.
Finding a Labradoodle breeder
The first step is to do your research. Sadly, there are many puppy mills posing as reputable breeders along with many online scams. Be aware, and reach out to different online forums for conversations about getting your future furry family member.
Be sure to ask questions, make arrangements to meet the parent dogs or mother, and follow your gut. If something seems wrong at a breeder you visit, or the Labradoodle puppy seems to good to be true, there’s likely something going on. The Kennel Club also offers resources for finding a breeder, with fairly strict guidelines on who they let participate.
After you find the right Labradoodle puppy, it’s time to prepare your home! More than just showering love on your new family member, creating a healthy environment for your pup means storing away a few things and purchasing the right kind of food. Here are a few resources to get you started: