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While Labradoodles have earned a reputation as hypoallergenic guide dogs, there’s so much more to this intelligent dog breed. Depending on the individual pooch, they might not show any propensity towards being a service dog or have the right coat type for allergy sufferers. Nonetheless, they always make wonderful family pets because their gentle nature and high energy make them a great addition to active households with young children and other pets.
Read on to find out more about this mixed breed, including information about labradoodle puppy trainability, temperament, socialization and much more.
What Is a Labradoodle?
Labradoodles are designer dogs, which means they’re crossbreeds, sired by two thoroughbred parents: a poodle and Labrador retriever. They’re a relatively young breed of dog, with a kind and loving nature and tons of energy. Their adorable curly fur and expressive faces make you want to cuddle them — and these little guys love nothing more than a good squish.
Children, other dogs and even cats are all friends with Doodles, provided they’re socialized early and trained well. When it comes to teaching them good behavior and tricks, they’re easy to train and love learning. Activity-loving families adore these dogs for their propensity towards sports, and anyone who prefers low-shedding pooch benefits from their wooly or fleecy fur. They’re so cute and come in such a wide range of colors that it makes choosing your new best friend super-hard!
The Labradoodle is an Australian dog breed, first introduced by breeder Wally Conron in 1989. While spearheading the Royal Guide Dogs Association of Australia breeding program, he conducted the crossbreeding of a standard poodle and Labrador retriever in view of it being a hypoallergenic option for blind people. The first example of this type of dog, called Sultan, went to live with a lady in Hawaii, where other breeders saw him as an inspiration.
The Australian Labradoodle Association of America is working hard to incorporate more intergenerational breeding so they can register this type of dog as purebred. Its gentle, obedient and intelligent personality combined with a hypoallergenic coat make it ideal for family members with allergies, but it also makes an excellent service or therapy dog.
The Labrador retriever’s lineage comes from Canadian working dogs, but the breed was first established in the United Kingdom. Poodles, on the other hand, come from Germany. As such, they tend to prefer cooler weather over hot weather — but they’re still one of the more adaptable dog breeds when it comes to temperature.
If your dog does appear to be overheating or struggling with cold weather, there are plenty of steps you can take to ensure they’re comfortable. Make sure they have appropriate bedding, access to shade and shelter and the option to move between indoors and outdoors. Doodles love to swim, so taking them for a dip in the warmer months will bring them lots of joy and help them cool down.
How Long Have Labradoodles Been Around?
Labradoodles are over 30 years old, having been around since 1989. They’re fast gaining popularity, so expect to see more and more of this breed over the coming years.
One of the most appealing things about this breed of dog is its adorable teddy bear-like appearance — which perfectly matches its loving temperament. Due to the fact that there isn’t yet a standard for this breed, characteristics such as coat length and color can vary significantly. They always have a single coat that ranges from straight to curly without a layer of dander.
Labradoodles are some of the most devoted and loving dogs out there. Any adult, child, dog or cat that’s part of the family will benefit from the affection and loyalty of this breed. They’re confident around strangers, and aggression is practically unheard of.
Labradoodles are one of the smartest dog breeds, and they absolutely love to please their pet parents. This is the perfect mix when it comes to puppy training, provided you understand positive reinforcement and dog behavior. If you don’t teach them the right way to do things right off the bat, they’ll quickly pick up bad habits.
Health & Grooming
The average Labradoodle life expectancy is between 12 and 15 years, provided they’re given all the care they need and get the right balance of exercise and food. There are some health issues their parent breeds are susceptible to, but there’s not enough data yet to conclusively say whether Doodles are affected by them or if hybrid vigor plays a role.
Common Health Issues
Labradoodles are generally vibrant and healthy dogs, but they’re not immune to health issues. Some of the conditions to watch out for based on lineage include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Ear infections
- Diabetes mellitus
- Progressive retinal atrophy
Doodles have a variety of coat textures, but in general, they need brushing at least twice a week. Not only does this keep them tangle-free but it also removes excess debris from their coat, keeping them fresh and hygienic. Regularly trim the hair around their eyes and in between their paws to prevent these problem areas from causing irritation.
Pooches with fleece coats tend to have longer fur and benefit the most from going to a professional groomer — although every dog loves getting pampered once in a while.
When you get your new pup, it’ll already be on a feeding schedule. It’s important that you stick to it as closely as possible, using the same food. At Pride and Prejudoodles, we send a can and a bag of the foods we use for free with your hand-delivered bundle of joy. If you need to change it for any reason, it must be done gradually to avoid stomach upsets. In case it does experience problems, it’s best to revert to the original diet and consult with a vet about making any changes.
Older dogs won’t necessarily have a problem with switching food because it’s rare they’ll be fussy about food. As their pet parent, it’s up to you to decide how much to invest in diet. Just bear in mind that a diet is such a crucial aspect of wellness that feeding them good quality food will add years to their lives compared to opting for low-quality feed.
What’s the Difference Between Labradoodles and Goldendoodles?
Labradoodles are a cross between a standard poodle and a Labrador retriever, whereas Goldendoodles are a mix of a poodle and a golden retriever. Golden retrievers are hunting dogs from Scotland, while Labrador retrievers have their origins in Canada. They’re both very active and friendly, but the latter is slightly easier to groom. On the other hand, some people say golden retrievers are even more affectionate than the super-loving Labrador.
Find Your New Best Friend
If you’re ready to begin one of the most rewarding relationships of your life, visit Pride and Prejudoodles today.