The Labradoodle is a fairly recent breed of dog that is the result of a cross between a Labrador and a Poodle. This hybrid breed is very popular because it allows for a dog with a hypoallergenic coat (thanks to the Poodle) with the qualities of another breed (here the Labrador).
The breed is not recognized by the International Canine Federation, but the International Australian Labradoodle Association is working to bring order to this breed.
History Of The Labradoodle
The origin of the Australian Labradoodle dates back to the mid-1970s. It is said that a blind woman living in Hawaii sent a letter to the Australian Guide Dog Association asking, “Are there any guide dogs that do not cause allergies ?”
To create an allergy-free service dog, the Australian Guide Dog Association crossed a smart and well-trained Labrador Retriever with a Standard Poodle with less hair loss and body odor, and the first breed was named “LABRADOR-POODLE“.
Like all “Doodle” breeds ( Goldendoodle, Yorkipoo, Cockapoo, etc.), the idea is to cross a breed with a Poodle to obtain hypoallergenic subjects (since this is the main virtue of the Poodle) capable of helping people with physical or mental disabilities allergic to animal hair.
Labradoodle Physical Characteristics
- Size: a Labradoodle can measure between 13 and 23 inches at the withers.
- Weight: a Labradoodle can weigh between 13 and 66 lbs.
- Color: if we consider the coat colors of the Poodle and Labrador, we can have subjects of brown (light or dark), black (light or dark), sand, apricot, fawn, etc.
- Coat: the possibilities are endless, the Labradoodle can have a long or short coat, stiff or curly, coarse or soft.
- Hair maintenance: depending on the Labradoodle’s coat variety, maintenance will be more or less important. In all cases, brushing at least weekly will be necessary.
- Longevity (life expectancy): It lives on average 12 to 14 years.
- These dogs are separated into three varieties: miniature, medium, and standard.
Height at the withers
Miniature: From 14 to 16 inches
Medium: From 17 to 20 inches
Standard: From 21 to 24 inches
These data are approximate. Males are generally larger than females.
Miniature: From 16 to 25 pounds
Medium: From 30 to 40 pounds
Standard: From 50 to 65 pounds
These data are approximate. Males are generally heavier than females.
The Character Of The Labradoodle
This dog is still little known, so the breed is not yet completely stabilized because of the big differences that still exist according to the selections and the breedings. Temperaments can therefore be considerably different depending on the litters, selections, and breeders.
Nevertheless, although they are, in fact, potentially unpredictable dogs due to the non-fixation of the breed, one can imagine that the Labradoodle can be a gentle, intelligent, affectionate, and very dynamic dog at the same time, like of both parents.
The many abilities and qualities of both parents (Poodle and Labrador) make this dog an animal predestined to assist disabled people. It is for this unique reason that its creator, Wally Conron, decided to create this hybrid breed: to allow disabled people allergic to dog hair to still be able to be accompanied by a service dog.
Unfortunately, many drifts have already been observed and the aesthetic aspect was more privileged to correspond to the demand of individuals, to the detriment of a thoughtful selection to obtain the best subjects of work.
Many Labradoodles are active as “therapy dogs” that rehabilitate the human mind because they are smart and mild-mannered and because they do not easily lose their hair and have little body odor.
The Labradoodle is not a difficult dog to train if you have the right manners. The education of Labrador can begin as early as 2 months and the exercises to be worked are mainly walking on a leash, recall, teaching It to do things slowly, and to wait. Your dog, to be in a good learning context, will have to meet Its peers regularly and will have to be spent mentally and physically regularly.
Personality and Temperament
If trained properly, this dog can make a great family dog. This affectionate, energetic, and social dog requires a lot of exercise due to its high energy levels. The dog has the intelligence of its parents because both of its parents are considered some of the most intelligent breeds in the world.
To ensure that your Labradoodle is behaving well, you must provide obedience training. Labradoodles love to play and are the happiest animals when they are with someone in the family who can play with them.
The temperament of a labradoodle can be affected by various factors such as training, heredity, socialization, etc. Normally, a Labradoodle is friendly, cheerful, and expresses Its happiness to the people who accompany it.
Whether you want to make sure your puppy has a good temperament or not, meeting a Bichon Frize parent can help. You should also expose your puppy to different experiences and environments to ensure that your puppy has full growth.
Living Conditions Of The Labradoodle
Apartment living: possible.
As is the case for many dogs, living in an apartment is only possible if regular outings during the day are offered, and not just walks lasting ten minutes to relieve yourself.
Compatibility with children: possible.
Given the qualities of its parents, the Labradoodle is a breed adapted to family life. Children will be able to play with It and have a good time by its side, but only if they respect their pet to avoid incidents.
Cohabitation with other animals: possible.
Only if a good job of socialization is implemented from an early age. Being able to be unpredictable in nature due to the non-fixing of the breed, it is important to put all the chances on your side to avoid problems during inter and intraspecific encounters.
walks, canicross, agility, obedience, tracking, man trailing, flyball, etc.
The labradoodle’s diet
It should be noted that there is nothing like high quality food for a particular breed of dog. Food that suits one dog may not work well for another dog within the breed. How much your dog eats generally depends on Its age, metabolism, activity level, and build. The general diet for an adult squiggle includes 1 to 2.5 cups of high-quality Kibble a day that can be fed as two meals.
Quality meat is a must for your dog regardless of the food you choose. Croquettes, eggs, meat, healthy leftovers, and canned fish can all help meet nutritional requirements.
Remember not to give It food all the time, as it can lead to health problems. Give it Its food at the same time every day, so the dog knows what time to eat.
Labradoodle’s Exercise Needs
Energetic and playful, the Labradoodle loves to play. The larger dogs of the breed need plenty of regular exercise, which means long walks and room to run. This is a wonderful breed for the active types, so feel free to bring your Labradoodle on your outdoor adventures with you.
And if you live near water, good news: this dog loves water. Swimming can be a great way to burn off all that extra energy. If you have a smaller version, you can live comfortably in a smaller apartment or house, as long as It gets plenty of exercises.
A word of warning: if you leave your dog alone for too long or It doesn’t get enough exercise, it will become destructive and ruin anything in its path. Although this is a generally happy dog, if you don’t give the Labradoodle enough attention or exercise, It will become unhappy and anxious.
The Health Of The Labradoodle
The breed is too recent for any particular pathologies to be observed.
The health problems seen in their parent breeds are likely to affect Labradoodle as well. Being aware of common illnesses that can affect your doodle will help you manage the illness well and thus ensure good dog health.
It is recommended not to buy a puppy from a breeder who cannot guarantee the good health of both parents. If either parent has a disease, chances are high that the puppy could be affected by the disease. The following are the common diseases that can affect your doodle:
- Ear Infections – floppy squiggle ears are the reason for ear infections in this breed. The shape of their ears is responsible for trapping moisture and causing infection.
- Hip Dysplasia: It is an abnormality of the hip socket that causes lameness and arthritis in dogs.
- Elbow Dysplasia: is a degenerative disease caused by abnormal growth and development of the elbow joint. Weight control, anti-inflammatory medications, and surgery are possible treatments.
- Epilepsy: Canine epilepsy is inherited in most cases. This is a neurological condition. Falling, unconsciousness, and stiff limbs are often signs of epilepsy in dogs.
- Allergies: Food allergies, contact allergies, and inhalant allergies are the most common allergies in Labradoodle. Allergies can be treated through dietary restrictions, environmental changes, and sometimes medications.
- Diabetes mellitus: is a condition in which the beta cells of the endocrine pancreas limit or stop the production of insulin. Insulin therapy can help treat the disease.
- Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA): This disease is similar to retinitis pigmentosa in humans. The disease involves a slow deterioration of the retina. A dog is blinded at night in the early stage of the disease, followed by complete blindness.
- Hypothyroidism: is a condition in which the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormones. Lethargy, low tolerance to cold, and weight gain are common symptoms. The disease can be treated with medication and diet.
To maximize your chances of fostering a healthy puppy, choose a responsible breeder who tests their breeders for hereditary diseases, and can provide you with that evidence.
labradoodle Grooming and Maintenance
Maintenance varies a bit depending on the type of hair, but in general, it is good to brush your dog at least once a week. Some also prefer to have their dog shorn about every two months. Finally, the bath should not be given more than a few times a year to not damage the natural protection of the skin.
Inspect and clean the ears weekly to reduce the risk of ear infections or other infections, and dry them well after swimming. Maintain claws as needed, brush teeth every two or three days to reduce the risk of oral disease, and clean eyes as needed when dirt or dark circles appear.
Price And Budget Of A Labradoodle
Acquisition cost: the price of a Miniature Poodle can be doubled depending on its origins. Generally, the purchase price of a labradoodle is around $500 to $1500 for a puppy, but some reputable breeders sell their puppies for $3000.
Monthly budget: depending on the size of the Labradoodle (depending on the Poodle chosen for the cross), the monthly budget can range from $ 15 to $ 50 to meet the needs of this dog. while providing It with quality food.
Labradoodle classification (F1, F1B, F2, F3)
Here is the meaning of the classification:
- F1: Dog from the breeding of a poodle and a labrador
- F1B: Dog from the breeding of an F1 labradoodle with a poodle or labrador parent. We often prioritize the poodle to cement the hypoallergenic qualities.
- F2: Dog resulting from the reproduction of two F1
- F3: Dog resulting from the reproduction of two F2
Adopting a Labradoodle From a Breeder
Unfortunately, the strong attraction to “doodle” dogs affects the quality of their genetics. Because of sometimes “industrial” reproduction, it is common to pay a high price for a puppy, and Its temperament does not match expectations! This problem can be avoided if you are careful when choosing the breeder. Here are a few tips :
- Take great care when buying dogs from a classified ad site. It’s a privileged vehicle for puppy mills wishing to “liquidate a large inventory” of puppies.
- Visit the breeder’s (or family’s) facility before purchasing. It is essential that the Labradoodle has enough space to evolve, that it is in constant contact with its humans, and that it is sufficiently stimulated, for example with various toys.
- Make sure that the health of the puppies has been tested against the main genetic defects that can be transmitted. Ask to see these tests or certificates.
- Get referrals from past clients so they can testify how their dog has developed.
- Beware of breeders who seem willing to sell to “anyone”. They probably prioritize money over the well-being of Its puppies.
In summary, the Labradoodle
- Recommended for homes with children
- Much like the Goldendoodle, cockapoo, or morkie, this is a dog that has become very glamorous in recent years. Several ill-intentioned breeders may seek to make an easy shot of money by embarking on a more “industrial” production of these puppies. See the “How to choose a breeder” section to guide your choice.
- It is a dog that some refer to as hypoallergenic, which means that people with allergies will feel more comfortable around it. In general, it loses very little hair. On the other hand, before adopting a hypoallergenic dog, it is better to spend several hours with him to make sure that you will not have an allergic reaction.