Types of Doodles
A “doodle” refers to a poodle cross. This phrase is often used because the doodle suffix is used to denote the poodle genes in the mix; for example, there are Labradoodles and Goldendoodles.
That said, you also can get a range of other types of poodle cross that don’t have “doodle” or “oodle” in the name. Often these use the “poo” part of the word for the portmanteau instead, as is the case with the “Cavapoo,” the “Cockapoo,” or the “Shihpoo.”
In this post, we’re going to explore the different types of doodles, why they’re increasingly popular, and why you should definitely consider them if you’re looking for a loyal, friendly, and highly practical pet.
UNDERSTANDING POODLE CROSS BREEDS
The first thing to address is precisely what a poodle cross breed is and how they operate.
In short, a poodle cross breed is a breed of dog that has been mixed with poodle. Normally, the name will reflect this by being a portmanteau of the two breeds involved. For instance, a Labradoodle is a combination of a Labrador and a Poodle combined into a single pet. The mother might be the Poodle and the Labrador the father, or it may be the other way around.
At any rate, the resulting dog will have traits from each parent. What’s less certain though is whether the traits will be predominantly from one parent or the other, or which traits will come from which side.
This means that most cross breeds will have an inherent amount of variability. So while it’s true that many Poodle cross breeds have curly fur, it’s also true that many won’t – even within the same litter! That’s because they might have inherited their fur from their Labrador parent, or their Schnauzer parent.
This is something to keep in mind when considering your dog. Many people choose their Poodle cross breeds because of specific desirable traits – such as their intelligence or their lack of molting. But when you consider that not every example of the breed is going to have those traits, you realize that this is something you need to check very carefully because you invest! Always go and see the litter and make sure that the dog offers the combination of traits you’re looking for.
And if you want to be extra sure, then you can always look for a multi-generational dog instead. Essentially, a Poodle cross can be first generation, second generation, and so on. This denotes just how many Poodle parents they have.
So if you have a Labrador and a Poodle and they have offspring, these will be Labradoodles and they will be first generation Labradoodles – they are the first of their kind in their family tree.
But if you were to take two first generation Labradoodles and they were to have puppies, these would then be second generation Labradoodles. And so on.
The more generations in you go, the more certain you can be that your dog is going to have the qualities that are traditionally associated with that cross. That means that you’re much more likely to have a non-shedding, curly haired dog if they are a 5 th generation Labradoodle rather than a 1 st generation Labradoodle.
Another thing to consider when choosing your Poodle cross is the size of the dog that was used. Poodles come in three different sizes, those being:
Toy Poodles are tiny and only just bigger than the palm of your hands. They are often more practical as a result as they are easy to scoop up if you notice danger near a road, and because they require a little less food and are capable of doing less damage. At the same time though, they tend to get underfoot more easily and they are also more prone to getting easily hurt.
Miniature Poodles are essentially the “mid-range” size of poodle.
The standard size is the largest size of Poodle. These are very large dogs that come past your waist.
They’re also rather muscular and athletic, which means they have a lot of energy to burn off! If you like larger dogs for their hug-ability though, or for their protection, then this might well be the breed of choice for you.
Again then, make sure you enquire as to this point before you make your purchase – or you could be in for quite a surprise if your dog is much larger or smaller than you anticipated!
With all that said, let’s take a look at some of the most common types of poodle cross.
The Labradoodle is a cross between a Poodle and a Labrador. The result is a pet that is as energetic, fun, and playful as a Labrador, but as smart and docile as a Poodle.
Labradoodles are the result of two highly intelligent dogs (which you will see is something of a theme going forward). This means that they are themselves incredibly smart, and that means that they can be trained very effectively too. It’s not uncommon to see Labradoodles being used in a range of service or aid roles in fact. For instance, Labradoodles are very popular as guide dogs for those with allergies.
This actually highlights one of the biggest benefits of all Poodle crosses – the fact that they are very often free of shedding. That in turn means that they don’t trigger allergies, and it also means that they won’t leave fine hairs all over your floor and your furniture. Both these things make the Labradoodle a highly appealing choice for a lot of people. Combine that with their lack of shedding and you have a dog that is excellent for helping people with health problems.
Labradoodles are generally a bundle of fun. They are highly energetic and playful, very loyal, and smart enough to be trained easily and to learn a range of games. They get on well with children and with pets, and they aren’t prone to particular health problems. Their size also makes them a good fit for older owners and anyone who may have had a history of tripping over their dogs in the past!
The Australian Labradoodle is probably not what you might be expecting. If you were expecting this to be a Labradoodle that simple hails from Australia, then things are not quite that simple!
Rather, what we have here is a Labrador and Poodle cross (just like the Labradoodle) but one that has been crossed a few more times and with a little more care and attention.
Remember what we said earlier about the different generations of Poodle crosses? And about the different traits that any given example of a breed could exhibit? Well, this is something that a lot of people see as a negative. After all, if you are planning on investing in a Labradoodle precisely because you need a dog that won’t shed – then you kind of need assurance that this will be the case.
That’s precisely what you can accomplish with an Australian Labradoodle, simply because they are multigenerational examples of Labradoodles and they have other breeds interwoven into their genetic makeup. In other words, these are carefully bred and selected to offer the traits that a lot of people look for in the breed.
An Australian Labradoodle can be relied on to definitely not shed, and is consistently going to be the same height and size and temperament. Like their relatives, they are very smart, very friendly, great with kids and other animals, and generally excellent choices for a wide variety of different kinds of people.
The Goldendoodle is simply a Golden Retriever crossed with a Poodle. This results in a dog that is somewhat similar in appearance and behavior to the Golden Retriever. These are once again very smart dogs that are full of energy and a lot of fun. They are average-to-large sizes and they have curly hair that falls over their eyes in a mop. They are typically going to be free from shedding, but like all crosses, this can vary a little from case to case – so make sure that you check before you buy.
The Schnoodle is a cross between a Schnauzer and a Poodle. These are dogs with many of the same appeals as the other crosses we have looked at so far: they are friendly, they are smart, they often don’t molt, and they like people.
Schnoodles are interesting because they tend to have a lot of variety even compared with other cross breeds. That means that they come in a range of different sizes and a range of different colors. Their hair may not shed, but you can’t take this as a given, as it won’t always be true.
Common traits though are their particularly impressive smarts, their uniquely shaped heads, and their general good nature – all things to look for. And because they’re so varied, that actually makes the Schnoodle a good dog to get in many cases; you just have to find the right individual for you!
The Cockapoo is a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle. The result is a small-ish dog (around shin height) that doesn’t shed, but has long wavy fur, and that is a whole lot of fun. These dogs have big floppy ears and great personalities – they are constantly wanting to play and are very much “people dogs” who like to be with their families.
Cocker Spaniels are known for being fun loving and friendly, while the Poodle is smart and low dander. Again, these are two highly desirable traits – and especially when combined with the highly cute looks of this breed.
Do keep in mind that these dogs don’t like being left alone and can be considered a little needy. With that in mind, they aren’t a good choice for working professionals or those who travel a lot.
The Cavapoo is a cross between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Poodle. The result is very similar to the Cockapoo in size and appearance, and also somewhat in terms of their personalities. They are often described as having “exceptional temperaments,” which describes their particularly kind natures. They are very good with children and other animals, and they are great with families in general. They are very intelligent again, though it is generally thought that they respond better to gentle encouragement rather than harsh discipline. They only require moderate exercise, they are particularly robust with good health, and they don’t need as much attention as Cockapoos. In general, this makes them “low maintenance” dogs and that means they’re also suitable for busier types.
BUT WAIT… THERE’S MORE!
Believe it or not, we’re only just scratching the surface of all the different types of Poodle crosses! Other
- The Maltipoo
And many others. In fact, pretty much any dog breed you can think of can also be bred with a Poodle to make a unique cross breed.
All of these introduce different benefits and characteristics and they all look amazingly cute when you give them the poodle’s signature coat.
In general, all Poodle cross breeds are going to make for a dog that is that bit more practical thanks to the anti-shedding coat, and that is going to be fun and intelligent too. These are a great choice and increasingly becoming more popular.
This is also true of Poodles themselves – which are great pets in their own right. By choosing a Poodle cross, though, you can reduce some of the potential health issues (knee problems) and the reputation that poodles have of being “flouncy.” And of course, you might have a particular breed that you’re fond of but just wish didn’t shed.
Whichever you pick, you can rest assured that any Poodle cross will be a great friend, loyal companion, and an excellent excuse to get out and meet people, while getting more exercise.