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17 Goldendoodle Pros & Cons: What to Know Before You Get One

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By Nicole Cosgrove

goldendoodle dog standing on grass

The Goldendoodle is a hybrid breed that combines the Poodle and the Golden Retriever—two very popular dog breeds that are known for their intelligence and their obedience, respectively. The cross was originally bred to create a working dog with the prowess of the Golden Retriever combined with the hypoallergenic properties of the Poodle’s low-shedding coat. But it has become a very popular pet breed over the past couple of decades.

Celebrity owners include the likes of Jennifer Aniston, and because of the popularity of the dog, potential owners can easily find breeders. While the Goldendoodle is a hybrid breed, you can still expect to pay a premium to own one of these dogs.

Below, we look at the pros and cons of the Goldendoodle so that you can determine whether this is the right breed for you and your home.

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The 9 Pros of Owning a Goldendoodle

1. They Tend to Be Low-Shedding

The reason the Goldendoodle was bred in the first place was to create a service dog that was low shedding, which would make service dogs more accessible to those with allergies. While the dog does still produce the proteins that cause allergic reactions in sufferers, they are low shedding which also means they produce less dander and are less likely to cause severe allergic reactions. A lower-shedding dog also means less vacuuming and cleaning up at home, although it does necessitate regular grooming.

Image Credit: maceyhurley, Shutterstock

2. Goldendoodles Come in Different Sizes

Having been bred from the Golden Retriever and the Poodle, the Goldendoodle comes in the same array of sizes as the Poodle breed.

  • Miniatures typically measure about 16 inches tall and weigh 25 pounds.
  • The medium Goldendoodle will weigh up to 40 pounds and be around 18 inches tall.
  • The standard Goldendoodle is a similar size to a standard Poodle and will measure around 22 inches tall, weighing 60 pounds.
  • There is also a new, smaller teacup size emerging within the hybrid breed, and this tiny variant stands around 10 or 11 inches tall and weighs just 12 pounds.

3. They Have Three Coat Types

As well as being available in several sizes, the Goldendoodle also comes with a variety of coat types.

  • The curly coat is the most desirable. It is similar to that of a Poodle, but the curls aren’t quite as tight. This coat is desirable because it is the most beneficial for allergy sufferers and rarely malts.
  • Goldendoodles with a wavy coat have a shaggy appearance. Brushing takes less effort than with a curly coat, but the wavy coat will shed more. It still sheds less than a straight coat, however, so offers some benefits of the straight coat and some of the curly coat.
  • Straight-coat Goldendoodles have a coat that is more like the Golden Retriever than that of the Poodle. This type can shed profusely but it does not require the daily brushing of the curly coat. If you’re choosing the breed for its fun, loving nature, rather than its hypoallergenic properties, the straight-coat Goldendoodle might be a good choice.
a mini goldendoodle puppy in a basket
Image Credit: SoySendra, Shutterstock

4. Goldendoodles Make Loving Companions

Although initially bred as service dogs, Goldendoodles make excellent companion pets. They are loving and loyal, as well as playful and lively. They typically get along with all family members and will befriend visitors, as well as strangers.

5. They Are Intelligent and Usually Obedient

The breed combines the Poodle and the Golden Retriever. The Poodle is known for being a hyper-intelligent breed that, when it sets its mind to it, can learn anything. In tests, only the Border Collie outranks the Poodle for its skill in obedience and working intelligence. Goldendoodles were not ranked in these tests because mixed breeds did not feature.

However, the Golden Retriever is the most popular service dog breed in the world because it is not only intelligent and quick to pick up new commands but also very eager to please its handler. Therefore, the Goldendoodle is intelligent, quick to learn, and eager to please.

Chocolate Goldendoodle
Image Credit: The Dog Photographer, Shutterstock

6. They’re Not Prone to Excessive Barking

Dogs bark for a host of different reasons, whether because they are bored or to alert their owners to potential threats. And, while every individual dog is different, the Goldendoodle breed is not considered a vocal dog. It will rarely bark, except perhaps when excited or on command, which means that this breed is a good choice for families with very young children and those that live close to neighbors.

7. They Like Water

The Poodle is a breed of water dog, and the Golden Retriever was bred to flush and retrieve birds from streams, rivers, and other water sources. Because both parent breeds are confident in the water and enjoy spending time in the water, you can also expect the Goldendoodle to have a similar connection to the water.

black goldendoodle dog standing on the river bank
Image Credit: Brandon Blake, Shutterstock

8. Goldendoodles Are Good with Children

The breed is known for its love of children. It is understanding and accepting of kids. It forgives accidental grabbing and doesn’t typically respond with nipping or biting. Very young children should never be left unattended with dogs, regardless of breed, but the Goldendoodle is a popular choice for families with kids.

9. Goldendoodles Are Good with Other Pets

The breed is also known to be accepting of other dogs and other household pets, including cats. If you live in a multi-pet household, the Doodle can be a good choice. You should always make slow introductions without rushing things and if you do have cats, ensure that they have some kind of escape route so they can get out of the way if they need to.

mini goldendoodle lying on the floor
Image Credit: Feride Ucar, Shutterstock

The 8 Cons of Owning a Goldendoodle

10. They Are Not Formally Recognized by Kennel Clubs

The Goldendoodle is a well-known hybrid breed that has become very popular. It is highly sought after as a pet and used as a therapy dog and service dog. However, despite its popularity, it is still a crossbreed, which means that kennel clubs do not officially recognize the breed. This may change in the future, but it will take a lot of generations of careful breeding and the formation of breed standards.

11. Goldendoodles Can Be Stubborn

Although generally described as highly intelligent and obedient, this hybrid breed is sometimes said to be a stubborn breed. Some owners have also cited naughtiness as a breed trait. Stubbornness can be common in working dogs, especially when they aren’t given enough exercise or adequate training. Ensure your Goldendoodle gets at least an hour of exercise a day and try to give the dog tasks that will stimulate it mentally as well as physically.

Chocolate Goldendoodle
Image Credit: The Dog Photographer, Shutterstock

12. They Like Water

As well as being a pro, the breed’s love of water can be a con. If you let your Doodle off the leash and there’s any kind of river, stream, sea, or even large puddle, it can prove difficult to keep them dry and clean. Pack towels for your outdoor adventures and consider putting a blanket or sheet on the car seat to help protect it and prevent mud.

13. They Still Cause Allergic Reactions

Poodles and most Goldendoodles are said to be hypoallergenic. This doesn’t mean that they cause no allergic reactions whatsoever, but it does mean they are less allergenic than other dogs. They are less likely to cause reactions, and when they do, those reactions will typically be less severe than those caused by other dog breeds.

Goldendoodles are hypoallergenic because they tend to have the low-shedding properties of the Poodle parent. Even these Goldendoodles will cause some allergic reactions, and not all Doodles have the hypoallergenic curly coat. Straight-coat Goldendoodles can shed profusely and may cause the kind of allergic reaction that Golden Retrievers are known to elicit.

goldendoodle dog lying on the ground
Image Credit: Brian Andrew Simms, Shutterstock

14. Goldendoodles Can Suffer Separation Anxiety

The breed is loving and loyal and it will become attached to its human owners. This is great when the family is around, but it can also lead to separation anxiety when the dog is left alone, especially if it is left alone for long periods. As such, the breed might not be the best option for families that go out to work or school all day. Regular exercise, interactive dog toys, and, potentially, crate training, can help alleviate these problems.

15. They’re Expensive

Generally, purebred dogs carry the highest price tags, especially if they have an exceptional lineage. You can expect to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 for a purebred Golden Retriever or Poodle, for example. Crossbreeds and hybrids tend to cost less, and while the Goldendoodle does cost less than purebred examples of the parent breeds, they can still carry a price tag of $1,000 to $2,500, which makes them very expensive for a cross.

goldendoodle dog sitting outdoor
Image Credit: Matthew Yoder, Shutterstock

16. Goldendoodles Need Plenty of Grooming

Depending on the coat type of the dog, Goldendoodles may need anywhere from virtually no grooming to daily brushing and regular trims. The straight-hair Doodle is not considered hypoallergenic, but it doesn’t require the daily brushing that the curly-coated Goldendoodle needs. The wavy coat Goldendoodle offers a compromise: it does need brushing once or twice a week but doesn’t shed as heavily as the straight coat. Its coat is also easier to brush than the curls of the curly-coated Doodle.

17. Goldendoodles Need Plenty of Exercise

The Goldendoodle’s parents are working dog breeds, and while they may be commonly kept as pets, they do still retain many of the working dog habits and physical attributes. They need plenty of daily exercise. The Goldendoodle is a combination of these two breeds, which means that it will require good exercise every day. Expect to give at least an hour of exercise a day, which can include leashed walks as well as agility and other more intensive forms of exercise. The Goldendoodle does do very well in agility and enrolling in this kind of class can help provide physical and mental stimulation.

Goldendoodle playing with a ball at a park
Image Credit: Samuel Haché, Pexels

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The Goldendoodle has become a very popular pet breed and also makes a good service dog or therapy dog. It is expensive for a hybrid breed and is not recognized by kennel clubs, but it is bright, friendly, and integrates well into most family units. The choice of size and coat type also means that there is a Doodle out there to fit most preferences and requirements.

Featured Image Credit: Rena Schild, Shutterstock

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