Breed

Labradoodle

Size

Large

Life span

15 Years

Weight

71 Kg

Breed Group

Hybrid Dogs

Overview

The Labradoodle is a medium-sized mixed breed or designer breed developed in Australia during the 1950s. Designer breeds are a mix of two purebreds crossed together to create a new breed with varying purposes. In the case of the Labradoodle a Labrador Retriever and a Standard, Miniature, or Toy Poodle was used to create the breed. The reason behind the development of the Labradoodle is to create a hypoallergenic guide dog. Because the Labradoodle is a crossbreed, puppies do not possess a uniform or consistent physical and/or mental characteristics. While most will have some common traits, there will be litters with different appearances and/or behavioural characteristics which are unpredictable. Puppies with straight coats, wavy coats or curly coats can be born in the same litter and may also vary in sizes (standard, medium, or miniature) depending on the size of the Poodle used for the first generation breeding. Although the Labradoodle is considered hypoallergenic, the breed does shed but usually less and has less dog odour than the Labrador Retriever. The typical size of Labradoodles is between

History & Origin

The term “Labradoodle” first appeared on the scene in 1955 but did not gain recognition until 1988 when Australian breeder Wally Conron began popularising the Labrador Retriever and the Standard Poodle cross as a hypoallergenic breed that can also be used as a guide dog. The purpose was to combine the low-shedding property of the Poodle’s coat with that of the mild temperament, gentleness, and trainability of the Labrador Retriever. The resulting breed should be able to guide blind people that suffer from allergies to fur and dog dander. The first Labradoodle to successfully perform this job was named “Sultan” who worked as a guide dog for a blind woman in Hawaii for 10 years. Today, Labradoodles are still bred in Australia and other places around the world by guide and assistance dog organizations to provide guidance, assistance, and act as therapy dogs and at the same time, being popular family companions as well.

Temperament

Being a crossbreed, puppies from the same litter may display varying characteristics and temperament. However, most Labradoodles will display some common traits that they inherit from their parents: generally friendly, energetic, intelligent, good with children and excellent family dogs. There are some litters that often display an affinity for water and strong swimming abilities, traits which they also inherit from the Labrador Retriever and the Poodle. The Labradoodle is a highly intelligent breed because the parent breeds are amongst the world’s intelligent and easy to train dog breeds. It is a friendly breed, never aggressive and very devoted to the family. It is also gentle, joyful, and happy which will often manifest through exuberant jumping and playing.

Training

Training is fairly easy for this breed. Intelligence comes naturally because both the parent breeds, the Labrador Retriever and the Poodle are one of the world’s most intelligent breeds. Training and socialisation should start at an early age, preferably between the ages of 4-8 months where the puppy can be easily trained, making it an ideal candidate for service either as a therapy or assistance dog.

Grooming

The Labradoodle’s coat can vary anywhere between wiry and soft and can either be straight, wavy, or curly. A straight-coated Labradoodle has a “hair” coat, a wavy-coated Labradoodle has a “fleece” coat, while a curly-coated Labradoodle has a “wool” coat. In any coat type, grooming should be done on a regular basis to maintain the coat healthy and the skin free from irritations and/or allergies.

Health

Health issues are almost the same with the parent breeds. The Labrador Retriever and the Poodle can suffer from certain health issues so does the Labradoodle. Some dogs may suffer from these disorders but it doesn’t mean that it can have all of them.                                 

  • Hip dysplasia (canine) - is a hereditary or developmental deformation or misalignment of the hip socket where, in its more severe case can cause crippling lameness and painful arthritis of the joints;
  • Cataracts – the clouding of the lens in the eye that leads to decrease in vision;
  • Elbow dysplasia – this medical condition involves the growth of cartilage in the dog’s elbow joint or the structures surrounding it;
  • Hypothyroidism – also called underactive thyroid, is a condition where the dog’s thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone which can cause poor ability to tolerate cold or tiredness;
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) – this eye problem is characterised by the bilateral degeneration of the retina, causing gradual vision loss that results in blindness;
  • Multifocal retinal dysplasia (MRA) – usually a non-progressive disease caused by viral infections, drugs, or genetic issues. It is characterised by folds or rosettes of the retinal tissue;
  • Addison’s disease – also known as hypocortisolism, this disease is an endocrine disorder which involves the production of not enough steroid hormones.

Exercise

Exercise requirement should be between 30 and 60 minutes of short walks on a daily basis. The Labradoodle can be a high-energy dog and would do best in a large house with a medium- to large-sized yard that is well-fenced. Although the Labradoodle is highly adaptable, it is not recommended for an apartment life. This smart and energetic breed also requires mental exercises to prevent boredom. First-generation Labradoodles have more exercise requirements than multi-generation Labradoodles, so it is in the best interest of the owner to know if the puppy is born as a first-generation or from a multi-generation Labradoodles.

Children and other pets

This breed is very friendly and will accept anyone as a friend. It is exceptionally good with children because of its gentle and playful temperament. It is not an aggressive dog because it was not bred to be, hence, it is generally good with other dogs as well.

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