Goldendoodle Pros and Cons (Before You Buy)
If you’ve been waffling between making a Golden Retriever or Poodle your next pet, a Goldendoodle might be a great way to meet in the middle.
Although the American Kennel Club doesn’t recognize the Goldendoodle as an official breed since it’s a hybrid, many Goldendoodle owners argue that their beloved canine is perfect just the way they are.
Nevertheless, no dog breed is ideal for every person and situation. So, I’ll help you understand some Goldendoodle pros and cons so that you can determine whether this breed is the right fit for you.
Pros of Owning a Goldendoodle
It’s undeniable—Goldendoodles are adorable, and their personalities will win over even the most diehard Golden Retriever or Poodle fan. Below are some of the stand-out qualities that Goldendoodles offer.
Excellent Family Pet
Goldendoodles are an ideal pet for families with children of essentially any age. Kennel Clubs rate both Golden Retrievers and Poodles as having the top rating under the categories “good with young children” and “affectionate with family.”
So, regardless of whether a Goldendoodle inherits more Poodle or Golden Retriever, you can feel confident that they’ll be naturally good with kids as long as the dog has a healthy, non-abusive upbringing.
Of course, as with any dog, you should monitor young children around a Goldendoodle.
Whereas Golden Retrievers have a minimal height difference, ranging from 21.5 to 24 inches, Poodles come in the following three sizes:
- Standard (over 15 inches)
- Miniature (10 to 15 inches)
- Toy (under 10 inches)
As a result, Goldendoodles vary significantly in their height and weight. That’s good news for people who live in smaller spaces or those on a farm wanting a larger dog.
If you’re purchasing a Goldendoodle puppy, speak with the breeder about your preferred size range. Although they can never guarantee what size a puppy will grow into, knowing the size of the Poodle parent will be a good indication of how large or small your Goldendoodle will become.
Great With Pets and Strangers
Golden Retrievers get an A+ rating from the AKC for being good with other dogs. In contrast, Poodles rate modestly good with other dogs—a far cry from the “not recommended” category.
Both Poodles and Golden Retrievers are also typically warm and receptive to strangers.
The trick is to ensure your Goldendoodle receives proper socialization with other dogs, house pets, and strangers at a young age. The most critical time for getting your Goldendoodle used to strangers and animals is within their first three months of life.
Poodles are a hypoallergenic dog breed, meaning that they shed little. For this reason, there’s a lower chance of them inducing symptoms in someone allergic to dog dander.
On the other hand, Golden Retrievers are massive shedders, leaving a trail of hair essentially everywhere they go.
The beautiful thing about Goldendoodles is that these dogs typically shed less than Golden Retrievers. Some are even hypoallergenic enough that they’re suitable for people with allergies.
The downside is that it’s impossible to know what genes a puppy will inherit. For example, some Goldendoodles shed relatively more if they inherit more of their Golden Retriever’s parent’s genes, while others barely shed if they have more Poodle genes.
Don’t Bark a Lot
Most Goldendoodles have a laid-back personality, causing them only to bark when the situation calls for it. They get this trait from the Golden Retriever.
However, Poodles have a higher tendency to bark, so your Goldendoodle may inherit more of a barking gene.
Nevertheless, the environment that you raise your Goldendoodle in will likely have the biggest impact on their barking. If you give them a safe, calm home and meet their dietary needs, it’s unlikely you’ll have a Goldendoodle that barks frequently.
Easy To Train
Poodles and Golden Retrievers are both brilliant dogs, making them a joy to train. They’re eager to please their owners, and small treats as rewards will send them into excitement overdrive.
As a result, it’s pretty easy to train Goldendoodles as long as you use consistency and positive training techniques.
That said, you should switch up your training methods often to prevent them from getting bored. Golden Retrievers and Poodles require lots of mental stimulation, so Goldendoodles often inherit this trait.
Good at Fetching
Having a backyard and a child that loves throwing balls is ideal for Goldendoodles. These dogs are naturals at fetching balls, so you won’t have to run around your yard gathering the ones you throw.
Since Goldendoodles need lots of time to exercise, playing fetch is a great way to encourage them to release their energy.
Cons of Owning a Goldendoodle
It’s hard to imagine there are many cons to owning a Goldendoodle after reading the details above. But depending on your circumstances, the information below might deter you from buying one upon weighing these Goldendoodle pros and cons.
Require an Active Lifestyle
Even though smaller Goldendoodles can live comfortably in an apartment, you need to be willing and able to take them outside regularly to get exercise.
Ideally, you should give your Goldendoodle at least two hours of exercise per day, broken up into at least two sessions.
Low-key walks can make up a portion of their exercise session, but you should also ensure your Goldendoodle receives daily vigorous exercise.
Need Regular Grooming
It’s impossible to know how a Goldendoodle’s coat will turn out before they’re born. Some inherit a Golden Retriever’s straighter hair, while others have a Poodle’s tighter curls.
So, every Goldendoodle has different grooming needs.
One consistent item among Goldendoodles is that they all need grooming in some form. I recommend working with your groomer to determine how often you should bring your pet in for a trim.
Goldendoodles can be painfully expensive for the everyday pet owner. These dogs range from $1,500 to $5,000.
The price depends on several factors, including the dog’s lineage, health, and age.
If you can’t afford a Goldendoodle from a breeder, I recommend checking with local animal shelters. Even if they don’t currently have a Goldendoodle (which is common, given the popularity of this breed), they might be able to place you on a waitlist.
Goldendoodles have a lifespan of 10 to 15 years, which encompasses both the Golden Retriever’s relatively shorter lifespan and the Poodle’s slightly longer one.
Some medical conditions that can reduce the Goldendoodle’s lifespan or quality of life include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Sebaceous adenitis
- Addison’s disease
The good news is that you can prevent or reduce the severity of these conditions by feeding your Goldendoodle a high-quality diet and taking them to annual vet checkups.
Prone to Separation Anxiety
Because Goldendoodles love people, they have a higher chance of experiencing separation anxiety than certain other breeds.
Canine separation anxiety can wreak havoc on your Goldendoodle’s emotions and your home . It can cause your dog to shake excessively, tear up furniture, claw at the door, and bark.
It’s important to build in time away from your Goldendoodle each day so that they grow accustomed to being alone, reducing their chances of developing anxiety.
Goldendoodles are curious animals and love the outdoors. So, while they might run into the woods and bring you a stick they found, there’s an equal chance they could roll around in a decaying carcass.
These dogs also have an adorable beard that’s super absorbent. So, if they’re playing in the mud or a pond, they’ll end up dripping it all over your floor if you don’t clean them first.
Destructive if They Don’t Get Exercise
A dog of any breed is only as well behaved as its owners allow. So in the case of Goldendoodles, if you don’t offer them enough exercise, they might release their energy by tearing up your house instead.
For this reason, it’s crucial that you understand the commitment involved with owning a Goldendoodle and ensure you have the means to offer them sufficient exercise.
The Bottom Line
Too many dogs end up in an animal shelter from well-meaning owners not doing their proper research before bringing home a pet. So, I applaud you for researching Goldendoodle pros and cons, and I hope you have a better idea of whether this breed is the right fit for you.
If you decide to buy a Goldendoodle, I’m confident your home will fill with more love as you bond with your new best friend.