Designer dogs, the imfamous doodle.

Standing in the park; watching Elsa charge after her ball again and again, a man shouts over to me.  Is that a "doodle?"  I am very use to the question and call back "nope, a poodle, just a poodle."  He stood for a long while watching.  He said he had two doodles at home and continued to watch.  I know he was thinking "this is a poodle?"  Most people have an skewed image of a poodle.  That of a fluffed up, pampered pooch eating bon bons on the couch all day; the type of dog that doesn't get dirty.  This of course is completely wrong, but it is what people think due to the "dog show" poodles that they have seen. 

Doodles are very popular and it seems that they are getting even more so.  There are everything from maltipoos, schnoodles, labradoodles, goldendoodles, aussiedoodles, bernoodle, boodles and the list goes on and on.  So when someone asks if my dogs are doodles, it is because there are so many doodles out there.  With the absence of Luke and Elsa's typical poodle pom poms; people don't recognize them as a poodle.  Does it bother me that people think that my dogs are doodles?  Not in the least, I don't care what people think they are.  To me they are amazing, curly coated retrievers who happen to love doing anything as long as it's with a family member.  I'm sort of smitten with the breed I'd have to say.  

So what is my take on the whole "doodle" thing?  It is not a yes or no type answer, there is much to consider.   First off there are probably less than a handful of good doodle breeders.  Good, meaning that they do all the health tests on their breeding dogs, socialize the puppies, have only a litter or two a year and temperament test.  The rest?  Greed, sheer greed.  With the misconception that the doodle dog is somehow enhanced with a sort of super amazingness, it became the dog to have.  People were scrambling to get one of these amazing dogs.  They believed all the hype and as people
do, they desired one. 

Sadly much of the labradoodle and goldendoodle hype; comes from a misconception of the poodle which was also created by humans.  Many people, especially men do not want to be seen walking own the street with a poodle; it's an image thing.  But throw a Labrador or Golden Retriever in there and they never have to admit that they have a poodle.  Whatever floats your boat.  But sadly it is the dogs that are suffering.  My issue with doodles is not the mixing of breeds, I LOVE DOGS, ALL DOGS.   What I do not love are the horrible beings who breed for profit.  The people who pump out puppies so that they can have their piece of the pie without any regard for the health or well being of the dogs. 

I was on a doodle site just last night.  The site was filled with poodle mixes of all kinds.  The list and number of puppies available was mind numbing.  This is the problem.  A miller, most doodles come from millers; big and small but they are millers.  With the big thing being doodles, of course they all jumped in; they all want a piece of the action.  It is all marketing and hype and yes we humans tend to buy into that stuff.  Stupid?  Yep.  If it's new we want it.  If they say that it's great, we want that too. 

Let me just say that doodles are not super dogs; they are not healthier than a purebred dog.  It is all false advertising.  Just because you take two different breeds and breed them together does not give you a healthy dog.  Far from it.  You could be breeding two non healthy dogs of different breeds together and sadly with the doodles; this is typically what is happening.  Unfortunately many of these supposedly healthy doodles are plagued with serious health issues.   The general public does not understand the depth of what goes into producing healthy dogs.  They've been told that the simple act of mixing a Lab and a Poodle will produce stellar health.    Wrong. 

I have worked with several people who desperately wanted a doodle because of the hypoallergenic aspect of their hair.  Two families had their hearts broken after discovering that their children were indeed allergic to them.  When you breed a Labrador to a Poodle you lose the non allergic factor of the poodle coat.  Sad.  What is even more sad is that the shelters and rescues are filling up with these very same doodle dogs.  People get them thinking they are wonder dogs; only to find out that they are dogs, just dogs who poop, pee and puke on the carpet.  They chew things and jump on you just like normal dogs. 

There are many different opinions on the whole "doodle" thing.  My opinion lies with the dogs.  Bad people breeding bad dogs; it is very sad.  These bad people dupe prospective puppy buyers into thinking that they are getting a miracle dog.  When all they are getting is a dog from a puppy miller.  Someone who cares far more about lining their pocket than a puppy or puppy buyer. 

It all started 22 years ago and if Wally Conron had known then what he knows now; the doodle would never have existed. 

Creator regrets ever creating the doodle

Do I shun a doodle when I see it?  Do I think that it is an abomination of nature?  No of course not.  I probably bend down and tell it how adorable it is.  It is after all a dog who is the product of the greedy, heartless person that bred it.  It is the not the fault of the dog at all.  Would I shake the hand of the miller who pumped out the puppy and lied to get a few bucks from a nice family?  HELL NO.  I am appalled by anyone who pumps dogs out whether they are mixes or purebreds.  Those who breed dogs several times a year; using them simply as a puppy machine.  People who keep their dogs in kennels and have a breed facility whether it is clean or filthy.  Millers, they are all millers and deserve to be thrown in prison like the dogs that they keep.

The "doodle" dilemma runs far deeper than mixing two breeds.  It is all about life; disrespecting it, cheating, robbing and the cruel treatment of.  The doodle millers would not succeed if it were not for the humans always seeking the new and improved.   


  1. I feel just the same was you do about the the whole "Designer Dog" issue. We also have people ask if our standard poodle is a "Doodle" because of his utility clip. They never asked when he was in a Continental :) Coming from a groomer point of view, a lot of people are unprepared for the grooming nightmare Doodles can be. They seem to think they can just let their hair grow want to do that so they wont look like a poodle lol! That being said, we have one boy here locally we run into on our walks that is a wonderful dog with a great committed owner. You can tell by his attitude and behavior he is happy and well cared for. He and Hoolie love running into each other on the trail.

  2. sometimes i think its a good thing that people have this crazy image of poodles being too "feminine". We all know what happens when a breed gets popular....remember the dalmations when the Disney movie was so popular. It compromises the breed drastically. Then you risk having puppy mills. I also feel that the cross breeding has just gone nuts. So many dogs in shelters needing homes, stop coming up with different crosses & adopt a dog instead. (just my opinion & i'm sticking to it ! )

  3. Everyone keeps bringing up that this man somehow "invented" doodle dogs. I really, knowingly, disagree.

    The first dog I ever had was a schnoodle. Mamie. I was 4 (in 1961) when we got her, and she was the dog I grew up with. She was called a schnoodle by the person we got her from, and we always referred to her as that. She was a standard poodle/standard schanuzer cross. My Mom got a cockapoo a few years after that, Annie, and she was just as wonderful. We knew so many people back then with poodle mixes.

    When I was about 12, my step-brother got a goldendoodle. He was 16 at the time. When he left home and hitchhiked out west, he took his dog with him. He was a wonderful dog, but he did shed. That was about 1970. His dog was hit by a drunk driver and he found a labradoodle a few months later to replace him.

    I guess the point is, that people have been breeding poodles with other dogs for years. I'm not sure why in the last 10 years or so it's become popular, but it isn't something new. I do think that whatever breed is bred to a poodle, a lot of the poodle's wonderful intelligence and disposition comes through.

    I own a standard poodle now--Lilly--she is the love of my life. She's so smart, so intuitive, sometimes almost human. She goes most everywhere with me. I was out to buy a labradoodle, and I had found a person who only bred a couple of littles each year. Anyway, she had both litters within a week of each other, the standards and the doodles. I loved the patience and focus the poodles showed, so decided to get one instead. I don't think I'll ever buy another breed of dog!!

  4. Well said.......could not agree more. I get the same question about my standards all the time. And yes, the doodles are adorable - but I see many who are not getting the care (coat, ears, etc.) that these dogs need. I've seen that with poodles as well, but not so much as people who buy standards generally know what comes with owning one. Thankfully, standard poodles are not a fad, and I pray they don't become one.
    I asked a vet years ago, when they first appeared on the scene, what she thought of them. She said that, while they could be good dogs, she saw many with serious genetic problems. And, Sherri, you're correct, there are rescue sites full of them. So sad.

  5. Eileen, I have to agree with you completely. I do not want everyone wanting a poodle. I'm a little worried about them right now as I am seeing them in commercials and spot appearances on shows a little too much. Not good to be the "in" dog.

  6. Lori, yes they were around before but it this one person who had the biggest impact in what is going on now. He marketed them as the most amazing dogs and obviously the world was at the perfect time to buy in.,

  7. Hi Y'all,

    My Human's first retriever was a Standard Poodle. Not only did she use him for hunting but he learned to be almost human. However he had many health issues. Until me she had a series of rescued retrievers, no Doodles.

    As a Chessie, with my wavy coat, I am often mistaken for a doodle. However, I am a pure bred Chessie, as was my sister before me, though she was a rescue.

    Y'all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  8. Great post! I feel much better. I swore I wouldn't care what people thought my Spoo was, but...I admit that I've been just a little snippy when people ask if she's a doodle (after the first dozen times I heard the question). She has a poodle shaved face, but no froufrou cut and no poodle feet. I do understand. There just aren't a lot of standards in rural NC, especially not apricot. There ARE a zillion variations of oodles around. So I guess it is a logical assumption.

    OK...I must confess that I do enjoy the question, "poodle and what?" I just smile and say, "poodle".


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