Breed GroupMixed Breed
Life Span12 to 15 years
Height1ft to 2ft
Weight30lb to 90lb (Standard or Mini)
Best ForActive families with older children.

Labradoodle Breed Guide

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Labradoodle Overview

Dog Breed:
Breed Group:
Mixed Breed
A crossbreed with a mix of Labrador Retriever and Poodle. The poodle portion may be Standard or Miniature and that can affect the size of the Labradoodle. A high-energy, sociable, intelligent, and affectionate dog that enjoys an active lifestyle full of fun, play, and swimming!
2ft to 2ft2 (Standard Labradoodle) 1ft to 2ft (Miniature Labradoodle)
55lb to 90lb (Standard Labradoodle) 12lb to 80lb (Miniature Labradoodle)
Life Span:
12 to 15 years
Coat Colors:
Most common: Black, cream, and gold. Other varieties: White, chocolate, blue/brown, parchment parti, phantom, abstract, and red.
Area of Origin:
Best For:
Active families with older children.

Labradoodle Characteristics

Good for First-Time Owners
Good with Children
Easy to Train
Exercise Requirements
Ease of Grooming
Amount of Shedding
Amount of Drooling
Tendency to Bark

About The Labradoodle

  • Labradoodles were initially bred to be hypoallergenic due to low amounts of hair shedding.

  • They are a mixed breed that can vary substantially in size and height.

  • They were initially bred in Australia.

Labradoodles were bred to be better tolerated as pets by those with allergies like asthma and other skin or airway sensitivities. The combination of the Poodle with the Labrador Retriever reduces the excessive hair shedding you would normally expect with a Labrador. For this reason, they are sometimes a good choice for service dogs like hearing or guide dogs, if the owner has allergies.

A breeder in Australia named Wally Conron originally noticed the unfulfilled need for a hypoallergenic service dog, which was the beginning of the breed becoming recognized. However, even before this, it is known that people had referred to their crossbreed Labrador-Poodle as a Labradoodle.

Because they can be bred using a standard or a miniature sized Poodle, the size of the resulting Labradoodle can vary substantially. This means that potential new owners of Labradoodles can have some say on the size of dog that would be a good fit, not just into their lifestyle but into their home as well. But be aware that the eventual adult size of any dog is not an exact science – just because you’ve selected a Miniature Labradoodle, bred from a Miniature Poodle, does not mean with absolute certainty that they won’t reach a fairly decent height!

Labradoodle Breed History

  • First bred as ‘Labradoodles’ in 1989, by Australian breeder Wally Conron.

  • The Labradoodle is a crossbreed as their appearance is too variable to achieve a breed standard.

  • There is now a separate breed, the Australian Labradoodle, which includes other breeds in early generations, not just Labrador Retriever and Poodle.

Although the first intentional breeding of a Labradoodle was in 1989 in Australia, in order to begin to provide and train service dogs for the Royal Guide Dog Association of Australia, the public had used the term Labradoodle to describe crossbreeds from unintentional matings prior to this. Despite their clear excellence as guide dogs, hearing dogs, and therapy dogs, they are not just used as service dogs, they are also a very popular family pet.

Due to the variation appearance and temperament of the Labradoodle, they are still known as a hybrid or crossbreed. Until the breed standard is recognized and consistently achieved, they cannot be certified as a pure breed. There are now large enough numbers of Labradoodles, that they can be bred with other Labradoodles, rather than continuing to cross Labrador Retrievers and Poodles. Over time this should give more consistency and allow the Kennel Club to formally recognize the breed.

Breeders in Australia have now created the Australian Labradoodle. By including spaniel breeds in early generations, and strictly controlling subsequent breeding to protect the line, they have achieved the consistency of a breed standard, and are a recognized pure breed.

Despite being a much-loved family pet and a reliable service dog, the Labradoodle breed is not without problems. The popularity of the breed has led to some indiscriminate breeding, causing negative behavioral and medical traits to be bred into the breeding line rather than removed.

Controlled and careful breeding is very important and this has caused many breeders, including the original breeder Wally Conron, to speak out on their regret regarding the issues plaguing the Labradoodle breed. Such issues include hip and elbow dysplasia, which are conditions that the Labrador Retriever breed is predisposed to. There are screening processes available where hips and elbows of breeding pairs can be x-rayed before breeding to check that they have good joints and are not going to pass on the condition.

Labradoodle Size & Weight

  • The size of a Labradoodle varies from reasonably small to quite large depending on the parents.

  • They can grow to approximately 1ft to 2ft2” shoulder height, with males often reaching taller heights than females.

  • They can weigh between 55 and 80lbs.

The main variation in size, height, and weight with Labradoodles, comes from the use of either Miniature or Standard Poodles in the breeding. Now that the Labradoodle is multigenerational (Labradoodles are being bred with other Labradoodles), two more distinct sizes are forming – the Miniature Labradoodle and the Standard Labradoodle. However, there is still enough inconsistency that accurately predicting the adult size of a Labradoodle pup is near impossible.

Labradoodle Personality & Temperament

  • Affectionate, intelligent, and sociable.

  • Fun, energetic, and playful.

  • Ideal for families if dedicated to training.

Labradoodles are clever, friendly, and affectionate, which makes them eager to please their owners. This keenness is very useful for training, which is important with any breed of this size and energy level.

Because of their high energy levels, distractions may be a training issue, especially whilst they are young, so patience and perseverance may be required. If untrained, the breed can develop bad manners, including jumping up and generally being boisterous and difficult to handle, which can be risky considering their larger size.

Their energetic nature means that they require a reasonable level of exercise and stimulation. They are very good swimmers and this can be a good way for them to burn some energy. They seem to have endless energy for play, but be aware that they can become quite rough, so once again training is important.

Their friendly and sociable nature means that they are will not be fearful of other people, dogs, or children, and will often want to approach strangers or dogs to say hello. Good recall and good manners will be important as they may be so keen to greet other dogs that they don’t pick up on cues that the other dog may not want company!

Labradoodle Health & Grooming

  • Labradoodles are prone to hip and elbow dysplasia.

  • They are predisposed to ear infections, especially if they swim.

  • They are not necessarily hypoallergenic and do require grooming.

Labrador Retrievers are a breed who are predisposed to hip and elbow dysplasia, where the joints develop with a poor conformation, leading to instability, pain, muscle wastage, and arthritis. These conditions have been passed on to Labradoodles through breeding.

There is a Kennel Club scheme that monitors the breeding of Labrador Retrievers, Labradoodles, and other affected breeds, where the parents can be x-rayed to check their hips and elbows before breeding. This ensures that only those with the best hip and elbow conformations are used for breeding and over time this should help to reduce the number of dogs affected by both conditions. When buying a pup, ask for the hip and elbow scores of both parents to reduce the risk of your dog being affected.

Labradoodles have a lovely curly coat, and this includes their ears. These dangly, pendulous ears, combined with the hair, prevent normal ventilation of the ear canals which can lead to ear infections.

The fact that they often swim means that they are doubly prone because water gets into their ears and may not easily drain out. The breed is also prone to skin allergies, which means itchy ears, skin rashes, and hot spots can be a regular occurrence without the correct management.

Although they were bred to be hypoallergenic, due to the lack of hair shedding in the Poodle, Labradoodles can still cause allergies in some individuals. Their shedding is low compared to other breeds, but they can shed small amounts of hair still, and therefore cause allergies to sensitive people. Because of this shedding, their water-based lifestyle, and their curly hair coat, they require daily brushing and regular trips to the groomer.

Labradoodle Training

  • Clever and eager to please, which makes them easier to train.

  • Regularly used as service dogs or therapy dogs to make use of their intelligence and trainability.

  • Their high energy and excitement level may make training more difficult, especially when younger.

Because of their size, playful demeanor, and energy levels, it is very important to train a Labradoodle. Without training, they can jump up and be boisterous and unintentionally rough when playing or overexcited, which can lead to a risk of injury, especially around children.

Labradoodles are so intelligent and loyal that they want to please their owners, especially once they are bonded with you, which makes them easier to train. Once trained, they can tend to be well mannered and reliable, but the process of training, especially when young, can take patience.

Initial training is better done in a quiet and calm environment, with few distractions, since they are a very excitable breed, and you may struggle to get their attention.

Labradoodle Exercise Requirements

  • Clever and eager to please, which makes them easier to train.

  • Regularly used as service dogs or therapy dogs to make use of their intelligence and trainability.

  • Their high energy and excitement level may make training more difficult, especially when younger.

Labradoodles have very high exercise requirements. Without the necessary exercise and stimulation, they can be boisterous or act destructively in the home by chewing. A minimum of an hour and a half of walking a day, with a long run or walk at the weekend would be a suitable routine for a Labradoodle. They also enjoy swimming so a trip to the beach or local river will help to keep them cool in the summer as well as burning energy and keeping them fit.

Their playful nature makes it relatively easy for owners to help them use energy. Toys and games, as well as interactive play, can be enjoyed for hours with a Labradoodle, and if they are well trained, the whole family can get involved.

Labradoodle Diet & Feeding

  • Should have a high-quality diet with good protein and carbohydrate sources.

  • Large breed or working dog diets may be a good choice.

  • Diet should be reviewed at each life stage.

Labradoodles have a lot of energy and so need a diet full of good quality protein and carbohydrate sources. Breed-specific complete diets or a working dog diet may help to provide the calories and nutrition required for this breed.

Just like with any breed, Labradoodles require different nutrition dependent on their life stage, neuter status, and lifestyle. For example, puppies should be fed a complete puppy diet, whereas dogs over 7 or 8 years old should have a senior diet.

Even though they are very busy dogs, Labradoodles can still gain weight if fed too much at meal-times or if they have too many treats. Owners will need to keep an eye on their food and treat intake and make adjustments depending on their weight and exercise regime.

Labradoodle Rescue Groups

Labradoodles are very popular at the moment in the UK, and there are many rescue groups across the country. The details of Labradoodles that need a new home can be found on the following UK based Labradoodle rescue pages:

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