The odyssey of the doodle started twenty five+ years ago in Australia. It was the hybrid combination of the Labrador Retreiver and the Standard Poodle. It was spurred on by the fact that even though the Labrador was an immensely popular breed, it had one negative trait---intense shedding. It was also prone to several inherent problems in the breed, the most prevalent being hip dysplasia.
From the beginning the world was in love. Not only did the hybrid not shed, those with allergies did not react and with the now in place hybrid vigor, the dog was far healthier and robust. This hybrid had a mercurial rise to the top spanning the world over.
About 11 or 12 years ago the Goldendoodle made its face the poster child of the doodles, making the cover of Life magazine, with the article espousing the doodle perhaps being the ultimate breed ever!
Goldendoodles have now eclipsed the original Labradoodle in popularity. Many customers ask why, and what the differences are. To this, my answer is, not much. There is a prevailing assumption that the Labaradoodle will have a "longer" muzzle then the Goldendoodle. This, I believe , is because many people think of the narrow face of the American Field Lab and associate that with the offspring. This is a common misconception and the reason is easy to explain. But in order to do so, we have to take a closer look at the Standard Poodle. The Standard Poodle doesn't get a very fair shake for the most part. Perhaps this is due to many people automatically associating the poodle with the mini version or the toy. Though many poodles in these sizes are wonderful dogs, everyone knows someone who had a bad experience with these versions or had a direct relationship with one that didn't go well. That said, the Standard Poodle is a fantastic dog thru and thru. Their intelligence is well known, and many know of their athleticism as circus dogs for 200 + years. But unless you've experienced one firsthand you may not realize that these dogs are unbelievably affectionate, loyal and loving. My next sentence I will say with a bit of trepidation for fear of offending some, but it is necessary to illustrate a point. Those that do not have firsthand experience with these dogs will be very unaware of what I am to speak of next. The haircut that most associate poodles with---in my opinion--makes them look horrible.
But that doesn't have to be the case! In fact, with the proper haircut, to the casual observer they are easily mistaken for doodles. You see, the shape, length and overall dimensions of the muzzle are COMPLETELY dictated by how long the hair is kept around the muzzle/face/eyes/head/beard. What most are use to seeing is the "show cut" for poodles which necessitates the shaving of the muzzle, around the eyes and brow and a bit of a pompadour on the head. I believe this makes them look quite terrible! The difference between a poodle with a full face and a shaved face is monumental. Here is an example from our pack.
We've gone into this long winded explanation because I often get the statement "we want a doodle that looks more like the retriever then the poodle", or, "we like Goldendoodles over Labradoodles because they look more like the retriever side rather then the poodle". This is all hogwash. Either type of doodle can look "off" and not anything like "itself" when it has its proper "teddy-bear cut". Both versions will look like they have a much longer, skinnier snout if its shaved. Conversely, when grown in they both look full, round, and thicker--an actual illusion that is quite effective in both doodles and poodle.
Present and Past Puppies