Chances are good that you’ve met a Labradoodle lately. These fuzzy poodle-Labrador hybrids are a common sight at your local dog park, looking for all the world like living teddy bears. So just what’s behind all the Labradoodle love?
Though it seems like those adorable, fuzzy “doodle” dogs have been around forever, they were actually only introduced in 1988. That’s when an Australian breeder decided to cross the Labrador retriever with the standard poodle to create a guide dog better for those generally allergic to dog fur and dander.
Energetic, loving, smart, and (sometimes) hypoallergenic—it wasn’t long before the world fell in love. Here are just some of the reasons that Labradoodle people love their pets.
Labradoodles are the cutest puppies
Can you resist that look; those adorable, expressive eyes? Didn’t think so! Labradoodle puppies are playful and bouncy, always ready for adventure—and a cuddle.
They come in all different sizes
Labradoodles come in three different sizes—standard, medium, or miniature. Standard pups can weigh more than 45 pounds, medium ones usually range between 25 and 45 pounds, and miniatures are less than 25 pounds. The size of puppies can be unpredictable, but whether little or big, they’re cuddly teddy bears all the same.
Also a variety of colors…
Labradoodles come in a variety of colors, from cream to chocolate, apricot, red, black, silver, or a mix of hues. Their fur can also vary, with some rocking wavy coats (the most popular style), and others sporting curly, wiry, or straight hair.
The Labradoodle is a treat to train!
Since both poodles and Labradors are known for their intelligence, it’s no surprise that Labradoodles are highly trainable. They’re eager to learn, and training helps keep their mischievous side at bay. After all, you don’t want your pet bounding up to every strange dog and person with unbridled enthusiasm. Probably.
They’ll keep you super-active
There’s no need for a Fitbit when you’ve got a Labradoodle by your side. Most of these dogs require plenty of walks, plus space to run around (big backyards and parks are perfect). They’re great dogs to jog with, though they still may want to stretch their legs off-leash when you’re done. And the more you exercise them, the less likely they are to become bored and destructive at home.
They don’t shed
While there’s no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog, Labradoodles do come close. Most of them sport poodle-inspired hair — a tightly-curled coat that doesn’t really shed but needs to be brushed and clipped. Because they shed less than most breeds, they’re easier on allergies, and on your furniture.
Labradoodles live to love you
Social and sweet, Labradoodles are lucky enough to possess many of the best qualities of Labradors and poodles. They adore being with people and are typically quite affectionate (even with strangers).
They make wonderful therapy dogs
That warm, loving, loyal Labradoodle personality makes them ideal therapy dogs for people with autism, physical disabilities, depression, and a number of other issues. Labradoodles also make excellent guide dogs for the blind—the very occupation they were originally bred for.
Labradoodles are born to swim
Cooling down on summer days is a whole lot sweeter when your four-legged best friend is involved. These dogs love to dive into the deep end and will keep you company in the water all season long.
They make great family dogs
Labradoodles quickly become an essential part of the family. They’re particularly wonderful with children—loving, and yet oozing with energy. Training and supervision is essential, though. They might accidentally knock your little one over if they get too excited.
Did we mention how much they love you?
Labradoodles are in it to win it with their human companions. Their people-pleasing instincts will keep you company well into their golden years.