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Goldendoodle running at Allyn Cox Reservation

Is A Doodle Dog Right For You?

Are you looking to bring a designer “Doodle” into your home? I’m here to share the pros and cons of owning a Doodle so you can make the decision if it’s the right fit for you and your family.

Disclaimer: I have never owned a “doodle” dog.

I have photographed an abundance of Doodles, from Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, and Bernedoodles. Are there others? I found 60 doodle mixes, including a Huskydoodle, Newfipoo and Pyredoodle.

I’m not going to start a debate. I’m a fan of rescue and ethical breeding. I”m also a huge fan of getting a breed or mix that fits your lifestyle. Doodles do come in all sizes from the littlest nuggets to a big Doberdoodle.


1. Friendly and Social

Are you looking for the perfect dog to join you at the local winery patio or pub? Doodle dogs are known for being friendly, social, and good with children and even other pets that you might have in your household. The love to be the center of attention.

Allyn Cox Reservation

2. Hypoallergenic

Do you have horrible allergies? They have a low shed rate and hypoallergenic coat. As I have a husky, I have no idea what’s it’s like to not have fur on EVERYTHING! This “pro” might make the top of your list!

3. Smart

Doodles pick up on things pretty quickly! They are very trainable. Do you love teaching tricks to a dog? Many of the doodles that I met enjoy giving a paw or high five!

Goldendoodle giving a paw to dad

4. Healthy

Being “hybrids”, doodle dogs are less prone to genetic health issues that purebreds might have.

5. Energetic

This may be a “con” if you are looking for a couch potato! But… If you are looking to get off your butt and develop a healthy fitness routine, a doodle could be a great companion! Yes, there require regular exercise, which is a great motivator to get in shape.

Goldendoodle running on Salisbury Beach in MA
Milo running on Salisbury Beach


1. High Maintenance Grooming

I get my haircut 2-3 times a year, so I spend about $200-$250 a year. I’m fortunate I don’t have too much gray!

A doodle? I recently had this discussion with a client and the cost was $180 every 6 week or so, making it around $1500 a year. I will stick to shed and monthly $10 nail trims at my local pet boutique!

Commercial Dog Photography in MA and NH

2. Separation Anxiety

I have met a few doodle owners that struggled with this during the pandemic… and once they had to leave more for work. Yes, this can happen to any dog if not left for increasing periods of time, but doodles do have more “destructive” tendencies. Also, doodles get very attached to their owners. Again, this is from my experience in dog training and chatting with my photography clients.

Here is great post about doodles and separation anxiety that I found while searching.

3. Price

Yup, you will spend! Doodles will be expensive if you purchase from a breeder, costing several thousands of dollars. If you do plan to purchase from a breeder, please do your research to find a reputable breeder.

What about adoption? Yes, I have seen doodles come through rescue. There is a poodle rescue in New England: Poodle Rescue New England. I have also seen doodle come through the MSPCA Nevins Farm , where I have taught dog training classes and photographed adoptable pooches over the years.

The two Goldendoodle below, Luna and Haley, are actually littermates! Luna is more golden retriever and Haley definitely got the poodle genes. I have enjoyed photographing these two over the years and their mom and dad do continuous training classes with them!

4. Health Concerns

Yes, I put this under “cons”, too! While hybrid strength may make doodles less prone to certain genetic health issues, they may still be prone to health concerns such as hip dysplasia or ear infections.

From my first hand experience talking with doodle owners, stomach issues seem to be very problematic.

Bernedoole Zorvino Vineyards
Bernedoodle, Theo, in the vineyard

Are you ready for a doodle?

What do you think? Is this the dog for YOU? No matter what you decide, remember all dogs require time and patience. Do the research. Find the best dog that meets your lifestyle so that you can develop an amazing connection that only strengthens more and more over the years.

Around the Circle

This post is part of a pet photographer’s blog group where we tackle a new topic each week. If you follow along, you will learn a lot more about doodles as that is the topic of the week. Next up is Canovas Photography, from Hamilton, ON sharing some highlights of a sweet Doodle photoshoot session. Enjoy!

7 thoughts on “Is A Doodle Dog Right For You?”

  1. That’s crazy that Luna and Haley are littermates. I’d never have guessed that. You bring up some very good points on the pros and cons of having a doodle in the family.

  2. Great pros & cons of doodles! Also, littermates Luna & Haley have different furnishing genes!

    Most likely they are the result of a doodle crossed with a retriever – furnishing gene is F, non furnished is N (or improper coat IC). Doodles carry F/N for furnishings (F/F from the poodle & N/N for the retriever), whereas a golden retriever is N/N. Which means a litter from a doodle and retriever will give you F/N & N/N puppies – furnished and unfurnished!

  3. OMG that’s a lot to spend on grooming!

    I love all of these doodle images! It’s so cool to see the different genes that come into play with littermates, and awesome that you were able to photograph both Luna and Haley.

  4. All of your points are well taken. I just had a client tell me she spends almost $2000 per year on grooming for her doodle. Our dog Billie had six pups while still at the shelter. Not one of them looked like the other one. It was crazy.

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