Why Do Dog People Hate Doodles?

July 27, 2021
July 27, 2021

Why do people hate doodles? Have you experienced it? I’ve seen it a lot.

These curly whirly, adorable little monsters are often the source of a solid dose of prejudice because of the ‘doodle’ suffix. Is it deserved? Yes and no, but we’ll get into that shortly. 

According to yappy.com’s recent surveys, Doodles, oodles and poos are some of the most spoiled breeds across both the UK and the US.

Doodles In The UK

  • Scotland’s most spoiled dog breed are cockapoos, 
  • The Southwest of England’s are cavapoos… 

Doodles In the US 

  • The South east’s most spoiled is the labradoodle, 
  • Minnesota & New York’s most spoiled is the Schnoodle… 

So why are they so resented in the dog community?

There’s a lot of prejudice against these cross breeds, and I want to go into why that exists. Because there is a really logical reason for it! But it’s sometimes hard to see.

a bernedoodle is one of the many doodle cross (bernese mountain dog and poodle in case you're wondering!)
a bernedoodle is one of the many doodle cross (bernese mountain dog and poodle in case you’re wondering!)

Let me also preface this by saying that I love doodles. I love smart dogs in general, working with a smart dog is super rewarding, and doodles are up there! They’re not easy, but good things never are, are they? 

What Is A Doodle?

It’s the term used to describe a dog who is half poodle and half something else. They’re most often doodles, but occasionally you’ll hear of a poo, for example a goldendoodle or labradoodle, or a cavapoo or a cockerpoo. These denote their original breed (respectively: Golden retriever, labrador, cavalier or cocker spaniel). They usually come in a variety of sizes depending on the poodle that has been the ‘source’ dog and their size (as poodles come in Toy, Miniature, Medium and Standard varieties). They’re typically smart, typically energetic, and that energy needs to be harnessed.

So with all of that cute scruffiness, what objections do “dog” people have? 

By dog people, I kind of mean the hardcore community, most ordinary dog people could care less, but the holier-than-thous can kind of look down on the breed… and here’s what they say and whether it’s a legitimate thing, or something with “legs”.

Let’s start here with the accusation of…

“They’re Not A Breed”

Uhm… well… let’s get technical…

another doodle, this one is a labradoodle
another doodle, this one is a labradoodle

According to Wikipedia… “A dog breed will consistently produce the desirable physical traits, movement and temperament that were developed over decades of selective breeding. “

Now, I don’t know about you, but doodle’s have been breeding pretty true for quite a while. They’re pretty consistent in their offspring after a few generations, the only think that’s genuinely inhibiting the “Breed” is that people keep breeding poodles and their counterpart as first generations, which is stopping the refinement process and the ‘selectiveness’ of the breeding. 

Oh! And the fact that there isn’t a “breed standard”  but that can be worked on, right?

“All That Money For A Mutt”

Okay, they’re expensive. But all dogs are mutts really, they’re just a mutt with a fancy label. And let’s face it, the price of gucci bag isn’t significantly more than the one at your local store for any other reason. It’s just a label. 

cute little cavapoo, why do people hate doodles again?
cute little cavapoo, why do people hate doodles again?

“They’re hypoallergenic” – A Myth Of Marketing

This is true. No dog is hypoallergenic, it’s something that’s been a marketing ploy for a long time, convincing parents that a hypoallergenic dog is going to be more family friendly. It’s like the label of “Pet safe” – they’re marketing ploys and never wholly true. 

Yes, hair based doodles are low allergy but they still produce dander, and they do still shed a bit of hair. They also still carry grass pollen and dust, so… not all that hypoallergenic afterall, huh? They’re no more hypoallergenic than a poodle. 

This? Makes a lot of the hardcore dog community angry. And I get that! But they’re not necessarily angry at doodle parents! Just the industry and how rough people make it. 

There’s Already A Dog Breed That Suits Your Needs

This one I kind of agree with.

The last count of breeds: 

American Kennel Club – 197 Recognised Breeds

United Kennel Club – 300 Recognised Breeds

Canadian Kennel Club – 187 Recognised Breeds

UK Kennel Club – 218 Recognised Breeds

Globally? There are around 450 recognised breeds of canis familiaris, the domestic dog.

Lots of these overlap (of course), but that gives you an idea of how many registered breeds there are. I promise you? That out of all of those, there is a dog breed that already there, existing and being responsibly bred for you to avail of. 

They may not be trendy, they may not be exactly the goldendoodle look – but – at the same time? They come with a heap of benefits too. 

cockapoo puppy, talk about a cute little doodle puppy!
cockapoo puppy, talk about a cute little doodle puppy!

“Breeding Doodles Is Unethical”

This one gets my goat, I won’t lie. 

Hardcore purists argue that doodles aren’t ethically bred because they’re not a breed – and … frankly? That’s a whole steaming heap of BS. 

They are a breed, they’re just not recognised doesn’t mean they’re not a breed. 

Then, with the sheer volume of unethical breeders out there? This is really redundant. Especially seen as they can be bred ethically. Just because they’re often not ethically bred, doesn’t mean they can’t be…

It’s a really funny thing, I talk a lot about the ‘betterment of the breed’ like a lot of people do, but just because they’re not a recognised breed, doesn’t make them any less legitimate. If you said that to American breeders of the Tamaskan dog – I’m pretty sure they’d have their teeth and claws at the ready, is it any wonder doodle breeders do too? 

Even if the breed isn’t formally recognised, you can breed for the betterment of the breed… 

The only real negative? Is that there are a lot of greedy sods jumping on the bandwagon, trying to make a quick dollar. 

Grooming Demands

This one I get. With anything doodle, they mostly require upkeep that’s greater than a golden retriever, labrador, cockerspaniel or any other kind of doodle. The problem with their coat is that it needs regular grooming – and knowledgeable grooming to get it right, and keep them well maintained. With the surge in popularity (as with any popular breed) it means a lot of people go in unprepared, but unlike a german shepherd who will just shed their double coat all over your floor for 12 months a year, a lack of grooming will result in matts and welfare issues. 

Training Demands

Doodles are part poodle, right? Which means they have a pretty good shot at getting a poodles brain. These are the worlds second most intelligent dog breed. Beating the german shepherd and being beaten only by a border collie. These dogs are Einstein relative to their species. Which means that as doodle parents? There’s a huge commitment to training. 

An idle brain never results in good things, and as a result of conflicting drivers and occasionally a misunderstanding that poodles are actually hunting dogs, it often comes to a head that the dog is devestatingly misunderstood and causes a lot of household issues (including the odd spontaneously exploding sofa… yes, I’ve worked on that one before with a doodle!)

a goldendoodle is poodle and golden retriever to make another cute doodle
a goldendoodle is poodle and golden retriever to make another cute doodle

The Curse Of Popularity. 

Essentially? Because they’re as popular as they are, they’re getting a lot of attention from people who are in it for the money, and not for the care and custodianship of what could be a fantastic breed. But this happens in so many of the worlds most popular dogs. 

Overall…

It’s basically that a poodle will have a better chance at being a good dog, of having it’s needs met, of being better bred and easier to train than it’s crossbred counterpart, if you’re considering a doodle? It may well be the right one for you! But…

  1. Make sure it’s a few generations deep, not a poodle crossed with a whatever-secondary-breed. 
  2. Make sure the breeder is doing their utmost with socialisation, health checks, temperament etc.
  3. Make sure there isn’t another breed out there that would check your boxes, 

And if you do that? You’re being a committed, responsible, puppy parent who is doing the very best by their dog? Then who cares what the world thinks. They’re your dog, they’re your baby. Let people judge! It’s none of their business. 

Got a doodle puppy and want to know what to expect? Sign up for Pupdates and get ahead of that super clever little pup!

Author, Ali Smith

Ali Smith is the Positive Puppy Expert, dog trainer and is the founder of Rebarkable. She is passionate about helping puppy parents get things right, right from the start. To help create a puppy capable of being a confident and adaptable family member and keep puppies out of shelters.

Ali has won multiple awards for her dog training, and has had her blog (this blog!) rated as 2021 & 2022 worlds’ best pet blog!

 

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15 Comments

  1. Aaron A.

    A purebred animal (dog), bred is bred for specific traits. This specifications are there for a reason, whether that be for a sporting purpose, such as retrieving, or purely as a lap dog. These dogs are bred to these specifications to maintain, or improve upon the breed in future generations.

    Doodles on the other hand are bred to one another regardless of traits. Instead doodles classification is based on a scale of genetic percentage. Mixing two breed together eliminated the predictability factor. You don’t know what you get in terms of physical, and personality traits. It gets even more complicated when breeding 2 doodles together. Genetically speaking it is possible to get a genetically full poodle from such a breeding because of how inheritance work.

    When it comes to our individual pets, that we love, and care about, it really doesn’t matter. It makes sense that regardless of purity the love for our furry family members should be put above all ells regardless of purity, but as the owner of a poodle I completely agree that breeding 2 different breeds of dogs together create mixed breeds, not a “doodle”, especially if doodle breeders continue to breed these dogs without regards to standardization.

    • Ali Smith

      This is actually the exact crux of the problem;

      Doodles are bred to be pets. And like any other dog breed, they can be poorly bred. We should not judge all breeds on their poorly bred counterparts.

      As for standardisation? I’m sure it will happen one day! But that day is not today. There are places like the golden doodle association of America (I think) that are working on it.

      Disparaging a breed for its relative youth? Is quite poor form and not needed. Instead of disparaging, try helping people ask for higher standards from their breeders!

  2. Lani W

    Ah, hell no. All these poodle mutts are a plague to the dog community, and anyone surrounding. The owners usually don’t even want a dog, but a teddybear-looking decorational obejct that matches their family portrait. They get tricked by all these “doodles are so playful and friendly” bs, when in reality they are unstable, often reactive, unpredictable mutts. Almost all the poodle mutts I’ve met, and sadly I meet them almost every day, have been matted to the bone and horribly untrained. Their owners are on the same level of denseness as Bullybreed backyardbreeders.There’s a legitimate reason why so many dogowners despise them, as they’re the cause of troubleful dog encounters so damn often. Also, who in their right mind would cross or want an neurotic Aussie x Poodle or Bernese Mountaindog x Poodle mix? Doodle people are messed up, and I hope the trend dies out soon.

    • Ali Smith

      Hey Lani, sorry you feel that way, however, any dog can be untrained, breed or cross is not to blame for human error.

  3. Nancy Gibson

    We’ve had two F1 labradoodles gotten from mom and pop breeders. We got to meet both parents each time. Like any first cross our doodles were radically different in looks and temperament. But each was sweet, trainable, trustworthy with children and Energetic! We got one after labs because my husband fell in love with someone else’s doodle. We are in our 70s and energetic is the operative word. We hike, camp, snowshoe and kayak. Our doodles loved it all.

    • Ali Smith

      They’re really great family dogs! Just have to make sure they’re responsibly bred, like any dog!

  4. Former Doodle Enthusiast

    You are conflating breed and type. It is a type of dog: a poodle mix. It’s not a breed. You can’t say that a bernedoodle and a cockerpoo are the same breed because the are all a doodle. So no, doodle is not a breed.

    It’s not just about being a recognized by an organization. It’s that nobody is even working toward a breed standard. There is no Doodle Club of America or UK that is actively guiding toward a breed of consistency. Just because someone COULD doesn’t mean it’s happening. Just because a dog could be theoretically be ethically bred doesn’t mean that it’s a reality. It’s not. Good quality poodles are not being sold to doodle breeders. Same for the other breeds.

    • Ali Smith

      Thanks but I’m not conflating anything. I’m referring to a group of breeds, which can be referred to in this manner, same as terriers can be referred to as a group of breeds.

      As to the quality of a doodle, unless you’ve checked every doodle breeder in the world that’s not a statement that should be made.

      The same as any breed of dog, designer cross, or mutt, they can be responsibly bred.

      Thanks for your input!

  5. Amanda Chering

    Doodles are so over breed and many, not all breeders are poor people trying to make a buck at the expensive of dogs. I know someone who makes over $40k a year, pays no taxes on that and gets rid of the female dogs once they no longer serve a purpose. They also keep the male dogs in barn kennels, the animals are not trained, not house broken, just commodities. It’s really sad. For this reason, I would NEVER purchase one. And how is F1 doodle healthy, you must get a “full blood” poodle, every doodle I have seen or met are mean and aggressive. Why take to beautiful breeds and mix them, so you can THINK they are hypoallergenic? I wish this trend of doodles would go away, but it won’t, too many white trash breeders made a TON of money off these dogs. It’s like dog trafficking tese animals into breeding over and over.

    • Ali Smith

      I’ll agree about the mis-marketing, but it’s good to remember that any dog can be irresponsibly bred. It’s the same reason German shepherds have temperament issues, and golden retriever can be riddled with cancer.

      It’s all relative.

    • Don’t fall for the Cancel Culture

      It’s called Research- that could be true of any breed, not specific to Doodles

      • Ali Smith

        Absolutely!

  6. no thanks

    F1 doodles are the healthiest generations.. not sure I agree with some of these points.

    • Ali Smith

      That depends on the quality of the dogs going in, and the breeder who is breeding forward – so long as what’s going in is better and better? each generation should be healthier and healthier!

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