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The Goldendoodle: Why You Shouldn’t Get One

The Goldendoodle is arguable the most popular type of doodle. 

If you don’t believe me just go to any dog park.  Chances are you will find more Goldendoodles than any other doodle type there.

The main reason for this is the combination of high intelligence that comes from both the Poodle and Golden Retriever breeds and the friendly, laidback attitude they get from the golden.

These two traits combine to make these dogs wonderful companions and easy to train.  

In fact most doodle owners agree that the Golden doodle makes a great family dog.  But that doesn’t mean these dogs are for everyone.  

The Goldendoodle: 10 Reasons You Shouldn't Get One -Title Picture with cream colored Goldendoodle

Sadly, there has been an increase in the number of Goldendoodles that are being rehomed once people realize they were not the right fit for their lifestyle. So before you go out and get one, join us as we go over 10 reasons why a Goldendoodle is not the right dog for you.

10 Reasons You Shouldn’t Get A Goldendoodle

Goldendoodle: 10 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Get One Goldendoodle sitting in grass

As wonderful as these dogs are, they aren’t for everyone. Here’s why!

1. High Energy

Goldendoodles are intelligent, high energy dogs. Their energy level comes from both the Poodle and Golden Retriever sides of the family.  Both of these purebred dogs were developed to spend time in the fields or water chasing down their owners catch. This required a lot of energy and stamina on the part of the dogs.

Nowadays Goldendoodles are companion dogs but they still have close to the same amount of energy that was bred into the parent breeds years ago. This energy needs to be burned off every day. This in turn means they require a lot of exercise and also mental stimulation

Without adequate exercise and mental stimulation they will begin to develop bad habits or decide to entertain themselves in ways you generally would not approve.  They may start to rummage through the garbage, bark at people or chew on a shoe. 

If you have a family that can play with the dog for a few hours a day, or go for long walks. Or if you are an active person that has the ability to take your dog with you when you run, hike or socialize then a Goldendoodle may be a good match. 

But if your family is too busy to pay attention to a dog or if you need to leave the dog home alone for long periods of time a Goldendoodle is not the right dog for you. 

Our Story

Our Golden Retriever once decided to entertain himself by chewing on my husband’s work boot when we weren’t home. He was an adult rescue dog so we knew teething was not the issue. What Charlie needed was more time outside socializing. So we increased his time at the park. He never chewed on another thing. But not everyone has the time to spend an hour or two a day at the park.  

2. High Maintenance Dogs

There’s a common belief that doodles are low maintenance. I believe this stems from two main traits. One is that they do not shed as much as a Golden Retriever and two that they are easy to train. While both of these things are true, that does not equal a low maintenance dog.

The time that you will save by not having to vacuum up their fur will instead is tripled by the time you need to brush and comb them. Having lived with a Golden I fully understand how much they can shed, especially when they change over their coats. Plus their hair gets everywhere including your clothes. But whether or not you have a dog that sheds a lot you still need to vacuum on occasion.

Also doodles with long wavy hair need to be brushed and line combed nightly. If you don’t keep up with the daily brushing that long, wavy or curly hair quickly becomes matted. Plus they require extra care when taking them out on raining days. The wet conditions can quickly turn a mat free pup into a matted mess after just one short walk in the rain.

You can cut down on the daily maintenance by keeping their fur short but then you also lose the fluffy look and feel so many people want. Plus keeping their fur short means frequent trips to the groomer or learning how to groom them yourself. Both of these things bring us to the next point. Doodles can be expensive to own.

Goldendoodle head

3. Goldendoodles are Expensive

Due to the high demand for these dogs Goldendoodles cost more to buy from a breeder than either a Poodle or Golden Retriever. Plus they will cost you more in yearly upkeep costs than a Golden.

Although all dogs require food and trips to the vet to keep them happy and healthy, Goldendoodles also require expensive professional grooming. You will also need to buy special brushes and combs to maintain their fur in between grooming sessions.

Of course it depends on where you live and the size of your doodle, but a trip to the groomer can easily cost between $65 to over $100. That doesn’t include a tip. Did I mention that they need to be groomed every 6 to 8 weeks.

If you add that up for a year it will cost you at least $600. That is on top of food, toys, chews and vet bills. You can keep the cost down by making sure they are not matted and by choosing a smaller dog like the mini Goldendoodle.

If you are looking for a smaller doodle you may want to also check out the mini Berendoodle, Cockapoo and Cavapoo

You can take also choose to groom them yourself but the initial cost of equipment is around $1,000. That’s almost two years of professional grooming cost.

When we decided to get a doodle we planned to groom her ourselves, but after attempting to groom her a few times during the pandemic we decided it was too much work. Plus she looked awful. There is a lot of patience and skill needed to groom a dog.

4. The Unknown

Lots of people including myself refer to Goldendoodles as a breed. That’s because there are breeders out there who are working towards that goal. But due to the Goldendoodle’s popularity there are a lot of people who are breeding them just to make a quick buck. These breeders put little though into the health or future traits of the offspring. This leads to the unknown. You could end up with a wonderful, easily trained pup or you could end up with a dog that has lots of issues.

One of the biggest issues with the unknown is shedding. Many breeders I have come across claim that Goldendoodles do not shed. However we know that is not possible, because every animal with hair will shed old hair to grow new hair, even humans. But doodles do tend to shed a lot less than their non-poodle counterparts.

Where the issue comes in is when a doodle sheds a lot and the person wanted a non-shedding dog. For some people shedding is a deal breaker. If you are one of these people you are much better off getting a purebred dog that is known for low-shedding rather than take your chance on a mix breed.

Another unknow with the Goldendoodle is their fur color. While most Goldendoodles are in the light red to blond colors sometimes they can be Black or Brown.

Of course just like with a non-poodle mix dog, you can brush them daily to keep the shedding to a minimum.

Golden doodle puppy

5. Requires a lot of Social Interaction

As I mentioned above, Poodles and Golden Retrievers were both originally developed to work closely with their people in the fields of Scotland, Germany and France. You can still see their desire to be with people and to please people in today’s dogs. These traits make the Goldendoodle both highly sociable and a great family dog. That is if you are able to spend the time to provide them with the attention they desire.

However if you work long hours and need to leave your pup home alone, they will most likely become bored and depressed. This can then lead to bad behaviors including destroying stuff in the home and suffering from separation anxiety.

6. Separation Anxiety

Due to their highly sociable traits Goldendoodles are prone to suffer from separation anxiety when left alone. These are not the types of dogs that can be left alone for long periods of time. They need to be around people most of the time. Again they are a great family dog when the family is around but can be a big headache for an active family that is always on the move, unless of course you can take them with you.

When we had our Golden we took him with us everywhere we went on the weekends. He loved to meet people and go to new places. Most Goldendoodle inherit that same friendliness and need to be with people.

Of course there are times that you simply can’t take them along. But those times should be the exception rather than the norm.

Sending them to doggy day care can help with the separation anxiety, but that can become expensive.

7. Allergies

Doodles are often billed as hypoallergenic. Technically this is true. But we need to keep in mind that hypoallergenic means that they are less likely to cause an allergic reaction. It does not guarantee that a person will not be allergic to the dog. While many people with pet allergies, including myself, are able to live with a doodle without suffering daily allergy symptoms not all people are the same and not all Goldendoodles have the same type of fur.

It’s important to note that pet allergies are caused by a protein that resides in a pet’s dander, saliva and urine. Pet dander is released into the air when a dog sheds a hair. So for dogs that shed less often there is less pet dander in the air to cause allergies, but you can still be allergic to their saliva. Also since not all poodle mixes are low shed you could end up with a dog that sheds a lot.

Doodle playing

8. Can be Mouthy

As I mentioned already both the Poodle and Golden are retriever type breeds. This means they are trained to use their mouth to do their job. While both tend to have a “soft mouth” they also have a tendency to use their mouths to communicate. It’s not uncommon for a Goldendoodle to grab a person by the arm or tug on clothes to get their attention. Our doodle used to do this when she was still a puppy.

While they mean no harm it can be scary for someone that does not know about this trait. This is particularly a problem when young kids are around young Goldendoodles that have not learned the proper way to use their mouths. Just for the record Goldendoodles and Golden can be taught not use their mouth on a person.

9. The Goldendoodle is Not a Guard Dog

If you are looking for a guard dog to keep watch over your home, Goldendoodles are not the right dog for the job. Just like the Golden, Goldendoodles are extremely friendly. They would rather welcome a stranger into their home rather than try to keep them out.

10. Prone to Certain Medical Issues

Although Goldendoodles are billed as being healthier than purebred dogs due to “hybrid vigor” this is not always the case. Since both the Poodle and Golden share some of the same health issues; like Hip Dysplasia and gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) complex commonly known as bloat there is a potential that they can still suffer from these common health conditions. If you really want a dog with hybrid vigor you should pick a doodle whose parents do not share the same health concerns.

Who is Best Suited to Live with a Goldendoodle?

  • Someone who is looking for a full time companion that will want to be by their side night and day.
  • A person that is looking for a friendly easy going pup whose silly antics can bring a smile to your heart.
  • Someone that doesn’t mind the daily brushing. In fact the daily brushing can be very relaxing and a great way to bond with your pup.
  • Someone who lives an active lifestyle and can bring their pup along.
  • And someone who doesn’t mind a little fur lying around.
  • Personally I think getting a doodle was a great choice for us, but they are not for everyone.
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