Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle – it’s a tough choice! The differences between a Labrdoodle and a Goldendoodle aren’t massive, but they can have an impact on the dog you end up raising. In this article we are going to help you decide which of these gorgeous mixes could be the perfect fit for your lifestyle. From temperament to grooming needs, training, behavior and more!
The Labradoodle is a cross between a purebred Labrador and a purebred Standard Poodle. Whereas the Goldendoodle is a mix between a purebred Golden Retriever and a purebred Standard Poodle. Both of these mixes are F1 generations, as Labradoodles and Goldendoodles aren’t their own breeds. Read on to find out which is best for your home – Labradoodle or Goldendoodle?
What do Labradoodles and Goldendoodles have in common?
|Color:||A wide variety – including shades of black, yellow, golden, chocolate, white and more|
|Coat:||Varies from long and scruffy to short tight curls. May be low shedding|
|Temperament:||Friendly, intelligent, active|
|Training:||Eager to please, respond well to positive reinforcement techniques|
The Differences Between Labradoodles and Goldendoodles
These differences are averages. All Doodle dogs vary, depending on their parents, and a healthy dose of luck!
|Large||Not quite so large!|
|22-24” tall||Around 22” tall|
|Very active||Quite active|
|Needs lots of exercise||Needs moderate daily exercise|
|May be more excitable||May be calmer|
Truthfully, there is no one “better” choice in this particular debate, since both dogs have a tremendous amount to offer to the right owner! Your only task is to learn about each dog in turn and decide whether the Labradoodle or Goldendoodle will be a better fit for your lifestyle, family, available time, and interests.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Size
The first important difference between Labradoodle and Goldendoodle dogs is their adult size. Labradoodle dogs, of course, are a cross between a Labrador Retriever and a Poodle. Goldendoodles, in contrast, are a cross between a Golden Retriever and a Poodle.
Some breeders say that adult Standard Goldendoodles outweigh adult Standard Labradoodles and some breeders say that just the opposite is the case! However, when comparing weight extremes, if both parent dogs for either hybrid dog breed litter are full size, you can expect a Standard Labradoodle to slightly outweigh a Standard Goldendoodle in adulthood. Their size will be influenced by their individual parents. So, it’s best to take a look at them to predict exactly how big puppies will turn out.
Labrador Retrievers reach 55 to 80 pounds and Standard Poodles reach 40 to 70 pounds. So, at its biggest, a Labradoodle can weigh up to 80 pounds. Generally, adults will be around 22 to 24 inches tall.
Golden Retrievers reach 55 to 75 pounds. So, they come in weighing a little less than a standard Lab. This means both parents are smaller than Labs, so it’s likely a Goldendoodle puppy will be smaller on average. At their heaviest, they could weigh up to 75 pounds. But, they’ll likely only grow to around 22 inches in height. There is a great degree of variance depending on the size of each parent dog!
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Coat
Labradoodle or Goldendoodle dogs can both have quite a variety of coats. Their fur can be anything from long and fluffy to short and curly. It will entirely depend on the traits they inherit from their individual parents. The same can be said of their coat color. The Standard Poodle has a much larger spectrum of potential coat colors. So, take a look at the exact colors of the parent dogs you’re breeding to predict how your puppies will turn out.
The Labradoodle typically has shorter hair that is wavy and wiry. Coat colors can vary quite a bit. Black, red, yellow, white, cream, chocolate, and dual or tri-colors are common in Labradoodles.
The Goldendoodle’s hair tends to be longer and may either be straight or wavy/curly. Coat colors do not vary quite so much in this hybrid dog breed, tending to stay in the gold/caramel/red spectrum. But, there is such a thing as the black Goldendoodle.
Are Labradoodle or Goldendoodle Dogs Hypoallergenic?
While researchers have now established that there is no 100 percent hypoallergenic pet dog, the Labradoodle or Goldendoodle hypoallergenic comparison delivers two dogs that come about as close as you can get to being hypoallergenic!
Many owners don’t realize that pet shedding is not the true allergy trigger. The trigger is a protein called Fel D 1 that is present in dog saliva, skin, and hair. When your dog sheds, this protein is shed out along with the discarded hair. You then come in contact with the protein as you clean and that causes the allergic reaction.
For this reason, selecting a dog that sheds less copiously and less frequently can help control the severity and frequency of pet allergy symptoms. Weekly grooming can also help with this!
The best way to ensure you select a close-to-hypoallergenic doodle is to work with a second-generation (F2) or f1B breeder. In the F2 generation, the breeder is crossing two parents who are true doodles, rather than a Standard Poodle with either a Labrador Retriever or a Golden Retriever.
Crossing two doodles is the best way to control for coat shedding in puppies. You can ask the breeder if their puppies are F1 (Standard Poodle cross with Lab/Golden retriever) or F2 (two doodle parent dogs). This will ensure your new puppy has the lowest likelihood of shedding. But remember you can never guarantee the qualities your pup is going to inherit. If you have allergies, the best way to see if one of these pups will suit you is to spend lots of time with it before you can bring it home.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Other Care
The specific care needs for your Labradoodle or Goldendoodle dog will vary depending on the traits they inherit from their parents. But, all dogs will need regular grooming to control shedding and keep their fur from tangling. Knots and tangles can be painful for dogs, so make sure to gently work them out each grooming session.
If they have the curlier fur of the Poodle parent, things like dirt can get caught in the tight curls. So, check them over after they play outside. Check your Labradoodle or Goldendoodle’s ears for wax, infections, or parasites whenever you groom them. Make sure you also clip their nails regularly.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Temperament
The difference between Labradoodle and Goldendoodle dogs also extends to their temperament. Among doodle breeders, the general consensus is that Labradoodles and Goldendoodles are both very loyal, loving, active, friendly pups that can make great family pets.
However, if your interest in selecting a doodle is to involve your new dog in a specific type of work, such as farming, hunting, service, or therapy dog work, each hybrid breed has some important temperament differences.
Labradoodles have a slightly higher energy level with a more reserved personality than Goldendoodles. They also tend to be slightly stronger and more active than Goldendoodles. For hunting/farm work or public service, this combination of traits makes the Labradoodle an overall better pick. Breeders also pick Labradoodles as the top choice for guide dog, seeing eye dog, and service dog work.
Goldendoodles tend to have calmer yet more outgoing personalities overall than Labradoodles. They have a lower overall energy level with unflagging happiness and joy that can make them the life of the party. Because of their sunny, outgoing personalities, breeders pick Goldendoodles as the top choice for therapy dog and hospital/nursing home work.
Goldendoodle Labradoodle Socialization
The Labradoodle, with its overall more reserved, somewhat guarded approach to new spaces, new situations, and new people, may present a slightly higher risk to display guarding tendencies. Especially if this dog is not well socialized. Labrador Retrievers can sometimes display behaviors like biting and rough play that can be mistaken for guarding tendencies or aggression, simply because these dogs (especially the English/show dog line) often take longer to mature.
However, neither Labradoodles or Goldendoodles tend to display problematic guarding or aggression behaviors so long as consistent training is introduced and maintained. You’ll need to socialize both Goldendoodle Labradoodle mix dogs well from a young age to get the best temperament from them.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Exercise
Goldendoodle Labradoodle breeds have quite similar exercise needs. They will suit active families best, as they do need regular exercise. If you’re looking for a breed you can take on hikes and adventures outside with you and your family, both of these breeds will make a good choice.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Training
Both Labradoodles and Goldendoodles are very smart! In fact, the parent dogs – Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, and Poodles – are also very intelligent. All three parent dogs come equipped with a strong desire to please “their” people and strong inborn incentives to partner with people in daily life. This can make Labradoodles and Goldendoodles quite easy to train and they are very fast learners! These dogs both respond best to positive training methods.
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Health
Goldendoodle Labradoodle mix dogs are known to be generally healthy. However, a puppy from either hybrid dog line will only be as healthy as the breeder’s own genetic health testing program.
Poodles can be prone to hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), patellar luxation (mini or toy Poodles), and other eye issues. Other less severe health concerns can include allergies, skin conditions, and thyroid disorders. Any health issue in the parent dog line can in theory be passed along to the puppies.
Labrador Retrievers can be particularly prone to certain health conditions, including:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia
- Exercise-induced collapse
- Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)
- Ear infections
Golden Retrievers are particularly prone to:
- Hip and elbow dysplasia
- Eye issues
- Heart disease
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle Lifespan
If you’re choosing a dog to become a part of your family, you’ll also want to know how long they’ll be with you for. Labradoodle Goldendoodle mix dogs can make great family members! The difference between Labradoodle and Goldendoodle lifespans is not much at all on average.
A study into the lifespan of dogs in England suggests that Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers actually have the same average lifespan – 12.5 years! It found that Poodles live on average, 12 years. Your dog’s lifespan will depend on a variety of things. But you can expect a standard sized Labradoodle or Goldendoodle to live to around 12 years!
Choosing a Healthy Puppy
It is wise to always ask to see the breeder’s parent dog health records to ensure breeding stock has been cleared of known heritable health concerns. Reputable breeders typically provide an initial guarantee of health for 12 to 24+ months as well as a take-back guarantee should the puppy not work out for some reason.
Steer clear of any breeder that does not volunteer both as part of the process of purchasing a puppy! You can use our puppy search guide for more information on finding and choosing the healthiest puppy.
Labradoodle Goldendoodle Rescue
Mixed breed dogs are becoming more and more popular – particularly Labradoodles and Goldendoodles. So, you can consider choosing a rescue dog. There are even a few rescue centers dedicated entirely to doodle mixes. Here are some links to get you started in your search.
- IDOG Rescue
- Delaware Valley Golden Retriever Rescue – Also rehomes Goldendoodles and Labradoodles
- Doodles for Rehoming (UK)
- Doodle Aid (UK)
Labradoodle vs Goldendoodle – Which is Best?
Both of these breeds are great family dogs, but will need general care like grooming and regular exercise. Both are intelligent, friendly, and outgoing when socialized. After reading through this information, which dog breed do you favor? Have you ever cared for a Labradoodle or a Goldendoodle before? Which one will suit your family best? Please drop us a comment to share your thoughts on your favorite hybrid dog breed and your reasons!
References and Resources
- Canine Health Information Center Database
- O’Neill (et al), ‘Longevity and Mortality of Owned Dogs in England’, The Veterinary Journal (2013)
- Farrell L. (et al), ‘The Challanges of Pedigree Dog Health: Approaches to Combating Inherited Disease’, Canine Genetics and Epidemiology (2015)
- Oliver J. & Gould D., ‘Survey of Ophthalmic Abnormalities in the Labradoodle in the UK’, British Veterinary Association (2012)
- Downs L. (et al), ‘Genetic Screening for PRA-Associated Mutations in Multiple Dog Breeds Shows that PRA is Heterogeneous Within and Between Breeds’, Veterinary Ophthalmology (2014)
- ‘Doodle Genetics’, Safari Doodles