Whoodle dogs are energetic, confident, active and intelligent. A medium to large dog, it can weigh anywhere from 40 to 70 pounds, depending on whether they include a Standard or Miniature Poodle in their history. This fluffy pup boasts curly to wavy hair, and comes in a variety of colors. Whoodle dogs love to play, and need consistent training and socialization to manage their strong prey drive. Today we’ll look at the lifestyles and homes that best suit this mixed breed, and help you to adopt, buy or rescue a happy, healthy Whoodle puppy.
- What is a Whoodle dog?
- Whoodle appearance
- Coats and colors
- Whoodle grooming, shedding and allergies
- Miniature vs Standard Whoodle size
- Are Whoodles friendly?
- Training, exercise and health issues
- Are Whoodles good pets?
- Whoodle puppies, breeders and adoption
The Whoodle is an intelligent dog with a rich history as a working, sporting and farm bred companion. As a result they can be very cooperative, but also have high activity levels and prey drive. Big and bouncy, they are best suited to experienced homes with older children.
What is a Whoodle?
The Whoodle dog is usually a mix between a purebred Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier and a purebred Poodle. They can however be a second or third generation, bred themselves from other Whoodles, or a Whoodle and a Wheaten Terrier or Poodle! The combination of their parents will change the puppy’s characteristics a little, but in general you can expect Whoodles to be active, intelligent and affectionate dogs.
Whoodles, like other mixed dog breeds, take traits seemingly at random from either side of their lineage, which makes each individual Whoodle unique. Because of this huge range of lineage traits, adult Whoodles vary greatly in height, weight, coat color and texture, and health.
In general, many happy Whoodle owners have reported their pups to be delightfully playful and energetic dogs that are eager to please.
- Popularity: Rare
- Purpose: Companionship
- Weight: Standard 40 to 70 pounds, Miniature 25 to 40 pounds
- Temperament: Smart, loyal and active
Are you curious to learn more about this poodle and soft-coated wheaten terrier mix? If you were wondering what is a Whoodle, look no further. Are you considering getting a Wheaton Poodle, and are you wondering if they would be a good fit for your family? In this article, we’re going to go over everything you need to know about this mixed breed dog, including personality traits and physical health.
Sometimes called a Sweatenpoo, Wheaten-doodle or a Wheatenpoo, the Whoodle is a crossbreed. Whoodles are a recent breed, but we can learn quite a lot from their parents’ past.
The soft-coated Wheaten Terrier, also known more simply as the Wheaten, is a mid-sized sporting terrier. Wheatens are originally from Ireland and have been around for more than 200 years. Wheatens were developed from a medley of local farm dogs, and share ancestry with the Irish terrier and the Kerry Blue Terrier.
They were bred to be an all-purpose farm dog. Their initial duties included herding and guarding livestock, as well as vermin hunting. Because they were bred for the cooler weather of Ireland, soft-coated Wheaten Terriers do well in temperate to colder climates. Due to their hair, they are at risk for overheating in warmer climates and on especially hot days.
A popular breed of dog, some state the poodle originated in Germany as a water sporting dog. European canine federations state this breed originated in France. Either way, Poodles specifically were used for water retrieving, such as duck and waterfowl hunting.
They are considered to be one the most intelligent and trainable breeds, being classified as the second most intelligent dog breed after the Border Collie.
Although this is still a rare mix, some Whoodles are leaving their mark on the world! Abby, a miniature whoodle, is helping high schoolers deal with everyday stress, while the fluffy Bitsy just appeared in one of the pics of the month at a local Northern New York magazine.
The Whoodle has a sturdy, athletic build, with dark eyes and folded ears. As with pretty much every other trait, the look of your Whoodle dog will be a mix of both of its parents. They tend to have a fairly sturdy build, with a range of coat colors and textures.
Wheatens are born with reddish-brown coats or white. As they grow old, their coat grows out to a whiter, wheaten color. When puppies reach 3 years of age, their coats will already have reached their definite color. Poodles have very distinct curly coats that come in a variety of colors.
Adult coat colors among Whoodles are quite varied. Whoodles have been bred in colors such as black, chocolate, red, silver, cream or apricot.
Whoodles lack an undercoat, and their single-layer hair keeps growing. Their soft, plush coats have only one layer, making them shed slightly less than other dogs. Because of this, they need regular grooming and brushing to keep their skin and coat healthy.
Because both Poodles and Wheatens have a single layer of fur, the coat of Whoodle dogs is more like hair than fur. Their coats need to be consistently groomed to avoid matting and skin irritation, and should be clipped regularly because it grows indefinitely.
The combination of a curly poodle coat and a silky wheaten coat make a whoodle’s coat unpredictable until they are full grown.
They range from nearly straight, corded to curly. It also can be medium to long in length. However, their coats do tend to be rather dense. You may have to groom your Whoodle using the same methods as your average poodle owner.
Are Whoodle Dogs Hypoallergenic?
Both poodles and soft-coated wheaten terriers are considered hypoallergenic dogs, because they don’t have traditional “fur”. Nevertheless, no dog can truly be “hypoallergenic”. So-called hypoallergenic breeds have been called that because they lack an undercoat, and only have one layer of fur.
In spite of this, dog allergens are found not in the hair itself, but in the dog’s saliva and skin, which all dogs have. Both Wheatens and Poodles shed slightly less than most other dogs, because they have a single layer of hair, but that won’t alleviate allergies for those who suffer from them.
Poodles also come in three different sizes. The Standard is over 15 inches in shoulder height, the Miniature stands between 10 and 15 inches tall, and the Toy version is under 10 inches.
Wheatens are a medium-sized dog with a sturdy build. They range in size from 16 to 20 inches in height and tend to weigh from 30 to 50 pounds.
The Whoodle is usually a Standard Poodle Wheaten Terrier mix, meaning that your dog is likely to grow to 15-20 inches in height.
Because the Poodle comes in three different sizes, breeders are able to create miniature versions of its crosses as well. Even though most Whoodles are the result of crossing a Standard Poodle with a Wheaten, some breeders try their hand with a Miniature or Toy Poodle and a Wheaten Terrier.
Some Miniature Whoodles can be found, and usually weigh from 20 to 45 pounds, and stand at less than 15 inches of height. These pups are even less common than their standard counterparts, so you might have a harder time finding one.
This is an intelligent, energetic and playful breed. Known to be easygoing and loyal to their families, they can be standoffish with strangers if they take after their Poodle parent.
Highly energetic, both physically and mentally, they need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation to remain calm in the home.
They usually are observed barking only to alert their humans about strangers or other things of concern. Many owners state Wheatens are great watch dogs, but not guard dogs, because they rarely get aggressive.
Their sporting and hunting dog history means that they do have a strong prey drive. This means that, unless they are socialized with other animals as puppies, they may not be safe around other pets such as cats. Local wildlife like squirrels, rabbits and small birds might also be in danger!
They should be socialized to be good with children and other pets. A stable and relaxed home gives the best environment. If socialized early and correctly, a Wheaten Terrier Poodle mix can do well in households with children and other pets.
Are Whoodles Smart?
Coming from two intelligent breeds of dogs, Whoodles tend to be quite smart and easy to train. Although the hunting history of both Poodles and Wheatens make the Whoodle have a very strong prey drive. Their guard tendencies can develop into annoying barking behavior if not properly channeled.
Using early positive reinforcement training will achieve better results. Harsh training methods based on yelling and other negative consequences will only instill fear and aggression in an otherwise happy and playful mix.
Whoodles are moderate to very active, requiring regular walks and playtime for exercise to maintain their health and fitness levels. Because of their Poodle heritage, they are very smart and get bored easily. Avoid bad behaviors by offering different training options and keeping your sessions engaging.
If you see your pup starts having trouble focusing, cut the training and let them get some energy out. You’ll see they will happily return to their training after a bit of exercise.
As we have already mentioned, socialization is key for this crossbreed. When done correctly, it will curb the Whoodle’s high prey drive and make it easier to live with smaller animals and children.
Socialization is also important to prevent your new pup from becoming a barker.
Because of their guarding instincts, they will tend to let you know about everything they consider a threat -loudly. Let them know what noises and situations are normal to keep them from barking unnecessarily.
Many will argue that hybrid dogs have better health than purebred dogs, because they have a larger gene pool. But it’s worth remembering that hybrid dog breed such as a Whoodle are vulnerable to the issues and diseases of both parents.
Poodle Health Issues
Their health problems can include kidney issues, thyroid issues, gastric dilation volvulus and hip dysplasia. Ear problems are also prevalent due to their nonshedding hair growing into their ear canals, causing blockages and infections. Consistent ear cleaning and care will keep them healthy.
Poodles are also commonly affected by Addison’s disease. This is a hormonal disorder that occurs when the adrenal glands aren’t properly producing the hormones they should.
Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier Health Issues
Wheatens tend to be relatively healthy, but are known to suffer occasionally from a few diseases or issues. There are two protein-wasting conditions that soft-coated wheaten terriers are known to have. Both can be managed with a strict diet and medications but only if caught early.
One of these conditions is protein-losing nephropathy, known as PLN. This is usually seen in large breed dogs, females are especially at risk.
The other protein wasting condition is protein-losing enteropathy or PLE. It causes dogs to be unable to properly absorb protein from their food during digestion.
While some experts consider that there is a genetic predisposition, we don’t understand the mode of inheritance. This means that your best bet is asking your breeder for the health history of the Wheaten parent, to make sure they don’t suffer from these dangerous conditions.
Other health issues Soft-coated Wheaten Terriers are known for include Addison’s disease, renal dysplasia, inflammatory bowel disease, allergies and atopic eczema.
How Long Do Whoodles Live?
Poodles have an average life span of 10 to 13 years. Wheaten Terriers will live on average 10 – 12 years.
Mixed breed dogs live on average a little longer than their purebred counterparts, so you can confidently say that a Whoodle should life at least as long as their parents.
Are Whoodles Good Family Pets?
An important question about bringing any dog into your home is if the dog will be a good fit for your family. Both the Wheaton Terrier and the Poodle are active, highly intelligent breeds. This makes the Whoodle a smart dog that needs to be properly stimulated to ensure they remain non-destructive and calm when left alone during the workday.
This crossbreed is better for active families that enjoy spending time outside and will offer their pup at least an hour of daily exercise and playtime.
Because of their strong prey drive, they will need an experienced owner willing to put the time and effort into their training and socialization.
They can get used to living with other animals like cats and other dogs, but they will need constant supervision and proper training. Your backyard should be fenced to prevent your new pup from running after cats, dogs and local wildlife.
Wheaten Terrier Poodle mix dogs do better with families with older children. Overall, this mix is good-natured, playful and cuddly, given they are provided with proper exercise time.
Pros And Cons of Getting A Whoodle
- Friendly and smart
- Easy to train
- Great dog for older families
- Strong prey drive that needs consistent training
- Highly active dog needing around an hour of daily exercise
- Curly coat in need regular brushing and grooming
Rescuing a Whoodle
Rescuing a dog can be a very fulfilling experience for both of you. Especially when it comes to Terriers and their mixes, many of them end up in shelters because their original owners didn’t understand their training and exercise needs.
If you are convinced the Wheaton and Poodle mix is the right choice for your family, looking at your local shelters and rescue centers might be a good option.
Once at the shelter, let the volunteers advise you on the best choice for what you’re looking for. Because they have dealt with these dogs, they know their personalities and needs really well.
It will be easier to make the right choice after you have spent some afternoons with the dogs, so get ready for this to be a lengthier process than it would be just buying a puppy. Nevertheless, it can also be a great experience and will guarantee you end up with the right pup for your pack.
Being an unrecognized and still relatively rare breed, finding a Whoodle puppy is going to be a bit of a chore. Once you do find a breeder and because of the wide range of possible traits, you’ll want to handpick your puppy.
An online search for a breeder is a good place to start. It could also be good to ask around for recommendations for reliable breeders. Check with any breed fan clubs online, or ask your local animal shelter, groomers or veterinarians.
You’re going to want a breeder who’s done the work to screen out health and personality problems from both parents.
It’s important to choose a breeder that has their dog’s best interest in mind. Puppy mills and pet shops usually breed their dogs without paying attention to their health or the genetic conditions the parents might pass onto the pups. Buying from these sources just feeds a system that doesn’t care about dogs, and is only focused on economic gains.
A responsible breeder will only mix healthy, happy parents. Regardless of a breeder being a small hobby breeder or a professional breeder, ask to tour their facility and meet both parents of the puppies.
As with checking out any puppy breeder, you’ll want to inspect not just the puppy’s area for cleanliness and care but the rest of the home. This includes areas the parent dogs and other animals have access to.
You’ll want to be sure that puppies are being properly socialized and handled. Be wary of any breeders who always have puppies available or who are breeding multiple litters at a time.
Being a popular “designer” hybrid breed, there are unfortunately going to be fashion breeders who are simply trying to turn a profit and don’t have the animal’s health or well-being in mind.
Raising a Whoodle Puppy
Caring for a cute pup is a big responsibility. Check out our handy guides made to help you with all aspects of puppy care and training.
These will be especially useful if you’re new to having dogs, or properly caring for them.
Everything from introducing your new pup to your beloved cat, to potty training, is easier when you have an expert by your side!
Whoodle dog products and accessories
Because your new pup might take after their Poodle side, here are some of our top recommendations to take care of their coat so they are healthy and happy.
If this one doesn’t look like the right choice, here are other dog breeds you might want to consider:
- Pomapoo (Pomeranian Poodle Mix)
- Scoodle (Scottish Terrier Poodle Mix)
- Norfolk Terrier
- Blue Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Whoodle Breed Rescues
Because they are a relatively new mix, Whoodle rescue centers are nonexistent. Nevertheless, one or two might have found their way into other breed rescues for lack of a better fit.
Try your hand at Terrier and Poodle rescues around your home and check if they have a Whoodle available for adoption. You might be surprised!
Do you have a Whoodle? What do you love most about your canine companion? We want to hear from you in the comments below.
References And Resources
- Gough A, Thomas A, O’Neill D. 2018 Breed Predispositions to Disease In Dogs and Cats. Wiley Blackwell
- O’Neill et al. 2013. Longevity and Mortality of Owned Dogs In England. The Veterinary Journal
- Adams VJ, et al. 2010. Results of a Survey of UK Purebred Dogs. Journal of Small Animal Practice.
- Schalamon et al. 2006. Analysis of Dog Bites In Children Who Are Younger Than 17 Years. Pediatrics
- Duffy D et al. Breed differences in canine aggression. Applied Animal Behavior Science 2008
- Strain G. Deafness prevalence and pigmentation and gender associations in dog breeds at risk. The Veterinary Journal 2004
- Packer et al. 2015. Impact of Facial Conformation On Canine Health. PlosOne
- Goodwin, L. V., et al., 2011, “Hypercoagulability in dogs with protein‐losing enteropathy,” Journal of veterinary internal medicine, Volume 25.2, pgs. 273-277
- Littman, Meryl P., et al., 2000, “Familial protein‐losing enteropathy and protein‐losing nephropathy in Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers: 222 cases (1983–1997),” Journal of veterinary internal medicine, Volume 14.1, pgs. 68-80.
- Morgan, J.P., Wind, A., and Davidson, A.P., 2000, “Hereditary bone and joint diseases in the dog: osteochondroses, hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia,” Schlütersche.
- Sadek, D. and Schaer, M., 1996, “Atypical Addison’s disease in the dog: a retrospective survey of 14 cases,” Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association, Volume 32.2, pgs.159-163.
- Littman, M. P., Dambach, D. M., Vaden, S. L., & Giger, U. (2000). Familial protein‐losing enteropathy and protein‐losing nephropathy in Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers: 222 cases (1983–1997). Journal of veterinary internal medicine, 14(1), 68-80.
- Littman, M. P., Wiley, C. A., Raducha, M. G., & Henthorn, P. S. (2013). Glomerulopathy and mutations in NPHS1 and KIRREL2 in soft-coated Wheaten Terrier dogs. Mammalian genome, 24(3-4), 119-126.