Golden Labradoodle – Ultimate Breed Guide

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As you probably already know, the Labradoodle is a designer dog that was created by crossing a purebred Poodle with a purebred Labrador retriever. The breed is highly intelligent, lively, outgoing, and sociable, making them ideal for life as family pets and service dogs, too. 

But is the golden Labradoodle the same breed as a Goldendoodle? Do golden Labradoodles shed more than other Labradoodles? And what’s the difference between golden Labradoodles and the other colors that this lovely breed comes in?

Read this comprehensive guide to find out!

What Is A Golden Labradoodle?

Labradoodle Coat Types

As is the case with all varieties of Labradoodles, the golden version is a mixed breed dog that’s produced by crossing a purebred Labrador retriever with a purebred Poodle

A golden Labradoodle is not a separate breed in its own right; it’s simply a Labradoodle that came out a beautiful sandy, blonde, golden color!

Genetics

But how easy is it to breed a golden Labradoodle? Surely, you simply mate a golden Poodle with a golden Labrador retriever?

No! There’s more to it than that.

Canine coat color genetics are not always predictable. Labrador retrievers come in three colors; black, golden, and chocolate. On the other hand, the Poodle comes in a very wide range of colors, including black, white, apricot, lavender, brown, and cream, to name a few.

So, in theory, it could take several generations of careful breeding before the breeder finally comes up with puppies of the desired color. F1 Doodles are generally more predictable in coat color than multigenerational dogs. 

In the case of F1 golden Labradoodles, the puppy’s parents are typically a purebred golden Labrador retriever and a purebred golden Standard Poodle.

Labradoodle Origins

Australian Labradoodle is a mix between the Labrador Retriever, Poodle and Cocker Spaniel.

Labradoodles first appeared in the mid-1980s. The breed was created by Australian breeder Wally Conron who was puppy breeding manager for the Royal Guide Dog Association of Australia, in response to a request from a blind woman from Hawaii whose husband had a severe pet allergy.

Qualified breeder Conron wanted to breed a guide dog that didn’t shed. As it turned out, a purebred Standard Poodle proved unsuitable. However, a cross between the Labrador retriever, a proven service dog, and the non-shedding Poodle worked, and the Labradoodle was born.

However, don’t get the Australian Labradoodle and the regular Labradoodle confused. These are two different breeds!

So, what makes Labradoodle’s two parent breeds so suitable for the job Conron had in mind?

History Of The Labrador Retriever and Standard Poodle

Standard Poodles first appeared in Germany around 400 years ago, where they were used by hunters as water dogs, retrieving shot fowl from water and marshes. 

The Labrador retriever comes from Newfoundland, Canada. These dogs also worked alongside men in a similar role to that of the German Poodle.

As a result of their breeding, both these breeds are smart, trainable, and love to be around people. So, when the breeds are used to create a hybrid, you get an energetic, intelligent, sociable, highly trainable pup that makes a wonderful family dog and can perform a service role, too.

What’s The Difference Between a Golden Labradoodle and a Goldendoodle?

You’ve probably heard of a Goldendoodle, and you might be wondering if the two breeds are one and the same.

So, Goldendoodles and golden Labradoodles are both designer crossbreeds that are not purebreds. Both breeds have a purebred Standard, Toy, or Miniature Poodle as one parent, usually the father. However, the golden Labradoodle has a Labrador retriever as the other parent, whereas the Goldendoodle has a Golden Retriever.

However, it’s actually pretty easy to confuse the two breeds, as they can look very similar, especially if both have golden coats.

How Is The Labradoodle’s Golden Coat Color Achieved?

The golden Labradoodle’s coat color is more correctly termed “apricot.” The color can range from a dark orangy-gold hue to a light golden cream color. According to the official Labradoodle dog breed standard, the color should be similar to the “inside of a ripe apricot.”

So, how does the golden Labradoodle end up with such a beautiful golden coat? Well, that’s down to genetics. 

All dogs carry two pigment types, eumelanin (black) and phaeomelanin (red). Now, those two colors obviously don’t mix to create gold, but they can be influenced by the actions of certain genes called extensions.

In Labradoodles with golden or apricot coats, phaeomelanin is changed from the default red base shade to a lighter, golden, or apricot coat color. The base pigment, eumelanin, is altered to control the dog’s nose and eye color. 

Golden Labradoodles often have black noses with eye color that ranges from hazel to brown.

Does Labradoodle Coat Color Affect Temperament?

Although golden Labradoodles are undoubtedly beautiful, you might wonder if their coat color affects their temperament and behavior.

Well, the Labradoodle breed is still relatively new on the scene, so there’s not much data recorded to suggest that coat color directly has any influence on temperament.

However, the most important and influential factors that can have a bearing on a puppy’s temperament are:

  • High-quality breeding
  • Safe breeding
  • Early socialization
  • Correct, sympathetic training practices

Regardless of the Labradoodle’s color, these are usually friendly, sociable dogs that love to be around their human owners.

What Size Are Golden Labradoodles?

There are several defined sizes of Labradoodles to choose from, and that applies to all color variations. However, because of the hybrid nature of the breed, sizes vary tremendously according to what size Poodle was used in the cross and the puppy’s generation.

Generally, male golden Labradoodles are larger than females

The following table below shows the typical golden Labradoodle sizes. However, a good breeder should be able to give you a good idea of how their puppies will turn out once fully grown.

Labradoodle Size

Weight

Height

Labradoodle Size

Weight Range

Height Range

Labradoodle Size

Weight Range

Height Range

Miniature

15 to 25 pounds

14 to 16 inches

Medium

30 to 45 pounds

17 to 20 inches

Standard

50 to 65 pounds

21 inches and over

Golden Labradoodles Coat Types

When it comes to golden Labradoodle coat type, there are three main varieties; straight or hair coats, fleece or wavy coats, and curly coats. That said, you should know that Labradoodle adult coat type can change as the puppy matures.

Hair Coat Type

The hair coat type is the closest to the Labrador retriever’s coat type. The fur is typically wavy and sheds quite heavily, which makes these dogs a bad choice for allergy sufferers and those who don’t like vacuuming!

Fleece Coat Type

Fleece coats tend to be wavier than hair coats, often forming ringlets. These dogs take more coat genetic makeup from the Poodle side of their family and don’t shed as much as their straighter-coated counterparts.

You’ll still need to brush your Doodle every day or so to keep mats at bay.

Curly Coats

Golden Labradoodle sitting on the grass

Curly-coated golden Labradoodles have similar coats to their Poodle parent. That means the fur doesn’t shed much, which is good news for allergy sufferers.

However, this coat type is very prone to matting and tangling, and you need to spend time brushing your dog every day to prevent that.

Both fleece and curly-coated golden Labradoodles should be taken to a professional grooming salon every four to six weeks. Owners of dogs with these coat types usually opt for a short clip that cuts down on everyday grooming time, keeps the coat from matting, and looks smart.

A golden Labradoodle can have any coat type, depending on his generation and which parent breed the puppy most takes after. Note that the puppy coat type and color can change as the dog matures, so you never quite know how your furbaby will turn out!

How Long Do Golden Labradoodles Live?

Golden Labradoodles tend to be pretty healthy dogs that enjoy an average life expectancy of around ten to 15 years.

Small dogs typically live longer than larger ones. Note that if you choose a Mini Labradoodle, he could live for as long as 18 years, so be prepared for a long commitment!

Are Golden Labradoodles Healthy Dogs?

Labradoodle Dog sitting

As golden Labradoodles are crossbreed dogs, they are generally healthy dogs.

How so?

Well, the crossbreed dog, in general, enjoys an advantage referred to as “hybrid vigor.” Purebred parent dogs are inbred, so the gene pool within that specific breed becomes smaller. That can mean hereditary genetic health issues and physical health defects start to appear more frequently or become more exaggerated with every generation.

For example, over the years, flat-faced or brachycephalic dogs have been bred with flatter and flatter faces. In many breeds, that deformity has led to severe breathing difficulties, exercise intolerance, and severe respiratory distress in warm, humid weather.

Hybrid vigor happens when you cross two dogs of totally different breeds. That means the prospective parent dogs don’t have the same breed-specific health issues. Therefore, crossbreed puppies are typically healthier, stronger, and longer-lived than purebred animals.

Golden Labradoodle Potential Health Problems

Despite their hybrid vigor advantage, golden Labradoodles can be affected by a few genetic health issues, including:

  • Hip dysplasia
  • Epilepsy
  • Addison’s disease
  • Bloat
  • Thyroid problems
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

Well-bred puppies are produced by using two parent dogs that have been carefully health-screened and found to be free from the above genetic health conditions.

So, always buy your golden Labradoodle puppy from a high-quality breeder who can provide you with documentary proof that the pup’s potential parents have been health tested for the common genetic health conditions that can affect the breed.

Puppy Mills

The dark side of the Labradoodle breed’s popularity is that unscrupulous “backyard breeders” have seen that demand for puppies as a money-making opportunity. 

In recent years, and especially during the lockdown, demand for designer puppies has soared. In response, unlicensed bad breeder operations, commonly referred to as puppy mills, have sprung up across the country, churning out puppies to meet demand and make a quick buck. 

Often, the breeding dogs that these puppy farms use are kept in poor conditions and not health-checked. Consequently, the puppies have suspect health and sometimes poor temperaments because they have not been properly socialized from birth.

If you see a golden Labradoodle advertised online for a very low price, walk away. Reputable breeders do not sell their well-bred puppies cheap! 

Golden Labradoodle Exercise Requirements

The Labradoodle’s parents are both working breeds, and their offspring are usually energetic dogs that need plenty of daily exercise to remain happy and healthy.

Golden Labradoodles are smart dogs that need plenty of mental stimulation too. A bored Doodle can become destructive or barky if not provided with the physical and mental outlets he needs. 

  • Obedience training is an excellent way of satisfying both your dog’s mental and physical exercise requirements.
  • Accompanying you on a hike or jog is another excellent way of giving your lively dog a good workout.
  • Poodles and Labs are both water dogs, so a trip to the lake or beach for a swim is a great way of exercising your Labradoodle, especially in summer.
  • Labradoodles are usually sociable dogs, so a game with other pups at the dog park is a good idea.
  • Senior Labradoodles will enjoy a walk through the park or around town once a day.
  • Puppies can be entertained and exercised with a game of fetch or tug-of-war in your backyard.
  • If you have a competitive edge, your Labradoodle might enjoy canine sporting activities, such as agility training and dock diving.

Remember that your Doodle’s parents were originally bred to work in the hunting field, so your Labradoodle will most likely have a fairly high prey drive. For that reason, you should ensure that your dog is obedient to your recall command before you allow him to play off-leash.

Golden Labradoodles are happiest in a home with an active person who spends lots of time outside.

How Much Grooming Do Golden Labradoodles Need?

Focus portrait of golden labradoodle

Your golden Labradoodle’s coat type will dictate the amount of brushing and grooming he needs.

Dogs with straight hair coats shed quite a lot, so you will need to give your pet a brush every couple of days to keep your house and clothes from becoming covered in fur.

Fleece and curly coats need brushing every day to remove mats and tangles that could otherwise cause skin irritation. 

If you have a curly-coated golden Labradoodle, you’ll need to have your dog professionally groomed and clipped every four to six weeks. Having your Doodle shaved can make maintaining the coat much less onerous and can help to keep your dog cool in summer, too.

Golden Labradoodle Temperament

A Labradoodle’s color has no bearing on his temperament.

Like color, the dog’s normal temperament is inherited from the puppy’s parent dogs to some extent. However, it’s how the puppy is raised, socialized, and trained that goes a long way to shaping his adult personality and behavior.

Generally, Labradoodles of all colors are affectionate dogs with the perfect temperament to get along fine with kids and other pets and make excellent family pets. These lively, active dogs do best in an outdoorsy home where they can join in plenty of activities with their human family.

Unfortunately, there are a couple of downsides to the outgoing, sociable golden Labradoodle’s personality:

  • Golden Labradoodles can be very clingy and bond closely with their owners. That can cause a condition called separation anxiety to develop if the Doodle is left home alone too much or for too long.
  • Labradoodles are smart dogs that need plenty of mental and physical exercise. If your dog is left without that outlet, behavioral problems, such as chewing and barking, can develop.

Those behavioral problems are easily preventable, and if you give your dog lots of daily exercise and ensure he’s well socialized and properly trained, you’ll have a fantastic family friend for life.

How Much Does A Golden Labradoodle Cost?

You can expect to pay from $1,500 and $5,000 for a well-bred golden Labradoodle puppy. The price you pay will depend on several factors:

  • A smaller dog is the best size for people living in apartments or small homes. Therefore, small golden Labradoodles are more popular than larger ones, so they are more expensive. 
  • Golden Labradoodles that are produced by reputable, licensed responsible breeders cost more than puppies bred on puppy farms and by backyard breeders. That’s because good breeders only use health-screened breeding stock to produce puppies free from common health problems. The pups are also usually well-socialized, vaccinated, and dewormed. 
  • Low-shedding, curly-coated golden Labradoodles are usually the most expensive.
  • Puppies with the most common coat colors are less pricey than those with more unusual colors. Golden is a common color. However, very dark red hues are very sought after, so they are more expensive than apricot shades.

Your location also influences Labradoodle prices. So, if you live in an upmarket, expensive area, you’ll pay more for a puppy than if you live somewhere rural, where your cost of living, property prices, etc., are lower.

Are Golden Labradoodles Hypoallergenic?

Labradoodle pup in the grass

Labradoodles, and Doodles generally, are often said to be hypoallergenic type dogs.

The term “hypoallergenic” means a substance less likely to cause a very severe reaction in allergy sufferers.

You first need to know that there’s no such thing as a dog that doesn’t cause pet allergies. Even hairless breeds can trigger an allergic reaction in a sufferer

How so?

So, it’s pet dander that’s responsible for causing allergies, not just the animal’s hair. Dander is made up of dead skin and dried saliva, which contains particular proteins that trigger allergies in sufferers.

As the pet moves around your home, the dander drops off and falls onto your floor coverings and upholstery. That dander eventually floats up into the air, where the allergy sufferer inhales it, triggering an allergic reaction.

Dog hair traps dander. Therefore, the more hair the dog or cat sheds, the more dander ends up in your home. Curly-coated dogs don’t shed much, which is why they are said to be hypoallergenic since they are less likely to cause a severe reaction in allergy sufferers.

So, a curly or fleece-coated golden Labradoodle will be equally as hypoallergenic as a black Labradoodle with the same coat type.

Final Thoughts

Did you enjoy our guide to golden Labradoodles? If you did, please take a moment to share the article.

Golden Labradoodles are essentially the same as the other colors that you find in this ever-popular dog breed. Like other family dog breeds, golden Labradoodles are friendly, loyal, highly intelligent dogs that are best suited to life in an active, outdoorsy household where they will get the mental and physical stimulation they need.

Do you have a golden Labradoodle? Tell us all about your furry friend in the comments box below.

Meet our writer

Alison Page was brought up with dogs and various other pets! For a few years, Alison worked as a Practice Manager in a small animal veterinary clinic. Alison is now a full-time writer, specializing in creating articles on the care and training of dogs, cats, and fish.

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