The Miniature Labradoodle or Mini Labradoodle is an incredibly popular designer dog breed! These pups are loyal, intelligent, and can be low-shedding.
So, would a Mini Labradoodle make the ideal pet for your family? Do Miniature Labradoodles have a high energy level? And is a Micro Labradoodle the same as a Mini Labradoodle?
Read our ultimate Miniature Labradoodle breed guide for everything you need to know about these beautiful dogs.
Mini Labradoodle History
The original Labradoodle crossbreed was created by an Australian breeder called Wally Conran in the 1980s. The idea was to create a non-shedding dog that could work as a service animal, specifically helping visually impaired people.
The Labrador retriever already has a proven track record of working alongside people in the hunting field and as a service dog. However, the Lab’s thick double coat sheds heavily all year round. In contrast, the Poodle has a single coat that sheds very lightly.
A purebred Standard Poodle and purebred Labrador retriever were crossbred to produce the first Labradoodle. The Doodle was an instant success in the role it was bred for and rapidly gained popularity as a family pet, too.
Of course, a regular Labradoodle is a pretty large dog. Not everyone has a spacious home to accommodate a dog of that size. These dogs need lots of daily exercise and grooming, and then there’s the cost of feeding a dog that could grow to an average weight of 75 pounds or even more.
So, breeders recognized that there was a demand for smaller Labradoodles. In response, smaller, Miniature or Toy Poodles were used in the breeding program, and the Mini Labradoodle was created.
What Size Are Miniature Labradoodles?
A full-grown Mini Labradoodle stands around 14 to 16 inches tall, although a puppy can reach closer to 24 inches tall if it takes more of the Labrador parent’s genes.
Mini Labradoodles can achieve an adult weight of 15 to 25 pounds. However, as these dogs are hybrids, it’s possible that they can come out smaller at 10 to 15 pounds, again, depending on the individual puppy’s genetic makeup. Female weight tends to be less than that of male dogs.
The size of a full-grown Mini Labradoodle puppy is easier to predict in second or third-generation mixes, as the parent dogs will be closer in size.
Mini Labradoodle Temperament
As the Mini Labradoodle is a designer dog breed, it’s pretty much impossible to predict whether the puppy’s temperament will be closer to that of the mother or father dog. The only thing you can do is take a look at the parents’ personalities and make an educated guess.
In the case of the ever-charming Mini Labradoodle, both parent breeds are known to be friendly, outgoing, intelligent, people-oriented dogs that enjoy an active lifestyle. These dogs typically form a close bond with their human family and generally get along well with kids and other pets.
That said, Mini and Toy Labradoodles can be a little aloof or shy around strangers and other dogs. However, provided that your puppy is properly trained and socialized from day one, he should grow up to be a well-adjusted, outgoing dog that’s a pleasure to be around.
As soon as your puppy is fully vaccinated, he can go along to puppy kindergarten and obedience classes. That’s a fun way to train your puppy and accustom him to other people and dogs at the same time.
Mini Labradoodle Coat Types
Mini Labradoodles can have one of three coat types:
The wool coat is similar to that of a Poodle, being very curly and light shedding.
That’s perfect for allergy sufferers, although this coat type does require daily brushing to prevent mats. Most owners of Doodles with this coat type opt to have their dogs clipped once a month or so to keep the coat manageable and looking smart.
The fleece coat has a wavy or spiral appearance and is soft in texture, making the fur easier to brush and manage than that of the wool coat. Fleece-coated Mini Labradoodles also make excellent dogs for people with mild pet allergies.
The hair coat is closer to that of the Labrador retriever. The coat is shaggy and kinky rather than wavy. Generally, the hair coat is seen in earlier generation Doodle breeds.
The Mini Australian Labradoodle has a silkier coat than that of the regular Miniature Labradoodle. That’s because the breed is a mixture of a Labrador retriever, English Cocker Spaniel, Irish Water Spaniel, and American Cocker Spaniel.
Thanks to their Poodle heritage, the Mini Labradoodle can come in solid or multi-colors.
If the puppy takes mostly after its Labrador retriever parent, you could finish up with a black, chocolate, or yellow Mini Labradoodle.
However, if the Poodle genes are the strongest, the following colors are also possible:
You can also find Mini Labradoodles in parti-color or even multi-colors!
Is A Mini Labradoodle Hypoallergenic?
Doodle breeds, in general, are often labeled as hypoallergenic, as some of them are low-shedding. But are Mini Labradoodles truly hypoallergenic?
The main allergens triggered by pets are found in the animal’s saliva and are transferred onto the dog’s coat through self-grooming. When the dog moves around your home or rides in your car, the saliva-covered hairs are shed, triggering allergies.
Pet dander is also responsible for pet allergies. Dander consists of dead skin cells, again soaked with saliva, that drift down onto your floor coverings when the dog walks around inside your home. When someone walks across the room, the dander is disturbed and floats up into the air, where the allergy sufferer inhales it.
So, even a curly-coated, low-shedding Miniature Labradoodle can trigger allergies to some extent. However, the less the dog sheds, the more reduced the risk. That’s why Doodles with curly coats are more sought-after than those with straighter hair coats.
Do Mini Labradoodles Shed?
All Mini Labradoodles will shed to some degree, depending on which parent they most take after.
A Doodle with a hair coat will shed plenty like its Labrador retriever parent. However, fleece and wool coats tend to trap loose hair before it falls off the dog and gets into your home. So, in theory, a low-shedding dog will be less likely to trigger a severe allergy.
Grooming and Coat Care
If you have a hair-coated Mini Labradoodle, you’ll need to brush your dog once a week or so to remove any loose hair.
Poodle-type coats require more brushing and maintenance. Basically, the curlier the dog’s coat, the more frequent brushing it will need. For example, a wool coat needs brushing every day to keep mats and tangles at bay.
The longer the Mini Labradoodle’s coat is, the more prone it will be to matting. That’s why most Doodle owners with curly-coated dogs take their pets to the professional groomer’s salon once every four to six weeks.
Mini Labradoodles FAQs
Are Mini Labradoodles Very Active Dogs?
The Standard Poodle and Labrador retriever are both working dogs that were bred to work alongside hunters, retrieving shot birds from marshes and water. So, Labradoodles are typically active dogs with lots of energy.
Mini Labradoodles are no exception, and they need plenty of exercise despite their smaller size. Ideally, you need to have some outside space where your Doodle can play. You also need to set aside plenty of time to walk your Mini Labradoodle every day, as well as spend an hour or so playing with your dog in your backyard.
These dogs are excellent swimmers, and a trip to the lake or to the beach is an excellent way to give your dog the exercise he needs and burn off a bit of energy.
The Labradoodle is an intelligent breed that will become frustrated and destructive if not mentally and physically stimulated. So, a selection of interactive toys is a must for Mini Labradoodles, especially if you’re out at work during the day and your dog is confined to a crate while you’re not around.
How Much Exercise Does My Dog Need?
So, how much exercise does your Mini Labradoodle need each day?
Well, you should give your dog exercise suitable for his age, health, and temperament.
- Mini Labradoodle puppies are balls of energy and typically enjoy lots of short bouts of active exercise throughout the day, interspersed with naps.
- Adult Doodles can have lots of energy to burn and will happily spend a day hiking or accompanying your family on trips to the Great Outdoors.
- Senior Mini Labradoodles tend to slow down as they age, so they don’t need as much exercise as they did.
It’s really a matter of adjusting your dog’s exercise schedule to suit your individual furry friend’s requirements.
Are Mini Labradoodle’s Healthy Dogs?
Labradoodles are generally healthy dogs at heart, thanks to something called “hybrid vigor.”
Hybrid vigor is a health advantage that crossbreed dogs have over purebreds. That’s because breeding two purebred dogs can cause the same congenital health problems and physical deformities to occur in every generation.
However, by crossing two different dog breeds, the puppies won’t be as likely to acquire the same common breed health problems from their parents. So, crossbreed dogs are often healthier and stronger than purebred dogs.
Health Conditions That Can Affect Mini Labradoodles
Labrador retrievers and Poodles can be prone to several health problems that are common to both breeds, and that means those conditions can sometimes be passed onto their progeny.
That said, a responsible breeder will always have their breeding stock health-screened to try to eliminate as much risk as possible that their puppies will inherit health issues from their parents.
Some common health conditions that are often carried by both Poodles and Labradors include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Progressive Renal Atrophy (PRA)
- Bloat (Gastric Dilatation)
- Addison’s Disease
- Centronuclear Myopathy
- Chronic Active Hepatitis
- Patellar luxation
- Cushing’s Disease
- Sebaceous Adenitis
It’s not possible to have health testing carried out for all those conditions. However, an annual health check and blood tests can help to highlight any potential problems.
Early diagnosis of a serious condition gives your vet a much better chance of successfully treating a problem, so ask your vet about that when you take your dog for his annual booster vaccinations and checkup.
Another practical way to prevent health problems from affecting your Labradoodle is to feed your dog a high-quality, balanced diet in the correct amounts and ensure your pet gets plenty of daily exercise.
How Long Do Mini Labradoodles Live?
As is the case with many crossbreed dogs, thanks to hybrid vigor, Mini Labradoodles tend to have a long lifespan. Also, small dogs generally live longer than larger ones. Based on the parent breeds’ average lifespan, that means you could get to enjoy between 10 and 18 years of fun with your canine companion.
Interestingly, research shows that chocolate Labradors have a 10% shorter lifespan than black or yellow Labs. Chocolate Labs are also more prone to certain health conditions, including ear and skin infections, than black or yellow Labs.
Why is that?
So, one theory for those strange statistics is that the recessive gene responsible for determining the dogs’ gorgeous chocolate color is also responsible for a reduced lifespan and increased infections.
Therefore, it’s possible that a Mini chocolate Labradoodle might have a shorter lifespan than Mini Doodles of other colors.
Where To Buy Mini Labradoodle Puppies
Since Miniature Labradoodles are one of the most popular designer dog breeds out there, it’s relatively easy to find a reputable breeder.
However, ensure that you always choose a breeder that insists on fully health screening both parents for potential health conditions that could be passed on to the puppies. You also want to choose a breeder who keeps their breeding dogs as loved family members rather than solely for profit.
Avoid Puppy Mills!
Never buy a cheap puppy from a backyard breeder, online ad, or a puppy mill!
Dogs from puppy mills and the like tend to have health issues. You won’t know whether your puppy or its parents have been health checked, and sometimes a pup’s temperament can be suspect.
Responsible breeders care about the welfare and wellbeing of all the puppies they produce. You should expect the breeder to ask you plenty of questions to make sure you’re a good match for both you and the puppy.
Sadly, designer breeds, including Doodles, are big business, and the trade in them has mushroomed during the lockdown. Not every breeder wants the best for their dogs, so be sure to do plenty of research to find an experienced, reputable breeder.
How Much Does A Mini Labradoodle Cost?
When it comes to the Miniature Labradoodle price, that can vary widely. You can expect to pay anywhere between $1,500 to $5,000, depending on various factors, including:
- Breeder reputation
- Your location
- The puppy’s color
- The puppy’s predicted coat type
- Current supply and demand situation
Generally, curly-coated puppies of unusual colors or patterns that are produced by reputable breeders command the highest prices. Most people want Doodles with curly coats since those dogs are the lightest shedders and have that super-cute teddy bear look that everyone wants.
Puppies from pet stores, puppy mills, and backyard breeding operations are typically much cheaper. However, those pups are more likely to have health conditions that will cost you a fortune in veterinary bills in the future.
Miniature Labradoodle Rescues
Suppose the cost of buying a high-quality Mini Labradoodle puppy from a good breeder is prohibitive. In that case, you might want to consider offering a forever home to a puppy from a rescue center.
In a rescue center, you might find a retired breeding dog or show animal available for adoption. Adopting an unwanted dog is very rewarding but can be challenging, too. Some dogs come from puppy mills and have never enjoyed a normal life, having been used as breeding machines.
So, if you take on a Mini Labradoodle from a rescue, you must be prepared to spend months rehabilitating the dog. That process could include potty training, attending obedience classes, and socializing with your new furry friend.
Do Miniature Labradoodles Make Good Family Pets?
Toy Labradoodles are typically friendly, sociable dogs that get along fine with other pets and kids, making the breed a popular choice for families with children.
That said, you might find this breed more suitable for families with children that are older. Energetic, boisterous Doodle breed dogs can often be a bit too much of a handful for toddlers and very young children who could easily be knocked over.
Did you enjoy our guide to the Mini Labradoodle breed? If you loved the article, please take a moment to share it!
Mini Labradoodles are sociable, loyal, energetic dogs that can make excellent family pets.
Of course, there’s no guarantee as to what temperament, health, coat type, shedding, or even color of a Mini Labradoodle puppy you’ll finish up with. However, if you want a fun, loving, trainable dog that looks totally cute too, a Mini Labradoodle could be just what you’re looking for.
Do you have a Mini Labradoodle? Tell us about your pet in the comments box below.