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Doodle Behavior Issues – Let’s Look at the Data

But First, Pin It!

In this article, we’re going to discuss common Doodle behavior issues. We’ll look at survey results from hundreds of Doodle owners to see what behavior issues Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles are prone to. We’ll also touch on training and when to seek professional help.

Whether we’re talking about Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, Aussiedoodles, or Whosawhatsitdoodles (lol), there’s no arguing that Poodle-mixes are some of the smartest dogs out there.

When neuropsychologist Stanley Coren, PhD assessed most intelligent dog breeds in his book The Intelligence of Dogs, Poodles scored #2 out of 110 breeds. (More than 200 professional dog obedience judges scored the breeds based on working and obedience tests, and the breeds that were deemed most intelligent absorbed commands in less than five repetitions, and obeyed them 95% of the time or better.)

Unfortunately, if a Doodle’s smarts are not properly nourished and tamed, an otherwise angelic pup can quickly turn into a little hellion on four legs.


As of September 1, 2020, we have received 481 total responses to the survey.

Each graph below is interactive so you can hover over the sections (on a computer) or tap on the sections (on a mobile device) for more info. On mobile devices, the graphs might look cut off, but you can use your finger to tap and drag to scroll and see the full graph.

The graphs are also updated in real-time as people submit their responses to the survey.

All ratings are based on a scale from Poor to Excellent.


Aussiedoodle, Labradoodle, Bernedoodle, and Golden Doodle Behavior Issues

Doodles have some temperamental and behavior issues that highly depend on how well-trained they are as individuals. We’re not talking about things like ease of crate training or potty training, but rather negative behavior issues that tend to persist.

Let’s look at what those are.

Related: How to Crate Train a Puppy and Puppy Crate Training Schedule
How to Potty Train a Puppy: Ultimate Guide With Puppy Potty Training Schedule

Potential for Mouthiness

Below is a graph evaluating the Goldendoodle’s, Labradoodle’s, Bernedoodle’s, and Aussiedoodle’s potential for mouthiness.

Based on survey feedback, Goldendoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles tend to be quite mouthy.

Labradoodles were rated mostly at Very Good. This means that they are less likely to be mouthy, but the results are still mixed.

You can nip this habit in the bud early on with proper training. Also, to minimize damage, be sure to provide puppy with plenty of chew toys. Otherwise, you could find that your favorite shoes, throw pillows, furniture, or even base boards have fallen victim to a mouthy puppy.

How to Stop a Puppy From Biting

Prey Drive

Prey drive describes a dog’s innate desire to hunt and chase – and sometimes kill – things such as cats, squirrels, mice, and sometimes even cars.

Below is a graph evaluating Goldendoodle, Labradoodle, Bernedoodle, and Aussiedoodle Prey Drive.

You can see that each Doodle breed is mostly rated in the Satisfactory range, though Aussiedoodles rate lower probably due to their herding instincts. This means they their prey drive urges them (uncontrollably, sometimes) to hunt and chase other animals. Acting on prey drive is one of the most common Doodle behavior issues.

Tendency to Bark or Howl

Below is a graph evaluating the Goldendoodle’s, Labradoodle’s, Bernedoodle’s, and Aussiedoodle’s tendencies to bark or howl.

Each Doodle breed is mostly rated in the Satisfactory range, which means they tend to bark more than average. Barking incessantly is one of the most common Doodle behavior issues.

Intensity/Hyperness

Below is a graph evaluating the Goldendoodle’s, Labradoodle’s, Bernedoodle’s, and Aussiedoodle’s intensity. “Intensity” describes the tendency to pull hard on the leash, jump on people, and other similar behaviors.

Goldendoodles and Labradoodles rated mostly Very Good. This means that they are more laidback.

However, Bernedoodles and Aussiedoodles rated mostly Satisfactory. This means that they are noticeably intense and hyper.

Destructiveness

Below is a graph evaluating the Goldendoodle’s, Labradoodle’s, Bernedoodle’s, and Aussiedoodle’s destructiveness. Destruction of toys, obsessive chewing, and digging are examples of behaviors included in this graph.

Goldendoodles seem to have the most consistent ratings in terms of destructiveness, rating mostly at Very Good. This means that they are less destructive than the others.

However, Labradoodles and Bernedoodles both have mixed results. This could indicate how well the individual dog was trained, or perhaps it’s dependent on the dog’s personality.

Aussiedoodles seem to be rated mostly on the Poor end.

Counter Surfing, Digging Through Trash, etc.

Below is a graph evaluating the Goldendoodle’s, Labradoodle’s, Bernedoodle’s, and Aussiedoodle’s miscellaneous behavioral issues. These would include counter surfing (finding and stealing food off the counter), digging through the trash, etc.

Goldendoodles seem to have the most consistent ratings in terms of these behaviors, rating mostly at Very Good or Excellent. This means that they are not prone to getting into this type of mischief.

Labradoodles, surprisingly, rate mostly at Fair. This means that they are quite prone to misbehaving in these ways.

Bernedoodles and Aussiedoodles got mixed results. This could indicate how well the individual dog was trained, or perhaps it’s dependent on the dog’s personality.

Food Motivation

Below is a graph evaluating how food motivated Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles are. This includes behaviors such as begging, “inhaling”, and stealing food.

Each Doodle breed’s results were quite mixed, with the exception of Aussiedoodles, who were rated mostly at Satisfactory. This means that their motivation toward food depends on the individual dog.

Food Aggression

Below is a graph evaluating if Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles are aggressive with their food. This could include behaviors like growling and biting when someone approaches them at mealtimes, when another dog or animal goes near their food bowl, or if someone tries to take their bone or food bowl away.

Ah, finally a graph showing very consistent and positive results! Food aggression is luckily not one of the common Doodle behavior issues. All Doodle breeds were overwhelmingly reported as Excellent. This means that they are not at all prone to food aggression. (With exceptions, of course).

Ingestion of Non-Food Items

Below is a graph evaluating how likely Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles are to ingest things that aren’t food. Lots of Doodle owners have expressed their concerns about their pups swallowing socks, especially, so let’s see what the survey said.

Goldendoodles and Aussiedoodles were rated mostly Excellent (Aussiedoodles, especially). This means they are much less likely to eat and swallow non-food items.

Labradoodles and Bernedoodles, on the other hand, were rated mostly at Satisfactory. This means they are likely to eat and swallow non-food items.

If your Doodle is a happy eater of socks or other things, be sure to enroll in a pet insurance plan in case the item causes bowel obstruction (which oftentimes requires surgery to remove).

Best Pet Insurance for Doodles

Aggressiveness

Below is a graph evaluating how aggressive Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles are toward other people and animals.

Each Doodle breed was overwhelmingly rated Excellent, which means that they are not at all aggressive toward strangers. (Many Doodle owners joke that they have the worst guard dog on the planet – a dog that would happily greet an intruder rather than fight him off!)

Separation Anxiety Level

Below is a graph evaluating whether Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles suffer from separation anxiety when the family leaves them alone at home, and to what degree.

These are all some pretty mixed results, though Goldendoodles err on the side of Satisfactory to Excellent, and Aussiedoodles were rated mostly Satisfactory and Very Good. This means that they are less likely to suffer from separation anxiety when the family leaves them at home alone.

Anxiety Toward Groomers and Vets

Below is a graph evaluating whether Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles suffer from anxiety during trips to the groomer or vet.

Goldendoodles and Bernedoodles were rated mostly Excellent, meaning they don’t get anxious when getting groomed or health checked.

Labradoodles got mixed results, and Aussiedoodles rated mostly Satisfactory, meaning they experience some level of anxiety.

Anxiety Toward Loud Noises

Below is a graph evaluating whether Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Bernedoodles, and Aussiedoodles get anxiety from loud noises such as fireworks, thunder, and beeping smoke detectors.

Goldendoodles and Bernedoodles rated mostly Very Good or Excellent, which means they tend not to exhibit anxious behaviors caused by loud noises.

Labradoodles and Aussiedoodles tend to have a harder time with loud noises, rating mostly at Satisfactory. Anxious behaviors might include cowering, hiding in a quieter room, and pacing and panting.

Correcting Behavioral Issues

Many negative behaviors and destructiveness are caused by a Doodle that is continually lonely and bored. These can oftentimes be quelled by making sure your pup gets enough attention, exercise, and opportunities to socialize.

However, if your pup continues to display behavior issues such as aggression, food aggression, excessive barking, destructive chewing, mounting, or separation anxiety, it is likely that he will need special attention to address them. The best way to deal with Doodle behavior issues is to hire a trainer, or a behaviorist to come to your home for a one-on-one consult.

Get Professional Training

baxter and bella

At your wit’s end with your Doodle behavior issues? We recommend BAXTER & BELLA, The Online Puppy School. The program includes more than 65 step-by-step lessons, over 100 how-to videos, unlimited LIVE! one-on-one professional help, canine coaching classes, training games, field trips and activities, printable charts and checklists, and so much more.

It’s like having a professional dog trainer in your home!

To learn more about BAXTER & BELLA, The Online Puppy School, click here and use code DOODLEDOODS at checkout for 25% off lifetime access!

What will YOU learn with BAXTER & BELLA?

  • How to set up your home for canine companionship
  • How to effectively pet parent as part of everyday living
  • How to house train your puppy for lifelong success
  • How to teach your dog basic manners and obedience
  • How to socialize your puppy for healthiness and happiness
  • How to successfully communicate with your dog
  • How to teach your canine companion to listen and respond
  • How to teach your puppy to be calm and patient
  • How to prevent barking, biting, chewing, and jumping
  • How to do all this and so much MORE!

What will your PUP learn with BAXTER & BELLA?

  • Marker Training (YES & No)
  • Attention and Focus on YOU!
  • Impulse Control and Patience
  • Sit and Down
  • Come and Stay
  • Wait and Leave it
  • Drop
  • Let’s Go (loose-leash walking)
  • Kennel and Place
  • and so much MORE!

To learn more about BAXTER & BELLA, The Online Puppy School, click here and use code DOODLEDOODS at checkout for 25% off lifetime access!


Does your Doodle exhibit any of these behavior issues? Do you agree with the survey results? Join in the discussion by leaving your comment below!

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