Updated: May 11, 2019 – previously we showed the survey results from over 50 goldendoodle owners. That has now increased to 90+.

This designer dog has become so popular in recent years that you’ve begun seeing them everywhere. And if you’re like the other 99% of us who have become utterly obsessed with these living, breathing teddy bears, you’ve come to the right place to find out more about these dogs that we have come to call goldendoodles.

These highly sought-after dogs have become somewhat of a commodity, and for good reason. Not only are goldendoodles super cute and cuddly, they are also known to be very family-friendly, highly energetic, super intelligent, and (mostly) non-shedding. There are also so many different varieties, sizes, and colors of goldendoodles that you can rest-assured knowing that yours will truly be one-of-a-kind.

Sounds like a great dog, right? Personally, I can attest that they are 🙂 But let’s go over the characteristics of goldendoodles in further detail below.

What Goldendoodles are REALLY Like

Goldendoodle Stats

Dog Breed Group: Hybrid Dogs (Golden Retriever mixed with Poodle [varying degrees*])
Height: 13 inches to 26 inches tall at the shoulder**
Weight: 15 to 90 pounds**
Life Span: 10 to 15 years

*Go here to understand the differences in goldendoodle generations (F1, F1B, F2, etc.)
**There are a few different sizes of goldendoodles: miniature, medium, and standard. Go here to see the height/weight details of each.

Characteristics of Goldendoodles

It seems that a lot of websites have arbitrarily rated goldendoodles in each characteristics category.

We at Doodle Doods, however, wanted a more accurate overview of their characteristics based on feedback from actual goldendoodle owners. This is why we are conducting an ongoing survey to gather this feedback.

As of February 13, 2018, we have received 89 total responses to the survey. The ratings you see below pertain only to goldendoodles (51 responses).

As of May 11, 2019, we have received 131 total responses to the survey. The ratings you see below pertain only to goldendoodles (90 responses).

The survey asked for observations of 27 characteristics across these 5 categories:

  1. Health and Grooming
  2. All Around Friendliness
  3. Trainability
  4. Exercise Needs
  5. Adaptability

Characteristics Summary

Based on feedback from all these goldendoodle owners, we can safely say the following about them:

  • They typically don’t shed or trigger allergies.
  • They don’t drool.
  • They require a lot of grooming.
  • They are generally healthy and have little potential for weight gain.
  • They are excellent at being affectionate with their families; and are very kid-, dog-, and stranger-friendly.
  • They are not as good with cats (probably due to their prey drive).
  • They are very easy to train and are super intelligent.
  • They have a some potential to be mouthy (nip, chew, and play-bite).
  • They have varying degrees of prey drive (desire to chase and sometimes kill other animals such as cats, squirrels, and sometimes even cars).
  • They have varying tendencies to bark or howl.
  • They are not prone to wander off.
  • They have a lot of energy, which can cause them to be very playful but also to lead an intense lifestyle (pulling on the leash, inhaling food, etc.).
  • They require a lot of exercise to balance out their high energy.
  • They can adapt fine to apartment living, but they probably aren’t best suited for it.
  • They may or may not be the best choice for novice dog owners.
  • They are great at handling a noisy, chaotic household; a louder or more assertive owner; or an inconsistent or variable routine.
  • They can handle being alone but they probably don’t like it.
  • They tolerate cold weather very well, but they don’t like hot weather as much.

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.


Health and Grooming

Amount Of Shedding

One of the reasons why goldendoodles are so popular is because they are said to be non-shedding. The truth is that no dog is 100% non-shedding, but goldendoodles are among the top breeds that have minimal shedding. Of course, shedding levels vary based on the generation of goldendoodle (F1, F1B, F2, etc.).

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Amount of Shedding from Poor (a lot of shedding) to Excellent (no shedding), and most people reported Excellent.

Hypoallergenic Level

Typically, people associate the shedding of the fur with triggering allergies. In actuality, pet/animal allergies are triggered by dander, which is just a fancy term for dead skin particles. BUT, since goldendoodles don’t shed that much, in theory this means that their dander isn’t able to float into the air as easily. As such, goldendoodles are almost totally hypoallergenic, making them a great choice for people/families with allergies.

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Hypoallergenic Level from Poor (triggers allergies) to Excellent (doesn’t trigger allergies), and most people reported Excellent.

Drooling Potential

This characteristic is rated in the middle because it truly depends on the dog. From personal experience, my goldendoodle Chloe rarely drools. (It only happens on occasion when we visit a dog park and she’s so excited meeting other dogs that she forgets to swallow her saliva!)

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Drooling Potential from Poor (a lot of drooling) to Excellent (no drooling), and most people reported Excellent.

Ease of Grooming

goldendoodle grooming

Since goldendoodles don’t shed much, their fur can grow quite long…and with long hair comes great responsibility. Brushing is required multiple times per week to prevent mats; every so often you might need to do some DIY maintenance grooming; and a full-body groom is typically done every few months. Consider whether you have the time and patience for a dog that needs a lot of grooming, or the money to pay someone else to do it.

Read more:

Tools you need to groom a goldendoodle

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Ease of Grooming from Poor to Excellent, and we got mixed results.

When asked what people disliked most about their doodles, among the top answers related to the high cost and frequency of grooming.

“I love that he doesn’t shed. But my goodness, cost upkeep is A LOT more than I bargained for and we keep him short.”

“The grooming is a lot to keep up on. We do it ourselves to save some $, but it is an all day event for baths/ haircuts!”

“High cost of grooming.”

“Grooming requirements.”

General Health

Some doodle breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia. Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s General Health from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

However, one person commented and said “13 years ago I didn’t know about puppy mills. [My doodle] developed hip dysplasia and degenerative muscles. At 11 he developed spleen cancer although with vet care we kept him alive over a year. Unfortunately he passed of stomach bloat.” (Check out this page for more information on choosing a high-quality breeder.)

Potential For Weight Gain

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Potential for Weight Gain from Poor (high potential for weight gain) to Excellent (low potential for weight gain), and we got mixed results, though most people erred on the side of low potential for weight gain.

Still, you will want to limit treats, make sure pup gets enough exercise, and measure out his meals as prescribed by the vet or based on his kibble’s packaging.


All Around Friendliness

Affection with Family


Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Affection with Family from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

Kid Friendliness

 

Kiss Collins! #goldendoodle #goldendoodlesofinstagram #sweetboys #familydog

A post shared by Beth Burris (@simonandelizabeth) on


Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Kid-Friendliness from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent. This indicates that goldendoodles are typically gentle with children, yet sturdy enough to handle less-than-gentle petting/hugging, and that they can also well-tolerate the high energies of running, screaming children.

Dog Friendliness

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Dog-Friendliness from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

Cat Friendliness

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Cat-Friendliness from Poor to Excellent. Most people reported Satisfactory, and still a lot of people reported Excellent, so on average it seems that goldendoodles do very well with cats (not my Chloe, though…HA!).

Friendliness Toward Strangers

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Friendliness Toward Strangers from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.


Trainability

Ease of Training

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Ease of Training from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

Intelligence

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Intelligence from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

Potential For Mouthiness

Mouthiness is a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite.

Cream goldendoodle puppy

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Potential For Mouthiness from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported somewhere between Satisfactory and Excellent.

Prey Drive

Prey drive describes a goldendoodle’s inborn desire to chase and sometimes kill other animals such as cats, squirrels, and sometimes even cars.

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Prey Drive from Poor to Excellent, and we got mixed results, so it depends on how well-trained the dog is to resist the urge to chase. I can tell you that my own goldendoodle Chloe has quite poor prey drive. She doesn’t care for cars or birds, but when she sees a cat or a squirrel…she’s outta here. In fact, she once jumped out of the car window because she saw a squirrel in the tree we were stopped next to! Needless to say, we don’t give her very much window anymore…

Tendency To Bark Or Howl

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Tendency to Bark or Howl from Poor to Excellent, and we got mixed results.

Wanderlust Potential


Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Wanderlust Potential from Poor (prone to wander off) to Excellent (doesn’t wander), and most people reported Excellent.


Exercise Needs

Energy Level


Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Energy Level from Poor (low energy) to Excellent (high energy), and most people reported between Satisfactory and Excellent (high energy).

Intensity

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Intensity (hyperness) from Poor (very intense leash pulling, inhales food, etc.) to Excellent (laid-back attitude about everything), and we got mixed results.

Chloe jumping into a pond…because she’s a goldendoodle

Exercise Needs

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Exercise Needs from Poor (little to no exercise needed) to Excellent (a lot of exercise needed), and most people reported between Satisfactory and Excellent (a lot of exercise needed).

Potential For Playfulness

You know what they say: age is relative, and that phrase couldn’t be more true when it comes to goldendoodles. Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Potential for Playfulness from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

No joke, I’ve often been asked how old Chloe is and 100% of the time people are surprised to find out that she’s an older dog (currently 9 years old)!


Adaptability

Adaptability to Apartment Living

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Adaptability to Apartment Living from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Satisfactory.

Chloe bored to death in our old apartment

Good for Novice Owners?

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s compatibility with novice owners from Poor to Excellent, and we got mixed results.

Sensitivity Level

Sensitivity Level describes whether the dog can better handle a noisy, chaotic household, a louder or more assertive owner, or an inconsistent or variable routine.

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Sensitivity Level from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported between Satisfactory and Excellent.

Tolerability of Being Alone

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Tolerability of Being Alone from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Satisfactory.

Tolerability of Cold Weather


Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Tolerability of Cold Weather from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Excellent.

Tolerability of Hot Weather

Survey participants evaluated their goldendoodle’s Tolerability of Hot Weather from Poor to Excellent, and most people reported Satisfactory.


What do you love most about your goldendoodle?

To this question we received a lot of great answers! Here are some of our favorite.

Everything, sweetest dog I have ever owned!!”

Extremely affectionate and eager to please.”

GREAT Personality, intelligence, lovingness, curiosity, low shedding, happy and adorable.”

He is just a total member of the family.”

He knew when anyone in the house needed comfort and my children and grandchildren grew up with him. He was my constant companion and never did wrong. Silly and goofy and always had that smile but had deep soulful eyes.”

He shadows me everywhere and is affectionate in his own way, he’s my best friend.”

His personality!! His only wish is to be included in everything.”

Loyalty and acts like a human.”

She can be super playful or a couch potato. She loves to cuddle.”

She loves me unconditionally. She loves playing with me and often brings toys for us to play with. She’s always happy!”

She understands my emotions and feelings.”

What do you dislike most about your goldendoodle?

Goldendoodles may seem like the perfect dog, but as they say, nobody is perfect. Here are some answers to this question that “shed” a little more light on some of the downsides of goldendoodles:

Shedding.”

Hair mats.”

Absolutely nothing!”

Barking.”

“Jumping on company.”

She still has some separation anxiety.”

He’s a runner. Inside the house, or fenced yard he recalls well. Outside, off leash he’s gone until he decides to return.”

She gets bored easily and is a little destructive.”

He talks (barks) to me as soon as I get on the phone or ignore him.”

Energy can be a lot at times.”

Sensitive stomach.”

The grooming is a lot to keep up on. We do it ourselves to save some $, but it is an all day event for baths/ haircuts!”

She barks at people, freaks out at other dogs, chases cats and squirrels like its her life mission to catch them.”

High maintenance in most areas.. attention, activity, health, coat care.”


Conclusion

It was really interesting to see this feedback from over 85 other goldendoodle owners and compare the results to my observations of my own goldendoodle Chloe. It seems like there are a lot of things that most goldendoodles have in common (they don’t drool, are very friendly with people and kids, require lots of grooming, super smart and trainable, etc.).

If you have a goldendoodle, how much do you agree with these survey results?

(Goldendoodle owners: take this survey now to shed even more light on the characteristics of these dogs!)

If you don’t have a goldendoodle but have been wanting one, which of these survey results surprises you most?

Leave us a comment in the comments section below with your thoughts!

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