Goldendoodles and Cockapoos are two of the oldest Doodle varieties, and they are both extremely popular pets. If you are looking for a great companion or family dog, you can’t go far wrong with either kind. However, there are some key distinctions between the two. Here we will compare all aspects of Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo to help you decide which one would fit more comfortably and happily into your home and your life.
If you’re in the market for a Doodle Dood but aren’t quite sure which one to choose, it pays to do a little research. Specifically, you’ll need to take a look at the differences between the dogs and what that means in terms of their perfect home and their individual needs.
All About Goldendoodles
This popular cross of Golden Retriever and Poodle has been around since the 1960s. Breeders were aiming to create a pup with the perfect family-dog temperament (courtesy of the Golden Retriever) and hypoallergenic hair (from the Poodle side of the equation).
Golden Retrievers were originally bred as gun dogs, retrieving whatever their owners managed to shoot down – everything from birds to game. Poodles were around to do much the same thing. With energetic, athletic, working dog parents on both sides, Goldendoodles tend to be quite boisterous pups, not to mention smart as a whip.
With their highly sociable nature and easy-to-train smarts, Goldendoodles are often employed as service or therapy animals. Their cousins, the Labradoodles, are likewise used. However, Goldies have the edge as they tend to adore just about everyone they meet.
All About Cockapoos
Cockapoos, a stunning combination of Cocker Spaniel and Poodle, actually predate Goldendoodles – but not by all that much. They are often considered the original ‘designer dogs’ and make excellent companion animals.
These gorgeous teddy bear pups are absolutely people-focused – and no mistake! While Cocker Spaniels were also first bred as gun dogs, they have long since been adopted as pets and have taken to their new role like a duck to water. Likewise, the Poodles used in this lovely mix – usually the Miniature and sometimes the Toy.
Cockapoos are every bit as intelligent as Goldendoodles but without their boundless energy and intense exercise needs. These dogs are as happy to cuddle up with their favorite human of choice for a movie marathon as they are to go on a fun family hike. Just as long as they get to be with the people they love, they are thoroughly happy hounds.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Size
Goldendoodles and Cockapoos are both bred with the three different sizes of Poodle: Toy, Miniature, and Standard. Although, Cocker Spaniel – Standard Poodle mixes are less common because of the size difference between the dogs.
Here are the varieties of each of these Doods:
|Teacup||N/A||Weight: 6 pounds or less|
Height: 10 inches or less
|Toy||Weight: 10-25 pounds|
Height: 15 inches or less
|Weight: 6-12 pounds|
Height: 10-11 inches
|Miniature||Weight: 25-35 pounds|
Height: 16-17 inches
|Weight: 13-25 pounds|
Height: 11-15 inches
|Medium||Weight: 35-50 pounds|
Height: 18-20 inches
|Standard / Maxi||Weight: 50-80 pounds|
Height: 21-26 inches
|Weight: 25 pounds or more|
Height: 16-22 inches
As you might expect, the Cockapoo is significantly smaller than the Goldendoodle across every size category. The largest they might ever expect to get is on the small end of Medium. Standard Goldendoodles, on the other hand, can easily reach a height and weight that would have them classified as a large breed.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Temperament
While every dog is as much an individual as every person, particular characteristics shine through in the more established breeds. This is definitely the case with the Golden Retriever and with the Cocker Spaniel, too. These pups often pass their qualities on to their Doodle offspring, which is why Doodles are so varied in looks and personality.
Cheeky charmers, Cockapoos are all but certain to leave you laughing each day at their cute, attention-grabbing antics. In comparison, Goldendoodles can be a little more full-on but are great for keeping the children entertained with their boundless energy and jolly spirit. It may seem that these hounds never tire, and you may have to get a little inventive with keeping them busy, but you’ll never regret adopting one.
The dogs have plenty of commonalities too. For instance, both Goldendoodles and Cockapoos are people-focused pups. They love their owners with all their heart and prefer being with their family more than anything else. This is something you will need to keep in mind when looking to adopt either of these darling dogs. Leaving them home alone for long periods is a big no-no. However, if absolutely necessary, Goldies will probably tolerate this a little better than the more codependent Cockers.
Neither hound has any guard dog heritage, so you won’t have to worry about barking or aggressive tendencies. Quite the reverse actually – both would likely greet any potential burglars with a frantically wagging tail and a big sloppy grin. Did we mention how much they love people? Cockapoos can be a little shyer, as is often the case with smaller dogs, though, so they will probably require a little more initial socialization.
Cockapoo vs Goldendoodle: Appearance
While both of these Doods are drop-dead gorgeous with their flowing coats, beautiful eyes, and friendly, doggy faces, there are also plenty of differences in their appearance – everything from size (as covered above) to coat color.
As Golden Retrievers are more color restricted than their Cocker Spaniel counterparts, these dogs tend to be available in far fewer shades. Mostly, Goldendoodles come in golden, apricot, cream, chocolate, and black.
Cockapoos, on the other hand, can be white, buff, cream, apricot, red, chocolate, or black. These dogs also might be parti, abstract, merle, or phantom.
Check out our articles on Doodle coat colors and patterns for more on what these terms mean and how they come about.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Grooming & Maintenance
While the so-called ‘hypoallergenic coat’ is the reason Doodles exist in the first place, it’s not always a given that this is the type of hair your pet will end up with. There are three specific kinds of Doodle coats based on the varieties found within the parent dogs. These are:
A thick, long straight coat
Doods can inherit this type of hair from their non-Poodle mom or pop. As such, it’s only commonly seen in first-generation dogs (ones with pedigree rather than Doodle parents) and is relatively rare overall.
This coat is most often single-layered, although it isn’t unheard of for it to be double. This means it has the potential to shed, especially with the changing of the seasons. It’s also typically quite long and requires regular grooming so as to avoid knots.
A dense, short, wiry coat
From the Poodle side, this coat is of the much-desired low shed variety. The texture is usually quite coarse, and the hair doesn’t grow quite as long as the straight coat.
However, thick curls mean that it needs a lot of care indeed! If your pup has this kind of coat, you will likely find yourself with a brush or comb in hand at least once a day. Anything less, and you could end up with a matted mess of a dog.
A wavy, shaggy mix of the two
Considered the standard Doodle coat, wavy hair sits somewhere between the two parent coat types. It is soft, quite long, and by far the lowest maintenance of the three.
You might expect some shed with wavy hair, but that will be very minimal. You will likely only need to brush your hound a couple of times a week to keep tangles at bay.
If you are considering a Doodle for their low shed coat, a Cockapoo (both parent breeds have single-layered hair coats) or a later generation Goldendoodle will be best. This reduces the possibility of them inheriting the super shed Golden Retriever double fur.
Cockapoo vs Goldendoodle: Health & Wellness
All Doodles, with their assortment of genes, tend to be healthier than most purebred dogs. The variety reduces the risk of genetic diseases from both parent pups. However, they are still susceptible to some of the canine conditions that can be passed along by just one of the parents.
From the Poodle, both Goldendoodles and Cockapoos could inherit hip dysplasia (more common in bigger dogs, particularly if they are overweight), Addison’s disease (hypoadrenocorticism – a severe hormone issue), ear problems, sensitive skin, and various food allergies and intolerances.
Goldendoodles are additionally prone to hypothyroidism, sub-aortic stenosis (SAS – a type of heart disease), eye disorders, elbow dysplasia, mast cell tumors, and seizures. This comes from their Golden Retriever side.
To avoid such issues, the best thing you can do is purchase your puppy from a reputable breeder. All their parent dogs will have been carefully screened for genetic conditions, making it much more likely that you will end up with a happy, healthy dog. To keep them this way, make sure you pick up the very best food to suit their specific dietary needs. This will vary depending on their size and life stage.
Plenty of exercise is also vital. The Goldendoodle, as the more high-energy of the two, has more demanding exercise needs. With these dogs, you will be looking at around 60 to 90 minutes of dedicated outdoor walking or playing time. The Cockapoo, while definitely less rambunctious, still requires up to an hour of exercise per day.
Cockapoo vs Goldendoodle: Lifespan
Healthy hybrid Doodles enjoy lovely long lifespans. Although generally, smaller dogs do tend to live longer than larger breeds. This gives the Cockapoo the edge here. You can expect your Cockapoo to live anywhere between 14 and 18 years compared with the Goldendoodle’s 10-to-15-year average.
Obviously, the type of Goldendoodle or Cockapoo will also play a role. Teacups, Toys, and Minis will be towards the upper end of the scale, with Mediums, Maxis, and Standards on the lower side – but you never know… Just aim to do best by your canine friend, and they will do well by it.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Training & Environment
Both Cockapoos and Goldendoodles inherit those Poodle smarts, alongside all of the intelligence of their working dog other breed parents. This makes them eminently trainable in the right hands. However, clever dogs are not always easy dogs, and they could happily run rings around a less confident owner.
Training Cockapoos is likely to be a touch easier than training Goldendoodles. While both pups are people pleasers, it might be a little harder to capture and hold the highly excitable Goldie’s attention. The trick is to keep things interesting, challenge them with different skills, and remain firm, fair, and consistent throughout. Check out our article Obedience Training for Dogs: Mastering the Basics for help with this.
In terms of home life, it probably comes as no surprise that Cockapoos are better suited to apartment living. With a Goldendoodle, whatever their size, it’s really best to have a nice big yard for them to run around in and burn off all that excess energy.
You also can’t overlook mental stimulation for either one of these clever canines. A bored Doodle is, more often than not, a destructive Doodle. Don’t worry though, you don’t need to personally keep them entertained every second of the day. Luckily, there are plenty of toys on the market that dogs can play with all by themselves.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Cost
When considering the price of getting a dog, you need to factor in the ongoing costs as well as the initial output. Dog ownership is certainly not cheap – but, for us, it’s worth every cent!
Goldendoodles are arguably the more popular of the two dogs. With this in mind, you can probably expect to pay a little more for one of these puppies. Somewhere between $2,000 and $4,000 compared with the Cockapoo $1,000 to $3,000.
After that, you will need to take a look at the price of essential accessories, such as bowls, beds, toys, etc. Then you will need to think about monthly food costs, treat expenses, vet visits, and trips to the groomers.
The latter of these can be very costly if you have a curly-coated hound. Especially if you are not prepared to give them a good brushing every single day. If, however, you would prefer to handle your own dog’s coat care rather than forking out each time, take a look at our handy grooming articles for some pro tips.
Overall, you can probably expect to pay a little more in ongoing costs with a Goldendoodle simply because, as a potentially larger dog, they will eat more than a Cockapoo. This difference probably won’t be all that significant, though, unless your Goldie is exceptionally athletic.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Family Friendliness
Doodles are well-known for their companion qualities, and Goldendoodles and Cockapoos are no exception here. They both make excellent family pets under the right circumstances. With low prey drives and less inclination towards herding than other breeds, there should be no real problems around children or other animals – even smaller ones.
Cockapoos, however, are perhaps a little more cautious around children, especially more boisterous ones. They would likely be happier in a home with younger, calmer kids. These dogs naturally tend towards being shyer and reserved, and they can have issues if not properly socialized. Introducing your Cockapoo to a range of situations, including new people, kids, and animals, will help build their confidence and make them all around less nervous pups.
The Goldie is quite the reverse. These guys will simply adore running around and playing games with bigger, more active children. However, all that excitable energy, coupled with their larger size (in the case of Medium and Standard versions), might be a little much for smaller kids to handle. The dogs also require careful socialization to ensure they don’t get overexcited with new situations. This could lead to unwanted behaviors like jumping up and even play biting.
Goldendoodle vs Cockapoo: Which is the Puppy for You?
At this point, both dogs are probably still looking quite appealing, and no wonder. They each combine some of the best breeds out there!
Opt for a Goldendoodle if you:
- like the idea of a (potentially) larger, bouncy canine about the place.
- have plenty of time for walks, games, and cuddles too.
- live in a house with a good-sized yard.
- have older children keen to get involved with pet care.
- don’t mind the possibility of a bit of hair about the place.
Choose a Cockapoo if you:
- prefer a more petite, slightly calmer pup.
- have a more time-restricted schedule or less mobility.
- live in an apartment or smaller house without a garden.
- have younger children or calmer older ones.
- need your pet to be very low shedding.
Fallen for Doodles? No surprise there! They truly are the cutest of all the dogs around – although we may be a little biased! Picking between these darling pups can be a chore and a half, but we are here to help. The first thing to do is look at the ways in which these Doodle types differ.
When it comes to Cockapoos and Goldendoodles, the most noticeable difference is their size. Cockapoos are smaller and more compact, and Goldendoodles are larger and leggier (although there are, of course, smaller versions). There are also distinct differences in their temperament and care needs that will make them better suited for one type of home over another.
We hope the information included here helps you to decide which of these remarkable canines might be the best one for you. Whichever one you choose we are absolutely sure you will never be sorry!
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