First-generation Goldendoodles are a hybrid cross of a Standard Poodle with a Golden Retriever. The appearance of these Goldendoodles, even within a single litter, can vary dramatically. They may be stocky, blocky and coated with straight or slightly wavy hair like a Golden Retriever, or they may be slender, refined and covered with tightly coiled curls like a Poodle. As the generations get farther and farther away from the initial outcross, the appearance of the Goldendoodle becomes more consistent. In other words, as Goldendoodles are bred to Goldendoodles (rather than Standard Poodles being bred to Golden Retrievers), the characteristics of the dogs become much more recognizable. Multi-generation Goldendoodles are medium-sized dogs with extremely soft, wavy-to-curly coats that typically hang in loose ringlets everywhere on their bodies. They have soulful, sometimes mischievous-looking eyes and endearing facial expressions. They are simply adorable to look at.
Size and Weight
The hybrid nature of the Goldendoodle's lineage creates offspring that have a wide range of heights and weights. Generally, their size is in the mid-range of the Standard Poodle and the Golden Retriever. Goldendoodles currently come in several varieties, none of which are universally recognized. The Standard Goldendoodle is the largest and most common variety, being over 21 inches in height and typically weighing over 50 pounds. The Medium variety ranges from 17 to 21 inches at the shoulder and normally weighs between 35 and 50 pounds. The Miniature Goldendoodle is between 14 and 17 inches in height and weighs from 25 to 35 pounds. The Petite variety should be less than 14 inches tall and weigh less than 25 pounds. Most first-generation Goldendoodles have a Standard Poodle as a parent and thus are Standard-sized.
Coat and Color
Poodles and Golden Retrievers are the main contributors to this “breed.” As a result, the Goldendoodle’s coat may be flat, wavy or tightly curled, depending upon the generation and genetic background of the particular dog. The same litter can produce puppies with widely different coat types, especially in a first-generation cross (a Poodle bred to a Golden Retriever). When left unclipped, the Goldendoodle’s coat can grow up to 8 inches in length. Goldendoodles can look like shaggy Retrievers or like Poodles with relaxed curls. Usually, they fall somewhere in between.
Goldendoodles come in a number of different colors, including cream, gold, apricot, red, chocolate, brown, black and grey. They also come in color combinations, called “parti colors,” which look patchy in appearance.
Goldendoodles are fairly easy keepers. Because Goldendoodles don’t shed profusely, they do need to be brushed regularly to remove dead and dying hair and prevent matting. A bath every few months can help keep their skin and coat in good condition, especially when they are groomed regularly between baths. It is a good idea to trim the hair that grows over their eyes. Toenails should be trimmed as in any other breed. Professional groomers are available to perform any of these tasks that owners are not comfortable doing or just don’t want to do.