Poodle vs Goldendoodle: Which Breed is Right for You?


Choosing a dog breed can be a daunting task.  Especially with all of the new crossbreeds.  Poodles typically are purebred, and Goldendoodles, a hybrid mix, are both similar and different.  Both breeds have some amazing traits, but there are always a few negative qualities as well.  Which is the best for you?

Poodles are intelligent, fun-loving, and easy to train. These dogs also get along well with strangers. Goldendoodles are energetic, affectionate, and love to socialize. Goldendoodles tend to be more uneasy around strangers. While these breeds are similar in nature, each possesses traits more suitable to some than others

Both breeds can be large or small. So, size isn’t going to be your determining factor when choosing one of these cute little guys, as you can get a miniature or standard size.  You will want to base your decision on their temperaments and personalities, as overall, this is the biggest component at play. Long walks or snuggles on the couch?  Easily trained or loyal to the end?  The choices are almost endless.

Here is a handy chart listing the differences between poodles and Goldendoodles:

ColorTemperamentIntelligenceCostLife SpanAppearanceHealth Issues
Poodle neutral coloring, with the added bonus of:
Blacks
Grays
Silvers
Whites
Easy going, east to train, Obedient, and typically peaceful, Gets along well with strangersExtremely Smart and easily trainedTypically between $700 and $2000 depending on the variety.12-15 Yearstypically trim, and for with extremely tight, curly hair. hip dyspepsia, cancer, heart problems
Goldendoodleneutral in color, beige, cremes, apricots, and even reds.High Energy, personable, and love to socialize, Uneasy around strangersAbove Average intelligence and learns commands quicklyTypically between $2100 and $5000 depending on the variety.10-13 yearsbuilt more like a retriever, and more average or muscular looking and have a loose, wavy hair. hip dyspepsia, joint problems, cancer

Major Difference Between Poodle and Goldendoodle

Poodles and goldendoodles are similar since goldendoodles are a crossbreed or hybrid of poodles and golden retrievers.  There are some key differences between the two breeds, though.   

Intelligence

Both breeds are smart dogs.  They both can be trained without a lot of resistance, and the main difference you will see in their intelligence will be their temperament.  Poodles are smart and relaxed, and goldendoodles are smart and high maintenance.  

Life Spans

The typical life span for a poodle is a little bit longer than a goldendoodle.  Poodles typically live 12-15 years, where goldendoodles live more on the 10-15-year range.  There are many contributing factors to that, that can come from the environment or illness, so it is dependent upon your dog and their circumstances. 

Cost

While both breeds can cost a lot of money, the Goldendoodle will likely dig a little deeper into your pocketbook:

  1. Poodles typically cost between $700 and $2000 depending on the variety.
  2. Goldendoodles will cost between $2100 and $5000 depending on the variety.

Appearance 

These are some of those more obvious differences between the two breeds

  1. Poodles are typically trim, and for with extremely tight, curly hair. 
  2. Goldendoodles are built more like a retriever, and more average or muscular looking and have a loose, wavy hair. 

Depending on the breed, you will also have a size difference.  Poodles come in toy, miniature, and standard, and Goldendoodles only comes in two sizes – small and standard.  For Goldendoodles, size depends on the size variety of the poodle parent.

One of the biggest assets for each dog’s appearance – they shed much less than other dog breeds, which can be a huge relief!  I for one, hate having dog hair on everything. 

Coloring is another variation Between these breeds. Goldendoodles are more neutral in color, beiges, cremes, apricots, and even reds.  Poodles share the same neutral coloring, with the added bonus of:

  • Blacks
  • Grays
  • Silvers
  • Whites

Poodle Temperament and Instincts

Because poodles are intelligent dogs, they tend to be much easier to train.  You likely won’t get the added stress of the blatant disobedience or stubbornness that you can get from other dog breeds. Their temperament overall is easy-going, and typically they are a breeze to train, and some even say they are one of the easiest dogs to train because of their intelligence. 

Now most dogs love water, and poodles are no different.  In Europe a few hundred years ago, poodles were trained to be water retrievers. What made them great water retrievers was not only the fact that they were obedient, but that they have extra hair in their ears that helps to keep out excess water, allowing them to stay in the water longer.  

Poodles are typically peaceful dogs and get along well with strangers. However, when they feel threatened or feel something is amiss, they can easily jump into watchdog mode.  Surprisingly, Poodles are great watchdogs.  They want to protect themselves as well as their family and their home. 

Goldendoodle Temperament and Instincts

One of the biggest and greatest traits these dogs have is affection.  They are HUGE lovers.  They will have you run them ragged with their high energy, and as soon as you sit down, they will be next to or on top of you trying to cuddle.  They love to be loved. From kisses to snuggles, they love it all.  And not just their humans either, they love other dogs and love snuggling up with their siblings or friends any chance they get. 

Because they are so high energy, exercise is crucial for goldendoodles.  They need to have an outlet for all of their pent-up energy, or they may take it out on your new couch, I know from experience!  The have athletic genes, so exercise is essential.  Make sure that you have the time for walks or a bigger space for them to run around in to help expel the energy.  

They are personable and love to socialize.  Weather with their family or other doggies, they love to be around others and thrive when they are.  They need to have that companionship.  Although, please be cautious when introducing to new dogs, as sometimes they get nervous and are a little uneasy with someone unfamiliar.  

Drawbacks of Each Breed

There will always be drawbacks, and since goldendoodles are a hybrid of poodles, they do share similar drawbacks.

Poodles:

  • Overall heave more health issues
  • High maintenance with grooming (every six to eight weeks need to be groomed)
  • Need a lot of exercise
  • Excessive barking

Goldendoodles:

  • High energy – need a lot of exercise
  • Can have social anxiety
  • Can be expensive to purchase – they are specifically bred, and the number of people wanting them has gotten higher 
  • Can develop destructive behavior when left alone – stemming from separation anxiety

Overall Health traits

Just like humans, animals can have health issues passed down from their ancestors.  More specifically, it may even be down to the variety of the specific breed as well. 

Like most dogs, Poodles and Goldendoodles suffer from joint issues.  For poodles, it is more of an inherited type of his, hip dysplasia.  For Goldendoodles, their joint issues are more from the excessive use of hind legs because they are so active.  They, too, can have issues with hip dysplasia, but not as common as with poodles. 

Both breeds will run the risk of more serious diseases such as cancer. However, poodles are especially at risk for developing cancer sometime during their lifetime. In fact, almost 40% of all poodle deaths are attributed to cancer. If addressed early on in their lives, there are preventative measures that can be taken, like surgery, that can be used to treat some of the issues.  

Check out this article I recently wrote on cancer in poodles. In it, you’ll learn which cancers are most common in poodles and the symptoms that may suggest the onset of cancer.

Since Goldendoodles are a relatively newer breed and not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC), it is harder to determine the percentage of these dogs which are getting sick, as the AKC does not track stats for this breed.

Conclusion

Poodles and Goldendoodles are both great choices for pets.  They do differ a bit but overall are pretty similar.  When making your decision to give your new furry friend their forever home, make sure you take everything into consideration, and please remember to love that dog!  If you choose to take the route in getting a rescue dog, please be aware they can be a little damaged, either emotional or physical, so give them time, and you will not regret bringing that sweet lie into your home. 

Brent Hartman

I'm Brent Hartman. I've been a dog lover my entire life and have owned many animals over the years. When my black lab Angus passed away, I was looking for another friend to share my life with. As a result of my research, I've come to love poodles and wanted to share some of what I've learned with you. Whether you're looking to adopt a poodle, or already own one, I created Poodle report to be the ultimate guide to help you find the answers you need.

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