Labradoodles have taken over the world and our hearts. These fluffy dogs are a favorite of many for their personality and lovable goofiness. Add in the fact that they are incredibly intelligent and it sounds like the perfect dog has been found.
But, there is more than just goofiness to these dogs when it comes to their incredible personality. There are risks involved with bringing a Labradoodle puppy home as you are not going to be 100% sure about their personality until they grow up. So, what can you expect?
Take a read below for a more detailed look into the Labradoodle temperament to get a better understanding of what to look out for and how their personality traits develop as they mature.
Psst… A Labradoodle is a really well-behaved dog but there are more behaved dog breeds you’ll love if you want a friend for it.
- 1 9 Key Elements of the Labradoodle Temperament
- 1.1 1. What is a Labradoodle?
- 1.2 2. What Kind of Personality Do Labradoodles Have?
- 1.3 3. Are Labradoodles Easy to Train with their Temperament?
- 1.4 4. They Make Amazing Family Dogs
- 1.5 5. Labradoodles are Incredibly Intelligent
- 1.6 6. Their Temperament Suits First-Time Owners
- 1.7 7. Their Personality Does Have a few Cons
- 1.8 8. Labradoodles are Loyal
- 1.9 9. Their Personality Means That They Sometimes Need Motivation
- 2 Final Thoughts on the Labradoodle Temperament
9 Key Elements of the Labradoodle Temperament
1. What is a Labradoodle?
These dogs are an interesting mix of a Labrador Retriever and a Poodle. Interestingly, they are not classified as a breed but rather more as a hybrid dog because of their cross-breeding. Labradoodles have become a designer dog but they were created for a very different purpose.
They were originally cross-bred to be a service dog to help visually impaired people move around. They have also been used as therapeutic dogs for those that need them. It is because of the qualities that come with this, their gentle nature and happy-go-lucky attitude, that they have become so desirable.
Over the years they have built a reputation for being the near-perfect family dog that adores everyone and all other pets in the house. Being a hybrid does mean that there are some inconsistencies that can range between their coat and even their personality. You never know what you truly have until they are fully grown.
This hybrid actually can grow up to be three different sizes; average, medium and standard. The standard is the largest of the Labradoodles and the average is the smallest.
Both of the original parent breeds are quite large with only the Poodle having differences in sizes. The size of your Labradoodle will depend on which Poodle type bred with the Labrador.
Their appearance of these designer dogs is probably the most notable when it comes to the inconsistencies in their genetic make-up, along with their personalities. Breeders around the world though are continuing efforts to establish a set of consistencies within the dogs so that the breed can be officially recognized.
2. What Kind of Personality Do Labradoodles Have?
When it comes to this dog’s personality temperament, it’s somewhat of an unknown because of the cross-breeding that takes place. There are a few traits that are commonplace amongst them but which traits the dog adopts is determined by the genetics of the parents.
One of the main reasons for creating this hybrid was to contain the best of the Labradors and Poodles character traits while attempting to remedy any of the undesirable traits.
There are two different hybrid generations of Labradoodle, the F1 and the F2. The F1 generation is bred using pure breeds of both parent dogs, a Labrador and Poodle. This breeding between two purebreds is done to make the genetics more consistent and ensure that the offspring inherit less of the health concerns from their parents.
The F2 hybrid generations are created when both of the parents are Labradoodles already. This is where things get tricky as the differences between Labradoodles mean that these puppies will be more susceptible to common health problems. It is these inconsistencies that cause differences in personality traits and temperament.
A puppy will be a bit of a genetic lottery with it either favoring one or the other breed’s characteristics. One thing is for sure, they will be a mixture of rowdiness and poise with huge amounts of energy that will need to be worked off during the day. They also love to swim so frequent trips to the beach or your pool will be a highlight of their day.
Some characteristics can be more stable than others from a multi-generational bred puppy. But for more of an idea of what you can expect, here are the temperament and personality traits of the parent breeds.
Australian labradoodles are known to have a calmer disposition than standard labradoodles.
The positive attitude with which this breed lives its life is what attracts everyone to Labradors. They have an infectious energy that will leave you smiling, even when they get a little too rowdy. They are also incredibly intelligent and are really good around families with children, a much-desired characteristic.
Overall, the Labrador is an incredibly friendly dog. Perhaps not the best quality that you would like for a watchdog, but that isn’t their purpose. Interestingly, the Labrador is also known to be very receptive to training and is one the easiest breeds to train. They are a loyal dog breed that would do anything for their owners. This is a breed that would never cheat on you!
You could potentially inherit the Labrador coat with your Labradoodle pup so be prepared for a lot of hair to float around if that is the case as they are immense shedders.
Poodles are famously intelligent and incredibly trainable. There are also different kinds of Poodle breeds that can be used to breed a Labradoodle, somewhat influencing the puppy.
This is more related to size though, instead of temperament. They make really good watch dogs as they are very alert and receptive to the situation around them.
Funnily enough, Poodles are also known to be a little neurotic if you over-indulge in their pampering.
They have a hypoallergenic coat, one of the top reasons they are used in a lot of hybrid dogs.
The idea was to produce this coat for the Labradoodle to help visually-impaired owners who could benefit from the use of a guide dog but were allergic to dogs. This is a trait that is used a lot to help the image of the Labradoodle but it is not always true that they are hypoallergenic.
NB: Female Labradoodles and Male Labradoodles tend to have very similar temperaments.
3. Are Labradoodles Easy to Train with their Temperament?
Considering that both of the purebred parents are desired for their intelligence, Labradoodles are incredibly easy to train. Their intelligence allows them to process all information at a high and fast pace. They love to be mentally stimulated and please their owners and have the capacity to do so.
Challenging them with some dog puzzles or challenges would be beneficial as they can become quite destructive when they are bored. Sometimes a firm hand can be needed as proper training is essential. They do get easily excited and can be a handful to try and control in sticky situations, especially if they are on the larger side.
Training sessions will have an impact on their temperament so it is a critical phase in the development of your Labradoodle pup. Their lovable nature and affection can be too much, especially with smaller children.
A good tip is to try and meet your new puppy in person when choosing, as each pup should have a pretty calm personality while being eager and inquisitive.
A solid training regime will also help to curb any mischief that they may get themselves into, something that they inherit from their extroverted Labrador parents. Early socialization is also an important aspect in the early development of their temperament.
A Labradoodle who is well socialized and who has been exposed to the world will be a lot less timid and stand-offish. Early socializing will also help in creating different boundaries to prevent any possible temperament or personality issues.
They tend to just throw themselves into any new interaction with another dog with complete disregard for dog social etiquette. This can be somewhat of a problem if your pup isn’t trained early on how to interact or socialize with other dogs.
4. They Make Amazing Family Dogs
Labradoodles make amazing family pets. They are fantastic with young children and love to play. Although don’t think you are getting yourself a guard dog. Their playful personality means that they are more likely to bark and then shower someone in affection than bite.
They love to play and will attract all the attention that they can with this playful attitude. Labradoodles are also relatively intuitive when it comes to playtime and know when it is time to take a step back.
Labradoodles are also really calm and love to show affection. This makes them a really good dog to have around the house. The calmness will come with training though as their enthusiasm for playing and having fun can make them a little rambunctious and not know their own strength.
Training is important so that your Labradoodle knows its own limits, its excitable attitude means that it could be a little too extroverted and accidentally knock your child over. This shouldn’t scare you though as they are really good with children overall, so with the right training, there will be no issues at all.
Just make sure that you exercise them enough, roughly one hour a day, to keep their energy levels normal and curtail any possible hyperactivity that may make them act out. If you have other pets at home, that won’t be an issue.
They love to be friends with pretty much everyone and have been noted as even being friendly to any felines that you may have at home as well. Some labradoodles can even do well as therapy dogs.
5. Labradoodles are Incredibly Intelligent
Yes, this has been talked about but it is an important aspect of the Labradoodles temperament. It is the one common characteristic that you can be pretty sure your puppy will have thanks to both of the parent breeds being intelligent dog breeds.
This high level of intelligence means that they do need to be mentally occupied pretty often and have their minds challenged. Some mentally stimulating games are the best way to keep them engaged. A fun and simple way is to put a treat under a cup and then have two other empty cups, mix them around and let them find the treat each time.
Both of the parent breeds were also bred to be retriever dogs for hunting so you would need to interact with that retrieving instinct. Playing fetch or hiding objects and asking them to find them is also a good way to keep them entertained.
If they get a little bored then the dark side of their temperament comes out. Labradoodles can be quite destructive. So beware that if you leave them for too long, you could come home to find a room of fluff everywhere.
6. Their Temperament Suits First-Time Owners
It is because Labradoodles are so easy to train from a young age and they have a pretty calm yet excitable personality that they suit the confident first-time owner. They do need a fair amount of exercise and attention with their puppy years being the most important in behavior development.
They can be taught to respond consistently and return to you when calling them. This means more time off the dog leash and confidence for the owner.
They can adapt to most situations and owners but a larger house or property is preferred instead of a smaller apartment. Their energy levels will not allow for a smaller apartment to keep them adequately occupied.
Both Labradors and Poodles are known to be incredibly affectionate and love their owners. The Labradoodle inherits this from both of them. In general, these intelligent dogs are a really good option for anyone who is making their way into the dog world for the first time.
Just bear in mind again that because this is a hybrid dog and not a fully acknowledged breed, there will be some inconsistencies in their characteristics. You will either end up with a quiet puppy if it takes after the Poodle or an immature and slightly noisier one if it takes after the Labrador.
NB: First time owners in particular should make sure they’re aware of the potential health issues of this breed like hip dysplasia.
7. Their Personality Does Have a few Cons
Although there are so many positives to having a Labradoodle around your house, the personality of this hybrid breed does come with a few things that you should also be aware of. These are traits to just keep your eyes on so that any bad behavior isn’t encouraged.
They Can Get a Little Anxious
Being that they love their owners so much and want to be around them, Labradoodles can get a little anxious if they are left alone for long periods of time. They get very attached to their owners and will do almost anything for them, which is an amazing quality to have.
A good way to try and curb any possible separation anxiety when they are left alone is to not make a massive deal of it when you leave to go out for a bit. This is something worth monitoring over time though as they can act out from this anxiety and get a little destructive to gain attention.
They Can Get too Over-Excited
A Labradoodle is such a happy dog that this positive outlook and general happiness can be quite infectious at times. That is why they are so loved, they are able to lift the mood in the room whenever they enter. But, this attitude can also be a bit of a problem when it is encouraged or not controlled.
This is where their training will come in. You don’t want to have them getting out of hand and jumping up on or hassling the new people that they meet. You don’t want to crush their immense joy but just control it a little so that it won’t cause any harm to them or anyone they may meet.
It is more of a safety thing as your Labradoodle may be a brilliant dog that can be trusted but you wouldn’t want them charging towards dogs that you are unsure about. They love a little too much, trust very easily and get very excited when meeting new dogs and people. Admirable traits, but it can get them into trouble at times.
8. Labradoodles are Loyal
They were bred in the first place to be service dogs so they are extremely loyal and compassionate to their family. This is where the separation anxiety comes in as they are so utterly devoted to their owners that they act out by barking or chewing for attention.
This bond will form over the years as the pup grows up and matures. They are a life-long companion who loves to make their owners happy. They won’t be shy either when they want a little attention and will be pretty vocal about it.
It is in the nature of Labradoodles to be very loving which is why they form bonds with everyone and everything in a family with relative ease and pretty quickly. But, although loyal, they are not good guard dogs so if that is what you are looking for then a Labradoodle may not be for you.
A Labradoodle will generally notice the energy of the owner and then mimic that energy level. So, if you are an active individual who is always outdoors and going on hikes, you can be assured that you will inherit a little hiking buddy that will go on all your adventures with you. Your pooch will likely adopt similar interests to yours and always be excited to do so.
All they want to do is spend as much time with you as possible, doing any activity. Whether that is sleeping on the couch together or running up a mountain, they will be by your side.
9. Their Personality Means That They Sometimes Need Motivation
The temperament that comes with your little Labradoodle means that they have specific needs when it comes to training them. Positive reinforcement is the best approach. Although they love to learn and are highly intelligent, they still can get bored and need some motivation to keep them interested.
There are a few sure-fire ways to ensure that you can motivate your little doggo to its fullest potential.
Shower Them With Approval
These little dogs are people pleasers and they take joy in pleasing their owners. They might struggle at first to figure out what it is exactly that you are wanting them to do. But, they will also give it their all to try and do it.
Exploit this characteristic as much as possible by actively honoring any of their positive behavior with a ton of approval and affection. It will make them thrive, even if they only got close to doing the correct command. A little treat as a reward will also go a long way in showing approval.
Playtime is a Good Way to Motivate and Reward
Now that it has been well established that they love to play and are very social dogs by nature, you can reward or motivate your Labradoodle with some playtime. You can reinforce good behavior after training by having some playtime with them.
Not only is this super fun for them and for you but it will help burn off some of the immense amount of energy that these dogs have. They can go from being asleep peacefully on your lap to a massive ball of hyper energy within seconds.
Labradoodles really do love to interact with their owners and family. So a little playtime after attempting something that could be frustrating for them is a nice reward for their personality type.
Just remember that a clear distinction between playtime and training is needed or they could confuse commands for playtime which will encourage their fun attitude and behavior.
Final Thoughts on the Labradoodle Temperament
These dogs have a real passion for life that makes them charge into it full-steam with an attitude of positivity and happiness that would make anyone jealous. A Labradoodle will be an amazing addition to any family and will fast become one of the favorites and a center of attention.
If you find yourself choosing between a Labradoodle or Goldendoodle, there are plenty of attributes that could sway you either way. But, remember that there is a dog out there for everyone and even if a Labradoodle isn’t for you right now, it doesn’t mean that it can’t be in the future.
There are a lot of Labradoodles out there, so wherever possible always try and adopt before purchasing a pup from a breeder. These little guys are worth the time and energy and will reward you tenfold with love and affection.
NB: Remember when you are looking at Labradoodle puppies only work with a reputable breeder. If you want some guidance, check out this article from the American Kennel Club in the United States.