Cute, intelligent, trainable, beautiful fur; Labradoodles make us all go gaga and excited. These friendly canines are jewels for keeps having proven their loyalty many times over. If you have bowed to the pressure of owning a dog, choosing the right breed is the first close step. When selecting from the variety of breeds, you are likely to get hit by the Labradoodle charm. Before you decide to seal the deal and buy this dog, you need to consider a few things.
Here are a few guiding tips to guide you when getting your first Labradoodle:
History of parents
A Labradoodle is a hybrid between a purebred Labrador retriever and a Poodle. This type of breeding is professionally done by breeders and should be properly documented. You should ask for the history of the parent breed. This information, if well presented, will be able to show the history of the dog. Many genetics traits are simply passed down the bloodline. The parent history record should provide you with adequate information. You will be able to know the possible genetic diseases passed down, if any. Color and other physical characteristics are also a result of parental lineage.
License of breeder
Many breeders tend to pose as licensed practitioners but aren’t. Once you have spotted an adorable Labradoodle on the internet, take extra caution when contacting them. Check their certification and research your state’s regulation regarding breeder licenses. The AKC (American Kennel Club) does not deliver any type of breeding licenses. They are merely a registry for dogs. Many aspiring dog owners have gone down the route of losing money unnecessarily. Be on the safe side and ask for the relevant documents. It is your right to do so. You do not want to end up with a Labradoodle with deficiencies not highlighted by the breeder. When operating with a licensed breeder, you have grounds for a legal suit.
Support from the breeder
What kind of after-sale support is the breeder willing to offer you? You may be new to pet ownership and need all the help you can get. If you are buying a puppy, you may realize that it is not housebroken. Does the breeder offer to come daily for some time to assist with that? How does the adoption of the older Labradoodles work? As a new owner, consider whether you are on your own or with professional help. Buying a Labradoodle without any knowledge about its needs can be disastrous.
Health and diseases Labradoodles are prone to
The general health of any dog you are willing to buy is vital. Often, the health record of a dog is with the breeder and available upon request. Labradoodles are prone to some diseases like hip and elbow dysplasia. These diseases affect the joints, especially where they do not fit well at the ball and socket area. The dog experiences discomfort and pain. This disease is hereditary. The Labrador retriever parent is also highly prone to these diseases. When choosing the Labradoodle, you should be open to specific treatments. Hydrotherapy, regular exercise, and surgery based on severity are options you should have. Ear infections are also common in Labradoodles due to their floppy ears. Therefore during grooming, you need to check for signs of ear infections continually. Other signs you should keep an eye out for are scratchy ears and unnecessary shaking of your dog’s head. Progressive Retinal Atrophy is another condition Labradoodles are prone to. It is the slow disintegration of the retina that can cause the dog to move from being night blind to day blind. If this is to happen, be sure to be an owner that does not change their furniture often.
A clear record of the vaccines administered to the Labradoodle should be available. Some breeders often skip these vaccinations, and it’s your job to be in the know. It also acts as a guide for you on where to move from and what vaccines to expect. In the US, the regulation stipulates that all puppies should get their first vaccination at six weeks of age, and thereafter every two to four weeks. The next vaccination your Labradoodle should get is at 16 weeks. After this, your dog should get vaccinations once a year or every three years, depending on the shot. Annual vaccination usually consists of the following: Canine Distemper, Adenovirus 2, Parainfluenza Virus, and Canine Parvovirus. Make sure you ask for records, even if you intend to buy an older dog instead of a puppy.
Labradoodles are a fairly expensive dog breed. Due to the immense popularity of designer dogs, such cross breeds go for just as much if not more than their counterpart purebreds. They range between $500 to $3000 for the puppies. If you choose to opt for a rescue, adoption fee ranges between $50 and $300. Even if this is the likely upfront fee, know that buying a puppy would come with many other costs. Some of these costs are training fees, feeding costs, vet costs, insurance, among others. Be ready to own up to these financial demands as a responsible dog parent.
Size of Labradoodle
Many think the Labradoodle is a one size fits all. Contrary to their thoughts, there are three different size ranges of this breed. The size of Labradoodles depends on the size of their Poodle parent. The categories are mini, medium, and standard size. Mini Labradoodles may weigh 15 to 25 pounds and stand 14 to 16 inches tall. Medium Labradoodles may weigh 30 to 45 pounds and stand 17 to 20 inches tall. Standard Labradoodles may weigh 50 to 65 pounds and stand 21 to 24 inches tall. Based on the size you like, you will know what to buy.
Sex of the dog
Do you want a female or a male Labradoodle? Are you interested in breeding, or do you just like girl dogs? Aside from the anatomy, some temperament differences are present. The mood swings during pregnancy from the female may affect their reception. Males may take some time to get trained. Some diseases like Urinary Tract infections are only prone to females. Understanding these dynamics will guide your choice when deciding the best sex to get.
Color and texture
The Labradoodle dog breed offers buyers a great variety of colors from which to choose. It is okay to be picky and color-specific when it comes to your dog. After all, you may want to exhibit your personality through the color of your dog, or you probably prefer colors that do not show dirt too much. Labradoodles come in gold, white, black, red, apricot, caramel, chocolate, blue and partial-color. They also vary in the texture of their coat. There are three types of coats to choose from. Some have a straight coat, which sheds more. Others have a wavy or fleece coat that has lower shedding than the straight one. The other type of coat texture is the curly one that has no shedding.
Neutered or not?
You need to know whether the dog you intend to buy is neutered or not. Neutering depends wholly on your preference and how responsible you are. There are many instances of dog euthanasia preference for healthy dogs due to over-breeding. There is no need to allow your pooch to breed when you have no idea of whether you can handle the puppies.
Labradoodles are very active dogs. Their need for exercise is not something you can ignore. They thrive on a minimum of an hour’s run in the morning and walk during the day or evening. If you are unable to provide the exercise yourself, consider alternatives. Incurring dog walking fees is one of them. There is an overwhelming availability of affordable dog walkers to help keep up with your dog’s fitness needs. If you have a yard, you should consider having it fenced before bring your buddy home. It will save you the trouble of finding your playful pet on the streets with strangers. Provide toys that stimulate your Labradoodle too. Mental exercise is just as important for these lovelies.
For a dog to make a great companion, you have to start training early. Housebreaking is important and can take a week. Labradoodles are highly intelligent as they take after their parent the Poodle. The Poodle is famed for being the second smartest dog alive. This translates to Labradoodles being very responsive to obedience training. Having a dog that responds to basic obedience commands goes a long way. ‘Sit’, ‘recall’, ‘come’, ‘go’, ‘fetch’ are a few of the commands your Labradoodle should know. If not, they will become hard to deal with, especially as they grow older. Labradoodles consider themselves as alphas. They have a hard time adjusting to a trained environment once they pass the puppy stage.
In the same way, you cannot teach an old dog new trick, consider training early when buying a puppy. Crate training is also essential as it ensures you can leave the dog in there safely. When traveling, the dog will also be accustomed to staying put until arrival. Labradoodles should also be socialized appropriately early so that they can be comfortable around other pets and people.
Owning a Labradoodle that does not shed at all isn’t a promise. Whereas the texture of the fur can give you a hint, you have to be sure of your preference regarding shedding. In comparison to many other dog breeds, they shed less. If you want the no shedding type, you can ask your breeder for a more definite answer. Mostly, they will tell you they’ll need to look for a pup that comes from a second-generation. Second-generation refers to the pairing of a Labradoodle and a standard poodle. What this means is that the dog is closer to a 70-30 mix of genetics. The dog will exhibit traits that are heavy on the poodle side, then a 50/50 split.
Labradoodles have a thick coat that catches the hair before it falls off. When this happens, the Labradoodle fur catches the allergen protein. This hypo-allergenic characteristic ultimately reduces its circulation. It minimizes any distribution to the air that leaves allergic people sneezing less to not at all. If you have children, Labradoodle fur is child-friendly. Often, young babies are allergic to pets and need a clean environment. Luckily, a Labradoodle is a great fit and pairs well with children.
Grooming is a necessary step towards having a dog that looks and feels good. Proper grooming helps provide a platform for you to bond with your dog and notice if anything is off. If you want to reduce the costs, you have to consider doing the grooming yourself. Buying shampoos, conditioners, brushes, and nail clippers will be a must. Taking a Labradoodle to a professional groomer could cost an overall charge of $100. If you do not intend to invest in time, know that the alternative is investing in monetary form.
Adaptability to changing weather
Are you concerned about your dog’s ability to survive and thrive in different weather forms? Labradoodle fur coats make it easy for them to adapt to extreme temperatures. Some people think that exposing dogs to winter can shorten their lifespan. That cannot be any further from the truth. Labradoodles are not affected by the winter season. You can buy them some jackets if you feel unsure that they are warm. Their lifespan has nothing to do with winter. They have a lifespan of averagely 13 years.
If you never thought a dog could be near perfect, you thought wrong. No fur brushing needed, trainable, very athletic, and last but not least, the most adorable bundle of fur you will ever need, Labradoodles have it all. Perfect for your children, these furballs crave love as much they give. Lastly, they are family dogs, and they will give you the best time of your life.