Goldendoodle Colors: A Complete Guide

Doesn’t everyone love a curly-haired baby, especially one of the four-legged variety?

If you’re new to the wonderful world of Goldendoodles then you could be forgiven for assuming that they come in just one color. However, the clue isn’t in the name here. Depending on the coat and color of the bitch and stud, and even their parents, there is a vast range of shades and colors for you to choose from, each as eye-catching as the last.

You may ask why there are so many colors of Goldendoodle. The answer simply lies with the sheer variety of the colors of the poodle and Golden Retriever and the eclectic combinations therein. The Golden Retriever has three recognized colors and the Poodle seven. It doesn’t take your average mathematician to conclude this results in many combinations.

(N.B. Source used for colour recognition is the American Kennel Club (AKC). Golden Retriever recognized colors are dark golden, golden and light golden. Poodle recognized colors are apricot, blue, brown, café-au-lait, cream, grey, and silver.)

Cast your eyes on our dedicated catalogue below to see which is your favorite curly-haired baby.

Ranging from the most common to the rare, here is the plethora of colors in which your Goldendoodle can come. Take a look at Know Your Doodles’ compilation and start your decision-making process of which is the right one for you:

Red Goldendoodle

Whilst red is not an American Kennel Club (AKC) recognized color for either the Poodle or the Golden Retriever the beautiful, silky mahogany shades of this coat is what makes it one of the most popular colors for a Goldendoodle. Inherited from the gene pool of both breeds this coat can and does lighten as your pup grows.

Brown Goldendoodle

Also referred to as chocolate the brown Goldendoodle, like their black coated cousin inherits their color from their Poodle parent (or grandparent). As the brown poodle is a recognized breed by the American Kennel Club (AKC) they are one of the more popular varieties. As ‘Café-au-lait’ is another official poodle shade should this be their parentage, whilst still falling under the sub heading of brown this would make your best friend a lighter shade than the dark walnut a brown Poodle would produce.

Black Goldendoodle

Many people aren’t aware that this cute little pup actually can have a black coat as they are not as prevalent as the cream or apricot variety. They are often mistaken for a full breed Standard Poodle, especially if they have also inherited those Poodle curls. Their coloring is inherited from the Poodle gene pool and unlike their lighter coloured counterparts your black Goldendoodle’s coat won’t lighten as they grow unless they carry the silver, blue or grey recessive gene.

Apricot Goldendoodle

The apricot Poodle is amongst one of the recognized colours by the American Kennel Club (AKC) making it a popular choice when breeding with the Golden Retriever to produce a Goldendoodle. The apricot Goldendoodle is the most popular color choice for this breed, most probably because of how it resembles the very cutest of teddy bears. Like most of the lighter colored Goldendoodles the coat can, over time, lighten and they are sometimes mistaken for their lighter colored cream cousins. Their color is inherited from both gene pools.

Barney – Apricot Goldendoodle

Tan Goldendoodle

Although less popular than the apricot and cream Goldendoodle the tan coated pup is a combination of the two and both colors can been seen within their markings. If you are specifically looking for a tan Goldendoodle it may be worth speaking to reputable breeders to see when their next litters are due.

Silver, Blue and Grey Goldendoodles

After multiple generational breeding of the goldendoodle these three of the rarer varieties get their color from the recessive genes of their ancestors. They will generally appear black coated as puppies. By six to ten weeks old the fur will begin to lighten. By age two your Goldendoodle with typically have their full coat of silver, blue or grey.

Cream Goldendoodle

Bella – Cream Goldendoodle

Bred from the English cream Golden Retriever and also known as the teddy bear Goldendoodle the cream Goldendoodle is said to be a good choice for those who want the Golden Retriever side of the mix to be more recognized in their appearance. Whilst the color can be inherited from each lineage the Golden Retriever gene tends to be the most dominant. They are the second most popular choice of colour when choosing a Goldendoodle. They can also, depending on the inherited genes, have a brown pigment making them a caramel color.

Black & White Goldendoodles

A black and white Goldendoodle is generally a parti Goldendoodle. To qualify as parti there must be at least 50% white coloring to the coat. Where black is the more dominant color they would then be best described as having abstract (also known as chrome or mismarks) or merle markings. A black phantom Goldendoodle can also have white markings. However, whilst black and white is not an official colouring of the Goldendoodle, should this be the one that you want then a search for ‘Black and White Goldendoodle’ will most definitely show you how beautiful these are and start you on the right track to find a reputable breeder.

Sable Goldendoodle

Your sable Goldendoodle will start their life with a black or dark brown coat. The sable gene gives the fur a two-tone complexion and as your pup grows the color will lighten considerably. Sometimes the black tips to their coat does not disappear completely and this can be left visible on their legs and tips of their ears. One of the more unique colors is quite possibly what makes the sable Goldendoodle my favorite.

Patterned Goldendoodles

Aside from the block colors we have detailed above the Goldendoodle comes in many patterns. We have touched on a few in our descriptions above, it would be hard not to when there are so many variations to the coat. Here is a more concise breakdown:

  • Parti Goldendoodle – A parti is used to describe a Goldendoodle of more than one color. More specifically where at least 50% of their coloring is white with solid patches of another color.
  • Abstract, mismarks or chrome – A reverse of the parti these Goldendoodles are solid colour with white markings covering less than 50%.
  • Tuxedo – With the white coloring concentrated on the legs and chest this form of parti patterning makes your Goldendoodle look like they are wearing a tuxedo.
  • Merle – Merle is a varied coat pattern with random markings. Blue merle and chocolate merle are seen when the merle gene in prevalent in the black or chocolate Goldendoodle. However, the gene can be carried without showing any markings. This is known as a cryptic merle. As the merle gene can cause both blindness and deafness dogs should not be bred when both are cariers unless this is by very knowledgeable and experiences breeders.
  • Watercolor Merle – Also known as a Maltese or atypical merle. Both rare and striking these pups will be born a lighter shade of their base colour and markings will only appear on black or chocolate Goldendoodles. For example, a black Goldendoodle with the watercolor merle gene will be born a dark grey. A chocolate dog will start out gold. If a cream or red dog is a carrier of the gene, then the markings will not be visible on their coat.
  • Phantom – A phantom’s markings are very specific and can occur over different colours. Both the Poodle and the Golden Retriever must carry the phantom gene in order for the pup to display the markings. These will show on their face (specifically the sides of the muzzle), eyebrows, chest, inside of all four legs and under the tail.
  • Brindle – As with the phantom pattern both parents need to be carriers in order to produce brindle offspring. Brindle is a form of stripe and can be bold or barely visible. The pattern will vary in length, width and intensity in each Goldendoodle.
  • Seal – Rare and mysterious there is little known about what causes this coloration and has yet to be linked to any particular gene. It gives a black Goldendoodle a brownish appearance whilst keeping a black nose (a brown Goldendoodle would typically always have a brown nose).
Black & White Parti Goldendoodle

Is my Goldendoodle officially recognised?

The American Kennel Club

As previously mentioned, there are three colors of Golden Retriever and seven of Poodle recognized by the American Kennel Club. (Golden Retriever recognized colors are dark golden, golden and light golden.

Poodle recognized colors are apricot, blue, brown, café-au-lait, cream, grey, and silver.)

However, the AKC do not recognize the Goldendoodle itself.

The Kennel Club UK

The UK Kennel Club may allow you to register your Goldendoodle on their activity register (but not their (pedigree) breed register. They pride their primary aim to be to protect and promote all dogs including crossbreeds. However, they are also aware to not actively encourage the unscrupulous crossbreeding of ‘designer dogs’ for pure financial gain.

Alongside the dark golden, golden and dark golden of the Golden Retriever the UK Kennel club cream is also allowable as an acceptable coat colour.

UKC accepts Poodles of the following colors; Apricot, black, blue, cream, grey, silver, white, red, silver beige and all shades of brown including café-au-lait.

Australian National Kennel Council

The ANKC does not recognize the Goldendoodle.

The Golden Retriever is permissible in any shade of cream or gold. Reds and mahoganies are not permissible. They will allow a small smattering of white hairs on the chest only.

The allowable coat attributes by the ANKC for the Poodle are quite specific. All solid colours are allowable but other characteristics must be as follows:

  • White and cream must have black noses, eyerims and lips with black toenails being desirable
  • Brown are to have dark amber eyes and a dark liver nose, lips, eyerims and toenails
  • Dark eyes with black points or deep amber eyes with liver points are required for an apricot Poodle
  • Black, silver and blue are all require to have a black nose, lips, eyerims and toenails
  • Clear colours are preferred and apricot, cream, silver, brown and blue Poodles may all show varying shades of the same color for up to eighteen months.

Canadian Kennel Club

Again, as other official registration bodies, the Goldendoodle is not recognised by the CKC.

The breed standard colours set out by the CKC for the Golden Retriever is “lustrous golden of varying shades”. As the ANKC, a few white chest hairs are allowable but certainly not desirable. Greying or whitening of the face and body due to the age of the dog will go unfaulted. A noticeable area on the coat of black or any other off-color will be faulted.

To be recongnized the Poodle can be of any solid colour. Whilst varying shades of the same color will be permitted in the blues, grey, silver, browns, café-au-laits, apricots and creams a parti coloured Poodles will be disqualified.

New Zealand Kennel Club

The Goldendoodle is not recognised by the NZKC.

The Poodle, like other kennel club regulations, must have a solid colour coat although natural variation is permissible. Parti colored Poodles are not permitted.

The breed standard set out by the NZKC for the Golden Retriever is any shade of cream or gold. A few white chest hairs will be allowable. Red and mahogany are not recognized.

Continental Kennel Club

Whilst all of the above organizations will not recognize the Goldendoodle because it is a cross breed it is recognized by the Continental Kennel Club (CKC). The CKC was founded in 1991 and has become a legitimate alternative to registering your purebred cross breed dog. The CKC will, to a high standard perform checks on the ancestry of your Goldendoodle to ensure that its lineage is, in fact from pedigree breeds of Golden Retriever and Poodle. The documentation of the pedigree of the original parents is to not only standadize and protect the breed but to have the ultimate goal of being recognized in its own right. This in turn will allow the Goldendoodle into the show arena. A minimum of five generational Goldendoodle to Goldendoodle breeding will be one required standard.


What is the most popular Goldendoodle color?

Apricot is the most popular colour choice followed by cream and then red.

Will my Goldendoodle change color?

It’s very possible that your Goldendoodle will lighten as it grows. This is something to bear in mind when choosing your pup. The exceptions are black and darker brown Goldendoodles. However, these can still change to grey, silver or blue if they carry the recessive gene.

What color Goldendoodle is best?

Whilst the answer to the most popular color can be found above, ‘best’ is subjective. The best colour Goldendoodle is the one which you want to join your family.

So, there we have it. What color is a Goldendoodle? The answer is quite possibly thousands when you calculate the possibilities based on the colors of the parents, the many different patterns and the pure chance of dominant and recessive genetics. Do your research, find a reputable breeder and go with the color which suits you. I can guarantee that whichever of the many alternatives your chose that you won’t be disappointed.