Goldendoodle puppies are arguably one of the cutest Doodle offerings out there. Impossibly soft wavy fur and big puppy dog eyes give them an often teddy bearish appearance. Everyone says they don’t stay long for little though and boy are they right! These little scamps grow quickly not just in size but in brains too meaning they can seem to change in a blink of an eye.
In this article, we will give you a snapshot of the key stages to help understand what to expect both in appearance and behavior as they grow.
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Newly Born – Fresh out the packet – (1 to 3 weeks)
The newly born Goldendoodle, just like all dogs, arrives with his eyes still shut, no teeth, and very limited hearing. Mama dog is their world at this time, and she takes care of feeding, cleaning, and keeping her brood in check.
Growing Fast – Eyes open, tails wagging – (3 to 7 weeks)
In this window, the Goldendoodle grows and develops rapidly. Eyes open, hearing develops, and they start to move around. Social skills start to develop with puppies expressing signs of rivalry and development of a bit of a pecking order among their brothers and sisters. Some bossier pups may grow even faster at this stage by bustling others out the way for milk!
Puppyhood – Just the cutest Lil Dood! (7 to 12 weeks)
Most people will bring their little Goldendoodle home from a breeder around 7 to 12 weeks. At this age, they will be small and still getting to grips with things like moving around (think plenty of puppy tumbles) and understanding the world around them without the reassurance of their parent and siblings.
Coat wise they will be beyond floof! The Goldendoodle puppy coat will be different from their adult coat and is generally a lot softer and thinner. You might get some indication of just how curly they will be if they already have a clear wavy pattern, but some can appear straight coated in puppyhood only to go on and develop glorious curls in adulthood.
Terrible Twos – Tiny land shark – (3 to 6 months)
See the “terrible twos” that all the human parents refer to? Guess what your little Goldendoodle is supercharging their development towards it circa 3 months in. They are getting bolshy, and they are teething. This means all manner of things looks good for nibbling. Whether it be a chew toy, your best furniture, or your own body parts, it can be easy to question if you bought a dog or a land shark. The good news is this too shall pass!
In terms of size, your Goldendoodle will have more than doubled in size at 4 months from the little 8-week-old puppy you brought home. They will have started to shed their puppy coat too so don’t be alarmed if you are out more frequently with the vacuum. This should settle as their new coarser adult coat comes in. Only now will you see exactly just how curly (or not) your little Goldendoodle will be.
Teenage stage – Hormones, hormones, hormones – (6 to 18 months)
If you have a Toy or Mini Goldendoodle you will see their growth start to taper off around 6 to 8 months as they will be approaching fully grown. Your Medium or Standard Goldendoodle will still be growing like a weed.
At 6 months a Standard Goldendoodle will be approaching two-thirds of their total adult weight however continued growth slows from here on out and they won’t reach full size till around 18 months or older
The behavioral changes seen in a Goldendoodle’s teenage phase can be challenging. Just like human teenagers, hormonal changes as they approach sexual maturity can send them a little bit, well…. bonkers. Your obedient little pup may become stubborn overnight, or your confident little buddy becomes scared of his own shadow. Perseverance with training and plenty of patience is key.
Your Goldendoodle will also have had all their visits from the doggy tooth fairy and would be expected to have gained a full set of adult gnashers by around 6 to 8 months.
All Grown Up – Adults – (18 months – 8 years)
Even the biggest Standard Goldendoodles will be fully grown by around 18 months to 2 years. Expect to see a leveling off in puppy energy levels which will be replaced with the stamina expected of this breed. Fully developed bones mean you Goldendoodle can begin the more adventurous pursuits such as hiking, running, and swimming for longer durations.
As their growth levels out, it is important to keep an eye on feeding routines to avoid ending up with a chunky monkey which can play havoc on their joints. As an adult, it is important to maintain a regular brushing routine and grooming schedule to keep their coat in tip-top condition.
Seniors – Aging Gals and Older Gents – (8 years onwards)
Personally, I have a major soft spot for senior dogs and the senior Goldendoodle is no exception. This breed is known to retain their playful and loving demeanor well into their senior years meaning even though they may begin to slow down a bit after 8 years old, they will still be as loyal as ever.
In later life, many Goldendoodles will experience a change in their coat coloring. Lightening of the overall coat color or white/light markings around the face, chest, and rump. It is natural for older dogs to have some thinning of their coat meaning your Goldendoodle may not appear just as fluffy as they once were.
They may not run for as long, but the silver lining is plenty of extra couch snuggling opportunities. After all it is only right that the senior Goldendoodle gets suitably pampered in their twilight years for all the joy they have undoubtedly given to their humans over their lifetime. If only there was a way, they could live forever instead of 12 to 15 years!