Dogs were the first species humans domesticated some 15,000 years ago. This was the time of human hunter-gatherers. Humans benefited from this partnership to help hunt and kill prey.
Selective breeding (aka artificial selection) is a practice in which humans intentionally select a male and female to mate to produce offspring with certain desirable traits or qualities.
It was the Poodle who coined the term “designer dog” in the 20th Century by crossbreeding the Poodle and Cocker Spaniel (Cockapoo). It is argued that breeders used the Poodle due to public demand for low-shedding dogs for those with pet allergies.
Fast forward to now and there are thousands of crossbreeds found across the world. And they just keep on coming.
Table of Contents
Introducing the Goldendoodle and Australian Shepherd Cross…
The History of the Parent Breeds
Let’s split this breed down.
The Goldendoodle is a crossbreed consisting of two different purebred breed parents; the Poodle and the Golden Retriever.
It was in the 1990s that this breed was widely popping up in places such as America and Australia.
Although primarily bred for companionship, Goldendoodles are also widely known for acting as assistance dogs; a guide dog assisting his blind or visually impaired owner for example.
Australian Shepherd History
Don’t be fooled by the name. It is said that this breed descends from a mixture of working dogs such as collies. These, alongside sheep, were imported from Australia to America; the former giving rise to its name.
A shepherd dog, also known as a herding dog, is responsible for maintaining a herd of animals.
Australian Shepherds were developed in America, more specifically California, in the 19th century to herd sheep.
Why are Goldendoodles and Australian Shepherds Being Crossed?
There is little evidence out there to suggest that this cross is currently being bred. There are, however, breeders that have produced an Aussiedoodle which is either an Australian Shepherd x Poodle (with no Labrador) or an Australian Shepherd x Labradoodle.
For more information about this breed, check out our sister article the Labradoodle Australian Shepherd Mix
Like all other breeds, the reason for crossbreeding comes down to us humans and our fancy for certain characteristics that best suit our needs.
A Poodle may be a choice for someone who has an allergy to pets as this breed tends to shed their hair less around the house, compared with other breeds.
Sometimes, however, the human wants outweigh the needs and this may result in unethical breeding which may put the animal’s health at risk.
The Benefits of the Goldendoodle Australian Shepherd Cross
It is said that the Goldendoodle possesses good qualities from both parents; the Golden Retriever with its friendly and affectionate nature mixed in with the Poodle’s honorable intelligence.
Is it any wonder then that in 2021, the Goldendoodle was ranked in the top 5 most popular dog breeds in the US.
The Australian Shepherd has a high level of trainability.
The Cons of the Goldendoodle Australian Shepherd Cross
This will depend on you… would you prefer your pup to exhibit more characteristics of the Goldendoodle than the Australian Shepherd? For example, a thick curly coat.
But again, this may depend on how much Poodle is in the mix of the Goldendoodle.
Ultimately, it is a risk as crossbreeds most often display traits of both parents.
Australian Shepherds, due to their herding instinct, are known to herd younger family members or other pets. This may involve unwanted behavior such as nipping or biting at their heels.
Is it Ethical to Mix a Goldendoodle with an Australian Shepherd?
As with any breed, the dog’s welfare should undoubtedly come first.
Merle, which is a genetic coat color pattern consisting of dark blotches against a lighter background of the same color, is a well-known characteristic of the Australian shepherd.
And although it may aesthetically pleasing to some, it has been linked to health concerns such as sight and hearing difficulties if bred incorrectly, for example, merle-to-merle breeding. It is important to ensure that merle-to-merle is not a factor whenever breeding an Australian Shepherd.
You can learn more about mere and its dangers by reading is the merle gene bad – we investigate.
As long as the health of the dog is not compromised and is veterinary approved, it will be deemed an ethical breed.
What Can be Expected of a Goldendoodle Australian Shepherd Mix
Size & Weight
All breeds come in a variety of shapes and sizes regardless of whether they are a pedigree or crossbreed.
It is recommended to look at the parents to manage your expectations. This will give you some idea of what their offspring may look like and help you to make an informed decision.
The table below summarises the characteristics of both these breeds.
|Height||43- 61cm||46-58 cm|
|Weight||7 – 36kg||16-30 kg|
|Colour||Cream, apricot, black, gold, brown||Blue/red merle, red/black tricolor|
|Coat||Long, thick-haired||Long, wavy double coat|
Bear in mind that the height and weight will also depend on if the Goldendoodle has been bred from a Toy, Miniature, or Standard Poodle.
Both breeds require regular coat grooming. This not only prevents hair from knotting, but it also helps to remove loose hair, dirt, and dust from the coat.
Brushing the whole of the body can aid in distributing natural skin oils which are responsible for making the dog’s coat look shiny and healthy.
It’s incomprehensible to say that a certain breed is healthy. Countless studies have concluded that it is not possible to determine if crossbreeding will eliminate heredity traits.
Both Golden Retrievers and Australian Shepherds are amongst several other breeds most susceptive to this painful inherited condition.
It is caused by abnormal development of the hip joint in growing puppies. The hip joint is classically referred to as a “ball and socket joint”. In this condition, the ball and socket do not fit smoothly resulting in an unstable joint.
Any dog has the potential to be bad. It is therefore up to us as responsible owners to ensure early socialization is provided to prevent any undesirable behavior.
The good news is both breeds have been known to have a good attitude towards their counterparts and humans.
You will find many reliable sources referring to these breeds as the ideal family dog.
Large breed puppies mustn’t be over-exercised whilst in the growing phase, especially for the first six to twelve months.
If the physical activities are too strenuous or excessive, it puts the pup at risk of injury due to the rapid growth of these large breeds.
Follow a routine that involves several short walks per day, mixed with moderate indoor and outdoor play. Lots of appropriate socialization is also recommended at this stage.
Goldendoodles and Australian Shepherds are both classed as highly energic breeds. So, it’s important that they are provided with daily opportunities to burn off some steam!
The Australian Shepherd shines at many dog sports such as dog agility and obedience trial.
This will depend on the weight of the dog. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure the correct amount is being fed. This is especially of interest with regards to growing puppies.
“In fact, large breeds reach 50 percent of their body weight at around 5 months of age”
Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc
Overfeeding, as well as underfeeding, can cause serious health problems such as obesity and malnutrition. It is; therefore, paramount correct measures are followed.
It can certainly feel somewhat overwhelming when faced with the choice of deciding which furry friend to pick. It is fundamental to take into consideration not only your needs but also the dogs. This may involve asking yourself a question such as: Am I able to provide the recommended exercise requirements for this specific breed?