A Labradoodle is a crossbred dog created by crossing the Labrador Retriever and the Standard, Miniature or Toy Poodle. The term first appeared in 1955, but was not popularized until 1988, when the mix began to be used as an allergen-free guide dog. Currently, they are not considered a breed by any major fancier and breeder organization. Not all Labradoodles are hypoallergenic, but it is a quality that many look for and appreciate in this breed of dog. Since there is no real hypoallergenic dog, the term is often used loosely.
Because the Labradoodle is a hybrid and not a breed, puppies do not have consistently predictable characteristics.1 While most Labradoodles have some common traits, their appearance and behavioral characteristics remain, to some extent, unpredictable. As such, Labradoodles' hair can be anywhere from wiry to soft, and may be straight, wavy, or curly.1 Straight-coated Labradoodles are said to have hair coats, wavy-coated dogs have fleece coats, and curly-coated dogs have wool coats. Many Labradoodles do shed, although the coat usually sheds less and has less dog odor than that of a Labrador Retriever.
Like most Labrador Retrievers and Poodles, Labradoodles are generally friendly, energetic and good with families and children.1 Labradoodles often display an affinity for water and strong swimming ability from their parent breeds.
Their parent breeds are both amongst the world's most intelligent dog breeds.