Goldendoodles: Avoiding Common Health Problems

Avoiding common health problems associated with Poodles and Golden Retrievers

The wonderful, happy, loyal, and intelligent Goldendoodle is a breed recognized by neither the American nor the British Kennel Clubs. But that doesn’t matter to anyone who’s had the pleasure of welcoming a Goldendoodle into her home. 

What a Goldendoodle owner wants is a companion who is going to have a healthy and productive life filled with long walks and summer afternoons playing catch or maybe even jumping into the lake. A Goldendoodle has parentage from two established breeds—Poodles and Golden Retrievers.

Both breeds can have a list of common health problems that could result in difficult lives. That’s not what anyone wants for her dog. She wants her pet to be pain free and to be a wonderful companion—a best friend that is happy to see her and wants to spend as much time as possible with her. Because Goldendoodles are a combination of the two breeds, they possess a hybrid vigor that often gives them a life without the undesirable health concerns.

Issues common with Poodles

Poodles are often considered one of the most intelligent breeds of dogs. They are easy to train and sociable. Not possessing a territorial temperament, they are not often used as guard dogs.

One of the most common hereditary conditions afflicting Poodles is sebaceous adenitis. It describes an inflammation of glands located found in the hair follicles in the skin dermis. Without treatment, it can lead to the destruction of the gland and severe hair loss.

A condition that can affect humans as well as Poodles is Hypoadrenocorticism—or Addison’s Disease in people. It is a disorder that results in insufficient hormones created by the adrenal glands for normal function. The condition is fatal if left untreated.

Issues common with Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers were bred in Scotland to retrieve downed game for hunters. Today, they are more commonly used as companion or guide dogs due to their energy and affectionate disposition.

Hip and elbow Dysplasia impacts the joints of larger dog breeds, including Golden Retrievers. It occurs due to a misshapen ball and socket joint, causing the dog pain as it gets older because of the improper fit. 

No one likes the C-word. Cancer affects Golden Retrievers at nearly twice the rate of all other dogs combined. It is estimated 60% of all Golden Retrievers will die from cancer, mostly of hemangiosarcoma and lymphoma.

Goldendoodles often avoid these problems

Goldendoodles very often have a genetic advantage over both parent breeds because they have a greater genetic diversity. They also have a lower rate of homozygosity—the likelihood of carrying two dominant genes for genetic traits, leading to the associated afflictions.

Pure-breed dogs often have very similar genetic makeup, leading to inbreeding depression—a reduced biological strength. Goldendoodles, through their greater genetic diversity, have a lower susceptibility to genetic diseases.

This doesn’t mean they are impervious. Good health and a proper diet throughout a Goldendoodle’s lifetime will help prevent such afflictions like dysplasia that can still impact her. Take care of your companion, love her, and have her checked regularly by a good veterinarian.