“The great pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool out of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool out of himself too.” – Samuel Butler
Are Labradoodles smart? I’ve been trying to figure this out for the last year now, and I like to think yes, of course, since we have two!! But, honestly, I am still not sure.
Meet Cream Puff (Creamy) and Cocoa Puff (Cocoa), or, as my vet likes to call them, the Puff sisters. They are both seven year old Australian Labradoodles and they are littermates. Creamy was the runt of the litter and was matched by the breeder with Cocoa in order to have one dog as dominant. Australian Labradoodles were originally bred for blind people with allergies. They are supposed to be smart and have very good temperaments. My fiancé has had them since they were eight weeks old, and got them as perfect family pets for his kids and himself since he is allergic to cats and most dogs, and our dogs are hypoallergenic. They don’t shed and they don’t have any dander. When their fur grows they look like little sheep! (Here are 15 other great hypoallergenic dogs and cats!)
Are Labradoodles Smart?
A Labradoodle is a cross between a Labrador Retriever and a Poodle, and now there are multiple generations of Labradoodles that have Labradoodles as both parents. There are miniature, medium and standard size Labradoodles; Creamy and Cocoa are Medium size, right in the middle. They are the perfect size to cuddle with; not too big to push you all the way off the couch, but not so small that they assume they are lap dogs and try to climb up in your arms. My fiancé tells me that some of the family members wanted the small dogs, but he convinced them to get the medium size so the hawks and coyotes in Rancho Santa Fe would not eat the dogs!
They both are very friendly dogs, not sure if that converts to intelligence but it is a great quality of the breed! Whenever anyone comes home Creamy runs around the house as if she hasn’t seen anyone in days! She leaps from across the room onto the couch and rolls all around on it joyfully. This article in Petwave about Labradoodle’s temperament says, “Most Labradoodles like to jump on furniture and into their owners’ laps, so prospective owners should be prepared to do lots of training if this behavior is not acceptable.”
Our dogs have been professionally trained, but we don’t mind them enjoying the couch to the fullest! But it still makes me wonder…are labradoodles smart?
Cocoa is the protective guard dog and likes to warm up to new people first before being overly friendly. Creamy has no guard whatsoever. Cocoa will bark if there is anyone at the door or in the yard, and Creamy will only bark if it sounds like a fun activity for the time being. We have an outdoor fireplace that is open on both sides. One side of the fireplace is by the built-in spa adjacent to the master bedroom, and the other side opens to the outdoor family area. No matter what side people are on, Creamy has no fear of jumping right up, in and through the fireplace to get more attention. Cocoa will wait by the gate in between for someone to open it, unless someone is doing something terribly exciting on the other side, such as eating chicken or petting Creamy a lot. When I first moved to San Diego, Cocoa would get through the fireplace but would be scared to jump from the ledge to the grass for fear of falling in the hot tub water. She would just stare at you from the middle of the fireplace and you’d have to coax her over to the side. Now she has no fear of crossing, but also not a lot of desire, so she saves her fireplace hurdles for special moments. Her laziness makes me think she isn’t intelligent, when really she has just figured-out that her fireplace jump will only get her a small treat or pet, which in the end isn’t worth the jump. Maybe she is actually quite brilliant.
A few weeks ago I was enjoying some time relaxing in the hot tub right outside our master bedroom and Creamy didn’t see that the fireplace was turned on! She came around to me and started licking my face, and then I noticed some edges of her fur had been singed off! She was so determined to be with me that she had jumped through the flame! That’s dedication! Not a wise move, but she definitely has drive and passion! Maybe that day she had watched a Tony Robbins seminar where he walked on hot coals?! She is always happy and positive, no matter how many times she gets in trouble for stealing socks out of our closets. How many times can she get in trouble for stealing socks before she is smart enough to know NOT to steal them?! I wish I had more of a carefree attitude like hers. Does a good attitude equal intelligence though?
Cocoa wants to learn, and she gets excited about learning. A few months ago we started teaching her to shake and after a few weeks of showing her, she finally did it! Now she is a pro and can shake with both paws every time you ask her to! She is seven years old, so if she can learn a new trick at this age (or even re-learn it if she knew the command as a puppy) she must be very smart. Creamy knows the commands sit and down, but has no interest in learning any new commands at all.
Creamy is smart enough to make the leap through the fireplace every single time, but Cocoa however, not so much. Today Cocoa was walking around the hot tub when suddenly she accidentally slipped and fell right in the hot tub! Fortunately for her, the heat was not turned-on. She was immediately soaking wet and she knew it. She didn’t even try to jump out quickly. Instead, she made her way over to the stairs and walked out slowly. She knew what she had done, and she knew that she would be wet for a while. I laughed at her cute face, looking up at me wondering when she would ever be dry enough to be let back in the house. She definitely has her moments of silliness, like when she comes inside with 45 flowers stuck to her fur or when she sleeps upside down and starts snoring, but I think overall, our family Labradoodles are pretty smart dogs! I think.
Please share your stories about your pets with us!