Meet a dog with the sweetness of the Cocker Spaniel and the silliness of the Poodle! An original Doodle, the Spoodle is a true trendsetter. Learn more about this hybrid’s personality, health and grooming needs. Does your Spoodle need some quality kibble in their tummy? Sign up for Dinner Bowl Kibble for some premium dry dog food!
Quick Facts ✔
Height – 25cm (Toy), 27-35cm (Miniature), 36-38cm (Standard)
Weight – 5.5kg (Toy), 5.5-8.5 (Miniature), 8.5-10kg (Standard)
Lifespan – 13-15 years
Country of origin – U.S.A
Other names – Cockapoo, Cockerdoodle, Cockerpoo
Breed type – Hybrid
- Families with other pets, including cats
- Apartment living
- Families with children
Spoodle Breed History ♜
All of the doodles we know and love today have a similar background story. Dog fanciers in the later half of the 20th century went bananas crossing the beloved Poodle with multiple other dog breeds. This was partly as a way to make the most popular breeds of the day more hypoallergenic, since the Poodle’s curly coat is notoriously dander-free. Plus, Poodles come in all different sizes, making them ideal contenders for all sorts of hybrid options.
And, while most of the hybrids were developed in the 1990s, the Spoodle was truly an OG designer dog. Crossings of Cocker Spaniels and Poodles began as early as the 1960s. And they were so successful, that they likely paved the way for other doodle hybrids.
Thanks to the Spoodle’s lovely personality, this dog has become a favourite for service jobs, but you’ll mostly find them in family homes. Like all doodles, the Spoodle isn’t a recognised breed. But that doesn’t stop them from being one of the most popular doggos around!
As is the case with all hybrids, Spoodles can fall into one of many categories such as F2, F1b, and so on. If you’re not a geneticist, the terminology may be a bit confusing. So let’s break it down.
A first generation Spoodle is called F1, and is the result of a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle. The crossing of two F1 Spoodles is called F2, the crossing of two F2 Spoodles is called F3 and so on.
You might consider an F1 Spoodle to be the most desirable, but that’s not always the case. Indeed, it can be harder to predict personality and coat type in F1 Spoodles, which is why some Dog Owners opt for later generations.
Now, how about the “b” in F1 or F2 Spoodles? That suffix means that the doodle has been bred back with an early Spoodle or purebred Cocker Spaniel or Poodle. Often, breeders will cross a Spoodle with a Poodle to ensure more stability in the coat type. Because the “b” can refer to more than one option, it’s a good idea to ask a breeder more about the history of their breeding stock.
While breeding is a science, it’s not always a predictable one! Some later generation Spoodles will be born with a surprising amount of one parent breed. These so-called Throwback Dogs are just as lovable, even though they may not look the part of both of their parent breeds.
One final thing we should note here is there are two different kinds of Cocker Spaniels that can be used for the Spoodle. While you won’t find specific terminology for the difference, it’s worthwhile to ask a breeder whether they rely on the more laid-back American Cocker Spaniel or the active English cocker Spaniel.
Personality Traits ★
When it comes to the Spoodle, looks are not deceiving. These little puppers are really as sweet as they appear.
From their Cocker Spaniel background, Spoodles have inherited their gentleness, affection and friendliness. They get along with everyone, whether it’s furry friends at the dog park, the family cat, or rambunctious children. And with those adorable puppy dog eyes, don’t be surprised if this pup meets new dog-loving fans every time they leave the house. Their cuteness is simply irresistible.
The Spoodle has plenty of positive Poodle attributes, as well! Intelligence, curiosity and playfulness are traits that come from their curly-coated parent breed. And they make this dog fun-loving and spirited.
When it comes to their family members, Spoodles are affectionate and devoted. They never want to be far from their favourite humans, and would rather not be left alone for long periods of time. If you work out of the house or are planning a trip out of town, this people-loving pup will prefer to stay with a caring Pet Sitter. Adopting a second dog may also give the Spoodle some much-needed companionship.
While not necessarily high-strung, Spoodles do need a fair amount of attention and mental stimulation to prevent boredom and loneliness. Poodles and Cocker Spaniels are both low barking dogs, but the sensitive Spoodle may develop a howling habit if they’re feeling blue.
If you’re looking for a watchdog or protector, the Spoodle is probably not going to step up to the challenge. They’re not very territorial, and may whimper rather than ward off potential intruders. But, if you’re looking for a loving, gentle family pet, the Spoodle is your dog!
Spoodle Trainability & Training Tips
Both Cocker Spaniels and Poodles were originally bred for hunting, which is a boon for training. Spoodles are quick-witted and people-pleasing, making them fantastic students.
Here are a few training tips when working with a Spoodle:
- Start with short sessions. Spoodles are engaged and smart, but they can get overwhelmed with long training sessions. To start, keep training under ten minutes at a time and schedule in these short sessions throughout the day. Over time, your hard-working Spoodle will be able to stay focused for longer periods.
- Keep it positive. As a dog with a gentle soul, they don’t respond well to harsh training measures. Positive Reinforcement Training is best for the sensitive Spoodle and will make the process more efficient and enjoyable for the both of you.
- Work on confidence-building. As curious and outgoing as they are, these dogs sometimes lose their confidence when met with a grouchy dog or sudden loud noises outside. If your Spoodle seems to be nervous in certain situations, you’ll want to work on confidence-building training or desensitisation around their triggers.
- Know the signs of Small Dog Syndrome. In addition to some Spoodles developing nervousness, they can also be prone to Small Dog Syndrome. You might notice your dog becoming territorial about food, toys or furniture and even snapping when they feel threatened or anxious. While Spoodles may be less vulnerable to developing this disorder than other small breeds, it’s important to know the signs and work on proper socialisation from puppyhood.
- You may spend extra time on potty training. Depending on the size of your Spoodle, it’s possible that potty training may take a bit longer than with larger dogs. Small pups come with small bladders, so stay patient and consistent until your dog learns to do their business outside!
- Don’t stop at the basics. Spoodles are highly trainable pups, and will enjoy working on commands that go beyond the basics! The sky’s the limit with a smart dog like the Spoodle.
Exercise Needs & Living Conditions ⌂
Along with high trainability, the Spoodle’s hunting background also makes them active and energetic! These dogs are much more athletic than meets the eye, so it’s important to give them about a half hour to an hour of exercise per day. For the smaller Spoodles, you can adjust down to about a half hour per day, unless they do well with the extra adventure!
Not sure how to exercise this upbeat dog? Here are a few suggestions:
- Daily walks. No matter your Spoodle’s size, they’ll benefit from a few brisk walks per day. Walking is especially great exercise for small Spoodles who may be too tiny to engage in more strenuous activities. But it’s also a great low-impact activity to supplement a larger Spoodle’s more athletic endeavours. If you can’t be home to walk your dog daily, a friendly Dog Walker will be happy to take your Spoodle for a spin!
- Games of fetch. As traditional retrievers, these dogs adore a nice game of fetch. You can make this activity more athletic by playing fetch on a hillside or other challenging surface. Or, add in a mental challenge element by having your dog perform a trick before you throw the ball.
- Agility. It’s a joy to watch those luxurious Spoodle ears flop around as this dog speeds through an agility course. And, the focused exercise is a brilliant way to tire these doggos out.
- Water sports. Again, a Spoodle’s love of water harks back to their Poodle ancestry. Poodles are named after their love of splashing around in puddles, lakes, and rivers, so you can expect the Spoodle to be a water-lover as well. And given what a great workout water sports are for dogs, that’s a great thing for your dog’s health!
- Playtime with other dogs. Luckily, the Spoodle isn’t one to shun furry friends or develop aggression. So, a trip to the dog park is the perfect opportunity for exercise.
- Outdoor adventure. Even the largest Spoodles are conveniently travel-sized, and they have an outgoing personality that makes them an ideal adventure companion. Take them along for trips to the beach, mountains, or anywhere else and they’ll trot along by your side with a big Spoodle smile.
As active doggos, it’s important that these pups have access to a high quality dog meal plan.
Spoodle Grooming ✄
Because Poodles and Cocker Spaniels have different coat types, how you go about grooming your Spoodle will depend on which kind of fur they inherited.
If your Spoodle is more Cocker Spaniel than Poodle, they will likely have a straight or wavy fur coat. This fur type requires brushing every few days, as well as bathing about once every two or three months. A straight-coated Spoodle is not considered hypoallergenic and will shed a moderate amount.
For Spoodles who are more Poodle than Cocker Spaniel, your grooming regimen will be more closely related to that of other curly-coated doggos. This type of coat is more like hair than fur, and will require regular combing, bathing, and trimming. You can expect to bring your curly-coated Spoodle to the groomers about once every six weeks. This type of Spoodle is great for families who want a hypoallergenic dog.
For all types of Spoodle coats, you should trim the fur around their eyes for better visibility and wipe their faces with a dog-friendly wet wipe to prevent tear staining. And, because Spoodles tend to have heavy ears that don’t prevent air flow, they should be checked and cleaned every few days.
Monthly nail trimming and (ideally) daily tooth brushing round out the grooming needs for the Spoodle.
Spoodle Health +
Spoodles are a fairly popular breed, which can put them at risk for irresponsible breeding practices. If possible, make sure that your doggo-to-be comes from parents who have been screened for hip dysplasia and other genetic conditions. And, be on the lookout for:
- Skin allergies
- Patellar luxation
- Ear infections
While hybrid dogs tend to be quite healthy, Spoodle can sometimes be vulnerable to accidents, illnesses or injuries as they explore the outside world. Make sure to provide your dog with the best vet care with a dependable pet insurance plan.
Fun Fact ♥
Thanks to the wide variety of colours passed down from their Cocker Spaniel parent breed, Spoodles come in more colours and patterns than most doodle hybrids. Brown, golden, black, apricot, cream, merle, tri-colour, tuxedo, the list goes on!
Final Thoughts on the Spoodle
It’s easy to see why the Spoodle sparked our modern love of doodle hybrids. With an unbeatable personality, lively attitude, and let’s not forget, hypoallergenic, non-shedding coat, the Spoodle is the whole puppy package.
There are a few considerations for potential owners of this Poodle Cocker Spaniel mix. With their hunting background, they do need regular exercise and mental stimulation to be happy and well-adjusted. And, because of their people-loving personality, they may develop separation anxiety when left alone for long periods. Luckily, a friendly Pet Sitter can help keep them company while you’re away.
If you’re looking for a trainable, intelligent, family-friendly dog, look no further than the loveable Spoodle.