What is a Sheepadoodle?
A sheepdog poodle mix is a designer dog breed that is a cross between a Standard Poodle and an Old English Sheepdog. They are famous for their soft, wavy, hypoallergenic coats and affectionate, intelligent, and playful personalities.
Their appearance and temperament can vary according to the traits they inherit from each parent breed. This article highlights everything you need to know about the Sheepdog Poodle mix and getting the best of both worlds.
Do Sheepadoodles Shed?
Sheepadoodles are typically low-shedding dogs, thanks to their Poodle genes. Poodles are famous for having a hypoallergenic coat that sheds very little, if at all.
On the other hand, Old English Sheepdogs are moderate to heavy shedders. Therefore, Sheepadoodles may inherit either of these coat types, and their shedding tendencies can vary depending on their inherited traits.
Sheepadoodles shed less than Old English Sheepdogs but more than some other low-shedding breeds like the Poodle. Some Sheepadoodles may shed a little bit, while others may not shed at all. Regular grooming, such as brushing and trimming, can help manage any shedding and keep their coat healthy and mat-free.
How Big Does the Sheepdog Poodle Mix Get?
The Sheepadoodle size can vary depending on the size of the Poodle and the Old English Sheepdog used in breeding.
Standard Sheepadoodles, a breed from a Standard Poodle and an Old English Sheepdog, can grow to about 50 to 80 pounds (22.6 to 36.2 kilograms) and 24 to 27 inches (60.9 to 68.5 centimeters) tall at the shoulder.
Miniature Sheepadoodles, a mix of a Miniature Poodle and an Old English Sheepdog, can grow to be about 25 to 45 pounds (11.3 to 20.4 kilograms) and 16 to 20 inches (40.6 to 50.8 centimeters) tall at the shoulder.
Toy Sheepadoodles, a breed from a Toy Poodle and an Old English Sheepdog, can grow to be about 10 to 20 pounds (4.5 to 9.07 kilograms) and 10 to 15 inches (25.4 to 38.1 centimeters) tall at the shoulder.
It’s important to note that size can also vary within each category based on the individual dog’s specific genetics. It’s best to consult with a reputable breeder to get the best information on the size and potential growth of a particular Sheepadoodle.
Things to Know Before Getting a Sheepadoodle
Sheepadoodle is a mixed-breed dog. Unlike their Old English Sheepdog or Poodle parents, they are not purebred animals.
Sheepadoodles often have a black-and-white color scheme, though they can also be all one color or, in rare instances, gray.
Sheepadoodles are frequently a fantastic option for allergy patients because this breed combination has little to no shed. You must brush two to three times per week and groom around every eight weeks.
For exercise, Sheepadoodles will require daily walks and fetch sessions. They must also play psychologically challenging games to keep these intelligent puppies from becoming destructive out of boredom.
The Sheepadoodle is a well-liked therapy and emotional support dog because of its capacity to connect with its owners emotionally. However, because of how much they depend on their owners, it can be challenging to leave them at home alone for extended periods; instead, they might need a dog walker or doggy daycare.
Sheepadoodles enjoy being around youngsters as much as they enjoy being around adults because they are affectionate and patient with them.
When exposed to other animals gradually, calmly, and at a young age, Sheepadoodles get along well. They are naturally gregarious and clever creatures who will appreciate the company of other home pets.
Color and Pattern of the Sheepadoodle Coat
Sheepadoodles often have a mix of black and white coloring at birth. As they age, the black can sometimes turn different shades of gray; they frequently inherit this feature from the Old English Sheepdog. Some of their black patches may eventually turn white or “clear” to white and vanish completely.
While some Sheepadoodles develop adult coats that look very different from what they did as puppies, others retain the same puppy-like colors and patterns. Depending on the characteristics acquired from their parents, some Sheepadoodles might be almost totally black or entirely white.
Black markings in the form of tuxedos, polka dots, abstract spots, patch eyes, masks, and many more distinctive markings are examples of coat patterns.
There is constantly a wide diversity in every Sheepadoodle litter. Sheepadoodles can also come in cream, brown, and red colors or with hints of those colors, though this is less typical.
Sheepadoodle coats vary from straight to curly fur. Some may have coats that closely resemble the Old English Sheepdog’s straight, fluffy hair, while others may have kinkier hair that more closely resembles a Poodle. A Sheepadoodle bred for the best coat typically has thick, wavy hair, giving them that impossible-to-resist stuffed animal appeal.
Breed Personality and Temperament
Most admirers of Sheepadoodles praise their charming and energetic personalities. They’ll appreciate cuddling up next to you on the couch just as much as they’d like to take a vigorous walk outside.
Some Sheepadoodles may inherit their Old English Sheepdog parent’s herding instinct and will require plenty of outdoor playtimes to release their pent-up energy. They are active and like swimming, retrieving, and learning new skills to wow their owners. Despite being people-friendly, they make excellent guard dogs for their homes and are incredibly loyal dogs.
Sheepadoodle puppies can be a little rowdy and must get proper training from a young age. The Sheepadoodle is simple to train because Poodles and Old English Sheepdogs are popularly clever breeds.
They respond well to praise and treats given as rewards. These attentive dogs will also enjoy learning various tricks, especially considering how much cerebral stimulation they require.
The Sheepadoodle is a loyal friend and a well-liked therapy and emotional support dog due to its ability to connect with its owners emotionally. They are friendly to kids and adults and will fit in well with any family.
It’s challenging to leave your Sheepadoodle home alone for extended periods because of how much they depend on their owners, and they might need a dog walker or doggie daycare.
Sheepadoodle Personality and Temperament: Pros
The intelligence of Sheepadoodles comes from both their Old English Sheepdog and Poodle parents. Because of their high cognitive levels, teaching this hybrid usually goes relatively smoothly. They pick things up quickly and strongly desire to please their owners.
However, enormous power entails great responsibility. Sheepadoodles are extremely intelligent, which makes them one of the best breeds for temperament. However, it also means that your dog needs constant mental stimulation. If not, your Sheepadoodle can become bored, eventually resulting in undesirable and even destructive behaviors.
Because of this, every Sheepadoodle owner should ensure their dog has many opportunities to use all of their abilities. You should start early training as soon as you get it home. Ensure they can interact with people of all ages and other animals. Additionally, you should play interactive activities with your dog and teach them new tricks and etiquette.
Their high energy level is one of the best characteristics of the Sheepadoodle disposition. The Sheepadoodle does not exhibit the same laziness or preference for lying on the couch as some larger Poodles do.
Sheepadoodles are passionate about anything athletic. Consider activities like swimming, fetching, running, and much more. Sheepadoodles make excellent companions for people who lead active lifestyles because of their high activity levels. This breed needs daily exercise and will gladly accompany you on numerous outdoor adventures.
Sheepadoodles need to exercise frequently, which is unsurprising. Their Poodle progenitors initially got bred for waterfowl hunting, and Old English Sheepdogs were bred for herding livestock.
Protective, Affectionate, and Attentive
They have a very affectionate, caring, and protective demeanor, another incredibly desirable quality in a dog. They frequently develop strong protective instincts for their people, especially the young.
After a full day of fun and walks, these huge, energetic dogs prefer nothing more than curling up on the couch with you. The Sheepadoodle has also gained popularity as a therapy and service dog breed. They connect with people so easily.
Sheepadoodles are also naturally watchful, so they often watch for odd movements in the house. You won’t have to deal with a yappy dog when your neighbor removes the garbage, as they typically don’t bark much. However, a lot will rely on your dog and its particular personality. Some dogs are simply louder than others!
Sheepadoodle Personality and Temperament: Cons
Nipping and Herding
The tendency to herd sheep and other animals nearby, especially if they are not ‘full-sized’ like adult humans, is one of the Sheepadoodle characteristics that the Old English Sheepdog has heavily influenced. Even if it initially seems amusing and sweet, it may develop into a problem if managed improperly.
One of the ‘techniques’ that Sheepdogs use to herd sheep is nipping. Therefore, if your dog inherits this feature, it may tend to herd and bite young children and other household pets.
With proper training and early socialization, you can stop your Sheepadoodle from herding and nipping, just like other undesirable behaviors. Naturally, if they have a problem, you should never leave your dog alone with other pets or children in the house.
The Sheepadoodle is a friendly and extroverted breed that tends to bond quickly with its family. These puppies may frequently experience separation anxiety as a result. Despite how adorable and cuddly they are, separation anxiety will still put a lot of strain on your dog.
A dog with separation anxiety may cry when you leave the house. Others start messing around the house, while others lose their appetite or become destructive. This shouldn’t cause you any worries since you can easily control separation anxiety.
Sheepadoodles are not the best choice for owners who must leave their pets alone for extended periods, though, as they are prone to acquiring this issue. One household member should stay in, if possible, while the others go out. Alternatively, you may commit to paying for a dog walker or pet sitter.
Sheepadoodles are infamous for chewing on everything they come across, which is another prevalent problem with their disposition. You should begin teaching your dog appropriate manners early, just like you would with any behavioral issue.
However, it’s not improbable that a Sheepadoodle may pick up this undesirable habit once more throughout their adolescent years. Dogs often ‘unlearn’ the manners and behaviors you’ve taught them during adolescence. But if you remain firm and consistent, this issue should go away on its own.
Ultimately, you can resolve those behavioral problems with the proper training methods. So, if you’re having trouble with a mouthy Sheepadoodle, we advise you to get a qualified dog trainer or try an online school for puppies.
Although we mentioned the Sheepadoodle’s high energy level as an advantage, many dog owners may view it as a con, mostly because Sheepadoodles require regular exercise beyond the typical once-daily stroll around the block.
Because of this, the Sheepadoodle might not be the greatest option for folks searching for a really laid-back, relaxed dog that doesn’t need much activity. In fact, your Sheepadoodle may exhibit destructive tendencies and even separation anxiety if they don’t get the necessary amount of exercise.
And as we just discussed, mental and physical stimulation is crucial. A Sheepadoodle must have both to flourish and lead the fullest life possible.
Not Suitable for Apartments
Finding a dog as ideal as the Sheepadoodle is challenging. They’re the most wonderful companions someone could want because they’re so fluffy and adorable. Unfortunately, Sheepadoodles are not the best pets for individuals who live in apartments due to their large size and high energy level.
Above all, you’ll want to ensure your pet can live comfortably in your home and flourish there. Furthermore, while many smaller Doodles can live well in apartments, Sheepadoodles would thrive better in a larger household. Ideally, with a fenced yard so they have plenty of space to play and run around.
However, because the Sheepadoodle is such a loving crossbreed, we strongly discourage constantly letting your dog live outside. Instead, your dog should be inside your home with you and have access to a secure backyard where they can play.
Origins and History
The Sheepadoodle is a relatively new mixed breed that originated in the United States in the late 20th century. The breed crosses the Standard Poodle with the Old English Sheepdog to create a dog with a hypoallergenic coat that is also friendly and intelligent.
The Poodle, originally bred as a hunting dog in Germany, has been around for centuries. The Old English Sheepdog, also known as the OES, is a native British breed initially bred as a herding dog.
The exact origins of the Sheepadoodle are unclear, but it first appeared in the United States in the 1990s. Since then, the breed has grown in popularity and is now well-known by various dog clubs and organizations.
The Sheepadoodle is a designer dog breed, breeding two purebred dogs to produce a mixed breed with desired traits. While some people criticize designer dog breeds, others appreciate the unique characteristics and personalities that can result from such breeding.
As with any breed, it’s essential to research and understand the characteristics and needs of the Sheepadoodle before deciding to bring one into your home.
The Poodle Sheepdog Mix’s Exercise Requirements
Although predicting this cross’s exercise requirements is challenging, you can typically anticipate a dog with medium to high activity levels. The Poodle is a lively working dog that thrives when given a task to complete and enjoys training and stimulating its active mind.
A working dog at heart, the Old English Sheepdog is more relaxed but still proactive and clownish. Therefore, the Sheepadoodle will require one to two hours of daily exercise. However, they also enjoy training, spending time in the garden, and playing with their owner.
Because of their thick coats, which can survive the cold, Old English Sheepdogs do not perform well in the summer heat. Exercising them first thing in the morning and last thing in the evening when the sun sets may be necessary.
Usually, Sheepadoodles are large dogs that thrive in homes with fenced yards unless you choose a mini or toy mix. If you live in an apartment, get prepared to exercise your Sheepadoodle regularly.
Because they are energetic dogs, Sheepadoodles need exercise for their health and welfare. You can bring your dog along for walks around the neighborhood, hikes through the woods, and other daily activities.
Playing a nice game of throw-and-fetch with a ball launcher is a terrific way to exercise. A playdate in a fenced field would be a wonderful opportunity for your Sheepadoodle to meet new people and get some exercise if they get along well with other dogs.
Furthermore, even if your Sheepadoodle enjoys splashing through some water, you should stick to “land-based play” because cleaning up after swimming can take a while. Ask your breeder and veterinarian for guidance on how much exercise your Sheepadoodle puppies will require as they grow.
Space, Care, Nutrition, and Feeding Requirements
Sheepadoodles require adequate space, proper nutrition, and a healthy feeding schedule to ensure they grow and thrive.
Sheepadoodles are active dogs that enjoy running and playing. This breed is not for you if you live in a small area without any proper space or nearby parks for the dog to run around. Since they require space to explore and exercise, you might find it challenging to give your dog the right amount of exercise they need.
Nonetheless, they can adapt to living in smaller spaces with enough exercise and playtime.
Undoubtedly, no dog is entirely hypoallergenic; Sheepadoodles have a very low-shedding coat. For this reason, those allergic to dogs may find this breed an excellent fit. Therefore, you should brush your Sheepadoodle frequently during the week. Take them in for baths and nail trimming every 8 to 12 weeks to keep their coat in excellent condition.
Additionally, you should frequently wipe their ears of wax and dirt and trim their nails like any other dog breed.
Since Sheepadoodles have thick coats, ideal dogs for cold weather, you can clip their fur a little shorter and ensure they have access to cool, water-filled interior spaces where they can unwind.
Sheepadoodles require balanced and nutritious diets to maintain their health and energy. High-quality dog food appropriate for their size, age, and activity level is ideal. Owners can consult with their veterinarian or breeder to determine the best diet for their Sheepadoodle.
It’s also essential to monitor their food intake to prevent overfeeding and obesity, which can lead to health issues.
Sheepadoodles should feed two to three small meals daily to prevent overeating and indigestion. Puppies may require more frequent feedings. Owners should always provide fresh water and monitor their Sheepadoodle’s weight to ensure they are getting enough food but not becoming overweight.
Give treats in moderation, but do not exceed 10% of their daily caloric intake. Providing Sheepadoodles with enough space, a balanced and nutritious diet, and a healthy feeding schedule is crucial for their overall health and well-being.
Grooming and Training a Sheepadoodle
It is challenging to determine what type of coat the Sheepadoodle will have because they could inherit an Old English-style thick coat or a Poodle coat (or any hybrid of the two). If they inherit the Poodle coat, they might not shed at all or only moderately, in which case they will need frequent trimming.
Although the Poodle influences the Sheepadoodle, Old English Sheepdogs are susceptible to matting unless the fur is well-cared for and groomed daily. Locate a reliable local groomer who can care for your Sheepadoodle’s coat or show you how to do it yourself as their coat grows. Be ready for either because they range from moderately high to high maintenance.
Dog ear care is crucial because Poodles may experience issues with too much hair inside the ears, which can result in infections or aching ears.
Because they are a large breed, you will need to train them so that you can walk them on a leash without difficulty and be sure they will return to you when you call. Additionally, they must learn to control their enthusiasm so they don’t bump into people or jump up at them.
To ensure they are comfortable with humans and other dogs, Sheepadoodles require extensive early and ongoing socialization. Both of the breeds are intelligent and easy to train. They can perform well in training sessions and love working with their owner.
Because the two breeds that make up the Sheepadoodle are so owner-focused, training and handling should always be encouraging and motivational. A Sheepadoodle needs training to like handling and grooming because they will require a lot of it.
It would be best to start your Sheepadoodle puppy’s training with positive reinforcement as soon as it arrives home. It’s crucial to begin training your Sheepadoodle while considering its future as an adult dog. Don’t let your puppy do anything you wouldn’t want a 90-pound (40-kilogram) Sheepadoodle doing a year from now.
Health Concerns Relating to the Sheepdog Poodle Mix
As a mixed breed, the Sheepadoodle can inherit health issues from both parent breeds. However, hybrid vigor may also reduce the risk of certain genetic health problems. Some potential health concerns for Sheepadoodles include:
- Hip Dysplasia: This is a common orthopedic condition in dogs where the hip joint doesn’t develop well and can lead to arthritis and pain.
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA): This genetic disease affects the eye’s retina, causing gradual vision loss.
- Ear Infections: Sheepadoodles have floppy ears, which can harbor moisture and increase the risk of ear infections.
- Bloat: Sheepadoodles, like many other large dog breeds, can be prone to bloat, a potentially life-threatening condition in which the stomach fills with gas and twists.
- Epilepsy: This is a neurological disorder that can cause seizures in dogs.
It’s important to note that not all Sheepadoodles will develop these conditions, and regular veterinary check-ups and preventative care can help to catch any potential health problems early on. When considering getting a Sheepadoodle, finding a reputable breeder who performs health checks on their breeding stock and screens for genetic health issues is essential.
Other Pets And Children
The Sheepadoodle has a herding mentality because they are an interbreed with Old English Sheepdogs. Also, they are well known to playfully nip at kids’ heels to “herd” them. They enjoy being around youngsters just as much as they enjoy being around adults because they are kind and patient with them.
Even though Sheepdog Poodles are loving, kids should still learn to behave around animals. Having said that, kids accustomed to handling canines will adore having these vivacious puppies as friends.
Sheepadoodles get along perfectly with other pets if introduced to them gradually, politely, and at a young age. They are naturally gregarious and clever creatures who will appreciate the company of other home pets.
It depends on early training, interactions with others, and your dog’s personality because Sheepadoodles typically get along quite well with other dogs or cats in their homes.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Size Do Sheepadoodles Typically Grow to?
Sheepadoodles can vary in size, depending on the size of their Poodle parent. They range from small to large, with some reaching up to 27 inches (68.5 centimeters) in height and weighing up to 80 pounds (36.2 kilograms).
What Kind of Temperament Do Sheepadoodles Have?
Sheepadoodles are intelligent, loyal, and playful dogs. They tend to be affectionate and good with children and other pets but may act reserved with strangers.
Are Sheepadoodles Hypoallergenic?
Sheepadoodles are often popular as hypoallergenic due to the Poodle parent’s hypoallergenic coat. However, the degree of hypoallergenic qualities may vary from dog to dog, and some may still trigger allergies in sensitive individuals.
Are Sheepadoodles Good With Strangers?
Because they are social dogs, Sheepadoodles typically get along with everyone. Early socialization is essential for developing goodwill toward strangers. As previously indicated, you should socialize your puppy with people of diverse ages and sizes as soon as possible.
When your dog is all grown up, you’ll have a lot easier time running into strangers on your daily walks because this helps your pooch get used to all kinds of people. Sheepadoodles tend to adore everyone they meet if properly socialized.
Sheepadoodles, on the other hand, can occasionally be a little suspicious of strangers because of their protective instincts. Your dog could need some time to become used to meeting new people. However, Sheepadoodles often aren’t hostile to strangers and aren’t overly fussy when they meet new people.
Do Sheepadoodles Require a Lot of Grooming?
Yes, Sheepadoodles require regular grooming to maintain their curly coat and prevent matting. Brushing, trimming, and occasional bathing are necessary to keep their coat healthy and clean.
How Often Should My Sheepadoodle Exercise?
Sheepadoodles require numerous workouts. It will take a Sheepadoodle roughly two hours of exercise each day. The activities can include a combination of walking, running, and playing ball outside in the yard.
If you do not give your Sheepadoodle adequate exercise, you will notice issues with their behavior. They’ll act out or be hyper; they might even jump on people. If they don’t get enough playtime during the day, they might never learn to relax at night and fall asleep.
Your Sheepadoodle should run around and play even though it is also beneficial for them to wander around and explore. When you have a Sheepadoodle, you must make fitness your daily routine. Ensure you try to do more than just let the dog out in the yard.
What Kind of Exercise Do Sheepadoodles Need?
Sheepadoodles require regular exercise to keep them healthy and happy. They enjoy walks, runs, and playtime, but their exercise needs vary depending on their size and energy level.
What is the Lifespan Of a Sheepadoodle?
Sheepadoodles can live up to 12-15 years with proper care and nutrition.
Are Sheepadoodles Easy to Train?
Yes, Sheepadoodles are popular for being intelligent and trainable. They generally respond well to positive reinforcement techniques and can thrive in obedience and agility training.
Are Sheepadoodles Good Family Dogs?
Yes, Sheepadoodles make great family dogs due to their affectionate and playful nature. They relate well with children and other pets and are loyal companions.
Are Sheepadoodles Prone to Any Health Problems?
Like all dogs, Sheepadoodles can be prone to specific health problems, such as hip dysplasia, skin allergies, and eye problems. However, you can decrease the chance of health problems that are more likely to affect a Sheepadoodle through crossbreeding properly bred Sheepadoodle. This process is often referred to as “hybrid vigor.”
This, however, does not imply that they are immune to health issues; any dog might experience health problems as they get older. A Sheepadoodle will live as long and healthily as possible with regular visits to the vet, healthy food, and regular exercise.
The Sheepadoodle is a wonderful dog to be around, and everyone in the family will get charmed by their intelligence and attractive looks. The Standard Poodle and the Old English Sheepdog, two friendly and lively dog breeds that combine to create the Sheepadoodle, impart many positive characteristics to the young Sheepadoodle.
This cross aims to produce an Old English Sheepdog variety that doesn’t shed and possesses Poodle traits. Although it happens less frequently, you can use a Miniature Poodle to generate a smaller dog breed.
There are variations in size, shape, coat kinds, and temperament according to how you breed them. The Sheepadoodle can theoretically result from a first cross (with one Old English Sheepdog parent and one Poodle parent), bred back to one of the original breeds, or created by mating two Sheepadoodles.
Since this is a reasonably uncommon cross (often just a first cross), there is little more uniformity in size, shape, and temperament. However, the breeder will determine this, so be on the lookout for individuals that responsibly breed them and ensure all parents have health tests.