Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever: Which is right for you?

Dog lovers loyally confess to loving all dog breeds, while admitting that there’s something magnetic about Golden Retrievers. These smiley, golden creatures are like a ray of sunshine, bringing a smile to everyone who appreciates man’s best friend. 

But what about other mixed dog breeds? The Goldendoodle is part Golden Retriever, part Poodle. When you look at the Goldendoodle vs Golden Retriever, you might be wondering where they differ. 

We’re going to take a look to see just how the awesome Golden Retriever stacks up to the Goldendoodle, and which is right for you.

>>> If you’re looking for a new golden retriever puppy to join your family, take a look at our golden pups available from some of the top breeders in the country.

What is a Golden Retriever?

Certainly, the Golden Retriever is one of the more popular dog breeds in the United States. And why not? They’re beautiful, intelligent, energetic, and amicable. It’s exactly why this Scottish gundog makes such a great family pet. 

Golden Retriever History

Originating from the Scottish Highlands, the golden retriever was used as a hunting dog to retrieve birds. The person responsible for developing the breed was the first Lord of Tweedmouth, Dudley Majoribanks. He wanted a dog well suited to rugged terrain. 

To establish the breed as we know it today, he crossed the yellow retriever with some Irish setter, Bloodhound, Newfoundland, Springer spaniel, and others. The breed was recognized in 1925 by the American Kennel Club.

Modern Golden Retriever

Fondly referred to as ‘Goldens’, the puppies of modern Golden Retrievers are guaranteed to melt your heart. That wriggling, blonde teddy-bear bundle of sheer energy promises to be irresistible. Nobody can be blamed for squeezing a puppy just a little bit too hard. They’re made to be cuddled and petted non-stop. 

Their big paws, their gentle brown eyes, and their smiling faces are enough to make any dog lover looking for a pet, buy one on the spot.  As your gorgeous golden puppy grows, he’ll turn into a majestically handsome adult of 20 to 25 inches in height. 

The broad head and gentle brown eyes continuously search for their human owners. They’re medium to large dogs with a light golden to dark golden coat. The dense, water-repellent coat is fairly long with feathering on the chest, the legs, and the tail. 

The ears are floppy, silky, and medium-sized. He sheds quite a bit so when you look at the Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever you’ll appreciate the low shedding coat of the poodle.

Golden Retrievers Are The Third Most Popular Pet Breed

How do you know what dog breed is right for you? You look at how they are ranked in terms of popularity and look at the reasons that make them rank so well. In 2018 right up to the present date, the American Kennel Club has ranked the Golden Retriever at number 3. 

The dog is friendly, laid-back, protective, energetic, and beautiful. The list could actually be added to but nobody wants to give the golden retriever a swollen head. What he offers and brings to your home gets him a consistently high number 3 ranking. 

>>> Read more: Full price breakdown of how much a golden retriever costs.

What Is A Goldendoodle?

When looking for an awesome pet you may have your eyes set on a Goldendoodle. They aren’t purebred dogs and they aren’t recognized by the American Kennel Club as a breed of its own. 

Adding a 4-legged family member to your household can be darn difficult, especially when looking at the Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever as they both promise to make such fantastic pets. 

Goldendoodle History

The Goldendoodle is a designer breed that came about because of two beloved dog breeds – the Golden Retriever and the Poodle – being mated. Known fondly as the Golden Poo, the beautiful dog was first bred in 1969 by Monica Dickens.

There seems to be conflicting information as to whether the dog originated in Australia or Canada. 

Rise in popularity of Goldendoodles

Of course, when dog lovers first spotted the ball of golden curls on the Goldendoodle puppies, everybody wanted one, and the dog’s popularity soared. Goldendoodles aim to please. They’re super-social dogs and just love being around their humans.

They are extremely smart and can easily be trained. Like the Golden Retriever, they’re too friendly and welcoming to make good guard dogs. 

You can understand their rise in popularity as they’ve inherited the wonderful amicable personality of the golden retriever and the intelligence of the poodle. It’s not surprising then that the Goldendoodle rose in popularity from number 9 in 2020 to the top 5 in 2021. 

Goldendoodles make the most wonderful family pets and like the Golden Retriever are also sought after as therapy- or rescue dogs. They’re bright, outgoing alert, social, gentle, loving, and patient with kids. 

Goldendoodles Not Recognized As Their Own Breed

The Goldendoodle isn’t recognized as a standardized breed by any of the major kennel clubs. It doesn’t matter how popular he is, the Goldendoodle is a hybrid dog and therefore can’t be registered with national kennel clubs. 

Size & Appearance

The Goldendoodle is a medium-sized dog. He stands at roughly 14 to 22 inches in height. His coat is usually golden, cream, yellow, red and even leaning towards brown. 

Goldendoodles have many different sizes           

When you have a mixed-breed dog, often genetics will have a say about how the dog turns out. Nothing is set in stone with regards to his size,  as the Poodle can be a Toy, Miniature, or Standard-type dog. Your Goldendoodle could turn out to be small or medium-sized.

Coats Are Different

Cross-breeding can always give you unpredictable results. That’s the thing with a Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever. You know what you’re getting with a purebred Golden Retriever, but the Goldendoodle could have a straight, wavy, or curly coat. 

The coat is essentially medium length. When comparing the Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever, you have to bear in mind that the Goldendoodle will require having its coat professionally shorn. The Golden Retriever will just require a good brush of the silky coat twice a week. The Goldendoodle has medium length, floppy ears, and the tail is usually docked but these days it tends to be kept long. 

Goldendoodles Shed Much Less

Most Goldendoodles are low-shedding dogs. Even though they shed much less than what Golden Retrievers do, you can’t call them zero-shed dogs. They are therefore not hypoallergenic dogs. 

Personality & Temperament

Golden Retrievers and Goldendoodles are wonderfully social and friendly. They’re boisterous for sure and might accidentally knock over a small child. Their intention is to be gentle as they love children. 

Golden Retrievers Are More Loyal

Golden Retrievers are one of the most iconic breeds of dogs in America. They’ve got so many winning attributes. One of these is their devout loyalty. They bond with you from the time they are puppies and stay loyal to you right to the end of their days. 

There is pretty little that a Golden Retriever won’t do for you to show how much you mean to him.

Golden Retrievers Are More Relaxed

With the wonderful Golden Retriever personality, you can rely on a loving, gentle pet with very few faults. They’re calm and far more relaxed than the Goldendoodle. Just one look at that smiling face and you can see what a cool, laid-back character he is. 

Even though the Golden is inherently a calm, loving dog, let a young, impressionable puppy land in the wrong hands and the dog’s personality can be shaped to have bad characteristics. Then it’s the owner’s fault entirely.

A decent owner will ensure early socialization and training to ensure the Golden remains the delight it is known to be. When the Golden Retriever is raised correctly, it is a child’s best friend and a magnificent family companion. 

Goldendoodles Can Be Curious/Distracted

Goldendoodles are energetic dogs. If they don’t get enough exercise they can become bored and destructive. They can be too energetic as puppies and can become easily distracted during training. It is only when they are about 12-18 months of age that they start to calm down.

Browse Our Available Puppies
  • Image of Chic, a Golden Retriever puppy


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    Female February 19, 2024
    One or both of this puppy's parents have undergone genetic testing.
    One or both of this puppy's parents are hip certified.
    This puppy has had early neurological stimulation exercises.
    Learn About Chic
  • Image of Wendel, a Golden Retriever puppy


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    Male March 1, 2024
    One or both of this puppy's parents have undergone genetic testing.
    One or both of this puppy's parents are hip certified.
    One or both of this puppy's parents is OFA Heart certified.
    This puppy has had early neurological stimulation exercises.
    Learn About Wendel
  • Image of Jennie, a Golden Retriever puppy


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    Female March 9, 2024
    One or both of this puppy's parents have undergone genetic testing.
    One or both of this puppy's parents are hip certified.
    One or both of this puppy's parents is OFA Heart certified.
    This puppy has had early neurological stimulation exercises.
    Learn About Jennie
See All Our Puppies

Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re looking for a new family pet and you’re researching the Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever, what will sway you towards the one you choose?  After all, they’re both terrific dog breeds.

Which Breed Costs More? 

The price tag with these two dogs is much the same. As a designer dog, Goldendoodles can cost far more than Golden Retrievers up front, more so when people are looking for the Miniature type. Goldendoodles also require professional grooming and this can turn out to be quite costly. 

Which Is Better For Families? 

Everyone who has owned a Golden Retriever will say that they win hands down as the absolute best dogs for families. A Golden is such a devoted pet, depending on everyone in the family to return his love. 

Goldendoodles on the other hand also make excellent family pets but that poodle part in them makes them more independent. Choosing a dog like the Golden Retriever is such a wise choice as he simply slots into your family life as if they were part of your very bloodline. 

Which Breed Is Easier To Train?

As mentioned, when it comes to the Goldendoodle vs. Golden Retriever, they’re both highly intelligent dog breeds. Both can be trained. The Goldendoodle might be slightly more difficult to train because of his independence, his high energy, and his stubbornness. 

The Canine Training Association is distinguished by its outstanding instructors. The CTA for Golden Retrievers does a great job of training dogs. The Canine Training Association was established in 1950 and many dogs have benefited from the training that effectively corrects unwanted behavior in dogs. 

Which Breed Is Better?

Anybody who knows these dogs will tell you that the magnificent Golden Retriever takes the cake as the better pet. 

There’s nothing new and unpredictable with these friendly family pets. They’ve been around for decades, and when you choose your puppy from a reputable breeder like ours, you’ll know you’ve found your ray of sunshine. 

Galen has been connecting quality Golden Retriever breeders with loving families since 2012 and is the founder of My Golden Retriever Puppies. He and his wife have four children and love spending time together, traveling (lived oversees for 4 years), enjoying the outdoors and connecting Golden families.