The Cockapoo’s playful and happy disposition means that he is now one of the most popular mixed breeds worldwide. He is found to be very engaging by young and elderly humans alike with his intelligent and vivacious nature.
The Cockapoo’s compact size makes him a fine apartment dog, but he is just as happy outdoors.
The Cocker Spaniel and Poodle cross-heritage of the Cockapoo makes him a highly trainable dog that excels at obedience and agility classes, but he is happiest when he’s with his family and does not like to be left alone for long periods.
This breed was first observed in the United States in the 1950s, when breeders sought to create a low-shedding but personable breed, and the product of their efforts was such a success that it has kept Cockapoos in homes for decades.
The Cockapoo was one of the first “designer” dog breeds. Although the designers had a goal in mind, it is not clear whether their creation was purposeful or a happy accident! Regardless, the Cockapoo has become a much-loved breed that fits into many lifestyles.
Being that they are “hybrids”, the Cockapoo is not a recognized dog breed in many national and international dog breed clubs, including The Kennel Club in the UK. However, many local breed clubs, such as The Cockapoo Club GB, have been established all over the world to ensure that Cockapoos are bred responsibly and so that puppies are healthier with less risk of developing any of the congenital and hereditary health concerns that affect their parent breeds.
A Beautiful and Unpredictable Package
Being that Cockapoos are a cross breed, they come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, with some puppies taking on more Poodle qualities, and others displaying more of the Cocker Spaniel aspects, whether physical or in temperament. Some puppies have the curlier fur of a Poodle, while others might have the straighter and longer Spaniel coat. It really does depend on the luck of the draw! Either way, these dogs are beautiful!
Cockapoos are small dogs, and most responsible breeders use Miniature rather than Toy Poodles to cross with the American or English Cocker Spaniels, to avoid the health issues commonly found in Toy Poodles. Although they are small, some are larger than others, depending on their parentage.
When it comes to colouring, Cockapoos can come in a variety of colours in addition to their varying coat types. The most common colours found in Cockapoo fur are:
- Black with spots
- Tan, beige, or buff
- Red - including auburn and apricot
- Brown - varying from light to dark
- Sable - with tipping and shading in black
- Merle- blue, brown, shades can be mixed with cream or white
- Beige with brown and grey markings
A Dazzling, Loving Personality
Cockapoos are needy but highly adaptable little pups and are known to be highly intelligent, loyal, and loving to their humans. Their intelligence is inherited from both of their parent breeds, with Poodles being among the brightest of all dog breeds, and Cocker Spaniels not being far behind. Sometimes both breeds can be too clever for their own good, and the Cockapoo surely knows how to use this to his advantage!
They are famous for their happy, fun-loving characteristics, and for being an absolute pleasure to have around. Cockapoos are happiest with human company and are at their best in homes where at least one person is around at all times. Cockapoos that are left alone for such long periods of time with little exercise or mental stimulation can get into all sorts of trouble. They can develop undesired behavioural issues and even separation anxiety, which can lead to destructive and excessive barking tendencies.
Cockapoos enjoy games with lots of interactivity with their human counterparts, and are known to be fast on their feet and very agile. Taking after their parent breeds, a tired Cockapoo is a well-behaved and docile dog and the best way to tire such a pup out is with lots of exercise, play, and mental stimulation. They enjoy all sorts of canine sports and will solve puzzles quicker than you can imagine.
For Their Health
Cockapoos tend to be a relatively healthy breed, with a lifespan of 14 to 18 years with proper care and a healthy diet, but as with any other breed, they are susceptible to health issues. Like most designer dog breeds, Cockapoos are susceptible to a few hereditary health issues frequently seen in both parent breeds.
We have a more detailed page on the subject, but here are a few key health issues that Cockapoos may develop.
- Luxating Patella
- Ear Problems
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Most of these health issues are preventable or treatable with consistent proper pet care of your Cockapoo.
Training, Training, Training!
With both parent breeds being high on the list of intelligence and trainability, Cockapoos are known to be very smart dogs. They love to please and this combination makes them highly trainable. With good, consistent training, these dogs can learn new things extremely quickly and will excel at many sports and tricks.
Due to their highly sensitive disposition, they do not respond well to harsh corrective measures or heavy-handed training methods. They respond very well to positive reinforcement and are very sensitive to tones of voice. It’s important to use high-quality treats as rewards so as not to lead to health issues later on.
Finding A Reputable Breeder
With the popularity of Cockapoos, it is no surprise to find that there is far from any shortage of Cockapoo breeders to choose from. It’s important to note that not all breeders are alike, however. There are irreputable breeders all over, and it’s vital to find one that takes care of its dogs. Check the Cockapoo Club GB for a list of reputable breeders!
Wherever you find your beloved Cockapoo, it will make a loving addition to your family!