The Cockapoo is a breed that stands out when it comes to loving and clever companion dogs. This crossbreed has captured the hearts of dog lovers all over the world by combining the best characteristics of the Cocker Spaniel and the Poodle.
In this article, we will look into the fascinating world of Cockapoos, from their history and characteristics to their usefulness as family pets. Whether you’re thinking about having a Cockapoo or just want to learn more about this adorable breed, keep reading to find out all you need to know.
What is a Cockapoo?
The Cockapoo, an attractive little dog with the disposition of a giant clown, may have been the first of the “designer dogs” (dogs that are not purebred), emerging in the 1960s rather than more recently.
These hybrid dogs can be found in shelters and rescues despite their sad position as a designer breed, so if you can, consider adopting one of them!
Origin and History of Cockapoo
One of the first and most well-known “designer crossbreeds” to emerge in the United States was the cockapoo, which dates back to the 1960s. The goal of the Cockapoo breed was to develop an intelligent, athletic, and non-shedding companion dog that needed less coat maintenance than other breeds of a comparable size.
There are breed clubs in the UK and throughout the world, however none of the international Kennel Clubs officially recognise the Cockapoo. Understanding the two breeds that make up the Cockapoo is necessary in order to comprehend the origins of the breed.
One of the most well-known and historically significant land spaniel breeds is the English Cocker Spaniel. It’s interesting to note that the Cocker and Springer Spaniels were categorised as “Land Spaniels” prior to the 1800s, despite the fact that their sizes made them ideal for completely different jobs. While the smaller ones were employed to flush out woodcock, the larger ones were used to “spring” game. With selective breeding, the two species’ differences grew even more pronounced, and in 1893, they were officially classified as two distinct breeds.
However, contrary to popular belief, the Standard Poodle was developed in Germany, not France. This bright and hardworking breed was developed as a water retrieving dog. Later, the Miniature and Toy Poodle breeds were developed for people who desired a poodle with all the charm and energy of the Standard Poodle but in a smaller package.
The Cockapoo can exhibit any mix of the traits from the two breeds in terms of temperament, looks, and behaviour.
Appearance and Size
The appearance of Cockapoo dogs can vary based on whether they are a first cross or have been mated with other Cockapoos because there are several breeds of the dog. Their coats typically have a spotty pattern and are available in golden or brown, as well as various blends of black, white, liver, red, blue, or orange. No matter what colours they are, they are all gorgeous little teddy bears.
Coat and Grooming Needs
Cockapoo puppies’ coats are difficult to anticipate because they could either inherit the Poodle coat or the Cocker Spaniel coat (or any combination of the two!). Thus, they may not shed or shed very little (as in the case of the Poodle coat), in which case they will need to be regularly trimmed, or they may shed (as in the case of the Spaniel coat), in which case they may or may not have an undercoat that is prone to matting.
As your Cockapoo’s coat develops, find a reliable local groomer who can either take care of it for you or show you how to do it yourself. Clipping a Cockapoo can be challenging and requires some practise. Be ready for any because they can range from minimal maintenance to high maintenance!
The importance of ear care should also be kept in mind when giving Cockapoos their regular grooming. Both breeds may experience issues with abundant ear hair and the risk of infections from extraneous objects getting into the ear canal.
Personality and Temperament
Like with most crossbreeds, a Cockapoo’s personality is influenced by its parents and how they were produced and raised.
The two breeds that make up the Cockapoo make it quite obvious that this is an active dog that requires a lot of activity and input (sometimes more than many new owners anticipate) and needs to be a member of the family. If the crossbreeding works out as planned, the Cockapoo will have the brains of both the Poodle and the Cocker Spaniel and the spirit of both, making it a superb companion.
When they are initially crossed (F1), the Cockapoo personality seems to be more consistent. As a line is progressively bred, they can either be bred back to one of the original breeds, strengthening the Spaniel or Poodle personalities, or they can be bred to another Cockapoo, which has a lower degree of predictability.
Training and Exercise Needs
If you want any chance of having a peaceful life, you’ll need to train this intelligent, industrious, and very active dog! Because both Cockapoo breeds are bright and enjoy working with their owners, training cockapoo puppies is a delight, but because they pick up bad habits just as quickly as good ones, reward-based training should begin early and continue over time. This breed is excellent for agility or even working as a pet gundog because they enjoy being active.
Always utilising positive, reward-based training techniques, it’s crucial to teach a Cockapoo to appreciate handling and grooming (as they will need a lot of it) and to cheerfully give up any prizes they may want to cling onto.
Given their past as working gundogs, they should be well-socialized with cats, with which they can learn to get along, but they should always be kept under close supervision around other small animals and birds.
Cockapoo Puppies for Sale
If you’re ready to start your search for a Cockapoo puppy, there are several places you can look.
A breeder is one of the most well-liked places to look for a Pomeranian-poodle mix puppy for sale. Do your research and locate a reputable breeder who is concerned about the health and welfare of their puppies. A reputable breeder will let you meet the puppy’s parents and will provide you copies of any certifications and health documents.
Cockapoo puppies may be available for purchase in some pet stores, but it’s important to exercise caution when doing so. Puppies are frequently purchased by pet shops from puppy mills, where the animals are frequently mistreated and maintained in subpar conditions. If you decide to purchase from a pet shop, be sure to enquire about the puppy’s lineage and medical history.
A wonderful approach to offer a furry buddy a second chance in life is to adopt a Cockapoo puppy. Ask if there are any Cockapoo pups up for adoption at your neighbourhood animal shelter or rescue group.
Training Tips for Cockapoo
They are intelligent and eager to please, making them easy to train with positive reinforcement techniques. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when training your Cockapoo:
- As soon as you bring your Cockapoo home, begin training them. The key is consistency, and early norms and boundary setting are crucial.Use positive reinforcement techniques, such as praise and treats, to encourage good behavior. Avoid using punishment or negative reinforcement, which can cause fear and anxiety in your dog.
- Training sessions should be brief, frequent, and singularly focused on one instruction or behaviour. This will lessen the likelihood of your Cockapoo getting overwhelmed or bored.
- Expose your Pomeranian poodle mix to a range of people, environments, and situations to help socialise them. They will feel more at ease and certain in unfamiliar circumstances as a result.
- Practise consistency and patience, and keep in mind that training is a lifelong process. Your Cockapoo can learn to be a well-mannered and obedient pet with practise and patience.
Common Health Problems
If you’re looking for a Cockapoo, it’s important to understand the concept of hybrid vigour. Inbreeding is the reverse of hybrid vigour, which happens when new blood is introduced from outside the typical breeding circle. Hybrid vigour is not always a trait of mixed breeds.
However, there is a widespread misperception that mixed breeds inherently fall under the umbrella of hybrid vigour. The kids won’t have hybrid vigour if the mixed breed’s genetic pool stays constant throughout time. Additionally, even though the puppies are purebred, if a purebred breeder introduces a dog from an unrelated line, the puppies will exhibit hybrid vigour.
Even while not all Cockapoos may contract one or more of these illnesses, it’s crucial to be aware of them if you’re thinking about getting one of these dogs.
- Cataracts: Cataracts result in opacity on the eye’s lens, impairing vision. The dog will appear to have hazy eyes. Cataracts typically develop as people age, and they occasionally need to be surgically removed to enhance vision.
- Patellar Luxation: also referred to as sliding stifles, is a disease that frequently affects little dogs. The kneecap is the patella. Anatomical parts that have been dislocated, such as a bone at a joint, are luxated. Patellar luxation is a painful condition in which the knee joint (typically of the back leg) moves in and out of place. Although many dogs with this illness live quite normal lives, it can be devastating.
- Hip Dysplasia: The thighbone does not fit securely into the hip joint due to this hereditary issue. Dogs can exhibit lameness and pain in one or both of their hind legs, although not all of them do. (X-ray screening is the most accurate method of issue diagnosis.) In either case, as the dog aged, arthritis might appear. If you’re buying a puppy, ask the breeder for documentation confirming the parents have had hip dysplasia testing and are healthy. Dogs with this condition shouldn’t be bred.
- Allergies: Dogs frequently suffer from allergies, and the Cockapoo is no exception. Food allergies are treated by removing particular foods from the dog’s diet. Contact allergies are brought on by a reaction to a substance applied topically, such as bedding, flea powders, dog shampoos, and other chemicals. Inhalant allergies are brought on by airborne allergens like pollen, dust, and mildew. The course of treatment depends on the underlying reason and may involve dietary changes, medication, and environmental modifications.
- Liver Disease: Both copper toxicosis (poisoning) and chronic active hepatitis are variants of this illness that are becoming more common in Cocker Spaniels. No one is certain at this time if either illness is inherited. Ask your Cockapoo breeder about the parent Cocker’s history of liver disease as you wait for more research in this area.
- Ear Infections: The Cockapoo may suffer from these conditions as a result of his floppy Cocker ears, which can collect moisture, dirt, and debris. The Cockapoo’s ears need to be examined and cleaned frequently. Inquire with your veterinarian about the best ear care solutions.
Find a reputable breeder who will provide you with the health clearances for both of your puppy’s parents if you are purchasing a puppy. Health certifications attest to a dog’s having undergone testing and being declared free of a specific ailment.
Expect to find health certificates from the Orthopaedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) for elbow dysplasia, von Willebrand’s disease, hypothyroidism, and hip dysplasia in Cockapoos, as well as certificates for thrombopathia from Auburn University and normal eyes from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF). You can visit the OFA website (offa.org) to validate health certifications.
Dogs under the age of two do not receive health certifications. That’s because some health issues don’t manifest themselves until a dog is fully mature. Because of this, it’s frequently advised to wait until dogs are two or three years old before breeding them.
Choosing the Right Cockapoo for You
If you’re interested in getting a Cockapoo, it’s important to choose the right dog for your lifestyle and personality. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a Cockapoo:
• Take into account your living situation: They may adapt and thrive in smaller homes or apartments, but they do need daily exercise and mental stimulation.
• Consider your degree of activity: They have moderate exercise requirements and love going for walks and playing. A Cockapoo might not be the greatest choice if you’re searching for a dog to go on walks with you or runs with you.
• Pick a trustworthy breeder: Doing business with a trustworthy breeder can help to ensure that your Cockapoo is healthy and socialised. Avoid purchasing from pet shops or internet marketplaces as these places frequently use subpar breeding techniques.
• Spend time with the puppy before adopting: By getting to know the puppy in advance of taking them home, you can decide whether they are a suitable fit for your family and way of life.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the best thing about owning a Cockapoo?
Generally, cockapoos are friendly, easy to train, energetic and intelligent dogs whose coats are reputed to be good for allergy sufferers. Cockapoos were first bred in the 1950s in the United States and are one of the oldest ‘hybrid’ dogs around.
Is it hard to take care of a Cockapoo?
Cockapoos are easy to train, and puppy training will help them grow up to be well-rounded, happy and obedient dogs. It’s important to socialise your puppy from a young age too, and to teach them to be left alone for short periods of times to avoid separation anxiety.
What to expect from a Cockapoo?
Cockapoos are bred more for temperament than for appearance, and they tend to inherit the sweet, loving and friendly natures common with both parent breeds. They are highly intelligent, easy to train and also typically inherit the poodle’s enthusiasm and tendency to be little jokers..
How do I keep my cockapoo happy?
In order to have a Calm and relaxed cockapoo it is important to include physical exercise and mental stimulation into their daily routines. Mental stimulation can include obedience, trick training, activity puzzles and Kong’s for example.
How loyal are Cockapoos?
Because the cockapoo is a hybrid dog, you’ll see a variety of different traits and personality types. But they’re all intelligent and loyal. Cockapoos typically have high energy levels, which means they’re fantastic fun around children of all ages and make a great family pet.