Training Our Friends, the Goldendoodles!
Athletic, energetic, and highly intelligent – these three qualities accurately describe the goldendoodle. While they are wonderful, these very qualities can make this popular breed a challenge for their owners. Our lovable goldendoodle clients need a LOT of exercise and mental stimulation. Our pet sitters care for quite a few goldendoodles in our pack, so we have recommendations and tips to offer based on experience.
TRAINING: Training is of vital importance for a breed as smart and energetic as the goldendoodle. Whether you make the bold commitment of doing it yourself and being consistent or choose to hire a professional, proper training keeps them engaged and stimulated. Our friend Dee Hoult, owner of Applause Your Paws training in Miami and a great trainer specializing in positive reinforcement techniques, says“the goldendoodle is comprised of two working breeds, both retrievers. Without being a hunting companion, this breed needs a job, and training is that job.” Too often, dog owners don’t take the time to give their dogs the job they crave, but Dee assures us it’s not as difficult as we might think. “Training should happen every day, even if for only 5 minutes.”
Which Training Method Is Best for Goldendoodles?
Dee recommends clicker training with food treats in general, or “for the play-motivated doodles you can use a toy like a tennis ball for training. Definitely reward based, positive training.” In our experience, goldendoodles are extremely playful, flighty, and somewhat stubborn, and need love and consistency. Our client Hooper responds very well to affection and loving tones in combination with his leash work.
Learning is a tiring act, even for dogs! Adding regular training to their routine, especially for our puppy friends, will give them a mental work-out as well. After their session you will notice your dog will seem more calm and relaxed. The combination of physical and mental challenges is a great way to exercise your goldendoodle. Dee recommends teaching several retrieval tasks because of their golden retriever mixed pedigree, which gives them a good retrieve drive.
*PUPPY SOCIALIZATION CLASSES. This great article on the ASPCA blog has an in depth explanation of why it is important to socialize your puppy, and we highly recommend reading it. In short, puppies have a small window of time in which they adapt to the world, and socializing them with people and other dogs during this time makes for a well-adjusted puppy which, in turn, becomes a good-natured, well behaved, and even-tempered dog.
There are many local resources for socialization. Applause Your Paws offers breed specific workshops once a month; they had a retriever workshop in May, which would be perfect for a goldendoodle. Whether you take them here, to the dog park, or to hang out with your sister’s friendly dogs, the point is to get any puppy used to being around other dogs and being handled by humans.
How have you trained your goldendoodle? Share your funny stories with us in the comments!