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The Designer Dog Craze . . .

Jul 21, 2016

Are they designer dogs . . . the best of both breeds . . . or just mutts?

OK . . . I need to qualify this right now . . . don’t be mad at me . . . I am just the messenger . . . and besides I am a dog so you can’t blame me!!!  

“I opened a Pandora’s box, that’s what I did. I released a Frankenstein”.  . . . said Wally Conron, the man who unleashed the designer dog craze.

When asked to help a couple in Hawaii to get a therapy dog for a woman with vision problems, whose husband had allergies, Conron came up with a solution, breeding his prize-winning Labrador to a prize-winning standard poodle. Poodles have a typically non-shedding coat which makes them better tolerated by people with allergies.

Out of the three puppies, Saliva and hair samples were sent to the client, and of the three, the client was not allergic to one of the pups, and so he bought it. The remaining puppies were cute, and Conron came up with the name Labradoodle as a marketing gimmick.

“I opened a Pandora’s box, that’s what I did. I released a Frankenstein. So many people are just breeding for the money. So many of these dogs have physical problems, and a lot of them are just crazy … Today I am internationally credited as the first person to breed the labradoodle. People ask me, ‘Aren’t you proud of yourself?’ I tell them, ‘No! Not in the slightest.’ I’ve done so much harm to pure breeding and made so many charlatans quite rich. I wonder, in my retirement, whether we bred a designer dog — or a disaster!”, said Conron.

Keep in mind, there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog, according to the American Lung Association, The Mayo Clinic, and allergy experts. Most of the allergic reactions to dogs are to their dander, not their fur. Dander is made up of skin cells, and a protein in the saliva, and urine, found on every dog . . . even hairless dogs. The fact that poodles don’t shed the way other dogs do does not mean they are hypoallergenic. It just means that they are better tolerated by most people that are allergic to dog dander. So if you are planning on buying a doodle because you think it is hypoallergenic, you might be disappointed.

What started as an attempt to meet a specific need and has become a monster that cannot be tamed. In a world of Goldendoodles, Labradoodles, Malipoos and Puggles, there are consequences. How many of these dogs, when they disappoint, will end up in shelters?

Now there are Maltipoos, shorkies, Rata paps, Cheagles, Pomachons, Bo dachs, Schweenies & Jackaranians. . . .  and the list is endless . . . !
Buyer beware . . . no quality breeder is going to sell dogs knowing that they will be cross bred for money. Yes, they are adorable and they have very cute names like Cock-a-shels, and come with a price tag of $1000+.

. . . But they are still mutts!


Don’t get me wrong . . . I love a good mutt . . . they seem to be heathier and suffer less from chronic and breed-specific illnesses that are found within many poorly bred or inbred pure-bred dogs.  But, suggesting you will end up with “the best of both breeds” is as silly as thinking if a musician marries a genius, that their children will all be musical geniuses. That’s not the way it works.


Check out the shelters and if you don’t find what you are looking for, go ahead and get the dog of your dreams . . . just know what you are getting and don’t be fooled by cute names and big price tags.


. . . OK . . . gotta go play!