Frequently Asked Questions

Puppy Application

This is your first step when you are ready to inquire about a puppy!

WHAT IS AN ORIGINAL AUSTRALIAN LABRADOODLE?


The Australian Labradoodle is different from all other labradoodles. In the early days, the Australian Labradoodle was simply a cross between a Labrador Retriever and a Standard Poodle. Dogs from this cross typically were bred to each other over future generations, whereby the Australian dogs are also know as "Multi-generational" Labradoodles. Then, in the late 1980's, Tegan Park and Rutland Manor, the two founders of the Australian Labradoodle as we know it today, began carefully infusing several other breeds into early generations of their Lab/Poodle crosses, to improve temperament, coat, conformation, and size. The infused breeds include Irish Water Spaniel as well as the American and English Cocker Spaniel. The resulting labradoodles subsequently have been bred to each other, continuing the multi-generational tradition. Today, Australian Labradoodles are wonderful, intelligent dogs with lush coats that are more reliably low to non-shedding and allergy friendly than other types of Labradoodles such as first generation Lab/Poodle crosses, or first generation crosses bred back to Poodles. Even when the other types of Labradoodles are bred on for generations, the result is not an Australian Labradoodle, as the attributes of the infused breeds were not included in their ancestry. -Information from the Australian Labradoodle Club of America




Why should I look for the Certified Australian Labradoodle Club or Associations?


The Australian Labradoodle breed clubs and associations recognizes that not all dogs identified as Australian Labradoodles are the real deal. The registration process is an effort to make clear the identification process available to those interested in purchasing a true Australian Labradoodle. Dogs that are awarded the certification and registration have lineage that is traced back to the Australian lines produced by the breed developers (Tegan Park and/or Rutland Manor), as well as generations of strict and thorough health testing.




Are Australian Labradoodles a Mix Breed?


​All registered breeds began as mixes of other breeds done purposefully to create a new breed with specific attributes desired.
The Australian Labradoodle encompasses the Labrador Retriever's athletic, well balanced conformation, and its sporty, water loving nature. Along with the Poodle's intelligence and wonderful non-shedding, allergy friendly coat.

Rutland Manor & Tegan Park in Australia are the founders of the Australian Labradoodle breed. These breeding research centers have infused a small amount of Cocker Spaniel and/or Irish Water Spaniel into some lines for development. Australian Labradoodles are known for their intellect, fun loving temperament, beauty and grace. They are certainly a new breed to be admired.




How Can I Ensure my Labradoodle is Non-shedding and Allergy Friendly?


To ensure that your Labradoodle puppy has a nonshedding (no undercoat), low odor, asthma & allergy friendly coat, make sure you invest in an Australian Labradoodle with a Multi-Generational linage, which means at least 3 generations back in the pedigree are Labradoodles (great grandparents are labradoodles) and not just a Labrador Retriever parent & Poodle parent which is also known as F1, F1B etc...
True Australian Labradoodles average 6-10 generations of labradoodles back in their pedigree that all originate from either Rutland Manor, Tegan Park, or Sunset Hills in Australia. Getting puppies certified through the Australian Labradoodle breed clubs helps ensure many generations of health-tested parents, as well as the strict requirements for all breeder members and their top-notch breeders.




What about early spay/neuter?


Early spay/neuter is one of the medical advances in the veterinary field that has had a huge impact on the number of unplanned puppies and kittens filling the animal shelters and SPCA’s. Unless a person is showing a dog in the conformation ring and/or breeding the dog, there is really no reason not to spay or neuter pet puppies. Most dogs are altered at or before six months of age, while they are still juvenile and have not had onset of adult hormones (testosterone and progesterone). But it does reduce the risk of certain cancers and it does reduce the risk of unwanted or unplanned puppies of uncertain parentage.




Which makes a better pet, a girl or a boy?


As per our spay/neuter contract, our Australian Labradoodles are spayed or neutered while they are young, therefore the differences between the sexes is minimal. The girls do not experience hormonal cycles and the boys never develop the testosterone-driven behaviors such as marking territory, lifting legs to pee or wandering in search of girl friends. Because these differences are eliminated with spay/neutering before sexual maturation, we recommend that families base their preference on personality and activity level rather than gender. It is more important that you have a dog that suits your lifestyle.




How should I groom our Labradoodle?


Labradoodles require frequent brushing if left long and infrequent baths. We use a slicker brush with our dogs and it is important to brush the coat right from the skin. We reccomend using a comb at least once per week if you leave your dog's coat long and making sure you line brush to make sure you don't miss any areas. Most mats are formed closer to the skin, so if you just brush the surface of the hair, you will miss the parts that really need attention. Also, some coat textures may require more brushing than others, and you will get to know what your own dog needs. In general, longer coats require more brushing than shorter coats. Frequent bathing will actually remove the natural oils from the coat, and so we most often will bath our dogs just with water unless they are really filthy from rolling in mud. Very often, if you brush them out after their coat dries, the dirt will just fall out without bathing. The doodle clip is different than a terrier, poodle or bichon cut. The tail is left long and flowing, the coat is clipped to one length on the body and the head is trimmed tidily but not ‘pouffed’ like a poodle. We shave the bum, in between the toes on the bottom of the feet, underneath the ears and the bridge of the nose, extending to the inside corners of the eyes. We ask our groomer to generally use an inch blade on the cheeks and under the chin, leaving the moustache area around the muzzle just a bit longer and scissors on the moustache area , ears and the bangs/top of the head. Most people will trim them two to four times a year, generally when the brushing becomes too much of a nuisance as the coat becomes longer. The one time you will likely want to do a short clip is when your dog loses its’ puppy coat and grows in its’ adult coat. It is the one time your pet labradoodle will actually shed a coat and it generally happens between 9 and 14months of age.




How long do Labradoodles live?


Labradoodles are relatively long lived as a breed and an average life expectancy is between 12 and 15 years. In general, smaller dogs live longer than larger dogs, and there are many factors that affect lifespan, such as diet with a high quality food, exercise, genetics, accidents and injury, etc




I live in a condo; is an Australian Labradoodle suited to that?


Yes, a miniature or a smaller medium sized Labradoodle can do very well in a condo or apartment lifestyle. Initial potty training will be a bit more work, as you will have to make numerous trips a day to your designated potty spot though, unless you choose to continue the litter box training that we do with our Labradoodle puppies. Some sort of daily walk will be essential if you live in a condo or an apartment.




How much exercise do Australian Labradoodles need?


Low to moderate. Your labradoodle will need a walk outside your yard or on a leash once or twice a day and pee breaks at least three times a day as an adult. They enjoy walking and being out and about, but are not a high-energy dog that NEEDS to have a 3 mile run. A stroll around the neighborhood will keep them happy. While they are well able to keep up if you go on a hike,they don’t require it. Tip: walk your dog in the morning before you leave for work and he will spend a lot of the day resting and will be calmer and less prone to finding their own amusements!
Some of the American Labradoodles may require more exercise than the Australian Labradoodles; there will be more variability for them with some being low to moderate and some being quite active.




Do you recommend crate training?


Yes we do. No puppy should be given the run of the house until he is completely trustworthy with his potty habits. Some puppies may take a few weeks while others a little longer. It all just depends on your ability to follow through with guiding your new companion and his own personality. Giving him his own crate or playpen to stay in comfortably when you cannot provide 100% of your attention only on him is the best way to prevent accidents from happening. We have a dog that sleeps next to our bed and others who prefer to hop in their cozy crate at night to sleep. Sleeping in the crate at night on a soft cushion ensures our younger dogs will not get into any trouble during the night and have a good night's sleep The crate or pen should be big enough for the dog to stand, turn around, and lay down in various positions comfortably. If a soft bed and safe chew toy is also added they will be even more comfortable and more readily relax in their space.




What is the temperament of a Labradoodle?


The Australian Labradoodle has a unique personality all of its own. They are people lovers, humanlike in their ability to comfort and communicate, very intelligent, definitely goofy, happy, strong athletes, your best friend.




Are they good with children?


Yes! We fell in love with this breed when our children were very young. Labradoodles by their nature are friendly, non-aggressive, loyal and loving. They make wonderful family pets. Young children should never be given the responsibility of training a puppy, and should be supervised when playing......for the puppy's sake as well as for the children's




What are the sizes of a Labradoodle?


Miniature range: Between 14 and 16 inches in height at wither, but not more than 17 inches. Medium range: Between 17 and 20 inches in height at wither, but not more than 21. Ideal size for a female is 17 to19 inches; for a male, 18 to 20 inches. We do not breed standards at this time but the Standard range is between 21 and 24 inches (53 to 63 centimeters) in height at wither, but not more than 25 inches




What type of testing is done on your Australian Labradoodles?


When you are getting an Australian Labradoodle through a breeder registered with the Australian Labradoodle Associations or Club, you are assured that dog has been through compulsory health testing. As the breed developed, the Breed Associations introduced a new of level compulsory health testing (hips, elbows, PRA eye, DNA parentage verification, DNA essential panel testing) requirements, previously unheard of in the pure-bred dog world. The Internet created access to a new level of information, which has led to more knowledgeable pet buyers. Testing was expensive and further increased the price of Labradoodles, but the newly educated public, via the internet, embraced, expected and encouraged this new level of responsible breeding via health testing.




Can we visit you and play with the puppies?


Short Answer: There IS a visitation day offer for each litter for the families on that list! This date will be sent out the the families on that litter list once the puppies are born. We no longer do visits outside these dates for a number of reasons. We are a small family breeder and strongly believe in a busy, and rich puppy curriculum with puppies raised inside our home. This means that we do not have a “facility” or “kennel” outside of our home that people can visit. Raising puppies alongside our family takes lots of careful planning, pitching in, and a tight schedule! We take every precaution to protect our puppies and dogs, and are just not set up like a kennel to accommodate visitors outside of our special family visitation date. All but one of our breeding dogs and hopeful prospects live in a cherished guardian home and not with us full-time. We appreciate your understanding of our protocol to run our small program to its potential, as well as the safety of our young puppies, dogs, puppy families, and our own family! The great solution that solves the general visitation dilemia is the modern ability to ​​ "visit' us online on our website, social media, as well as our reviews from past puppy families. We have videos and pictures of our puppies here, photos from our puppy families, and lots of opportunity to see where the litter is raised, socialized, and growing. This modern day solution helps with the many weekly inquiries we get about people wanting to visit, have their kids play with the puppies, spend time with us, visit our dogs and our "facility” which is actually just our cozy home. Many are interviewing breeders or want to meet out Australian Labraoodles, or "are trying to determine the right breed for us". Many older books and “What to do when buying a puppy” websites encourage buyers to do this, which is understandable, but also long before the luxury of modern conveniences to have a thorough look inside our program without physcially visiting. We are fortunate that our great reputation, dedication, and all that we do to go above-and-beyond has made our Australian Labradoodle puppies in high demand throughout the years. Our many happy families are a testament to the wonderful family members we've helped add to homes throughout the years.




What is your price and the process to purchase?


Please read our policies and purchasing process here!




What if I can't pick up my puppy on the scheduled go-home day?


Once puppies are born, you will know your puppy's go-home date. At that time you will need to decide if you are able to commit to the litter based on the go-home day. *When possible and with advance notice, we are more than happy to keep your puppy for $50 per day (we offer a 3 day grace period) after our go-home date until you are available to get him/her, as we continue to feed, positive-train, socialize, and love on your puppy. This extended-care fee will be added to the final price of your puppy. Please note, this option is in limited availability and is not always possible due to availability and family plans.




How can I get my puppy if I live in another state?


You can either fly to Detroit or Toledo airports and come to our home to pick up, or we can meet you at the airport. We also have a puppy nanny service available for about $500-$600. We charge an additional $100 for a round trip to deliver puppies to you or a flight nanny at the airport. We do not fly puppies alone in cargo. Please contact us for more information on this. It you fly in to take your puppy in-cabin with you, you will need to bring a crate/flight bag approved for in-cabin use by the airline of your choice. We can discuss these arrangements when your litter is born.




What should we do to prepare for a puppy?


We will send a weekly pupdate giving you tips and suggestions along the way. We have a reccommended suppy list HERE on our website as well. One of the biggest things we can suggest is to prepare a training plan! We highly reccommend a training program with our partners at Baxter & Bella (use discount code SOUTHMITTEN ). Puppies can be challenging but with lots of preparation and a proactive plan in place, it will make the puppy challenges all worth it when you have a well-trained dog! We also reccommend at least 2 in-person training classes with your puppy as well for socialization and live demonstration.