Cockapoo – The Out-Going, Happy & Playful Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

Cockapoo Feature

Becoming one of the most popular designer dogs, the Cockapoo combines the energy and personality of a Cocker Spaniel with the low-shedding, more allergy-friendly coat of the Poodle.

The result is a small-medium sized dog, who is super-adaptable and cute!

They are agile enough to swim, chase and hike, but affectionate enough to curl up on your lap while you’re enjoying a coffee.

Cockapoos are found in a range of colors and patterns – it really does depend on their parents. One thing you will instantly recognize is their curly coat and their teddy bear face!

They are usually smart, outgoing and happy dogs.

Gaining their confidence from their Spaniel parent and intelligence from their Poodle, busy family homes are perfect for these guys.

Thanks to their designer breed status, they are most at risk of being raised in puppy farms.

If you want to learn more about this popular pooch, we have got all you need to know about this sweet and loving companion.

What Is A Cockapoo?

What Is A Cockapoo?

The Cockapoo is a result of mating a Cocker Spaniel (American or English) with a Poodle (Toy or Miniature).

Although it is unclear when the first Cockapoo was bred, it is thought to be as early as the 1950s.

More recently, the increase in Cockapoo dogs has been largely thanks to their lower-shedding and more allergy-friendly coats.

Whilst some Cockapoos do have jobs to do, like Dennis the Therapy Dog, they were originally bred to be companion dogs.

A Cockapoo can have any or all of the characteristics of one or both of its parents, so let’s take a look at the parents in a little more detail:

Cocker Spaniel
Cocker Spaniel

For this mix breed, the parent can be either an American Cocker or an English Cocker.

Originally bred as hunting dogs (specifically gun dogs) they follow their nose to flush birds into the air to be shot.

They are sweet and super-intelligent.

Suitable for families because, they are easy to train, but they can be sensitive, so positive training methods are a must.

Their sensitivity does lend them to suffer with separation anxiety, so this is potentially where the Cockapoo gets it from.

Poodle
Toy Poodle

The Cockapoo parent can be either a Toy or Miniature poodle (this often depends on the size of the Cocker being used).

Ranked as the second most intelligent dog behind the Collie.

They are energetic and sociable. Poodles will not suffer fools, needing high levels of stimulation and interaction.

Whilst their coats are touted as hypoallergenic, you must take it at its truest definition.

Hypoallergenic means relatively unlikely to cause an allergic reaction. Poodle coats can still cause allergic reactions. Hypoallergenic means less likely (not none).

Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix
When we cross the Spaniel with the Poodle, we generally end up with a smart, sociable and energetic dog who doesn’t shed too much!

However, being a crossbreed, you can never be entirely sure of the characteristics of a first-generation puppy.

They may be more Cocker than Poodle or vice versa.

Subsequent generations are often more predictable, for example, mating two Cockapoo dogs together.

Kennel Club Recognition and Pedigree

Not being a purebred dog, the Cockapoo is not recognized by any of the major Kennel Clubs like The Kennel Club, The American Kennel Club, The United Kennel Club or The Canadian Kennel Club

In response, the American Cockapoo Club (ACC) was started.

The ACC has a list of registered breeders and subsequently will register their puppies keeping a record of officially recognized Cockapoos.

Breeders must abide by a code of ethics and also produce puppies in line with their breed standard. The Club’s purpose is to promote the breed and support both breeders and owners.

If you would like to rescue a Cockapoo, there are a range of organizations who may be able to help.

Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix Wiki
Size 10-15 inches (for males and females)
Weight 12-24 lb (for males and females)
Lifespan 14-18 years
Breed Type Mixes and More
Purpose Companion
Suitable For Active Families
Color Variations Red, Apricot, Brown, Chocolate, Tan, Black, Merle
Temperament Out-Going, Happy, Playful, Intelligent, Forgiving
Other Names Spoodle, Cockerdoodle, Cockapoodle, Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

Free Guide: Get Our Cockapoo Dog Breed eBook To Find Out Everything About This Dog.

Cockapoo Puppies

Cockapoo Puppy

Did you know the Toy Poodle has the smallest litter size of all dog breeds?

For that reason, the Toy Poodle should always be the father and the Cocker the mother.

Litter size varies, however usually it is between 4-8 puppies.

The Cocker will generally always be bigger than the Poodle, so this prevents any mating and birth complications!

Generally, when a Miniature Poodle is used, it’s not such an issue which parent is which.

This dog does carry a premium price tag, with Cockapoo puppies costing anywhere upwards of $800. Some have been known to sell for $2000.

A Miniature Poodle parent will produce slightly bigger puppies than a Toy parent would.

Equally, the English Cocker would produce slightly bigger puppies than an American Cocker.

Their weight can vary massively, but as a guide, a Cockapoo full grown will be somewhere between 12-24 pounds. Your Cockapoo will be fully matured at around 12 months of age.

Cockapoo Temperament

Characteristic Rating
Friendliness
Confidence
Protectiveness
Prey Drive
Social Tendencies

The Cockapoo is a super-energetic; he loves to play.

They will hike, swim, retrieve. You name it, they’ll do it. They love their people and will do anything you ask them to.

If you are interested in obedience, agility or flyball, you couldn’t want a better partner. Providing you figure out what they will work for, they are super-easy to train.

They will bark, to alert you to something is out of place or simply because they are bored. Sometimes a Cockapoo will bark excessively through excitement too.

Not surprisingly, with a hunter parent, the Cockapoo does have a prey drive.

If they spot that squirrel, they’ll be off! Being super smart, recall training isn’t usually an issue, but it is certainly fallible when something small and furry runs past.

Whilst they weren’t bred to be aggressive, and are not generally known for being so, poor breeding coupled with a lack of socialization and training can result in unwanted behaviors.

The more sensitive side of the Spaniel can come through and if not understood and managed can result in fear driven aggression.

It is worth being aware of rage syndrome, although rare, it has been associated with Cockers.

This is when a Spaniel will suddenly attack without any prior warning. It is more common in males and in solid color spaniels. If a Cocker was predisposed to the condition and they were then bred from to produce a Cockapoo, then your dog might have this condition too.

Compatibility with Families

Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

With early and continued socialization and training, they are generally friendly and sociable.

They will tolerate other pets, children and even strangers in the street.

The important thing is exposure from a young age, if you want any dog to learn that something or someone shouldn’t be feared, you must show them that.

It goes without saying, but interactions between children and dogs should always be closely monitored.

Even the world’s friendliest dog will have a limit.

Teach your kids how to pet dogs, how to read their body language and how they need space too.

Help them build their relationship through play, but also show them how to figure out when their dog has had enough and it’s time to have some space.

Cockapoo Personality

On the whole, the Cockapoo is a friendly, sociable and happy-go-lucky dog. They thrive in active homes where there is always something going on.

The intelligence from the Poodle combined with the energy from the Cocker gives you this perfect companion for any adventure.

Cockapoos can get bored incredibly easily, they can become excessive barkers and destructive.

Whilst they are popular family dogs, they aren’t the easiest to manage so we wouldn’t advise them for first time owners.

When raised correctly and with enough stimulation, the Cockapoo is eager-to-please, trainable, energetic, playful and sociable.

Cockapoo Size, Appearance and Grooming

Cockapoo Portrait

Cockapoo Full Grown

They are classed as small-to-medium sized dogs (depending on whether the parent is a Toy or Miniature Poodle).

Although they can vary significantly in size, they tend to be around 12-24 pounds in weight and stand between 10-15” in height.

Cockapoo Appearance

A Cockapoo should be sturdy, and square built.

They are capable of speed, efficiency and endurance. They should never appear low or long, but well proportioned.

Their heads are round with an intelligent expression and their eyes should be dark brown when combined with a black nose (if they have a brown nose, their eyes should be black). Lighter noses will have green or hazel eyes.

Their ears will hang down, and the bottom of their ears should be in line with their beard.

You will notice them by their teddy bear look.

Color Types

The Cockapoo comes in a range of colors and can either be solid, part, phantom or tri-color.

Colors include:

  • Red
  • Apricot
  • Sable
  • Brown
  • Chocolate
  • Tan
  • Merle
  • Black

Grooming Guide

The Cockapoo has three different coat types:

  1. Tight curly coat
  2. Medium curl
  3. Flat coat

It can be quite thick but is generally a single coat.

This makes them high on grooming requirements, if you can’t brush their coat daily, you may be better keeping them clipped short.

Behind their ears, in their armpits and where their collar/harness sit are all prime locations for matts and knots to appear!

Their coats should be clipped in a teddy bear cut.

Prone to ear infections, keep their ears clean and pluck the hair out if necessary. Your groomer can show you how to do this if you are unsure.

Care Guide For A Cocker Spaniel Poodle Mix

Full Grown Cockapoo

Being such a popular dog, you’d think they’d be easy to care for. This is not entirely true.

They are intelligent, energetic and have a huge grooming schedule (as you can see above).

The Cockapoo is perfect for busy homes, where there is always something going on.

They love keeping their mind occupied. They will happily settle in an apartment providing they are stimulated but equally adore romping around a farmyard!

Food and Dietary Requirements

Daily Food Consumption
Guide 600 calories
Cups of Kibble Two Bowls of Kibble Required per Day

The correct food for your dog is the one that meets their nutritional requirements, suits your lifestyle and your budget.

Ensure the food has enough protein and fat content to contribute to your dog’s development and provide the essential energy for romping around the park.

You may choose to feed dry kibble, canned wet or raw, but the general rule of thumb is to ensure the first ingredient is a meat source!

As a puppy, it’s best to feed three meals per day, then reduce this to two meals when fully grown. You could use a feeding schedule of 7am, 12pm and 5pm for your Cockapoo.

If they’ve not eaten within 15 minutes of putting the food down, pick it back up and lay fresh down at the next mealtime.

The Cockapoo is renowned for being a fussy eater, so it may take you a while to find a food they like.

Exercise Requirements

Daily Exercise Requirements
Minutes 90 minutes
Activity Level This is a high activity dog breed

Your Cockapoo will need daily walks.

They are super-energetic and require two 45-minute walks a day are a good place to start, adjust the duration to suit their personality (just remember to limit her exercise when your Cockapoo is a puppy):

  • 8 weeks old – 10-minute walks twice a day
  • 12 weeks old – 15-minute walks twice a day
  • 16 weeks old – 20-minute walks twice per day
  • 6 months – 30-minute walks twice per day

Your Cockapoo will try any activity as they just love being busy!

They will walk, play, hike, trek, swim, retrieve and even compete in flyball or agility. These guys are perfect companions if you lead an active lifestyle.

Make sure you keep her on her leash around livestock, busy public areas or anywhere she could potentially get into trouble.

Training Requirements

Cockapoo Outside

The Cockapoo is generally friendly, adaptable, sociable and eager-to-please, in the absence of proper training and socialization, they can become highly strung, fearful and anxious which can result in aggressive behavior.

A Cockapoo will respond best to positive reinforcement and reward-based training.

They are intelligent, so they will keep you on your toes. But it does mean that they are super-quick to pick things up (good or bad). The sensitive side of the Cocker can be prevalent so avoid the use of aversives at all costs.

Being super-smart, they do need a lot of mental stimulation too!

Cockapoos can get bored, which results in a whole host of behaviors you don’t particularly want (barking, digging, chewing, pining, self-injury).

Figure out if they are food or toy orientated and get creating some brain games. With their hunting heritage they tend to excel in treasure hunt games.

Known Health Problems

Common in both Cockers and Poodles, the Cockapoo does too suffer with Progressive Retinal Atrophy which can eventually lead to blindness.

DNA testing is advised when purchasing a puppy.

Poodles also suffer with patella luxation which is when the kneecap doesn’t sit in its normal location. Not surprisingly, sometimes the Cockapoo can suffer with the same condition.

Cockapoo Summary

Cockapoo Dog

Best suited for active homes, the Cockapoo is high energy and high in intelligence.

They are eager-to-please and super-trainable.

That said, this is best case. When not stimulated adequately, or trained and socialized, this should-be loving companion can become highly strung.

They need experienced or dedicated owners, who understand them and are willing to spend plenty of time with them!

When raised with them, they are amenable comrades for kids and other pets in the home (they really can be the perfect family pet)!

Upwards of 60 minutes exercise a day is essential, along with plenty of company.

They don’t tolerate being alone, so avoid this at all costs. An adorable teddy bear, agile and efficient, the Cockapoo really can do it all; from hiking for miles to curling up to watch a movie.

Let us know what you think about this amazing dog in the comments below.

John Woods Autho Bio Picture
John Woods is the founder of All Things Dogs, member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, graduate in Animal Behavior & Welfare and recognized author by the Dog Writers Association of America.

2 Comments

    • Hi Linda, the Cavapoo is a mix between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Miniature or Toy Poodle. The Cockapoo is a mix with a Cocker Spaniel (typically American) with a Toy or Miniature poodle.

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