As a general rule, Goldendoodles require a haircut typically every 5-7 weeks. Adorable that they are, Doodles are also spending a certain part of the day outdoor, like retrieving, rolling, playing, and exploring. Their coat tends to gather dirt and is prone to tangle. The only way you can restore it to its normal state is to groom and maintain it. I cut Nala’s hair every 5-6 weeks.
Even though Goldendoodles do not shed much, their coat requires a care routine courtesy of its type. Since both Doodle parents need a sufficient amount of attention in terms of coat care, it is natural that the same would apply to the hybrid.
Therefore, as a responsible Doodle owner, you ought to be prepared for grooming and haircut requirements for your pet to be appearing as endearing as always.
Goldendoodles’ Coats Explained
Your Doodle’s coat can be either curly or wavy. In the rarest of cases, it can also be straight, but this seldom happens. Once again, this is courtesy of the parental legacy, wherein the Poodle outsmarts the Golden Retriever by a significant margin.
But at times, the Golden Retriever’s genes do manage to find away, and the outcome is manifested in the form of the Doodle’s straight coat.
Usually, Goldendoodles sport any one of the following coat types –
- Curly, which is inherited from the Poodle and is characterized by ringlets and kinks all over;
- Straight, wherein the fur falls without any twists or turns and is the easiest to comb, brush and maintain;
- Wavy, the lowest shedding coat that requires weekly grooming;
Among these, the curly and the wavy coats echo the hypoallergenic trait that renders Goldendoodles the sought-after breed. However, grooming requirements also vary from moderate to demanding because they are prone to problems like matting and tangling. Comparatively, the straight coat is much easier to handle but is also prone to average shedding.
Predicting the Coat Type for Goldendoodle
Different coat types notwithstanding, Doodle pups sport identical coat, and it is only later that real and permanent variant emerges. Therefore, Doodle pups do not exactly echo their adults when it comes to coats.
This works perfectly well for someone who is not as sensitive and can withstand a bit of dander and pet hair without suffering any discomfort.
But if you are prone to allergies, then it is only sensible to avoid a straight coated Doodle and opt for the one with a wavy or curly coat. For achieving this, examine the fur which surrounds the face and the muzzle of the pup.
All it takes is a hint of crimping or a slightly wavy texture to indicate that the grown-up Doodle’s coat would be either curly or wavy. Likewise, a covering of smooth and soft facial hair implies a straight coat in adulthood, which could turn out to be risky for allergic and asthmatic individuals.
Why Goldendoodles Need Regular Grooming
Goldendoodles require a regular grooming routine because it –
- Prevents their coat from getting tangled and matted;
- Allows you to observe your Doodle’s skin up close and catch any skin problems or lumps in the initial stage;
- Strengthens the bond between you and your Doodle;
Other reasons include taking it as an opportunity to give your Doodle a full-body massage to improve blood circulation while imparting a feeling of being loved.
Steps Involved In Grooming Goldendoodles
How frequently you groom your Goldendoodle depends on several factors, namely –
- The type of coat
- Outdoor activities that the Doodle might be indulging in
- Degree of shedding that might be happening.
Ideally, wavy/curly coats call for daily brushing since they tend to knot up rather quickly. Comparatively, straight coats are a lot more hassle-free to handle since they can be easily combed weekly to stay in place.
Daily grooming is a must during the shedding season, as it is the only practical way of keeping your home free of randomly flying tufts of pet hair.
That being said, Here are steps involved in grooming Goldendoodles –
Step 1: Thoroughly Brushing
A slicker brush is what you need to brush your Doodle every day or at least thrice a week. The best way to brush is to tackle small portions, draw a hairline, and gradually move upward from the bottom.
Make sure you get to see the skin of the Doodle with each line and untangle the fur with each stroke, including the folds of the skin and the tail.
Keep brushing till the strokes are smooth and the brush comes out clean through all the strands. If you encounter a stubborn knot, try tugging at it or use clippers to remove it if it pulls too much.
Step 2: Shaving and Removing Ear-hair
Shaving is recommended because some Doodle regions tend to trap and retain dirt more than others and eventually become a breeding ground for infection.
The ear canal, belly, and genitals are some areas that should be shaved clean using clippers to expose them to air and prevent any accumulation of dirt or sweat.
Goldendoodles’ ear hair has been proven to trap moisture, especially while bathing, leading to bacterial growth and infection. The solution is to gently pluck out the hair from the inner ear canal to remain dry and safe from infection.
After plucking, you could even plug the ear canal with cotton balls to minimize water droplets from finding their way in. However, remember to remove them as soon as the bath or sponging is over and done with.
Step 3: Bathing and Blow-drying
Courtesy of their water-loving parents, Goldendoodles are not as opposed to water as cats are, but you must still make prior preparations. Keep everything from shampoo and conditioner to towels close at hand and brush the Doodle before bathing so that its coat is free of tangles.
Maintain conversation during the bath so that your Doodle takes the event in stride and rinse thoroughly so that there is no soapy remnant in the coat to cause skin problems later on.
Use lots of towels to dry after the bath, start from the head and ears, and gradually move downward. Blow-drying is a good option as long as you maintain a moderate temperature and ensure that the dryer is not too close to the Doodle’s coat.
Never let the Doodle dry naturally, as it might catch a chill, and do not stop patting them with the towel till all the damp spots are taken care of.
Step 4: Combing and Trimming
Having dried your Doodle, it is time to comb and clip. Start combing from the head and move down onto the neck, body, tail, and feet. Along the way, use clippers to trim the extra hair on both cheeks, neck, and back.
Next, move on to the chest, the sides, and the belly, but avoid the elbows. Whichever direction you take while clipping, the coat should appear evenly trimmed at the end of the exercise.
A word of caution here pertains to steering clear of the blood vessels, as clipping too close to the skin might cause hurt to your Doodle.
Step 5: Cutting Nails
To cut nails, use nail clippers that are specifically designed for this purpose. Trim the nails’ tips first and gradually clip away along the edges until they are sufficiently shortened.
Do not wait for the pads to show while cutting, and stop just short of the places to avoid hurting your Doodle.
Additional Grooming Tips
Following are some tips that you can apply during various stages of the grooming routine for best results –
- Move your hands in a single direction while applying shampoo;
- Rinse both the shampoo and the conditioner thoroughly by finger-combing through the coat;
- Pat-dry individual sections of the Doodle rather than ruffling through the coat with the towel to avoid tangles;
- Blow-dry in the direction of the fur rather than using your hand to separate the coat;
Recommended Haircuts for Goldendoodles
Part of Goldendoodles’ grooming routine also entails giving them a haircut that would add to their persona. To this effect, some of the styles that the wavy/curly/straight coat can be molded into are –
- Teddy-bear/Puppy, wherein the coat is evenly trimmed throughout till it is about 2 inches and appears smooth and fluffy;
- Kennel, the simplest of the haircuts wherein the coat is trimmed uniformly throughout the body, minimizes grooming and keeps the Doodle cool during summer.’
- Lion, wherein the Doodle sports a mane and has long hair in his paws and tail, to appear bold, stylish, and predatory;
- Poodle, wherein the Doodle appears to be a reflection of one of its parents, the Poodle;
- Mohawk, wherein the griddle has long hair around its head and a short crop everywhere else;
- Lamb, which calls for clumps of long hair around the ears, legs, and head and a trimmed coat all over;
While grooming is an aspect that should be routinely observed without deviation, haircuts call for plenty of experimenting. Since both need to be carried out without compromising, the onus is on you to figure out what suits you best in time and dedication.
Remember that ultimately it is the Goldendoodles that benefit the most in terms of health and appearance. You, on the other hand, are the facilitator that carries out these aspects.