The Australian Labradoodle is a mixed breed, so they don’t have history as their own breed. Both parent breeds, however, are well known and loved.
The Poodle is one of the oldest breeds developed specifically for hunting waterfowl. Most historians agree that the Poodle originated in Germany, but developed into their own breed in France. Many believe that the breed is the result of crosses between several European water dogs, including Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Hungarian, and Russian water dogs. Some say that the Miniature and Toy Poodles emerged shortly after the Standard, but many believe it wasn’t until the 1400s that breeders began intentionally creating smaller versions of the Poodle — first the Miniature, then the Toy — to delight the Parisian bourgeoise. Although the Standard was used for duck hunting, the smaller varieties had use as well – while many kept them as lapdogs, they were also talented truffle hunters. It’s not known for sure when Poodles arrived in the U.S., but the American Kennel Club registered their first Poodle in 1886. The Poodle Club of America was founded in 1896, but disbanded shortly thereafter. Poodle enthusiasts reestablished the club in 1931.
Despite the Australian Shepherd’s misleading name, the breed originated fairly recently in the western United States. It’s likely that the Aussie’s ancestors include collie and shepherd-type dogs that were imported from Australia during the 1840s, leading to their ‘Australian’ name. Although the breed is prized both for their ability as working sheepherding dogs and talented agility participants, the breed wasn’t recognized by the American Kennel Club until 1993.
The Labrador Retriever originates from the island of Newfoundland, off the northeastern Atlantic coast of Canada. First known as St. John’s dogs, after the capital city of Newfoundland, Labs were companions and helpers to the local fishermen beginning in the 1700s. Today, their working dog usage can be as a skilled hunting & retrieving dog, or for tasks such as service dog work or drug-sniffing dogs. Beyond their potential as a working dog, they are amazing family dogs, and they hold the title of America’s most popular breed.