Are Aussiedoodles Good Family Dogs? Good With Small Kids?

Are Aussiedoodles Good Family Dogs?
Image courtesy of Cottonwood Creek Doodles

For a family seeking the perfect canine companion to join their ranks, you have a lot of questions. Which breed of dog is best suited for a family? This article will offer up an in-depth look at the Aussiedoodle and whether or not they’re the perfect family dog.

Are Aussiedoodles good family dogs? Yes, Aussiedoodles make great family dogs. They combine the smarts and low-shed traits of the Poodle with the active and friendly nature of an Australian Shepherd.

They love spending time with their family and are generally great with children. Because of their herding instincts, they may attempt to herd smaller children, so supervision is recommended.

There are many aspects that make the Aussiedoodle an excellent choice for a family dog, but there are also some behaviors you need to be aware of. We share that and more below, so keep reading.

Aussiedoodle Origins

To better understand the Aussiedoodle’s personality and temperament–and why it makes such a great family dog–it’s important to recognize its origin. The Aussiedoodle is not a purebred. Instead, it’s a mix of Poodle and Australian Shepherd.

The Poodle is most famous for being bred in France. However, some believe that its actual origins are in Asia. In France, they were most commonly used as duck hunters and joined their owners in water activities and sports. They’re quite commonly used as service dogs and drug detection dogs today.

In regards to the Australian Shepherd, as their name might suggest, they are a herding breed. They hail from Australia and would commonly assist their owners in herding their sheep and livestock. In the 1950s in America, they rose in popularity due to their use in movies.

When bred together, the Australian Shepherd is typically the mother. This is because the size of the pups can make carrying and birth difficult for a Poodle mother. They’re smaller than Australian Shepherd females.

This is important because pups typically spend more time with their mother after birth due to their need for nursing. The temperament of their mother can impact their own temperament at this early stage in life.

Temperament

Speaking of their temperament, Aussiedoodles are typically quite friendly and protective. This makes them a great family dog with small children. One of the first aspects that one will likely find in the Aussiedoodle is their keen intelligence.

This stems from their Poodle heritage. Poodles are notoriously clever and smart. In fact, the American Kennel Club ranks the Poodle among the Top 3 most intelligent dog breeds that exist in America.

Because of this incredible intelligence, the Aussiedoodle is easy to train. This is important because of the potential for herding. Since an Australian Shepherd was bred specifically for herding, the need to herd is in its genes.

What is herding? This describes the dog’s behavior when they nip or bump one’s legs in order to move them in a certain direction. It is not uncommon for Australian Shepherds to herd small children because they’re tiny. It awakens that instinctual need for the Shepherd to herd them around the yard or house.

However, it is possible to limit or break that herding instinct with careful training. Yet this training should come early in life. The temperament of any dog is determined both by the environment and their genetics.

One can rely on the Poodle’s intelligence and the Australian Shepherd’s friendly nature to offer a pleasing temperament that is great for any family.

Are Aussiedoodles Good With Children?

Understandably, if one has small children in the house, then one wants to ensure that they are safe with a dog present. The Aussiedoodle is a great companion for children. As mentioned before, they may have a herding instinct which might cause them to bump or nip the child in their desired location.

Not all Aussiedoodles have a strong herding instinct. If the puppy is trained when they’re young, too, this instinct can be overcome.

That being said, the Aussiedoodle is extremely friendly and playful. They can have a lot of energy and need to be exercised accordingly. Having young or older children in the house can be a great match.

Their energy levels are about the same. Children can play with the Aussiedoodles for hours outside and properly exhaust both the dog and themselves.

As with any dog during the puppy stage, they may also be prone to jumping and nipping. Puppies don’t often know their own strength. These are all behaviors that can be trained, however. Small children should also be taught how to handle puppies.

They don’t know their own strength either and can harm a puppy if they play too roughly with them. When children play with puppies, an adult should be present for supervision to ensure that both puppy and small child play gently with one another.

Are Aussiedoodles Hypoallergenic?

While no dog is truly ‘hypoallergenic’, Poodles are about as close as they come since they are a low-to-no shed breed. And with an Aussiedoodle having Poodle genes, they typically inherit those low-shed traits. It’s a common misconception that a dog who doesn’t shed or sheds very little is allergy-free.

While some people are allergic to the dander that drops when a dog sheds, dog allergies can also be triggered by saliva and proteins found in their urine. For those reasons, when talking about Aussiedoodles and other Doodle breeds (like Labradoodle and Bernedoodle), it’s usually said that they are ‘allergy-friendly’ rather than hypoallergenic.

If someone in the household suffers from allergies, a breed that’s crossed with a Poodle (like the Aussiedoodle) is a great choice. The genetic make-up or generation of the dog will have a big impact on its shedding tendency and overall allergy-friendliness. 

Generally speaking, a first-generation (F1) Aussiedoodle (Australian Shepherd x Standard Poodle), will shed a little bit. The F1B Aussiedoodle (F1 Aussiedoodle x Standard Poodle) is the least likely to shed and is usually what’s recommended for those most concerned with allergies. 

Socializing

As with any dog, it’s important that owners socialize them as soon as they can.  This can curb behaviors like jumping on people and barking at both people and other animals (be sure to check out our complete socialization guide).

It can also help to curb any herding instincts that the Aussiedoodle possesses. Owners should start to socialize their dogs both within and without their family once the puppy is able to start going outside and has received its necessary shots.

As puppies become more relaxed about new environments and new people–as well as other dogs and animals–they’ll be more relaxed adults as well. It’s also typically easier to socialize them when they’re puppies because they weight a lot less and are easier to manage.

Are Aussiedoodles Good Family Guard Dogs?

If an owner wants to ensure that the dog they’re choosing can protect and guard the family, then they might want to consider the Aussiedoodle. A larger Aussiedoodle can help protect children and family members from offenders–with the proper training.

Part of their nature is to be protective. The Australian Shepherd in them had to do more than just herding sheep and livestock. They also had to be ready to defend the livestock from other animals and potential threats.

These are instincts that one can have trained in the Aussiedoodle as well. Matched with their intelligence, the Aussiedoodle can be trained to protect children and family members from various threats.

In terms of smaller children, Aussiedoodles are wonderful protectors. They can watch over them and alert someone should the child find themselves in trouble.

Aussiedoodles are quite commonly used as service dogs and therapy dogs. They’re able to respond to crises without becoming aggressive themselves. For those with smaller children, this lack of aggressiveness is critical in needing a guard dog that also won’t pose a threat to young children. They’re guard dogs without aggression.

Related Questions

How Active are Aussiedoodles?

Aussiedoodles are extremely active. Their mixture of Poodle and Australian Shepherd heritage gives them high energy levels. They need to have adequate exercise outside and mental stimulation to properly satiate their needs for activity. One can play a few dog sports with them, like flyball, to expend their energy.

How Big do Aussiedoodles Get?

Aussiedoodles typically range from small to medium in terms of size. They can weigh within the range of 25 to 70 pounds. Their size largely depends on what kind of Poodle was used for breeding. A Standard Poodle will offer a larger size while a Toy Poodle will result in a smaller Aussiedoodle.

Image Credit: Cottonwood Creek Doodles