Designer Dogs Attracting Attention in America
You’ve decided to purchase a designer dog, but you’re unsure which breed is right for your family. What are the top designer dogs in America?
With the advent of mixed-breed dogs gaining popularity across the country, we wanted to list the top types that seem to be growing in demand and why they are so popular. While the list is not exhaustive, it reflects the ever-expanding desire of the public, who are increasingly purchasing these specialty-bred puppies.
A designer dog is a specially bred dog conceived from two separate breeds (for example, a cockapoo is a combination of cocker spaniel and poodle). Combining the two breeds tends to bring the best qualities into one dog and results in a breed in and of itself.
1. The Labradoodle
This hybrid dog crosses between two well-loved and gentle parent breeds—the Labrador Retriever and the Standard, Toy, or Miniature Poodle. Generally considered friendly with gentle personalities, the Labradoodle was initially bred as service dogs raised for people suffering from allergic reactions to pet dander. Breeders hoped that the wiry hair of the Poodle would keep the hybrid from shedding.
The Poodle is the older of the two breeds and is thought to have German origins from the Middle Ages. Its name is derived from the Old German word ‘“pudelin” meaning “splash” – referring to the Poodle being a water dog initially. The Labrador Retriever was a cross-bred dog from Canada intentionally bred with English hunting dogs in the mid-19th century.
This kind of dog is a great family dog and shares a love for activity and water from both bloodlines. Depending on the size, the dog will need plenty of space to frolic, take long walks, and play. Miniature versions are wonderful pets more suited for indoor environments as good companion pets.
This dog is a cross between the cocker spaniel and the poodle and is also known as a “Spoodle” or “Cockadoodle.” Their look can vary widely depending on which breed of Poodle they have been bred. The color of the coats can come in a variety of hues, and their hair is often a thicker, shaggy, dense coat that sheds pretty infrequently. You will find this breed to be very hypoallergenic.
The Cocker Spaniel was originally bred in Britain as a small hunting dog, specifically for retrieving the English woodcock (bird). The hybrid breed of Cockapoo first appeared in the United States in the 1960s.
The cockapoo is friendly and eager to please breed. They prefer open spaces and have a daily need for exercise.
A miniature breed is a cross between a Yorkshire Terrier and Toy or Minature Poodle. The dogs are loyal to owners, but you will find that they are often skiddish around strangers and bark out warnings toward people or situations they find threatening. They are bright but not cooperative and can become aggressive. The dog is adaptable to smaller living quarters but often suffers from separation anxieties. Potty training with this breed can sometimes be a challenge.
The Yorkshire Terrier was developed in Yorkshire, England, in the mid-19th century. Yorkipoos were first bred from Scottish Terriers in the 19th century, and their size made them excellent “rat-chasers.”
This breed has gained a lot of traction in the last two decades. A reasonably recent designer dog is a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Standard, Toy, or Minature Poodle. The breed tends to be loving and active, intelligent and purposeful. Its disposition is very goal-centered, handling single tasks with an eager-to-please mentality. This gentle dog makes a wonderful family pet. The dog will accept all the cuddling you want to give and is very affectionate.
Raised in the Swiss Alps as a herding farm dog, the Bernese Mountain Dog was an outside dog that handled colder temperatures well. If you live in a warmer climate, such as Phoenix or Paradise Valley, the dog will adapt to the indoors without hesitation. Bernedoodles first appeared in the United States in 2003. (To discover more information about Bernedoodles, check out the website at can phoenixbernedoodles.com).
This breed is a cross between a Pug and Beagle. This designer crossbreed likes to be socially active and is a good choice for families. Beagles like the outdoors, and Pugs tend toward a laid-back disposition. Most puggles may inherit the physical characteristics of the squished-nosed pug or a longer beagle-type snout. Puggles are a hardy designer breed and tend to have long lifespans. However, they may develop significant breathing issues if the Pug is the dominant breed.
The Pug originated in China and is reported as early as 400 BC, while the Beagle is from the 16th century and was initially bred as a rabbit hunting dog.
The designer breed of Puggle first appeared in the 1980s
A relatively new crossbreed, the Pomsky looks like a miniature version of the Siberian Husky but is a crossbreed between Pomeranian and Husky. Taking their size cues from the Pomeranian, these tiny dogs tend to be temperamental, with bigger barks than their bite. Do not be surprised if they prefer one adult owner to be loyal to while disregarding everyone else in the family. The Pomsky will need to be groomed regularly and shed a lot. They are also prone to sickness and need regular dental hygiene.
Pomskies first appeared in the United States, with the first litter being born in 2012. Pomeranians are Central European spitz-type dogs, while the Huskies originated in Siberia and were used as working dogs pulling sleds over the snow.
This dog is a cross between a Chihuahua and Minature Yorkshire Terrier. The breed is also a relatively recent development that began to be bred in the US during the 1990s. This breed is active, stubborn, and strong-willed. They are bundles of energy, drawing from the chihuahua side of their parentage. Like their Yorkipoo cousins, they can alert owners at the first sign of trouble and will bark loudly at noises they do not recognize. Because of their size, the Chorkie does not make for a good family pet for smaller infants. They inherit excessive chewing traits of Chihuahuas and are natural-born scavengers, so be prepared to lose glasses, keys, or other chewable items, if you can discover their favorite hiding places.
The chihuahua is from Mexico and has become a staple of life since the 19th century. They are good rat chasers and tend to be affectionate and playful but will chew everything in sight.
These hybrid dogs require daily exercise but are gentle and intelligent. They make excellent service dogs, and their hypoallergenic coat means they are a fantastic choice for owners with breathing issues. Goldendoodles can eat like their parent breeds, so be prepared to stock up on plenty of dog food. While they respond well to training with a quieter, laid-back disposition, they naturally tend to dig in the backyard because they love fresh dirt.
The Golden Retriever stems from Scottish Highlands, bred as hunting dogs. The Poodle has German ancestry and was considered a water dog. The Goldendoodle is thought to have originated in Australia in the early 1990s