A Curly Combination, A Guide to Cockapoo

cockapoo chocolate
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Not only is the word Cockapoo fun to say, the dog that it identifies is fun in so many ways.


The cockapoo is actually a mixed-breed dog. It is a cross between one of three Cocker Spaniel breeds and one of four different types of poodles. The combinations are American Cocker Spaniel, English Cocker Spaniel or English Working Cocker Spaniel and a teacup, toy, miniature or standard Poodle.

They date back to around the 1960’s although the exact birth of the mixed or hybrid breed is not certain. The American Kennel Club does not officially recognize the Cockapoo as a breed group however, there are dog clubs that are conducting careful breeding techniques.

The goal of these clubs is to have the Cockapoo established as a recognized breed. As the cockapoo tends to be a favorite choice of many celebrities, the popularity of the mixed-breed continues to increase.


Parents: Cocker Spaniel/The Poodle

The Cocker Spaniel originated in England where they were bred primarily to be hunting dogs. There are three distinct breeds of Cocker Spaniel – the English, the English Working and the American. The average lifespan of a Cocker Spaniel is between 12 and 15 years, and they can weigh between 12 and 16-kilograms. The Cocker Spaniel colors include orange and white, black, blue roan and liver roan.

cockapoo parent

The Cocker Spaniel originated in England where they were bred primarily to be hunting dogs. There are three distinct breeds of Cocker Spaniel – the English, the English Working and the American.

The average lifespan of a Cocker Spaniel is between 12 and 15 years, and they can weigh between 12 and 16-kilograms. The Cocker Spaniel colors include orange and white, black, blue roan and liver roan.

The Poodle is part of a formal dog breed. There are four distinct types of poodles – the Standard, Miniature, Toy and Teacup. The origins of this breed are uncertain but it is believed to have come from France or Germany.

The Poodle can live between 12 and 15 years and can weight from 45 to 70 pounds. The poodle colors are typically orange and white or black


Appearance & Behavior

Generally described as having a solid build. It is emphasized by a study and square shape.

The coat can vary from both ends of the spectrum from very curly to straight and the eyes are very distinctive. They are almost always brown in color but they are noticeably large and well-set.

The cockapoo is an intelligent dog and is usually as smart as it is curious. This makes them perfect family pets as they are highly social. In other words, a cockapoo will want to be around people to interact and to entertain.

They are generally considered pleasant as pets but also tolerant so even small children can benefit from being in their presence.

Because they are easy to train, they are a favorite choice for most households. However, there are a few considerations to keep in mind.

As the mixed-breed dog has a high energy level, it will require space to exercise and run around to burn off some of that energy. So, with this in mind, a cockapoo would be best suited for a home with a yard but apartment living is fine.

In addition to their space requirements, a cockapoo also needs to be groomed. Regardless of the coat differences between curly or straight, grooming requirements are high.

One interesting upside to all of this attention given to your cockapoo will be returned in many ways. In addition to being a loving pet, they tend to also be very protective.



cockapoo front

Loving, playful and intelligent are words often used to explain the temperament of a cockapoo. These are key reasons why this particular hybrid is such a favorite for families.

The pleasant disposition that a cockapoo possesses makes this a dog that can get along with young and old. Their size is what makes them attractive in so many ways. They do not take up much space.

If you are seeking a pet that will become a loyal companion that has the ability to maneuver around tight spots, obstacles and is friendly to a fault, this is a good choice.

Cockapoos make a good pet provided they are given a great deal of mental and physical stimulation to keep them engaged. Having one in a busy home is a good idea as they will not get bored in such a setting.

One thing that bears mentioning is that the temperament of the average cockapoo puppy is not exactly the perfect way to judge the adult that will result.

In other words, if your puppy is a bit on the difficult to manage end of the scale, you can rest easy knowing that it is nothing more than a phase the puppy is going through. Your cockapoo will change once it gets past that phase.


Cockapoo Generations

The ‘F’ lettering system is used to describe cockapoo generations. This is a general break down of those generations with details on the characteristics that can be expected in each of them.

f1 cockapoo

F1 Cockapoo —This is the first generation of cockapoo. This would be a cockapoo that has full blooded parents on both sides which would be a full blooded Cocker Spaniel and a full blooded Poodle. This generation is generally considered to be the one that features optimum hybrid vigor.

They come in four different sizes and each is related to the particular poodle parent they have. The varieties are: Teacup, Toy, Mini and the Standard. So, based on our explanation, a Teacup Cockapoo would have a Teacup Poodle parent. A Toy Cockapoo would have a Toy Poodle parent and so on.

The other half of the F1 equation is the Cocker Spaniel parent. There are three different types: the American Show Cocker Spaniel, the English Show and the English Working. The American Cocker Spaniel is the smallest of the three Cocker varieties and has these distinct characteristics:


  • Domed head
  • Deep stop
  • Long, dropped ears
  • Heavy/dense coat that can grow to ground/floor level


The English Cocker Spaniel happens to be the largest of the three Cocker Spaniel varieties. This Cocker has the same characteristics of the American only the coat is not as dense or heavy.

The English Working Cocker Spaniel is a small, athletic sporting dog. It is very different than the other two and has the following characteristics:

  • Square face
  • High set ears
  • Light coat that does not need to be trimmed


f2 cockapoo

F2 Cockapoo — The product of breeding a pair of F1 Cockapoos. Of interest to note, if a breeding pair is a combination of F1 and F2, the litter pups will still be classified as F2. In fact, in general terms, a F2 is the result of breeding a F1 to any other cockapoo generation, including F3.


f3 cockapoo

F3 Cockapoo — The result of breeding a pair of F2 parents or higher.


f1b cockapoo

F1b Cockapoo — The result of breeding a F1 with a full bred Cocker Spaniel or Poodle. The F2b  would be a combination of a F2 and a full bred Cocker Spaniel or Poodle.

Any idea what an F3b Cockapoo would be? If your guess is a F3 bred with a full bred Cocker Spaniel or Poodle you would be correct.



They Have Super Powers

Okay, maybe they don’t have super powers quite in the sense that your typical super powers are recognized. However, they do have a couple of extremely good super qualities.

Cockapoos shed far less than any other mammal with hair. They are mistakenly identified as hypo-allergenic (no hair-covered mammal is) but they shed a very minimal amount over their lifespan.

They also have an extremely low amount of dander which is why people with allergies choose Cockapoos as pets as their allergies are not normally triggered because of the low dander.


Cockapoos Live A Long, Long Time

Well, in relative terms compared to most other dogs, Cockapoos are the elders. Many will reach the ripe old age of 13 however, most Cockapoos can live to 15 years of age. There are also exceptions to this rule. Some cockapoos have lived up to 20 years. The lifespan is long compared to many other dog and domesticated pet life spans.


Cockapoos Come In Various Sizes

As discussed above, there are a variety of sizes that Cockapoos are available in. It all depends on the size of the parents but a full grown Cockapoo can be as small as 6-pounds bred from a Teacup Poodle up to 30-pounds for the ones that have a Standard Poodle as one parent. This means that depending on the size of your home and yard, you can virtually match the size of the full grown Cockapoo to your living area.


 Alternate name

There is a handful of debate wether to call this breed cockapoo or cockerpoo.
Which one do you prefer?



cockapoo brown

The Cockapoo wins favor on so many fronts. It is a great companion and family dog. As it is kid-friendly, curious, loyal and patient.

Cockapoo temperament sets it apart from many breeds, unless you are judging the puppy and not the adult. Once the it gets past the puppy phase, it really starts to shine. They come in several sizes, all of which are smart, easy to train and protective.

It has a lengthy lifespan and barely sheds. Why wouldn’t you want one for your household or family? Clearly a Cockapoo fits into most situations and adapts well regardless.

For a great dog that will be part of your life for several years, you could use a Cockapoo in yours.

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