Designer Breed a Family Favorite

If you thought designer dog breeds were a newer trend during the past 10 years or so, think again. The cockapoo was one of the first mixed breed types of its kind, making its American debut circa 1950.

The cockapoo has remained a longstanding favorite over the years, unfortunately putting many dogs at a disadvantage as backyard breeders trying to make a quick profit ultimately produce unhealthy dogs.

Should you decide to adopt a cockapoo, make sure you ask thorough questions about the health and lineage of the dog's parents to ensure you are getting an actual cockapoo. 


One of the reasons the cockapoo is in such high demand is its legacy: the designer breed is a result of crossing a cocker spaniel (American or English) with a miniature or toy poodle. One other method: breed cocker spaniel/poodle mixes with one another.

The breed’s history itself is relatively limited; to learn more about their ancestors, read about cocker spaniels and poodles. The cockapoo is not recognized as a breed by canine organizations such as American Kennel Club, nor is it considered a pure breed due to its breeding standards, or lack thereof. 

Due to the sometimes unpredictable outcome of crossing two different breeds, the cockapoo’s personality can vary based on which traits the dog has inherited. Typically, the breed is friendly, good with other dogs and cats, a people pleaser —and, therefore, a dog who responds well to regular companionship and obedience training.

Cocker spaniels and poodles are both working/hunting types of breeds, so the cockapoo by nature will benefit from daily exercise and activities to keep it from becoming bored or anxiety ridden due to separation or boredom.


The cockapoo has a very wide range of color combinations. In fact, because there aren’t any breeding standards for the cockapoo, their appearance can be unpredictable — even litter mates can look nothing alike.

Color combinations include black, black with spots, tan, beige, beige with brown and gray markings, red, auburn, apricot, shades of brown, cream, white, silver, brindle, and merle (a pattern in the coat that, in this case, can be “blue,” brown, and mixed with white or cream).

Like the poodle, the cockapoo can have a low-shedding coat. The cockapoo’s coat texture can vary from curly to sleek.

The size of a cockapoo will vary depending on which type of poodle was crossbred with a cocker spaniel. Cockapoos will weigh, on average, anywhere from 12 to 34 pounds based on the size of the chosen poodle.

The most common health conditions for the cockapoo breed, based on Nationwide pet insurance policyholder claims in 2016 are, in order of pervasiveness:


While any dog may have the tendency to develop breed-specific medical conditions, this does not mean your cockapoo will necessarily be diagnosed with them.

One of the best things a pet owner can do for his dog is to visit a veterinarian regularly to monitor his health and take preventive measures to ensure his well being.