Irish Doodles are active and intelligent dogs that love spending time with their people. They’re great with kids and other pets, making them a wonderful addition to more active families.
Like many other cross-bred canines, Irish Doodles don’t have a very well-documented history. They may have originated in the United States in the 1980s or 1990s when intentional cross-breeding started gaining popularity.
The Irish Doodle is a cross between the Irish Setter and the Poodle — two breeds known for their hunting and retrieving skills, intelligence, and fondness for their families. Irish Doodles have inherited many of these traits, earning a reputation as excellent hunting dogs that can also excel in agility and advanced obedience.
Irish Doodles have many other, less common names, including Irish Setterpoo, Irish Setter Doodle, and Irish Poo Setter. No matter what you call them, they make excellent family companions. They’re loyal, intelligent, social, and rarely bark. They also do well with children and other family pets. Similar to their parent breeds, Irish Doodles are higher energy dogs. Without enough activity, they can become bored or anxious. Sufficient physical exercise and mental stimulation can help keep them happy.
Genetic health and aging in Irish Doodles
Irish Doodles typically live 10 to 13 years. Like all dogs, Irish Doodles are prone to certain genetic health conditions based on what they inherit from each of their parents. Fortunately, DNA testing your dog can ensure that you give them the best possible care. Early detection of genetic health problems allows you to be proactive in your Irish Doodle’s care. That way, you can provide your dog with the best quality of life now and in the years to come.
An Embark Dog DNA Test looks at the following health conditions in Irish Doodles:
About the Irish Doodle
While Irish Setters and Poodles have histories that go back several hundred years, Irish Doodles are a more recent mixed breed. They’re “designer” dogs, similar to Labradoodles, Cockapoos, and Pomskys. In other words, breeders intentionally cross two purebred canines — in this case, Irish Setters and Poodles — to create a brand-new breed.
In most cases, Irish Doodles are a mix of an Irish Setter and a Standard Poodle. However, some breeders cross Irish Setters with Miniature Poodles. The result is a smaller Mini Irish Doodle.
Like their parent breeds, Irish Doodles are intelligent, high-energy dogs. In addition to being excellent hunting companions, they also make great running or hiking partners. Even with their higher energy levels, Irish Doodles are incredibly affectionate and love spending time with their families.
Grooming and shedding in Irish Doodles
Irish Doodles, like their Poodle parents, shed very little and produce minimal dander. As such, they’ve earned a reputation as hypoallergenic dogs. While the AKC states that no dog is truly 100% hypoallergenic, these dogs often do well with allergy sufferers.
While Irish Doodles shedding is minimal, their coats still require proper care. If you keep their hair long, you should brush them once daily to remove dirt and prevent tangles and matting. If you do decide to keep your Irish Doodle’s fur clipped shorter, you may only need to brush their fur two to three times a week.
One area you’ll want to keep trimmed, regardless of whether you clip the rest of your Irish Doodle’s fur, is around the ears. Too much hair here can become matted, trap moisture and bacteria, and may contribute to painful ear infections.
Like other dogs, Irish Doodles require regular nail trimming to prevent pain and other issues with their feet. They can also benefit from regular tooth brushing to prevent gingivitis and advanced stages of gum disease.
The size of a fully-grown Irish Doodle will depend on their Poodle parent. As most Irish Doodles are the result of crossing Irish Setters with Standard Poodles, adult males will typically be 24–28 inches tall and weigh 50–75 pounds, while adult females range from 22–26 inches tall and weigh 40–65 pounds. Male and female Mini Irish Doodles tend to be 12–17 inches tall and weigh 25–35 pounds.
Adult Irish Doodles tend to have rectangular bodies and long, lean limbs. Their heads are narrow with long, squared muzzles that resemble the Irish Setter (although some have pointed muzzles like their Poodle parent). They have long, floppy ears and almond or oval-shaped eyes. Their tails are medium-length and taper slightly at the end.
An Irish Doodle’s coat can vary in both color and composition. The most common colors include red, apricot, and black. Other variations include white, cream, brown, silver, and blue. Although rare, some Irish Doodles also have white markings on their bodies.
Generally speaking, Irish Doodles have single coats like their Poodle parents. Their fur tends to be soft, shaggy, and either wavy or curly. Their Poodle genetics have also resulted in minimal to no shedding, which can make them a more allergen-friendly (hypoallergenic) companion.
Irish Doodles should consume a high-quality diet of dry or wet food (or a combination of the two). While Irish Doodle puppies typically require three to four meals a day, adults do well with two larger meals.
As a more active breed, you want to make sure that you’re meeting all of your dog’s nutritional needs. If you’re unsure how much to feed your Irish Doodle, or what type of food to feed them, your vet can offer additional guidance tailored to your dog’s unique needs.
Irish Doodles have deep chests, which make them more vulnerable to stomach bloat and rotation and lead to a life-threatening condition known as gastric dilation volvulus (GDV). You may want to discuss the preventative procedure, a gastropexy, with your Irish Doodle’s veterinarian.
Playtime and training
Irish Doodles have both high energy and high intelligence. As such, they need plenty of physical activity and mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy. Without it, they can become anxious and destructive. They’ll need a yard with plenty of room to run. If you don’t have much space, longer or more frequent walks or regular trips to the dog park can help provide an Irish Doodle with the activity they need.
While intelligent, Irish Doodles aren’t always the easiest to train. Their Irish Setter genetics mean they may have a shorter attention span and can become bored quickly. Patience is essential when it comes to training. The good news is that these dogs tend to remember what they learn after successful training. They’re also fairly easy to housetrain. Plenty of positive reinforcement can be helpful.