Goldendoodle Health Problems – How To Spot Them

Goldendoodles make for great pets and family dogs. However, you’d probably want to know what the possible Goldendoodle health problems are. It’s important that you can recognise the symptoms of each condition, so you can act quickly for the sake of your Goldendoodle’s health.

The Goldendoodle is a mixed breed between a Poodle and a Golden Retriever. When it comes to mixed breeds and designer dogs, genetics can be quite unpredictable and your dog can either inherit the best from their parents or the worst when it comes to health.

Goldendoodles are normally a healthy breed that have a long life span. However, the Goldendoodle is still predisposed to the same health problems its parents are prone to developing.

In this article, we are going to look at what health problems Poodles and Golden Retrievers are prone to developing. By exploring this, you would get a better idea of the possible Goldendoodle health problems are.

Goldendoodle Health Problems  – How To Spot The Symptoms

When it comes to mixed breeds such as the Goldendoodle, breeders’ goal is to eliminate some of the health issues usually presented in the two parent dogs. As a result a healthier dog is created.

The question still stands, what about Goldendoodles health problems?Although, Goldendoodles are usually a healthy hybrid with a long life span, they can still be prone to a list of the same health problems that the Poodle and the Golden Retriever have.

These health problems include the following

Atopic Dermatitis

This Goldendoodle health problems is different from parasitic dermatitis which is a result from fleas. Atopic Dermatitis is a skin condition which is a result from airborne allergens such as the following:

  • Dust mites
  • Pollen or dander

Common symptoms

  • Excessive scratching and itching of the eyes, mouth, ears, and paws.
  • Inflamed skin that is hot to the touch (lesions).
  • Recurrent ear infections.
  • Excessive chewing on the paws and areas such as the groin and armpits.
  • Scaly or greasy skin with flaking that resembles dandruff.
  • A strong, unpleasant skin odor.
  • Rubbing on the carpet.
  • Hair loss (alopecia)


The treatment for atopic dermatitis in pets can be one of the following:

  • Steroids
  • Anti-itch shampoos
  • Antihistamines
  • Fatty acid therapy
  • Antibiotics in severe cases

All of the mentioned above must be prescribed by a vet.

In addition, to treat one of these Goldendoodle health problems, is to control your dog’s exposure to the environment that’s triggering their reaction.


This health condition is also known as Hypothyroidism. Furthermore, this disorder affects the thyroid gland and it’s also responsible for the development of other conditions such as alopecia (hair loss), obesity, lethargy, hyperpigmentation, pyoderma, and other skin conditions.

Common Symptoms

  • Collapsing
  • Jerking
  • Stiffening
  • Muscle twitching
  • Loss of consciousness  
  • Drooling   
  • Chomping   
  • Tongue chewing   
  • Foaming at the mouth


This condition is treated through the use of medication and adjusting the dog’s diet. However, a vet must make the decision on the appropriate course of treatment.

Cranial Cruciate Ligament Rupture

Usually there are a few ways a dog’s cranial cruciate ligament can rupture:

  • Suddenly rupture from excessive force. This can range from jumping and landing awkwardly or an accident
  • Rupture caused by normal “wear and tear”
  • Combination of factors such as obesity, genetics and breed

If you want to learn more about Goldendoodle genetics click here Goldendoodle Size Chart With Pictures

Common Symptoms

  • Difficulty rising from a sit
  • Trouble jumping into the car
  • Decreased activity level
  • Limping
  • Muscle atrophy in the affected leg
  • Decreased range of motion of the knee joint
  • Popping noise
  • Unwillingness to play
  • Stiffness


The treatment for this condition is surgery followed by the following:

  • Adequan Injections  
  • Glucosamine
  • Oral joint supplements  
  • Weight Management   
  • Professional Rehab/Physical Therapy

Patellar Luxation

This is a common Goldendoodle health problem. The patella is the kneecap and luxation means dislocation of a joint. Furthermore, this mean that the knee joint, usually in the back leg, slides in and out of place resulting in pain.

Common Symptoms

  • Limping
  • Abnormally carrying their leg
  • Difficult to bend the knee
  • Avoiding running, jumping or any exercising
  • Swelling


Usually, treatment is surgery depending on the severity of the case. On the other hand, the non-surgical options include:

  • Body weight management     
  • Physiotherapy    
  • Exercise modification     
  • Medications such as anti-inflammatory painkillers

Hip Dysplasia

Goldendoodle hip dysplasia is inherited health condition and is usually seen in larger dogs. This genetic condition results in the thighbone not fitting properly on the hip joint. Furthermore, developing this condition can be contributed by the following factors:

  • Excessive growth rate
  • Some types of exercise
  • Overweight and poor nutrition

Finally, it’s important that dogs with hip dysplasia are not bred.

Common Symptoms

In some cases, the dog won’t show any pain or symptoms of discomfort. However, in the case there are symptoms, they might include the following:

  • Lameness on one or both rear leg
  • Decreased activity      
  • Loss of thigh muscle mass      
  • Swaying or bunny hoping


  • Weight management
  • Exercise restriction, especially on hard surfaces
  • Physical therapy
  • Joint supplements
  • Anti-inflammatory medications such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids

Progressive Retinal Atrophy

This Goldendoodle health problem is an eye diseases. Furthermore, this results in the gradual deterioration of the retina. First, the dog would lose sight during the night before progressing to lose sight during the day as the condition progresses to the next stage.

Common Symptoms

  • Night blindness
  • Nervousness during the night
  • Avoiding going into dark rooms
  • Bumping into object when the light is dimmed


Unfortunately, there is no effective treatment for this Goldendoodle health condition. Usually, the dog affected by this would go completely blind.

Finally, there is the option to try and delay the process through the use of antioxidant therapy, although there is no evidence that is effective.

Von Willebrand’s Disease

This health problem is one of the most common inherited bleeding disorders in dogs. Furthermore, this is caused by a deficiency of a specific protein that helps the blood cells to stick together.

Common Symptoms

  • Bleeding from nose, mouth
  • Blood in urine


Unfortunately, there is no known cure for this Goldendoodle health problem. However, to manage the condition, the following can be applied:

  • Blood transfusions
  • Administering a medication called desmopressin

Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis

Usually, Subaortic stenosis is genetic health condition that affects larger-breed dogs. This disease occurs when the flow of blood is restricted. Furthermore, this obstruction is in the area of the heart under the aortic valve.

Common Symptoms

The first sign of the disease may present itself at birth or appear in the first year of life.

  • Lethargy
  • Avoiding exercise
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fainting

In some extreme cases, heart failure may occur.


In most cases dogs would be given medication called betta blockers to prevent the heart from beating too fast and can control arrhythmias.

Ear Infection

A common Goldendoodle health problem is, ear infection. The reason for that is their floppy ears that can trap moisture and result in an infection.

Common Symptoms

  • Head shaking
  • Foul smell coming from the ears
  • Scratching and itchiness
  • Loss of balance
  • Redness of the ear canal
  • Swelling of outside of the ear
  • Brown, yellow, or bloody discharge


The best treatment is prevention in the form of checking and cleaning your dog’s ears regularly.

Once the infection is already there, your vet would do the following:

  • Clean the ears with a specialised ear cleanser
  • Prescribe topical medication for you to apply at home

In extreme cases, antibiotics might be prescribed.

Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus

This health problem is also known as bloat and is a life-threatening condition. Usually, this affects large, deep-chested dogs such as larger Goldendoodles. This condition can be brought on by the following habits:

  • The dog is fed one large meal a day
  • Eats rapidly
  • Drinks large volumes of water after eating
  • Exercise after eating

This health problem presents when the stomach is distended with gas or air, then twists. As a result, the dog is unable to restore the normal blood flow to the hear because of the trapped air.

Common Symptoms

  • Bloated or a pot belly
  • Making vomiting sounds but nothing coming out
  • Vomiting
  • Excessive drooling
  • Stomach cramps
  • Pale gums
  • Fainting
  • Change in mood – depressed, lethargic or restless

It’s imperative that you take your Goldendoodle to the vet once you notice these symptoms.


  • Intravenous fluid therapy
  • Isotonic fluids and hypertonic saline
  • Colloidal solution such as hetastarch

Furthermore, in extreme cases without immediate medical attention, it can result in death.

Fortunately, due to the two breeds mixed together, Goldendoodles tend to have less breed-specific diseases than their parent breeds. However, Goldendoodle health problems would still result from either side of the parents.

Therefore, knowing what health problems are often seen in Poodles and Golden Retrievers is essential knowledge for Goldendoodle owners.

Goldendoodle Health Problems – Poodle Side

Some health problems that can come from the Poodle side of the mix include:

  • Patellar Luxation
  • Hypoadrenocorticism – Also known as Addison’s Disease
  • Hyperadrenocorticism – Also known as Cushing’s Disease
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Epilepsy
  • Progressive Retinal
  • Thyroid Issues
  • Bloat – Also known as Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus
  • Hypoglycemia in Puppies

Goldendoodle Health Problems – Golden Retriever Side

Health issues that can come from the Golden Retriever side of the family include:

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Skin Conditions
  • Chest Conditions  such as Subvalvular aortic stenosis
  • Cancer
  • Von Willebrand Disease
  • Cataracts
  • Ear infections

Common Disease Goldendoodles Die From

Unfortunately, some Goldendoodle health problems can be fatal for your pup. The most common disease Goldendoodle die from if left untreated are the following:

  • Bloat
  • Cancer
  • Thyroid Problems
  • Heart Disease
  • Addison’s Disease

It’s imperative that you know the symptoms of the mentioned diseases. The reason for that is, if you know the symptoms, you’d be able to act quick enough and take your Goldendoodle to the vet to be treated.

In addition to that, taking your Goldendoodle for regular vet check-ups is equally as important as vets can notice signs of illnesses that you might miss.

Choosing A Healthy Goldendoodle

Picking a healthy Goldendoodle can be very difficult but it would spare you and your family heartache down the road. Although, a breeder might not be able to guarantee that your Goldendoodle won’t develop health problems.

However, there are things you should look for in order to avoid Goldendoodle health problems in the future:

  • Avoid buying a puppy from irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Always, research and look for previous feedback

You should always use a reputable breeder who can provide the following information:

  • Medical certificate from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) stating that the parents do not have hip or elbow problems
  • OFA heart clearance stating they do not have apparent heart issues
  • Medical certificate from the Canine Eye Registry Foundations that the parents’ eyes are healthy

A vet checking over the parents is not a guarantee that your puppy won’t develop Goldendoodle health problems. However, knowing the parents have passed the mentioned health tests, it’s the closest you’d get knowing you have a healthy Goldendoodle.

Finally, avoid breeders who can’t or are refusing to provide you with the mentioned certificates that would prove the parents health.

What Generation Is The Healthiest Goldendoodle

As any pet owner, you would probably want to end up with a god that has less chance of developing any of the Goldendoodle health problems. To achieve this, you must know which generation breeding has had the best results in terms of health.

From the research on the internet, the conclusion is that the first generation is often the healthiest.

As additional information, when it comes to people suffering from allergies, the further down in the generation the Goldendoodle is, the better.

Final Thoughts

As a mixed breed, the Goldendoodle suffers from less health problems and is overall healthy. However, the Goldendoodle health problems that can develop would be inherited through the parents – Poodle and Golden Retriever. Therefore, it’s important to know what are the usual health problems that occur in those two breeds.

Furthermore, it’s imperative to be able to recognise the symptoms of those disease, so you can act quickly and treat your Goldendoodle.

Lastly, in order to have a healthy Goldendoodle, you should start from the beginning by selecting a reputable breeder and avoiding puppy mills and pet shops.


My name is Iliyana and I'm a passionate animal lover and pet owner. As there is significantly less information online about unusual and exotic pets, I decided to found this website and recruit expert writers to help pet owners.

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