If you’re looking for an out-of-the-ordinary dog breed that’s intelligent, lovable, and makes an excellent family dog, you can’t go far wrong than the Dalmatian Poodle mix or Dalmadoodle as he’s affectionately called.
You might also have heard this designer dog go by some other names such as Dalmapoo, Dalmatiandoodle, or the Dalmatianpoo. I prefer the name Dalmadoodle, myself, I’m not keen on dog names ending in poo, and I think Dalmatiandoodle is too much of a mouthful if you’re trying to shorten his name.
The popularity of this mix is on the increase, and it’s hardly surprising because as designer dogs go, this one is an attractive option. The Dalmadoodle certainly catches the eye because everyone knows just what a stunning-looking dog is the Dalmatian.
It’s hardly a bad idea to cross beauty with brains, the brains being supplied by the Poodle. I’m not suggesting Dalmatians aren’t intelligent dogs because they are, but in terms of overall intelligence, only the Border Collie ranks higher than the Poodle.
However, crossing two different breeds of purebred dogs doesn’t make another purebred dog. The major kennel clubs such as the AKC (American Kennel Club) don’t, at present, accept any crossbreed or designer dogs into their ranks. Sad to say, it’s going to remain that way for a while.
Designer dogs, or to call them their real name, crossbreeds, result from mating two purebred dogs of different breeds. There are numerous cases of this today; some of the mixes are incredibly popular. The original purpose was for the resulting puppies to inherit the two parents’ best and most attractive traits. There is also evidence to suggest that hybrid vigor may exist between crossbreeding two breeds of dogs. This theory hypothesizes that because there is evidence to support improved biological fitness through hybrid vigor between different animal species, it should also be the case in dogs.
No one has yet proved this to be the case, although it does seem that crossbreeds have more minor health issues than their purebred parents. There are two sides to the argument, and there is no definitive evidence to support either.
Dalmatian Poodle Mix
1. Dalmatian Poodle Mix History
You cannot compare the history of a crossbreed or designer dog with that of most purebred dogs. The original designer dogs were Cockapoos bred in the 1950s; that’s not much history to discuss. The best way to understand a crossbreed is to take a close look at the history of the parent breeds.
Let’s begin with the Poodle.
The majority of dog historians agree that Poodles came from Germany and not France. However, the breed went through a great deal of development in France. The Poodle we now know results from crossbreeding several water dogs from Spain, Portugal, France, Hungary, Russia, and Germany. Another train of thought believes the dog is a descendent of the Barbet from North Africa. Whichever breed of dogs created the Poodle, he arrived in Germany and was put to work using his hunting skills.
The Poodle has a long history, and drawings of dogs that look remarkably similar to Poodles have been found dating back to the first century B.C. There are three varieties of Poodles, the Standard, Miniature, and Toy. It appears that the smaller varieties didn’t appear until the 1400s; the miniature was first and then followed by the Toy. Smaller Poodles result from breeding progressively smaller standard Poodles and not by crossbreeding a Poodle with another smaller breed.
Through time, the dog’s superior intelligence began to shine through, and owners began to understand they could quickly train Poodles to do tricks, which is how they famously became a circus dog. The English Kennel Club was the first to register the Poodle, followed by the AKC in 1886. Poodles are now the 7th most popular dog in the USA.
The Dalmatian is another dog breed that goes way back; so far, his history is debatable. The odds are they didn’t originate in Dalmatia, but they likely did crop up in that area back in the 1600s. However, Dalmatians did guard the borders of Dalmatia as dogs of war.
The rich and nobility prized the dog as a ‘carriage dog.’ They would run alongside or ahead of coaches of the rich and famous as a protector or just to be shown off. They slept with the horses and guarded them against any attempts to steal them during the night. Dalmatians also worked various other valuable jobs such as guard dogs, ratters, shepherds, and retrievers. Having such distinctive markings made the Dalmatian a popular circus dog, but what really made them famous was escorts to the early firefighters.
In the early days of firefighting, powerful horses pulled the machines. The Dalmatian’s close affinity with horses was helpful because it allowed the dog to trot ahead of the horses to clear the way forward. The firefighter’s horses were particularly valuable, so that Dalmatians would sleep in the station guarding the horses.
To this day, the Dalmatian is a favorite mascot of the fire brigade. When the Disney movie 101 Dalmatians hit the theaters, there was a massive boost to the popularity of Dalmatians. So much, so that many irresponsible breeders saw an opportunity to cash in on demand for the dog.
What you see on the big screen are exceptionally well-trained dogs. Many new owners couldn’t cope with the energetic and demanding nature of the Dalmatian, which led to many being abandoned to shelters. It also produced many poorly bred Dalmatians, which severely damaged the dog’s temperament, and even today, many would-be dog owners avoid Dalmatians because of this reputation.
2. How Big Are Dalmadoodles?
The Dalmatian Poodle mix is a cross between two larger dogs; even though there are three sizes of Poodle, Standard, Miniature, and Toy, it’s the Standard that typically forms one parent. However, that might not give you guarantees on the size of your Dalmadoodle because any Poodle over 15 inches in height is a Standard. To give you an indication of how difficult it is to gauge the height of your Dalmadoodle with any accuracy, check out the parents’ size.
Dalmatians can be between 19 to 24 inches and weigh between 45 to 75 pounds. Standard Poodles can be any height over 15 inches and weigh between 40 to 70 pounds. Your Dalmadoodle could vary in height and weight; an estimate based on other Dalmadoodles would be between 15 and 19 inches and weigh between 40 to 70 pounds.
3. What Do Dalmadoodles Look Like?
Dalmadoodles can have vastly different appearances; this is always the situation with designer dogs or crossbreeds. However, the mix will inherit a black nose, floppy ears, long tail, and a solid athletic build. Dalmadoodles can inherit his looks mostly from one parent or a combination of characteristics from both. The puppy might inherit the white coat and spots of a Dalmatian parent; the spots might not be spots but look more like markings.
In some cases, there are no spots at all, and the mix could be all white or pick up the color of his Poodle parent. The look and texture of the coat might be thick and wavy, more like the Poodles or short and sleek like the Dalmatian.
4. Dalmatian Poodle Mix Temperament
When anyone purchases a puppy, one of the first questions they ask is what kind of a personality he will have; that’s a good question and one that’s not easy to answer entirely with crossbreed dogs. The only thing we can do is look at the parents’ temperaments and other Dalmatian Poodle Mixes. Both parent breeds, in this case, are intelligent dogs, especially the Poodle; it’s pretty safe to assume the Dalmadoodle will be a smart dog.
But what about other personality traits? Your Dalmadoodle will be happiest when he’s with family; he’s going to be a lovable family dog. But as with the Dalmatian part of him, he will be protective and at first wary around strangers.
Dalmadoodles can be a mixture of easygoing, laidback even, but also have a real playful, naughty streak. They are attention-seeking and sensitive dogs, so that a petulant attitude will meet any harsh treatment. When training, owners must be firm and consistent. Lots of praise and treats will go a long way.
5. Is The Dalmadoodle Hypoallergenic?
It’s a fallacy to think any dog is hypoallergenic; this can’t happen. People with dog allergies are allergic to the dander (microscopic flakes of dead skin cells) from the animal. Dander routinely ends up in the air and on furniture and carpets every time a dog shakes or scratches himself. Some dogs might appear hypoallergenic because the dander gets caught up in the dog’s fur, so it’s not as noticeable, but it’s there.
Poodles don’t tend to shed as much as many dogs, which is another reason why some breeders describe them as hypoallergenic. If your Dalmadoodle inherits a coat similar to the Poodle, he will not shed that much, but he needs brushing down regularly to remove any tangles or mats. If the Dalmadoodle’s coat is similar to that of a Dalmatian, he will shed a lot all year round.
Final Thoughts – Dalmatian Poodle Mix
The Dalmatian Poodle mix will make an excellent addition to any family. But being intelligent and independent thinkers, they will need early socialization and training.
Ensure you find a reputable breeder and learn as much about the parents as you can. You need to see health certificates for both parents and try and trace the heritage of both parents if you can. After the movie 101 Dalmatians came out, there was a massive surge in popularity for Dalmatians. This led to many unprofessional breeders selling Dalmatian puppies.