Cavapoo vs Mini Goldendoodle: Which is the Best Fit for You?

Are you caught in the delightful dilemma of choosing between a Cavapoo vs Mini Goldendoodle? You’re not alone. These adorable, intelligent, and affectionate “designer dogs” have captured the hearts of many, making them some of the most sought-after breeds today. But how do you decide which one is the perfect fit for you and your family?

In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the nitty-gritty details that could influence your decision. From contrasting their sizes, coats, and exercise needs to discussing their temperament, trainability, and health considerations, we leave no stone unturned.

Cavapoo Vs Mini Goldendoodle: Which Is The Best Fit For You? 1

Cavapoo vs Mini Goldendoodle

Cavapoos are generally smaller and have a more consistent size. Mini Goldendoodle are generally more energetic, requiring higher levels of exercise and mental stimulation. Mini Goldendoodles are quick learners but may exhibit a streak of independence, whereas Cavapoos are easier to train but may not be as intellectually curious.

We’ll even guide you through the often-overlooked aspect of cost and ethical breeding practices, ensuring you make an informed decision that brings joy and companionship for years to come.

So, whether you’re a first-time dog owner or looking to add another furry member to your family, read on to discover which of these popular breeds aligns best with your lifestyle.

Looking for more mixes? Check these out.

The Origins of the Cavapoo and Mini Goldendoodle

Understanding the history of the parent breeds can offer valuable insights into the characteristics and traits you might expect in their designer offspring, such as Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles.

Here’s a look at the historical background of Golden Retrievers, King Charles Cavaliers, and Poodles, as well as when and how Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles came into existence.

Golden Retrievers

Originating in the late 19th century in Scotland, Golden Retrievers were initially bred to retrieve waterfowl during hunting expeditions. Lord Tweedmouth, an avid hunter, is credited with developing the breed by crossing a Yellow Retriever with a Tweed Water Spaniel, a breed that is now extinct.

Over the years, the breed has gained immense popularity for its friendly demeanor, intelligence, and versatility, making it one of the most popular dog breeds in the United States today.

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King Charles Cavaliers

The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has a royal history dating back to the 17th century. Named after King Charles II of England, who was seldom seen without two or three of these toy spaniels, the breed was a favorite among British royalty.

Over the years, the breed underwent various changes, and it wasn’t until the 1920s that the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was distinguished from the King Charles Spaniel, its smaller, more dome-skulled relative.


Poodles have a more complex history, with their origins often attributed to Germany but their development largely taking place in France. Initially bred as water retrievers, Poodles are known for their intelligence and agility.

They come in three sizes: standard, miniature, and toy, each of which has been used for various purposes, from hunting to circus performances.


The Cavapoo is a relatively new breed, developed in the late 20th century. It’s a cross between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Poodle, usually a miniature or toy Poodle.

The breed was developed to combine the gentle and affectionate nature of the Cavalier with the intelligence and hypoallergenic coat of the Poodle.

Mini Goldendoodles

Similarly, the Mini Goldendoodle is a more recent development, gaining popularity in the 1990s. This breed is a cross between a Golden Retriever and a Miniature Poodle.

The aim was to create a smaller version of the Goldendoodle that retained the best traits of both parent breeds, such as the Golden Retriever’s friendly disposition and the Poodle’s intelligence and low-shedding coat.

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Cavapoo vs Mini Goldendoodle Overview

AspectCavapooMini Goldendoodle
SizeMore consistent size due to similar-sized parentsVaries, generally larger than Cavapoos
Coat & ColorSofter, more consistent coat; diverse colors and patternsWavy to curly coat; often bred for red or apricot color
Shedding & GroomingGenerally lower shedding; moderate groomingVariable shedding; higher grooming needs
TemperamentGentle, affectionate, likely less intelligent than GoldendoodlesEnergetic, intelligent, possibly protective
TrainabilityEasier to train but less intelligentQuick learners but may be independent
HealthGenerally healthier due to longer muzzle; prone to fewer diseases than Cavaliers, benefits from hybrid vigorMay inherit health issues from both parent breeds; benefits from hybrid vigor
Exercise NeedsModerate; adaptable to indoor livingHigh; needs more outdoor activity and mental stimulation
SociabilityGenerally affable and less protectiveFriendly but can be protective
Cost$1,500+ from reputable breeders$1,500+ from reputable breeders
Breeding ConcernsWatch for puppy mills; seek AKC registered parents and Doodle association for puppiesSame as Cavapoos; be cautious of unethical breeders


Cavapoo Size

Cavapoos are a cross between a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Miniature Poodle. Generally, they are smaller dogs, with most weighing between 12 to 25 pounds and standing about 9 to 14 inches tall at the shoulder.

One of the advantages of choosing a Cavapoo is the consistency in size. This is largely because King Charles Cavaliers are roughly the same size as Miniature Poodles, making the Cavapoo size more predictable. Their small size makes them ideal for apartment living or homes with limited space.

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Goldendoodle Size

Mini Goldendoodles, on the other hand, are a hybrid breed created by crossing a Golden Retriever with a mini Poodle. These dogs are generally larger, with their weight ranging from 25 to 35 pounds and a height of 20 to 24 inches at the shoulder for standard Goldendoodles.

Size Consistency

It’s worth noting that the size of a Goldendoodle can vary more widely than that of a Cavapoo. This is because Golden Retrievers are significantly larger than both King Charles Cavaliers and Miniature Poodles.

Therefore, depending on the specific genes a Goldendoodle inherits, their size can be less predictable.

Contrasting the Colors of Mini Goldendoodles and Cavapoos: A Palette of Possibilities

When it comes to the aesthetic appeal of our furry friends, color plays a significant role. Both Mini Goldendoodles and Cavapoos offer a wide range of coat colors, thanks to their Poodle genes. However, there are distinct differences in the color patterns commonly seen in these two hybrid breeds.

Mini Goldendoodle Colors: A Focus on Warm Hues

The Influence of Poodle Genes

Mini Goldendoodles can come in any color that Standard or Miniature Poodles come in, thanks to the Poodle genes they inherit. However, breeders often aim for specific shades that are popular or desirable.

The Red and Apricot Trend

One of the most popular dogs in terms of color is the red or apricot Mini Goldendoodle. Breeders often choose to breed Golden Retrievers with red or apricot Poodles to maintain and enhance this warm, appealing color.

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Cavapoo Colors: A Symphony of Shades and Patterns

Poodle and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Influences

Cavapoos, like Mini Goldendoodles, can also inherit any of the colors present in the Poodle breed. However, they are more likely to show a mix of patterns and colors that are present in both the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and the Poodle.

Common Colors and Patterns

Some of the colors that are common in both Poodles and Cavaliers, and may therefore show up in Cavapoos, include black, white, apricot, and cream. Patterns like “Parti” (a white base coat with large patches of another color) can also be seen.

Unique Characteristics

What sets Cavapoos apart is their likelihood to inherit unique characteristics like “ticking” (small, isolated areas of color on a white base coat) or “roan” (a mix of colored and white hairs), which are patterns seen in the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

Coat, Shedding, and Grooming: Mini Goldendoodles vs Cavapoos

Mini Goldendoodles: A Range of Coats with Moderate Shedding

Coat Types

Mini Goldendoodles can have a variety of coat types, ranging from wavy to curly. The type of coat largely depends on how much they inherit from their Poodle parent. Curlier coats are often associated with Mini Goldendoodles that express more Poodle genes.

Shedding and Grooming

While Mini Goldendoodles are often touted for their low-shedding coats, the amount they shed can vary. If they inherit more from the Golden Retriever side, which is a breed known for moderate shedding, they may shed more than those that lean towards the Poodle side.

As for grooming, regular brushing is essential, and many owners opt to take their Mini Goldendoodles to a professional groomer to manage their coats.

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Cavapoos: Consistency in Low-Shedding Coats

Coat Characteristics

Cavapoos generally have a softer, more consistent coat type, often described as plush or silky. They can have curls, but these are usually looser and less defined than those in Mini Goldendoodles.

Shedding Levels

Cavapoos tend to shed less than Mini Goldendoodles. This is because Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are lower-shedding dogs compared to Golden Retrievers. Therefore, even if a Cavapoo inherits more from the Cavalier side, the shedding is likely to be less noticeable.

Grooming Needs

Grooming a Cavapoo is generally less labor-intensive than grooming a Mini Goldendoodle. Regular brushing is usually sufficient to keep their coats in good condition. However, they do benefit from occasional trips to the groomer, especially to manage areas that are prone to matting, such as behind the ears.

Temperament and Personality: Mini Goldendoodles vs Cavapoos

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Both Mini Goldendoodles and Cavapoos are known for their friendly and affectionate natures, but there are subtle differences that might make one a better fit for your lifestyle than the other.

Mini Goldendoodles: Energetic and Intelligent

Personality Traits

Mini Goldendoodles are often described as energetic, intelligent, and friendly. They inherit their intelligence from their Poodle parent, making them quick learners who are often easy to train. Their Golden Retriever lineage contributes to their friendly and sociable demeanor.

Activity Level

Being a mix of two active breeds, Mini Goldendoodles often require a good amount of exercise to keep them happy. They are most content when they have a yard to run around in or are taken on regular walks. They also enjoy playtime and are often seen as one of the most popular dogs for families with children due to their energetic nature.

Cavapoos: Gentle and Affectionate

Personality Characteristics

Cavapoos are generally known for their gentle and affectionate temperament. They are often less energetic than Mini Goldendoodles but are equally loving and eager to please. Their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel parent contributes to their laid-back and affectionate nature, making them excellent lap dogs.

Socialization and Training

Cavapoos are often easier to socialize than some other breeds due to their naturally friendly disposition. They get along well with other pets and are excellent with children, making them a popular dog breed for families. Training is generally straightforward, as they are eager to please and quick to pick up new commands.

Trainability: Mini Goldendoodles vs Cavapoos

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Mini Goldendoodles: Quick Learners with a Dash of Independence

Intelligence and Learning

Mini Goldendoodles are often praised for their intelligence, a trait they inherit from their Poodle parent. This makes them quick learners who are generally easy to train.

However, their intelligence can sometimes make them a bit independent, which means consistent training methods and positive reinforcement are key.

Obedience and Skills

Given their active nature and intelligence, Mini Goldendoodles excel in obedience training and can even participate in dog sports like agility.

They respond well to commands and are usually keen to learn new skills, making them one of the most popular dogs for those interested in more advanced training.

Cavapoos: Eager to Please but Slightly Less Intelligent

Willingness to Learn

Cavapoos are generally very eager to please, which makes them highly trainable. However, they may not be quite as intelligent as Mini Goldendoodles.

This can actually make them a bit easier to train for first-time dog owners, as they are less likely to challenge their trainers.

Socialization and Commands

Cavapoos are often quick to pick up basic commands and are usually easy to socialize. Their friendly disposition makes them open to meeting new people and animals, and their willingness to learn makes them adaptable to various living conditions, whether it’s an apartment or a house with a yard.

Health Considerations: Mini Goldendoodles vs Cavapoos

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Parent Breed Health Concerns

Poodle Diseases

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Subvalvular Aortic Stenosis
  • Cataracts
  • Addison’s Disease

Golden Retriever Diseases

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Certain Types of Cancer
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Diseases

  • Mitral Valve Disease
  • Syringomyelia
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Ear Problems

Overlapping Health Issues

Certain diseases overlap between Poodles and the other parent breeds, which could result in the puppy inheriting these conditions. For example:

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy: Both Poodles and Golden Retrievers are prone to this eye condition, increasing the likelihood that a Mini Goldendoodle could inherit it.
  • Hip Dysplasia: This condition is common in all three breeds—Poodles, Golden Retrievers, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels—making it a concern for both Mini Goldendoodles and Cavapoos.

Hybrid Vigor

Both Mini Goldendoodles and Cavapoos benefit from the concept of “hybrid vigor,” which suggests that first-generation mixes may be healthier than their purebred counterparts. This is due to their more diverse genetic makeup, which can reduce the risk of inheriting specific health issues.

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Advantages of the Cavapoo Mix

It’s worth noting that Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are considered a fairly unhealthy breed because of the harmful genetic variants they carry, prone to a range of issues including respiratory problems due to their brachycephalic (short-muzzled) facial structure.

Cavapoos generally have a longer muzzle compared to purebred Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, which helps mitigate the respiratory issues associated with the latter’s brachycephalic facial structure. This makes Cavapoos generally healthier in this regard.

Exercise Needs: Cavapoos vs Mini Goldendoodles

Mini Goldendoodles: Energetic and Active

Exercise Requirements

Mini Goldendoodles are known for their energetic nature, often requiring a good amount of exercise to keep them happy and healthy. A mix of two active breeds—Golden Retrievers and Poodles—Mini Goldendoodles thrive on physical activity.

Types of Exercise

They enjoy a variety of exercises, from long walks and hikes to playtime in the yard. Some Mini Goldendoodles even excel in dog sports like agility, thanks to their intelligence and active disposition.

Mental Stimulation

Given their intelligence, Mini Goldendoodles also require mental stimulation in addition to physical exercise. Puzzle toys and training sessions can help keep their minds sharp.

Cavapoos: Moderate Exercise Needs

Exercise Requirements

Cavapoos generally require less exercise compared to Mini Goldendoodles. While they are active and enjoy playtime, their exercise needs are more moderate.

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Types of Exercise

A daily walk along with some playtime is usually sufficient for a Cavapoo. They also enjoy interactive games like fetch but are equally content with more laid-back activities.

Indoor Activities

Cavapoos are more adaptable to indoor living and can get a fair amount of their exercise needs met through indoor play, making them a good choice for apartment dwellers or those with limited outdoor space.

Sociability: Cavapoos vs Mini Goldendoodles

Mini Goldendoodles: Friendly but Sometimes Protective

Parent Breed Influence

Golden Retrievers are known for their friendly and easy-going nature, often getting along well with both humans and other animals. Poodles, while also friendly, can be more sensitive and are sometimes protective of their home and family.

Sociability Traits

As a result, Mini Goldendoodles are generally very social and get along well with people and other pets. However, they can sometimes inherit the Poodle’s protective nature, making them more cautious or defensive in certain situations, especially around their home or family members.

Cavapoos: Affable and Easy-Going

Parent Breed Influence

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are known for their affable and easy-going personalities, traits they share with Golden Retrievers. However, like Poodles, they can also be sensitive but are generally less protective.

Sociability Traits

Cavapoos usually inherit the friendly and sociable nature of both parent breeds, making them excellent companions. They are generally less protective than Mini Goldendoodles, thanks to the easy-going nature of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

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Cost Considerations: Cavapoos vs Mini Goldendoodles

Designer Dogs and Unethical Breeding

Both Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles have gained popularity as designer breeds, which unfortunately has led to an increase in puppy mills and unethical breeders looking to cash in on the trend. These breeders often neglect important aspects like health checks, proper socialization, and ethical breeding practices.

Importance of Due Diligence

When considering purchasing one of these breeds, it’s essential to:

  • Meet the parents of the puppy to gauge their temperament and health.
  • Visit the breeding facility to ensure it’s clean and well-maintained.
  • Ask for health checks and certifications for both parent dogs.
  • Look for parent dogs registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC) and puppies registered with a reputable Doodle association.

Cost Range and What You Get

While it’s possible to find Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles for as low as $500, these are often from less reputable sources and may come with a host of health and behavioral issues.

A more realistic price from a reputable breeder is around $1,500 or more. Paying a higher upfront cost is often a wise investment in the long run, as it increases the likelihood that you’re getting a healthy, well-socialized puppy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the differences in temperament between Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles?

Cavapoos and Mini Goldendoodles are both friendly and affectionate breeds that make great family pets. However, Cavapoos tend to be more laid-back and less energetic than Mini Goldendoodles. Mini Goldendoodles are more active and require more exercise than Cavapoos.

Where can I find Mini Goldendoodles for sale?

Mini Goldendoodles can be found for sale at reputable breeders, pet stores, and online marketplaces. However, it is important to do research and only purchase from a reputable breeder to ensure the health and well-being of the puppy.

How does the size of Cavapoos compare to Goldendoodles?

Cavapoos are smaller than Goldendoodles in both height and weight. Cavapoos typically weigh between 12-25 pounds and stand 9-14 inches tall, while Goldendoodles can weigh between 50-90 pounds and stand 20-24 inches tall.

Which breed is better for a calm household, Cavapoos or Goldendoodles?

Both Cavapoos and Goldendoodles can make great pets for a calm household. However, Cavapoos are generally more laid-back and require less exercise than Goldendoodles, making them a better choice for those who want a more low-key companion.

What are the differences between Cavapoos and Maltipoos?

Cavapoos and Maltipoos are both popular designer breeds that are a mix of a Poodle and another breed. However, Cavapoos are a mix of a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and a Poodle, while Maltipoos are a mix of a Maltese and a Poodle. Cavapoos tend to be larger than Maltipoos and have a more laid-back temperament.

Do Mini Goldendoodles ever calm down as they age?

Yes, Mini Goldendoodles can calm down as they age. As they mature, they may become less hyperactive and require less exercise. However, it is important to note that every dog is different and some may remain energetic throughout their lives.

BreedSizeTemperamentExercise Needs
Mini GoldendoodleMediumEnergeticModerate to High

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