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The Chocolate Goldendoodle: The Complete Guide

Chocolatey. Oh so fluffy. Especially sweet. Does this sound like a description for a chocolatey treat? Actually, it’s something even sweeter—the chocolate Goldendoodle!

Are you curious about these fluffy, chocolatey confections of cuteness who are capturing the hearts and souls of their Doodle parents? Or maybe you’re the new parent of a brown Goldendoodle and you’d like to discover more about the little nougat of cuteness who’s joined your family.

Then we’re happy you’re here!

Light brown Goldendoode's face and a chocolate brown and white Goldendoodle's face with the title Chocolate Goldendoodles...Color your world happy.

My Goldendoodle dogs and I are sharing the latest on the colorful, brown Goldendoodle. Over the last 10 years, I’ve been fully immersed in all things Doodle dog. With two Goldendoodles in our pack (and two more in our extended family) and as a research hound, I’ve gained real-life experience and expertise that I’d like to share with other Goldendoodle enthusiasts.

So, let’s meet the chocolate Goldendoodle.

Brown or chocolate Goldendoodle? Which?

First, some say brown and some say chocolate when referring to this color of Goldendoodle. Both brown and chocolate terms are used interchangeably, and both are used to describe Goldendoodles that have rich, warm brown coats in various shades. I’ll use both terms in this article.

Next, to understand why some Goldendoodles have brown coats, it’s helpful to have a little background on Goldendoodles in general.

A full-grown brown Goldendoodle standing on a green lawn

Goldendoodle variety

Goldendoodles are referred to as hybrids or a crossbreeds. (As an aside, most Doodle parents skip the terminology and call them “family members.”) A hybrid or a crossbreed is an intentional cross between two different purebred dogs. Goldendoodle puppies are the offspring from two parent breeds—the purebred Poodle and a purebred Golden Retriever.

As you’re probably starting to imagine, because they have two very different parent breeds, they also have more variation in traits like size, coat type, and coat color.

That’s why there are so many types of Goldendoodles. Which brings us to the brown Goldendoodle. Let’s meet these decadent chocolate cuties.

A curly light brown Goldendoodle with tongue hanging out

What is a chocolate Goldendoodle?

A chocolate Goldendoodle is the name given to Goldendoodles with brown coat colors. It’s a fitting name because there are a wide range of colors—from milk chocolate to dark chocolate—much like chocolate candy.

Also, there are many shades of chocolate Goldendoodles. You may see a warm coca brown Goldendoodle, a rich, dark chocolate Goldendoodle, or even a brown Goldendoodle with a reddish hue. No matter the color, I think they are every shade of happy.

So where does all that chocolatey goodness come from?

What makes the Goldendoodle chocolate?

The Poodle parent breed gets much for the credit for the coat color of the chocolate Goldendoodle. The Poodle AKC breed standard includes two shades of brown: cafe au lait (a lighter brown reminiscent of coffee with extra cream) and brown. These lustrous colors of Poodles add many variations of brown to the Goldendoodle breed.

Interestingly, Poodles sport 11 official colors and 16 other combinations of colors. And the Golden Retriever sports a range of golden colors—from light golden to dark golden.

As you can probably imagine, with so much variation in coat color between the two Goldendoodle parent breeds, there are almost a rainbow of Goldendoodle colors.

Chocolate Goldendoodle coat types

A chocolate Goldendoodle, like any color of Goldendoodle, may have a straight, wavy, or curly coat.

This variation is due to the vastly different coat types of the parent breeds. The Poodle has a low-shedding, curly coat and the Golden Retriever has a high-shedding, straight coat. Thus, the Goldendoodle gene pool gets both coat types. Plus, there are other combinations in between those two coat types.

A cream Goldendoodle next to a chocolate brown Goldendoodle to show the comparison of colors

Do chocolate Goldendoodles change color?

Some chocolate Goldendoodles do change color as they age. This is a common occurence not only for chocolate coat colors, but also red Goldendoodle and apricot Goldendoodle coat colors too.

Additionally, just like our own hair can lighten when we’re out in the sun, the brown Goldendoodle’s coat may lighten due to sun exposure.

As the parent of a full-grown Goldendoodle, our red Goldendoodle’s coat color gradually changed over time. Her hair coat has lightened from her puppy days. However, she kept her darker ears and tail.

Chocolate Goldendoodle temperament

A well-bred Goldendoodle may be a smart, friendly, energetic dog who is eager to please you. Often their intelligence makes them highly trainable and quick learners.

A curly light brown adult Goldendoodle

Plus, some Goldendoodles may have the temperament to become therapy dogs—dogs who comfort those in hospitals, schools, or nursing homes.

To keep their active minds engaged and occupied, many Goldendoodles thrive when given jobs such as nose work or agility work.

On the flip side, intelligent dogs need mental stimulation. Without it, they are smart enough to come up with their own interests if they are bored. Anecdotally, I’ve heard many Doodle parents mention stick chewing as a favorite past time for idle Doodle dogs.

Chocolate Goldendoodle size

If you lined up all the Goldendoodles in your neighborhood, you’d quickly see a wide variety of sizes.

That’s because Goldendoodles can range in size from 25 pounds to 80 pounds or more.

Why so much variation?

The Poodle breed gets the credit when it comes to bringing a range of sizes to the Goldendoodle family. Poodles are one of a handful of breeds that have more than one AKC-recognized size. For Poodles, the AKC recognizes three size variations—toy, miniature, and standard.

On the other hand, the parent breed on the other side of the Goldendoodle family—the Golden Retriever—has much less variation in size. Golden Retrievers weigh 55-75 pounds, according to the AKC.

Since the Golden Retriever is a fairly large dog and the Poodle ranges greatly size, it’s only common sense that Goldendoodles will range in size too.

The Goldendoodle Association of America has set standards for Goldendoodles. They are:

Petite ~ Below 14″ from shoulder to paw. Weight: 25 pounds.

Mini ~ Over 14 inches but under 17 inches from shoulder to paw.  Mini Goldendoodles weigh 26-35 pounds.

Medium ~ Over 17 inches but under 21 inches from shoulder to paw.  Medium Goldendoodles weigh 26-50 pounds.

Standard ~ Over 21 inches from shoulder to paw. They weigh 51 pounds and up.

Chocolate Goldendoodle generations

Since there are so many varieties of Goldendoodles, some dog enthusiasts categorize them by filial generation. This is simply a naming system used to describe whether the offspring is a first generation or second generation, or even a backcross.

But it’s easier to talk dogs than terminology. So here is one example: a puppy with a purebred Poodle and a purebred Golden Retriever is sometimes called an F1 Goldendoodle, which is a first generation cross.

Let’s break it down a little more:

  • F1 Goldendoodle: 100% Golden Retriever x 100% Poodle
  • F1b Goldendoodle (first generation backcross): 100% Poodle x F1 Goldendoodle
  • F2 Goldendoodle: F1 Goldendoodle x F1 Goldendoodle OR F2 Goldendoodle x Poodle
  • F2b Goldendoodle: F1 Goldendoodle x F1B OR F2 x Poodle

Color variations of chocolate Goldendoodles

Like opening an assorted box of chocolates, there are many varieties of brown Goldendoodles. Some coat colors are a decadent dark chocolate brown, others are a creamy milk chocolate, and still others are a red velvety chocolate.

Additionally, some Goldendoodles have coats that are two different colors. This is called a parti Goldendoodle. A chocolate brown and white Goldendoodle is one example of a parti Doodle.

Also, some may even have white markings on the chest. This coat type often referred to as a tuxedo.

A parti colored chocolate and white goldendoodle

Chocolate Goldendoodle health problems

To understand some of the most common types of health problems for Goldendoodles, I checked multiple sources and compared the data.

According to ASPCA Health Insurance, the five most common health issues for Goldendoodles include ear infections, tummy upset , skin irritation, allergies, and digestive problems.

Embrace Pet Insurance lists hip dysplasia, subvalvular aortic stenosis, cataracts, and Addison’s Disease as common health issues for Goldendoodles, with the cost to diagnose and treat ranging from $1,000 to $6,000.

The third resource with statistics on Goldendoodle health conditions is Fetch. This insurance company uses 16 years of clinical health findings to identify common health conditions in dogs. Their findings site thyroid disorders, hip dysplasia, and allergies as the most common conditions in Goldendoodles.

Finally, the most common conditions most likely to occur in adult and senior Goldendoodles based on Trupanion’s dog insurance claims data are: mass, conjunctivitis, vomiting and diarrhea, mast cell neoplasm, and seizure.

A chocolate mini goldendoodle with a white tuxedo marking on chest and white beard

As a summary, according to data collected from four insurance companies, common health conditions in Goldendoodles are:

Ear infections ASPCA
Tummy upset, digestive problemsASPCA
Skin irritationASPCA
AllergiesFetch and ASPCA
Hip dysplasiaEmbrace, Fetch
Subvalvular aortic stenosisEmbrace
Addison’s DiseaseEmbrace
Thyroid disordersFetch

Nationwide study on cancer claims: Good news for Goldendoodles

Interestingly, Nationwide Insurance studied cancer claims for 1.61 million dogs between 2015 and 2021. The Nationwide analytics team shared results that showed…

“Compared to all other dogs, Goldendoodles are almost half as likely (47.4) to have a claim for cancer among Nationwide-insured dogs.” ~ Nationwide Insurance, 2022

Grooming needs of the chocolate Goldendoodle

Like all Goldendoodles, brown Goldendoodles require frequent grooming.

This is because Goldendoodles have coats that tend to shed less than other breeds. In general, the less shedding there is, the more grooming is needed to rid the coat of loose hairs that can turn into mats. Other breeds naturally rid their coat of loose hairs through shedding. But most Goldendoodles need frequent brushing and grooming to sluff off the dead hairs from the coat.

Which brings us to the question, “Are Goldendoodles high maintenance?” When it comes to grooming, the answer leans to, “yes.” However, they are not “high maintenance” in the sense that Goldendoodles are not prissy or prim, or overly demanding.

While on the subject of grooming, I’d like to give you a head’s up about the Goldendoodle puppy coat transition.

As young puppies, Goldendoodles have fine, shorter hair coats that typically don’t mat.

Pet parents may get used to easy-to-care-for puppy coats. But as Goldendoodles enter adolescence, they blow their puppy coats and the adult coat comes in.

When the adult coat starts growing in, it can take unsuspecting new puppy parents by surprise. This is because the puppy hair can get tangled with the adult coat and mats can happen almost over night.

That’s why it important to start a Goldendoodle grooming regimen early.

Frequently asked questions

Are chocolate Goldendoodles rare?

Chocolate Goldendoodles aren’t considered extremely rare. However, they are not as prevalent as cream Goldendoodles. Overall, Goldendoodles of all colors are highly desirable due to the breed’s reputation as friendly, smart, and eager-to-please family companions.

Is the chocolate Goldendoodle right for you?

If you’re looking for a canine companion who is social and wants to spend time with you, if you’re looking forward to spending time each day going for walks or enjoying activities with your dog, and if caring for your dog’s hair coat through grooming sounds like a chance to bond with your dog, then the Goldendoodle may be the best match for you.

What do those qualities look like?

  • Social/wants to be with you…Follows you to the bathroom
  • Energetic…Needs daily energy burns such as walks or games of fetch
  • Grooming…brushing daily or weekly depending on coat type to keep the coat mat free

Goldendoodles are a special mix of intelligence, energy, and sociability. With your unending love and by making them part of your family, those qualities will shine.

Thank you for getting to know the brown Goldendoodle

Thank you for stopping by HappyGoDoodle, our cozy, dog-friendly corner created for Doodle dog enthusiasts. We hope we’ve helped you get to know the chocolate brown Goldendoodle.

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