Cockapoo Breed Highlights

A brown Cockapoo dog in the grass, basking in the sun

  • Cockapoos were the first of the “designer” crossbreeds of dogs, making their debut in the 1950s.

  • Most Cockapoos are a cross between a Poodle and American Cocker Spaniels. But when a Poodle is crossed with an English Cocker Spaniel (a separate breed from the American Cocker), it’s called a “Spoodle.” Enthusiasts of the hybrid breed have been working to create a distinction between Spoodles and Cockapoos.

  • There are four different sizes of Cockapoos. The smallest is the Teacup Cockapoo, weighing less than 6 lbs when fully grown. Toy Cockapoos are 7 to 12 lbs, with Miniature Cockapoos coming in 13 to 18 lbs. Maxi Cockapoos are often from a Standard Poodle and Cocker Spaniel parent and weigh 19+ lbs. as adults.

  • Cockapoos are a poodle mix, and while poodles and their crosses are often considered hypoallergenic (and therefore better for people who are allergic to dogs), this is not always the case. Every dog, every person, and every situation can be different. However, if a Cockapoo has inherited more of a Poodle-type coat, it will shed less than many other breeds.

Unique Personality

Black Cockapoo dog illustration for Trupanion Dog Breed Guide 

Fun-loving and affectionate, Cockapoos are a popular crossbreed for families and owners looking for a low-shedding companion. Wonderfully fluffy and ready to follow their people everywhere, this breed is a sturdy, smart, and sociable dog. While they have enough energy to tag along on adventures, they’re equally happy to settle in for a relaxing day of cuddling.

Preferred Lifestyle

Energy Level

dog energy level - medium (mall walker)

With Kids

Icon - outline of a little boy and girl

Small but sturdy, this breed can do well with children. Socialization with kids of all ages as a puppy is essential.

With Other Pets

Icon - cat and dog outline

Cockapoos can do great with other pets and animals in the home, as long as they have been socialized since puppyhood and properly introduced.

Environment

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From apartments to fenced yards, Cockapoos can adapt to any lifestyle as long as they get enough exercise and are involved in the day-to-day family activities.

Average Lifespan
(Range)

12 to 16 years

Average Size
(Range)

Small (parents determine size):

  • 7 - 30 pounds
  • 10 - 17 inches tall

Breed Group

No official breed group. Parents can be part of the Toy, Non-sporting or Sporting group.

Similar Breeds

History of the Cockapoo

Black Cockapoo dog running through the grass carrying a stick in his mouth

The Cockapoo is the original doodle! Coming onto the scene in the 1950s and 60s, this crossbreed of Poodle and Cocker Spaniel was around long before the Doodle craze that began in the 1980s. After Cocker Spaniels became increasingly sought after, thanks to pop culture hits like Lady and the Tramp, many families wanted a dog with the sweet Cocker Spaniel temperament and the lower-shedding coat of a Poodle. Breeders were happy to oblige, and the Cockapoo was born.

This playful and happy breed has been a popular “designer dog” ever since, and breeders are working towards a breed standard to receive formal recognition of the breed by official breed clubs. However, different Cockapoo associations and groups have differing beliefs as far as whether Cockapoos should be multi-generational (a Cockapoo bred to another Cockapoo) versus always a cross between a purebred Poodle and Cocker, or backcrossing a Cockapoo with a purebred Poodle or Cocker.

Cockapoo Behavior & Training

Cockapoo dog illustration for Trupanion Dog Breed Guide 

Cockapoos are incredibly intelligent, having the smarts of both the Cocker Spaniel and the Poodle. There is no way to predict how much of each parent breed’s typical training idiosyncrasies a Cockapoo will have. Beyond genetics, a dog’s behavior is also affected by environment, learning, and their individual personality. However, both parent breeds are eager to please, playful, and loyal dogs that are a joy to train.

Plays Well with Others?

  • The Cocker Spaniel parent breed is typically quite social, while the Poodle tends to be a bit more reserved when meeting new people and other animals. Like all dog breeds, the Cockapoo needs proper proactive exposure to new sights, sounds, people, dogs, and other animals as a young puppy to help prevent any future fear from developing.

TRAINER TIP

Pair meeting new people or animals with high-value training treats or a favorite toy, and keep introductions short and sweet so it doesn’t get overwhelming.


  • This breed can do well with children, as long as care has been taken to properly socialize them from puppyhood and encourage positive and respectful interactions. Young children and dogs should always be supervised, and it’s helpful for a dog to have their own “safe space” where they can go when they need some quiet time.

  • A Cockapoo can do well with other pets in the home when properly introduced and socialized from puppyhood.
Graphic - bouncing red ball image

Exercise Requirements

Cockapoos have the energy and stamina of a Spaniel and crave the active lifestyle of a Poodle. Daily exercise is needed to keep a Cockapoo at a healthy weight. Physical activity also helps prevent separation anxiety. Daily walks and playtime are excellent ways to exercise a Cockapoo, as well as playing fetch or tug.

Mental Enrichment Needs

To keep their brain sharp and prevent unwanted behaviors, Cockapoos need mental enrichment activities. Teach new tricks, attend obedience classes, join a dog sport, and provide daily dog puzzles and interactive toys. Change out toys and puzzles periodically to provide much-needed variety for these smart dogs. Cockapoo puppies will benefit greatly from brain games, as they prevent boredom and give appropriate outlets for normal puppy behaviors like chewing.

Common Behavioral Issues

Cockapoos are a breed that often suffers from separation anxiety. They love and need companionship — it’s what we bred them for! Providing your Cockapoo with positive exposure to alone time from puppyhood will help prevent or minimize any separation anxiety. It’s much easier to prevent than to treat once it’s started. Make alone time a positive and relaxing experience for your Cockapoo.

TRAINER TIP

Any time you leave your dog alone, pull out a frozen stuffed Kong or another yummy treat toy. When you return (even if only after thirty seconds), put it away until next time. This will help your Cockapoo learn that when you’re gone, amazing things happen, and they’ll make a positive association with your absence.

Fun Activities the Cockapoo Enjoys

Cockapoo puppy illustration for Trupanion Dog Breed Guide 

Cockapoos do well in many different activities:

  • Agility

  • Flyball

  • Therapy Dog

  • Nosework / Tracking

Cockapoo Coat Type

The Cockapoo can have a variation of the sleek and straighter Spaniel coat or the more wiry and curly Poodle coat. Both are low-shedding. Poodle crosses are often considered hypoallergenic (or less likely to cause an allergic reaction). But remember every dog, every person, and every situation can be different. Cockapoos come in any colors that are seen in the Poodle and Cocker Spaniel breeds.

Shedding Level

dog shedding level - 1 of 5 piles of fur

1 out of 5 piles of fur

Grooming Requirements

  • Daily Maintenance
  • Professional Grooming Required

The combination of two higher-maintenance coats from the Cocker Spaniel and Poodle means a Cockapoo requires consistent grooming to keep their coat from tangling. If your Cockapoo’s coat is allowed to grow long, it requires thorough daily combing (down to the skin) to prevent matting and tangles. Many Cockapoo owners opt to have their dog groomed in the popular “puppy cut” (a shorter length all over the body). Professional grooming should be done every 4 to 6 weeks, depending on the owner’s preference for coat length.

A Cockapoo should have their ears cleaned regularly, as this breed can be prone to ear infections thanks to their Spaniel parentage. The hair on the inside of the ears should be kept short to help promote air circulation and prevent infection. Pair ear cleaning with regular nail trimming and teeth brushing.

Introducing your Cockapoo puppy to positive and calm handling and grooming experiences will go a long way in making grooming appointments easy and stress-free.

Best Brush for a Cockapoo: Slicker brush, Pin comb, Bristle brush

Famous Owners of the Cockapoo

  • Lady Gaga (Singer)

  • Harry Styles (Singer)

  • Billie Joe Armstrong (Singer)

  • Carly Stenson (Actress)

  • Ashley Judd (Actress)

  • Sammi “Sweetheart” Giancola (Reality Star)

  • Jensen Ackles and Daneel Harris Ackles (Actors)

  • Maria Shriver (Journalist)

  • Lynda La Plante (Author)

  • Minka Kelly (Actress)

Famous Cockapoos

  • Alfie who was named Britain’s Happiest Dog in 2011

Non-Endorsement Statement: The social media posts displayed here do not imply any endorsement of these people or products, nor does it imply they endorse Trupanion or our product.

Common Health Conditions for the Cockapoo Breed

Use the chart of Trupanion claims data below to find out what health conditions happen most frequently for Cockapoos. Every Cockapoo is unique, but understanding what health conditions are likelier to occur can help you be a more prepared pet owner.

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Here's what our
dog-loving members say about Trupanion

Trupanion member Kelly

Kelly

Groton, CT

Condition: Sarcoma

The Trupanion policy paid: $18,522.39

"My golden Kelly was young when I found a softball-sized lump on Kelly’s left hind leg. Four weeks straight of radiation, six rounds of chemo and checkups every three months, including x-rays and full blood panel were needed. Because of Trupanion, I didn’t have to address the biggest deciding factor that most people face—can I afford this? I can honestly say Kelly is alive today because of the financial support Trupanion provided."

- Lori

Trupanion member Axl

Axl

Ontario, Canada

Condition: Pneumonia, Hip Dysplasia, Lameness

The Trupanion policy paid: $2,084.01

"At two, our German shepherd Axl was diagnosed with pneumonia. Trupanion took care of all our financial concerns. At four, his hip issues led to pain medications, rehabilitation and rest, which all resulted in improved pain-free movement. I’m so grateful that we chose a plan that not only covers the cost of his treatment but also any physical therapy or rehabilitation he may need."

- Nanette K.

Trupanion member Bella

Bella

Ellijay, GA

Condition: Cushing’s disease, tumor, cruciate rupture

The Trupanion policy paid: $15,283.83

"Bella was treated for Cushing’s disease and a pituitary tumor with radiation therapy. Had we not had insurance for her, the decision for her medical care would have been more difficult, as each treatment was expensive. However, because we have Trupanion, these decisions were easier. Rather, we could focus our attention on her treatment and recovery instead of the financial impact these procedures would have on our family."

- Jason P.

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