|Labradoodle creator brands it a ‘disaster’
The creator of the Labradoodle has said it is his ‘life’s regret.’
Wally Conron crossed a Labrador with a Poodle for a blind woman whose husband was allergic to dog hair. He now believes he, ‘opened up a Pandora’s box and released a Frankenstein monster.’
He is concerned about the ‘designer dogs’ bandwagon effect it has created with the crossing of inappropriate breeds.
Mr Conron was speaking with the Australian Broadcast Network and he hasn’t ‘got a clue’ why people are still breeding them today. He believes that they are either ‘crazy’ or are plagued by health problems.
The official position of the Kennel Club is that their, ‘primary aim is to protect and promote all dogs, and crossbreed dogs, such as ‘Labradoodles’, ‘Puggles’ and ‘Cockerpoos’ etc, may be registered with us on the Activity register.’
They do acknowledge that, ‘a ‘Labradoodle’ is the result of a cross between a Labrador and a Poodle. Both of these breeds can be susceptible to hip problems and simply crossing them will only exacerbate the problem and not eradicate it.’
Sultan, born in 1989, was the world’s first Labradoodle. It was created by My Conrom to have a good temperament and to be hypoallergenic.
He was a breeding manager at the Royal Guide Dog Association of Australia and it took him three years to perfect the crossbreed.
After pressure from his boss, John Gosling, he bred Mr Gosling’s Poodle called Harley with a female Labrador called Brandy.
The breed quickly grew in popularity especially after the crossbreed was embraced by celebrities. Jeremy Clarkson, Graham Norton, Jenifer Aniston and Tiger Woods all owned Labradoodles and it has topped polls for the nation’s favourite breed.
The health of the breed has been undermined by unscrupulous breeders. He said, ‘When I’m out and I see these Labradoodles I can’t help myself, I go over them in my mind.
‘I find that the biggest majority are either crazy or have a hereditary problem. I do see some nice Labradoodles but they’re few and far between.’
The problem is that breeders, “Instead of breeding out the problems, they’re breeding them in. For every perfect one, you’re going to find a lot of crazy ones.’
Further adding to his worries are the ‘unscrupulous breeders crossing poodles with inappropriate dogs simply so they can say they were the first to do it.’
This is not the first time he has regretted his creation. In 2014 he told the Associated Press that, ‘I’ve done a lot of damage. I’ve created a lot of problems.’
In the same year he told Psychology Today that the ‘doodle’ name was a gimmick. He said, ‘People ask me, ‘Aren’t you proud of yourself?’ I tell them: ‘No! Not in the slightest.’ I’ve done so much harm to pure breeding and made many charlatans quite rich.
‘I wonder, in my retirement, whether we bred a designer dog — or a disaster!’