The first Labradoodles were reportedly bred by Wally Conron in Australia in the late 1980′s. Wally was working with the Royal Guide Dog Association of Australia when they received a request from a blind person in Hawaii who was allergic to dogs. Since a standard poodle is generally considered a low-allergy dog, Mr. Conron bred one of the best Labrador guide dogs with a standard poodle (which is much larger than your grandma’s lap poodle). Hair and saliva samples were sent to for testing, and some of the puppies from this first litter did in fact, come back with a ‘allergy free’ result.
Labradoodles are frequently reported as being non-allergenic, or hypoallergenic, or allergy-free. You need to be aware, however, that different people react differently to different dogs. Poodles are well known for being good pets for some people who are allergic to dogs, however, there is no guarantee that this will be the case in your situation.
Over time, interest in the Labradoodle grew, until it eventually became the ‘designer dog’ that it is today. Labradoodles are still bred in Australia (you’ll see lots of references to Australian Labradoodles) as you search the web, because that is where the breed originated. Once American media began running stories about the Labradoodle in the mid to late 90′s, things really began to take off.
Ironically, Mr. Wally Conron has expressed concerns about opening a ‘pandora’s box’ when it comes to the Labradoodle. He recognizes the value, while at the same time he is concerned about the rise of the ‘backyard breeders’ who only want to make a quick buck off of the breed. This is another reason why you need to really research your breeder and make sure you’re getting one who has the best interest of the breed at heart.