Email received Nov. 25, 2007 by author

Stop the Ban on Labradoodles and Other Crossbred Dogs

An Independent Member of the NSW Parliament, Clover Moore, introduced a Bill in October 2007 that will effectively ban the breeding of Labradoodles and other crossbred dogs in the state of New South Wales, Australia.

This Bill seeks to reduce the number of dogs in shelters (a very worthy aim) by prohibiting the breeding of dogs, except by recognised breeders. Unfortunately, the only breeders the Bill automatically recognises are members of the Royal NSW Canine Council, an organisation of purebred dog breeders, and one that is opposed to the breeding of crossbred dogs.

If this bill is passed, the breeding of Labradoodles (including Multigenerational Labradoodles), Spoodles and other crossbred dogs will effectively be banned. Our wonderful dogs will be outlawed!

Labradoodles were first bred in 1989 by Guide Dogs Victoria, to provide seeing-eye dogs for visually impaired people with allergies to fur and dander.  Today there are literally hundreds of Labradoodles in Australia and around the world who work as Guide Dogs, Assistance Dogs and Therapy Dogs, in addition to the many thousands of Labradoodles and other crossbred dogs that do the all-important work of family pets.

Please take action to stop the ban on Labradoodles and other crossbred dogs by:
1)      Signing the petition at

2)      Emailing your objection to

3)      If you live in NSW, write or email your objection to your local State Member (contacts details can be found at )

Please also forward this email to all your friends, and as widely as possible. The more signatures we get, the better chance we have of putting an end to this unfair discrimination.

Thank you for your help,

Melinda Sheldon
Labradoodle Owner

Submission to Clover Moore
29 November 2007

Dear Tammie & Clover,

I refer to our telephone conversation last week regarding the Animals (Regulation of Sale) Bill 2007. I understand that the proposed legislation seeks to reduce the number of homeless dogs, a very worthy aim, and there are many parts of the Bill that I applaud. However, I am concerned that the Bill unfairly discriminates against crossbred dogs.

The Bill prohibits the breeding, advertising and sale of dogs, other than by a recognised breeder. However, the only breeders this legislation will automatically recognise (Clause 13) are those who are members of the Royal NSW Canine Council Ltd, i.e. only breeders of purebred dogs. I understand that the Bill allows the Minister discretionary approval of other bodies. However, there is currently no unifying body for crossbreeders, and no provision in the proposed legislation for the recognition of individual breeders. This means that the Bill as written will effectively ban the breeding of Labradoodles and other crossbred dogs in NSW. The NSW Canine Council is very well aware of this, and says as much in its circular to members regarding the Bill.

I am not a breeder: I am a Labradoodle (Labrador cross Poodle) owner. Like many dog owners, I chose a crossbreed because I became concerned with the increasing number of health problems appearing in many dog breeds (there is a an excellent paper on this subject written by the Head of Animal Genetics at Sydney University, Dr Paul McGreevy, at ). Most families in Australia just want a happy, healthy family pet, not a pedigreed show dog. I am a scientist by training, and all the scientific research to date shows that crossbreds live longer and healthier lives (please let me know if you would like references to additional studies). To quote long-time RSPCA Australia President, Hugh Wirth on “Designer Dogs”, "the process of cross breeding to remove bad traits of some breeds and strengthening them with good traits of other breeds is producing a line of dog breeds better suited to 2008".

Labradoodles were first bred by Guide Dogs Victoria to provide a seeing-eye dog for people with allergies to fur and dander (see ). Today there are hundreds of Labradoodles in Australia and around the world who work as Guide, Assistance and Therapy Dogs, in addition to the many thousands of Labradoodles and other crossbred dogs that do the all-important work of family pets. My own dog Buffy is a Therapy Dog, and a regular volunteer at Greenwich Hospital.

The NSW Canine Council permits only purebred breeders as members, and is fundamentally opposed to the breeding of crossbred dogs. The attitudes of this organisation are outdated, deleterious to the health of dogs in this State, and not supported by the majority of animal geneticists nor by the broader scientific community. Research has shown that the majority of families here are now choosing a crossbred dog, which suggests that these attitudes are no longer accepted by the wider Australian community, either.

The NSW Canine Council may well be the peak body in terms of representing the commercial interests of purebred breeders, but it is certainly not the peak body with respect to animal welfare. Members of the NSW Canine Council are permitted by their code of ethics to:

* Sell pups to pet stores
* Sell entire litters to dog wholesalers
* Do no heath testing on their breeding dogs
* Sell dogs without any health warranty
* Sell undesexed pups as pets
* Take no responsibility if one of the dogs they’ve sold is dumped or abandoned.

This Bill readily hands recognition to these breeders, who even with the Bill in place can continue to sell their puppies to pet stores interstate. Contrast this with the many ethical Labradoodle and other crossbred breeders, who carefully place their pups in private homes, carry out genetic testing on their breeding dogs, provide comprehensive health warranties, desex all the pups they sell, and have rehoming clauses as part of their contracts etc., and yet who will be effectively be banned by this Bill.

I respectfully urge you to change the proposed legislation to remove the Bill’s pro-purebred bias and unfair discrimination against crossbred dogs, by providing a straightforward and readily accessible mechanism for the recognition of the many responsible and ethical crossbred dog breeders.

Regards etc.

The information contained on this site is in no way intended to replace that of proper veterinary advice, diagnosis or treatment.
It is meant to provide resource, so that we can better understand canine health related issues.