Labradoodle inventor regrets making 'frankenstein's monster'

Portrait of an adorable Labradoodle puppy laying in the grass. (image: doranjclark/Getty)
A Labradoodle, the breed of dog which its owner considers ‘a disaster’ (image: doranjclark/Getty)

We’re afraid we have some rather upsetting news.The humble labradoodle (a cross between a poodle and a labrador) has been stabbed in the back… by none other than the very man who invented it.

Speaking with Sum of All Parts, an Australian science podcast, Wally Conran, who invented the breed, said: ‘I opened a Pandora box and released a Frankenstein monster.’ As one Twitter user pointed out, Frankenstein’s monster only became evil when it was cruelly rejected by its inventor. We beg you to rethink this, Mr Conran. ‘I find that the biggest majority are either crazy or have a hereditary problem,’ Mr Conran said.
To which the president of the Australian Labradoodle Club of America, replied ‘all dogs are crazy’. Mr Conran’s discomfort with his invention dates back to 1989, when he bred what is widely considered to be the very first labradoodle.

The decision to mix a labrador and a poodle was not based on aesthetics, nor was it ever intended to be a fashionable breed.

In fact, the labradoodle was first bred as a guide dog for a blind woman whose husband was allergic to long-haired dogs.

Given that poodles don’t shed their hair, they seemed the perfect breed to cross with a labrador (which are better suited to being guide-dogs)- and it worked.

INTERESTING FACT ABOUT YOUR PET: One survey found that 81 percent of cat owners let their felines sleep on the bed, compared to 73 percent of dog owners.

But Mr Conran soon found out that he’d made a terrible mistake – if one with fairly cute consequences. The breed caught on in popularity extremely quickly.

‘I realised what I had done within a matter of days I went to our big boss at the time and I said to him, “Look, I’ve created a monster. We need to do something about it to control it.”‘

You have to respect such ‘crazed scientist in an apocalyptic horror film’ energy from someone who, essentially, created an adorable ball of fluff.

It’s worth clarifying that Mr Conran’s problem is not so much with labradoodles themselves (it’s not a personal vendetta), and more the way that their popularity has lead to unscrupulous breeding. This can often lead to health problems for the dogs.

This isn’t the first time Mr Conran has taken to the press to slag off his own creation.

Back in 2014, he told Psychology Today: ‘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!’

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