The creator of the Labradoodle crossbreed said making the Labrador retriever-poodle mix is his “life’s regret,” and that he set loose “a Frankenstein monster.”

Wally Conron, 90, who first bred the mix in 1989 while working at Guide Dogs Victoria in Australia, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) in a podcast interview last week that his initial goal was to mix a poodle — which doesn’t shed — with a Labrador to provide a guide dog for a blind woman living in Hawaii whose husband was allergic to dogs.

Three dogs were born in the litter, and one went to the woman in Hawaii. News spread of the breed’s creation as Conron looked for a home for the two other puppies, he said, and the mix quickly boomed in popularity in Australia and abroad.

Looking back, Conron said he “opened a Pandora’s box” in kickstarting what has since become a well-known breed — and one of the world’s most popular “designer dogs.”


Conron told ABC that his “big regret” over his creation is that it spurred “unethical, ruthless people” to breed dogs without regard for the health effects of their offspring, leading to irresponsible breeding and many health problems for the pups.

"I released the reason for these unethical, ruthless people to breed these dogs and sell them for big bucks — that’s my big regret," he said.

Too much cross-breeding can increase the likelihood that a dog will get congenital diseases, which often continue to be passed through generations of offspring, Conron told ABC. Hip and elbow dysplasia and eye diseases are relatively common in Labradoodles, according to the Australian Labradoodle Association of America.

Now, most Labradoodles have problems, he said, and a healthy one is “few and far between.”

"I find that the biggest majority (of Labradoodles) are either crazy or have a hereditary problem," he said. "But I do see some damn nice Labradoodles."