When a Hawke's Bay puppy was put up for sale this week on Trade Me with a $5500 price tag, its owner was both serious and successful.
Because any dog breed ending with an "oodle" is now fetching prices in the thousands across region, and the country.
The days of the kennel club registered purebred pooches taking centre stage in popularity and price isn't over, but now a poodle mixed breed crossing is the new goldmine for breeders.
Hastings woman Neysha Lamonte bought her "adorable" cavoodle (Cavalier King Charles Spaniel poodle cross) Puddles five years ago - having been on the lookout for a small lap dog to replace her old cat.
Lamonte purchased Puddles from an Auckland breeder for $1200 in 2016.
"I chose her because my favourite dogs are Cavalier King Charles spaniels, and poodles are very intelligent," she said. "That's the mix that she is which made her really easy to train."
For the price that cavoodle and other poodle crosses are for sale now in Hawke's Bay and around New Zealand, Lamonte said she doesn't think she would've been able to afford Puddles.
"It's a hard one because she's my baby and a family member, she's priceless to me now," she said. "It's an absurd amount to pay but they are the most loving dogs."
In Hawke's Bay there are currently three poodle crossbreeds for sale on Trade Me, two of which are the popular cavoodle.
All the Trade Me listings talk up the mixed poodle breeds, saying they have brilliant natures, are low-shedding – hypoallergenic – and look like teddies.
Currently, the most expensive dog for sale on Trade Me is a red female cavoodle puppy priced at $7000 in Wellington.
Lamonte said part of their popularity is due to their eye-catching looks.
"We get a lot of comments about how beautiful she is – she's got lovely proportions and looks like a teddy bear," she said.
So are these "designer breeds" better than a NZ Kennel Club-registered purebred?
Dogs New Zealand (formerly the NZ Kennel Club) director Steven Thompson said the organisation did not have an opinion on the hefty prices the dogs are fetching as it is an open market for breeders.
However, Thompson did say buyers should be aware there can be many health issues attached to poodle crosses.
"I can understand why people want them, they're very cute and they look awesome on Trade Me with a big Buy Now button next to it," he said. "We are seeing a lot of that."
But he warned that when buying a crossbreed you're buying a genetic mix-up.
"In a lot of breeds what you tend to find are you're getting the inherent issues with both breeds combined into one dog," Thompson said.
"You run the risk that you get a combination of this when you purchase your cavoodle."
Before buying a puppy worth thousands, the Dogs NZ director said doing background checks and asking for the sire and dam's (mother and father's) medical test results is a must.
Dogs NZ canine health and welfare officer and practicing veterinarian Dr Becky Murphy said the same health issues apply to many of the poodle crosses as to the pure breeds.
"Many people think that by crossing breeds they are producing healthier but that is simply not the case," she said.
Dr Murphy said the most common issues among these "designer breeds" are skin disease, heart disease, slipping patellas and eye disease.
"These are conditions that are common among many breeds, so out-crossing cant 'fix them'," she added.