Most Cockapoos you see are first generation (that is, a cocker and poodle cross (this is called F1)), but there are increasing numbers of second and even third (any generation after first is breeding cockapoo to cockapoo). Breeding cockapoo to cockapoo is increasing as the hybrid endures and breeders continue to develop it. Breeding down through the generations helps to stabilize size and looks, with size the more important factor. For example, an 8 lb poodle and a 25 lb cocker could produce 8 to perhaps 30 lb pups (hybrid vigor can increase size as well as factoring in anything in the recent bloodline of either parent ). The 2nd generation (F2) can have the "grandfather effect", producing more of the original poodle or cocker in looks. By the 3rd generation (F3) things start to stabilize in size and looks. F2's and beyond can have more color variation as the mix of color genes becomes stronger. By F7 a breed is basically established to minimal variation and is arguably (both scientifically and within the dog fancy) a breed.
There is a very important fact to understand and remember in generational breeding: It MUST be full cockapoo to full cockapoo (that is, both cockapoo parents traced back to proper hybrid crossing to cocker and poodle). At no point can a cross of cockapoo to poodle or cocker be entered into the heritage. Some people are of the mistaken thought that breeding cockapoo to poodle or cocker produces an F2 or greater cockapoo generation - it does not. Rather, doing this skews the gene pool and anything resulting is no longer cockapoo.
As a cockapoo puppy buyer you should be more concerned with the characteristics of the individual dog than the generation. There can be some variation in any generation but if you let your breeder know what it is you are looking for in a pup they can help you select the best pup for your family. No matter the generation, as long as health, temperament and looks (which is the entire package that makes the dog) -are paid attention to, you should be fine. Let the breeders worry about breeding the generations for science and what have you - and as an owner concentrate on choosing the best dog for your family. People getting hung up on the '"perfect" specimen for any breed is what pushed so many of the known breeds into the problems they have now with health and temperament due to inbreeding - these are the things that we are working so hard to avoid in the development of the cockapoo. Just as you would not worry about what generation a cocker or poodle or any other now-known breed is if you were to choose a puppy, you shouldn't be worrying about it now as a cockapoo owner or would-be owner; the prime concern should be the best dog for you and your family.
It is most important to realize and remember that one can't take a cocker from the flea market that is aggressive, and a poodle from a free ad in the paper that is a hyper-active yappy ankle biter and expect a good pup (please understand that we are not saying that all cockers are aggressive or all poodles yappy, but just as in any breed there are better individual dogs than others and it is the better ones that need to be selected for breeding). This is why it is most important to choose a solid, reputable breeder with experience in and dedication to breeding Cockapoos.*
*Text taken with permission from North American Cockapoo Registry
This is my grandson Zach with a white and buff cockapoo puppy. He is all grown up and going to Boise State.