Withdrawal strengths of commercially available hardwood dowels were examined in this work. Multi-grooved dowels with a straight surface pattern and with pre-glued polyvinyl acetate (PVAc) were tested. Additionally, standard dowels with different single- and multi-grooved surface patterns were also tested, which were not pre-glued. Standard dowels were bonded with two types of PVAc and one type of polyurethane (PUR) adhesive. The influence of the type of dowel, the surface pattern, the dowel diameter, and the type of adhesive used on the dowel joint strength were investigated. Lower average strengths were observed for single-grooved dowels with a spiral pattern (4.9 MPa); failures generally occurred at the first or second thread of the spiral groove. For the pre-glued dowels, there were differences in the observed strengths, which depended upon how the PVAc adhesive was activated. Lower withdrawal strengths were noted for the pre-glued dowels when they were activated by dipping them in water (3.0 MPa) versus adding water directly to the pre-drilled holes (4.7 MPa to 5.4 MPa).