For many dog lovers, the poodle is the epitome of beauty and elegance. But he is by no means a “fashion doll” but a very clever, courageous, and at the same time gentle dog. No matter whether miniature poodle or king poodle, the breed is rightly very popular within its steadily growing fan base.
History & Origin
The poodle dog breed is very old and its origins have not yet been fully clarified. It is believed that the first poodles existed in ancient Rome and Persia more than 2000 years ago. In the early Middle Ages, it was mainly the French who kept poodles and from France, the breed spread across Europe. Poodles were originally hunting dogs that were used especially for hunting waterfowl. It is very likely that so-called water dogs are also among the ancestors of the poodle. The word poodle comes from old German. Puddling is the old German word for splashing around and puddle an old word for the puddle of water. The former poodle was medium-sized, it was not until later that miniature poodles, small poodles, the toy poodle, and king poodle (large poodle) emerged. The exceptionally docile and pretty animals also appeared in the vaudeville and in the circus at dog shows and the smaller poodles, whether male or female, were often the lapdogs of rich ladies at court.
Although it doesn’t look so much anymore, the poodle used to be a very versatile working dog. Water hunting was one of his main tasks. The name comes from the old German word puddling and means to splash in the water. Initially, the poodle found the ducks and other aquatic animals from the reeds and retrieved the prey for hunters.
The poodle was therefore a popular and widespread hunting dog throughout Europe. But it was also used in other areas of work. Poodles, for example, helped fishermen in Portugal or on the Atlantic coast with their work. A relationship to these four-legged friends can still be seen today in the Portuguese water dog.
The art of these very special dogs was already highly praised by Roman writers. The poodle was also the companion of circus people and jugglers for many centuries. The willingness to do the work for people and the ability to learn are legendary to this day and are highly valued. The intelligence of these dogs was particularly emphasized in the Middle Ages.
Germany, Russia, and France have long had a conflict over which is considered the country of origin of these dog breeds. The first standard was written in 1889. Today it is clear that France is valid as the country of origin for the poodle.
England and Germany, with the largest clubs for poodles, had a significant influence on the standard. The miniature poodle originated in England. For this purpose, foreign races were crossed, such as the Maltese. The poodle was probably most popular in the years between 1960 and 1975.
Origin: France (and Germany)
Classification: companion dog, formerly hunting dog
Other designations: Caniche, Barboncino
Size: Toy Poodle: Ideal height at the withers 25 cm, 23 – 28 cm are tolerated; Miniature Poodle: Height at the withers 28-35 cm; Miniature Poodle: Height at the withers 35-45 cm;
Standard Poodle: Height at the withers 45-60 cm, up to 62 cm are tolerated
Weight: Toy Poodle: 2-3 kg; Miniature Poodle: 3.5 – 6 kg; Miniature Poodle: 7-12 kg; Standard Poodle: 18-25 kg
Build Body: longer than tall, legs long and strong, proud bearing
Eyes: At the level of the stop, preferably dark, rarely amber
Ears: Drooping ears, long-haired
Coat & Color: Long, frizzy coat with a haircut (Standard Poodle) or long strings (Dreadlocks)
Special features: Does not shed, suitable for allergy sufferers
Temperament: Very intelligent, playful, friendly, affectionate
Trim coat: regularly
Health: Numerous (rare but serious) hereditary diseases
Breeding: Very widespread in the USA
The Poodle’s Appearance: Known for its particular hairstyle
Poodles have special fur that does not shed and is therefore getting longer and longer (like humans). Therefore, all types of poodles need regular hairdressing and shearing. Their fine, frizzy fur protects the dogs from moisture and cold. The head and body shape differ slightly with the subordinate blows. Overall, poodles look very elegant due to their straight and proud posture.
Overview of poodle types
Standard poodle (also called king poodle): Between 45 and 60 cm, physique similar to that of the small poodle.
Small poodle: Height at the withers between 35 and 45 cm.
Miniature Poodle: Height at the withers between 28 and 35 cm. Should look as similar as possible to the small poodle, the head is rounder and the legs shorter.
Toy poodle: The ideal height at the withers is 25 cm, sizes between 23 and 28 cm are tolerated. The toy poodle is outwardly similar to the miniature poodle.
Woolly poodles and string poodles
String poodles are rarer than wool poodles and their unusual fur is a real eye-catcher. The dogs develop long dreadlocks that need to be cut regularly. Curly poodles should wear thick, tight curls that won’t deform just by stroking them.
The head looks relatively fine and narrow, the skull shape is oval. The muzzle is almost as long as the head and very powerful. The frontal furrow is rather wide between the eyes and becomes narrower towards the top. Smaller poodle types have a rounded head and a slightly shorter snout.
The eyes can be black, brown, or amber in color. They are at the same height as the stop and are inserted at a slight angle. Long, frizzy hair grows on the eyebrows.
The nose can be black or brown.
The long, hairy ears are set low and hang over the cheeks to the sides. They become wider towards the tip and are rounded.
The head is carried erect and straight, and the neck is strong without forming a dewlap. The chest reaches to the elbows; the sternum protrudes slightly.
The upper profile line looks straight and harmonious, the back is rather short.
The tail starts relatively high and is usually carried over the back.
The legs are relatively long, very straight and strong. The body is slightly longer than it is tall, and smaller poodle breeds appear more compact overall.
Poodle haircuts: how extravagant can it be?
The poodle’s fine curls must be trimmed regularly, otherwise, they will easily become matted, smell bad, or restrict the dog’s movement. Which hairstyle your poodle should wear is largely up to you. The coat can be cut long, medium or short all over the body. The so-called fashion cuts (round-cut curls with short-cropped legs and close-cropped belly) are no longer as popular today as they used to be, as dogs have to stand still for a long time and endure the cutting. Practical, short cuts are more common. Just let the poodle grow is not an option!
The variety of colors of the poodle
Poodles are bred in many different colors, but according to the breed standard, only single-colored dogs are allowed.
Black poodles have brown eyes; the fur has no white prickly hairs. The skin of black poodles is darkly pigmented (silver). In young dogs, a brownish tinge can sometimes be seen that grows out over time.
White poodles are sometimes more sparkling-colored when they are puppies. The eyes and skin are darkly pigmented.
Silver poodles are black as puppies and are lighter in the first few years of life. The gray hair color should be distributed as evenly as possible; in some dogs the ears are darker.
Brown poodles should be as dark as possible. There are beige shades, but the color is excluded from breeding.
Apricot-colored poodles can appear reddish-fawn, orange, or cream-colored. Even with light hair colors, the skin should be darkly pigmented.
Black-and-tan: Black poodles with red or beige tails on the muzzle, eyebrows, chest, paws and underside of the body
Harlequin poodles are white with sharply demarcated black piebalds.
Brown-white or silver-white spotted poodles are not recognized by the VDH, but some clubs still specialize in breeding these “” false colors “”.
Brindle poodles and white coat colors with brindle piebalds are rare, but they are also not approved for breeding.
Sable-colored poodles have two-tone hair in beige-brown.
The development of the four poodle variants – typically German or typically French?
The name poodle goes back to the outdated German word puddeln, which is a synonym for splashing in the water. In French, the poodle is called caniche, a modification of the word cane (duck). Both names indicate its former function as a hunting dog. The poodle waited quietly by the hunter’s side and brought back wild birds that had been shot unscathed (search). Miniature poodle and toy poodle did not develop until the 20th century, when dogs were increasingly being kept as fashion accessories and companion dogs. The two larger lofts also lost their hunting instinct due to show breeding.
How long have poodles existed?
German sources report on large and small poodles as early as the 16th century. At this time, sleeping poodles with drooping fur were already being kept as herding dogs.
In the 1930s France took responsibility for the pure breeding of the animals. The miniature poodle was created, a salon variant of the small poodle.
The even smaller toy poodles have been recognized as a separate type since the 1990s.
Waterdog of unknown origin
International breed clubs disagree about whether the poodle comes from Germany or France. English and American breed clubs indicate Germany as the country of origin. The VDH (Association for German Dogs) is based on the information provided by the FCI – here France was specified as the country of origin. Possible ancestors of the modern poodle are the Hungarian Puli dogs and the French barbets.
The poodle as the ancestor of many modern curly hairs
Poodles were used to breed most of the European Schnauzer breeds (Giant Schnauzer, Medium Schnauzer, Miniature Schnauzer).
Many Bichon dogs are closely related to poodles (Bichon Frize, Maltese, Bolognese, Lowchen).
Because of their unusual fur, poodles are often used for breeding so-called designer dogs (hybrid breeds from two different purebred dogs). Hybrid breeds such as Poogle (Poodle and Beagle), Aussiedoodle (Poodle and Australian Shepherd), or Corgipoos are popular in the USA.
Genes almost untouched for centuries
The rich wool fur is complicit in the prejudices attached to the poodle due to the extravagant hairstyles. But it’s also a blessing because changing a hairstyle is only done externally with the scissors. The poodle’s appearance has changed over time, but it has only ever affected his hairstyle and never his genes.
Since the poodle has hardly been genetically modified over the centuries, it was also of interest for scientific behavioral research. So it came to research purposes of breeding between poodle and wolf.
The poodle is a very light and harmoniously built dog that can reach a great age. A scientific study by Dr. Helga Eichelberg from 1996 shows that the poodle among dogs (including mixed breeds) can on average reach the highest age. The longevity of the poodle proves that it cannot be counted among the so-called torture breeds. In order to maintain the healthy poodle, however, it is important that reputable breeders go to work, who are committed to ensuring that the regulations of the breed clubs go in the right direction. The top priority should always be maintaining health, not beauty. The advice of geneticists to breed with lines that are as unfamiliar as possible for the sake of health should be followed, because this is the only way to effectively contain certain hereditary diseases, the spread of which has not yet been fully researched (e.g. epilepsy, HD, allergies and patella problems). The retinal disease (PRA) that leads to blindness has now been brought under control through the prescribed genetic tests.
Today poodles are almost exclusively family dogs and show dogs. The standard poodles are also used as avalanche dogs, search dogs, guide dogs, and therapy dogs. This makes him one of the dog breeds that have established themselves as modern working dogs and are used in particular in the social sector.
Some people underestimate poodles when it comes to the performance and intelligence of dogs. Working with fishing nets and duck hunting were extremely complicated. The poodle met these requirements with its extraordinary cleverness.
Occasionally, circus people found this out in the Middle Ages. Today the poodle is an excellent family dog. The breed is also suitable for dog sports. Many poodles are also trained to be professional guide dogs for the blind.
These fur noses are considered to be particularly intelligent. The ability to learn is above average, and the animal shines with a very high level of social competence. A poodle will always seek mental challenge and exercise.
Usually, the breed does not require permanent activity from its fellow human beings. It usually looks different with the lively miniature poodle.
In principle, four-legged friends are suitable for every lifestyle because they are adaptable on the one hand and friendly on the other. Both single people and families are enthusiastic about the poodle. Even so, the poodle always keeps its own head and is a spirited dog.
Today poodles are known in four sizes in the FCI countries: the large poodle (45 to 62 cm), the medium poodle (35 to 45 cm), the miniature poodle (28 to 35 cm), and the toy poodle (23 to 28 cm). In the United States and England, poodles are only bred in three sizes. Our miniature poodles are counted among the middle poodles there. They call these “miniatures”.
What is striking is the lightweight of the poodle. A standard poodle with a shoulder height of around 60 cm often only weighs 20 to 25 kilos. The medium poodle, which is 20 cm smaller, weighs around 7.5 kilos. The dwarfs often weigh only around 5 kilos and the weight of the small toy poodle will be between 2 and 4 kilos. These “flyweights” probably also contribute to the fact that the poodle can often reach very old age.
The first poodles were often two-tone. The official FCI standard has prescribed monochrome poodles since 1936, while nationally in many countries the two-tone poodles are also permitted at exhibitions. But they are still waiting for official recognition from the FCI. The spotted poodles are called harlequins or parti-poodles and the black-and-tans show a coat pattern like we know it from the Doberman, for example. Originally only the colors white, black and brown were officially described in the FCI standard. In 1966 the silver-gray color was added and ten years later the apricot poodles are officially approved. Since 2007 the “red” poodles have also been listed as a standard color variant under the color “fauve”.
There is a specialty with the silver poodles. They are born black and within about six months the color changes to silver gray. This gene, which brings about the early graying, should be avoided as far as possible in the other poodle colors. The colors brown and apricot are a challenge for the grower because not all of them can keep their strong colors into old age. But don’t forget that maintaining good health is more important than good color. With this in mind, the regulations of the poodle club have also been relaxed in recent years. In order to expand the gene pool, special permits are now being issued for mating between different colors, such as brown x black or black x white, or silver x white. In the USA, colors have always been mixed together.
In the case of the white poodles, skin problems are perhaps a little more common, and in the case of teary eyes, the white fur turns red in the areas under the eyes that are wetted by the tear fluid. Even with allergies, certain areas of the fur on the white poodles turn reddish. We can see the same reaction with the red hair under the eyes in the silver poodles.
The temperament & essence of the poodle
The character of the poodle is very balanced. Dogs of this breed are also very intelligent and inquisitive, affectionate, cuddly, and almost always in a good mood. He has no aggressive behavior, is playful, and is also very empathetic. That makes him the perfect playmate for children, beginners get on well with him, for older people he is also ideal because his urge to move is not particularly pronounced. But sporty, active people also have fun with the poodle, it is very suitable for dog sports such as agility and obedience. Poodles are easy to keep in the apartment, even if they enjoy a house with a garden and free-range. Almost all of them enjoy driving a car, are not afraid of the traffic or the crowds, and are happy to be around everywhere. In short, poodles are really ideal and easy-going family dogs.
In dealing with family and children
The well-behaved and lovingly kept poodle is absolutely fond of children, gentle and affectionate. His stimulus threshold is high enough not to let himself be stressed, he loves to play, can be taught many tricks, and goes along with every nonsense. On the one hand, it is strong enough to endure a hard nudge, but on the other hand, it is not so big that older children cannot guide and control it.
In dealing with strangers
The poodle is also very friendly and devoted to strangers. Practically everyone, including foreign visitors, is greeted with jumps of joy and wagging their tails. Nevertheless, the breed is also suitable as a guard dog, because poodles are brave and, if need be, defend their family and their territory. When someone stranger enters the poodle’s territory, there is usually a lot of barking.
When dealing with other dogs
The poodle is reserved and friendly towards other dogs. He prefers to avoid any argument and his motto seems to be: The smarter gives in. Here, too, it collects its plus points compared to other dog breeds, if you are careful to take a four-legged friend into the family that is as uncomplicated as possible.
When dealing with other pets
Cats, guinea pigs, birds, and other pets don’t need to be afraid of the family poodle either. He’s curious and sniffed and observes them, but he’s just too nice to even bend a hair or a feather for them.
Urge to move
Poodles are generally keen to move about, but not necessarily “high-performance athletes”. You don’t have to walk him for hours like with a husky, although he would not show any weakness even on a tough hike of several hours. Even so, his family should have enough time to look after him. Poodles are passionate about retrieving, they also like to wade in the water and are avid swimmers. The docile poodle loves agility and dog dance as well as many other dog sports.
The hunting instinct
Although the poodle was originally a hunting dog, most animals in the breed no longer have strong hunting instincts. All they have left is the desire to fetch. Whether ball, stick, favorite toy, or food bag, they chase after everything and bring the objects back to the thrower with enthusiasm. Most of the breed representatives can be let off the leash at suitable places, they are generally quite obedient and easy to access. Anyone who has already trained with their puppy in the dog school can steer any remaining hunting instincts in the right direction right from the start.
Poodle: Some Information
The poodle is a well-proportioned and harmoniously built dog that is now available in four different sizes.
- The smallest poodle is the toy poodle. He has a shoulder height of less than 28 cm.
- The second smallest poodle is the miniature poodle with a shoulder height of 28 to 35 cm.
- It is followed by the small poodle with over 35 to 45 cm.
- All poodles over 45 cm shoulder height are called standard poodles or royal poodles.
- Most of them are two feet tall or even larger.
The different species also differ considerably in terms of weight. The weight of the small toy poodle is around 5 to 6 kilograms (male) and the weight of the male king poodle can easily reach 25 kilograms. The appearance of all species of the poodle is practically the same, only the size varies.
The fur is soft, woolly, dense, and finely curled and grows constantly, which is why it has to be shorn again and again. The physique is very graceful, the ears are large and the tail is hanging high. The coat colors are black, white, brown, silver-gray, apricot, and red. In some countries, national breed associations have also recognized two-tone poodles as purebred. In the Czech Republic and Austria, for example, there are also pure-bred poodles in the colors black and white (harlequin) and black and tan (black-tan). However, these are not recognized by the FCI. The poodle’s eye color is black, brown, or amber.
Despite their rather delicate appearance, poodles are very enterprising and playful dogs. Even the smaller guys need a lot of activity. They are among the most intelligent dog breeds in the world and are very sensitive to their environment. Because of their friendly and affectionate nature and their high willingness to learn, poodles are often trained as therapy dogs or guide dogs for the blind.
The gentle companion
All poodle types make great family dogs. They get along with children and other pets and are friendly towards strangers. The dogs are also very careful with babies and small children. Large poodles should not play unsupervised with young children due to their weight. All guys are very affectionate. They have a good sense of the mood of their keeper and they comfort, try to settle disputes, or guard ailing family members.
Which poodle type fits which holder?
All poodle types can live in urban or rural areas. Miniature poodle and toy poodle can also live in smaller apartments.
As a single owner, you have to pay a lot of attention to your poodle. Small guys may be allowed as office dogs.
Larger types are often held by retirees and families. In addition, small and royal poodles are suitable as protection dogs or guide dogs for the blind.
Upbringing and keeping: employment opportunities for hunting dogs without the hunting instinct
Because poodles have been kept mainly as companion dogs for many generations, they have almost completely lost their hunting dog characteristics. Few dogs feel the urge to chase birds, squirrels, or other wildlife, or to chase after wildlife. What remains is the irrepressible joy of retrieving. Owners can use this play instinct to train the dogs for different tasks.
A dog with many skills
Poodles love water and are gifted water sports enthusiasts. Dock diving, dog surfing and just fooling around in the water are especially popular with the taller guys. Smaller poodles are sometimes afraid of water and have to be motivated with rewards to jump into the cold water.
The favorite pastime of most poodles is fetching. Once they have learned to catch balls, frisbees, or food bags, they can hardly get enough of them.
In classic dog sports such as agility and obedience, poodles often occupy very good places.
The clever dogs quickly get bored of simple intelligence games. It can be complex toys for “professionals”.
The Irresistible One
Big or small, all poodles have a confident demeanor. The head and tail are carried proudly. The light-footed prancing walk on the little paws looks very graceful. The chest is well developed and the parallel fore and hindquarters are well angled and well-muscled. The narrow head with the long muzzle looks elegant, the chin is pronounced and the dark almond-shaped eyes convey a fiery and lively expression. A scissor bite that is as complete as possible with good throat and lip pigment is desirable. The face is framed by the close-fitting and well-fringed lop ears. The soft curly fur and the playful and relational temperament of the poodle look very appealing.
Unfortunately, there are always people who believe that such a conspicuously coiffed dog is no use. However, the pictures shown here will show you that this is not the case. The poodle doesn’t care how it’s sheared. He shows himself in every hairstyle as a proud dog who likes to go out of his way to please his owner. There is no need to adopt a military tone in raising the poodle. He prefers to respond to quiet commands.
Even John Suter from Alaska initially believed that the poodle was primarily a spoiled sofa dog until he had to look after such a bundle of energy. Then he suddenly changed his mind. He was so enthusiastic about the temperament and intelligence of this dog that he got it into his head to become a poodle owner himself and to train these poodles to be sled dogs. He did the unbelievable and won many sled dog races in Alaska with his team of poodles. He came on the podium 90 times with his poodles. Then he took part with his team of poodles three times in the almost 2000 kilometer long Iditarod sled dog race, which he was able to finish successfully in midfield. That was in the years 1989 to 1991. He has thus provided proof that the poodle is also capable of great achievements.
How great is a poodle’s urge to move?
Even small poodle types are not just lapped dogs and have to explore the world beyond the garden fence. The walking laps do not have to be as long as with the two larger poodle types, but overall each dog should be active for at least one hour a day. For larger poodle types, simply going for a walk is not enough – you can satisfy your dog’s urge to move with outdoor fetching games. Once your dog has learned that playing is part of going for a walk, he will demand a few throws with each round. Introduce fixed playing times for a regular daily routine.
Care, nutrition, and health of the poodle: Visits to the hairdresser are compulsory
The poodle’s coat needs regular grooming because of its special characteristics. The hair does not need to be trimmed, it is regularly shorn or cut. Standard poodles reach relatively old age, averaging 11.5 to 12 years. Smaller types usually get a little older (up to 15 years). A prerequisite for a long poodle life is species-appropriate housing. Many diseases are also hereditary and can be prevented by a good selection of breeds.
Hereditary diseases in the poodle
- Heart disease
- Eye diseases (PRA, cararact)
- Sebadenitis (autoimmune disease affecting the sebum glands)
- Addison’s disease (cortisol deficiency, can be fatal if left untreated)
- Degenerative myelopathy (degenerative disease of the spinal cord, leads to paralysis and spasticity)
- Neonatal encephalopathy (severe malformation of the cerebellum in puppies, is fatal)
- Von Willebrand disease (bleeding disorder)
- Bone and joint problems (patellar dislocation, hip dysplasia)
- Stomach torsion (in larger types)
Tips for serious poodle breeding
In the case of large poodles and small poodles, the breeder should pay particular attention to joint and bone problems. Neonatal encephalopathy is also more common in the large poodle types. Cases of this fatal malformation must be noted in the family tree.
With dwarf and toy poodles, no signs of dwarfism should be visible (crooked legs, apple head, underbite).
The puppies and their parents should be examined and supervised by a veterinarian.
Puppies have to spend their first weeks of life near their mother and siblings. The handover takes place eight weeks after the birth at the earliest.
Care and attitude
For a poodle, grooming includes regular combing. If you don’t do that, the soft, woolly fur becomes matted very quickly. It is important to get the poodle used to the comb and brush from an early age so that the dog looks really well-groomed. However, care should be taken to ensure that the dog does not find the procedure uncomfortable. In addition, constantly growing fur should be shorn again and again. This is best done every 6 to 8 weeks. How the clipping is done and what the dog’s appearance is like afterward depends on personal taste. In the past (and still today) there were quite crazy poodle hairstyles, in which the legs and snouts of the animals were practically shaved and silly pompoms and pompoms were left on other parts of the body.
Huge crowns on the heads of both male and female dogs were once fashion. Whether such a poodle looks really good is an open question and you cannot ask whether he thinks himself beautiful. But there are also very sensible and practical shear variants and every good poodle hairdresser is sure to have them. The poodle’s eyes and ears must also be checked and groomed regularly. The large lop ears mean that ear wax is formed more often, which must be removed carefully, the deep-set and unprotected eyes of the animals tend to be contaminated, which must also be removed.
The hunting dog
There was a time, up until the 19th century when the poodle had an exceptionally good reputation. At that time it was a popular hunting dog, mainly used for duck hunting and its qualities were highly praised by hunters and cynologists.
Today the poodle is about to regain that fame. More and more people are discovering the all-rounder among dogs in the poodle. But it is not really trendy, it is at most an insider tip and that is a good thing because the quality of the breed usually suffers when there is high demand.
Roots in the Middle Ages
The first poodles were big dogs. The roots of the poodle probably go back almost to the Middle Ages and the exact origin can no longer be fully traced. The word “poodle” is said to be related to the word “puddle” (puddle) and it connects this dog with the water. In England, the word “poodle” was mentioned in writing for the first time in 1643, in connection with a large white woolly dog that is said to have come from a noble German breed and that was given as a gift to Prince Rupert. At that time, the poodle was apparently already a household name in Germany.
The first standard for the standard poodle was established in Berlin in 1880. If you look in the old SKG stud books, you will find the poodle entries under the hunting dogs in the first volumes. It was not until 1936, when the FCI was officially recognized, that the poodle was assigned to Group 9 as a companion dog.
The fact that the poodle is now considered a French dog breed is thanks to the commitment of Mademoiselle Jeancourt-Galignani, who had worked intensively on the poodle for many years. Jeancourt was president of the French poodle club for a long time and attributes the poodle to the water dogs or, more precisely, to the barbet. She assumes that the different sizes arose from the medium poodle, while at that time the German cynologists were of the opinion that all poodles go back to the standard poodle and that its origin is Germany. If the Second World War hadn’t broken out, the poodle would probably also be officially recognized as a German dog breed today. In retrospect, it is difficult to find hard evidence for a rectification. It is also possible that the poodle emerged from a mixture of water, shepherd, and hunting dogs in different countries at the same time.
Due to its clown-like, happy nature, its ability to learn quickly, and its enormous mobility, the poodle was one of the favorite dogs of showmen at fairs as early as the 17th century.
The stately poodle was also a very popular hunting companion in royal families. In German-speaking countries, the term “Konigspudel” is still popularly known for the standard poodle. In noble houses where small bichons were kept as lap dogs, there were also mating between poodles and Maltese, Bolognese, or bichons frisés. This explains the origins of the smaller poodles.
Raising the Poodle
Poodles are considered uncomplicated and easy to train dogs. You want to please even as a puppy and do everything to please masters and mistresses. They also understand extremely quickly and can remember an infinite number of commands. It is said that poodles are sensitive enough to respond to the mood of their people. Still, it can’t hurt to go to dog school with a young poodle. Meeting other dogs and getting to know all kinds of situations makes the educational work even more effective and relaxed.
The Poodle’s Coat
The poodle’s coat is a distinctive feature of this breed of dog. It has the great advantage that the poodle does not have any fancy hair stuck to the clothes or carpet. They all get stuck in the brush or comb when combing. In addition, it is very pleasant that the woolly poodle does not give off a bad dog odor and that it can hardly cause allergies to dog hair in humans. But you should know that with poodles you don’t have to accept going to the dog salon as a luxury, but as necessary care. Shortening the fur is necessary to give the poodle a clear view. The wool fur should be brushed regularly so that it does not become matted. Cutting back wool has been known for a long time. There are, for example, Roman coins that show poodle-like dogs in a lion’s line. This strange-looking hairstyle is said to have made swimming easier for the wool-haired dog.
The more offensive lion shear was the original and for a long time the only shear of the poodle. Apparently, there was also a time when this lion shear corresponded to the zeitgeist of the time. The Lowchen or the Portuguese Water Dog is still exhibited in this shear today. Since 1966, other more normal shear types have also been officially allowed to be exhibited for poodles, but unfortunately the chances of getting one of the first places in the show ring with a normal coiffed poodle are very slim. Most beauty judges love the extravagance. They think they bring out this elegant dog even better. Before 1966, the poodle could only be exhibited in the lion row. During the Second World War, all poodles that were bred with in Germany had to be coiffed in the lion’s curl. All other shears were considered “un-German” at that time and poodles sheared differently were not permitted for breeding. Fortunately, people have become more sensible about this today. Today there are no rules for the happy domestic dog-poodle on how to shear him. You can also have a poodle sheared in a short-haired curly hairstyle without any problems, as you do with the Lagotto or the poodle mixes.
The appearance of the poodle depends entirely on its hairstyle. But it should be clear to everyone that the hairstyle has no influence on the nature of the dog and yet the poodle probably captures most of the prejudices because of his extravagant hairstyles, in which he is often shown at dog shows. The poodle first came into disrepute when it was shown as a string dog as a curiosity at the first dog shows at the end of the 19th century. His floor-length felt cords were a hindrance to him, and so he could hardly lead a dog-friendly life. With that, many lost interest in the poodle. Just imagine how much time it took for a dog like this to dry his felt pouches, which were soaked in the rain. Originally, the string poodle and the wool poodle were judged in separate rings at the exhibitions. Later it became clear that the Schnürenpudel and the woolly poodle are the same dog breed, only the grooming was different. Today you rarely come across a poodle that is cared for in a lace-up fur. His felt cords have to be neatly separated from one another down to the skin so that the skin can breathe. With today’s string poodles, the felt strings are kept at a reasonable length.
The second time the poodle fell into disrepute because it became the world’s most popular dog in the 1950s and 1960s thanks to its new hairstyle. At that time, Hans Thum created the classy Karakul cut; Ears, tail, and back were shorn short, the face was adorned with a woolly beard and on the legs, the fur was allowed to grow longer, which was nicely leveled out in the transition on the body. This new hairstyle was followed by the pleasing fashion style with the hairy ears, the sheared face, and the pompom on the tail. Because of these new, more natural hairstyles and because of his pleasant demeanor, the poodle has become a favorite dog for many. Everything that had rank and name showed itself with a poodle. Unfortunately, it is harmful for every breed of dog if it is so sought after, because dubious breeders who lack the necessary love for dogs also get to work.
Vulnerabilities & Common Diseases
In the standard poodle, as in almost all large dog species, hip dysplasia can occur. In the case of hip dysplasia, the veterinary clinic can set the course for a symptom-free life in young dogs. However, so that future puppies are already born healthy, every dog that is used for breeding is examined for possible signs of hereditary disease. The smaller poodle breeds occasionally suffer from a knee joint dislocation, and a few small poodles or toy poodles have a hereditary eye disease, the prcd-PRA, or progressive retinal atrophy. This disease can also be ruled out by testing the parent animals. Poodles generally get very old, and dogs aged 15 or 16 are no exception. A visit to the veterinary clinic or the vet for a check-up is definitely worthwhile.
The Talented All-rounder
What makes the dog a poodle is its happy and very people-oriented nature and its fiery temperament. The poodle is particularly exuberant when he is happy. He can move almost as well just on his hind legs as he can on all fours and his jumping power is enormous. So it is not surprising that a miniature poodle managed to get the world champion title in agility. It was the white miniature poodle, Pebbles, who was honored as a world champion team in Basel in 2006 together with Martin Eberle.
With his innate playful instinct, the poodle can easily be motivated for many things. There was a time when the French customs authorities in La Rochelle also trained miniature poodles to be drug detection dogs. These were used in tight spaces where a large dog would not have access. The miniature poodle bitch Siri from Paul Birrer from Basel also proved her skills when she rescued an elderly woman in the dense forest. She got lost in the forest and lay in the bushes for a whole night. Siri noticed this on her morning walk and she barked until her owner also saw the woman lying on the ground. He notified the hospital and the police and so the woman was saved thanks to Siri.
Among the medium and large poodles, there are those who have already passed the demanding rescue dog test. Also among the guide dogs for the blind, there are more and more standard poodles that have successfully completed this training. In the guide dog school in Liestal, more than 25 poodles have already learned to guide the blind, and in the Iltztaler REHA dog school run by Maria Gerstmann (A), in addition to the guide poodle and the therapy poodle, a poodle is currently being trained as a seizure warning dog. The first signal dog to report to its deaf master when the house bell or the phone rang was an American standard poodle. Several poodles have also been trained to be therapy dogs and guide dogs for the blind in the Kynos Foundation in Germany, “Dogs Help People”.
Not only in the circus arena it is often poodles that show their skills, but dog dancing is also an activity that poodles of all sizes can enjoy. In Germany, there are even poodles that come to the fore in tournament dog sports. Poodles have also achieved remarkable results in obedience and people who like to hike will be amazed at the poodle’s stamina.
In the USA and Canada, more and more poodles are being trained for their original task, that is, they are making themselves useful as eager helpers when hunting ducks. Courses are also offered there to train poodles to be herding dogs.
You Have to Know That
Even today there are poodles with a pronounced hunting instinct. This shows that the poodle has essentially remained a normal dog.
When the poodle is around six months old, care must be taken to ensure that there is free space for the second canine teeth. As soon as the second canine teeth have erupted and the corresponding milk teeth have not yet fallen out, these milk fangs must be pulled by the vet under anesthesia. With this intervention, a later misalignment of the canine teeth (canine crowding) can usually be prevented. This is a problem that can also occur with other small and midget dog breeds and mixed breed dogs.
In all lop-eared dogs, hair must be freed from the ear canals from time to time. Earache is usually announced by shaking the head. You should also have your anal glands checked at the vet or at the dog salon every few months. In addition, the poodle is better off if you don’t let its claws get too long. Despite enough exercise, these tend to be too long.
In winter when there is wet snow, its fur can become an obstacle because heavy snowballs could form on the legs in the woolen fur. You have to free the poodle from these lumps of snow before he tries to eat snow himself, because his self-help could lead to intestinal inflammation. The powder snow, which falls at temperatures below freezing point, does not cause any problems for the poodle either.
It will be clear to everyone that you don’t have a poodle shaved completely in the cold winter. There is also no shame in putting a sweater or dog coat on a shorn poodle in winter. Poodles on the move rarely freeze. But they start to freeze when they have to wait somewhere in the cold. The age of the poodle also plays a role. Young and old poodles freeze faster because their fur is not thick enough.
Since the poodle lacks greasy outer hair, it can easily be bathed more often with a mild shampoo than is usual with other dog breeds. For example, he is bathed before every haircut in the dog salon. Its fur is combed as it dries. The stretched fur is easier to cut into the right shape.
In general, the poodle prefers cold rather than warm weather. But his fur should not be cut completely bald, even in summer, because otherwise, he will lack the necessary sun protection for his skin.
Regular brushing is part of the necessary grooming of poodles.
Toy Poodle Dog Breed
Country of origin: France
FCI: Group 9, companion and companion dogs
Size: 24 – 28 cm
Weight: bitches: up to 3 kg, males up to 4 kg
Physique: athletic, slim
Head: narrow snout, slightly slanted eyes, lop ears
Fur: finely ruffled
Coat colors: black, white, brown, gray, apricot
Character: intelligent, friendly
Life expectancy: 15-17 years
The toy poodle has a cute appearance. He looks like a plush toy dog. But in the muscular body, there is a persistent, intelligent athlete.
Toy poodle origins and breed history
Poodles were originally used as retrieval dogs for water hunting. The fur, designed as a lion’s line, enabled improved locomotion in the water. The front part of the body was protected from the cold by hair. In the 19th century, the breed changed from working dogs to society dogs. In the homes of French nobles, the poodle was very popular because of its appearance and friendly demeanor. To refine the coat, spaniels were crossed. At the end of the 19th century, poodles began to be bred in middle-class homes. In 1896 the Munich Poodle Club was founded. In 1945 France was recognized as the country of origin of the dog breed. In addition to the small poodle, the miniature poodle was also bred. Toy poodles and miniature poodles have long been considered a common breed. It was not until 1985 that the toy poodle was recognized as a breed in its own right.
Toy poodle temperament and creature
The toy poodle is one of the most intelligent dog breeds. He has a balanced, friendly and happy nature. He is always in a good mood and is also ready to play the “family clown”. Toy poodles are sensitive and communicative. You can quickly sense upset in the family. If the devoted and loyal toy poodles get too little attention and care, they react jealously and moodily. You want to be the focus of his family.
Toy poodles are sensitive to loud noises. They express their displeasure by barking for a long time. In unfamiliar situations, the toy poodle reacts nervously and tends to be overly anxious.
Interesting facts about the Toy Poodle attitude
The toy poodle can also be kept in small apartments. Since it can slip through small openings, it is important to secure stairs and balconies. However, he needs regular, long walks and exercise to keep his muscles healthy.
Constant occupation with intelligence games, such as foraging games, or tracking, are a basic requirement for a happy dog life for a dog with a high IQ. The toy poodle learns quickly from its mistakes and is easy to train. But there has to be consistency. If no fixed limits are set, the small dog reacts insecurely and only follows commands when it suits him.
The fur needs to be brushed and combed daily. The hair grows constantly, there is no change of coat in spring or autumn. Therefore, the toy poodle is also well suited for allergy sufferers. In addition, a dog grooming salon should be visited on a regular basis.
The toy poodle needs species-appropriate, balanced food with a protein content of at least 50%, 15 grams of meat per day are required per kg of body weight. The rest of the ration can consist of vegetables, fruits, and grains. Chews clean teeth and gums.
Diseases typical of the breed
- Poodles are not prone to disease.
- Occasionally, lameness of the hind legs occurs due to patellar luxation (the kneecap slips) or Legg-Calvé-Perthes syndrome (the head of the femur dies due to insufficient blood supply).
- The eyeballs can be too small, the tear duct is missing. In some dogs, entropion occurs (the lower eyelid curls inward).
- The cartilage of the windpipe is only weakly developed (tracheal collapse).
- In a Fallot tetralogy, both heart chambers are connected by a hole in the septum, and the right heart muscle wall is thickened.
- Because of the short snout and the closely spaced teeth, the toy poodle is prone to inflammation of the gums and dental diseases.
- Often ear infections occur due to the high production of wax in the ears.
- Toy poodles are loyal companions who enrich the lives of their owners.
Standard Poodle Dog Breed
- Breed: poodle
- Country of origin: France
- FCI: Group 9, companion and companion dogs
- Size: 45 – 60 cm
- Weight: bitches: up to 25 kg, males up to 30 kg
- Physique: athletic, slender, slightly curved neckline, tail set high on loin level
- Head: narrow snout with parallel lower jaws, slightly slanted eyes, drooping ears
- Fur: woolly, finely ruffled
- Coat colors: black, white, brown, gray, apricot
- Temperament: intelligent, friendly, loyal
- Life expectancy: 12-15 years
Standard poodle origin and breed history
The first written mention of the “beautiful poodle” can be found in 1555. The Caniche Royal was originally used for duck hunting. The standard poodle was shorn in the area of the hind legs and belly so that the fur did not hinder the movement in the water. The hair at the front of the body was retained to protect the dog from the cold.
In the 19th century, the standard poodle dog breed managed to transform from a working dog to a companion dog. In France, the dog was very popular with aristocrats because of its friendly character. Towards the end of the 19th century, the royal poodle also found its home in townhouses. By crossing in spaniels, the coat was adapted to the new purpose. The Poodle Club was founded in Munich in 1896. After the Second World War, France was recognized by the FCI as the country of origin and entrusted with the development of further breed standards.
Standard poodle temperament and essence
The standard poodle is sporty, intelligent and eager to learn. He demands sufficient care and employment. The standard poodle enjoys learning tricks. Family ties are paramount to him. He likes to cuddle. Because of its strong self-confidence, the royal poodle needs consistent training. He is reluctant to give up what he has learned incorrectly. The happy, even-tempered dog is a good guardian who will always protect his family. The royal poodle is patient and friendly towards children.
Interesting facts about the standard poodle husbandry
The standard poodle has retained its hunting instinct. Anti-hunting training should therefore be started in the first few months. The joy of retrieving has also been preserved. In order to avoid boredom, games of skill can be organized during the walks. Intelligence toys provide enough intellectual activity in the home.
Since hair is constantly growing, a dog salon should be attended regularly. At home, the standard poodle needs to be combed and brushed every day. The royal poodle hardly loses any hair, and there is no change of coat. Because of this property, the dog is also suitable for allergy sufferers.
The food should be rich in protein (at least 50%). 15 grams of meat are required per day and kg of body weight. The rest of the feed portion is made up of vegetables, fruits and grains, or rice. Dried chews and meat bones support natural teeth cleaning and prevent gum inflammation.
Standard poodles have stable health. Nevertheless, some hereditary diseases occur.
- In hip dysplasia, the pelvic socket is too shallow to accommodate the femoral head. The gait is unsteady due to the instability in the joint. Parent animals with HD are not allowed for breeding.
- In dilated cardiomyopathy, a ventricle widens. The heart muscle relaxes, the heart fails.
- One of the most common blood disorders is van Willebrand disease. Blood coagulation is disturbed by the absence of various factors.
- If the body’s immune system attacks the sebum glands of the skin (sebaceous denitis), the hair falls out completely.
- In addition, the king poodle tends to Malassezia dermatitis. The yeast fungi, which normally only occur in small quantities on the skin, multiply profusely and cause chronic, itchy skin inflammation.
- Ear infections are common due to increased production of earwax.
- A dreaded condition is gastric torsion. Gas is formed as a result of incorrect fermentation in the gastrointestinal tract, and the stomach turns. An emergency operation is necessary.
King Poodles are watchful companions who see their family through thick and thin.
Miniature Poodle Dog Breed
- Breed: Poodle
- Country of origin: France
- FCI: Group 9, Companion and Companion Dogs
- Size: 28-34cm
- Weight: bitches: up to 5 kg, males up to 7 kg
- Body type: athletic, slim
- Head: narrow snout, slightly slanting eyes, hanging ears
- Fur: woolly, finely curled
- Coat colors: black, white, brown, silver, apricot, red
- Temperament: intelligent, friendly
- Life expectancy: 15 – 18 years
Miniature Poodle Origin and Breed History
The miniature poodle is one of the oldest dog breeds. Albrecht Dürer depicted him as early as 1500. Originally used for water hunting, the small dog turned into a companion dog at the aristocratic courts of France in the 19th century. Developed for hunting, lion clipping (the hair on the back of the body was trimmed to facilitate locomotion in water) was refined by Marie Antoinette. At the end of the 19th century, poodles were systematically bred in townhouses.
Germany was long considered the country of origin of the dog breed. The first poodle club existed in Munich from 1896. In 1945, the FCI decided to recognize France as the country of origin and to commission the development of further breed standards. In 1930 the Miniature Poodle was recognized as its own breed standard.
Miniature Poodle Character and temperament
As a small dog, the Miniature Poodle is often underestimated. The intelligent dog is a sporty athlete. Because of his ability to learn and his love of performing tricks, he performed in circuses. With its sensitivity and high social skills, the small poodle is ideal for keeping in families with children. The friendly dog bonds closely with his family and makes fun of them for a good mood. The little poodle gets along very well with other animals. If he is kept individually, he demands family connection and attention.
Worth knowing about the toy poodle attitude
The hunting instinct is gone. Only the fun of water and retrieval exercises remain from the earlier use. As an athlete, endurance sports or fly-ball are no problem. Even if the little dog looks like a doll, he is an excellent runner. He enjoys going on long hikes with his family.
But the mental abilities must also be encouraged so that he is not underutilized. He enjoys doing tricks with clicker training or solving problems with intelligence toys. Because of its intelligence, the poodle is easy to train. He needs consistent training.
Miniature poodles do not shed. The loose hair gets caught in the undercoat. The fur needs to be brushed and combed daily. The ever-growing hair should be trimmed regularly in a pet grooming salon. Since there is no change of coat, the dog is suitable for allergy sufferers.
The muscular dog needs a high proportion of protein (at least 50%) in its diet. 15 grams of meat / kg body weight should be fed per day. Vegetables, fruit and grain complement the feed portion. The closely standing teeth are cleaned with chews.
Diseases typical of the breed
The Miniature Poodle dog breed is not prone to disease. Hereditary diseases that occur are minimized through selection.
- As a small breed of dog, the miniature poodle is prone to patellar luxation. The kneecap shifts and the gait becomes hopping.
- In Legg-Calve-Perthes syndrome, the cartilage of the head of the thigh is not supplied with enough blood and dies. Painful lameness occurs.
- In degenerative myelopathy, parts of the spinal cord are destroyed. Lameness is especially visible in the area of the hind legs.
- In hypotrichosis, hair falls out for an unknown cause. Another cause of hair loss is sebadenitis. The immune system destroys the sebum glands in the skin and the hair roots are damaged.
- With corneal dystrophy, inflammation of the eyes occurs again and again, which is limited to the cornea. Cloudiness and loss of vision are the result.
- Too few red blood cells are formed due to a lack of pyruvate kinase, anemia is the result.
- The dogs tire quickly and are not productive.
The miniature poodle is a popular pedigree dog that wins hearts with its elegant appearance.
Small Poodle Dog Breed
- Breed: poodle
- Country of origin: France
- FCI: Group 9, companion and companion dogs
- Size: 35 – 45 cm
- Weight: bitches: up to 9 kg, males up to 12 kg
- Physique: athletic, slim
- Head: narrow snout, slightly slanted eyes, lop ears
- Fur: woolly, finely ruffled
- Coat colors: black, white, brown, gray, apricot, harlequin, black and tan
- Temperament: intelligent, friendly
- Life expectancy: 15-18 years
Small poodle origin and breed history
Mentioned for the first time as “Beautiful Poodle” in 1555, the dog breed was used for waterfowl hunting because of its fondness for retrieving. The hair on the back of the body was shortened so that the fur did not make it difficult to move in the water. The hair is retained in the front area of the body, on the paws and tail to protect the dog from the cold.
The change from working dog to society dog took place in the 19th century. The standard poodle and miniature poodle were bred from the small poodle for the French aristocratic houses. Towards the end of the 19th century, middle-class families continued to develop breeding. To refine the coat, spaniels were crossed several times.
For a long time, Germany was considered the country of origin. The first poodle club was founded in Munich in 1896. In the middle of the 20th century, the FCI recognized France as the country of origin of the dog breed.
Small poodle temperament and essence
The small poodle has a high IQ and makes decisions independently. He enjoys learning tricks. The good-humored dog loves walks in the great outdoors. The fondness for retrieving has remained. He is close to his family, strangers are indifferent to him. He gets along very well with other dogs. In the pack he does not behave dominantly, but reacts in a balanced way. Small poodles do not feel lonely even when they are kept alone, provided they have a family connection.
Interesting facts about keeping small poodles
The hunting instinct is not pronounced in the small poodle. Since the joy of fetching is still there, the dog loves ball games. Dog sports such as fly-ball or endurance sports are no problem. In addition, he must be mentally busy. Clicker training or intelligence toys are just the thing.
Consistent upbringing gives the little dog security. Playful training units can already be started with puppies.
Because the loose hairs get caught in the fur, the poodle does not shed. It is also suitable for allergy sufferers. In addition to the basic equipment with comb, brush and hair dryer, a dog salon should be visited regularly. Freshly washed and coiffed, the little fellow feels really good.
The pedigree dogs are muscular and athletic. Your feed should consist of 50% protein. As a guideline: 15 grams of meat / kg body weight per day provide the small dog with sufficient protein. Natural chews support oral hygiene and ensure healthy teeth.
Diseases typical of the breed
Small poodles are also very healthy dogs when hereditary diseases occur.
- Like many other small dog breeds, the small poodle is prone to patellar luxations. The kneecap is not properly fixed and slips out of its correct position. A hopping gait emerges.
- If the eyeballs are too small (microphthalmia), vision is restricted. Older dogs often have a cloudy lens (cataract). The eye appears opaque, white.
- Like all poodles, the small poodle is also prone to idiopathic epilepsy. In milder cases, the dog appears disoriented. In severe cases, seizures occur.
- The ceruminal glands in the external auditory canal produce a lot of wax and clog the external auditory canal with fine hairs. Bacteria and fungi cause ear infections.
- In sebadenitis, the immune system destroys the skin’s sebum glands. The hair falls out.
Small poodles are prone to diabetes mellitus. Therefore, attention should be paid to species-appropriate, balanced feed from birth.
The charming, curly-haired heads enjoy learning and doing things with their family. As funny companions, they enrich life and spread a good mood.