Poodle (Miniature)

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Is the Poodle (Miniature) right for you?

Species group:

The basics:
One of the world's most popular dogs, the Poodle is also widely regarded as one of the most intelligent, perhaps only exceeded in sheer brainpower by the Border Collie itself. While the breed has existed as a pet since at least the fifteenth century, it took the United States by storm in 1935, when a white Standard Poodle won Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club show in New York. For around the next 20 years, it was the number one breed registered by the AKC. Even today, they remain one of the top ten most popular pure breeds in America.

Note: The Poodle comes in three recognized size varieties-- the Standard, the Miniature, and the Toy. They are not separate breeds, and any of the three can make a fine family pet. Certainly, the Miniature Poodle is one of the most highly-regarded pets out there-- an energetic and intelligent dog in a convenient size that clearly enjoys human companionship.

Poodles may look high-maintenance, and they certain require good grooming, but they can be active dogs who love swimming, running, or playing games with their owners. They're social, so don't expect to be able to dump them in a backyard alone all day. They can also be very sensitive animals that pick up on tension in the home.

Appearance / health:
Poodles are elegant dogs with a square build with proportionally long legs and a notable springy gait. The oval eyes are very dark, and set far enough apart with an alert intelligent expression. Ears are long, wide, thickly feathered and hang close to the head. The head is long with alert, dark-colored, almond-shaped eyes. The skull is a bit rounded, and the teeth should have a scissors bite.The chest is deep, moderately wide with well-sprung ribs. The feet are small, oval and webbed, with arched toes. Show dogs usually have the dewclaws removed, and the tail docked to produce a "balanced dog."

Poodles do not appear to shed as dead hair is caught between the outer curly hairs. If the dog is not regularly groomed, the coat can become a tangled mess. Brushing the coat with a hard-bristled brush three or four times a week is necessary to prevent tangles and matting.

The coat needs extra attention between the age of 9 to 16 months as it becomes curlier and coarser. Trimming the coat is necessary. The coat is very versatile and can be shaped into a variety of clip styles.

The ears should be checked regularly for mites and the ear hair should be pulled out if necessary. The teeth also need regular scaling (cleaning).

Poodles do not require as much exercise as do the hunting or working breeds, but being agile and athletic, they enjoy walks, play sessions, and outdoor trips.

Although a long-lived breed, Poodles are, nevertheless, subject to many genetic diseases. Cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy may cause blindness. They are also prone to Legg-Calve’-Perthes disease, patellar dislocation, diabetes, epilepsy, hypothyroidism, undescended testicle(s), and some cancers. Allergies and skin conditions are common - possibly due to unskilled use of clippers or allergies to shampoo and/or color enhancers. Runny eyes and ear infections are also common.

Behavior / temperament:
Poodles thrive in human company and do not like to be left alone for long durations. They also make good watchdogs, but unlike some working breeds, they do not usually become one-person dogs when they are part of a family. Their high intelligence has made them popular as performers in circuses across the globe for centuries. They can become bored easily, and can get quite creative about finding mischief. They enjoy car rides and do not get car-sick.

The Miniature Poodle is a cheerful, amusing, clever, highly intelligent, sensitive and easily-trainable companion dog. The breed is great at learning tricks, which has made it a favorite in the circus ring. The Poodle will feel slighted if it is left out of family activities and will noticeably pout. Many owners feel this dog understands speech in an uncanny way.

Poodles are believed to be one of the most intelligent breeds, and can be easily trained. Basic obedience training is necessary to make them behave properly both at home and in public. Firm and consistent training with positive reinforcement yields best results. When training this breed, harsh disciplinary measures may lead to negative behavioral changes and should be avoided. It must be mentioned that poodles are one of the easiest breeds to potty-train and learn more quickly than most dogs.

They are good watchdogs given their small size, as they tend to bark a lot.


energetic clowns, warm personality, older people, trainable dogs, good watch dog, affectionate dog


dental disease, ear infections, regular grooming, nervous breed, barking, tear stains


wirycurly short coat, excellent therapy dogs, long life span, tiny feet, decent swimmer

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