|Sensitivity to strangers|
|Affection for family|
|Suitable for first-time owners|
|Ease of grooming|
This is one of the world’s most popular breeds: Poodles are life-long friends!
It is impossible not to mention the Poodle when it comes to dog breeds. After all, is it not one of the most widespread dog breeds? A perfectly neat, proud and self-confident, even arrogant, image comes to mind.
But the Poodle is not only a dog worth-contemplating, it loves company. It is an excellent life companion; it is athletic, obedient, eager to please and overall a happy pup. It provides infinite joy and love to its family, who are really lucky to share a life together with this dog. Let’s get to know the Poodle a little better.
This breed is believed to have originated in either Germany (where it is called Pudel) or France (Caniche). Originally, the Poodle was developed for hunting waterfold. It descends from the Barbet, from whom it inherited many traits.
Specimens appear in Middle Age paintings. The Poodle was portrayed as a working dog in the 17th century by many artists. The Poodle was an excellent gundog, constantly swimming in the water to catch ducks killed by hunters.
The present Poodle’s aesthetic style may seem extravagant or senseless but it is related to its gundog purpose.
The fur in the back legs is shorter to make the movement in the water easier; the clip was left long to allow the hunter to follow the dog, without losing sight of it. The long fur in the chest covers its lungs and heart to protect it from bushes.
In the late 18th century in Europe, they were used as company dogs by the nobility. At the beginning of the 19th century, many Poodles, thanks to their intelligence and learning abilities, were used in French circuses. At the same time the first brown and grey Poodle institutions were born.
Standard Poodles was also used as a war dog, taking advantage of its ability to learn commands, liveliness, endurance and intelligence. The Poodle was officially recognized by the FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale) in 1955, and by the AKC (American Kennel Club) in 1987.
Poodle: Characteristics and Appearance
The head must be defined, without it being sturdy or too delicate. They are elegant but their stand is not too snobbish. The Poodle’s eyes are either black or dark brown; brown Poodles may be dark amber. The ears are pretty long, straight and round on the edges.
The Poodle is a medium-sized dog, with a corded and curly coat. It has an intelligent look, constantly attentive.
Poodle: Size Varieties
These varieties may be:
The tawny color can range from pale tawny to a reddish or apricot tawny. The Poodle’s fur may be curly (abundant, fine-textured, dense, elastic, resistant to hand pressure, with the same length and curl type); or corded (laden with thick, finely and densely-textured, rope-like dreadlocks, not longer than 8 inches or 20 cm).
The Poodle’s skin may be black, brown, grey or tawny, its pigmentation perfectly matches the coat’s color. White Poodles’ skin is expected to be silvery. No matter its color, the nose, mouth, gums, eyelids, palate, orifices, scrotum and footpads have to be well-pigmented.
Admitted styles in exhibitions are: Continental Clip, Modern Cut and English Saddle Cut. Poodle traits do not vary according to their size (Toy, Miniature or Standard). The only difference is, in fact, size and weight.
Poodles are famous for one of the most intelligent dog breeds. It is a fast-learner, and a lively and playful, attentive and energized dog; it is also people-oriented, affectionate and docile. It is extremely loyal and warm, always willing to please its owner, a helpful trait when it comes to training.
Miniature Poodles tend to be more prudent than their “cousins”, Toy Poodles. The Standard Poodle is a brilliant and joyful breed, well suited for any family. This dog knows how to win over children and seniors with its adorable personality.
It loves the comfort of a couch (it would be hard to imagine a Poodle forced to live in the backyard, day and night) but also loves to work out. It enjoys walking, running, and swimming, or, in other words, outdoor activities.
Generally, Poodles are adopted so they become members of the family. But, given their high intelligence, they can also be fitness partners, or practise agility, obedience, etc.
Poodle: Health and Diseases
The Standard Poodle tends to be a sturdy and healthy breed. However, you should still make sure your puppy’s parents are not carriers of any genetic diseases affecting its breed.
There are canine organizations in different countries whose selective breeding programs require the stud and the female dog to have the necessary tests showing clearance from the following diseases: hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), patellar dislocation, and avascular necrosis of the femoral head (also known as Legg-Calve-Perthes or Perthes Disease).
Some Standard Poodles might suffer from epilepsy, gastric torsion, also known as gastric dilation volvulus (GDV), or from sebaceous adenitis (SA). There are other rarely-occurring diseases, such as Von Willebrand’s disease, or Addison’s disease.
How Long Does a Poodle Live?
Its life expectancy is around 12 years. Poodles are long-lived dogs, but we should take size into account: big dog breeds tend to live less than the small ones.
Poodle: Relationship with its Owner
There is no flip side to having a Poodle. It is perfect for families, it can adapt to many surroundings, as long as it is not left alone. In fact, this dog seriously needs life at home.
Poodles have no underlying fur. For this reason, shedding is not a problem. Furthermore, it is hypoallergenic, so it is perfect for people with allergies.
Obviously, Poodle owners have to meet their dogs’ needs, so it is recommended that you have time and patience to care properly for your pup. As regards its coat’s upkeep, a daily brushing is enough, but grooming costs may increase if you want to enter your Poodle in competitions.
Poodle: Relationship with Kids
Poodles are playful and lively, and, at the same time, never aggressive. It is a perfect partner for children, provided they are taught how to approach and interact with other dogs.
Poodle: Relationship with Other Dogs
It is an extremely friendly dog, it rarely gets into any fights with other dogs. However, early socialization is advised in Poodle puppies.
Poodle: Price, Puppies For Sale, and Breeders
Try to avoid unreliable sellers, so we recommend that you go to a renowned and certified breeding institution.
It is essential to make sure the stud and female dog are tested so they do not pass on any genetic disease, like the ones we mentioned previously, to their pups.
As this is a highly-demanded breed, the cost of a puppy with pedigree papers and a parent health test may range between 800 and 1500 dollars, or 700 and 1400 English pounds.
Now that we have described all major points, you can go and look for your new 4-legged friend who is surely waiting for you.
Poodle: Interesting Facts
The most famous war dog that belonged to the Poodle breed was Moustache, that served in the French 40th Regiment of Infantry (40ème Régiment d’Infanterie de Ligne). Moustache had a major role during the Austrian Campaign. It lived in Marengo. Moustache is said to have discovered an Austrian spy, saving its detachment from a surprise attack.
In Austerlitz, he also played an integral role. A soldier (standard bearer) carrying the French flag was wounded and killed by enemies, who had began to surround him. With his last breath, this soldier tried to protect the Napoleonic flag by wrapping it around his own body. Moustache, the Poodle, could not do anything for the soldier, but he managed to save the cause for which the soldier gave his life: he crossed enemy lines, and gave back the flag.
This brave Poodle was awarded with a medal for his merit; he was also registered in the regiment book as a soldier in all aspects, with rights to food rations and a salary. He met his end when he fell to a Spanish cannonball in the Battle of Badajoz, on March 11th, 1812, when he was 12 years old.
The Poodle belongs to the group of companion dogs, so you also may be interested in:
- French Bulldog
- Jack Russell Terrier
- Australian Cattle Dog
- Boston Terrier
- English Bulldog