Breed Type: Toy/Companion
Country of Origin: Germany orFrance
Popular Names: Caniche, Barbone, and Pudle
Height: (At the withers) Males under 28
Weight: 2.7 – 4 kg
Best suited as: Pet or show dog with an active owner or family.
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Popularity: On the Top 10 list of most popular dogs
One of three sizes of Poodle, the Toy Poodle is a wonderful companion dog.
The Toy Poodle is a small, squarely-built dog with a single coat that is considered to be “hypo-allergenic” in that it does not shed onto the floor or into the air. The fur is more like hair, water-resistant, and comes in solid grey, blue, cream, black, white, silver beige, silver, red, sable, brindle, apricot, café au lait, and brown. In some coats, particularly the apricots, creams, café au laits, blues, browns, silvers, and greys, there may be varying shades of the same colour. They also come in tuxedo, mismark, and parti. Tuxedo describes a dog with 40 percent or more of the coat being white; mismark has a bit less white than the tuxedo, and parti has coloured spots distributed over a white coat.
They are athletic and sturdy with wide-set ears and a scissors bite.
Their hair is very dense and wiry and may be cut in a variety of different clips. They have long muzzles and oval-shaped eyes. All except some apricot, brown, and café au lait dogs have black eyes – the exceptions have dark amber eyes.
The original Poodle, now known as the Standard Poodle, supposedly originated in Germany over 400 years ago but was soon adopted and standardized by the French as their national dog and for use as a water dog. Besides companion dogs, they were used to retrieve for hunters and to perform tricks as circus dogs.
The full-sized “Pudel” was bred down into a Miniature and then a Toy version. There is some discrepancy about when this occurred – different sources say the 1400s, while some say the 1700s.
It is said that the nobility used to carry these small dogs around in their sleeves for warmth and called them “sleeve dogs.”
They travelled to North America and other parts of the world in the late 1800s and are now one of the most popular breeds in the world. They are still used as retrievers by many hunters today.
Famous circus dog “Twinkle” performed with British clowns Audrey and Kenneth Austin for years.
The Toy Poodle, like the other sizes, is friendly, affectionate, playful, and highly intelligent. They train easily and love to be the centre of attention. They do need consistent rules so that they do not become spoiled little tyrants who rule the household.
These little dogs always look alert. They have been accused of being “hoity toity” or “fragile” because of their reputation in the media, but they are anything but. They are extremely energetic and all have instinctive hunting and marking drives. Their constantly alert state makes them good barking watch dogs but they can very easily get out of hand with barking behaviours. Firm and consistent “no-barking” or “quiet” rules will suit these dogs, particularly those ones that live in apartments or other close quarters.
Poodles of all sizes bond with all the members of a family, not just one. They get along fine with older children but may snap if instigated so toddlers should be taught to respect these dogs. They get along well with other pets in the house and are extremely social. They prefer not to be left alone for extended periods. Like many other breeds, they need to be mentally stimulated and physically exercised to avoid boredom. They love to learn new tricks to show off to family and friends and also enjoy competitions. Training should always be based on positive reinforcement and never harsh.
Care and Grooming
Poodles need to be brushed daily to keep their coat tangle-free. They are called “hypo-allergenic” since their single coat only lightly sheds – and when the hair does come out, it becomes tangled in the other hair. This is why daily brushing is so important. Their tightly curled hair limits the amount of dander they release to the surrounding area. Frequent bathing also removes saliva from their coats, which can be another trigger for allergy sufferers.
Those dogs not in show need to be groomed every six to eight weeks.
There are many different kinds of show clips: continental, English saddle, puppy clip, and sporting clip. Pet clips may be longer or shorter depending on owner preference and weather. Some dogs are done in a corded coat that looks like dreadlocks.
They enjoy off-leash dog parks for some social and active time with other dogs. Otherwise, daily exercise consisting of a few walks is sufficient as long as they have toys and other activities with which to play when indoors. Like the other sizes, they do well in tracking, retrieving, herding, obedience, and agility competitions.
Toy Poodles are susceptible to the same health problems as the miniature and toy versions. The most common are Addison’s disease, gastric dilation volvulus (bloat), tracheal collapse, thyroid disorders, sebaceous adenitis, epilepsy, hip dysplasia, juvenile renal disease, ear infections, and cancer. Of all of these, ear infections are easily preventable with regular ear care to remove dirt, debris, stray hairs, and wax from the canal.
Some toys live up to 20 years but the average life expectancy is 12 to 15 years.
Suitability As A Pet
They make great therapy dogs, and seem to get along really well with the elderly. This makes them the perfect companions for retired people. At the other end of the spectrum, they get along well with respectful children, so this makes them a dog suitable for all types of families. Their ease of training makes them a great dog for a novice dog owner.
Their “hypoallergenic” rating makes a Toy Poodle a good choice for people with allergies. Individuals should spend some time with one to ensure it is, indeed, hypoallergenic. All dogs affect people differently.
Toy Poodle Organisations in Australia
No club information listed
Toy Poodle Organisations in the UK
Poodle (Toy) Dog Clubs
Did we miss your organisation? Let us know. Contact Us