The Poodle: An Overview
The poodle is one of the best-known dog breeds in the world, renowned for its elegance, intelligence, and balanced character. According to the International Cynological Federation (FCI), poodles are classified into four varieties based on their size: toy, miniature, medium (or standard), and giant. However, other cynological associations, like the American Kennel Club (AKC), recognize only three varieties: standard, miniature, and toy.
The poodle is one of the many French dog breeds, although its origin is uncertain and controversial. It is believed that the ancestor that most influenced the modern poodle was the barbet, a spaniel that was widespread in Europe, especially in Germany.
Before the 16th century, the poodle and its ancestor were used as spaniels to hunt and recover killed prey. It was in the 16th century that poodles began to gain popularity as companion dogs, becoming frequent in European courts, especially in France. Their great intelligence and elegance made poodles one of the most popular breeds in history.
Today, poodles make excellent pets, regardless of their variety, and are also highly appreciated in dog shows.
Poodles have a proportionate body that is slightly longer than it is tall. They are usually lighter than other breeds of similar sizes. According to the official FCI standard, the heights for the different varieties are as follows:
- Large Poodle: 17.5 to 23.5 inches at the withers
- Medium Poodle: 13.5 to 17.5 inches at the withers
- Miniature Poodle: 11 to 13.5 inches at the withers
- Toy Poodle: 9.5 to 11 inches at the withers
The poodle's coat is abundant, fine-textured, and wooly. It can be curly or in tufts and is always one color. One of the great advantages of these dogs is that they hardly shed, making them excellent for people with allergies. Their lifespan ranges from 10 to 15 years.
Temperament and Behavior
Generally, Poodles are highly intelligent, loyal, happy, and playful dogs. They are considered one of the ten most intelligent dogs in the world. They learn very easily and love to run, swim, and retrieve items. The two larger varieties are usually a bit quieter than the two smaller varieties.
Poodles are easy to train but need a lot of company; otherwise, they can suffer from separation anxiety. Without proper physical and mental stimulation, these dogs can become bored and may bark excessively or become destructive.
Although Poodles tend to be healthy dogs in general, there are some diseases common in this breed. These include sebaceous adenitis, gastric torsion, and Addison's disease. Less frequently, they may suffer from cataracts, hip dysplasia, and epilepsy.
For more information, talk to one of our Pet Experts and get customized advice by submitting a request in our Mavyn app or Mavyn Pet page.