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Poodle Breed Information

Brown Mini Poodle sitting on the lawn

Elegant and fancy, highly trainable, playful, exceedingly clever, loyal, and affectionate beyond measure, the Mini /Toy Poodle is among the top 5 most popular breeds in the world and it’s easy to understand why. These pooches are joyful, lively, eager to please dogs. They are adventurous, kind, family-oriented pups who love hiking, swimming, canine games, sports and any, and all, family activities.

These puppies are merry and bouncy little marshmallows. They are cuddly and sweet pups who love running around, playing, making friends and are very enthusiastic learners. The breed is divided into 3 recognized categories: Toy Poodle; Mini; Standard. Although they differ in size, one thing is for sure: they are glamorous companion pets. 

For more insights on the unique characteristics and history of Poodles, check out our article: 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Poodles

BREED TYPE / MIX Purebred ENERGY Moderate/High SHEDDING Minimum TRAINING Accomodating TEMPERAMENT Cheerful, Intelligent, Lively, Loyal, Playful ADULT WEIGHT Toy 4-6 lbs, Mini 10-12 lbs ADULT HEIGHT Toy 6-8 in, Mini 12-14 in LIFE SPAN 12-15 yrs


  • Poodles don’t shed and are considered hypoallergenic dogs
  • The Poodle is classified as the second most intelligent dog breed  
  • With an agile mindset and an athletic body, this dog excels at canine sports
  • Poodle dogs are comfortable in both hot and cold climates
  • These puppies are among the most trainable pups in the world - they love challenges and are easy to train and housebreak
  • Highly adaptable – Mini and Toy Poodles are known to quickly adapt in small apartments as well as big homes
  • The Poodle has a long lifespan of 10 to 18 years
  • Kind, gentle, friendly, and non-aggressive, this curly beauty is best suited for families with or without children, singles, and seniors
  • They make excellent watchdogs, although they are not overly vocal, they will announce when a visitor is approaching
  • Eager to please, affectionate, and receptive, this dog is a great companion for first time pet owners
  • Mini Poodles are famous for retaining their forever-young looks and playful personalities well into their teen years
  • Receptive to human emotions, with a positive energy, and a loving devoted nature, this breed makes a wonderful therapy pet

Considering their high trainability and adaptability, Poodles are often listed among the easiest dogs to take care of. Learn more about other breeds that are easy to care for

Brown Merle Poodle wearing a scarf


With their heads held high, graceful posture, and elegant demeanor, the Miniature Poodles are truly glamorous in appearance. The Poodle is small in stature with an average weight between 10 and 12 pounds and an average height between 12 to 14 inches. They have a well-proportioned square-built muscular body, a long straight muzzle, dark oval-shaped eyes, feathered floppy ears, and a straight tail carried up. Their eyes and nose color may vary based on coat color.

The hypoallergenic non-shedding coat is soft, curly, and luxurious and can come in a variety of colors such as white, black, gray, beige, cream, brown, apricot, red, blue, silver, silver beige, or various shades of the same colors. Black, brown, and apricot puppies are among the most popular.  

Strong and agile with an elegant and graceful posture, the Mini Poodle dog has an impressive reputation in both the canine sports field and the canine show ring.  

The breed has three recognized sizes in the United States and four in European countries. The breed standard sizes that are recognized are Standard Poodle – which is the largest, Miniature or medium, and Toy Poodle. Europe also recognizes Moyen which is a smaller-sized standard. Teacup dogs are most often very small Toy Poodles. These small dogs don't usually exceed 10 pounds. Toy Poodle puppies can weigh as little as 3 pounds.


Mini and Toy Poodles are friendly, easy-going, playful dogs. They are known to be gentle around children of all ages, accepting of cats, dogs, and other household pets and friendly towards strangers.  

They are considered to be highly intelligent, receptive, and attentive since early puppyhood. Combining their sharp minds with their eagerness to learn and please, these puppies are amongst the most trainable in the world.  

Mini and Toy Poodle dogs have an adventurous, lively spirit. They love the outdoors where they can go on long strolls with their human family, run, swim, hike, play, and socialize. This dog is without a doubt a most wonderful adventure companion. Playful and eager to have fun, the Poodle greatly enjoys playtime with kids and teens as well as with adults whether it’s with a game of fetch, chase, Frisbee, hide’n’seek or a mentally stimulating canine puzzle game. When playtime is over, their peaceful and affectionate nature kicks in and they are more than happy to partake in a relaxing cuddle session on the couch with their human family.  

Although they check all the boxes with their sharp intelligence, fun loving personality and friendly nature, they have one more skill and strength to impress with: they excel at canine sports such as rally, tracking, obedience, flyball, and agility. Truly fabulous in body, mind and spirit, the Mini and Toy Poodles make remarkable companion pets. 

RELATED: 7 Things You Didn’t Know About Poodles 


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Poodles are not high maintenance dogs despite their reputation. Their grooming requirements depend on the length of their coats. Mini and Toy Poodles with long curly coats require brushing and combing 2 to 3 times a week, whereas those with short curly coats require brushing and combing only once a week. It is recommended to trim and clean the hair around their eyes regularly to avoid tear stains.

To keep their coats clean, shiny, and glamorous, they should be bathed monthly. Their nails should be clipped every few weeks as they tend to overgrow, and their ears should be checked and cleaned regularly, preferably bi daily. Poodles, like all dogs, can suffer from dental issues if their teeth aren't brushed regularly. It is highly recommended to brush their teeth every few days and daily when possible. When grooming a Poodle, make sure to only use vet-approved products specifically designed for dogs.  

For guidance on how often and the best methods to bathe your Poodle, check out our guide on how often you should bathe your dog

Exercise Needs

Poodles are generally active dogs. They love to run around, play games, participate in canine sporting competitions, and be involved in fun family activities. An hour of daily exercise coupled with some active playtime indoors will be enough to keep the dog healthy, fit, and happy. Mini and Toy Poodles can go with 30 minutes of daily walks and exercise. Standard dogs need up to an hour or more of exercise. Because they are an exceedingly bright dog breed, they also need plenty of mental stimulation during the day to keep from getting bored. Puzzle games and training activities are a great way to keep them mentally engaged.  


Poodles are a very resilient and healthy dog breed, especially smaller-sized varieties like the Mini and Toy Poodle. These dogs have very few health issues with most being minor and mainly due to old age. Some of the health problems they might suffer from include allergies, hip and elbow dysplasia, patellar luxation, cataracts, dental issues, ear infections, and skin problems. Larger varieties may suffer from Addison’s, epilepsy, and bloat.  


Poodles are a long-lived breed of dog that can reach as much as 21 years. Mini and Toy Poodle dogs especially have a long lifespan of 12 to 18 years. Standards have a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years. They have been known to live well past their senior years, with several individuals living 21+ years. The oldest Poodle to have lived was Lady, who was born in 1908 and lived until 1937. She reached 28 years of age. 


Poodles are exceptionally smart dogs. They hold second place as the most intelligent dog breed and are considered to be Einstein dogs. Training them is easy as they are eager to learn and can be taught any trick or command. As above average in intelligence, these puppies can learn most of their basic commands in the first few weeks of training. They are people pleasers, and they love a good challenge, but they can also become stubborn if their needs aren’t met during the training process.

It is recommended to provide plenty of stimulation during training and always have treats by to offer them as rewards for good behavior. Poodle puppies are also easy to housebreak, leash train, and socialize as they are easy going and friendly.  

Although they are a very friendly breed, socialization training is a must when they are in their puppy stage. It is recommended to first introduce friends and family members while indoors in a low-distraction area. After your puppy becomes comfortable with meeting new people, you can move on to outdoor socialization where there are more distractions. 

Poodles are generally independent dogs. They are known to do well when left alone for long periods of time and are not generally prone to separation anxiety. Overly spoiling them can lead to over-attachment and should be avoided.

Training a Poodle can be a delightful experience given their intelligence. For more insights on training dogs effectively, check out our blog Easiest Dogs to Train - Top 5 Pups for Effortless Training 

RELATED: New Puppy Owner Guide 


The National dog of France, and a member of the canine world aristocracy, the Poodle is an old and versatile dog breed with a history full of achievements. These elegant dogs have been depicted in paintings and literature around the world, in ancient Egyptian carvings (dating as far back as the first centuries B.C), in French poetry, and on ancient Greek coins and artifacts from the Roman Empire.  

These dogs are said to have originated in Germany centuries ago where they were used as water retrievers and duck hunters. They were given the German name “Pudelin” which means splash in the water. The signature look (that is now displayed in the show ring) – trimmed with pom poms – had an important role in the duck hunting days of the dog. The trim was meant to aid in speed and the pom poms to protect from injury and keep warm. 

During wartime, used to the sound of gunfire from their duck hunting days, the Pudelins were enlisted in the German military as working dogs and soon traveled to France alongside German soldiers. Once the war was over, having proven to be excellent military dogs, the dogs moved on to building up their reputation as hunters, retrievers, herders, and show dogs. The French Circus became so fascinated with the agile and highly trainable dogs that they began breeding them down in size to make it easier to handle and transport them when traveling with the circus.

The Miniature and Toy Poodle versions, who quickly rose to fame as cinematic stars, truffle hunters, and show dogs, became highly popular wherever they went, and soon found favor among the nobles and aristocrats across the United States and Europe (Winston Churchill had two Mini Poodles). The French elite further bred the breed down in size to a smaller Toy Poodle variety who would know instant fame as an adorable tiny lapdog. 

The Poodle is now divided into three categories: the Toy, the Miniature, and the Standard. 

  • The Toy Poodle has an average height between 8 to 10 inches and an average weight between 6 and 9 pounds. The Toy is famous for being a cuddly and affectionate lap dog raised in the lap of luxury.  
  • The Miniature has an average height between 12 to 14 inches and an average weight between 10 and 12 pounds. Minis are famous for being excellent truffle hunters and sweet companion pets.  
  • The Standard has an average height between 15 to 20+ inches and an average weight between 30 and 70 pounds. The Standard is famous for being a duck hunter, a circus performer and a show dog.  

The Poodle has been classified as most popular dog breed in the United States for 20 consecutive years and is now one of the most popular smaller dogs in the world. It is also the parent breed to several other breeds/poodle mixes. Thanks to its hypoallergenic coat qualities and supreme intelligence, the Standard, Mini and Toy Poodles have been selected over the course of a few decades for the creation of amazing doodle breeds. Among the most popular Poodle mixes are: 

Poodles have been crossbred with various other breeds to produce some of the most popular doodle breeds. Learn more about the early training and key behaviors of Cavapoo puppies, one of the popular Poodle mixes