QUESTIONS REGARDING POODLE SIZES OR VARIETY
Q: I recently purchased a poodle. The breeder told me it was a teacup but I was told there
is no such thing as a teacup poodle. Is this true?
A: Yes. There are only 3 recognized sizes here in the US. The Toy poodle which is 10
inches and under at the withers. The Miniature poodle which is over 10 inches to 15 inches at the withers. The
Standard poodle which is over 15 inches at the withers.
A Teacup is merely a name used by unscrupulous breederss to demand an obscene price for a small
toy poodle but its still a toy poodle no matter what. Often times these tiny poodles are poorly bred and have a whole
list of health issues. A breeder that uses the word teacup is a breeder I would stay far away from.
Q: My breeder told me that my standard poodle was a royal standard.
What does this mean?
A: As you can see in the question above there really is no such thing as a royal
standard. This is yet again a term used to get buyers to pay more money for what the breeder considers to be a
huge poodle. Often these poodles are over 30 inches at the withers. This is again a breeder to stay away from.
There is no height limit on AKC or UKC standards for the poodle, However, that being said these ultra large poodles often
have hip dysplasia problems and other orthopedic issues.
Q: The other day while shopping around I found ads mentioning "moyen" and "klein" sized
poodles. What does this mean?
A: Again as stated in the above questions you can see the US has no klein or moyen sized poodles
in their breed standards. These are terms from other countries to define another size of poodle. Many of
the European countries have 4 size varities of poodles instead of our 3. These terms are used by some breeders
here in the US to define another size between the Miniature variety and the Standard variety. In other words,
these are just small standard poodles. These are not recognized sizes in the US.
Q. That can't possibly be a purebred poodle can it because its so large?
A. Poodles come in three varities. The Toy Poodle (which people seem to be most familiar with),
The Miniature Poodle, and the Standard Poodle. As per the AKC the Toy Poodle is 10 inches in height at the withers (shoulders)
and under. The Miniature Poodle is over 10 inches at the withers to 15 inches. The Standard Poodle is over 15 inches at the
withers. This is the largest variety of the poodle. It was also the first variety of the poodle. Everything else was bred
down from the standard. This also explains why you can have such a variety of size in puppies in one litter. I personally
have had Standard poodles that have ranged in size from 21 inches up to 30 inches at the withers. So the Standard variety
can be quite large.
QUESTIONS REGARDING POODLE COLORS
Q. Does the color of my poodle have anything to do with the temperment of my poodle?
A. In short no. Temperment has more to do with the temperment of the parents of your puppy
as well as the way your puppy was socialized and desensitized in its early weeks. Good breeders do all they can to ensure
that their breeding stock is of the best temperment for the breed and that their puppies have been properly handled from birth
until they go to their new home with you. There are some people that follow the school of thought that poodles
of same colors have the same temperment traits. However, after having multiple poodles of my own as well as
producing puppies of every color I find this school of thought to be wrong. Each puppy is an individual and all
have different personalities.
Q. My poodle is of a "unique" color that I have never seen before. Does this mean that
I am getting a mixed breed puppy?
A. Not in most cases. Where as I am not the breeder of these puppies and can not say for sure
the parentage, I CAN tell you that there are many different poodle colors out there including the multicolored poodles.
These include; Brindles, Sables, Phantoms, Tuxedos, Piebalds, and combinations of these patterns. These multicolored
poodles are just as purebred as the solid color and many of these multi colors have been around since the inception of the
poodle. There is one noteable exception I would like to mention and that is the Merle poodle. Quite a few years
ago these poodles were all the rage. There was a certain breeder that was producing this color pattern consistantly.
After investigations done by AKC it was found that these "Merle" poodles were produced by mixing breeds and that the merle
gene does NOT exist in poodles today.
Q. Because my poodle is a "unique" color I was told that my poodles health would be poor.
Is this true?
A. Absolutely not. The color of you poodle will have no baring on the health of your
poodle. What DOES have baring on the health of your poodle is the health and genes of the parents. If the parents
carry genes for inherited genetic diseases and or defects then you run the risk of having a genetic problems in
your poodle. These genetic diseases and or defects include; Eye problems, Heart defects, bleeding disorders, malformation
of bones and joints, liver disorders, skin issues, thyroid issues and the list goes on. This is why genetic
testing of potential breeding stock is so vitally important in breeding programs. I highly recommend only buying from
breeders that genetically test their breeding stock.
Q. The breeder I am looking at purchasing from has given me a choice of two puppies from the same
litter. One is a solid color and one is a multicolor. Does this mean that the multicolor puppy has inferior lines to that
of the solid colored puppy.
A. (Yes I was actually asked this question). Absolutely not. If they are siblings that means they
come from the same parents sharing the same genes and the same lines regardless of their color.
Q. My poodles color has faded, does this mean that my poodles breeding is inferior?
A. No. The fact is that most poodle colors fade. Thats just the nature of the color genes in poodles.
Its something we all have to live with and get used to. A breeder may work their entire life to try and get the color in their
line to stay true and never have it happen. A breeder can not guarantee their puppies color will not fade.
Q. My puppy has incorrect pigment for his or her color. Will this effect their health?
A. No. Again color has nothing to do with the health of a dog. The only things it will effect is
the showability and breedability of the dog. It does not effect how that dog will be as a pet, health or otherwise.
QUESTIONS REGARDING GENETIC TESTING AND DNA TESTING
Q. My puppy comes from genetically tested breeding stock. Does this guarantee that my
puppy will not get any genetically inherited diseases or disorders?
A. Unfortunately genetic testing is never a guarantee of anything. Genetic testing is
a testing of the breeding stock at that point in time. Saying that at the moment this dog was tested he or she was free
of hip dysplasia, heart issues, thyroid issues, knee problems, or skin issues. This is not a guarantee that this dog
will not develope a problem latter in time. There are even some genetic issues that as of yet we do not have tests for.
However, this being said, purchasing from a breeder that does genetic testing and breeds from those "clear" dogs does
mean that you run less of a risk of your puppy/dog having an inherited disease. One must remember that when it
comes to genetics there is no guarantee.
Q. On my AKC papers it says that the dad is DNA'd. This means that this dog has had its genetic
A. No. When you see that a sire or dam has been DNA'd and has a number this means that
a sample of the dogs DNA was taken and put on record in order to prove parentage. DNA can prove without a doubt who
the parents of said puppy are. AKC requires breeders to send in samples of their males DNA after that male has
been used as a Sire a certain number of times. Most females are NOT DNA'd but in cases of questionable parentage
the AKC may request a sample of the dams DNA to again prove parentage.
QUESTIONS REGARDING POODLE TEMPERMENT AND PERSONALITY
Q. Poodles are all yappy, nippy dogs right?
A. Absolutely not. Any dog can be yappy or nippy if they have not been trained and socialized properly.
All dogs need proper training and socialization. Checking around locally and finding a good trainer and going to classes
can go a long way to help your dog be a welcome, happy, and safe member of society.
QUESTIONS REGARDING COAT QUALITY
Q. My poodle does not have a curly coat, does that mean its not a purebred?
A. Again I am not the breeder of this puppy so I can not guarantee that the puppy is purebred. But
a straight coat does not mean the puppy is a mixbreed. A poodle's coat takes a full two years to mature. This
is the same no matter the variety of poodle. Some poodles may take longer to mature and get curl than others. Some
may never get the nice curly, dense coat that the poodle should have. This can be due to a number of things such
as; inferior coat quality of the sire and dam, but is not a guarantee that a poodle is not purebred.
QUESTIONS REGARDING INBREEDING AND LINEBREEDING
Q. My poodle is a product of inbreeding. I never would have purchase it if I had known.
This means my poodle is of poor quality right?
A. Not in most cases. It depends upon how it was done and by whom. You have to
realize that when people started breeding the poodle the gene pool was very very limited with only a limited amount of unrelated
lines. This means that almost every poodle if you go back far enough was inbred and or line bred (you can read about
the difference on my inbreeding VS line breeding page) at some point. Many of the big famous kennels
got to where they were with their top quality poodles by only breeding within their kennel and inbreeding their poodles.
Inbreeding when in the correct and knowledgeable hands can be a great tool. But in the wrong hands can be utter disaster.
When inbreeding you double up on the genes. This means you double up on the bad as well as the good.
To inbreed takes a breeder that knows their lines like the back of their hand. To know what dogs to put together and
to be able to make the hard descisions when they come along. A novice breeder should NEVER try inbreeding or line breeding.
That should be left to the experts.
Q. What is the difference between Line breeding and Inbreeding.
A. In short inbreeding is breeding done between mother and son, father and daughter, and brother
and sister. Breedings between grandfather and granddaughter, grandmother and grandson, half brother and half sister,
neice and nephew, are all considered line breeding. Line breedings are generally considered the better of the two and
are what most of the big kennels have used at one time or another to produce their "lines".
Q: What is an outcrop breeding?
A: An outcrop breeding is a breeding between two dogs whos lines are totally unrelated. The
problem with this in poodles is that there are so few lines, especially in the standard variety, that almost all lines are
related if you go far enough back in the pedigrees.
QUESTIONS REGARDING POODLE GROOMING
Q. I am getting a poodle puppy in a few weeks. I called and talked to a groomer and the groomer
told me that they wouldnt groom my dog until they were 6 months old because "this will cause their fur to not curl like it
would normally" is this true?
A. Absolutely not. Infact poodles do not have "fur" they have hair. A poodles hair
is just like our hair, it grows continually throughout the dogs life. Just like with human hair, cutting
the hair has no baring on hair quality or curl to the hair. A poodles hair takes 2 years to mature. Despite cutting
or not cutting it. Also the younger you can get your puppy into the groomer the better. Its a matter of training
for the first few times of grooming. This early training with grooming sets up a routine for your poodle and makes grooming
much easier on both the dog and the groomer. Waiting till a puppy is 6 months to start grooming is a total disaster.
Often by then a poodle is very matted and makes the first grooming experience traumatic for the puppy. If the puppy
has a bad first experience it can set up a trend for the poodle life and make being groomed a horrible and traumatic experience
for the dog every time. In all reality a poodle puppy should have started its grooming training while with the breeder.
Most breeders will do the first grooming around 3-4 weeks of age. I started my pups at this age with a weekly grooming
up until going home with the new owner. I had many a new owner and the dogs groomer call me and thank me for all the
work I had done early making the puppy a joy to groom and the pups enjoyed it too. This was something that was very
important to me as a professional groomer. There is nothing like being able to spend time grooming a dog that loves
to be groomed.
In this case you can see where its so important to find a good groomer. This is a case
of a groomer that knows nothing about the poodle breed and a good chance they no nothing about dogs at all. They probably
just picked up a book about grooming and decided that is what they wanted to do. This groomer probably has absolutely
no training at all. It is very important when finding a good groomer that you find a groomer that is knowledgeable about
your breed. Ask for references. Ask how many poodles they have groomed. Ask about their training.
Remember a groomer is there to provide a service for YOU. What that service is, is up to you. Be sure you are
getting something you are going to be able to live with.
QUESTIONS REGARDING POODLES IN HOT CLIMATES
Q: I live in a hot climate so I can't have a poodle can I?
A: Poodles are very adaptable and can live in any climate hot or cold. With their wonderful
coats and varieties of trims, keeping them nice looking and feeling cool is very easy.