The Miniature Poodle dog breed is hard to beat when it comes to pets. A small, agile and intelligent pup with a low shedding, curly coat, this mini Poodle type has a playful, inquisitive personality and gets on well with people of all ages. Miniature Poodles have a range of colors including apricot, red, grey, brown and white, and patterns like parti. They reach up to 15 inches in height when full grown. Despite its name and small size, they are the medium of three Poodle varieties. Much smaller than the Standard and a little bigger than the Toy. This family friendly, affectionate companion can also make a great working, retrieving, therapy or service dog too. A healthy, energetic, proud and elegant breed, they can live up to 18 years.
- Miniature Poodle origins
- Colors, shedding and grooming
- Temperament and behavior traits
- Training and exercise
- Miniature Poodle puppies
In the right home with an active family, the Miniature Poodle makes an excellent companion. If you want a pup that’s cute, loyal, child friendly, a breeze to train, and doesn’t take up much space. This could be your dream dog.
However, if you hate grooming and can’t afford a professional to clip your pet, or if you don’t like long walks or ball games, then you might need to think again. Despite being small enough for your lap, the fun loving mini poodle is more athlete than couch potato and needs an hour or so of exercise each day. Miniature Poodles excel at agility and obedience and will love to accompany you on a jog around the park.
The Miniature Poodle is a beautiful, curly-coated dog breed. Originally bred as a hunting companion, they now make loyal pets and intelligent agility dogs. Some may think of Poodles as divas who would rather sit pretty on a cushion than get dirty, but au contraire!
Poodles began as duck-hunting dogs nearly 400 years ago. Contrary to what some may think, these hunting dogs were bred in Germany, not France. That’s right, there’s no such thing as a French Poodle.
Even though their luxurious coats look ready for a show, they kept the water-loving dogs warm as they retrieved game for their masters. The Poodle’s ancestors rose in popularity across Europe, but not just as duck hunters. Poodles became known for their success as truffle hunters, military dogs and even circus dogs!
- The French name for the Poodle is Caniche, which is a derivative of the French word for female duck.
The English word Poodle is derived from the German, Pudel, which is derived from another German word meaning “splash in water.”
- After decades away from the hunting field, the breed is making a resurgence there as more and more Poodles are being used in hunting. Poodles are considered the second most intelligent dog breed. It’s no wonder the breed is so popular. In fact, they’re so popular, they’re probably the most recognizable dog breed.
Miniature Poodle Appearance
You don’t have to be a dog expert to know a Mini Poodle when you see one. Their curly coat is often clipped in distinctive patterns. Underneath all that fur is a surprisingly well built little dog. The Mini Poodle has a square conformation so that its weight is evenly distributed across all four legs with no undue pressure on the dog’s back. This give Poodles power and balance and enables them to jump much higher than their own body height, and to turn and twist at speed.
The Miniature Poodle has a nice level back, tight feet and an even gait which adds to the balanced, elegance of the dog. Their long straight muzzle enables the Poodle to cool efficiently and their bright intelligent button eyes are set in a pretty face framed by ears that hang neatly down on either side.
The result of this, even though it may be hidden under those gorgeous curls is a little athlete of a dog that is capable of both endurance, and of great bursts of energy.
How big is a fully grown Miniature Poodle?
Full grown, the Miniature Poodle may reach from 10 to 15 inches tall at the shoulder. Miniature Poodle weight ranges between 10 and 15 pounds.
A balanced diet appropriate to your dog’s age is important. You’ll want to monitor your dog’s caloric intake and weight. Don’t forget to include treats in that calculation.
Any dog will become overweight if fed too much or not given enough exercise. Because excess weight will exacerbate some of the health issues facing Miniature Poodles, it’s important to avoid it.
Miniature Poodle Coat Colors
Miniature Poodles are typically a single solid color, with several beautiful shades that highlight their beautiful curls. Here are the coat colors for show-quality Miniature Poodles (those who meet registration requirements):
- Silver Beige
If a breeder tries to sell you a bicolored Miniature Poodle as show-quality, know that the AKC does not accept bicolored Miniature Poodles or any color other than those listed above.Sometimes, the color names used are more fun, such as mini chocolate Poodle for a brown pup.
Miniature Poodle Grooming
How you keep a Miniature Poodle’s coat determines how much maintenance is needed.
If you keep your pup fully furred and unclipped, her curls or waves will require daily brushing. The fur closest to her skin will quickly become matted if not carefully groomed.
Because of their high-maintenance coat, most owners opt to clip their pup. There are several popular cuts that require varying degrees of maintenance.
If you keep her coat clipped short overall, you may be able to get away with less brushing and combing.
You’ll need to plan for visits to the groomer every four to six weeks to maintain the cut and trim her nails.
If you keep her coat partially clipped and partially long, then you’ll still need to maintain her long hair with daily brushing/combing. The clipped areas will need re-clipping every four to six weeks.
Shedding and Allergies
Their long and thick curly or wavy coat is iconic. Sometimes, you’ll see a Poodle with his hair clipped short. He may be only partially clipped, with only a few parts (typically the head, ears, chest, and legs) fully furred.
While this clip may seem like a fashion statement, it served a purpose back in the day. It protected the hunting dog’s vulnerable parts from cold and aided in swimming.
Today, clipping makes grooming easier for owners as their medium length coat requires regular attention. Regardless of how you keep his coat, a Miniature Poodle will bless you with a dramatic lack of shedding. He will still shed, but minimally: Every dog sheds at least a little.
Although they are a low shedding breed, they do still produce dander. This means that somone with a severe dog allergy could react to their salivia or contact with their fur.
Miniature Poodle Temperament
Poodles are generally friendly, and the Mini Poodle is no exception. However, they can be a little shy and leery of strangers. That, combined with their love and loyalty to their owners, means that some may growl at strangers. In extreme cases, they may bite.
Therefore, it’s important that you socialize a Miniature Poodle with new people and animals from puppyhood onward. Other than a possible distrust of strangers, Poodles are very intelligent dogs who are eager to please. They are easy to train and enjoy having their smarts and retrieving capabilities put to the test!
Training and Exercise
Because they are so intelligent and eager to please, training is relatively easy. However, that intelligence requires that you are consistent and positive in your training efforts.
These dogs can be rather rambunctious little critters who enjoy about an hour of daily play time and plenty of interaction with their owners.
A bored Miniature Poodle will be an unhappy one, so this breed is best suited for a household that will keep them entertained, even if in short spurts.
Since their descendants were bred as working dogs, it’s natural that they prefer something to occupy their bodies and minds! Toss a toy around for a Mini Poodle, and he’ll be happy to continuously fetch it for you. Just be sure to let him take a quick power nap in your lap in between games of fetch.
Miniature Poodle Health and Care
Like any purebred dog, Miniature Poodles are susceptible to several inherited health conditions. In addition to the health conditions found in those articles, they may also be prone to the following:
Generally found in small and older dogs, it’s caused by tumors on the adrenal gland. Once Cushing’s has been diagnosed, the dog may require lifelong medication, surgery to remove the tumor(s) and/or radiation therapy.
According to a 2002 study, Miniature Poodles seem prone to inherited diabetes. As with humans, diabetes in a dog requires lifelong insulin therapy.
Mitral Valve Disease
A malfunction of a heart valve causing blood to leak from one chamber in the heart to another, often referred to as leaky valve disease.
This progressive condition is exactly what it sounds like. This makes the dog unable to breathe normally and may cause coughing. Medication is required to help the dog breathe normally, and surgery is a last resort to correct the deformity.
This is an inherited, allergic or secondary inflammation of the eyelid that closely resembles conjunctivitis (pink eye), in which the eyelid is red, swollen and itchy, sometimes with a clear or yellow discharge. Constant drainage can lead to loss of pigment or fur around the eye.
Degenerative Disc Disease
This is the spontaneous slippage or rupture of the discs that reside between the spinal vertebrae due to trauma or degeneration due to age. This is painful and can lead to hind-end paralysis. In some instances, genetic testing can identify dogs that carry the genes responsible for health problems. Dogs who are known carriers of these genes should not be used for breeding.
Miniature Poodle Lifespan
As a smaller dog, Miniature Poodles typically enjoy a longer life expectancy. Their lifespan ranges from 10 to 18 years. Most Mini Poodles live about 14 years and some make it all the way to 18!
Miniature Poodle Puppies
Anyone can breed a dog and sell the puppies. In most countries, there are no laws restricting or regulating dog breeding. That means that there are good dog breeders and there are bad dog breeders.
The worst breeders don’t care about the animals other than how much money they can make. So, you need to pick your puppy supplier very carefully indeed. Be sure to do your research on breeders before selecting a Miniature Poodle puppy.
As mentioned, show-quality Poodles are one color, so be wary of any breeders who advertise “show-quality” bicolored puppies. Select a breeder who uses genetic testing to prevent passing on undesired traits to help ensure the health of your puppy. Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions. Good breeders will appreciate your diligence.
A good breeder will keep their breeding stock and puppies healthy, at a good weight and in clean and spacious living conditions. Avoid any breeder whose dogs appear in poor health and/or dirty quarters.
These breeders may not want to let you see all their dogs. You should ask to see the mother with her pups. If the father is available, it’s good to meet him too.
Miniature Poodle Prices
Prices for Miniature Poodle puppies depend on how many are available, how much the breeder has invested in the puppies’ health and how valuable the parent dogs are to the breeder.
Additionally, some colors are more popular than others (hello, gorgeous apricot Poodles!). Therefore, you may pay more for a pup with a highly desired coat color.
Show-quality Miniature Poodle puppies will cost more than non-show-quality puppies.
In general, you can expect to pay anywhere from several hundred dollars to roughly $2,000 for a purebred Miniature Poodle puppy. Of course, you should understand what’s involved in raising a puppy before you bring one home.