The Standard Poodle is a noble, beautiful dog with a short, curly or corded coat, distinctive oval eyes and long, floppy ears.
Standing at 24 inches tall and weighing an average of 60 pounds, the Standard Poodle is the largest of the three Poodle breeds (Toy, Miniature and Standard).
Standard Poodles make for fun and active companions. They can also make great family dogs.
Training and early socialization are essential with this breed; there are also several worrying health concerns associated with Standard Poodles. Read on to find out more.
What’s In This Guide
- Standard Poodle At A Glance
- In-depth Breed Review
- Standard Poodle Training And Care
- Pros And Cons Of Getting A Standard Poodle
Standard Poodle FAQs
Here are some of our readers’ most popular and frequently asked questions about the Standard Poodle.
- Are Standard Poodles aggressive?
- Do Standard Poodles make good family dogs?
- Are Standard Poodles high maintenance dogs?
Breed At A Glance
- Popularity: One of the top 10 most popular breeds in the US
- Purpose: Companionship, family dogs
- Weight: Approx. 60 lbs.
- Temperament: Playful, energetic, loving
Standard Poodle Breed Review: Contents
- History and original purpose of the Standard Poodle
- Fun facts about Standard Poodle
- Standard Poodle appearance
- Standard Poodle temperament
- Training and exercising your Standard Poodle
- Standard Poodle health and care
- Do Standard Poodles make good family pets?
- Rescuing a Standard Poodle
- Finding a Standard Poodle puppy
- Raising a Standard Poodle puppy
- Popular Standard Poodle breed mixes
- Standard Poodle products and accessories
The Standard Poodle is a popular dog; in fact, the Poodle breed is the 8th most popular pedigree dog in America.
The Poodle comes in three sizes: Standard, Miniature and Toy. Although these are all categorized as the same breed, there are some important variations between the types.
For this reason, we will be looking only at the Standard Poodle size in this article, to give you the relevant information you are looking for.
History and Original Purpose of the Standard Poodle
The American Kennel Club first recognized the Poodle as a breed in 1887.
The Standard Poodle is thought to have originated from Germany as a breed of water retriever. However, some argue that it is a descendent of the French Barbet dog.
What we do know is that this is an old breed, with a history stretching back to the 15th century at least.
Similarly, the Standard Poodle’s distinctive cut has evolved from the way they were shaved by their hunter owners in the past.
This was because they clipped their rear ends to make it easier for them to swim and retrieve waterfowl. In addition, the bands left at their ankles are supposed to have kept their joints warm in the harsh waters.
Whether this is correct is just speculation isn’t clear.
Does it Apply Today?
What we do know is that these days, Standard Poodles are usually clipped all over when used as gun dogs. It is only show dog Poodles who are shaved in the stereotypical style.
The name “Poodle” is likely a derivation of the word “Pudel” and the word “Puddle”; an association drawn from its water dog routes.
Fun Facts about Standard Poodle
Notable movies such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Look Who’s Talking Now and Edward Scissorhands all starred this adorable breed!
Also, actress Jaclyn Smith famously owned two black Standard Poodles.
Standard Poodle Appearance
Standard Poodles are well proportioned dogs. That is, they are tall with even legs and backs, and a proud stature.
Their eyes are dark ovals, and their ears hang close to their heads. Their skulls are rounded, but with defined flat cheekbones. Overall, they give the impression of elegance and grace.
Their coats come in two different types: curly or corded.
On one hand, the curly Poodle coat is harsh and dense all over, with an even spread of fur.
Standard Poodles come in a fabulous range of colors, from beautiful red Standard Poodles to interesting mixes of colors and markings.
For example, they can come in any of the following solid colors:
- Silver Beige
But There’s More!
There is also a range of bi-colored Poodles:
- Black & Apricot/Brown/Cream/Gray/Red/Silver/Tan/White
- Blue & White
- Brown & Apricot/White
- Cafe Au Lait
- Cream & White
- Gary & White
- Red & Apricot/White
- White & Apricot/Silver
Standard Poodles can also be a mix of colors, usually expressed by distinct markings.
For example, a black Standard Poodle might have white markings, or a red Standard Poodle could have black accents. These could be in the form of:
- Black markings, mask or points; or
- White markings or mask.
However, it is in-demand among Poodle puppy buyers.
Standard Poodles will grow to a minimum of 15 inches tall at the shoulder. Anything under this is classed as a Miniature Poodle.
However, they can grow anywhere up to 24 inches at the shoulder.
The Kennel Club describes this height difference as the main distinguishing feature between the Standard Poodle and the other Poodle sizes. Otherwise, everything else is the same.
This particular breed usually weighs around 60 pounds; but Standard Poodle weight can vary a lot because their heights can vary considerably.
Standard Poodle Temperament
Standard Poodles tend to be active, intelligent dogs.
Whilst they have a reputation for being aloof, this is more a calm reserve with strangers. They are very loving and loyal to members of their family.
This quiet reserve also means that they are likely to be less distracted by other people when you want them to focus.
Additionally, they can be a sensitive dog, who will cringe or cower if you raise your voice to her. Thus, she is best handled gently, reflecting her own soft and adorable nature.
Despite this quiet nature, Standard Poodles can be fans of their own voices. They tend to alert you to visitors, which is a trait that some families appreciate.
If you are not a fan of barking, then make sure to never react to your dog woofing.
Also, the click for quiet technique can be very effective in reducing a noisy dog’s barking. You can find out more about training your Standard Poodle puppy below.
Despite being a highly active dog, a well exercised Poodle will be quite happy to relax and sleep next to you.
For instance, they won’t race around the house; instead, they will be a chilled-out companion as long as they have had sufficient daily exercise.
Training and Exercising your Standard Poodle
Socializing your Standard Poodle puppy is an important way to help ensure that she grows up into a confident, happy adult dog.
This should begin from the day you bring her home at 8 weeks old.
To start, you can carry her outside (until her vaccinations have been completed) to all the places you will want her to feel comfortable when she is older. Let her experience a variety of sites, sounds and smells.
Secondly, make sure you have lots of visitors over to your home, and that they all make her feel happy and comfortable.
All in all, if you let her associate strangers with pleasant experiences, she will be less likely to be wary of them approaching the house when she has grown up.
Despite their stereotype as being posh, stuck-up dogs, the Standard Poodle is actually a very clever and active, hard working dog.
Standard Poodle training is something that both the dog and owner can really enjoy and benefit from. In fact, Standard Poodles excel at co-operating with their handlers and have a great capacity for physical activity.
They also learn very quickly and can be taught numerous tricks and take part in a wide range of canine hobbies.
As sensitive dogs, they work most effectively when trained using positive reinforcement methods.
This will keep them happy and motivated throughout your sessions together, as well as increasing the strong bond between you.
It is vital that you regularly exercise your Standard Poodle, if you want to keep him fit and happy. As examples, they will happily walk, jog, run or play fetch with you every day.
This active dog loves getting outside and stretching his long legs. A well-exercised Poodle will be a more relaxed companion when you get back home.
Exercise is also important to keep your Standard Poodle at a healthy weight (no more than 70 pounds).
Standard Poodle Health and Care
Standard Poodle care is very important. These are not low maintenance dogs. They require daily exercise, training, grooming and frequent company throughout the day.
You should check your Poodle’s ears and eyes regularly to ensure that they are clean and clear.
Standard Poodles are a non-shedding breed. Their curly coats catch loose hairs and prevent the excessive molting that most other breeds of dog experience.
Therefore, it is very important to practice regular grooming and clipping.
Most pet dog owners will have their Standard Poodle clipped to an even length all over.
You will need to clip their coat at least once every four weeks to keep it manageable.
Alternatively, you can use a dog grooming service that is experienced with Poodle fur.
In the meantime, take particular care to ensure that the coat is not getting into their eyes and irritating them or becoming matted around the feet or legs.
Standard Poodles are a pedigree dog breed. Pedigree dogs with small populations like Standard Poodles will have greater problems with inherited diseases.
However, Standard Poodle health can be very good, if you manage to avoid the genetic diseases.
The Happy Cat Handbook - A unique guide to understanding and enjoying your cat!
The best way to get a healthy adult Standard Poodle is to buy a puppy from a Poodle breeder who has health tested both parents for the following potentially problematic disorders.
At the very least, you should ask the breeder whether there is a history of these illnesses in either of the parents’ lines.
Like many large pedigree breeds, the Standard Poodle can suffer from hip dysplasia. This is a condition where a malformation of the hip joint causes osteoarthritis, pain and loss of movement.
You can significantly reduce the chances of getting a Poodle with hip dysplasia by only buying a puppy from parents with good hip scores.
For instance, if you are In the US, make sure both parents’ hips are graded “Excellent” or “Good”. The breed median for a Poodle in the UK is 11, so only buy a puppy from parents whose scores are both under 11. The lower the better.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy
Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) is a genetic condition that leads to blindness in dogs.
Fortunately, there is a DNA test for PRA, and you should ensure that both of your Poodle’s parents have had this test.
You should ask for proof that the puppy’s parents are “both clear” or “one clear and one carrier”.
Von Willebrand’s Disease
Von Willebrand’s Disease (vWD) is an inherited blood clotting disorder, which causes excessive bleeding.
This disease is most common in Standard Poodles, so it’s important to ensure that both parents have had DNA tests for this disorder before you bring your puppy home.
Bloat is a common issue in several large breeds of dog. It occurs when gas causes the stomach to become distended.
To help avoid bloat, feed your dog several smaller meals a day. In addition, you can feed him at ground level and, if necessary, put his food into a slow-feed bowl.
There is no test for cataracts, but you can tell how healthy an adult dog’s eyes are with a veterinary eye test.
Therefore, make sure that both parents have had eye examinations in the past year. The breeder should have certificates for these to show you.
Idiopathic epilepsy is sometimes seen in Standard Poodles. It is thought to be an inherited condition.
Therefore, you should not buy a puppy with a parent or grandparent who has ever had a seizure.
Sebaceous adenitis is an inflammatory skin disease that can affect Poodles. It can cause itching, hair loss, infections, blistering and scaling of the skin.
There is not currently a DNA test for sebaceous adenines. For this reason, it is important to ask your breeder whether any dogs in the line had skin problems. If they did, then you should find another line to buy your puppy from.
Addison’s Disease is an adrenal hormone disorder that causes problems with the dog’s blood composition.
Symptoms can be quite vague and hard for the vet to diagnose. These symptoms include lethargy, gastro-intestinal issues, a low temperature and pain.
There is no current DNA test for Addison’s. Thus, you will need to ask about family
Autoimmune Haemolytic Anemia
Also known as Immune-Mediated Haemolytic Anemia, this condition occurs when the dog’s immune system destroys its own oxygen-carrying red blood cells.
It causes the dog to become lethargic and to have abnormal breathing/pulse rates and pale gums.
There is no current DNA test for Autoimmune Haemolytic Anemia. For this reason, you will need to ask about family history.
To sum up, your puppy’s parents should have had the following tests:
- Hip scores
- Annual eye exams
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy DNA Test
- Von Willebrand’s Disease DNA Test
The Standard Poodle Club is currently funding new DNA research to help with these issues.
Do Standard Poodles Make Good Family Pets?
Standard Poodles are intelligent and active dogs. They also need a lot of time and attention from their families.
For example, this breed is not suited to homes where are out all day, as they will quickly become bored and potentially destructive or depressed.
Instead, they are best suited to very active homes, with a keen interest in training. Ideally, the Poodle’s family will be able to dedicate plenty of physical and mental energy to their canine friend.
Standard Poodles and Children
Standard Poodles generally get along well with calm, sensible children. They are gentle by nature, but also quite tall so can be physically imposing to a small kid.
However, young Poodles, much like any juvenile dog, can be very bouncy. A lively young dog may need to be physically separated from a small child to prevent accidents.
It is important to remember that any dog, however reliable they may seem, should be supervised around small children. This is because dogs and children can accidentally injure each other; keeping a close eye will ensure that you avoid any potential problems or stress for the dog.
Poodles can also be a little sensitive to children’s sudden noises and unpredictable movements.
They can have some guarding instincts, although these tend to be more in the vocal watchdog area.
Rescuing a Standard Poodle
There are many benefits to rescuing a Standard Poodle instead of buying one.
For starters, Standard Poodle adoption means you can sidestep some of the potentially awful health concerns mentioned earlier.
In addition, you will also know whether an adult Poodle has any behavioral or temperament problems.
This will give you a good idea if it’s a good fit for your family, especially if you have young kids.
You can find a list of rescue societies and shelters here.
Finding a Standard Poodle Puppy
Standard Poodle puppies are all beautiful. However, don’t let their cute faces distract you from
the important factors health and temperament.
Your best chance at getting a healthy puppy is to make sure that the Standard Poodle breeders have carried out all available tests on both parents, and to ask lots of questions.
For instance, ask about their family history to try and rule out the chances of certain conditions being passed along.
Also, pay attention to ads that mention if parents are fully health tested.
This will often mean that the hip scores and eye tests have been taken care of. However, it doesn’t mean that vWD and PRA DNA tests have been performed.
Waiting is Normal
When you have found a breeder who fully health tests, you will probably have to go on a waiting list for a puppy.
While you wait, arrange to meet the breeder and their dogs. Make sure that the parents are confident and laid back characters.
For instance, you wouldn’t expect a Standard Poodle to be overly pushy with strangers. However, they should have a relaxed wagging tail, open mouth and cheerful demeanour.
Standard Poodle breeders have a range of prices.
For example, in the USA you can expect to spend anything from $1,500 to $3,000 on a puppy from health-tested parents.
On the other hand, in the UK, the average Standard Poodle ranges from £850 to £1,200.
Health testing, vet checks and good food are all costly necessities.
Raising a Standard Poodle Puppy
So, it is clear that raising a Standard Poodle puppy can be an expensive and time consuming business.
Therefore, we have put together some guides to help you get the most out of those precious first years with your new pup.
Furthermore, check out our selection of guides and information on expert puppy care to get started.
Popular Standard Poodle Breed Mixes
Standard Poodle mixes are very popular right now. Check out our guide to Poodle mixes here.
These dogs can make wonderful pets, too. But, you must be sure to research them as thoroughly as you would a purebred Standard Poodle.
For example, make sure that the parents have had health tests relevant to their breed.
Also, be wary of any breeder who says their mixed puppy will be hypoallergenic. The puppy may take after its Standard Poodle parent or the other parent breed.
If you want a non-shedding puppy then choose a purebred Standard Poodle instead.
Comparing the Standard Poodle with Other Breeds
Take a look at our article comparing Poodles and Labradoodles for a breakdown of the main differences and similarities.
These breeds share some similar characteristics with the Standard Poodle.
Pros And Cons of Getting A Standard Poodle
- Prone to serious health issues
- Quite high maintenance dogs
- Potentially too boisterous for small kids
- Full of energy
- Loyal and loving
- Low-shedding coats
Standard Poodle Products and Accessories
Here’s our list of accessories and products that we recommend for this breed.
- Indestructible dog toys
- Shampoo for Poodles
- Brushes for curly coats
- Pet ID tags that your dog will love
- Dog nail grinders
Standard Poodle Breed Rescues
Do you have a Standard Poodle at home? Let us know why you decided to go for a Standard instead of a smaller Poodle breed, and how your experience has been with this lovely breed.
References And Resources
- IDEXX. “Canine Hip Dysplasia: An Overview.” Pet Health Network. 2018.
- O’Neill, et al. “Longevity and Mortality of Dogs Owned In England.” The Veterinary Journal. 2013.
- American Kennel Club. “Official Standard of the Poodle.” AKC Website. 1984.
- Apres Argent Poodles. “Corded Poodles.” AAP Website. 2019.
- American Kennel Club. “Barbet.” AKC Website. 2019.
- Blackwell EJ, et al. “The relationship between training methods and the occurrence of
behavior problems, as reported by owners, in a population of domestic dogs.” Journal of Veterinary Behavior. 2008.
- Gough A, et al. “Breed Predispositions to Disease In Dogs and Cats.” Wiley Blackwell. 2018.
- Kelawala DN, et al. “Clinical Studies on Progressive Retinal Atrophy in 31 Dogs.” Iranian journal of veterinary research . 2017.
- Thomas J. “Von Willebrand’s Disease in the Dog and Cat.” Veterinary Clinics of North America: Small Animal Practice. 1996.
- Rusbridge C. “Canine idiopathic epilepsy.” In Practice. 2014.
- Pedersen NC, et al. “The effect of genetic bottlenecks and inbreeding on the incidence of two major autoimmune diseases in standard poodles, sebaceous adenitis and Addison’s disease.” Canine Genetics and Epidemiology. 2015.
- Brooks W. “Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia (IMHA) in Dogs and Cats.” Veterinary Partner. 2003.