Your guide to the hardworking Toy Poodle

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What comes to mind when you think of Toy Poodles? You probably think of a tiny dog with a geometric haircut to make it look like a garden shrub. 

Also known as a Teacup Poodle or a Teddy Poodle, we’re here to show you some fun facts about the Toy Poodle, and show you they are more than a prissy haircut!

You might be surprised that the toy version of Poodles has unique qualities of its own.

What is a Toy Poodle?

Red Toy Poodle puppy playing with a ball on a gray background
The terms toy, miniature, and standard are just size varieties of one particular breed. As we mentioned earlier, Toy Poodles are the smallest type or toy version of the Poodle.

This breed has been around since at least the 15th century and is believed to have originated in Germany. They were called “pudel,” a German word that means “to splash” as it refers to the type of work that Poodles do – retrieving waterfowls.

But being the 2nd most intelligent breed in the world, owners were able to get their Poodle to do different types of jobs. They were used as military dogs, gun dogs, guide dogs, and even as circus performers!

As Standard Poodles were too big for other kinds of fieldwork such as truffle hunting, Miniature Poodles were bred to complete those tasks. Eventually, breeders had Mini Poodle runts give birth to smaller and smaller puppies until the Toy Poodle arrived in the 18th century.

Toy Poodles still have the same athleticism and intelligence, but they mainly served as companions and circus performers.

What does a Toy Poodle look like?

Toy Poodles have a very distinctive look and a build that reflects its athletic background.

As per its breed standard from the AKC (American Kennel Club), Toy Poodles have a rounded head with a slight stop and have dark, oval-shaped eyes, with adorable, floppy ears hanging close to their head.

Their muzzles are long and slightly chiseled. And depending on their coat color, Toy Poodles can have black noses or liver-colored noses.

Most Toy Poodles have long and high-set tails, but some owners or breeders dock their dog’s tail for aesthetic reasons.

Another fun fact about Poodles is that they have webbed feet (or have more webbing than an average dog). This physical trait helps them paddle and swim really well!

No matter the size, this breed is an agile and graceful fido that carry themselves in a dignified manner.

Just check out these fantastic Toy Poodles strutting after winning in the dog show event of Crufts:

How big does a Toy Poodle get?

Toy Poodles can stand up to 10 inches tall (25 cm) from the top shoulder and can weigh from 6 to 9 pounds (3 to 4 kg). They’ll stop growing or reach their full-grown size between 6 and 7 months of age.

If you would compare them with other size variations, the Miniature Poodle stands from 11 to 15 inches (28 to 38 cm) tall and weighs 15 to 17 pounds (7 to 8 kg).

Standard Poodles have a height of 15 to 22 inches (38 to 56 cm), but some can even grow taller or up to 27 inches (69 cm). Their average weight is around 45 to 70 pounds (20 to 32 kg).

Since this breed is highly trainable and can easily adapt to new environments, all Poodle sizes are suitable to live in different types of houses, even in an apartment.

Coat & Color: Are Toy Poodles hypoallergenic?

Toy Poodles are one of those canines who have a single layer coat, so they’re low- to non-shedders, and they also produce less dander. Some even consider Poodles to be hypoallergenic.

So this is good news for dog lovers who suffer from allergies! Toy Poodles can be an excellent option if you’re looking for an allergy-friendly breed. 

You’ll also love their signature curly and dense fur that comes in several colors such as black, blue, silver, gray, cream, apricot, red, white, brown, café-au-lait, and parti.

These are just some of the primary colors seen in all Poodles, but they have a total of eighteen two-tone combinations that are acceptable in their breed standard!

A Lot of Brain Power in a Tiny Poodle Body

Despite being small, Toy Poodles have the same temperament, intelligence, versatility, and energy as any other Poodle variety. They are recommended for all types of owners as they’re the ultimate companion dog.

But even though they’re excellent family pets, Toy Poodles doesn’t have the best reputation for being around kids. Out of all the size variations, they are the ones who are prone to snapping at little ones because they startle easily and are very suspicious. This goes for other pets, too, such as cats or smaller canines.

Other than that, the Toy Poodle is a social butterfly and enjoys hogging the spotlight. They’ll mingle with and entertain their favorite humans whenever they get the chance just to please them. They’re even tagged as natural clowns!

As they’re a smart breed, don’t even think about not including your tiny Poodle friend from any activity because they’ll figure it out. They’re sensitive creatures, after all.

Toy Poodle Leaping Over a Jump at an Agility Trial

They don’t do well when left alone for long periods, which leads to separation anxiety. You should also be worried about how and where your pooch would channel all that boredom. We’d recommend Toy Poodles in a home where they always have company to avoid unwanted behaviors from developing.

It’s best to use your four-legged friend’s intelligence and trainability in a positive way by training her. With consistency, your fido will eventually be adept at reading body language and gestures to do commands and tricks.

Toy Poodles will be energetic long past their puppy years because they’re naturally athletic and hardworking. It’s probably why they excel at dog sports, as well as jumping and running through agility courses.

This breed is also a great guard dog. They are alert little critters that are ready to bark when a stranger’s around. Poodles, in general, are very observant, so they’ll simply yap at anything unusual.

Some say they can be quite timid. If you notice this with your Teacup Poodle, consistent socialization will cure it and help her be calmer when she’s around people they don’t know.

Maintenance: Taking care of your Toy Poodle

You may not have any problem with the Poodles shedding, but they’re a high maintenance breed. It doesn’t mean it’s not doable, though.

Here are some tips on how you can keep your little Poodle pup in tip-top shape, inside and out.

When and how to groom Toy Poodles

This breed may have gorgeous curls, but their hair can mat or become corded when not groomed daily and adequately.

Your Toy Poodle has to take a bath every three to four weeks, and her fur has to be brushed every day from front to back to keep the coat clean. All this can be done at home, or you can schedule an appointment with your local grooming salon to help you with your doggo. 

Another fact you need to know if you want a Poodle (or any other breed with a Poodle mix, like Doodles), is that they tend to have hair growing inside their ears. To make sure that there’s proper airflow inside the ears and avoid infection, they’ll require ear plucking. If you haven’t heard of it, here’s a video of how it’s done:

Their teeth have to be brushed daily, or at least weekly, to keep oral diseases from developing. We also recommend you take your Poodle in to get a professional oral cleaning at least once a year.

Haircut & hairstyle ideas for your Toy Poodle

A Poodle’s hairstyle (or “clip”) is unique and sends a message about who you are as an owner and your dog’s personality or lifestyle.

Your toy poodle’s hair will always keep growing, but you can keep it manageable by cutting it every 6-8 weeks. Choosing a haircut is one of the fun parts about owning this breed.

If you are showing your Toy Poodle in a conformation event, you can get a variety of AKC-approved hairstyles (which is also available in their breed standard). It includes the Lamb clip, Puppy clip, Sporting clip, English Saddle clip, and the Continental clip.

There is also a whole world of styles outside the AKC-approved clips, like the Teddy Bear cut and Dreadlocks.

How much exercise does a Toy Poodle need?

Despite their small stature, they’re still a Poodle who has the same energy level. As an active dog, they’d grab any chance they get to play fetch, run around, or even go with for walks or a jog around the neighborhood. An hour of exercise a day will be enough to keep them calm indoors and just lay around to rest.

But with all breeds, physical and mental stimulation goes hand in hand. The good thing about Poodles is that they quickly learn patterns and prefer to have a routine so they can anticipate what to do next.

Go ahead and invest in a variety of interactive toys for your little Poo dog to keep her mind sharp and entertain her while staying indoors.

To give you a sense of how lively Toy Poodles are, watch this video of two pups having the case of the zoomies:

Diet: What should you feed your Toy Poodle?

You may often hear that dry kibbles are great for feeding dogs as they have a lot of benefits, such as being readily available, and it’s good for your fur baby’s teeth. When it comes to Toy Poodles, it’s best that you feed her a raw diet to give her real meat and fat with every meal.

It’s a rule that feeding your pet should be based on her size, age, activity level, and if applicable, including health. This breed needs about 22% to 32% protein and around 10% to 20% fats.

For the amount, they should consume 331 to 1325 kcal or ⅔ cup of dog food per day. These numbers are just the average as you would need to feed fewer calories for a less active Toy Poodle. If you have a pooch that works day and night, like those who are innovative hunters, then they’d require more calories.

An issue with Poodles with regards to feeding is food aggression. Some dogs don’t really react much when you try to touch their bowl or chew bone but expect it with this delicate breed. You have to train your pup that she doesn’t have to guard her food so she wouldn’t snap at anyone when they come near her during feeding time. 

Toy Poodle Health and hereditary conditions

Poodles are generally healthy and have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. But as a responsible owner, we should be aware of some health problems that your tiny fido can get genetically, or it can develop as they age.

Some of the minor ailments that Teacup Poodles have are upset stomach and allergies.

Unskillful clipping or allergic reactions usually cause irritations for Toy Poodles. If you notice something unusual with your dog’s skin, like sores, itchiness, or rashes, you can either change her diet or the type of soap she uses during baths. If all else fails, bring your pup to the vet.

Toy Poodles are also prone to developing blocked tear ducts and glaucoma. If your Toy Poodle has runny eyes, check with your vet to diagnose what is causing the problem. 

Shaking is typical in small breeds. There are a few things that might be causing your Poodle to tremble, including low blood sugar, chill due to cold weather or old age, and stress.

For significant health conditions that Toy Poodles could inherit are hip and elbow dysplasia, Cushing’s Disease, Addison’s Disease, Chronic Active Hepatitis, collapsing trachea, epilepsy, and Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease.

Finding & Buying a Toy Poodle

cute Toy Poodle puppies

An average cost of a Toy Poodle puppy is around $1,100. The price can still go up depending on factors such as the breeder’s location, the superior bloodline of the puppies, and how famous the kennel or breeder is. Some can be as expensive as $3,000!

Only deal with breeders who have a waiting list for pups or don’t have an available litter to sell all the time. It would show that they care for the well-being of their breeding stock to get better after the pregnancy and giving birth.

Aside from the usual back and forth questions between you and the seller, request to visit the parent Poodles and the litter. Not only will you get the chance to observe the doggo family’s temperament, but also their environment.

Take this chance to ask if you can take a look at the medical records of the parents of the pup you’re interested in. They should also have an individual file for your pup’s vet visits. 

Toy Poodle breeders

Since the Poodle is a purebred, it will be easy to check if their dogs are registered with known clubs and associations like the AKC, The Poodle Club of America, or the UKC.

While we have you here, these websites have available Toy Poodle puppies for sale, and their kennel might be near you! Start your search by checking them out:

Adopting a Toy Poodle

People will sometimes place their Toy Poodle up for adoption due to personal reasons such as financial or care issues. And these dogs, both young and old, are waiting for a second chance to find love and a home that would keep them for the rest of their lives.

It’s also cheaper as the average cost of adopting is around $300. It’s like a donation and a payment for the care, vaccinations, and even the training they had during their stay at the shelter.

Here are some sites where you can rescue, adopt, or rehome a Toy Poodle:

Adorable Toy Poodle mixes

It’s no surprise that Poodles are always a candidate for creating mixes, especially the Toy version. They have uniquely cute faces, a curly and hypoallergenic coat, admirable temperament, and intelligence.

That’s why new Doodles and Poodle crossbreeds keep popping up left and right! For now, here are Toy Poodle hybrids that will enchant you into saying “aww!”

Cavapoo (Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Poodle mix)

Maltipoo (Maltese and Poodle mix)

Yorkie Poo (Yorkshire Terrier and Poodle mix)

Cockapoo (Cocker Spaniel and Poodle mix)

Labradoodle (Labrador Retriever and Poodle mix)

Schnoodle (Schnauzer and Poodle mix)

Peekapoo (Pekingese and Poodle mix)

Pros & Cons: Should you get a Toy Poodle?

gray Toy Poodle resting on a pink pillow on a white background

Have I convinced you that the Toy Poodle is much more than the cultural stereotypes? Toy Poodles are like little scholars with a small build and a cute face.

They’re like the Standard Poodle but fun-sized, meaning they’re great for small spaces like apartments! They may be high maintenance when it comes to grooming, but aside from that, they just require your love and attention, as well as daily mental and physical stimulation.

This hardworking dog will want to be your companion for life and will show you its affection throughout its life.

Do you want a Toy Poodle? Do you already have one? Share your story with us!

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