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Featured Breed : Toy Poodle

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Toy Poodle

Life Span:~14 to 18 years
Litter Size: 2 to 5
Country of Origin: Germany

Size: Toy Poodles are small, elegant but always lively dogs with an alert expression and an athletic build. They typically stand 10 inches or under at the highest point of the shoulder and weigh approximately 6 pounds

Coat: The Poodle’s coat comes in a range of colors: apricot, black, blue, brown, café-au-lait, cream, gray, red, silver, silver beige, and white. Parti-colored Poodles are two-tone, including black and apricot, black and brown, black and cream, black and gray, black and red, black and silver, black and tan, black and white, blue and white, brown and apricot, brown and white, cream and white, gray and white, red and apricot, red and white, white and apricot, white and silver. Phantom poodles have tan areas that are somewhat similar to the points on a Doberman Pinscher.

Character: Poodles do not like to be left alone for hours on end. They love being around people and are able to form bonds with each member of the family, as opposed to bonding with just one person. Poodles are ideal family dogs, being both patient and playful with children—Toy Poodles be slightly less patient with young children. They also make superb watchdogs, barking zealously when strangers approach the home.

Appearance: The Toy Poodle has a small but graceful frame with a rounded skull, a medium-length head and muzzle, dark oval eyes and wide, close-hanging ears. They have docked tails (usually) and compact, webbed feet. The coat is sometimes curly and wiry, sometimes soft and wavy, and can be any solid color. Grooming styles include the “pet clip” (short all over), the “Continental clip” (the hindquarters shaved, half of the tail and the upper half of the legs) “English saddle clip” (same as the “Continental Clip” except the hindquarters are not shaved). Most show dogs are presented with the “Continental Clip.”

History: Though Poodles have lived in Europe for centuries, no one knows for sure where they originated. Some claim Germany, but the consensus seems to be France, where they are considered a beloved national breed. Descended from the now-obsolete French Water Dog, the Poodle (most likely named from the German word Pudel, or “plays in water”) was used to retrieve waterfowl for hunters. Poodles were prized for their intelligence and good manners, eventually being used in circuses and dog shows and, of course, as companions. The Standard Poodle is believed to be the oldest of the three Poodle versions. Miniature Poodles and Toy Poodles were most likely bred from the larger Standard Poodles, but all three are judged in the same categories.

Health Issues: This dog has a lifespan of 14 to 18 years and may suffer from minor diseases like trichiasis, entropion, cataract and lacrimal duct atresia, and major aliments like progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, patellar luxation, and epilepsy. Urolithiasis and intervertebral disk degeneration are sometimes noticed in the breed. To identify some of these issues, a veterinarian may run hip, knee, and eye exams on the dog.

Temperament: The pert and peppy toy poodle is one of the brightest and easiest breeds to train. They are alert, responsive, playful, lively, sensitive and eager to please. This breed is very dedicated to its family. Some dogs can be shy in front of strangers and some may bark too much. As the energetic and sprightly Toy Poodle is among the brightest of breeds, it is a pleasure to train -- eager to please, responsive, alert, sensitive, playful, and lively.

Care: Poodles need a lot of interaction with people. They also need mental and physical exercise. The toy poodle's exercise needs can be met with a short walk or even indoor games. This is not a breed that should ever live outside, although they enjoy access to a yard. Their coat should be brushed every day or two. Poodle hair, when shed, does not fall out but becomes caught in the surrounding hair, which can cause matting if not removed. Clipping should be done at least four times a year, with the face and feet clipped monthly. Although most poodles are professionally groomed, poodle parents can learn to groom their own dog.

Training: This is the star trait for this breed. Their ability to learn almost most anything has done a lot to keep its popularity high throughout all these years. In circuses it was trained to learn skills such as walking on its hind legs, skipping, performing card tricks, and even playing dominoes. Training techniques that work well for Toy Poodles include treats, toys, and most importantly praise. Because of their personalities rewarding with praise is a great way to get them to learn new tricks.

Activity: Poodles excel at performance activities such as agility and obedience. They are active dogs who thrive on attention and learning. There’s a reason they used to be popular circus performers.
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