The poodle is a dog that has been through an evolution over its history. Despite the strong connection to France that has grown over the last few centuries, the poodle originated in Germany. Hunters in Germany were the first to identify the traits that would lead to the breed becoming one of the most popular working dogs in history. Almost every characteristic the poodle is known for can be traced back to its history as a German working dog.
An Intelligent Working Dog
Several studies have been completed to measure the intelligence of various breeds, including the poodle. The poodle ranks as the second-most intelligent breed in the world, according to the American Kennel Club. The AKC explained the poodle is super intelligent, with a talent for complex problem-solving and the ability to complete tasks beyond the majority of other breeds.
The intelligence of the poodle made them a favorite with hunters in Germany, who saw their intelligence and athleticism as an advantage. The working life of poodles saw their ability to swim used to retrieve ducks and geese from lakes and rivers. The soft mouth of the poodle made them a perfect choice for completing this task.
Three Sizes of the Same Breed
The poodle has three sizes all classified as the same breed at kennel clubs around the world. A poodle can be a standard, miniature, or toy, with European breeders recognizing the Moyen size as a fourth option. The different sizes of the poodle range from between 22 and 27 inches in height for the Standard to the miniature standing between 11 and 15 inches. The toy poodle is the smallest member of the breed, with a toy standing less than ten inches.
The physical characteristics of the three poodle sizes are similar, with all three intelligent and energetic. Among the reasons for the popularity of the poodle is its hypoallergenic hair that limits shedding. Over the course of its history, the poodle has become a popular family dog because of its lack of shedding and disease resistance.
A poodle continues to grow hair throughout its life and does not shed. The continued hair growth can lead to matting without regular grooming. The traditional haircut of poodles, with their hindquarters shaved down and the front of their body left long is a throwback to their working days. The hair of the poodle would take on water and struggle to keep moving in the water. By leaving the hair long at the head and chest, the poodle can remain warm during cold weather.
One of the most famous fans of the poodle breed was Elvis Presley, the “King of Rock and Roll” owned a poodle named CHampagne during his army days in Germany. The list of famous poodle owners is a long one and includes British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Marilyn Monroe.