Poodles – they’re head-turning pooches that come in a number of shapes and sizes, from a tiny teacup poodle to the much larger standard poodle. What they all have in common is their distinctive corded or curly coat which is generally one solid colour all over. A poodle’s wavy coat grows constantly, and unlike many other breeds, when their coats shed they don’t malt the hair, leaving it trapped to form mats.
Owners get to have lots of fun with their poodles, with some styling their hair into pom poms from their feet to the tail, even sometimes shaving shapes into the coat! This breed requires plenty of grooming to keep it healthy, mat free and looking its best.
Because of its coat, poodles need essential brushing and combing through at least twice a week. Pay special attention to around the legs, as this is an area prone to matting. Once you’ve brushed out your poodle you can go through the coat again with a pin comb to thoroughly check you have caught every mat and tangle. A natural bristle brush will gently tease the areas with longer hair, and a slicker brush will pull out matted or dead hair.
Trimming and clipping your poodle is quite an art form for many owners. You can opt for a complete shave down or some like to keep their poodle as rounded and as fluffy as possible. Depending on your preference and based on the activities your pooch gets up to, research all of the cuts and how to perform them before letting loose on your poodle. Most poodles will need regular trimming of hair around their eyes, which often hangs over their forehead blocking their view. Use a pair of canine trimming scissors to do this carefully. Getting your poodle used to this at a young age will help to relax them when the time comes around, meaning they’ll move around less and be more accustomed to the routine.
Poodles are a breed which are treated to baths much more than other dogs. It’s advised a monthly bath will help keep your poodle clean and healthy and help with the grooming process too, however some groomers bathe theirs weekly. Massage a dog shampoo into your poodle’s coat as rubbing can cause matting.
Nails should be clipped so they don’t touch the ground when the poodle stands. You can use a pair of doggy nail clippers or a sanding tool to grind down the nail. Be careful not to cut the quick, which is the pinky squidgy part of the nail where the blood supply is. Frequent trimming of the nail tends to make the quick recede, so this is something to bear in mind if your dog’s nails grow fast. Lighter coloured poodles sometimes get a darker coloured staining around their eyes and mouth. There are such things as doggy stain removers out there on the shelves, and frequent wiping can keep the discolouring at bay for longer.