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When Poodles Lose Their Puppy Coat – Controlling the Transition

Dr. Paula Simons

Reviewed by: Paula Simons, DVM

Dog lovers buy or adopt poodles for many reasons. They’re incredibly smart, easy-to-train, great companions, and have beautiful coats. What you might not realize is that their puppy coat is going to change.

Poodle puppies have that gorgeous wavy coat when they’re born. Their coats are designed to help them regulate body temperature.

As your puppy turns into an adult dog, he/she will experience a coat change. In fact, the puppy’s fur will transform into an entirely new coat type. You can expect a thicker, stiffer coat.

It’s possible that your poodle puppy may end up with hair that is a totally different color at by the time they have matured.

Show Dog Poodle Breed Standard (Coat)

Thinking of entering your poodle into a dog show? Show dogs must meet certain breed standards. This is true of miniature poodle, toy poodle, puppy poodles, and adult poodles.

The American Kennel Club requires the following official standard of the poodle coat.

The Coat

The adult poodle coat should have a naturally harsh texture and should be dense throughout.
Dogs with corded fur (hanging in different lengths of tight cords) should be longer on the mane, head, and ears. It should be shorter, however, on the puffs, bracelets, and pompoms.

Poodles under 12 months of age can have the Puppy Clip. The puppy cut means the dog’s coat can remain longer. The face, feet, throat, and base of the tail are shaved.

Poodles over 12 months of age must have a Continental or English Saddle clip.

The Puppy Coat Transition Period

A poodle puppy has much different hair than an adult poodle. As puppies, poodles have soft, wavy hair.

The adults, however, tend to have thick and curly hair. All puppies transition out of their puppy coats, but it happens a little differently for toy and miniature poodles.

Toy & Miniature Puppy Coats

The process of transitioning from puppy coats to adult coats begins at about 9 months of age for these toy breeds. It will take them another 9 months (approximately) to change to their adult coat.

Standard Poodle

Transitioning from puppy coats to adult coats is a quicker process in standard poodles. You can expect the change to begin at around 9 months. The whole process will take about 3 more months to complete.

Toy poodles lose their puppy coats at 9 months of age

Dog lovers buy or adopt poodles for many reasons. They’re incredibly smart, easy-to-train, great companions, and have beautiful coats. What you might not realize is that their puppy coat is going to change.

Poodle puppies have that gorgeous wavy coat when they’re born. Their coats are designed to help them regulate body temperature.

As your puppy turns into an adult dog, he/she will experience a coat change. In fact, the puppy’s fur will transform into an entirely new coat type. You can expect a thicker, stiffer coat.

It’s possible that your poodle puppy may end up with hair that is a totally different color at by the time they have matured.

Show Dog Poodle Breed Standard (Coat)

Thinking of entering your poodle into a dog show? Show dogs must meet certain breed standards. This is true of miniature poodle, toy poodle, puppy poodles, and adult poodles.

The American Kennel Club requires the following official standard of the poodle coat.

The Coat

The adult poodle coat should have a naturally harsh texture and should be dense throughout.
Dogs with corded fur (hanging in different lengths of tight cords) should be longer on the mane, head, and ears. It should be shorter, however, on the puffs, bracelets, and pompoms.

Poodles under 12 months of age can have the Puppy Clip. The puppy cut means the dog’s coat can remain longer. The face, feet, throat, and base of the tail are shaved.

Poodles over 12 months of age must have a Continental or English Saddle clip.

The Puppy Coat Transition Period

How to avoid matting in your poodle hair

A poodle puppy has much different hair than an adult poodle. As puppies, poodles have soft, wavy hair.

The adults, however, tend to have thick and curly hair. All puppies transition out of their puppy coats, but it happens a little differently for toy and miniature poodles.

Toy & Miniature Puppy Coats

The process of transitioning from puppy coats to adult coats begins at about 9 months of age for these toy breeds. It will take them another 9 months (approximately) to change to their adult coat.

Standard Poodle

Transitioning from puppy coats to adult coats is a quicker process in standard poodles. You can expect the change to begin at around 9 months. The whole process will take about 3 more months to complete

Grooming Your Poodle’s Hair to Avoid Headaches

Unless you plan to enter your poodle into a dog show, you may choose to keep the hair clipped short. It’s important to brush a full-coated Poodle (adult) right down to the skin. This is because the hair will mat near the roots.

If matting occurs, the hair may need to be shaved off. Regular grooming is important to avoid nasty tangles.

The Best Brush to Use on a Standard Poodle or Poodle Puppy Hair

The three main grooming tools for hair maintenance include slicker brushes, de-matting combs, and pin brushes. There are countless brands of each of varying quality and price.

You don’t have to spend a fortune for good quality grooming tools. For example, some slicker brushes from Chewy.com are under $20.

The following links are affiliate links. This just means that if you click on a link and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission.

Frisco Slicker Brush

This brush is designed not to irritate your pet’s skin. The de-shedding brush features angled teeth to help remove dead hair and tough tangles. It has plastic-coated pins to avoid pain and discomfort.

Bass Brushes with Bamboo Dark Finish

Classically beautiful brush with premium alloy pins. This brush glides effortlessly through Poodle coats. Aids in releasing tangles and mats.

Hertzko Self-Cleaning Dog & Cat Slicker Brush

This is the perfect slicker brush for thick fur. It’s an easy-to-use grooming tool with slightly curved bristles. This design really helps to penetrate thick skin without hurting your dog.

FURminator Firm Slicker Brush for Large Dogs

FURminator really knows what they’re doing. Their brushes have a way of working remarkably well without a lot of hard work. You get double duty with this brush because it features straight bristles on one side and bent bristles on the other.

Perfect for medium, long, and curly coats. The dual flex head design allows you to easily follow the natural curves of your dog’s body.

The Best De-Matting Tools Under $20

It’s going to be impossible to brush your poodle’s coat if there are mats and tangles. That’s why you need a dematting tool as well. You don’t need a whole arsenal of supplies, but a good slicker brush and dematting comb is essential.

The following dematting tools are available at Chewy.com (affiliate links) for less than $20 dollars.

Pet Republique

This de-matting rake features a 6-tooth side for working out tangles and a 11-tooth side for thinning fur.

The stainless-steel teeth are hygienic and easy to clean. This is perfect for grooming long-haired dogs like the Labrador Retriever.

Safari De-Matting Dog Comb

This comb comes with extra-sharp, serrated blades. There’s no worry about pulling your dog’s hair and causing pain with this comb. Comes with rounded ends for safety.

Arthritis in your hands? This comb has a comfort grip, anti-slip rubberized handle. Fits easily in your hand and helps prevent hand and wrist strain.

Master Grooming Tools

This line of grooming combs is designed to be ergonomic. This is especially useful if you’re doing a lot of brushing and combing.

Left-handed? This is one of the rare combs that is reversible for left-handers.

Li’l Pals Double-Sided Dog Comb

Features 32 closely spaced stainless steel teeth on one side, and 17 on the other. Perfect for detangling fur.

How to Brush Your Poodle

Start with the legs and brush the entire body by having them lie sideways. Brush one side at a time.

Brush around the face and the ears carefully. Avoid the eyes as much as possible. Comb mats and tangles gently. If the hair is severely matted, and you can’t work the mat out with your fingers or a brush, the hair may need to be clipped.

If you’re uncomfortable or need help, it’s always a good idea to visit a professional groomer.

Best Video on How to Brush Your Puppy or Adult Poodle

It’s one thing to try and explain how to brush a poodle and another thing to show you in a video. The following video is excellent at showing you exactly how to do it, and what types of brushes to use.

.The following video is brought to you by Love of Grooming. Subscribe to the channel!

How to Brush your Poodle | Which Brushes and Combs to use on Poodles

Soften with Conditioning Spray

Using conditioning spray during the grooming process will help to avoid potential tangles.

Conditioning spray isn’t absolutely necessary, but it can help ease the frustration of trying to de-tangle your poodle’s coat. When looking for conditioning sprays, try to find ones that are:

  • pH balanced
  • Tearless if possible
  • Not overly perfumed
  • Anti-static
  • Has at least 4 star reviews
  • Comes in an easy-to-use spray bottle

What to Expect from Poodle Puppy Hair

Are you a new poodle pet owner? You might be surprised to learn that poodle puppies rarely shed but can still have loose hairs. You’ll find them in their sleeping areas, for example.

As your poodle puppy’s hair transitions, he/she may have a shaggy coat or a patchy coat. As the adult hair grows at advanced stages, you might spot changes in color or pattern and a denser coat.

Hypoallergenic Concerns

Poodles are considered hypoallergenic. There are very rare cases where some extremely sensitive people have experienced mild allergic reactions to the dog’s dander. For most people, however, the poodle’s coat is ideal for allergy sufferers.

A poodle has hair that contains some dandruff which can cause allergic reactions to sensitive people. Generally, all dogs have some allergenic microscopic elements that cause sensitive people allergic symptoms once shed.

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Do Poodles Shed?

Poodles do not shed in the way that other dogs may. Yes, they may lose some hair here and there, but it usually falls back onto the dog. If you’re looking for a non-shedding dog, the poodle is for you.

Single coat breeds are considered hypoallergic since they do not shed.

A poodle is a hypoallergenic dog, meaning that it does not cause many problems for most people with dog allergies.

The frequency by which poodles shed their skin dramatically reduces the amount of the allergens.

Poodle’s Coat Problems

Like any dog, poodles can have problems with their coat and skin. Here are a few you should be aware of:

Allergies

Dogs can have an allergic reaction to a variety of things including food additives, dust, mold, pollen, etc. The itching and scratching that results can sometimes lead to hair loss.

Sebaceous Adenitis

This is a hereditary skin disease that causes the coat to thin or fall out. This disease can be stopped if breeders test for it before breeding their dogs.

Hypothyroidism

Dogs (including poodles) with hypothyroidism may have hair that becomes very thick. It may even have an abnormal texture.

Summary

Poodle owners take great pride in their dogs. They understand the unique intelligence, strength, and personality these dogs have. Understanding the poodle puppy coat and the best way to groom it is important.

Of course, other factors that contribute to healthy poodle coats include a good diet, regular grooming, keeping the nails trim, brushing your dog’s teeth, training, and getting ahead of any skin problems before they get worse.

Poodles are very special dogs that are a joy to have around. Coat maintenance may seem intimidating at first, but as you get more familiar with the hair growth cycle and all it entails, you’ll be a pro in no time.

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