The Poodle (also known as the French Poodle) is called the Caniche
in France. French customs uses Poodles in searches for illegal substances. The word "poodle" comes from German pudeln
('to splash'), probably because they are gundogs known for their ability in water. Most poodles are intelligent and physically active. Most people think of the poodle as a French breed, but it is an old breed and its original region is a matter of contention. Most experts place the poodle's origin in Germany or Russia, but it's possible the poodle may have come from Iberia.
Poodles come in 3 sizes - Standard (over 15in/38cm at shoulder), Miniature (11in/28cm - 15in/38cm), and Toy (under 11in/28cm). Note that AKC classifies slightly differently, with the maximum height at shoulder for toys and the minimum for miniatures being 10in/25cm.
A poodle's fur is tightly curled or corded. Breed standards call for a solid colored coat (black, white, brown, grey, blue, or apricot). The nose color matches the coat.
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Temperament: The Poodle is a cheerful, intelligent, and sensitive dog. They are great at learning tricks (hence their common appearances in the circus ring). The Poodle should be socialized as a puppy as they tend to be quite reserved with strangers and make very good watchdogs despite their size. Poodles tend to bark a lot, but seldom become agressive. They are also friendly with other pets.
Care: Poodles are subject to many genetic diseases despite being a long-lived breed (12-15 years). Blindness may be caused by cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy. Be careful when using clippers - skin conditions are common in poodles. Also, allergies to shampoo can cause skin problems. Runny eyes and ear infections are common, and poodles are prone to PRA, diabetes, epilepsy and heart disease.
Training: The intelligence of the Poodle make it a fine breed for retrieving, agility, watchdogging, competitive obedience, and performing tricks.