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Poodles, one of the oldest breeds of dog in the world, are believed to have originated in Germany as a water retriever. They have worked in virtually every capacity a dog is capable of filling. From cart-pulling draught animal to parlour-room trickster, from sled dog to assistive guide dog, from warrior to rest-home companion, from truffle-hound to eminently competent bird dog, and from watchdog to show ring master, the poodle excels at everything it sets its mind to.
Poodles are highly intelligent, very loyal, proud, loving, sensitive and fun. They seem to understand our every mood. They enjoy the challenges of obedience training, which gives these intelligent dogs great happiness. They can also have a playful sense of humor.
A very active and elegant-looking dog, they are squarely built, well proportioned, move soundly and carry themselves proudly. Properly clipped in the traditional fashion and carefully groomed, the Poodle has about itself an air of distinction and dignity peculiar to itself.
The poodle's eyes are very dark, oval in shape and positioned far enough apart to create an alert, intelligent expression.
The coat is either curly, and of naturally harsh texture and density throughout, or corded and hanging in tight even cords of varying length. The coat is an even, solid color at the skin. All three Poodle varieties come in a plethora of solid colors including white, black, blue, gray, silver, silver beige, brown, cafe-au-lait, apricot, reds, and cream. The coat may show varying shades of the same color. This is sometimes present in the darker feathering of the ears and in the tipping of the ruff. Brown and cafe-au-lait Poodles have liver-colored noses, eye-rims and lips, dark toenails and dark amber eyes. Black, blue, gray, silver, cream and white Poodles have black noses, eye-rims and lips, black or self colored toenails and very dark eyes. The apricots have liver-colored noses, eye-rims and lips, and amber eyes.
As could be expected, the miniature and toy varieties of the breed are much more popular than the larger standard variety. In temperament, the larger dog is more docile, with a regal, ladies-and-gentlemen personality. He is less active on his own but needs a fair amount of exercise, is stable in temperament, sociable with children, a good watch dog, and a passable guard dog. He is highly intelligent, learns quickly, and has strong problem-solving ability.
Generally, although the smaller poodles share the Standard's intelligence, they are much more active indoors and out; less stable, especially with children; more demanding of attention and frequently are yappy.
Glamorous and graceful, the poodles with its unique coat, which never sheds; its graceful movement, combined with its aristocratic looks and gentle personality, have made it one of the most widely owned dogs of the 20th century.
*Poodles can be expected to live longer than most other breeds of dogs often reaching 14 or 15 years. They maintain their playfulness and physical dexterity well into their senior years. With such a rich and varied history, the poodle is a master of all trades and one of the finest companions any human could ever hope for.