Are Poodles Good Dogs? [The Truth]

We all know a poodle when we see one. The breed is known for its curly, fluffy fur that owners like to cut, shave, and style in funky ways.

Due to the pristine appearance of this breed in dog shows, the Poodle has the unfortunate reputation of being a prissy dog. But this couldn’t be farther from the truth

This affectionate, intelligent, athletic dog has some remarkable traits! Like any breed, they do have some issues that you need to be aware of.

So, are Poodles good dogs? The short answer here is yes, Poodles are good dogs. But let’s take a closer look at what makes them excellent pets. 

About a Poodle’s Temperament

If you’re wondering if Poodles are good dogs, their temperament is the perfect place to start. Poodles have one of the most attractive temperaments you can find in a dog breed. They are smart, entertaining, loyal, and friendly. 

happy poodle outside on grass
A happy Poodle running outside on the grass

In general, poodles are just good dogs. They love people, and they’re super loyal to their families. They are adoring pets who love to be by your side – sometimes a little too much! 

These high-energy dogs love to play and interact with their owners. That being said, they do require plenty of exercise (or walks), or else they can quickly become distressed and destructive. 

Poodles can be pretty goofy at times, too. They’re often cited as jumpy dogs, quite literally because they love to jump. This is worth noting, as it may be a behavior you want to avoid. 

But even after they’ve done something bad, you can’t help but smile at these loving, happy dogs. They make excellent pets, and you’re sure to fall in love with them quickly. 

Reasons to Choose Poodles

We can ramble on about a poodle’s stellar personality for days, but let’s get into the nitty-gritty and talk about some specific poodle qualities that make them good dogs. 

Poodles Are Easy to Train

Poodles are widely known for two things: their poofy fur and their immense intelligence. That second feature isn’t talked about enough: poodles are extremely smart. In fact, they’re one of the smartest dog breeds in the world. This statistic includes the smaller varieties, too. 

are poodles hyper exercising black poodle
Are Poodles hyper? They sure love to run and exercise!

Because of this breed’s intelligence, it’s incredibly easy to train. That’s why they make such great competition dogs. 

Poodles respond well to positive reinforcement training. They love to be around people, and they thrive when working with fun and energetic training routines. 

Poodles are also super athletic, so your training options with them are almost endless. They excel in water activities as fantastic swimmers, and they’re also adept retrievers. The more you train your poodle, the happier it will be. 

The biggest tip on training a poodle is to remain consistent. They want to please you but can become confused if you switch up commands or get frustrated with them. 

Poodles Are Good with Kids

Poodles make excellent family dogs because of their ability to bond with children. This trait tends to go hand-in-hand with the breed’s general temperament. Because poodles are generally friendly, loving, affectionate dogs, they pair nicely with young children. 

poodle running outside
A Toy Apricot Poodle running happily outside

Poodles are incredibly patient, well-behaved, and tolerant, so there’s no need to worry if you have babies or toddlers who may not fully understand boundaries yet.

But every dog’s personality is different, and training will play a key role here. Never leave a young child unsupervised around any dog. Even the most patient dogs have their limits. 

Poodles Are Versatile

According to the Poodle Club of America, there are three official types of poodles:

  • Standard Poodle
  • Miniature Poodle
  • Toy Poodle
Toy Poodle looks smart
A Toy Poodle looks smart waiting for a new command. (Image: Instagram/@zukotoypoodle)

Why is this a good thing? Well, it gives families options. These varieties tend to hold many of the same traits, including intelligence, friendliness, and patience. 

While these are all traits anyone would enjoy in a pet, not everyone wants a large dog. The standard poodle can weigh as much as 70 pounds and may be too much for some families. 

The other varieties give people the option to own a poodle that’s smaller and perhaps more manageable for their home or lifestyle. 

Poodles Are Hypoallergenic 

There’s no dog breed out there that is truly hypoallergenic, but there are dogs that are very, very close. One common misconception about dog allergies is that the reaction comes from their hair. 

Poodle ready for walk
The Poodle puppy is ready for his daily walk. (Image: Instagram/@skai_theminipoodle)

That’s not entirely true.

The allergens from a dog come from dander, which is on a dog’s skin. This dander gets spread more easily with high-shedding, thick-coated dog breeds. 

Hypoallergenic dogs like poodles are low-shedding, meaning they don’t lose a lot of hair. Therefore, they don’t scatter dander around as other dogs do. They’re also low-dander dogs, which makes them a good choice for anyone who has allergic reactions to dogs.

Plus, you won’t find a ton of their fur on your clothes and furniture or in your mouth! 

Saliva also plays a role in dog allergies. Poodles are not known for drooling like other breeds, which also contributes to their hypoallergenic nature. The breed loves people and gets excited to meet and greet family and visitors alike, so they might still lick, but this is a behavior you can work on in training sessions. 

Bad Things About Poodles

There are so many things that make poodles good dogs, it can be hard to imagine anything bad about them! But there are a few downsides to the breed that are important to consider before adopting a pup. 

Emotional Sensitivity

The emotional range of the poodle breed is quite impressive. As much as they can be friendly and loving, they can also quickly become stressed, anxious, and upset. If a poodle gets too upset, you may see physical signs such as digestive upset and vomiting. 

naught parti poodle has torn up a pillow
A guilty looking two color Poodle

Poodles are like emotional sponges. If there’s tension, yelling, and emotional distress in your home, your poodle can feel that too. These peaceful and sensitive dogs need a loving environment, or else your possessions might pay for it. 

Potential Health Issues

Due to competition and a high standard for the breed in general, poodles have been subjected to a lot of inbreeding over the years. And because of this, they are susceptible to some serious health issues that owners should be aware of. 

chocolate toy poodle eats food from a bowl
A chocolate Toy Poodle eating from a ceramic bowl

These issues can include: 

  • Eye disease: progressive retinal atrophy, cataracts, corneal ulcers, glaucoma, etc. 
  • Caner: approx. 40% of standard poodles die from cancer 
  • Chronic skin/ear allergies
  • Epilepsy 
  • Addison’s disease
  • Thyroid disease
  • Bloat
  • Blood-clotting diseases
  • Orthopedic diseases

There are some other diseases and health issues to look out for in poodles, but these above are the most common and serious kinds. It’s important to be aware of these before adopting a poodle and understanding what kind of vet bills and treatments you may be committing to. 


Standard poodles are very alert and aware of every sound and movement they notice, which can mean plenty of barking. Don’t get this one confused, though; poodles don’t make very good guard dogs. 

barking Poodle on leash
A Poodle on a leash barking at the dog park. (Image: Instagram/@raffithepoodle)

In short, they’re just too friendly. Poodles love people, so unless you happen to have an unusually mean dog, don’t count on them attacking any intruders. 

But there is a good chance they’ll at least alert you of someone coming into your home. Don’t be surprised if your poodle barks at the mailman, neighbors, other dogs, and sounds they pick up on. If you want to try to curb this habit, you have to work on training right away. 

Final Thoughts

When it comes to poodles, the good far outweighs the bad. Many of their “bad” traits can be present in a wide range of dog breeds. Much of it comes down to how you train them. 

Poodles are great pets that quickly find their place in your family and your heart. Just be prepared for a lot of energy!