Poodles are loyal, intelligent dogs. It’s a potent combination that makes them well-suited to families of all shapes and sizes. They are also highly exuberant, even clownish dogs, characteristics less well-suited to seniors.
But Poodles remain popular for their tractability and their hypoallergenic fur. Consequently, a variety of Poodle mixes exist, many of which keep the Poodle personality but without the need for perpetual motion.
These are some of the best Poodle mixes for seniors.
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The Maltipoo is a relatively recent addition to the Poodle hybrid scene. They first appeared in the 1990s. They’re small dogs and weigh between 7-14 lbs and average 9-12 inches in length.
Their small stature makes Maltipoos one of the best dogs for seniors. While they share the Poodle’s natural sociability, their diminutive size makes them a good fit for small places like apartments or assisted living.
Like Poodles, Maltipoos require moderate amounts of grooming. However, many seniors find this manageable because of the Maltipoo’s size.
Additionally, the sunniness of the Maltipoo’s disposition and willingness to please ensures they are more amenable to grooming than other dog breeds. It also makes Maltipoos easy to train.
However, Maltipoos aren’t without drawbacks. They are opinionated dogs and can be vocal when they want to be. But many Maltipoo owners find this is correctable through training.
While Maltipoos are low-shedding dogs, they aren’t hypoallergenic the way Poodles are. But they do have a significantly lower dander level than other dogs, so they have the potential to be a good fit for seniors with allergies, depending on the severity.
Cockapoos combine the cleverness of the Poodle with the silky-furred, playful disposition of the Cocker Spaniel.
They aren’t hypoallergenic because their fur is heavily influenced by their Cocker Spaniel inheritance. So, they won’t be compatible with seniors who have dog allergies.
That said, Cockapoos are still one of the best Poodle mixes for seniors.
They are cuddly, affectionate dogs that do well with owners who can lavish hours of attention on them. Their inclination to be lap dogs makes them well-suited to more sedentary lifestyles.
Cockapoos are playful and enjoy a thorough session with their favorite toys. But owners who can’t manage the high exuberance of the inherited Spaniel energy can train Cockapoos to enjoy independent play as much as more interactive sessions.
Importantly, Cockapoos aren’t without potential health issues. Some of these include:
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy
- Hip Dysplasia
- Familial Nephropathy
Averaging 25 lbs, Cavapoos are medium-sized dogs. Despite this, they are another of the best Poodle mixes for seniors because of their adaptability to small spaces and social dispositions.
They are affectionate, attention-seeking dogs who thrive on time spent with their owners. That said, they don’t mind how they get the attention and are as happy to curl up on your lap as they are to run around the park.
Like other Poodle mixes, Cavapoos need moderate amounts of grooming to prevent their coats from accruing matts.
However, they are one of the more challenging Poodle mixes to train. Their sometimes-excitable natures make holding their attention tricky, and training Cavapoos require time, commitment, and patience.
This Havanese-Poodle hybrid goes by several names. In addition to the name Poovanese, they are also known as:
Like other mixes on this list, the Poovanese is an adaptable dog that does well in various environments. They are medium-sized dogs, weighing approximately 45 lbs when fully grown.
The Poovanese might look most like the Havanese, but they inherited the Poodle’s hypoallergenic fur, so they are ideal for seniors with allergies to dog dander.
However, Povaneses are extremely prone to separation anxiety. Their affectionate and attention-seeking natures mean they thrive in households where someone’s always available to dote on them.
They also benefit from two to three hours of exercise or play every day.
Corgipoos are a cross between Corgis and Poodles.
The Corgi’s long-backed genes are dominant, so appearance-wise, the Corgipoo primarily resembles its Corgi parent while displaying the Poodle’s curly coat.
The wooly Poodle coat decreases the shedding you deal with when adopting a Corgipoo. It also needs routine brushing and grooming to keep your Corgipoo looking tidy.
The way to most Corgipoos’ hearts is through their disproportionately large stomachs. Providing them treats is an excellent way to train them quickly. But because they also love any excuse to romp, instilling recall training early in your relationship is the best way to curb some of that canine enthusiasm.
The Shih-Poo is another of the best Poodle mixes for seniors. They’re part Shih Tzu and part Poodle.
There are several reasons they adapt well to life with seniors, but one of the primary reasons they’re so popular with older adults is their low energy levels. Shih Poos are infamously lazy and would much rather lounge at home than embark on long afternoon walks. That makes them the ideal companion for people with limited mobility.
They are also strongly independent dogs. Like many canines teaching them independent play takes time, but they are good at making their own, non-destructive entertainment.
While Shih Poos are unlikely to seek attention from strangers, they form strong attachments to their primary caregivers and enjoy spending time with them. One of the best ways to do this is by brushing their coat regularly.
Additionally, the Shih Poo inherits hypoallergenic traits from both parents, making it a dog even people with considerable allergies can tolerate.
Pomadoodles are one of the smallest Poodle mixes you will come across. At their heaviest, they weigh 15 lbs, but they can be as light as 5 lbs. They are commonly known as Pomapoos.
Because Pomeranians, one-half of this Poodle hybrid, shed heavily, the Pomadoodle isn’t hypoallergenic. These dogs shed fur and dander, though admittedly less than their Pomeranian parents.
However, routine brushing helps keep the shedding in check and gives you an excellent way to bond with your dog.
Their small size makes them excellent apartment companions. But more adventurous seniors also find that the dog’s compact build makes them excellent traveling companions.
Pomadoodles are typically independent dogs, so they thrive in single-person households. They bond fiercely to the person they perceive to be their primary caregiver and seldom look elsewhere for attention. That said, you must socialize a young Pomadoodle well.
Otherwise, their loyalty can manifest as resource guarding or aggression towards strangers.
Goldendoodles have been around since the late 1960s. They’re medium-sized dogs who are so popular that people have attempted to recreate the popular Doodle at a smaller size.
Toy Goldendoodles are the result of breeding the Teacup Poodle with the Golden Retriever. The result is a friendly, biddable dog that aims to please.
However, the Toy Goldendoodle can be extremely high energy as a puppy. They calm as they age and, with time and patience, make wonderful companions for seniors.
They are also at risk for joint problems like:
- Hip Dysplasia
- Luxating Patella
Many of these are manageable, but it helps to talk to your vet about joint supplements if you want to avoid these complications.
Breeding a Schnoodle takes more effort than some of the other Poodle mixes discussed because the breed specifications for their coat are exacting. It has the wooly, curly-haired quality of a Poodle coat and the silky gray feel and coloration of the Schnauzer.
They can be nervous, shy puppies but quickly open up to their perceived family. And although they are one of the best Poodle mixes for seniors, their energy drive is such that they do better in houses than in apartments. However, one way around this is to provide a Schnoodle with regular access to a park or garden to exercise in.
Like many Poodle mixes, they have moderate grooming needs. These are similar to a Schnauzer’s and can usually be managed by a competent groomer. But it’s also an opportunity to bond, especially with a timid Schnoodle puppy.
Finally, because Schnauzers, like Poodles, are hypoallergenic, this is one mix you can guarantee won’t trigger anyone’s allergies.
When it comes to choosing the best Poodle mixes for seniors, there are many options. The best pick for an individual varies depending on lifestyle, home environment, mobility/energy level, and availability.
These are all important considerations. A combination of research and meeting the dogs beforehand will ensure you bring home the right dog for your household. With that done, you can enjoy the sociability of canine companionship for years to come.