As the name suggests, the Toy Poodle is the smallest version of the popular Poodle dog breed. This miniature dog was bred for nothing other than providing companionship. Toy Poodles may be small, but they have great characteristics as the Standard Poodle.
They are friendly, intelligent, trainable, love animals and humans, loyal, and can fit in various lifestyles. Their small size makes them suitable for apartment living, but keep in mind that they are pretty energetic. More about the Toy Poodle deserves to be recognized, like their beautiful, hypoallergenic coat. But before we take a deeper look into it, let’s answer a simple question.
Do Toy Poodles shed? Yes, they do. Luckily, like their full-sized counterparts, Toy Poodles shed minimally to nothing at all. But while this means less vacuuming in your house, maintaining their coat requires a lot of time and effort to keep it healthy and shedding healthily.
There are three types of Poodles: standard, miniature, and toy Poodles. The latter sheds the least, making them ideal for people who don’t like fur flying around their homes. This characteristic also makes them suitable for allergy sufferers. But as Toy Poodle parents will agree, there’s more to this relatively clean canine than meets the eye.
This article will be your guide to this breed’s shedding tendencies. I will also show you how to ensure they are shedding healthily and manage the situation so that allergy sufferers can enjoy their company. Read on to know if the Toy Poodle is your ideal canine companion.
How Much Do Toy Poodles Shed?
These are among the lowest shedding breeds in dogdom due to their coat type. Toy Poodles are single-coated, meaning they have one layer of fur, unlike double-coated breeds with two. Needless to say, single-coated dogs have less fur to lose in the first place.
Additionally, single coats don’t undergo seasonal shedding the way double coats do, meaning you can expect constant minimal shedding throughout the year. Another reason these dogs shed less is their tightly-curled coat that traps the dead fur, dander, and saliva coming from the body.
While it’s true that all Poodle varieties shed minimally, including the Standard Poodle, the Toy Poodle is so tiny in size with a lesser surface area. This means they have little fur to shed, and their shedding may be much less noticeable than the Standard Poodle shedding.
Why Do Toy Poodles Shed?
Shedding is a natural process in dogs that get rid of old, dead hair and regrow new, healthy ones in their place. Dog fur grows in four stages: anagen, where the fur actively grows; catagen, the transitional stage; telogen, where it rests; and exogen, where it releases. Dogs with a fast hair growth cycle will shed more frequently than those that take their time to grow and release. It happens that the Poodle is in the latter group.
Aside from the natural shedding, your Toy Poodle could also be shedding due to an underlying issue. This is especially true if their shedding is high. Keep reading to learn more about causes and solutions for unhealthy shedding.
Shedding Seasons and Frequency
We’ve already seen that these dogs are minimal shedders, but how much and when do Toy Poodles shed? They tend to lose the same amount of hair throughout the year. That being said, dogs will hold on to as much hair as possible during winter to help them stay warm. And come springtime, they shed the excess fur so they can cool down in the hot summer weather.
You might see slightly more shedding with your Toy Poodle during seasonal peaks. But being single-coated, the shedding won’t be nearly as much as a double-coated breed.
Even when Toy Poodles shed, their coats can hold onto the dead fur, so it doesn’t end up on your furniture and carpeting. Therefore, even when there’s a slight increase in shedding due to changing seasons, you don’t have to worry about fur getting everywhere in your house.
Sometimes as a Toy Poodle owner, you may notice your pup shedding more than usual. This can cause concern as excessive shedding in dogs is usually a sign of an underlying problem. Your Poodle may have fur issues due to the following reasons:
- Stress and anxiety: Toy Poodles are highly sociable dogs, and being left alone for prolonged periods can lead to separation anxiety. One sign of stress in dogs is hair loss.
- Allergies: Like humans, dogs can be allergic to certain foods and chemicals or react to certain medications. This causes itching, which in turn leads to fur loss.
- Parasitic infection: Does your pup have fleas, ticks, or mange mites? The itching and scratching that these parasites cause can lead to excessive shedding.
- An underlying disease: Excessive shedding is usually a sign of various ailments in dogs, including bacterial infections, fungal infections, cancer, thyroid disease, Cushing’s disease, etc.
- Hormonal imbalance: Your Poodle may shed excessively after spaying/neutering or giving birth due to hormonal imbalances.
Remember that excessive shedding is just one of the signs of unhealthy shedding. It would help if you also watched out for other signs such as:
- Bald spots
- Severely thinning coat
- Skin irritation (redness, bumps, rashes, and/or scabs)
- Open sores
- Higher than average licking
- Excessive itching or face rubbing
If you think your Top Poodle is shedding unusually, visit the vet as soon as possible to get a diagnosis and a treatment plan.
What Type of Coat Does a Toy Poodle Have?
The only difference between the three types of Poodles is their height and weight. Otherwise, they share the same type of coat. Poodles are single-coated, with just one layer of fur on their body. But the coats of puppies differ from that of adults. Puppy coats start super soft, thin, wispy, and straight, but the fur grows curly and denser around the base as they get older.
As mentioned earlier, Poodle coats are naturally curly and coarse in texture. The loose hairs are held in the curls as the animal sheds instead of falling out. This is one of the reasons for minimal shedding that this breed is known for. This makes frequent grooming necessary to remove the loose fur and prevent matting and tangling.
How to Manage and Reduce Toy Poodles Shedding?
Toy Poodles shed nearly nothing, partly thanks to their curly coats that hold onto the loose, dead hairs rather than having them fall out. But we also saw that this breed could experience unhealthy shedding. So, to keep it shedding healthily and minimal, you should do a couple of things, including grooming and providing a proper diet.
Toy Poodles Grooming
While the Toy Poodle is naturally inclined to have a clean appearance, it doesn’t mean that you can neglect it. This dog requires regular grooming, starting with brushing. This will allow you to capture and remove the loose, dead hairs trapped inside, thus preventing a shedding mess all over your house.
Brushing also prevents tangles and mats, which can become painful to remove and even cause serious skin conditions that encourage excessive shedding. Last but not least, as you brush your Poodle, massage their body to help spread their skin’s natural oils. This will promote healthy fur growth and, in turn, healthy shedding.
Grooming your Toy Poodle can be a daily task, depending on the length and puffiness of their fur. While brushing your dog’s fur, use a good quality brush like a slicker brush. Be sure to brush entirely through the skin, from head to foot, while paying attention to the belly, chest, and legs.
Poodles’ coats can get quite long and dense, making grooming a hassle. That is why some owners choose to trim their Toy Poodle. Common trimming styles for Poodles include the puppy cut, English Saddler, lion cut, continental, Jacket and Pants, and the bell bottom trim, to name a few.
Toy Poodles Diet
A canine’s hair is often a reflection of its diet. Ensure your Toy Poodle is getting the right balance of proteins, vitamins, and minerals in their diet, and you can only find this in high-quality foods. These foods shouldn’t contain sweeteners, artificial colors, and grains. When your Poodle gets good nutrition, its hair follicles become more resilient, preventing unnecessary shedding.
Like humans, dogs can also be allergic to certain foods, triggering skin irritation and excessive shedding. So, watch what your pup eats.
Key factors to keep in mind when selecting the right food and portions for your canine are their size, activity level, age, and overall health. If unsure, consult with your local vet. Remember to provide clean, freshwater, as dehydrated skin can exacerbate fur loss.
Regularly bathing your Toy Poodle is another effective way to manage and reduce shedding. Like brushing, bathing allows you to capture the loose fur in the Poodle’s coat before spreading it around the house. It’s important to use dog shampoo and never human shampoo as it is too harsh on dogs’ sensitive skin.
While your Toy Poodle will benefit greatly from bathing, frequent baths can have the opposite effect. It will strip their skin of the natural oils, leaving it dry and susceptible to shedding. Bathing your Toy Poodle every three weeks or so should be enough.
Sometimes your doggy may not get all the nutrients they need from their current diet. For instance, if your bitch is pregnant, their nutrient needs will be high that their food may not meet. The same may also apply to sick pups. If that’s the case, supplements are a great way to provide essential nutrients to the animal’s diet. You can consult with your vet about the best supplements for your Toy Poodle, starting with omega-3 supplements.
Are Toy Poodles Hypoallergenic?
After learning how much and when do Toy Poodles shed, it’s only logical to know whether or not they are allergy-friendly.
There’s a misconception about what hypoallergenic dogs are. These are dogs that are less likely to cause an allergic reaction. While dog fur can trigger allergies, allergens can also be found in the animal’s dander, saliva, and urine. These elements attach to the fur and are released into the environment during shedding. All dogs can cause allergies, but low shedders are believed to carry fewer allergens, thus making them more suitable for allergy sufferers.
As a low to non-shedding breed, the Toy Poodle is one of the ideal dogs for people with allergies. It sheds fur and dander in a tiny amount and doesn’t drool much.
That being said, if you have severe allergies, you should take precautions to ensure that the dog doesn’t cause your allergies to flare up. I already talked about brushing, bathing, and providing a proper diet to manage and reduce shedding. Other solutions for minimizing allergy attacks are:
- Regularly vacuuming to clean up existing fur and dander
- Keeping the dog out of your bedroom
- Investing in a HEPA air filter to help capture allergens circulating in the air
- Avoid carpeted floors as they hold onto fur, dander, and saliva. Hardwood floors are more suitable and easier to clean
- Ask your doctor for allergy medication to help manage symptoms