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If you are thinking of adding a lovable Poodle to your home, you may have some questions. One of the most commonly asked questions about this particular breed is, “How long do Poodles live?”
After all, knowing how long your dog will live is important because you need to plan for your lives together.
Poodles actually come in three different varieties: Toy, Miniature, and Standard. The Toy variety is the smallest of the three, and the Standard is the largest.
The original Poodle breed was bred in Germany 400 years ago as the duck hunter’s best friend and working dog.
Most dog lovers know the larger the dog breed is, the shorter their average lifespan will be because large dogs age faster than small dogs.
This means the Standard variation of the Poodle will have the shortest lifespan of the three Poodle varieties, while the Toy Poodle lives the longest.
Keep reading to find out how long each variety lives for, what their different life stages look like, what factors impact their health negatively, and what things you can do to impact their lifespans positively!
How Long Do Toy, Miniature, And Standard Poodles Live?
As I briefly touched on above, there are three variations of the Poodle recognized by the American Kennel Club. Each breed has its own quirks and drawbacks that make them suited to different households and human parents.
The biggest physical difference in the three types of Poodles is their size. Unfortunately, the size of the Poodle directly impacts how long their average lifespan will be.
Let’s take a closer look at each Poodle variation.
Toy Poodle Lifespan
The Toy Poodle is the smallest of the three Poodles. They are tiny balls of fluff who have as much personality and energy as their Standard counterparts!
Toy Poodles stand at a maximum of 10 inches at their shoulder and weigh around four to six pounds in total!
Notably, their curly coats are considered mostly hypoallergenic, which makes them the favorite of many people looking for a very active, purse-sized ball of joy.
Toy Poodles benefit from the fact that they are so small. They have an average lifespan of 16 to 18 years and often reach 20 years of age with good care!
Miniature Poodle Lifespan
The Miniature Poodle is the medium-sized variation of the Poodle. The average Miniature Poodle stands at 10 to 15 inches in height at their shoulders and weighs about 10 to 15 pounds.
Miniature Poodles share their large and small counterparts’ love of water, exercise, and cuddles! They are slightly larger than the Toy Poodle, so as a result, they have a slightly lower average lifespan.
Miniature Poodles live for 12 to 14 years on average. However, with excellent care, many Miniature Poodles can live for 18 years!
Standard Poodle Lifespan
The Standard Poodle is the variety everyone is most familiar with. They are the original template for the Poodle dog breed.
Standard Poodles stand at least 15 inches tall at the shoulder. Females weigh between 40 and 60 pounds, and males weigh between 50 and 70 pounds on average.
Owing to their large size, Standard Poodles have the shortest average lifespan of all three varieties.
Large dogs age faster than smaller breeds, so the Standard Poodle’s average lifespan is 12 to 14 years (or less if the dog suffers from genetic conditions or poor care).
The Stages Of Your Poodle’s Life
Your Poodle will go through a number of stages in their life where they require different nutrition in their diet, different levels of exercise, various levels of training, and various levels of vet attention.
The main three stages they will experience as they age are the puppy, adolescent, and adult to senior stages.
Your Poodle is considered a puppy from the time they are born to the time they are about 24 months old. Puppies require plenty of nutrition, TLC from their fur and human moms, and frequent vet visits for their vaccinations and health check-ups.
Your Poodle will be a teenager from roughly 24 months to 36 months old. Their teenage years are short but full of rebellion and unexpected fun!
During this time, your Poodle will be settling into their new, growing body and becoming more confident in their surroundings.
Adult To Senior
Your Poodle’s adult life will start after 36 months and extend for a number of years. This time will change depending on which variety of Poodle you have.
- Standard Poodles will be adults from 36 months to about nine years old. From nine years old to the end of their life, your Poodle will be a senior citizen.
- Miniature Poodles will be adults from 36 months to roughly 10 to 11 years old. They become seniors at around 11 to 12 years old.
- Toy Poodles will be adults from 36 months to around 12 years old, after which they are senior dogs.
The timeline is rough and based on averages, as dogs will age at different rates depending on their lifestyle, nutrition, and their health as puppies.
Factors That Affect Your Poodle’s Health Negatively
There are many different factors that can impact the total life expectancy of your Poodle. However, the main ones are their genetics, common diseases, and the quality of their breeding.
In general, Poodles are a hardy breed. However, they are prone to certain genetic issues that can be passed down to them from their parents. These include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Luxating patellas
- Elbow dysplasia
Standard Poodles tend to suffer more from large breed dog issues like hip and elbow problems. Meanwhile, Toy and Miniature Poodles will often suffer from patella and Perthes issues, as these typically affect smaller dog breeds.
Additionally, crossbreeding a Poodle with another dog breed, such as a Golden Retriever or Corgi, will result in a hybrid dog, like the Goldendoodle or the Corgipoo.
In turn, the hybrid dog will have more diverse genes and be generally hardier and more long-lived than the Poodle.
Genetic issues themselves do not shorten a Poodle’s lifespan. However, the constant pain, wear and tear, and surgeries required to fix any issues will all impact your Poodle’s overall health and longevity.
Poodles can be more susceptible to cancer than other dog breeds. Almost 40% of all Standard Poodles will suffer from some form of cancer over their lifetime.
The most common cancer found in Standard Poodles is squamous cell carcinoma of the digit (SCDD).
SCDD affects the bones in the toes and can occur quite frequently in some Poodles. The cancer itself as well as the cancer treatment can impact a Poodle’s overall lifespan negatively.
3. Heart Disease
Poodles are also susceptible to heart disease. In particular, Toy Poodles are especially susceptible to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), which is an enlargement and weakening of the heart.
Heart disease can cause a rapid decline in young and old Poodles and can be monitored and treated if it is caught in its early stages.
4. Poor Breeding
Puppy mills and backyard breeders do not worry about maintaining healthy breeding pairs; they care about pumping out Poodles and bringing in money as quickly as possible.
Generally, these poor quality breeders do not do extensive genetic testing to ferret out genetic issues like experienced knowledgeable breeders do.
They often backbreed a number of generations together, which concentrates favorable (and not so favorable) traits in a single dog.
When a Poodle comes from a backyard breeder or puppy mill, it will not enjoy the same expected life span as a Poodle that comes from a reputable breeder who has proof of genetic testing and heritage.
Factors That Affect Your Poodle’s Health Positively
In addition to factors that can negatively impact your Poodle’s health and lifespan, there are lots of things that can positively affect your Poodle’s life.
The most important of these factors are exercise, a healthy diet, regular veterinary check-ups and prompt treatment of health issues, and regular grooming.
1. Lots Of Physical And Mental Exercise!
When most pet owners think of exercise, they think of taking their dog for a run or perhaps playing with them outside. However, both physical and mental exercise are important to your Poodle’s overall health.
Poodles were originally bred as retrieving dogs that worked with their human duck hunters.
They would race down the prey items that their human shot down, whether it was in the water or on land, and gently bring it back to their owner without damaging the prey.
Their bodies, whether they are the Toy, Miniature, or Standard variety, are built for activity.
Poodles have large muscles attached to a sturdy, square frame, which is ideal for running long distances, jumping high into the air to grab birds, and paddling along in water.
Therefore, to maintain your Poodle’s perfect physique, you need to ensure they get plenty of physical exercise.
If your Poodle is allowed to deteriorate due to inactivity, they may suffer from behavioral issues, arthritis, bone density issues, and even a weakened heart.
Maintaining a healthy exercise routine will help your Poodle keep physically fit and maintain their heart health, which will positively impact their lifespan.
Your Poodle should have at least an hour of exercise a day broken up into two to four ‘play times’ or walks.
A regular exercise routine will also help maintain muscle mass and avoid obesity, which is a large contributor to a shortened lifespan in dogs.
Poodles are incredibly smart. In fact, they are one of the smartest dog breeds in the world!
They can solve basic problems, communicate their issues to their owners and other dogs fairly well, remember a vast array of commands, and complete complex tasks.
When a Poodle is mentally stimulated through puzzles, games, and detailed tasks, they are exercising! You can exhaust your Poodle simply by giving them a puzzle to do–to the point where they need a nap!
Mental stimulation and enrichment activities are incredibly important things to do in your Poodle’s routine, as they positively impact their engagement and relationship with the world around them.
A happy and engaged dog is more likely to live out their full lifespan potential versus a dog that is bored and uninterested in the world around them.
2. Healthy Diet
Maintaining a healthy, balanced diet with supplements to support joints, heart health, and prevent obesity will go a long way to keeping your Poodle on track to live out its full life expectancy.
Feeding your Poodle fresh dog food like The Farmer’s Dog while expensive can be a good alternative to the standard kibble diet.
Because of the high expense we will often use fresh dog food as a topper to supplement our regular dog food.
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3. Yearly Vet Visits
As Poodles are susceptible to cancer and heart disease, it is essential they go for yearly vet visits to monitor their health.
If a problem is caught early on, it can be treated and managed effectively and may not impact your Poodle’s lifespan!
4. Regular Grooming
Poodles have complicated coats that require a lot of attention and consistent grooming from the time they are puppies.
If your Poodle is not groomed regularly, their hair will cord and mat from not being properly maintained.
Regular grooming includes brushing teeth, cleaning ears, and checking their eyes for any issues, infections, or gum disease.
In short, keeping your Poodle clean and well-maintained will help them live a long, healthy life.
FAQs About How Long Poodles Live
Who was the oldest Poodle to ever live?
The oldest Poodle to live was a lovely Poodle named Lady.
She was born in 1908 and passed away in 1937, which made her a whopping 28 years old!
What dog breed lives the longest?
The Jack Russell Terrier is the dog breed with the longest average lifespan.
Jack Russell Terriers are hardy dogs, love a lot of exercise, don’t suffer from a lot of genetic conditions, and enjoy a diverse gene pool.
These factors all add up to the Jack Russell Terrier being a dog breed that lives for 18 to 20 years on average!
What dog breed lives the shortest?
Giant dog breeds, such as the Bernese Mountain Dogs, Irish Wolfhounds, and Great Danes have short lifespans because of their size.
Unfortunately, many giant breeds only live for 8 years!
Dogs who have flat faces, or brachycephalic faces, also suffer shorter lifespans even though they are usually small dog breeds.
Dogs such as Pekingese, Pugs, and French Bulldogs all suffer shortened life spans because of problems with their breathing and sinus infections.
Rolling Over On Your Poodle’s Lifespan
Different variations of Poodles have different lifespans.
The larger variation, the Standard Poodle, has the shortest average lifespan, while the smallest variation, the Toy Poodle, has the longest average lifespan.
Let’s recap their average lifespans:
- Standard Poodle: 12 to 14 years
- Miniature Poodle: 14 to 16 years
- Toy Poodle: 16 to 18 years
It is important to know how long your dog will live so you can plan accordingly for your lives together. A well-planned Poodle partnership leads to a happy life together!
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Check out more of our favorites on our New Puppy Checklist.