Traditional Poodle Haircut Guidelines

The puppy cut keeps the poodle easy to maintain. Images

The poodle has a so-called hypoallergenic coat, making her a popular breed among allergy sufferers. However, the poodle's curly single coat grows rapidly and requires daily brushing and regular trimming every six to eight weeks. Luckily, the basic kennel or puppy clip is a quick haircut that pretty much any poodle owner can accomplish.


The poodle’s curly, kinky coat requires regular brushing to keep mats and tangles at bay. Also, brushing your poodle often provides bonding time and keeps his skin healthy by distributing the natural oils. Start brushing your poodle’s hind leg using the line brushing method. Hold a 3-inch section of hair in your free hand and brush the hair under it using a slicker brush. Continue working in a line until the entire back section is brushed. Work along each side of your poodle and down her chest. Brush her topknot and ears. Finish by running a metal comb through her fur to remove any remaining mats.


Wet your poodle’s coat with warm water. Make sure the water penetrates all the way to the poodle’s skin. Add a small amount of dog shampoo to your pup’s coat. Massage the shampoo until suds form. Avoid scrubbing the coat, since this may cause tangles in the curly hair. Rinse her coat, starting at the base of her skull and working toward her tail. Continue running water on her coat until it runs clear. Squeeze out the excess water and add a cream conditioner to the poodle’s coat. Allow it to set for a couple of minutes and rinse completely.


Dry the coat thoroughly with a blow-dryer on low settings and brush it out with a pin brush whose bristles have no balls on the ends. To trim, start at the base of the skull and hold the hair straight up between your first and middle finger of your free hand. Trim off about a half-inch of hair down the poodle’s back using dog shears. Keep the hair uniform, and trim down the back legs and hocks, following the natural curve of the legs. Scissor the chest and front legs as well, keeping the entire coat the same length. Pick up each foot and trim the hair between the pads and toes. Have a professional groomer clip your poodle’s face, feet and anal area, since they generally use a No 1. blade to shave them. Also, have the groomer trim your pup’s toenails.

Grooming Tips

Add a spay-on conditioner before brushing your poodle to prevent split ends. Place cotton balls in your poodle’s ears to keep water out before bathing. Since poodles are prone to tear stains, use a warm washcloth and a commercial tear-stain removal product to keep the area under her eyes clean. Brush your poodle’s teeth with dog-friendly toothpaste weekly.