The Poodle is commonly acknowledged to be the most wisely intelligent of all members of the canine race. There is a general belief that he is a fop, whose time is mostly occupied in personal embellishment, and that he requires a great deal of individual attention in the matter of his toilet.
It may be true that to keep him in exhibition order and perfect cleanliness, his owner needs to devote more consideration to him than is necessary in the case of many breeds.
Still, in other respects, he gives very little trouble. All who are attached to him are consistent in their opinion that there is no dog so intensely exciting and responsive as a companion.
His qualities of mind and his acute powers of reasoning are indeed so high that there is something almost human in his attractiveness and his devotion.
His aptitude in learning is never denied, and many are the stories told of his marvelous talent and versatility.
Not merely as a showman’s dog has he distinguished himself. He is something more than a mountebank of the booths, trained to walk the tight rope, and stand on his head. He is adept at performing tricks, but it is his alertness of the brain that places him apart from other animals.
The profuse and long coat of this dog has the peculiarity that if not kept regularly brushed out, it twists up into little cords, which increase in length as the new hair grows and clings about it.
The unshed old hair and the new growth entwined together, thus become distinct rope-like cords. Eventually, if these cords are not cut short, or accidentally torn off, they drag along the ground, and so prevent the poor animal from moving with any degree of comfort or freedom.
Corded Poodles are very showy, and from the remarkable appearance of the coat, attract a great deal of public attention when exhibited at shows.
Still, they have lost popularity among most fanciers, and have become few owing to the apparent fact that it is impossible to make pets of them or keep them in the house.
The reason of this is that the coat must, from time to time, be oiled to keep the cords supple and prevent them from snapping, and, of course, as their skins cannot be brushed, the only way of keeping the dog clean is to wash him, which with a corded Poodle is a lengthy and challenging process.
Further, the coat takes hours to dry, and unless the newly washed dog be kept in a warm room, he is very liable to catch a cold. The result is that the coats of corded Poodles are almost invariably dirty, and somewhat smelly.
Poodle’s General appearance
Head: Long, straight, and elegant, the skull not broad, with a slight peak at the back.
Muzzle: Long (but not snippy) and stable not full in cheek; teeth white, healthy, and level; gums black, lips black, and not showing slippiness.
Eyes: Almond-shaped, very dark, full of fire and intelligence.
Nose: Black and sharp.
Ears: The leather long and wide, low set on, hanging close to the face.
Neck: Well proportioned and stiff, to admit of the head being carried high and with dignity.
Feet: Rather small, and of good shape, the toes well arched, pads thick and hard.
Legs: Fore-legs set straight from the shoulder, with plenty of bone and muscle.
Hind-legs: Powerful and well bent, with the hocks, well let down.
Tail: Set on rather high, well carried, never curled or brought over back.
Coat: Very profuse, and of good hard texture; if corded, hanging in tight, even cords; if non-corded, very thick and durable, of even length, the curls close and thick, without knots or ties.