Do Poodles have Fur Hair or Wool?Explained

Do Poodles have Fur Hair or Wool?

In general, poodles have very distinct fur. Is it hair, or is it fur or wool? While it may seem like a question frequently asked of poodle owners and vets, it has yet to be answered. 

Although poodles rarely take offence, there’s no need to worry if you get it wrong. 

As this question has recently gained in popularity, I performed some research to learn the correct term for these adorably cute puppies.

When they say poodles have fur, are they talking about actual fur or something else? Poodles do not have fur, they have hair just like human hair. The poodle is among the small number of breeds considered to have hair. Unlike human hair, poodle hair grows only on a single, inner layer and does not shed.

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The Difference Between Fur and Hair

Hair continues to grow, and unless there are hormonal changes or underlying issues, it does not fall out in large amounts. 

Fur grows to a certain point and then must be shed. Poodles have a lovely head (and body) covered in silky hair that functions similarly to human hair.

You may initially wonder, “What’s the difference?” I have yet to brush it. It’s all the same, isn’t it?” To some extent. 

There are numerous distinctions and minor distinctions between the two, but at their core, hair and fur are identical.

Ross McPhee, of New York City’s American Museum of Natural History, was questioned in this article about the distinctions between hair and fur. 

When pressed on whether there was a material distinction between the two, he stated that there was none. His response to this question is as follows:

Fur Vs. Hair

When we compare the hair on poodles to the fur on other dog breeds through this scientific lens, we see that while fur and hair are similar, they each have unique characteristics that vary between individuals and dogs.

 

Fur and hair are both composed of keratin, a protein compound. Both are genetically identical. 

The distinctions between the two are more about how they look and feel, as well as how they are cared for.

 

Differences in Texture Poodle Hair vs. Fur

Fur and hair have distinct textures. Poodles, for example, have a single layer of hair, whereas the majority of dogs with fur have a double layer of fur.

Texture of Poodle Hair
Hair is typically smoother and can grow longer than eyebrows. While fur must shed at certain lengths, hair can continue to grow indefinitely if allowed.

Hair can be straight, curly, or wavy and can easily become tangled if you are not vigilant about their grooming needs.

The texture of Dog Fur

Dogs with fur have a top coat and an undercoat, which contributes to their furry, dense appearance. 

Fur is almost always denser and shorter in length than hair. This is because their skin requires more follicles for proper fur growth.

The undercoat of fur is typically a fine, soft coat that assists dogs in regulating their body temperature throughout the year. They do not always have this double coat, but it is a very common characteristic of the majority of dogs with fur.

When it comes to grooming, both fur and hair present unique challenges and benefits. We’ll discuss grooming requirements in greater detail later in this article.

There are Slight Differences in the Growth Cycles of Fur and Poodle Hair The way fur and hair growth is a significant difference. 

Their growth cycles shed light on why they each have such distinct looks and feels, as well as distinct maintenance and care styles.

While Poodle hair is longer in length, the growth cycle is shorter, resulting in little to no shedding.

Hair and fur both require the same growth cycles, but they progress at different rates.

Hair/fur growth cycle in its natural state
A typical hair growth cycle is as follows:

1. Anagen

The follicle becomes active in this phase.

2. Catagen

The sheath of the root begins to bond with the hair and growth comes to a pause.

3. Telogen

Hair neither grows nor dies off during this dormant phase.

4. Exogen

Hair is shed from the follicle during this phase, and the entire cycle starts over again. When your dog sheds more heavily during the hot summer months, this phase is a much faster process so that they can shed that winter coat.

The anagen phase is the primary factor that distinguishes hair from fur.

Hair requires additional time during the anagen phase, which slows the entire process. However, dogs with fur require a faster passage through this process in order to shed adequately and maintain a healthy coat.

If you’re interested in seeing images and learning more about the various poodle hair types, read this article.

According to the American Kennel Club, a poodle may experience hair loss during pregnancy due to hormonal changes in her body. Her hair may become thinning during and after pregnancy.

Hair, Fur, and Allergies in Poodles

The debate over dog hair and fur inevitably leads to the subject of allergens. Many people believe that dog hair causes fewer allergies; however, this is not the case.

Hair/fur is not always the source of allergens. There are a few additional things that can elicit an emotional response in their owners and families. These may include the following:

Saliva from the skin contains a variety of chemical compounds.

Dander: Pollen or dust in the dog’s coat
Urine from your dog
Allergies to Poodle Hair vs. Dog Fur.

Due to the fact that poodles have hair, they are generally considered to be a better breed for people who suffer from allergies. However, this is not always due to the distinction between fur and hair. There are several ways to approach this.

While the curly coat of hair of a poodle can easily trap dander beneath it, a poodle does not shed its hair. Dander buildup beneath that layer of hair can wreak havoc on anyone who suffers from dander-related allergies.

As a result, they must be groomed frequently to allow dander to escape and prevent build-ups.

On the other hand, dog fur sheds frequently and retains dander as it spreads throughout the house. 

Thus, if your pup sheds excessively and you notice an increase in your allergies, it is usually not due to the excess fur in the house. Sneezes and watery eyes are triggered by the dander and protein compounds on their skin.

Poodle Hair Is Less Dangerous To Spread Than Dog Fur

The majority of dogs with fur shed dander approximately every 3-4 days through their fur. 

This creates a significant problem for anyone who suffers from allergies, as allergens are almost constantly spread through the air.

Poodles shed their dander and extra skin particles approximately every 21 days.

Due to their low shedding, poodles are frequently recommended for allergy sufferers. 

However, keep in mind that if your poodle has curly hair, you’ll want to do everything possible to keep their dander under control and their hair and skin healthy.

Consult your groomer about the best shampoos and grooming techniques for reducing dander and allergies. We’ll also cover a few of those tips in the following section.

Poodle Hair Grooming Tips

Preventative care will play a significant role in poodle hair care. Their curly hair can quickly become unmanageable if you do not keep up with their grooming needs.

Check out this article I recently wrote about 25 poodle haircuts. It contains images of the most popular and unique poodle haircut styles available.

Taking care of your Poodle

You’ll want to brush their hair daily to prevent matting. Using proper brushing techniques is just as critical for your poodle. If you do not maintain their hair properly, it can easily mat, necessitating shaving them in that area to correct the situation.

Brushing Techniques for Poodles
The following tips will help you keep your poodle’s fur and skin happy and healthy:

Brush in massaging strokes that extend all the way down to the skin. 

This action will result in an increase in circulation. Additionally, it aids in the removal of dander and any other unnecessary skin particles. 

Getting down to the skin is critical for poodles, as their hair is prone to becoming matted and tangled, which begins at the root.

Slicker brushes are a popular choice for poodles because they are effective at getting to the root and preventing matting. They are closely spaced and feature shorter, thinner wires that assist in penetrating curly hair.

Always inspect your poodle for burrs, ticks, or anything else that may have been picked up outdoors.

Establish a daily routine for brushing your poodle so that they become accustomed to it and begin to welcome it. 

Poodles are naturally independent pups, so let them know you’re available to assist them with this routine.

Additionally, it will help strengthen your bond with them while keeping them healthy.

Due to the fact that their hair is a different texture and thickness than fur, the proper brush will be critical. The slicker brush became popular with poodles due to its compatibility with their hair type.

However, some other tools and brushes, such as rubbery combs, assist in keeping a coat smooth and shiny. 

Additionally, those combs can assist in removing dead hair. If you own a poodle puppy, read this article to learn how to groom your poodle at home and what tools you will need.

If you’re unsure which brush to use on your poodle, consult your veterinarian or groomer; they’ll be able to assist you.

Fun Fact: When poodles’ ankles, hips, or other joints are trimmed with those fluffy puffs, it is to help protect them. 

While many believe this appearance is solely for aesthetic purposes, it serves a functional purpose of safety and efficiency. They are better swimmers because they have less fur. 

However, if the water is too cold, it can irritate their joints. This provides protection for their joints in cold weather and while they are submerged in water, without weighing them down with their fur.

Bathing a Poodle Promotes the Health of the Skin and Hair

Every four to six weeks, poodles should be bathed. If your poodle enjoys the outdoors and a good swim in the lake or a frolic in the leaves and mud, this should be done more frequently. 

However, for the majority of poodles, 4-6 weeks is the optimal time period.

You want to avoid overdoing it, as this will irritate their skin and may even harm follicle development. 

Dogs possess natural cleansing abilities that enable them to maintain their hygiene even in the absence of human assistance. However, they require that bath to assist in the removal of dirt, grime, and dead hair or skin.

You can bathe poodles at home if you have the proper shampoo and conditioner and enough space in the tub for them to be safely contained. 

While this may seem like a tall order for some poodles, others will enjoy the experience due to its relaxing and soothing effect on their skin. Additionally, it is an excellent opportunity for bonding.

Again, you may wish to consult your veterinarian or groomer for specific recommendations tailored to your poodle’s hair and skin requirements. 

However, if you intend to groom yourself at home, here are some excellent features to look for in your shampoo and conditioner selection.

There are no additional sulphates, parabens, phosphates, or phthalates that could be harmful to their skin or overall health.

Due to the fact that Poodles have water-resistant coats, the product must be strong and effective enough to penetrate.

Avoid shampoos that contain soaping agents. While we enjoy a good lather when washing our hair, too much shampoo can dry out and irritate the skin of a poodle.

They should maintain a pH balance of 6.5 to 7.5.
If your poodle has any skin problems, it is critical to consult your veterinarian before initiating any at-home bathing.

Do Poodles and Puppies Have Distinct Hairstyles?

The coats of the majority of dogs change slightly as they grow from puppies to adults. Between 9-16 months of age, poodles typically transition from a puppy coat to an adult coat. 

This varies according to the type of poodle and the dog itself. Not all dogs, even those of the same breed, will follow the same schedule.

Mating will always be an issue with poodles because they have hair rather than fur. Whether they are puppies or adults, you will want to groom and care for them on a daily basis.

Maintaining a poodle’s hair short from an early age can be extremely beneficial for maintaining healthy hair and avoiding knots. 

However, it can also be an excellent way to help prevent dander build-up, which can be a problem for poodles.

Poodles have a wide variety of hairstyles. Oftentimes, if the poodle competes in shows organised by organisations such as the American Kennel Club or Westminster, they will have specific hairstyle requirements.

Poodles must have one of the following hairstyles to compete as show dogs: English Saddle, Continental Clip, or Modified Continental Clip. And poodle puppies are required to wear the official Puppy Clip, which maintains an even length across their bodies.

List of  the best and trusted Dog shampoo , Conditioners and dry shampoo that can be purchased from Amazon. I use most of these products for my Pooch.

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Dog Dry Shampoo & Body wash

 

Wrapping Up:

Poodle Fur and Hair Debate

Poodles are not the only passengers on this boat. Numerous other dog breeds lack fur and instead have hair. 

Their coats will differ from those of poodles, but the single layer of hair rather than double coats of fur will remain consistent.

Every single dog, as much as we would like to say, has fur as a knee shaking reaction. 

Their curly locks need to be carefully maintained and groomed every day. 

The single hair layer will help people with allergies instead of a double layer of fur, when the hair is properly maintained and maintained.

For those with allergy to pet dander, the limited dander and danders releasing into the air are very useful. 

But remember, hair and fur come out of the same thing at the end of the day. The look, feel and care needs may vary, but they are cut from the same cloth scientifically speaking.

Here are some of the other popular breeds that have hair, rather than fur:

  • Portuguese water dog
  • Irish water spaniel
  • Bearded Collie  
  • Giant schnauzer
  • Xoloitzcuintli (commonly referred to as the Xolo) and Peruvian Inca orchid are mostly hairless, but what they do grow is hair, not fur
  • Bedlington terrier
  • Kerry blue terrier
  • Wirehaired fox terrier
  • Standard schnauzer
  • Tibetan terrier
  • Polish lowland sheepdog 
  • Bichon fries
  • Maltese
  • Yorkshire terrier
  • Miniature schnauzer
  • Shih-
  • Tzu
  • Havanese 
  • Bolognese 
  • Brussels griffon

References

  • AVMA– Vet 
  • The Everything Poodle Book (2004) by J.Adams
  • Poodle Clipping and Grooming: The International Reference (2001) by S. Kalstone

For more about Poodles see our other articles below

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