Knowing which breeds will get along well with your poodle isn’t always so obvious, yet can be very helpful to know. Whether you want to know before your next visit to the dog park, or before getting a second dog, this article will list the most compatible breeds for standard, miniature, and toy poodles.
Do Poodles Get Along With Other Dogs?
In general, poodles get along well with many other dogs, but they bond particularly well with those that have similar traits as they do. Dogs that are extremely different from them may not work out well.
Similarities vs differences: Important traits to consider
● Playfulness and energy:
If your poodle is particularly playful and has buckets of energy, this may not bode well for one of the lazier “couch potato” breeds who simply want to relax. A complete mismatch in this area could lead to a lot of frustration, confrontation, and even fighting.
● Activity and exercise requirements:
Having matching exercise requirements will make your job a lot easier, and most importantly, won’t take away from any of your two dogs. For example, if you have a standard poodle who needs 90 minutes of exercise per day, but is paired up with a dog who can only endure 30-45 minutes, you may be inclined to stop your walks early… in this situation, your poodle’s activity levels will be brought down by the second dog.
● Trainability and intelligence:
Poodles are considered one of the world’s most intelligent breeds. They love to follow commands and appease us, which makes our life a lot easier than we realize! It’s important to remember that not all dogs are like this, and some are downright stubborn and mischievous. It could work one of two ways: your poodle brings their level up, or the mischievous one brings your poodle down… If you don’t want to take any risks in this department, then getting another naturally intelligent breed is important.
● General temperament:
Consider your poodle’s personality and behavior and think about which breeds will naturally work well for this. Only you know how your poodle is, which why it’s necessary to give good consideration to this. From her playfulness, her obedience, exercise requirements, and how much attention she demands… Everything is worth considering.
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10 Ideal Companion Breeds For Poodles
Let’s cover the top 10 breeds that poodles across the board get along with. As standard poodles are considerably bigger than miniature and toy poodles, I’ll actually provide additional breeds below that will best suit miniature and toy poodles.
Breeds Suitable For Standard Poodles:
The breeds on this list are not reserved just for standard poodles. But due to the natural size difference, it allows standard poodles to get along better with a wider range of physically larger breeds.
Labradors are always a safe bet and can practically get along with every breed out there. Labs are playful yet gentle and when they choose to be, very intelligent. Labs are of similar physical size and have virtually the same activity levels and exercise requirements. These two breeds really work well.
Their mix of traits and temperament is another reason why the “labradoodle” has become extremely popular.
2. Border Collie
Poodles are smart, but Border Collies are smarter. Officially the world’s no.1 most intelligent dog breed, the Border Collie will no doubt only add to your Poodles overall obedience and skill level, rather than take away from it.
Border Collies are similar in physical size, love to play, are extremely energetic, and have a defined working background just like poodles do. As long as sufficient mental stimulation and exercise are given to your Collie, this pair will work very well.
3. Golden Retriever
What list would this be if it didn’t contain a golden retriever? Extremely similar to labradors, just a lot hairier! If you don’t mind additional brushing and grooming duties, a golden retriever will add a boost of positivity to any household.
Extremely friendly by nature, gentle, affectionate, and playful, golden retrievers have always gotten along well with poodles of all varieties. Standard poodles and golden retrievers have similar activity levels and will complement each other well in practically all areas.
4. Australian Shepherds
Aussies are gaining popularity quickly due to their friendly and affectionate nature. Australian shepherds are very similar to border collies with their character and personality, although some will consider them friendlier and more playful.
Aussies are a little smaller than standard poodles but both of them will match each other’s playfulness, energy, and exercise requirements closely. As long as this breed receives adequate training, mental stimulation, and companionship, they will make an excellent addition to your family and your poodle.
5. Schnauzer or Miniature Schnauzer
Regardless of which Schnauzer you consider, they are both an excellent choice for poodles. This breed can potentially be a little feisty at times, but with proper socialization early on, this is practically never an issue.
Schnauzers are courageous, alert, active, playful, and very much love to be in the action. It turns out that Schnauzers were frequently mentioned after asking owners which breeds their poodles gravitated towards at the local dog parks. So it’s certainly a winning combination for many owners already.
6. English Cocker Spaniel
Cocker spaniels are friendly bundles of energy that love to play and run around. Spaniels are closer in size to the miniature poodle, rather than the standard poodle.
Spaniels are very intelligent and when socialized are very friendly towards people and other dogs. As long as you don’t mind the extra grooming and shedding, this is a safe option to go for. I haven’t found a single report of a cocker spaniel not getting on well with a poodle or any other breed for that matter.
7. German Shepherd
German shepherds and poodles frequently battle each other for the No.2 spot on the “most intelligent” list. It’s no secret that German shepherds are an extremely smart breed, and will therefore complement your poodle’s overall obedience.
German shepherds are very similar in size to standard poodles and have matching activity levels and exercise requirements. GSD’s due to their strong working background do need (and expect) a lot of high-level training, so this is something to consider first.
Everything else aside, GSDs are also very playful, kind, affectionate, and friendly when socialized properly.
Vizslas are another excellent choice for standard poodles. These two breeds are similar in size, are highly playful, both love their attention, and are willing to appease their owners.
Vizslas will likely need more exercise than a standard poodle, but not by much. Although this breed is short-haired and single-coated they still do shed just a little, so don’t expect your floors to remain hairless!
Vizslas, without a lot of training, can have a streak of stubbornness and disobedience in them, so this is something to consider. But assuming you spend adequate time training your vizsla mixed with the positive influence of your poodle, this shouldn’t be a big problem.
Another keen working dog for the list. Pointers are energetic, eager to please, playful, and are similar in size to standard poodles. These two will make perfect exercise partners and will keep each other entertained throughout the day.
Pointers will need sufficient training and socialization early on but are all-around a great dog for an active family. A pointer may become a little “too much” for a toy poodle, but for a standard poodle, their energy and physicality will be nicely matched.
Brittanys are sometimes referred to as Brittany spaniels, although their natural character and work ethic resemble more of a pointer/setter than a spaniel. Regardless of that, Brittanys are a very friendly, kind, happy, and all-around smart breed.
They will have no problem making an excellent family dog, as well as an excellent companion dog for your poodle. Brittanys are a little smaller than standard poodles but will likely need a little more exercise than the average poodle will. This breed has a strong work ethic and extensive training will be necessary.
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5 Additional Breeds For Miniature and Toy Poodles
Please note, the breeds listed above will work just fine with a miniature or toy poodle due to the natural friendliness of all of them!
This is simply an additional list of slightly smaller breeds. Toy poodles, despite being perfectly capable of getting on well with a large breed, will sometimes be better suited to a breed of their own size or at least smaller than some of those listed above.
Beagles are one of the most popular dogs breeds in the USA just like poodles are. They are small and known for their kind, friendly and affectionate nature.
Beagles make excellent companion dogs for both children and other small breeds. If you have a miniature or toy poodle, a beagle will always be an excellent option.
It’s worth pointing out, however, beagles can have a streak of disobedience in them, which will be a drastic contrast from what you are used to with your poodle. This can be resolved with a lot of training and mental stimulation, but it’s worth keeping in mind.
2. King Charles Cavalier
These little fluff balls of energy are forever gaining popularity across the world. King Charles Cavaliers are part of the toy group, so, therefore, are adequately sized for your toy or miniature poodle. They can be described as very friendly, playful, bouncy, and have a natural happy-go-lucky spirit.
If you don’t mind extra grooming commitments, as there will be shedding to deal with, this is an awesome option for both your family and your poodle.
Pugs make the perfect match for toy poodles as they are very similar in height and natural temperament.
Pugs are known for being incredibly friendly, affectionate, kind, and playful. Toy poodles and pugs have similar exercise requirements and will certainly keep each other entertained throughout the day.
Pugs are prone to more health complications compared to poodles, so this might be something you want to consider first. Although this doesn’t take away from their ability to live happy fulfilled lives.
Bulldogs may not be able to keep up with your toy or miniature poodle, but the exercise will certainly do them good. Bulldogs are naturally friendly, calm and make excellent companions in general.
Bulldogs with their social temperament love to play with other dogs and this bodes well for most toy poodles.
Again, like with pugs, bulldogs do typically have further health issues than poodles and may not live as long. Although this doesn’t take away from their ability to live great fulfilled lives.
Havanese are actually rated as one of the world’s friendliest dog breeds, so that’s an excellent start! Havanese are similar in size to toy poodles and are just as playful, energetic, and happy.
Havanese are natural lapdogs like toy poodles are will therefore act as excellent companion breeds for both each other and your family.
If you don’t mind the hairiness of the Havanese, they are a safe bet.
Early Socialization Is Everything
The truth is that most breeds that are perfectly capable of developing a good relationship with one another. The key is always socialization.
From years of talking to hundreds (if not thousands) of dog owners, I continue to come across different pairings that I have never seen before.
From Japanese Akitas with Poodles to German Shepherds with Shih Tzus, most relationships can work as long as each dog has been properly socialized from a young age.
Socialization is what makes dogs friendly with other dogs. From a young age, if they are exposed (regardless of their breed) to other new dogs on a frequent basis, they develop many positive interaction skills that make them approachable and friendly.
You may have your eyes set on a breed that wasn’t mentioned above… And that’s completely fine! If your poodle has been sufficiently socialized, she/he will likely get along with the vast majority of other breeds out there.
How To Know Which Breed Your Poodle Will Like
The dog park holds the answer.
One of the best ways to figure out which breed your poodle will get along with before having to make a final decision is to simply visit the dog park more often.
After one or two months of additional dog park visits, you may suddenly see a clear pattern between which breeds your poodle naturally gravitates.
You may realize that your toy poodle actually prefers to socialize and play with larger dogs than smaller dogs. Or you may see that your standard poodle always gravitates towards the labradors over any other breed…
Doing this also gives you a chance to observe many other breeds and their natural temperaments too.
You can really find out a lot about your poodle and other breeds by visiting the dog park more often. So I highly recommend trying that!
Are Poodles Better In Pairs?
Of course, time to address the elephant in the room! Will your poodle just be better off with another poodle?
Most probably, yes. But that’s not because your poodle knows she’s dealing with another poodle. Whether or not dogs can even recognize their own breed is something that researchers are still struggling to find out.
But due to how naturally similar they will be in practically ALL ways, it bodes well for a successful relationship.
If you are considering getting a second poodle for your first poodle, It will certainly go down very well!
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