Imagine you have decided to bring home a Poodle that matches your personality and lifestyle. Everything seems great, but you notice that he does not have a curly signature look as you were expecting in your pet.
Don’t worry if you have got a straight-haired poodle. Almost all Poodles are born with straight hair, and their coats gradually develop curls as they grow.
By the end, you will know how poodle pups’ coat transforms into adult coats and also how to manage their straight hair to keep them healthy throughout this period.
What Will I Learn? 👇
Are poodles born with straight hair?
Yes, poodles are born with straight hair, although it would only last during their puppyhood. After that, poodle pups have a puffy, feathery, and significantly straight coat identical to that found in many Doodle/Poodle mixed-breeds, instead of having dense curls or sometimes even cords, that will emerge gradually.
Your puppy’s coat would begin to transform as he grows older, developing curly hair all around the body. At this point, its coat gets a bit more challenging to handle, and that it is the perfect timing for him to get his first thorough haircut instead of simply a puppy cut. If not effectively handled, the soft puppy coat will look messy with the rough and thick coat during adulthood.
You might observe extensive shedding at this stage in your pup’s life. However, when your poodle has reached adulthood, they will shed far less than other dog breeds like the double-coated Labrador Retriever.
It is because Poodles’ coats will always keep growing. No doubt, you might find their hair sticking to your clothes, furniture and also in the shower drain after bathing them. But, these issues will be resolved once they get a completely new adult coat.
Poodle pups’ coats lack the volume required to uphold a style. Therefore, poodles are given a professional ‘puppy pants’ haircut for the ring shows. In this particular trim, their snout and legs are shaved closely, and the other parts are carefully trimmed using scissors with any poms that people are aware of.
Why does my poodle have straight hair?
Let’s assume your Poodle has not recently come back from the grooming shop with a straight hair look than usual and is not a pup anymore; then there could be another cause for your Poodle’s straight-hair coat, which I refer to as an ‘improper coat.’
The KRT71 chromosome, a.k.a. the Keratine gene, and a variation of this specific gene called the CU locus, are responsible for a curly coat in Poodles. These genetics block the keratin in their coat from connecting normally, resulting in natural curls.
Since this gene is strong, a canine only requires one variation of the curl chromosome to have a thick and curly coat. Imagine a Doodle; a Labrador does not have the curl chromosome; however, a Poodle has, F1 Doodles inherit one version of the curl chromosome. Therefore, every Poodle SHOULD have two variations of chromosomes.
When breeders fail to test their breeding canines that carry only a single curl chromosome can sometimes result in Poodles to have a somewhat straight or wavy coat. This is a genetic process which can also be passed on with the poodles having an improper coat.
In this case, their adult coat can resemble the coat of a Poodle puppy, and while there could be waves or curls, their coat would lack the thickness and fine curls that people prefer in their Poodles.
A Poodle having an ‘improper coat’ is quite attractive and may shed less. But, it would lack the classic Poodle factor and can resemble a mix-breed due to its coat’s ‘Doodle’ appeal. Reputable breeders must eliminate the non-curl chromosome from their reproductive procedures. They should focus on ensuring that every Poodle they produce has ‘perfect’ evenly curled hair by DNA examining their canines for a coat pattern and hereditary illnesses.
Can a poodle have straight hair?
A poodle’s hair could be straight as well as curly. It is just a matter of the straight coat chromosome becoming dominant. It’s exceptional to find a poodle above the age of two with a perfect straight coat.
It is also a fact that some coat colors could be more straight than the rest. The apricot shade of coat, for example, is comparatively non-curly due to its soft structure. Their coats have to be quite thick and dense to be able to hold a curl. A thinner strand of hair will stay loose and straight no matter how much you style it.
However, if your poodle’s coat is not curly, there are quite a variety of hairstyles that may work to enhance its straighter strands. Your poodle would also get a distinct appearance that the typical poodle would lack.
Some dog owners worry that their poodle will permanently have a straight coat. You can simply find a professional and skilled groomer and see how he can transform your poodle. Aside from the fact that their canine lacks natural curls, some pet parents are concerned that their dog might lose hair.
Can toy poodles have straight hair?
Toy and Miniature Poodles can have straight or wavy hair until nine months. After that age, they slowly start to see the transformation of straight to curly hair, which could last till 18-24 months of age.
It happens to standard poodles as well, beginning from 9 months of age; however, they typically get their full-grown adult coat when they turn 12 months old.
How to keep poodle hair straight?
You can enjoy the benefits of the wavy and straight hair that many Poodle pups have since it is usually easier to maintain than an adult curly coat. However, the coat will not look after itself, and adequate maintenance is required while raising a Poodle.
But if you do not have grooming skills, your Poodle pup would most likely go to a skilled stylist in 4-8 weeks. The duration between appointments is determined by how effectively you can keep their coat clean at home, how messy they become in their everyday routines, and the length of their coat.
The process of straightening a Poodle’s coat is called ‘fluff drying.’ Groomers adopt the fluff drying technique to obtain an equal trim and provide their coats with the stunning silky texture that pet owners love about their poodles.
It’s a great skill to master at home because their fluff-dried coats are far simpler to brush and keep them tangle-free. A blow dryer, sometimes called by the name of a blaster, is perhaps the most safety equipment you can invest in. If you’re planning to shampoo your canine, make sure you comb him properly beforehand since knots are much simpler to remove from a dry coat.
While working with the blaster on your poodle’s coat, avoid ‘twirling’ the barrel as it can cause ‘matted knots,’ which are terrible tangles that are extremely hard to brush out. Take out extra water (or dust off its coat if it is fully dry) from its coat with the help of the blaster using an upward and downward movement, going from the roots to the ends of their hair till the majority of the water is gone, and its coat is beginning to ‘puff’ up and looking like cotton candy. After your pet’s coat is completely dry, focus on blowing it flat and smooth.
It will require some practice to master this technique, and then it won’t take much time to groom your poodle at home. Concentrate on one portion of their coat at a time. Try to focus the tip of the blower at their hair follicles beneath their coat and move forward at the end.
You could use a pin comb or slicker for this, and you’ll want to brush constantly in the right direction as you’re blowing one strand while maintaining a continuous airflow. When working with sensitive regions, make sure to change the setting to low. Repeat till their coat is completely dry and flat.
To complete the look, use a metal brush to detangle your dog. If your dog’s hair still isn’t straight enough, simply dampen it with some water and follow the same process.
Is it dangerous to straighten a poodle’s hair?
Fluff drying your Poodle’s hair is not harmful if appropriately executed. But, delicate regions like the ears, face, and nose should be handled with caution. You must also be attentive and continuously blow with the strand to prevent tangles.
Using heating tools specifically designed for people, like hair straighteners, are life-threatening for your canine. Therefore, resist the urge to straighten your Poodle’s hair with them. Instead, always use a blaster tool to securely straighten your poodle’s coat.
If your beloved poodle is in its puppyhood stage, there’s a great possibility that he will grow a straight or wavy coat. Mature poodles with straight or wavy coats exist, although they are rare. It means you would not be able to take part with them in any poodle dog competitions, but it doesn’t imply they are not magnificent and lovely.
Washing, drying, and grooming their coat requires some time, but it is well worth it in the end. It is recommended to comb your Poodle regularly and maybe every day if possible throughout this transformation process. You would also want to get your poodle professionally groomed to avoid tangles. Your pup might also shed a lot initially, but it will stop once they enter adulthood with a brand new coat.
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Marko is the founder and author at PoodleHQ, where he blends profound expertise with formal training in Animal Behavior and Canine Genetics. With multiple generations of poodles under his care, he’s a breed connoisseur, honored with the Canine Care Excellence Award and lauded by the International Pet Enthusiasts Association.