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Discussion Starter #1
I have had a lot of free time these past few days and have spent it to trying to get a foundational understanding of poodles. Specifically I've been researching the difference between miniature and standard poodles. I had thought that the only difference in build between the two was size/height but it seems from looking around that there is an actual conformational difference. Maybe I am crazy but do the legs of miniature poodles seem proportionally shorter and the overal build a bit more compact than the standard poodle? Don't get me wrong, minis are adorable, but I am drawn to the long lines of the standards.

I'm sorry if I am asking too many questions! - please let me know if it gets annoying. The only person I know with a poodle is my aunt who bought a mini from a pet store (just awful) and her Bryce is neither socialized nor obediance trained - I won't use her as a resource (except for what NOT to do) and am kinda starting from a blank slate. I hope everyone is having a nice weekend.
 

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Well in the breed standard they say that the toy and mini should be a exactly like the Standard only smaller.

But I have no idea how the little guys are in real life since my only interest are Standard Poodles
 

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My dog is exactly as tall as he is long. The breed standard says that the dog should be a square build. He might not be exact, but within 1/4 inch or so. I think a big problem with minis is, there is cross-breeding with toys by inexperienced breeders. Like last week I saw an ad for mini/toy poodles in the ad. Well, which is it? Minis or toys? They aren't the same, you know? So, if you are interested in a mini, look for a very reputable breeder. I can name a few off the top of my head, and who we are considering for another dog in the future if we ever make it back to the USA mainland.
Clarion and Aery are at the top of my list for a future dog. Good luck in your search! I would say that my mini looks like a standard, just smaller. He is very athletic, personable and sweet. We can't imagine our lives without him. But a good mini does look like a small standard.
 

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Minis and Standards do have different type. This is especially true of the BYB or puppy mill Minis. If you grew a Mini up, there are very, very few who would look like a Standard. It is the highest praise a Mini can receive if someone says, "It looked like a perfect Standard in miniature."
 

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yup, toys minis and standards do have different 'type' and build. You can get a photos of all three and remove all backgrounds that would reference their height, and I know I can generally tell the difference pretty easily still; they all look different still! There ARE the odd ones that looks like a standard in miniature, but as a whole, they don't.
 

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Well just to throw this at you that many of the standards have different builds as well. My own 2 though not well bred I admit Casey has a very thick build Mandy is a very bony slight build
2 standards I have seen from Cantope have the same thing.
The cream girl I know is very thick a new friend we just met is a red girl and is very fine

Mandy and Casey both eat 2 cups of food a day. Mandy is a petite 32 lbs now and just made it over 30 in her second year.
Casey is 53 lbs
They ate the exact same thing until yesterday and Casey eats in his pen so he doesn't eat her food as that dog could eat an entire bag of dog food if left alone with it.

I am going to go measure to see if my guys are square that was interesting
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you guys for all the information. I guess in the end they are all so cute that it doesn't matter! I am still two years or so off from becoming a poodle mommy but think I am leaning towards a standard - it will depend on my living situation. Growing up my mom had at various times rescued: a sheltie (Maggie May), a yorkie (Mildred), two westies, (Frieda FuzzyPaws and Judy Garland), and a giant 90 lb greyhound (Vincent Vandog) so I know love certainly comes in all sizes!
 

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I agree, Standards and Minis IMO have quite a different build and look generally. Remember also though that within the Standard size is lots of differentiation in size, since anything over 15 inches is considered Standard!

The other, perhaps more important, thing to consider is temperament differences. If you are considering a Mini be sure to ask lots of questions about temperament stability, as there are some lines with issues! They can be overly hyper, and too barky. I remember clearly standing at one breeder's house and watching in horror as her minis bounced off the walls. I'm hopeful Darcy's temperament stays as great as it is now.
 

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It is the highest praise a Mini can receive if someone says, "It looked like a perfect Standard in miniature."
Yes this is true I just love clarion poodles just for that reason !
 

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My daughter has two minis - they are littermates - Gabbie is 10 lbs and is exactly the same build as a standard like my Ginger - Cassie is 20 lbs - fat with short legs and has a beautiful poodle face but no poodle lines. Most of the poodles at this breeder looked like Cassie - including their mother - but their father had the standard lines. I think a really good breeder will probably have the minis with the correct lines - but you can't tell too much when they are puppies - thats the hard part - at lest we couldnt tell
 

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I think I'm still confused about the toy/mini/standard distinctions. As I understand it, anything 10" and under is a toy, anything 10"-15" is a miniature and anything over 15" is a standard. That would explain, I think, the person who advertised toy/minis for sale; it suggests some of the pups will be smaller (toy) and some larger (miniature). Doesn't that happen a lot? I'd think it would be especially hard breeding miniatures without producing some toys (under 10") or standards (over 15"), since you only have a five inch variance. I guess what I'm asking is, if a pair of toy poodles produce a 12" puppy, is it considered an oversized toy or is it a miniature?
 

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I think I'm still confused about the toy/mini/standard distinctions. As I understand it, anything 10" and under is a toy, anything 10"-15" is a miniature and anything over 15" is a standard. That would explain, I think, the person who advertised toy/minis for sale; it suggests some of the pups will be smaller (toy) and some larger (miniature). Doesn't that happen a lot? I'd think it would be especially hard breeding miniatures without producing some toys (under 10") or standards (over 15"), since you only have a five inch variance. I guess what I'm asking is, if a pair of toy poodles produce a 12" puppy, is it considered an oversized toy or is it a miniature?

Good breeders try really reallly hard to stay in-size because otherwise their dogs are disqualified from the conformation ring. It does happen quite often though because breeders are always pushing the upper limits of the Toy and Mini size standard.

However.... an oversized Toy who goes 11" often looks pretty different from an oversized Mini who goes 15.5". This is because they have different type. The Toys typically have wedgier heads and less shelf in the rear. They have less bone over all. They tend to move differently (even though they are not supposed to).
 

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So if the offspring of two Miniatures only stands 9½" it can't compete in the Toy category? It's just disqualified? I'm not trying to be obtuse here. I used to breed Chihuahuas and it was not unusual or a fault for both varieties - Long Coat and Smooth Coat - to appear in the same litter. If I'm understanding what you're saying, though, it sounds like the AKC treats Poodle varieties as if they were three different breeds.
 

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So if the offspring of two Miniatures only stands 9½" it can't compete in the Toy category? It's just disqualified? I'm not trying to be obtuse here. I used to breed Chihuahuas and it was not unusual or a fault for both varieties - Long Coat and Smooth Coat - to appear in the same litter. If I'm understanding what you're saying, though, it sounds like the AKC treats Poodle varieties as if they were three different breeds.
Yes, if there was 9.5" Poodle from Mini parents, it could compete in the Toy variety. Conversely, a 18" Mini could compete with the Standards (never seen it happen in AKC... have heard about it in UKC).

However, consider this. People showing Minis are showing Poodles that are typically 14-15" (many are even oversized by a fraction). The smallest show Mini I've seen being shown was a 13.5" bitch. She looked very small next to other bitches who were 14.5". Genetically you just don't see 9" offspring coming from 14.75" dams and sires. If you do, there is a dwarfism gene at work.

When I see a Mini that is 11.5-12.5 inches, I assume, and I'm usually right, that it is an overgrown Toy or a product of a Toy/Mini breeding or a Mini that has Toys in its pedigree. You don't typically see these types of breedings from good Toy or Mini breeders. Same goes for Standard. When I see a Poodle that is 18-19" tall, it is often a product of a Standard/Mini breeding. Good Standard breeders don't usually go this small and Mini breeders would cry themselves to sleep if their Minis got to be 18" tall.

We are technically 1 breed with three varieties, but our varieties are different in size, temperament and type.
 

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we call the oversize toys "tweenies" toy build with mini size..in between ;-)

in UKC the toy and mini are varieties ( and only one can go to companion group). the Standards are a separate breed and are shown in the GunDog group.
If you breed a UKC registered Mini and a UKC registered Standard they will not be registered by UKC. It's considered cross breeding.
But if you do the breeding and the parents are not UKC, then you can register with UKC using the single dog registration. Got ya confused yet???? LOL!!!
 

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here is my daughter's dog "Buster" ( YNot My Givandam Busted). he is 12", small mini from toy lines. When he was being shown in UKC, she entered him as a mini. One show we had an AKC judge and he asked why the dog wasn't being shown as a toy. I said he was 12" and the guy just shrugged and said he really is a toy..we both agreed :)
Buster did get his Gr CH and was neutered and placed in a pet home

 

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here is my daughter's dog "Buster" ( YNot My Givandam Busted). he is 12", small mini from toy lines. When he was being shown in UKC, she entered him as a mini. One show we had an AKC judge and he asked why the dog wasn't being shown as a toy. I said he was 12" and the guy just shrugged and said he really is a toy..we both agreed :)
Buster did get his Gr CH and was neutered and placed in a pet home

Buster's bone structure is much finer than any of the minis we have ever come into contact with, and I think that is a big factor in the build between the sizes.
 
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