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Just a curious q: Are there special challenges to grooming parti poodles because of the mix of different fur textures? Do they also have different skin textures corresponding to the different fur patches? For example, I always heard that white poodles have thinner skin and softer, finer hair than black poodles.
 

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Snarky had a white streak like a lightning bolt running up the back of his neck. I noticed this area tended to mat before his solid spots. His white and his brown definitely had different textures. I don't notice as much difference on Pogo's black & white spots.
 

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This makes sense to me, although I've yet to see much of a difference as Peggy's still going through her adult coat change. It's all rather unruly at the moment, but the white hair does feel more wispy.

Her skin is pink where she's got white hair, and blue where she's got black hair. She's even got pink and black spotted gums and a spotted belly.
 

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my boy is not so challenging but he is an apricot toy (4.5 lbs or so) and has relatively straight hair. It seems to be more straight than the traditional curly coats. Any tips on how to get the curls to sprout from his straight coat?
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Just a curious q: Are there special challenges to grooming parti poodles because of the mix of different fur textures? Do they also have different skin textures corresponding to the different fur patches? For example, I always heard that white poodles have thinner skin and softer, finer hair than black poodles.
You are quite right - different colors have different textures. This is the reason behind the poodle breed standard specifying that poodles should be a solid color. That statement is the the AKC standard, the Kennel Club (Great Britain) standard, the FCI standard (European), the Australian standard and probably all others.
 

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my boy is not so challenging but he is an apricot toy (4.5 lbs or so) and has relatively straight hair. It seems to be more straight than the traditional curly coats. Any tips on how to get the curls to sprout from his straight coat?
Omg he's adorable! I'm definitely not an expert, but the standard for the Hungarian Pumi (who have a naturally straighter, but also coarser coat) calls for them to be wet down and air dried, otherwise their coat ends up more straight and scraggly if blow dried. I think the Bedlington has a more soft, lint-y, straight coat as well; I'm not sure how they get the poofy look.
 
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