Skip to Content

Ask A Vet: Do Poodles Have Hair Or Fur? (2023)

Do Poodles Have Hair Or Fur

Poodles have such a unique coat…

Moreover, you’re not sure of what to call it.

Is it hair or fur?

Some people attest that it’s the former, and you’ll find out if they’re right…

Keep reading to discover:

  • Whether Poodles have hair or fur.
  • 3 differences between hair and fur.
  • If Poodles are hypoallergenic (and if they shed).
  • And much, much more…

Do Poodles have hair or fur?

Poodles have hair, not fur. That’s why they’re known not to shed at all. It’s because hair never stops growing. But from time to time, some of their hair fall off. Moreover, their coat has major grooming requirements. With that, Poodles have high maintenance hair.

Differences between hair and fur

You’d often notice these two being interchanged when referring to a dog’s coat…

But what is the exact difference between hair and fur?

Let me compare the two…

What is hair in dogs?

QualityDescription (compared to fur)
ThicknessThicker or fuller
DensityLess dense

First of all, hair is made up of a protein called keratin.

What’s that?

It’s the protein assigned to maintain the hair’s structure.

Plus, it’s also present in your dog’s skin and nails.

Moreover, hair grows out of a thing called the hair follicle. Such also works as an anchor that holds the hair.

Now, let’s compare hair with fur…

Hair length

Poodle Hair

The first and most notable distinction is its length.

Hair is longer than fur.


That’s because hair just keeps growing.

So, a Poodle can grow long hair if left unmaintained. That’s why dogs with hair need regular grooming sessions.

They need scheduled haircuts if dog parents don’t want a pooch with such long hair.

Hair thickness

Individual hair strands are also thicker.

That’s why their coat appears fuller despite the…

Hair density

In dogs, hair is less dense. That’s why their appearance isn’t that much compact.

What does that mean?

First, let me clarify what density is…

It’s the amount of hair per area within the skin.

And do you know how much do dogs have?

The average pooch has about 15,000 pieces of hair per square inch of their skin.

Now, for dogs with hair, the amount can be lower than that.

But as I said, their coats will still look full because of the hair’s thickness.

What is fur in dogs?

QualityDescription (compared to fur)
ThicknessThinner or finer

Just like hair, fur is also made up of the same protein called keratin.

Then, they also grow out of the same hair follicle.

With that, the difference lies in the following:

Fur length

Compared to hair, fur is much shorter.

Why? What influenced this difference?

Research says that it’s because of the so-called hair growth cycle.

To understand better, here’s a table of the phases of that cycle:

AnagenThe phase where the hair is actively growing.
CatagenThe point where the hair is fully grown.
TelogenThis is also known as the resting phase. Hair has stopped growing and remains dormant.
ExogenThis is the end of the cycle. It’s where the hair finally falls off. Thus giving way to anagen.

Now, fur usually has a short hair growth cycle. 

Moreover, the anagen phase of fur is also brief. With that, fur doesn’t grow much.

As for hair, their anagen phase is continuous.

And yes, catagen and telogen phases are still present in hair. That’s because the hair in some areas stops growing at a certain point.

Regardless, hair doesn’t always come up to the exogen phase. It’s mostly just long periods of anagen for hair.

Did you know? This study reveals that hair growth is more rapid in the dog’s shoulder region.

Fur thickness

Unlike hair, fur is much thinner.

Their individual strands appear to be finer.

Well, now, how about thickness…

What influences hair or fur to be thick or thin?

The answer to that isn’t simple. That’s because many factors affect hair or fur’s thickness. Namely:


Did you know? Stress can contribute to your dog’s coat appearance.

If they’re experiencing stress, their coat will appear dry and dull.

When stressed, dogs release a hormone called adrenaline. Then, even the hair follicles receive that hormone.

And when they do, it leads to the thinning of the hair.

However, vets still don’t know how adrenaline exactly does that to the hair.

All in all, stress can cause your dog’s hair to become thin. Then, it can also lead to shedding.

Read also: Why is my dog shedding so much in the summer?

Health condition

As a dog parent, you can use your fur baby’s coat as a way to tell their health.

If they’re healthy, their hair or fur will look luxurious and flowing. It’ll appear shiny and moisturized.

Compare that to an unhealthy or sick dog…

Like stress, illness can make a canine’s coat look dull. 

A general example is an illness that creates a hormonal imbalance in dogs.

So, their skin will be dry to the touch.

Most of all, their hair or fur is unhealthy and thinner as well.


If you wanna make sure that your dog’s nutritious, just look at their hair or fur.

Like their health, hair or fur also reflects the dog’s nutrition.

When they aren’t receiving proper nutrients, your pooch will have a coat that lacks luster.

So, feed your canine the best possible dog food you can afford. Aim to give them the highest quality.

That’s because low-quality dog food is full of preservatives and additives. Those components do nothing for your pooch…

Those don’t carry any necessary nutrients.

Instead, they take up the space that essential nutrients should be taking.

Fur density

Despite fur being thinner and shorter, they made up when it comes to density.

You see, dogs with fur have a much denser coat.

As I said, the average canine has about 15,000 strands of hair per square inch.

Now, dogs with fur might have more than that.

And that’s why their coat still appears compact despite their fur being thinner.

Are Poodles hypoallergenic?

Poodles are considered to be hypoallergenic. In fact, they hold the title of the least allergenic dog there is. This applies to a Standard, Toy, or Miniature Poodle and all the other varieties of the breed.

Now, I say they’re the least allergenic dogs

And I’ll clarify that after a short while…

Moreover, when you cross Poodles with other canines…

Chances are a hypoallergenic dog will be the offspring.

Note: The probability is much higher if the other parent dog is considered hypoallergenic as well.

For example, a Goldendoodle might come out as hypoallergenic, too. 

With that, they took after their Poodle parent.

That aside, let me clarify something else with the help of VCA Hospitals…

No dog is 100% hypoallergenic

Yes, you read that right…

Vets say that there’s no such dog that’s fully hypoallergenic.

So, what’s with all this fuss?

They clarified that some dogs are just less likely to trigger allergies.

And a great example of that is Poodles.

This is what I was talking about…

Poodles are considered the least allergenic dogs. Thus earning the title that I mentioned earlier.

Moreover, Poodles have hair. Then, that hair doesn’t fall off.

Instead, their hair continuously grows.

And that means that they shed less…

Now such a quality contributes to the title that Poodles have.


Let me explain further the nature of human allergies towards dogs.

Being allergic to dogs

Allergic To Dogs

The AAAAI states that 62% of households in the US have a fur baby.

Then, the ACAAI tells us that 10% of Americans are allergic to dogs.

Now, for some of those people, their allergies are somewhat selective…

That means they can stand some dogs, and others they can’t. 

However, there are also people that react to every dog.

Now, why is that?

It’s because dog hair or fur isn’t the allergen at all…

Instead, it’s pet dander.

What’s that?

You might recognize it by its common name: dead skin.

So dander is nothing but flakes of dead skin…

That whenever a dog sheds, danders also fall off.

Then, it can spread around the environment.

Up until someone inhales them and gets an allergic reaction. Then, experts say that these signs will show:

  • Sneezing.
  • Runny nose.
  • Wheezing and coughing.
  • Itching of the area around the eyes.

Do Poodles shed?

Poodles don’t shed. That’s because they have hair that continuously grows.

As I said, dogs with hair have a continuous anagen phase.

To remind you, that’s the period of active hair growth in the cycle.

Moreover, only little few hairs fall off from Poodles. And such is a rare occurrence.

So say that you don’t wanna get your place covered in fur…

But you definitely want a fur baby for yourself…

Then, you can go for a Poodle.

There are also many variations of Poodle to choose from.

Moreover, as I said, their hybrid offsprings have the same amazing feature.

But wait, there’s a catch…

So you wouldn’t have to prepare a vacuum cleaner every now and then…

However, you’ll have to give more effort when it comes to your Poodle’s maintenance.


That’s because…

Poodles are high maintenance

When it comes to grooming, Poodles require a lot.

To keep them looking fabulous, they need a regular grooming session.

And their distinct hair needs the best grooming care. With that, I highly suggest taking them to a professional groomer.

So, you’ll need to take your Poodle for a monthly haircut…

Then, you’re gonna have to brush their hair daily. You must use a slicker or pin brush in doing so.

As for other grooming needs, their nails need regular trimming, too.

Lastly, their ears need constant checking as well. Observe for any signs of odor or debris.
Reading tip: Revealed: 19 Dogs That Don’t Smell Or Shed