One of the brightest breeds, poodles are energetic, playful and affectionate. Toy and miniature poodles tend to be more reserved than standard poodles, particularly around strangers and children. They are, however, easy to train and readily adapt to city life when they get plenty of exercise and social interaction.
Every dog breed carries a distinct set of genetic advantages and health risk factors. The following are the most common diseases found in the Toy and Miniature Poodle breeds. Hopefully, your toy or miniature poodle will not face these problems. However, early detection and preventive healthcare can make all the difference in helping your dog live a longer, happier life (see breed-related disease descriptions below).
Puppy (birth to 1 year)*
Adult (1 to 6 years)*
Senior (7 years and older)*
Breed-related disease descriptions
Listed in alphabetical order. *Please note that these common diseases can occur earlier or later in the dog’s life.
Bladder stones. May be due to bladder infection or abnormal excretion of minerals by the kidneys. Signs may include increased frequency of urination, straining or inability to urinate, and blood in the urine.
Cataracts. Opacity (loss of clearness) of the lens of the eyeball. Signs may include cloudiness in the inside in the center of one or both eyes. Poor vision or blindness.
Cushing’s syndrome. Caused by excessive cortisol (a steroid) production by the adrenal glands. Signs include increased thirst and urination, increased appetite, weight gain, distended abdomen, hair loss and skin infections.
Diabetes mellitus. Insufficient insulin resulting in high blood sugar (glucose) levels with resultant spilling of glucose into the urine. Signs include lethargy, increased drinking and urinating, increased appetite, weight loss and cataract formation. Diabetes mellitus can, if untreated, lead to vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, collapse and death.
Patella luxation. The kneecap slips out of place occasionally leading to pain and lameness. Symptoms include holding the affected limb up off the ground, not wanting to exercise and lameness of hind legs.
Patent ductus arteriosis. Birth defect in which the connection between the two major blood vessels taking blood away from the heart (the pulmonary artery and the aorta) remains open rather than closing once the pet is born.
Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). A disease of light sensitive cells in the back of the eye (retina) that causes progressive visual impairment leading to blindness. Signs may include night blindness, bumping into objects, dilated pupils, a shining appearance to the eyes, reluctance to exercise or play, or “clinginess.”
Tear staining. Wetness and discoloration of facial hair from tear overflow (epiphora). Most commonly seen in the corner of the eye near the nose.
Tracheal collapse. Progressive weakening of the walls of the trachea (wind pipe) which allows it to collapse in on itself. Signs may include coughing (especially when excited or during exercise), difficulty breathing and wheezing. Cough often sounds harsh or like honking.
Help your dog live a longer, healthier life. Ask your veterinarian about a breed-related preventive health plan.