10 Haircuts for Poodles

By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: May 13, 2018
10 Haircuts for Poodles

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The poodle is undoubtedly one of the most popular dogs when it comes to trying out different haircuts and hairstyles thanks to the volume of its curly coat. Their coats' softness and hypoallergenic quality - besides their remarkable intelligence - make it one of the most popular dogs for professional dog groomers.

Do you live with a Toy Poodle, a Miniature Poodle, a Standard Poodle, a Giant Poodle, or a poodle crossbreed? The 10 haircuts we have compiled at AnimalWised can work wonders regardless of your pet's size or coat color.

Whether finished off with scissors or a machine, it's always advisable to go to a professional if you're not sure how to do it. Keep reading and find out the best 10 haircuts for poodles:

You may also be interested in: 10 Haircuts for a Yorkshire Terrier

1. Lion cut

The lion cut is probably the best known and most extravagant of all the poodle haircuts. The dog's limbs are hairless, with only a pompom around the front and back paws. The tail should be rounded off and the chest, stomach and head should be left with hair. It is the most widely used haircut in competitions and dog shows where is is also known as the Continental cut. Its elaborate style makes it impressive, but also takes a lot of time and effort (not to mention experience) to get right.

Image from National Geographic:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 1. Lion cut

2. English saddle cut

The English cut is very similar to the lion cut.The difference lies in an additional pompom on the hind legs, and the pelvic area being left at the same length as the chest.

Image from poodleforum:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 2. English saddle cut

3. Dutch cut

The Dutch cut is one of the most popular in dog contests and expositions. Unlike previous styles, this one is for those who are looking for a uniform style with no differences in length of the dog's coat. It's notable above all for the tail ending in a funny pompom. In the UK, this is referred to as the ‘sporting’ cut in the British Kennel Club.

Image from poodleforum:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 3. Dutch cut

4. Modern cut

The modern cut for poodles is probably the most suitable for owners who love following recent trends and enjoy watching canine beauty competitions. This is also known as the Scandinavian cut or European cut in some sectors, especially in the United States of America.

It seeks to achieve a careful and professional finish, without being as exaggerated as the aforementioned styles. It is an aesthetic cut, yet at the same time it is very natural. It follows the shape of the body, emphasizing the ears and tail as much as the head.

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 4. Modern cut

5. Puppy cut

The puppy haircut is very popular among most small dog breeds, such as Yorkshire Terriers or West Highland White Terriers.

This is a very trendy cut for Miniature Poodles, and it isn't difficult to work out why: This haircut really makes your poodle look like a puppy. This style doesn't aim to achieve a defined or sharp-looking finish. On the contrary, the fur should look natural and fresh. The American Kennel Club claims there should be a pompom on the end of the tail.

Image from temporary-secretary:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 5. Puppy cut

6. Summer cut

Many dog owners wonder if it's bad to give their dogs a haircut during the summer. Not all dogs should follow the example of the poodle, which is a breed that adapts perfectly to different haircuts.

Summer is a hot period that makes your beloved poodle get dirtier than usual - especially if you take it to the beach or go for a walk in the woods. Therefore, giving it a summer cut is a good idea: You will help to keep it cool while achieving some interesting aesthetic finishes, as shown below.

Image from

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 6. Summer cut

7. Cupcake cut

This haircut is not very well known, possibly because of how strange the poodle looks once it is done. The cupcake cut is notable for leaving the ears absolutely rounded as a result of being thoroughly styled.

It is also notable for the shape of its head - which ends in a point - which bears a clear resemblance to a delicious muffin.

Image from huxtablethepoodle.blogspot:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 7. Cupcake cut

8. Teddy bear cut

The teddy bear cut is increasingly popular among long-haired dog breeds. This finish must be done with scissors, and it requires hands with experience in styling poodles.

The hair should be left mid-length so that the poodle's curls can be seen clearly. This gives a sweet and rounded finish which makes it look like a bear, as the name suggests.

Make sure you know how often to bathe a poodle in order for their fur to look gorgeous at all times.

Image from yiral:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 8. Teddy bear cut

9. Town and country cut

This type of hair cut is increasingly popular in the United States, where it's known as the "town and country" cut.

Its defining feature is that it leaves the legs hairy and cylinder-shaped. The body hair, on the other hand, is cut shorter, which accentuates the density of the leg hairs. The head and ears have a rounded finish.

Image from najupets:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 9. Town and country cut

10. Short hair

While it's not very common to see a short-haired poodle, it remains an aesthetic option that will avoid knots, tangles and dirt building up in its coat. It is a good option for those who can't go to the dog stylist as often as they would like to.

Image from notastandardpoodle-gregg.blogspot:

10 Haircuts for Poodles - 10. Short hair

Send us a photo of your dog!

Do not forget to share your poodle's haircut in the comments so that others can get inspired. Thank you for visiting AnimalWised!

If you want to read similar articles to 10 Haircuts for Poodles, we recommend you visit our Beauty tips category.

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What did you think of this article?
It's a really very good post related to hairstyle, All these hairstyles are amazing which guides everyone, it gives such a great information which is very helpful. thanks for sharing such grate ideas.
Administrador AnimalWised
Thank you ChillyBuz!
Terri Ferrier
did the writer not think to consult with a real professional groomer before writing this article? and where did those godawful photos of the grooms come from?
Administrador AnimalWised
Hi Terri,

We have already addressed the issue of different approaches to Poodle grooming in the comments below. These cuts and styles are confirmed by professionals, but there is an issue with a lack of standardization among groomers in terms of naming them. We are a supportive community of animal lovers here, so please restrict your comments to those of the helpful or constructive kind.
Here's my mini silver poodle in "The Miami Clip" very easy to maintain, short cut, nice clean face, just ankle bracelets, tail pom, head puffed and ears one length. I've had my favorite clip "The Continental Clip" but it was a lot of effort to maintain.
Mimi has a lamb cut
Administrador AnimalWised
And how adorable she looks, thank you for sharing!
Liam Neal
I looked these different poodle cuts online and they all seem to be correct! I think the photos are very useful, i’m confused to what the problem is?
Geoff Rance
There defintitely is a puppy cut! It's the standard for AKC showing for younger dogs. The rest of the cuts seem to be correct as far as I can tell and some groomers will just use different terminology.
I don't see why people are being so negative about these haircuts. I have had Poodles for the last 15 years and have taken them to different groomers (we moved states about 3 years ago) and the groomers used different names for the same cut. More important was showing a picture of the cut I wanted. I have never shown my dogs in competition, but if I did I would hope the groomer would know which ones were suitable.
I disagree with a lot of the comments above. My groomer usually produces what I call a Teddy bear cut or puppy cut all the time. I can't wait to ask for a cupcake and show him the picture. I think its adorable. Names are just that names and every region is going to have different ones, and one must remember slang/everyday names is more than likely going to be what poodle owners remember and request from their groomer. Don't be so uptight and be more flexible. Ask for an image if you aren't sure exactly what your client asks for. A cupcake sounds like a perfect name for that look. Thanks for the inspiration on my next cut.
Administrador AnimalWised
Hi Yvette,

Thank you for your input, it's appreciated. Also, when you do take your Poodle for that cupcake cut, please post a picture here and share it with us, we'd love to see!
Lisa Rojas
I wanted to explain to the admin why it's so important to have the correct names for the grooms to be listed. As an industry leader we fight tooth and nail for consistent verbiage to describe the type of groom that a dog has. So yes, although there are many names for particular grooms, there is only one correct one and utilizing other names becomes confusing and forces the industry to correct our clients on a daily basis. It's not an easy task to do and to do so without making the client feel...uneducated, is even more difficult. The degree of importance is difficult to express, like over the top important! Examples include "a puppy cut" one of the more widely misused terms to describe ......what? The truth is there's no such thing as a puppy cut other than what pertains to a young poodle under 9 months: however, the term has been misused in regards to any breed. We have no idea what they may mean because the interpretation is so different from person to person. Please, please help us to educate and not propagate it's misuse.
Administrador AnimalWised
Hi Lisa,

Thank you for your informed and helpful comment. We appreciate that there is certain importance in having industry standards to help people get the cut they want. Unfortunately, the main problem is highlighted by the phrase ‘there is only one correct one’. As the name is so subjective, there often is no ‘correct’ one. If it depends on person to person and region to region, it sometimes comes down to opinion.

In the USA, the American Kennel Club only allows twos styles for showing adult Poodles - the Continental and English Saddle cuts (numbers 1 and 2 on our list, respectively). They do also give the guidelines for an ‘official’ puppy cut in their breed standard pack. However, these have different names in Europe and the British Kennel Club also allows the Dutch cut or Sporting cut.

Apart from the four cuts mentioned above, the other variations are just that, variations. Their names are also variations and we have tried to cater to our international readership by providing some of the alternative names as well as pictures (which speak a thousand words).
Well nearly none of these cuts are accurate. I am a dog groomer of 6 years and if a client ever read your article and said they wanted a puppy cut or especially a cup cake cut. I’d probably quit
Administrador AnimalWised
Hi Brittany,

We are sorry that you seem to have taken these poodle hairstyles so personally, but a quick Google image search will corroborate their accuracy. We have a very international readership and certainly some places will have different names for different cuts. However, if you ask your customers to point to the picture of the cut they want, hopefully you be able to use it as a point of reference for the style they want.

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