Male Vs Female Poodle (Ultimate Comparison Guide)

You know you want a poodle, but you aren’t sure if you want a male or female. This is understandable, as poodle owners everywhere report that there are indeed differences in behavior, temperament, and more.  In that regard, we can say that this is not a rumor – there are some appreciable differences that you should be aware of.

Today we’ll break down some of the more notable differences in behavior, family socialization, and more so that you’ll have the information you need to choose the right poodle for you.

Let’s discuss the male vs. the female poodle!

What Are The Size Differences Between Males And Female Poodles?

When it comes to size, you might not initially think that there is a significant difference between the male and the female poodle. It’s an easy mistake, as both will average around 18 – 24 inches tall when fully grown. The thing is, we need to factor in the weights. Let’s take a look.


A male poodle is going to weigh 60 to 70 pounds when he is fully grown.


A female poodle will weigh only 40 to 50 pounds when she is fully grown.


As you can see, the female is definitely much daintier, with a 20-pound difference in the smallest and largest sizes. Even at her largest, the female is 10 pounds shy or the smallest sized male! It’s not about the height when it comes to poodle sizes, but the mass.

What Are The Temperament Differences Between Males And Female Poodles?

With some dogs, males are typically the more aggressive gender while the female tends to be kinder and easier to get along with. Do poodles fit this stereotype? Well, the answer is a little more complicated than that.


Male poodles are very playful, affectionate, and eager to please. They love to learn new tricks and are quite trainable in this regard. They want your attention, and they want it NOW.


Females are actually quite stubborn, pushy about what they want, and quite independent. They are more likely to entertain themselves with their toys or exploring around the house, and you have to work a little hard to get their attention.


With poodles, while both are affectionate, the male is actually the most affectionate gender. Females are more independent and will take care of themselves when you are busy. So, if you are looking for a lot of play and affection, then the male might be a better choice, but if you want affection that isn’t 24-7 then a female might be a better fit for you.

Is There A Price Difference Between Males And Female Poodles?

We’re starting to see that there is quite a contrast between the genders when it comes to this breed. One would imagine that this could have an impact on the price of obtaining a pup of the gender you’d prefer. Let’s see what the numbers say.


There are no appreciable differences in price for obtaining a male poodle.


There are no appreciable differences in price for obtaining a female poodle.


Poodles are quite expensive to begin with, and this is because it can cost a breeder around $5000 to breed and raise a litter. Adopting a poodle from a shelter is actually more cost-effective and saves a furry little guy or gal, so many will go this route to get their new little family friend.

Whether from a breeder or by adopting a poodle, there should be no differences in price for the gender that you select (unless, say, the female was spayed).

Are There Training Differences In Males And Female Poodles?

We’d mentioned that males respond more favorably to training, but does this mean that females cannot be coaxed into being trained as well? Here is what you need to know when it comes to training a male vs. a female poodle.


Males love attention and are nowhere near as independent as the female. To this effect, they love learning new tricks, and anyone in the family can teach them these tricks. Once they’ve learned, the training tends to stick.


Females tend to attach more to one member of the family, and they will listen to this person more. They are sometimes trained as service dogs because of this bonding behavior. However, they tend to be pushy about what they want and will stubbornly resist obedience training and make it an uphill climb for you.

Twice a year, the female will also go into heat, which produces mood swings, where she might forget her training altogether. Female poodle owners are often unprepared for this, so it’s something that you should be aware of to avoid being surprised.


Both breeds respond well to food in training, and both can be trained, but as far as ease of training, the male is definitely the easier gender. If one family member wants a dog that only listens to them, then the female is the better choice because of their tendency to bond to one person.

Want To Train Your Poodle With Peace Of Mind?

If you haven’t trained your poodle properly, then this is the perfect time to start. Whatever bad behavior your shepherd has, whether it’s barking at night or other bad behaviors, using the right training program is the key to having an obedient and happy pup.

The training program I love and highly recommend is Brain Training For Dogs.

With Brain Training For Dogs, you’ll save yourself a ton of time and effort. Instead of banging your head against the wall trying to figure out why your dog won’t listen, you’ll follow a path that has been tried, tested, and most importantly, that’s given proven results. Not to mention the fact, you’ll be able to fit the course around your schedule, not fit your schedule around a trainer or obedience class.

So instead of worrying about whether they’re going to be well-behaved or not, you’ll only have to worry about how much fun you’ll have with them!

And in most cases, it’s still going to be:

  • Cheaper than hiring a professional.
  • Cheaper than replacing everything they might break.
  • And definitely cheaper than a lawsuit against you, if they decide to bite someone.

Just imagine how great it will feel to finally be able to trust your poodle completely and never worry whether they’ll be naughty or not. Instead, you’ll have the peace of mind that you have a well-behaved pup, and the boundaries you set for them will always be there, EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT.

And the best part is it also has a 60-day money-back guarantee! So there’s no reason not to give Brain Training For Dogs a try!

So if you’re tired of your dog’s bad behavior or how they react around other people and pooches, then give it a try! You’ll be amazed by the results!

(You can also check out a full review here to learn exactly what the course has to offer!)

Are There Any Health Differences?

Poodles are known to be susceptible to certain health issues, such as bloat, hip dysplasia, epilepsy, eye diseases, and more. Is one gender more prone to certain health issues than the other? Let’s see what the statistics say.


No appreciable differences in health have been noted.


No appreciable differences in health have been noted.


Health issues for poodles do not appear to have any significant differences in occurrence based on gender. That said, both genders are at risk for many issues, as we’ve previously mentioned, so regular vet checkups are recommended to ensure that any developing issues are caught early enough to be manageable.

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Are Males or Females More Affectionate?

When it comes to affection, does one gender outweigh the other? Well, it really depends on the type of affection that you are looking for. Poodles, on the whole, are notably affectionate to their owners (although not necessarily to guests at home). How does this play out between the genders?


Male poodles are affectionate to everyone in the family equally. If you have kids, they’ll cuddle and play with them and learn tricks from any family member who wants to give them a little time for training.


The more independent female poodle will generally pick one family member and love them fiercely. The rest of the family… not so much. The female merely ‘tolerates’ them, in most cases.


If you are looking for a family dog, the male is generally the best choice. He’ll be friendly with everyone and will love them but doesn’t generally pick a favorite. The female is less like a dog and more like a best friend of one family member who will focus her love and attention on that one person.

Are Males Or Females More Independent/Dependent?

When it comes down to the statistics, who is the more dependent or independent of the poodle genders? Let’s look a little deeper into the subject.


Males are definitely more dependent and can be a little codependent without some socialization. For a lone owner, this could mean some crate-training is a good idea so that the male doesn’t become bored or feel neglected and start acting out.


Female poodles are quite independent and very protective of their owners. They are more likely to bark if someone is in the yard, rather than the male who might be focused on trying to play with you. Females take it a little further, though, and may try to establish dominance in the friendship.


Hands-down, the female poodle is the more independent one in this breed. She’s more territorial, much more protective, and will push and resist until you’ve established who the boss is. The ‘best friend’ description definitely fits.

Who Are Better For Families?

When it comes to selecting a family dog, it will depend on a few factors overall, but when it comes to general tendencies, the difference we list below is what you should expect.


Males are a great fit for a family. They tend to get along well with children, running about and playing with them and actively seeking out their attention. They tend to bond with every family member and will keep an eye out on everyone.


The female, as we’ve mentioned previously, tends to focus on one family member. This is not to say that she won’t love anyone else, but she will have a tendency to if you don’t train her otherwise. The ‘favorite’ family member will need to spend some time ‘convincing’ the female poodle that these other family members are okay.

So, with the female, there is a little extra work that is going to be required if you want her to be a family dog.


Factoring in their tendencies, the male is certainly the best fit as the family dog. With the least amount of effort, you’ll get the affection for every family member, and it will be shared equally among them. The female, by contrast, will definitely take some extra work.

The female poodle’s tendency to want to be the alpha means that once she has accepted her ‘chosen’ favorite as an alpha, she isn’t going to take any ‘guff’ from other family members whom she deems to be below her. This is pack behavior, and you can work with it; just know that some patience will be needed.

If you select a female as the family dog, you will also need to deal with the mood changes when she goes into heat unless you get her spayed. Spaying will prevent her from going into heat as well as a number of health issues, so it’s a very good idea if you want a female poodle as a family pet.

Who Are Better With Other Pets?

We’ve established how male and female poodles behave around people, so what about other animals. Let’s see how the male and the female poodle react when it comes to having other animals around.


Male poodles are more playful and trusting of the family as a whole; as a result, they are more likely to act in a curious fashion and be more trusting when a family member that they trust introduces them to a new dog.


Females don’t get along as easily with humans, and other dogs are not going to be different. An accidental touch from another dog can frighten the female into either running or, more likely, reacting aggressively.


While the male is more likely to get along with other dogs, the female can learn this behavior. Socialization training is a good idea for both male and female poodles or, indeed, any dog. Teaching them that other dogs are not a threat is the goal, and with a little training and a lot of patience, both genders can be made friendlier, or at least more tolerant of other canine companions.

Who Is A Male Best Suited For?

Overall, the male poodle is really going to be the perfect family dog. He looks for attention all of the time, he’s easier to train, and he is going to bond individually with every family member. In fact, this drive for attention means that a family environment is a better fit for the poodle, too.

Male poodles are prone to acting out if they don’t get enough attention, and so a family environment can help to ensure that the male is getting enough stimulation from play and attention to be happy and well-behaved.

Who Is A Female Best Suited For?

The female poodle is best-suited for a single owner or for a family individual who would like a dog but wants a dog that is loyal to them alone. The independent female poodle loves one person with all their heart, and while they might try to ‘push’ for dominance initially, once they’ve accepted that person, the bond that develops is fiercely strong.

Someone who wants a loyal best friend and not jumping on them all the time for attention would be well-advised to obtain a female poodle.

In conclusion: Male vs Female Poodles

Today we’ve explored the most common questions that potential poodle owners have about poodle gender and behavior. While there are no appreciable health differences, there are indeed some behavioral nuances that make each gender more unique.

The male is more playful and easier to train, while the female is more choosy and more protective of a single person. Now that you know the differences, you should be able to choose the perfect poodle companion for your specific needs and environment.

We wish you and your new poodle the best!