The bichon poodle is one of the most distinctive dogs thanks to its characteristic curly hair like a poodle and light colored coat like a bichon frise. It's also a popular dog thanks to its exuberant personality and small, elegant appearance. A bichon poodle, however, is a high maintenance dog that requires frequent and regular grooming to not only keep them looking their best, but also to help prevent problems with their coats and skin.
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Bichon poodle hair
A bichon poodle is a cross between the toy or miniature poodle and the bichon frise. A bichon frise is always white, and has a crowning glory of a plush, fluffy coat. Poodles can come in a variety of colors, including cream, white, black, blue, or apricot. When bred together, there's no guarantee that your bichon poodle will be white, but it will inherit the poodle's curly hair and the bichon frise's dense, silky undercoat.
The bichon poodle has a medium-length coat that doesn't shed much. The hairs from the undercoat aren't able to fall through the wiry outer coat very well, so experts recommend daily brushing, which will make bathing and trimming easier.
Bichon poodle grooming
Brush your bichon poodle daily to prevent matting and knots from occurring. Using a dog grooming comb, comb the hair in small sections with upward strokes of the comb. Apply baby powder to any mats or knots that have formed and gently work the mat out using a de-matting comb or slicker brush. Even though the bichon poodle does not shed a lot, brushing with a shedding brush once a week can remove any loose fur from the undercoat.
First, brush your dog with a slicker brush. This is a type of brush with fine, short wires close together on a flat surface. The stiff wires are easily able to grab loose hair. A slicker brush like this one by Hertzko has a unique feature that retracts the wires into the brush frame with the touch of a button, so you can easily remove the collected hair.
Follow the slicker brush with a comb to remove tangles. These combs are sometimes also called "rakes." They can be shaped like shaving razors or more like brushes that have two layers of differently spaced and sized pins to detangle, like this Pat Your Pet Dematting Rake.
After brushing, trim the hair around the eyes and nose using blunt-tipped scissors. Nail and dental care is an important part of grooming for any dog that should not be neglected for your bichon poodle.
Bathe your bichon poodle
Bathe your bichon poodle every few weeks, but not too often as too much bathing could irritate their delicate skin. Use a hypoallergenic shampoo. Bichon frise's are known to develop skin problems related to allergies. A poodle, also, are prone to a variety of skin problems, including one called sebaceous adenitis, which presents as dry, scaly skin with patches of hair loss on the top of he head, neck, and back.
Bichon poodle eye problems
Both breeds are known to develop eye problems, from glaucoma in the case of toy poodles and cataracts in the case of the bichon frise. Grooming a bichon poodle should include eye wipes to reduce tear staining of their fur.
Feeding for a healthy coat
One of the keys to keeping a bichon poodle healthy is to keep their coat healthy. Not only will this result in an improved appearance, it will also make your job of grooming easier. Fatty acid supplements or high quality foods designed to provide higher amounts of fatty acids for a healthy coat are recommended.
Purina Pro Plan Essentials Shredded Blend Adult Dry Dog Food in Chicken & Rice flavor has vitamin A and linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid, to promote a healthy skin and coat. This one also has guaranteed live probiotics help to support digestive health.
Royal Canin makes a Small Adult Dog Food formulated specifically for dogs that are in the mini or toy range, like a bichon poodle. They need more calories, because their metabolism is higher than other dogs. Royal Canin's food adds an amino acid called L-carnitine to help metabolize fat, along with fatty acids EPA and DHA for a healthy coat and skin.
No dog will be able to resist a seafood-flavored treat like the Zesty Paws Omega Bites Supplement Soft Chew. Made from fish oil, the chews provide a rich source of EPA and DHA, which provide high levels of omega 3 fatty acids. They also include vitamin C, vitamin E, and biotin for additional skin and coat support.