Red Poodle: Info, Facts, Appearance & Genetics (With Pictures)

Red Poodle tongue out

Poodles come in many stunning colors, and one of the rarest ones is the red Poodle. If you’re looking for a cuddly and intelligent pooch with a unique color, this one might be your perfect match!

We normally see white, black, and brown Poodles, but we rarely encounter red varieties. Red-colored Poodles have striking coats that leave most people in awe. Due to their rarity, it’s no question that many people want to own one as a pet.

Red Poodles might appear different, but their behavioral characteristics are no different than your regular Poodle. 

If you’re interested to learn more about these remarkable dogs, I’ll be more than happy to guide you through each aspect.

What Is a Red Poodle?

Red Poodle looking upwards

A red Poodle is one of the unique color variations of the Poodle breed. Red Poodles are characterized by their reddish-brown coat brought about by their “Rufus” gene. Aside from its coat color, the red Poodle shares most of its traits with the rest of the Poodle breed.

The red Poodles we know today were developed by lse Konig of the Shangri-La Kennel. 

These dogs were made by crossing a male Standard Poodle and a female apricot Miniature Poodle. The first litter they developed produced four red Poodle puppies.

After many years of selective breeding, red Poodles became available in all standard sizes of the Poodle breed as recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC).

Are Red Poodles Rare?

Red Poodles are one of the rarest Poodle colors. They are not as widely available as other color variations because the gene that causes their red coat is not dominant.

The “Rufus” gene is a rare gene that causes the base color of the Poodle to darken into a red color. This gene is a fairly recent discovery, so very few Poodles exhibit this coat.

Furthermore, there are so few red Poodles available in the dog market that many backyard breeders resort to unethical breeding methods to produce them. 

One such method is called inbreeding. This means that two related red Poodles are mated together. Since it is a very rare type, the demand for red Poodles is only expected to increase over time.

What Is the Difference Between a Red Poodle and an Apricot Poodle?

More often than not, red Poodles are confused with apricot Poodles. However, when you observe closely, you’ll instantly notice the difference in their shade.

The coat color of apricot Poodles appears like a light red color with some darker red tint to their hair.

Here’s how an apricot Poodle looks:

Apricot Poodle in the woods

Compared to a red Poodle, the apricot Poodle’s coat is a less vibrant shade of red. However, there are dark apricot Poodles that can still be mistaken for red varieties.

One way to tell them apart is to observe the color changes that occur as the Poodle matures.

Red Poodles often go from a lighter coat to a darker coat as they get older, or vice versa. Meanwhile, dark apricot Poodles are less likely to have faded coats once they are fully grown.

Take a look at this photo of a red Poodle:

Red Poodle

As you can see, the red Poodle’s coat is a dark shade of red-brown. Even though apricot and red Poodles come from the same color family, the gene that causes their color are completely different. 

A Poodle’s red tint is exhibited through the Rufus gene, while the apricot color is expressed by a different recessive gene.

Watch this video to see red Poodle puppies in action:

A day in the life with red toy poodle puppies

Red Poodle Appearance

Standard red Poodle in a walking stride

Red is one of the recognized Poodle coat colors. Red Poodles are fluffy-looking dogs with naturally red coats. Their shade typically ranges from a dark red, like dark auburn hair, to a light copper tone. 

Aside from their coat color, their physical features don’t really differ from other purebred Poodles. Hence, red Poodles share most of their traits with black, parti, phantom, and the rest of the 31+ Poodle coat colors.

In terms of coat texture, the red Poodle can have curly or corded coats. Those classified as curly will have a naturally harsh-textured coat that is dense throughout. 

On the other hand, corded red Poodles have tight-hanging, even cords of different lengths. 

Typically, the mane or body coat, head, and ears are longer, while the dog’s puffs, bracelets, and pompons are shorter.

The red Poodle also has the distinct facial features of a Poodle — a long pointed nose and small dark eyes. 

Their floppy ears are thickly feathered and hang close to the face. The muzzle is long and straight, and the chin is well-defined.

A true red Poodle also has black points, which include the nose, gums, under paws, and rim of the eyes. Liver points are acceptable but not desirable.

Like other colored Poodles, red Poodles come in three standard Poodle sizes. To better understand their differences, let’s discuss them one by one.

Standard Red Poodle

Standard red Poodle on a leash

Red Standard Poodles are the largest variety of this red-colored pooch. In adulthood, they grow over 15 inches tall at the withers. 

Males are heavier than females, weighing anywhere between 60 and 70 pounds. Females, on the other hand, only weigh around 40 to 50 pounds as adults.

Miniature Red Poodle

Miniature red Poodle

Miniature red Poodles are the smaller versions that grow no more than 15 inches tall when fully grown. In terms of weight, both male and female Miniature Poodles weigh between 12 and 20 pounds.

Toy Red Poodle

Red toy Poodle

Red Toy Poodles are the smallest standard size for red Poodles. These tiny dogs have a height of around 10 inches tall when fully grown. They weigh between 6 and 9 pounds, sometimes even less.

Non-standard sizes include the red teacup Poodle and the red Moyen Poodle. The former is 9 inches in height and weighs less than 6 pounds. 

Meanwhile, the latter is a new size variation with a height of 15 to 20 inches and a weight of 18 to 22 pounds.

Regardless of their size, red Poodles will have the same distinguishing features. You can’t miss their delightful faces and enchanting gaze.

Red Poodle Color Genetics

Genetics plays a significant role in determining a Poodle’s coat color. For red Poodles, it depends on a completely separate gene that gives the red tint to their coats.

According to a scientist named John Armstrong, red Poodles result from a recessive gene called the Rufus gene.

This red gene is responsible for darkening a Poodle’s apricot or brown coat. This is why most red Poodles come from apricot bloodlines.

When the Poodle carries two copies of the Rufus or faded gene, the coat color will automatically be red. 

However, since red is dominant to apricot Poodles, two red Poodles can have apricot puppies, but not vice versa. The red gene will also be passed to all of the Poodle’s offspring.

Do Red Poodle Puppies Fade as They Grow?

Red Poodle playing outdoors

Red Poodles usually go through many color changes as they grow. Most of the time, they are born with a bright red coat that fades over time, typically after six weeks old. 

When the pup reaches ten weeks old, you will begin to observe a definite dark red line, indicating a new coat color.

When a red Poodle’s coat lightens, the color will change to a somewhat cinnamon shade. Their exceptionally dark puppy coat is expected to fade between 12 and 18 months old.

In other cases, a red Poodle is born with a lighter shade of red that gradually darkens as the dog grows, depending on its genetic material.

Since fading is very common in red Poodles, you are in for a huge surprise once your red Poodle puppy develops a stunning, rare color. 

Does AKC Recognize Red Poodles?

Unlike other Poodle colors, red was only recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) as an official color variety in 1980. They are considered a darker variation of the standard apricot color.

Despite being recognized a little later than its other colored cousins, you can freely register your red Poodle to join various AKC conformation shows, obedience, and agility events.

Depending on your dog’s size, you can choose to register them as a red standard red Poodle, a red Miniature Poodle, or a red Toy Poodle.

Red Poodle Temperament and Personality

Side view of a red Poodle

Many people speculate that coat color affects a Poodle’s personality. The red Poodle is no exception to this hypothesis. However, due to a lack of evidence, such claims remain superstitious.

With this in mind, you can ensure that your red Poodle’s coat color has nothing to do with the temperament they will develop. The truth is, they will behave no differently than other colored Poodles.

If anything, it will be their gender that has a direct effect on their temperament. Likewise, a Poodle’s diet and upbringing are other factors that may also affect its personality.

That said, Poodles generally make wonderful family pets. They are generally loyal, alert, trainable, and very clingy. As intelligent breeds, they are also considered suitable guard dogs.

These dogs need a lot of mental stimulation throughout the day. Interactive toys, puzzles, and lots of physical activities and playtime are recommended.

When their exercise needs are not met, they may resort to chewing, digging, and other unruly behavior to expend their energy. 

Allocating time and attention to your red Poodle is crucial in combating boredom and ensuring that they grow up to be even-tempered dogs.

Red Poodle Lifespan and Health Issues

Red Poodles are considered healthy dogs with a life expectancy of 10 to 18 years. These dogs may even live past this age if given proper diet, exercise, and veterinary care.

However, red Poodles may still face several health issues in their lifetime. While some are easily treatable, others can be fatal.

Here are some of the health problems your red Poodle can inherit or develop throughout its life:

  • Hip Dysplasia: This is a condition that occurs when the hip joint fails to develop correctly. As a result, the affected dog experiences pain due to the deterioration of the ball-and-socket joint. Hip dysplasia often progresses to a more severe bone condition called osteoarthritis.
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease: This condition happens when the head of the femur starts to degenerate. It causes the dog to limp on the affected leg. The exact cause of Legg-Calve-Perthes disease remains unknown. 
  • Luxating Patella: When a dog’s kneecap moves out of its normal position, the resulting condition is called luxating patella. Red Toy Poodles are genetically predisposed to have this problem. Surgery is often done to treat severe cases.
  • Idiopathic Epilepsy: This is a neurological condition marked by involuntary seizures with no known cause. Idiopathic epilepsy is mainly experienced by Poodles. The episodes are known to worsen and become more unpredictable over time.

If you want to ensure that your red Poodle lives a long, healthy life, you should only purchase from a reputable breeder. A trustworthy breeder should be able to provide genetic health tests for birth defects and other health-related documents.

How Much Does a Red Poodle Cost? Puppy Prices & Expenses

Red Poodle indoors

The typical cost of a red Poodle puppy ranges from $1,000 to $1,500. A well-bred red Poodle can even be priced at $2,000 or higher.

Aside from the puppy cost, you should expect to pay for initial expenses such as dog food, toys, bedding, and grooming tools. 

To help plan your finances, here is a table that summarizes the initial expenses of a red Poodle puppy:

Type of ExpenseCost
Food and Treats$50 – $120
Food and Water Bowls$10 – $35
Bed$30 – $200
Crate$30 – $500
Leashes and Collars$15 – $50
Toys$20 – $50
Grooming Essentials$30 – $180
Deworming, Flea, and Tick Medications$50 – $200
Initial Vet Visits$100 – $300
Initial Vaccine Shots$75 – $200
Neutering or Spaying$50 – $500
Dog License$10 – $20
Microchip$40 – $60
Miscellaneous Supplies$15 – $30
Total Initial Cost$525 – $2,445

The estimated initial cost of getting a red Poodle is not as expensive as you think. You can even save more by searching for discounts or buying supplies in bulk. 

You can also ask fellow red Poodle owners for affordable vet recommendations, pet insurance, and other money-saving tips.

Places to Find Red Poodle Puppies for Sale or Adoption

Getting the right puppy is not that easy, especially if you’re a first-time owner. Unlike with other breeds, most red Poodle breeders have extremely long waiting lists due to the dog’s rarity.

Because of this, many people are inclined to support puppy mills that can provide faster service. However, these places may secretly sell designer dogs or mixed breeds in bad health conditions.

Here are the best places to get red Poodle puppies:

  • Darla’s Red Standard Poodles – For 45 years, this breeder has been providing high-quality Standard Poodles with dark red coats. Before being taken to their new homes, all of their puppies are subjected to their special bio-sensor stimulation technique to become familiar with different neurological stimuli.
  • Lumiere Standard Poodles – This is another breeder that focuses on producing red and apricot Standard Poodles. They strive to produce dogs that adhere to standards and have the best temperaments. They are also proud members of the Apricot Red Poodle Club.
  • Cerise Poodles – You can also buy your next red Poodle from this breeder located in Minnesota. They breed according to the standards established by the Poodle Club of America. They are also home to some champion red Poodles.

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for adoptable Poodles, you can reach out to the following rescue organizations below:

  • NorCal Poodle Rescue – This is the third-largest Poodle rescue in the United States. They have been rescuing and rehabilitating Poodles and Poodle mixes since 1985. The cost of spaying/neutering, microchipping, and gastropexy are included in the adoption fee.
  • Arizona Poodle Rescue – Arizona Poodle rescue has been around since 2003. They have rescued over 4,000 dogs since their establishment, most of them being Poodle and Poodle mixes. Make sure to reach out to them to see if there are red Poodles available.
  • Carolina Poodle Rescue – This is another rescue aiming to help abandoned Poodles find new families. They are a fairly new organization, but the number of their rescued Poodles increases every year. They also have a separate program for rescuing senior dogs.

Due to popular demand, these rescues might not always have an available red Poodle for you to adopt. It is crucial that you pack a lot of patience if you are going to adopt this hue.

Dog Name Ideas for Red Poodle Puppies

Red Poodle puppies lying in their dog bed

Naming a red Poodle is pretty simple. One way to do it is by finding inspiration from all things fiery or reddish. 

That said, here are some name ideas for male red Poodle puppies:

  • Ember
  • Dynamite
  • Heinz
  • Firecracker
  • Fuego
  • Sparks
  • Flame
  • Autumn
  • Mars
  • Flame
  • Garnet
  • Rusty

Here are some name ideas for female red Poodle puppies:

  • Ariel
  • Apple
  • Phoenix
  • Spice
  • Ladybug
  • Reba
  • Autumn
  • Flannery
  • Merlot
  • Paprika
  • Penny
  • Raspberry
  • Sienna
  • Topaz

When naming your red Poodle, it is recommended to pick an easy-to-remember word. However, you are always free to choose whatever fancy name you desire to call your pooch.

In fact, it doesn’t have to be based on your dog’s coat color. It can be as simple as your favorite cartoon character or favorite food!

Frequently Asked Questions

Red Poodle with autumn leaves in the background

What Is the Rarest Color of Poodles?

Apricot is the rarest Poodle color. Apricot Poodles result from recessive genes that exhibit a very light red shade that borders on cream. They are often confused with red Poodles, but they are much lighter.

What Is the Most Popular Poodle Color?

The most popular Poodle color is black. It is also one of the most common Poodle colors. As the most dominant color gene, any color mixed with a black Poodle will mostly produce black puppies.

What Color Nose Does a Red Poodle Have?

A red Poodle should have a black nose. Although undesirable, liver points, meaning liver-colored noses, eye rims, gums, and under paws, are also accepted. However, a true red should always have a black nose.

What Color Poodle Is the Smartest?

Although not scientifically proven, many people believe that black and white Poodles are the smartest. This is because they are the original colors of the breed. However, this claim is yet to be backed up by studies.

Final Thoughts

If you want an intelligent and energetic small fluffy dog, the red Poodle might be your match. Despite having a rare coat, this dog has all the qualities of a normal Poodle. 

Red Poodles are also regarded as hypoallergenic dogs, which makes them suitable for allergy sufferers. 

Aside from this admirable trait, you will also fall in love with their personalities. As much as these dogs crave mental stimulation, they also love human interaction.

So, are you adding this dog to your family? Let us know your thoughts about the red Poodle in the comment section below!

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