Both the Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle are medium-sized and make wonderful canine companions. These breeds are also athletic and affectionate, but there are some differences potential owners will need to know. 

If you can’t decide between these two lovable dogs, this comparison will help you find the best breed for you.

Portuguese Water Dog and Poodle Quick Comparison Chart

Poodle (Standard)

Portuguese Water Dog
















Family Dog




15+ inches

17-23 inches


40-70 pounds

35-60 pounds


Average $600-$1500

Average $750-$2000





10-18 years

11-13 years

Coat Colors

White, Black, Brown, Gray, Blue, Apricot, Silver, Red, Cream

Black, Brown, White


Super easy — Highly intelligent and can learn tricks and commands quickly.

Very easy — Eager to please owners, will quickly learn to obey commands.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle — The Breeds

Portuguese Water Dog

portuguese water dog vs poodle shedding.

Portuguese Water Dogs originated from the Algarve region of Portugal. These adventurous canines were bred to be a fisherman’s best friend. The Portie has been used over the years to help fishermen complete their tasks — herding fish into waiting nets, finding lost tackle, and retrieving broken nets.

To help them with all their important sea-bound duties, Portuguese Water Dogs have webbed feet. These expert swimmers love to be outdoors and working, and their high intelligence means they can be easily trained.

Is the Portuguese Water Dog for Me?

This is the breed for you if you love spending time outdoors, ideally around water, and have an adventurous side to match your Portie’s. 

Portuguese Water Dogs love to play and are as affectionate as they are active. If you want a loyal and fun-loving pooch, a Portie could be your perfect canine companion. These dogs are also known to get on well with children and will adapt to new people and animals if socialized from a young age. 

The Portie is far from a quiet lap dog. Instead, this breed is a bundle of energy with a gorgeous coat.


  • Hypoallergenic coat. 
  • Affectionate and fun-loving personality. 
  • Easy to train. 


  • High-maintenance grooming needs. 
  • Can misbehave if not exercised enough. 
  • Needs long daily walks.
are poodles water dogs.

Everyone knows a Poodle when they see one, with their noble posture and a coat full of tight curls. This breed comes in three different sizes: standard, miniature, and toy. The Standard Poodle is the largest variety, although all the sizes have a strong, athletic body and an air of importance about them. 

It’s thought that Poodles originated in Germany, where they were used during hunting to retrieve game that had landed in the water.

Poodles are extremely intelligent — they’re one of the smartest dog breeds. They’re also playful and friendly and a popular choice among families. 

Thanks to their temperament and gorgeous coat, Poodles are often used to breed hybrid dogs, including the Maltipoo, Cavapoo, and Labradoodle

Is the Poodle for Me?

Poodles make excellent pets and can even be easily trained by first-time dog owners. What’s more, if you love walking and getting out in nature, the Poodle can be an excellent companion on your daily strolls. 

For a show dog, you can’t go wrong with this breed. Their curly coat can be clipped into all types of shapes and styles, and they’re quick to learn new tricks and skills. 

Poodles can make loyal and loving family dogs and are known to get on well with children. However, Poodles are too friendly to be effective guard dogs, but they’re territorial and will bark at strangers or a knock at the door. They may not be aggressive, but they’re always alert and want to protect their family. 


  • Popular show breed. 
  • Hypoallergenic coat. 
  • One of the most intelligent dog breeds.


  • Daily brushing is a must. 
  • Requires an hour (minimum) of exercise every day. 
  • Needs plenty of human interaction and mental stimulation.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle Size

The Portuguese Water Dog and the Standard Poodle are both classified as medium-sized breeds, but are they the same size?

When comparing a full grown Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle, their height and weight are in a similar range. 

Portuguese Water Dog

Male Portuguese Water Dogs can grow up to 20 to 23 inches and weigh approximately 42 to 60 pounds. The females are slightly smaller, with a height range of 17 to 21 inches and weighing between 35 and 50 pounds. 


The Standard Poodle grows to around 15 inches but can be taller. The females will weigh around 40 to 50 pounds, and the males weigh between 60 and 70 pounds. 

In summary:

While the Standard Poodle may be the slightly heavier breed, the Portuguese Water Dog is often taller.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle Temperament

Here is a quick round-up of these two dogs’ temperaments and any differences that there may be.

Portuguese Water Dog

The Portuguese Water Dog is a breed full of energy, thanks to their working dog heritage. The Portie enjoys being physically and mentally stimulated, they love to spend time outdoors and enjoy being showered in affection by their owners. 

Porties can be cautious of strangers due to their watchdog instincts. Plus, they need plenty of socialization to help welcoming and relaxed behavior. 


Poodles are friendly and also lively dogs. They may bark when strangers enter your home but will soon adapt to new people and animals. However, to help your dog manage their territorial instincts, you’ll need to socialize them early on in puppyhood. 

If you have children, you’ll be pleased to hear that Poodles are gentle with young humans and make excellent family dogs. Poodles love to play and enjoy plenty of mental stimulation. 

Poodles are happiest when they’re receiving plenty of interaction and affection. 

To sum it up:

Both the Poodle and Portuguese Water Dog are loyal and loving towards their owners. However, the Poodle tends to be more accepting and adaptable when in the company of strangers.

portuguese water dog vs poodle temperament.

Portuguese Water Dog or Poodle — Training

Some breeds pick up new tricks faster than others. But how do these two fare when it comes to training?

Portuguese Water Dog

Porties are highly trainable. These dogs have historically needed to learn several different commands as working dogs. 

The Portuguese Water Dog will not take long to learn new commands and their people-pleasing attitude makes training an enjoyable experience for both. However, be warned, Porties can be too clever, outsmarting you during training and somehow ending up being the one in charge!


Poodles are considered one of the easiest dog breeds to train. They have a natural desire to please their owners. Their intelligence also means they can pick up new commands quickly, and know how to behave appropriately. 

You’ll need to be consistent with your methods when training your Poodle, and should begin as soon as you bring your puppy home. With their athletic physique and clever minds, Poodles can be trained to take part in agility games and canine sports, and will enjoy learning new tricks to show off.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle Price

Now, let’s get down to business — money. How much can you expect to pay for either breed?

Portuguese Water Dog

On average, Portuguese Water Dogs can cost anywhere between $750 and $2000. 


The cost of a Standard Poodle ranges anywhere from $600 to $1500. If you would prefer a Toy or Miniature Poodle, these are usually more expensive and can cost over $2000 per puppy from certain breeders. 

In short:

While there is a crossover in price, chances are the Portie is going to hit your pocket harder than the Poodle.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle Shedding

If you have dog allergies, finding a hypoallergenic dog breed can help you live alongside a furry friend in harmony. Both the Portuguese Water Dog and Poodle share this hypoallergenic status, and they can make the best bow-wow buddies for allergy sufferers. 

Portuguese Water Dog

The Portuguese Water Dog doesn’t have an undercoat, instead, they have a long coat made up of either tight curls or long waves. These dogs are very low shedders and will not cover your home in fur. 

Their coat can be black, white, brown, or a combination of all three. While they don’t really shed, they do need lots of brushing, we’ll talk more about this later.


Poodles are very similar to Porties when it comes to shedding. These dogs have a coat made up of tight curls and no undercoat. Any shed hair gets caught up in the tight curls, saving your soft furnishings from a layer of fluff and keeping your allergy symptoms at bay. 

This breed also comes in an array of colors, ranging from black to gray, to white, and apricot. Their coat is their most defining feature, and the fact that it’s hypoallergenic makes them even more attractive. 

In summary:

This one’s a tie — if you have dog allergies, either breed will be a suitable choice.

Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle — Grooming Requirements

With both the Portuguese Water Dog and Poodle being hypoallergenic, you would be forgiven for thinking that these dogs don’t need much grooming. However, the opposite is true!


Poodles need their thick and curly coat to be brushed every single day. This is needed to prevent knots and tangles from developing in their tight curls. Use a soft brush during your grooming sessions, and be sure to introduce your Poodle to brushing when they’re a young puppy. 

Portuguese Water Dogs also need to be brushed every day to stop their dense coats from becoming matted. 


Your Poodle will need a trip to the groomers every six weeks or so to have their coat trimmed and styled if that’s your preference. Popular styles for Poodles include the teddy bear cut, cupcake cut, summer cut, and Dutch cut. 

The Portie will need their coat trimmed around once a month. There are a few cuts that your Portie could carry off:

  • The lion clip — hindquarters and muzzle are clipped short, almost to the skin.
  • The retriever clip — entire body is trimmed to around 1-inch in length.

Regular coat cuts will stop the ends from becoming knotted and keep their coat and curls at a much more manageable length. 


Porties need to be bathed every month or two to keep their coat in top condition. However, Poodles need bathing around once every 3 weeks. This is thought to be the best way to keep their fur and skin healthy and looking their best. 


Dental care is important for all dog breeds. Porties and Poodles will need their teeth brushed several times a week with a veterinarian-approved canine toothpaste.

which is better portuguese water dog or poodle.

Poodle vs Portuguese Water Dog — Exercise

All dogs need exercise, but if you choose an athletic breed like the Portuguese Water Dog or Poodle — anticipate long daily walks. 

Portuguese Water Dog

As working dogs, Portuguese Water Dogs thrive on physical activity in the great outdoors. You’ll need to walk your Portie for at least 40 minutes a day, the longer the walk, the better. With their webbed feet and affinity for the water, your Portie will love the opportunity to swim and play in the sea, ponds, or rivers. 


You may be wondering, do Poodles like water too? Just like the Portie, Poodles are great swimmers and enjoy a splash around in the water. Poodles also need plenty of exercise, they should be walked for at least one hour every day. 

Poodles love to play, and while some owners choose walkies to meet their exercise needs, playing games in the yard at home also counts.


These medium-sized, hypoallergenic dogs love long walks and being in the water. However, Porties need slightly less exercise and Poodles are slightly more open toward strangers. 

So, when weighing up Portuguese Water Dog vs Poodle, one thing is certain — you’re going to have an affectionate and loyal pooch on your hands. Both these dogs will love to spend time in your company, playing and having fun.

Poodle vs Portuguese Water Dog FAQs

Do Poodles Like Water?

If you’ve been wondering, are Poodles water dogs? The answer is yes! Poodles were originally used to retrieve game from ponds and rivers, and they’re excellent swimmers. 

What Is a Portuguese Water Dog and Poodle Mix Called?

The Portidoodle. 

What Kind of Coat Does a Poodle Have?

Poodles have a single coat, rather than a coat consisting of a soft undercoat and an outer coat. It’s made up of tight curls and doesn’t shed. Poodles are hypoallergenic and a popular allergy-friendly breed. 

Is Poodle Fur Waterproof?

Yes, a Poodle’s single coat of curls is waterproof. You don’t have to worry about your Poodle getting wet, but you will need to regularly cut your dog’s coat to keep their curls under control.

Are Poodles a Good Family Pet?

Yes. These dogs are fun-loving and energetic and enjoy spending lots of time with humans. Poodles get on well with children and are affectionate and loyal dogs.

Is a Portuguese Water Dog a Good First Dog?

As long as you’re aware of the exercise needs of this breed and are an active person or family, the Portie will make a great dog for first-time owners.

Are Poodles Descended From Portuguese Water Dogs?

Both these breeds are descendants of the same Eastern European breed, but this breed is no longer around. However, history books tell us Poodles originate from Germany and Portuguese Water Dogs, from, you guessed it — Portugal.