Poodles are renowned for their keen intelligence and loyal disposition, but what the breed is perhaps best known for is its luxurious, curly fur. While black is the most common Poodle color, chocolate varieties are also popular among dog owners.
are chocolate poodles rare
Are Chocolate Poodles rare?
Some Poodle owners are surprised to find that their puppy’s chocolate coat starts to change color as it ages. Most of the time, Poodles don’t stay the exact same color their whole life. The color and even pattern of a young chocolate Poodle’s coat can be entirely different in maturity.
If you’re looking for a chocolate Poodle, then you’re in luck—this breed is usually easy to find or request from breeders. Here, I’m going to discuss how rare chocolate Poodles are and how you can expect to see their coats change with time.
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Table of Contents
What Colors do Poodles Come in?
Chocolate color Poodle puppies.
Poodles come in a wide variety of colors based on their genetic makeup. The color of a pup’s parents can play a strong role in their offspring’s appearance, but hidden recessive genes can make puppies look entirely different from Mom and Dad. The most common poodle colors include:
Cafe Au Lait
The gene for brown fur is recessive in Poodles, meaning that a puppy must receive a copy from each parent for the color to show. Otherwise, offspring will display the dominant color, which is often black.
Some Poodles may end up inheriting a variety of colors thanks to their genetic background. Some poodles come in spotted or merled varieties, while others are patterned or tricolored.
The most common poodle colors include black, chocolate, and white, while the three rarest colors include apricot, red, and cream. The rarer the color, the harder it is to find a breeder with available puppies, making chocolate a good choice for dog owners who want a more immediate placement.
Can a Chocolate Poodle’s Coat Change Color?
best brush for poodle coats
A woman brushing a chocolate color Poodle
Most Poodle owners will probably notice that their puppy’s soft, shiny, and vibrant coat gets replaced over time with coarser, duller fur. This is a completely natural process that happens in plenty of show breeds, and it should be no cause for concern.
Most Poodles grow lighter in color with time, including chocolate varieties. It usually takes around two to three years for a puppy’s adult color to fully emerge. Even then, they may grow lighter or grayer as they mature.
Whether your Poodle is chocolate, gray, or any color in between, you’re likely to see color changes in its coat at some point. There are a couple of reasons why a poodle’s coat might change color after puppyhood.
(Learn about why black Poodles fade)
One of the main reasons chocolate poodles lighten, or “clear,” as they grow older is thanks to genetics. If a puppy’s parents have fur that clears, they likely will too. Chocolate poodles often clear from a deep brown to a light, almost white gold.
chocolate toy poodle eats food from a bowl
A chocolate Toy Poodle eating from a ceramic bowl
Just like us, dogs can start to sprout gray hairs with age. Brown coloration may fade to gray or white in mature poodles, especially around the nose, chin, and eyes. Hair may also grow more coarse or wiry with time.
While fur changes are most often completely natural in poodles, environmental damage can lead to color shifts in some cases. Excessive exposure to UV radiation is a common cause of lightening in poodle fur.
It’s important to protect your dog against the sun during walks using protective gear such as hats, goggles, shirts, and bodysuits. You can also find specialized pet sunscreens to protect skin and fur.
Harsh shampoos may lead to both color and texture changes in your poodle’s fur. It’s important to always opt for products that use safe, natural ingredients. Try to steer clear of anything with toxic components, such as mineral oils, parabens, polysorbates, and more.