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Home > Dogs > Maltipoo vs Toy Poodle: The Differences (With Pictures)

Maltipoo vs Toy Poodle: The Differences (With Pictures)

Maltipoo vs Toy Poodle

The Maltipoo is a cross-breed of a Maltese and a Miniature or Toy Poodle. The Toy Poodle is a purebred, and the Maltipoo is considered a “designer breed.” The differences between the two range from training and exercise requirements to grooming needs. For instance, the Maltipoo and Toy Poodle are both highly trainable, but one of the two breeds requires a strong pack leader to avoid behavioral issues.

Let’s look at the two breeds to determine what characteristics, personality traits, and other things you like or may find undesirable in a pet. Whether you are a senior looking for companionship, a parent that wants a pet for their children, or an individual looking for a show dog, this comparison will provide you with valuable information. Hopefully, you and your family will be enjoying your new pet very soon.


Visual Differences

Maltipoo vs Toy Poodle
Image Credit: Left – Maltipoo (OlgaOvcharenko, Shutterstock), Right – Toy Poodle (bongbabyhousevn, Pixabay)

At a Glance

  • Average height: 8–14 inches
  • Average weight: 5–20 pounds
  • Lifespan: 10–13 years
  • Exercise: Minimum of one hour a day
  • Grooming needs: Average
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Other Pet Friendly: Yes
  • Trainability: Highly trainable, intelligent
Toy Poodle
  • Average height: Up to 10 inches
  • Average weight: 4–6 pounds
  • Lifespan: 10–18 years
  • Exercise Needs: Low
  • Grooming Needs: Medium to high
  • Family-friendly: Yes
  • Other pet-friendly: Yes
  • Trainability: Highly trainable, eager to please, intelligent


Maltipoo Overview

Maltipoo sitting on the grass
Image Credit: 350543, Pixabay

The Maltipoo is a hybrid that is the result of breeding a Miniature or Toy Poodle and a Maltese. The breed is playful and affectionate which makes them the perfect pet for active households. Whether you are a first-time pet owner or have experience owning a dog, a Maltipoo is an ideal pet.

The breed makes an excellent companion for seniors and kids alike. The poodle mix is an intelligent dog that is easy to train and loves spending time with their humans and other pets too.

The Maltipoo is a small dog with a coat that is thick and can be curly or wavy. Although the coat is thick, the Maltipoo needs to be protected from extreme heat and cold. In the summer months they require shade when they are playing in the yard. In the winter, they will enjoy a short 15-minute walk, preferably with a coat or sweater.

Personality / Character

A Maltipoo pup has a sweet, loving personality and they love to cuddle and get showered with attention. They have a calm personality and a playful nature. Whether you are a senior looking for a calm and cuddly pet or have a home filled with children and activity, a Maltipoo will quickly settle into your home life. The breed loves attention and will keep their owner entertained with their playful antics and show of love and attention.

Since Maltipoos are a social breed, they are accepting of visitors and get along well with other pets too. They are known to bark when meeting a stranger or other dog, however.


The Maltipoo is an adorable small breed dog with a soft and wavy coat. The face is round with a button like nose and round dark eyes. These facial features are why they continue to look like puppies even as adults.

The coat of a Maltipoo can come in a variety of colors like a toy poodle. The typical coat of a Maltipoo can be fawn, silver, white, brown, cream, and apricot. The colors are usually muted, however due to the white genes of the Maltese. Although there are Maltipoos with red, brown, and black coats, they are rare colors for the breed.

Maltipoo dog posing isolated over dark vintage background
Image Credit: Master1305, Shutterstock


The Maltipoo breed is a highly intelligent dog that is easy to train. The breed is eager to please and can make an excellent therapy or emotional support dog as well as an awesome pet.

Since they do tend to be vocal, it is important to teach them when they are pups not to bark.

The positive reinforcement sessions should be a fun bonding experience between you and your maltipoo. You can motivate them to learn and respond to commands by giving them treats and plenty of praise.

Health & Care

Since Maltipoos are a small breed and are not considered purebreds, they tend to have less health issues than toy poodles or large breed dogs. Common issues tend to be age related and include cataracts, arthritis, and dental problems. Like toy poodles, they are also susceptible to a collapsed trachea. To help prevent damage to your pet’s trachea, consider using a harness rather than a traditional collar.

Due to the social nature of this breed, they can experience anxiety if they are left alone or separated from their loved ones for a long time.

As with any pet, genetics and routine healthcare among other things can affect the health and lifespan of your Maltipoo. So, if you are not getting your pet from a rescue, be sure to purchase your Maltipoo from a reputable breeder.

Image Credit: Rob Hainer, Shutterstock

Suitable for:

If you have a household with children and other pets, the Maltipoo will fit in fine. The dog has the energy to keep up with the daily activities in a busy household and has a personality that will go along with strangers and other dogs too.

The calm and affectionate nature of the Maltipoo also makes it a good match for one person households and seniors. They do not do well being left alone for prolonged periods, however.


Toy Poodle Overview

Toy Poodle Walking
Image Credit: FROGGYTUFF, Pixabay

The Toy Poodle is a purebred toy breed that originated from the standard poodle. They are intelligent, sweet, and good with children and other pets. They require a strong pack leader, however. Toy poodles love people and respond well to training. They are a friendly breed that needs to be highly socialized. Toy poodles love to be with people, but they can be protective of their owners. In addition to being socialized, toy poodles require exercise and stimulation to prevent them from becoming timid and strung out.

Toy poodles are an excellent breed for individuals that live in an apartment in the city or families that live in the country. They enjoy walks, cuddling on the couch and frolicking in the yard.

Pet owners that are looking for a show dog will find the toy poodle to be an excellent choice also. They are talented canines that are known for competing in agility, obedience, retrieving, watchdog, and doing tricks.

Personality / Character

Toy Poodles are energetic and intelligent dogs that are easy to train. They are a sweet and happy breed that like to entertain and delight their audience. They get along well with other dogs and enjoy socializing with them.

If you own a Toy Poodle, you will need to lead the pack, however. Toy Poodles will develop small dog syndrome if it is not given the proper boundaries and expected to follow the rules. If allowed to lead the pack, the toy poodle may engage in negative behaviors like snapping, demanding, growling, and guarding.

In addition, they can become iffy with children and strangers. Left to be the boss can make them nervous, sensitive, and timid with strangers. Since these are not typical traits of the Toy Poodle, they do best with owners that are consistent and firm pack leaders.


Toy Poodles that have a confident pack leader that provides them with mental and physical exercise are trustworthy and mentally stable. While Toy Poodles like to play and run around in the yard, they still need a daily walk to prevent behavioral issues.


Toy Poodles are highly intelligent and responsive to training. They require an owner that is the leader of the pack. If they are not well trained, they should not be left alone with small children. They will do well, however, with older children that know how to be a pack leader. The breed is excellent in the show ring since it is talented, highly trainable, and intelligent. They can easily learn how to do tricks and competitive obedience among other things.

white toy poodle dog on a leash sits on a tile path in a city park during a walk
Image Credit: Kleo foto, Shutterstock

Health & Care

Some of the health problems that are common among Toy Poodles include diabetes, heart problems, epilepsy, slipped stifle, immune mediated hemolytic anemia (IMHA), progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), ear infections, runny eyes, and problems with their digestive tract.

PRA and cataracts can cause blindness in Toy Poodles, and they are susceptible to certain skin conditions that may be the result of improper use of clippers. It is also common for Toy Poodles to have allergies to the color reinforcers and shampoos used on their coats and brown poodles can gray prematurely.

Show Dogs

Owners that want to show their Toy Poodles should expect to spend time and money to have their dog groomed. Show dogs require extensive grooming that includes regular bathing and teeth scaling. The ears will need frequent monitoring for ear mites, wax, and infections. The hairs in the ear canal will also need to be removed.

To keep the Toy Poodles coat well groomed, the pet owner will need to have the coat groomed every six to eight weeks. For the show ring, there are several types of clips including the “Puppy Clip,” the “Lamb Clip,” and the “English Saddle,” to name a few.

White toy poodle dog on grass at sunset
Image Credit: NicoPerez, Shutterstock

Suitable for:

Toy Poodles are well suited for families and individuals. However, if you have small children you will need to be sure to be firm and consistent with your Toy Poodle, so it knows the rules and boundaries. For individuals that are looking for a dog to enter in the show ring, Toy Poodles are an excellent choice. The Breed is highly trainable and multi-talented, so they do well in the show ring.


Which Breed Is Right for You?

If you are looking for a small breed that is lovable and playful and will fit well into a home with small children, the Maltipoo is a good option. The breed is good with children, seniors, visitors, and other pets. The Maltipoo is energetic and will appreciate the activity of a busy home. They don’t do well in home where they are frequently left alone, however.

For individuals that live in an apartment in the city, seniors that live alone, or those looking for a show dog, the better option for you may be the Toy Poodle. Toy Poodles are highly intelligent and trainable but need a consistent pack leader. As a show dog, the Toy Poodle is a talented dog that can compete in agility, retrieval, watchdog, performing tricks, and competitive obedience.

The toy breed is not necessarily a bad match for an active family with smaller children, however. They just need to be well-trained, know their boundaries, and consistently follow the rules. Otherwise, they can exhibit bad behaviors like nipping, demanding, and growling.

See Also:

Featured Image Credit: Top – Maltipoo (marketlan, Shutterstock), Bottom- Toy Poodle (NDAB-Creativity, Shutterstock)

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