Bichon Poo, Also known as a Poochon or a Bichpoo, is a designer dog that’s created by crossing the Bichon Frise and the Poodle. The aim of this is to meld the best characteristics of these two pure breeds. The result of this crossbreeding is a small and sturdy bundle of joy that’s very energetic, friendly, and snuggle-worthy.
The Bichon Frise, which is one of the two pure breeds used to create the Bichpoo, is fluffy and small, and their name means ‘curly lap dog’. The poodle, which is the other purebred parent, is very skillful and intelligent and can take part in dog competitions. Mix this two together and you get an adorable and intelligent dog that you’ll want to cuddle with all day.
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The history and origin of most hybrids are largely unknown because they are relatively modern. The easiest way to piece together their story is to learn more about the history of the two breeds used to make the dog.
The Bichon Frise can trace their roots back to the Mediterranean. They made their way around the world and became a favorite among Italian nobility in the 1300s. By the 1500s, they were owned and treasured by the French.
They became very popular in the Canary Islands around the 15th and 16th centuries. However, their popularity waned in the 1800s, and there were efforts to restabilize the breed after World War I.
Poodles were very popular in Germany, Spain, and France, and were skilled in sniffing out a type of mushroom known as truffles. Although they were considered a regal or fancy companion pet, they are quite skilled at canine sports and love spending time outdoors. There are three different types of poodles, namely standard, toy, and miniature.
The Bichon Poo is thought to have originated in Australia in the late 1990s. They were bred for families that want an active and robust dog that does not shed and that plays well with children.
A cross between a purebred Poodle and a purebred Bichon Frise results in a first-generation Bichpoo. First generation hybrids are usually a lot healthier than both of their parents.
In fact, some of the health problems that affect their parents, such as Addison’s disease for Poodles and liver shunts for Bichon Frise, may bypass first-generation Bichpoo pups entirely.
A cross between two first-generation hybrids results in a second-generation Bichpoo. Second generation hybrids are also a result of a mix between one first-generation hybrid and a pure breed Poodle or Bichon Frise.
Second-generation Bichpoos are not as healthy as their first-generation counterparts. Furthermore, the litter is likely to have more variety in terms of physical and behavioral characteristics, especially if both parents are first-generation hybrids as opposed to purebreds.
A cross between two second-generation hybrids results in a third-generation Bichpoo. Most breeders do not offer them, as the issues present in second-generation hybrids are often more accentuated in the third generation.
Any cross after the third generation is not considered a hybrid.
Your best bet is to get a first-generation hybrid as they are stronger and more robust. This can be hard, as there is no visible distinguishing factor between the first and the second generations. Therefore, it’s better to work with a reputable breeder to ensure you get the first-generation hybrid you want.
Since Bichon Poos are hybrids, they are not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). For the American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC) to recognize a Poochon, he or she must be a first-generation cross breed between a purebred Toy or Miniature Poodle and a purebred Bichon Frise.
This direct lineage is a requirement by the ACHC, which insists that all hybrid dogs must be products of two purebreds that are registered by the AKC.
The Designer Dogs Kennel Club recognizes these dogs under the name Poochon, the International Designer Canine Registry recognizes them under the names Bichpoo or Poochon, and the Designer Breed Registry recognizes them under the Poochon name.
The weight of Bichon Poo is determined by whether the Poodle side of the family was Toy or Miniature. If one of the parents was a Toy Poodle, the Poochon will weigh between 6 and 12 pounds. If the parent was a Miniature Poodle, the Bichpoo can weight up to 18 pounds.
The size of a Bichon Poo varies, especially because Poodles come in three different sizes, namely, small, medium, and large. On average, a Poochon can stand at about 9 to 14 inches tall.
Crossbreeds are like a lottery and their physical and behavioral characteristics can be hard to predict. This is because the hybrid can inherit more or fewer traits from either parent. Furthermore, if both parents are not purebreds, the offsprings will have even more variable physical and behavioral characteristics.
Even immediate siblings can have a variety of looks and colors. First generation Poochons tend to inherit more of the solid colors as opposed to patterns. With every subsequent generation and crossing, patterns may develop.
Both the Bichon Frise and the Poodle are small animals, so Bichpoos do not grow very big. The Bichpoos may inherit the Bichon Frise’s soft and wavy coat or the Poodle’s curly coat. However, since both purebreds are non-shedding, The Bichpoo’s coat does not shed and is hypoallergenic, making this hybrid ideal for people who suffer from allergies. The coat color often varies depending on the colors of the parents, but the most common ones are apricot, grey, white, cream, brown, and light shades of red.
Both Poodles and Bichon Frise contribute their pointed muzzle and fluffy ears. Bichon Poos may get the black nose and dark eyes of the Bichon Frise or the dark or amber, oval-shaped eyes of the Poodle. They may have tails that hang over their back and are plumed. Poochons have a very sweet facial expression, and often medium-length ears, a medium muzzle, rounded skull, and a wider face than a Poodle. Poochons also have a very fuzzy face if their coat is not clipped. The Bichon Poos’ physical characteristics make them ideal for families that want a small, fuzzy, and cuddly dog.
Both Poodles and Bichon Frises are very active dogs. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the Bichon Poo is very active as well. The Bichon Poo is also very intelligent, as both his parents, especially the Poodle, is considered in the top quartile of intelligent dog breeds. This makes Poochons very quick learners, and house training will be a breeze.
Bich-poos are very friendly, eager to please, and family-oriented. They are quite adaptable when it comes to living with other animals, making them ideal for families that already have other pets. They are also very alert and can make great watchdogs. They will bark to let you know that someone is at the door. However, they are also prone to excessive barking, so you need to downplay this personality trait when your pooch is still young and learning socialization skills.
Because of their friendly nature, Bichon Poos easily bond with their owners. They are high-spirited, sweet-natured, and loyal, and tend to follow people around. They also like to impress their owners by doing tricks. However, they can get too attached to their owners and become attention-seekers when spoiled.
Bichon Poos’ intelligence and activeness means they need to get regular mental and physical stimulation. This is because they become very easily bored when left with nothing to do for long periods of time, especially if they inherited the Poodle’s sporty traits. They also tend to get nervous in stressful situations or when left alone for long periods of time.
These dogs fit well in homes with older children or with children they have known since they were puppies. However, if you have small children, ensure they handle the dog with care, as he can easily get hurt when dropped or stepped on.
The Bichon Poo has a life expectancy of between 12 and 18 years.
The Bichon Poo usually has a litter of four or five puppies.
Grooming and maintenance
Though Poochons do not shed, they still require a lot of maintenance. This is because their coats tangle very easily and require regular brushing. Some of the steps to take to ensure your Bichpoo is well taken care of include:
- Brush your Bichpoo daily to prevent matting and tangling. This is because preventing matting is a lot less painful than removing it. It is important to get your puppy used to the brushing as early as possible. Use slicker brushes on puppies, but be careful not to scratch their delicate skin with the bristles.
- Bathe and shampoo your Poochon at least once a month with puppy shampoo.
- Brush your Bichpoo’s teeth at least once a week. Like most small dogs, Bichpoos are prone to dental disease. Brushing their teeth regular prevents the buildup of tartar and plaque. This prevents serious health problems, as the bacteria on the dog’s gumline can enter his bloodstream.
- Play with your dog’s feet and ears regularly. This is because your dog needs regular grooming, and playing with her helps her get used to being touched in areas that she finds uncomfortable when she goes to the groomers. Touching her ears and feet helps her get used to nail clippings and ear cleanings.
- Grooming is best done by a professional. This is because the fur around the eyes must be trimmed regularly. Only a trained professional can perform such an intricate task properly without harming your dog.
- Your dog’s nails need to be clipped at least twice every month. You will know your dog needs clipping if their nails make a clicking sound on the floor when they walk.
- Ears should be cleaned at least once a week, as this hybrid is very prone to ear infections. Because of the risk of allergies, it is important to get your pooch’s skin checked regularly by a veterinarian. Cleaning the eyes and keeping the ears dry are also important grooming requirements.
- If your Poochon spends a lot of time outside, it is important to administer heartworm preventative once every month. This helps prevent heartworm disease on the off chance that a heartworm-carrying mosquito bites him when he is outside.
Food and diet
These dogs usually have a lot of energy. Therefore, they should be given small, frequent meals throughout the day. Because most small dogs are prone to dental issues, dry foods and treats are best. Do not give Poochons too much food, as they are prone to obesity.
You should give Poochons high-quality, all-natural foods to reduce the risk of allergies, which is a health concern that plagues both Poodles and Bichons. Visit a reputable pet store to get a good selection of quality foods for Bichon Poos.
Poochons are intelligent and grasp new commands very quickly and easily, making them a delight to train. They respond very well to praise and positive reinforcements but will detach if yelled at. The best way to get an enjoyable training session is to be kind and gentle to your dog. Even if you think your dog needs training, you will get the best results if the dog wants to participate in the training.
The Bichpoo is prone to small dog syndrome where he thinks he is the boss of the house. This is why obedience training is important. Establish your dominance and be the pack leader. Do not treat your Poochon like a small baby, or he will become demanding and stubborn.
Socialization training is also very important for small dogs, as they risk becoming nervous and timid. To ensure your dog is confident, secure, and great with children, interact with your neighbors and their pets, or enroll your Poochon in a puppy kindergarten. Always note that a mentally and emotionally healthy puppy is a happy puppy.
Crate training works best when house training your Poochon as they like to go to the toilet away from where they sleep. However, make sure you open the crate and let your pup out as soon as possible.
Make training sessions short, and space sessions out to multiple times in a day. Do not repeat the same command over and over. Poochons love mental stimulation and challenges as these ensure they do not get bored. This hybrid does not respond well to heavy-handed or harsh training methods. For best results, be firm, fair, patient, and consistent.
Activity or exercise requirements
The Bichon Poo is not a couch potato and can be as energetic, active, and feisty as its size allows him to be. However, because of his small size, moderate exercise tends to tire him out quickly. These dogs enjoy lots of play time to burn off extra energy, and they need at least 30 minutes of activity each day to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.
If you do not have a yard, take your pooch out for walks at least once a day. You should also keep a toy or two around the house for your dog to play with. If your Poochon becomes destructive and starts barking excessively, chewing everything in sight, or whining, consider increasing the amount of exercise time.
Another characteristic of this dog is that he tends to have sudden outbursts of energy. Poochons may start running fast around the house without any warning, but this random energy is short-lived, and often ends as abruptly as it starts. This is not something that should concern you, as it is a very common trait among Poochons.
Poochons are great indoor pets and can thrive in cities and apartments. However, they do best in homes with fenced yards where they can enjoy some off-leash play time. If you live in an apartment, you have to walk your dog more than once every day and find a suitable doggie park where he can get some extra playtime.
First generation Bichon Poo do not have the health problems that affect their parents. However, it is always important to know the health issues that affect the parent breeds in order to know what problems to watch out for in your dog. Poodles are susceptible to progressive retinal atrophy, skin allergies, gastric torsion volvulus, and cataracts. Bichon Frises are susceptible to liver problems.
Bich-poos are prone to ear infections if their ears are not dried within minutes of getting wet. Like other small animals. Bich-poos can suffer fractures when dropped from any height. Therefore, it is important to supervise your young kids whenever they play with this small dog.
To ensure you get bichon poo with lower health risks, find responsible breeders who only breed first-generation hybrids. It is also important to ask for the medical records of your puppy’s parents to know which issues they may have. Your Bichpoo should also get occasional physical examinations, thyroid tests, blood tests, and eye tests to ensure he is healthy.
What’s good about ’em: Bichon Poo
- They are very small but sturdy
- They are good with children and other pets
- They are great alert watchdogs but are not aggressive
- They are very playful and fun to hang out with
- They have hypoallergenic coats that don’t shed. This makes them great for allergy sufferers
What’s bad about ’em:Bichon Poo
- They are prone to excessive barking
- They require frequent clipping, making them harder to care for
- They get very attached to the owner and experience separation anxiety when left alone. Separation anxiety in Poochons is characterized by a lot of whining and destructive behavior.
- They can be very shy when not socialized enough
Bichon Poo is very kind, intelligent, active, and friendly. They are a great dog to bond and play with. However, they require a lot of maintenance and exercise. It is important to take these factors into consideration before deciding to get this adorable pooch.