Westie vs Poodle: Which Is Right for You?

When it comes to choosing the right dog for your home, you know there are endless options. A pet is a lifetime commitment, so you need to ensure you pick one that meets your needs now and in the future. We have tackled the Westie vs Poodle debate to help you see the similarities and differences.

If you’ve already narrowed it down to one of these two dogs, it can be challenging to make that final decision. Thus, we will talk about the differences in height and weight, as well as their characteristics. That way, you can make an informed decision.

Westie vs Poodle: A Quick Comparison

The poodle is from Germany, while the Westie (West Highland White Terrier) is from the UK. You’ll find that the poodle grows up to six inches higher than the Westie and weighs up to 53 pounds more, as well. Both animals live about the same length of time, which is up to 15 years.

Of course, these pets could produce up to eight puppies at one time, with four being the average. You may choose to have your furry friend spayed or neutered to prevent this from happening.

Some owners want a maintenance-free pet, and neither of these breeds is ideal for that. Both of them require high maintenance and upkeep, but that also means these purebred animals can be used as show dogs.

Those who love Westies more than anything are likely to desire one of their own. You may also want to find appropriate gifts that you can give to yourself, such as a robot vacuum to pick up all the dog hair.

What Is a Westie?

Most people would describe the West Highland White Terrier as a large dog in a small body. It has a big heart and is always affectionate to its owners. Though many people use them as therapy dogs, they aren’t officially recognized as one.

This means that you can get comfort from them, but they aren’t likely to be classified as a therapy animal. Regardless, they will cheer you up when you’re down because they are highly energetic and boisterously good fun.

Even if the Westie barks a lot, it can still be suitable in an apartment-style living arrangement. You will need to train them, and it should be done at an early age. Often, owners choose to hire a professional trainer to make the process easier while still performing basic obedience training at home.

Training is considered easy because they listen well and will do what you want with time. However, it’s best to have a gentle hand when teaching them. They don’t respond well to yelling or bonking the nose like some dogs might.

What Is a Poodle?

Poodles tend to live a luxury lifestyle nowadays, but they are bred to work. These animals are quite intelligent and are known as excellent water retrievers. They often hunt waterfowl with high energy levels.

Also, the poodle comes from “Pudel,” a German word that means “splash in the water.” Often poodles have a specific haircut, which allows them to swim more easily. The hair remains long at the joints and around their organs to protect them in cold water.

Since the poodle has a great personality, they make good companions and are very obedient. They will remember everything they’ve learned, so it’s best to train them early.

That said, the poodle doesn’t like to be left alone for extended periods. It would much rather play games with its owner and other dogs. Make sure you factor this into your decision, as your lifestyle will directly impact theirs.

Possible Health Issues Associated with These Breeds

The Westie suffers from severe allergies, which all cause itchy skin. It’s common in all terrier breeds, but it tends to show more in this one. Your veterinarian is likely to recommend creams, lotions, and allergy pills for your dog.

Westies can also suffer from digestive issues, such as IBD and pancreatitis. Joint problems are also possible as they get older. These can include arthritis and fractures, as well as hip dysplasia and lose knees.

Poodles may have a good chance of developing eye diseases, such as cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy. They also have issues with allergies, tumors, and cancer. Therefore, it is best to go to the veterinarian for routine checkups.

Most of the time, poodles don’t shed, but if they do develop allergies, it could cause excessive shedding. It’s important to keep them healthy and take care of illness and infection quickly.

Characteristics of the Westie

Though the Westie is friendly with anyone who poses no danger to them, it’s not a good idea to leave them alone with children. Sometimes, a child might try to pull their tail or bite because they’re too young to understand. This could cause the dog to retaliate.

Since West Highland White Terriers are hunting dogs, they like to chase rabbits, squirrels, and rodents. Often, they will kill them and bring them to you as a surprise.

You’ll find that these animals can work well in apartments, but they do enjoy barking extensively, so this needs to be trained out of them. That way, they will only do so when they sense danger or newcomers to the home.

The one caveat is that they don’t like being alone for long periods. It’s best if you have someone who is home all or most of the time. Nonetheless, they may still fare well if you walk them before you leave.

Characteristics of the Poodle

Often, poodles make great companions and work well with children, but it is best to supervise your kids around the dog, especially when they are both young. This can prevent scratches and bites.

Poodles are specialists in water-bird hunting and can swim well. Hence, you may want to have a water source nearby or install a pool so that they can swim. You’ll also find that these animals are quite intelligent, just like humans.

If you live in an apartment, poodles are well-suited to that lifestyle, but like the Westie, they don’t like being alone for long periods. As such, you should plan to spend a lot of time with them before leaving for work.

Since they learn quickly, they will learn good and bad habits and won’t forget them easily. You should work hard to keep bad habits from forming when they are younger.


We have talked extensively about the Westie vs Poodle to help you understand each breed a little better. This, in turn, will help you make the right choice for your lifestyle and home.

You can easily see that these dogs have similarities in their characteristics, but they are also quite different. We believe the Westie is the best choice because it is smaller. To make sure you take care of them well, you should read our pieces of advice and recommended products to use.

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