Maltipoo – The Ultimate Guide To The Maltese Poodle Mix

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Endearingly known as Maltipoo, this hybrid offspring of the Maltese and Toy or Miniature Poodle is a playful and people-loving companion.

Haven’t heard of this crossbreed yet? Maybe you did but it was referred to as Moodle. Regardless of what you call this fido, this is a dog that has a lot to offer.

If you want to know if the Poodle & Maltese mix is right for you, stay with us and keep scrolling.

A Summary Of The Maltipoo’s Top Characteristics

Maltipoo laying down outside

Before we take a trip down doggie lane, let’s talk about a few of the best-known character traits associated with this Maltese poodle mix.

You can look at a puppy’s parents to get clues about how the puppy could possibly turn out when it comes to appearance and temperament. But, it holds true that when you mix two breeds, you just don’t know exactly what you’re going to end up with.

Top 3 Advantages Of Owning A Maltipoo

  • These small dogs tend to be little smarties, hence they are easy to train and learn quickly.
  • They were bred to be hypoallergenic, but please know that NO dog breed is 100% hypoallergenic. All dogs shed skin cells and dander.
  • Maltipoos are sweethearts, with gentle and sensitive dispositions. Poodle mixes with a similarly affectionate nature include the Lhasa Poo and the Cavapoo.

Top 3 Disadvantages Of Maltipoos

  • There is a small guard-dog side to this breed. They like to alert the world to anything new and unfamiliar with a cacophony of barking.
  • Expect some grooming expenses with this breed. Daily brushing is required to prevent matted, tangled fur.
  • Maltipoos don’t like to be left alone. They’re known to develop separation anxiety.

Where Did The Maltipoo Come From?

The Maltipoo breed is evidence of the incredible art of dog breeding for specific traits, such as hypoallergenic characteristics. The first Maltipoo made its debut in the USA, although it’s unclear who was the first breeder to claim rights to this hybrid.

Since the dog mix hasn’t been around for long, the Maltipoo is not officially recognized. The North American Maltipoo Club and Registry exists for those who adore this peppy breed.

Crossbreeds can be tricky to navigate since it takes a few generations for a mixed-breed like a Maltipoo to develop predictable traits. That’s why we can learn a lot from their parents. Let’s look at the awesome breeds behind the genes of the Maltipoo.

Meet The Maltese: The Original Lap Dog

Close up of a Maltese

This ancient breed originates from the Central Mediterranean region of Malta (hence, the name Maltese). It’s hypoallergenic with long, snow white fur that can be wavy or curly, and it has no undercoat.

The Maltese were originally bred for its small size, as it grows up to 10 inches (25 cm) tall and weighs up to 10 lbs (5 kg).

Temperament-wise, these are companion dogs that love to be around humans. Lively and playful, they are known for their high level of intelligence. It’s important to introduce the Maltese to training and socialization at a young age to keep them stimulated.

Hands-on training also thwarts the development of destructive behaviors. Maltese dogs tend to exhibit signs of separation anxiety and can also be snappy with small children if not supervised.

Meet The Toy Poodle/Miniature Poodle: One Intelligent Canine

A poodle splashing in a stream

The Maltipoo gets half of its genetic makeup from the toy or miniature poodle, which was bred from the standard poodle. No matter if it’s a toy or mini, this breed is considered to be the same.

The poodle has been winning hearts since the 15th century. It became so popular in France that it was named as the country’s national dog.

There are some notable traits that this breed possesses. Besides its signature hypoallergenic curls, the poodle is recognized as the second most intelligent dog breed behind the Border collie.

Its sharp wit has made it a top contender in a variety of dog shows and competitions that test agility, obedience, tracking, herding, and even circus performing.

What Do Maltipoo Dogs Look Like?

Maltipoo puppy laying down

Lovers of small-sized pooches on the hunt for the perfect canine that retains its soft puppy looks into adulthood are eager to get a Maltipoo. It’s considered to be teacup or tiny toy in size, having come from small breed parents.

So, what makes the Maltipoo such a cutie? When you try to conjure up a realistic image of the Maltipoo, just think of when you were a child looking in the window of a toy shop.

There was that one stuffed animal with black button eyes, bear ears, and a plush tummy just begging to be squeezed.

Your eyes couldn’t leave that stuffed toy as you squished your ruddy cheeks and pudgy hands up against the shop window glass. It was, indeed, the most adorable little pet toy you had ever seen in your life, and either your parents or Santa Claus just had to get it for you.

Comparing a Maltipoo to your favorite stuffed animal is the best description I can give here. This breed was created for cuteness and cuddles.

As mentioned above, this breed can be 8 to 14 inches (20 to 35 cm) tall and weigh from 5 to 20 lbs (2 to 10 kg). The Maltipoo is a small and sensitive dog, and it is better suited for life indoors.

It boasts a fluffy coat that feels like wool and can be medium to long in length with a wavy texture. As mentioned above, both poodles and Maltese are low-shedding breeds, hence the Maltipoo being marketed as a hypoallergenic dog.

Low to the ground with floppy ears and a shaggy short tail, the Maltipoo’s coat comes in a melange of colors that can be cream, white, or silver.

Does The Maltipoo Have Any Health Issues?

When it comes to the health of the Maltipoo, it is a long-living breed with an estimated 10 to 13 years in lifespan.

Crossbreeds are thought to be hardy due to the mix of genes received from two different gene pools. But alas, with the Maltipoo, there are some health conditions to be aware of. The most common health problems are:

  • White shaker syndrome: This condition causes full body tremors in small dog breeds and is associated with high stress.
  • Epilepsy: Seizures from unknown causes.
  • Patellar luxation: A common knee joint abnormality found with teacup dogs where the kneecap dislocates from the thigh (femur).
  • Portosystemic shunt: A defect where an abnormality forms between the portal vein and another vein, causing blood to bypass the liver.
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA): The degeneration of the retina that can cause vision loss and even blindness.
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes disease: This disease causes the hip joint to slowly disintegrate spontaneously.

When visiting Maltipoo breeders, it’s always important to question them about the health history of the parents.

Check that both parents have health clearances from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals for their patellae (knees) and thyroid and from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF). This ensures that eyes are healthy and a DNA test has been done to detect PRA.

If you’re looking to buy a Maltipoo puppy, keep in mind that health clearances aren’t issued to dogs under two years of age.

Doing The Doggie Diet Right

Small-dog breeds tend to have speedy metabolisms, so this is something to consider when setting up your Maltipoo for diet success.

Think about supplementing 30 to 40 more calories per pound of body weight as compared to a larger dog.

Strive for high quality, protein-packed dog food that is free of grain and fillers. Fill your dog’s bowl with ⅝ to 1 ½ cups of food that is divided into two meals per day.

Keep in mind, like people, all dogs are individuals and, as such, will have unique dietary needs. How much food your Maltipoo eats will depend on their age, activity level, size, and any existing health problems.

If you aren’t sure what is the best diet for your Maltipoo, consult your veterinarian or a certified canine nutritionist. They will have a far better understanding of your dog’s specific nutritional needs than any food manufacturer and will be able to give you helpful guidelines.

Maltipoos Need Moderate Exercise

While this mixed breed is highly energetic, it’s a good thing they’re small because that means they don’t need too much workout. You can keep your pup entertained even while staying indoors with just a few toys and interactive games.

You and your Maltipoo can also play a game of fetch with her favorite ball in your safely-fenced backyard if you don’t have time to take her out for a walk.

But like any dog, it’s best to spend some outdoor time with your pooch. At least 40 minutes of

daily exercise will do. It can be spent by going for a stroll around the neighborhood, or let her spend some time with her friends at the doggy park. Just mix up the activities and your Moodle won’t get bored.

Some owners split this time by going on two walks a day. It can be 20 minutes each, or 30 minutes in the morning, then 10 minutes in the afternoon or before going to bed.

It’s a win-win because you did your responsibility as an owner and you got your Poodle & Maltese cross to socialize and burn off that excess energy!

At the end of the day, your fur baby will happily cuddle on the couch or bed with you instead of developing destructive behaviors like chewing on your favorite shoes.

Expect To Brush Your Maltipoo Daily

We’ve already talked about the low-shedding, potentially low-dander benefits of the Maltipoo’s fur coat. However, keep in mind that there is no such thing as a 100% hypoallergenic dog!

If you are allergic, don’t jump the gun and assume that a Maltipoo is your golden ticket for dog ownership. There is a chance you may not develop an allergic reaction the first time you meet the Maltipoo, but you might react after some time if you are sensitive.

So, before you decide that this hybrid is the right dog for you, meet and spend some time with a number of different Maltipoos to see how you will react.

This crossbreed can be high maintenance in the beauty department and calls for a good amount of grooming to maintain a healthy coat that doesn’t get matted and tangled up.

To keep unsightly knots from forming, brush the entire coat daily. Baths should be given at least once a month for supreme softness. Don’t neglect those shaggy Maltipoo ears! They trap dirt and debris easily and need a thorough cleaning.

Maltipoos can make do with a solid clipping at least once or twice a year. The hair on the head will need special attention from the scissors monthly, especially around the eyes and ears.

The Maltipoo Is A Total Sweetie Pie

What’s better than a dog bred for companionship? The Maltipoo is the complete package if you’re looking for a cuddle buddy that always wants to please you.

Active, fun, and kind, this crossbreed adapts to any type of living situation, whether your home is a castle or a tiny New York City apartment.

Gentle and sweet, Maltipoos are an ideal choice for first-time dog owners. They also do well with children and other pets.

But, while they get along well with kids, Maltipoos can be easily injured if rough handled by younger children. Therefore, the Maltese and poodle mix isn’t recommended to homes with children younger than six years old.

Due to their easy-going manner, they are especially well suited for older adults who may live alone and need a little friend that’s easy to care for.

Although Maltipoos are loyal dogs, this makes them a bit needy in the emotional department. They don’t like to be left alone, and can easily develop separation anxiety if left without company for hours on end

They are even prone to depression as a result of too much alone time and have been known to self-inflict harm by pulling out their fur or chewing on their skin.

Behavior-wise, this is a smart dog that learns fast and is easy to train. This is essential to stop excessive barking, which is an undesirable trait that this small-dog breed is known for.

While undesirable by many, this trait makes Maltipoos excellent alarm dogs to alert you whenever someone approaches the front door. Sounding the alarm that something suspicious is afoot is as far as your Maltipoo will go, so don’t rely on them to offer any type of protection.

How To Train Your Maltipoo

As we mentioned above, these dogs can take barking to the extreme, annoying your neighbors, the mailman, or even the casual cat that passes by your yard.

The high-energy Maltipoo can also be destructive if bored, chewing up your precious shoes and leather treasures with finesse.

Training and socialization is the answer to curbing these bad habits fast. Luckily, the Maltipoo adapts to training exceptionally well, learning fast and easily.

Keep in mind that due to their sensitive nature, Maltipoos respond only to positive reinforcement training techniques. Heavy-handed training methods such as yelling or punishment will scare the gentle Maltipoo and make it completely uncooperative.

Besides bordering on abuse, these aggressive training methods will damage the bond between you and your Maltipoo and make it afraid of you. Instead, show them patience and love and they’ll give you all they’ve got!

Here are 3 ways to get your Maltipoo behaving like the angel it is.

1. Crate Training

Dog lovers tend to have mixed feelings about crate training. This practice requires strict adherence to a crate or cage schedule. A lot of time and dedication goes into ensuring the crate is used in a constructive manner.

Throughout the day, your dog must be kept in their crate for short periods of time to cultivate a “safe haven” type of environment. This teaches your dog that the crate is where they can go to de-stress within familiar confines with familiar smells.

It also keeps dogs from roaming freely throughout the house when their owner is out, minimizing the potential for destruction.

Most importantly, crate training helps housebreak puppies. Dogs do not like to defecate in their area of sleep, so putting them on a schedule to go out to relieve themselves and come back to the crate helps develop a potty training schedule.

Crate training needs complete dedication and seriousness to work. If not, your dog could learn to see the crate as a tool for punishment or they won’t take it seriously at all.

Careful steps need to be taken when setting up the crate as well to avoid dangerous situations that can be fatal to your dog, such as strangulation from wearing a collar or breathing issues from poor ventilation.

For example, when it comes to your small-sized Maltipoo, don’t rush out and buy the biggest cage you can find thinking the more room it has to move around, the better.

Too much space leaves your Maltipoo with the option of turning a corner of the crate into a potty, which defeats the purpose of housebreaking.

The crate size should be just big enough for your Maltipoo to turn around easily, stretch out their legs while lying down, and sit up without hitting their head on the top.

2. Obedience Training

This type of training is an ongoing process best begun at a young age. It requires a specialized handler that works closely with the owner and dog to shape good behavior and an apt response to commands.

Obedience training doesn’t necessarily need a specialized trainer involved. The owner can undertake the task, but this calls for a great deal of patience and dedication.

So, if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands, hiring a trainer could be the best bet for you and your pup.

Maltipoos do well with obedience training since they learn quickly. But, keep in mind that it might be best to do this type of course together, as they prefer to be around their owner and can get anxious when left alone. So, if you don’t have the time, another training route might be more beneficial.

A basic beginner’s course lasts from 6 to 10 weeks. It helps teach your dog to obey simple commands and, most importantly, how to walk properly on a leash.

3. Socialization

Socializing a dog is much more than just getting it used to interacting with other dogs. Socialization builds their canine confidence to deal with anything unfamiliar, whether it be a new environment, people, objects, or noises.

This helps control a dog’s initial aggressive reaction to something, or in the Maltipoo’s case, excessive barking. Dogs have feelings too, and socialization helps them cope when times get “ruff.”

Introduce new environments to your dog gradually, so it can get used to their surroundings. This may include walks in the park. Keep your dog on a leash and incorporate a muzzle if other dogs are present. Allow them to watch, explore, and sniff from a safe distance.

Are You Ready To Buy A Maltipoo?

Maltipoo And Morkie Puppies On White Background

Maltipoo (left) and Morkie Puppies

After reading all about the Maltipoo, you’re ready to hop in your car and speed over to the next breeder to wrap a puppy up in a bear hug and call it your own.

Before you embark on a mission to find Maltipoo puppies for sale, it doesn’t hurt to be picky when shopping around. They’re popular designer dogs, and with popularity comes the onslaught of riff-raff looking to make a quick buck off the sale of a puppy.

Steer clear of puppy mills, auction websites, and pet shops that treat their puppies like merchandise instead of living, breathing creatures that require love and care.

Instead, take your time to research Maltipoo breeders. Do they have references or customer testimonials? A worthy breeder cares about their reputation, and good reviews are solid proof of integrity. You can also ask for recommendations from veterinarians.

Always visit the breeder to check out the living conditions and to meet the Maltipoo parents. After all, it kind of is like a first date! Ask questions about the parents’ background and medical history.

If a breeder doesn’t want you to come near the premises, they could be hiding something … like tons of dogs being bred in deplorable conditions (cough … a puppy mill).

If you’re looking for a Maltipoo that will stay a particular size or look a certain way, keep in mind as well that with crossbreeds, there is no guarantee how it will turn out as an adult, so be wary of breeders that make any promises in regards to this.

The cost of a Maltipoo? Expect to pay anywhere from $400 to as much as $2,000 for a puppy.

What About Maltipoo Adoption?

If adopting is more your jive, check out these wonderful Maltipoo rescues that have lots of cute faces waiting patiently to go to their forever home.

  • North American Maltipoo Club and Registry Rescue: A worthy resource for all of your Maltipoo needs. This organization is dedicated to the ethical care and keeping of Maltipoos, and they also help rehome rescues.
  • Poo-Mix Rescue: This handy website searches for Maltipoo rescues all over the U.S. and Canada with informational posts that can be found all in one place.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why Are Maltipoos The Best Dogs?

Not only are Maltipoos great as family companions and first-time pets because they’re calm and mild-mannered, but they’re also gentle with an outgoing personality that they can make excellent therapy dogs.

And are you worried if you have limited space indoors and outdoors for a pooch like this? Don’t be. Poodle-Maltese mixes are kind, small-sized fidos that only want your attention and affection. Your pup is probably more occupied trying to please you and everyone they meet.

What Is The Personality Of A Maltipoo?

This hybrid is awe-dorable inside and out. They have a temperament that the entire family will appreciate because they are charming, fun-loving, but also full of spunk and silly antics.

Can Maltipoos Be Left Alone For Eight Hours?

We’ve established that Moodles are companion dogs that may suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for long periods. But how long exactly can you leave them without making them anxious? To be safe, not more than four hours a day.

You also have to consider that dogs of this size have small bladders and would have to go potty.

So we recommend Maltipoos to a home where they always have a human to look after them.

Are Maltipoos Hard To House-Train?

Compared to other dog breeds, the Poodle-Maltese mix is fairly easy to housebreak, especially if training starts while they’re young. It may take between three to six months for a Maltipoo puppy to be fully house-trained, but keep in mind that it’s an ongoing process and you should have reasonable expectations.

If you want to avoid accidents or simply save your rugs and beautiful flooring, take your fido outside frequently. Don’t forget a praise or a treat when she goes to her designated potty spot!


Who can resist that shaggy face with those thick eyebrows, shining eyes, and bearded face? The Maltipoo is indeed a cutie patootie. There’s also no disputing its charming behavior.

With a Maltipoo, you get the best of the Maltese and the miniature or toy poodle breeds. Although it can be difficult to discern how a crossbreed will look or its temperament, the Maltipoo is no doubt working with some top-tier genes.

High intelligence makes it a breeze to train, and its disposition is gentle to begin with. As a companion dog, the Maltipoo is affectionate and playful.

It loves to be around humans, children, and other pets. Just be wary that it can get separation anxiety if left alone for long periods of time.

Training and socialization are key to ensure your Maltipoo is well-behaved and goes easy on the barking. Other than being prepared to administer regular grooming, you’ve got a companion that is low-maintenance and great for first-time pet owners.

Is the Maltipoo the right dog for you? Tell us what you think in the comments!

2 replies on “Maltipoo – The Ultimate Guide To The Maltese Poodle Mix”

  • Lindy kelley says:

    This article was wonderful to read. Although I already got 2 maltipoo babies it described them to a tee. That being said I learned a lot from this article, probably adding about ear cleaning and the plucking should be mentioned because I did not know that info. But, they are a bundle of love that’s for sure

  • Sheila Smith says:

    I just recently got me a maltipoo and I love her. My question is she seems to pout and cry if she doesn’t get her way is this common for Maltipoos to pout and cry

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