I often get that asked about the poodle coat - is it true that they are hypoallergenic? They don't shed, do they? I heard the poodle coat doesn't matt, is that right? They don't make you itch, do they?
Yeah and nay - and I'm going to tell you about this in easy laymans terms, rather than to go over technical or talk doctorease. First the NAY part. Technically there is no such thing as a hypoallergenic coat that doesn't shed or matt.
If it's alive, it'll grow, it'll replace and renew itself with time, and it will shed skin cells. So much for that myth!
In reality though - here comes the YEAH - poodles are some of most suitable dogs for allergy sufferers, neatnicks and "extreme clean" folks, as well as folks that want a neat looking dog with lots of versatility in the looks department.
In my experience I find they are very compatible with a variety of allergy sufferers - from the ones that have itchy skin break-outs when they get touched by certain breeds of dog or cat hair, to the ones who have mild to medium breathing allergies caused by dog/cat dander as well as other allergens.
I would caution anyone who has medium to severe allergies or uses an inhaler, to poodle test first before getting a puppy, but most anybody with mild breathing or contact allergies, seems to manage being around a poodle kid just fine. This also goes for many [but not all] poodle hybrids - even different pups in the same litter in poodle hybrids may cause various allergic reactions in certain people.
In regards to the shedding and matting - yes poodles shed too [they are alive and kicking after all, LOL] - but what makes the difference is that the hair stays in the coat, until it gets brushed out. So you can pick up your poodle puppy in the morning and kiss + cuddle it good bye on your way out the door to work, without wearing it's coat. Your poodle can sleep on the couch or in bed or ride on the front seat in the car, without anybody else sitting on/in it, showing the evidence that you have a dog.
However - that said - in order to get to that non-matting part, it requires regular brushing and maintenance of the coat, so the dead hair can come out. This [the dead hair sliding down the living hair shaft and getting tangled or caught up towards the end of the living hair] is what causes matting and clumps. And a poodle that does not get brushed regularly - daily would be great, but really - who has the time for that? Once or twice a week a thorough brush out with a slicker or bristle brush is all that is needed to keep your poodle kid looking great.
A poodle that does not get brushed regularly, will eventually get matts - how severe is all depending on what type of shampoos + conditioners you use and how often you bathe, how often you brush or don't brush, the quality of the dog food you're feeding, and how often your dog sees the groomer. Internal and external parasites will also influence coat texture and structure.
A bath and shampoo [plus conditioner if you bathe more frequently or your dog is in a longer clip] once very 2-3 weeks, and a twice weekly thorough brush out [once will do on a short clip if your dog goes to the groomer frequently], is all that it takes to get the most benefits from one of the main selling points of the poodles - no shedding or hair over clothes, furniture, car or carpet - no doggy odors, and a neat looking poodle child you can be proud off!