When beginning a search for your new dog, it is important to think about what traits and characteristics are important to you – do you want a dog that is friendly and furry? Are you interested in a small dog or a giant new friend? Do you want a dog to take hunting or one with a short coat that was meant to live near the water?
Whatever combination of things that you are looking for in your dog, take into consideration what type of coat you want your dog to have.
Dogs come in many different colors, breeds, and coat types, so making sure that you are comfortable with the type of coat that your dog will have is important to factor in. A dog with a flat coat can be easier to take care of than a dog with a curly coat.
Dog grooming is part of the cost of caring for your dog, so be sure to add grooming care when calculating the yearly cost of caring for your dog. If you are only interested in dogs with a curly coat, we have found 15 curly-haired dog breeds for you to check out as a potential family addition.
15 Curly Haired Dog Breeds
1. Bichon Frise
When looking for a sweet, fluffy, and curly companion, you can’t beat the Bichon Frise.
These dogs have charming and friendly dispositions and a coat that looks and feels like a cloud.
Because they are white, they will need to be groomed regularly to maintain their clean coat and avoid mats.
Although not the smallest curly-haired dog, growing from 9-12 inches high and only weighing in at 7-12 pounds, the Bichon Frise is a great choice for a family looking to add a kid-friendly choice.
A partial cousin to the Bichon Frise, the Bolognese is a slightly smoother coated version of the Bichon. With the same bright white coat, the Bolognese has a sweet and friendly disposition and the typical dark eyes and a black nose.
The Bolognese is also similar in size with a general height of 10-12 inches and weighing up to 9 pounds. This fluffy white darling can be a great option for a family that wants a curly dog but not tight curls.
You will need to be sure to comb them out every day to ensure that there are no mats or snarls that can happen with a slightly less curly coat.
Poodles are well known for their curly coat, great personality, and high intelligence.
When looking for a dog with a great curly coat, a poodle is a fantastic choice.
Whichever size you choose, you can be sure that you are getting a friendly, beautiful dog breed that will not shed and can be a wonderful companion.
4. Airedale Terrier
What makes the Airedale Terrier so interesting is that it is the largest of the terrier breed and the only terrier with such a different coat texture.
The Airedale is a strong, athletic dog that can range from 20-25 inches in height but weighs between 50-70 pounds.
They often have a distinct beard and are also usually tan and black in color.
The Airedale Terrier is a sweet, strong dog with a low-maintenance curly coat, so if you want to reduce the cost and frequency of groomer visits, this dog is a great choice.
5. Curly-Coat Retriever
Not your typical looking retriever, the Curly-Coat Retriever has a distinct curly coat that protects itself from both cold water while bringing back game and when running through the brush.
This retriever does shed, so it is important to be diligent about combing out their coat.
One of the largest dog breeds that have a curly coat, these dogs weigh anywhere from 50-90 pounds.
With a beautiful coat and that amazing retriever personality, these dogs make great companions and are friendly and loyal. They come in many different colors and really bring a great personality to your home.
6. Bedlington Terrier
Another sweet dog that is part of the terrier group is the Bedlington Terrier. This dog is often compared to a lamb because of its appearance and gentle nature. These dogs can be found in other colors, such as tan or brown, but white is very popular among those looking for this type of terrier.
The Bedlington Terrier does need some grooming, but only every few months as long as you keep up with weekly combing to reduce mats and snarls.
They can reach up to 18 inches in height and are often found ranging from 17-25 pounds. This dog breed is known to be very sweet and athletic, similar to the other terrier breeds they are classified with.
What a great name for a great little dog. The Hungarian Pumi has a mixed coat, with both wavy and curly hair mixed together. When grooming your Pumi, it is important not to clip them too much, as this can change how the different hairs interact with one another and change their appearance.
The Pumi is a smaller breed of dog, ranging from 15-20 inches high and weighing 20-30 pounds, but don’t let their smaller size trick you into thinking they are not smart and crafty dogs.
They come in many different colors, from black to white and colors in between. The Pumi has interestingly cocked over ears and a tail that curls over at the end, lending this dog breed to a sweet, innocent look.
8. Portuguese Water Dog
When searching for a curly-haired pet, the Portuguese Waterdog makes an excellent choice. These dogs have a fluffy, friendly face, high reaching tail, and wonderful smile which brings people to them.
Another curly-coated dog that is hypoallergenic, they are often great swimmers and love to compete in athletic training. These dogs do not shed much but do best with scheduled grooming several times a year.
The Portuguese Water Dog can weigh up to 60 pounds and grows to 15-25 inches, depending on the breeding stock. These dogs are great for adventurous families and those that enjoy water sports.
9. Kerry Blue Terrier
This terrier breed has one characteristic that separates it from the other terriers: its black-blue curly coat. Although not a tight curl, they will still require regular grooming as their coat grows continuously.
A regular coming schedule will also be important to reduce mats and excessive shedding. Similar to other terriers, the Kerry Blue can grow up to 20 inches in height and weigh between 30-40 pounds.
The Kerry Blue is considered to be a medium-sized dog breed, so if you are looking for a dog with a curly coat, friendly personality, and interesting color, this may be a great choice for your new dog.
10. Irish Water Spaniel
If you are looking for a pooch that seems to smile when you walk into the room, the Irish Water Spaniel may be just what you are looking for.
These tightly curled dogs have another unique feature in that although very curly, their nose and face have a smooth coat.
This gives them a different appearance than other curly-haired dogs that have one type of coat.
The Irish Water Spaniel can grow to a height up to 24 inches and usually weigh between 45-65 pounds and look similar to a poodle.
If you are not afraid of a curly-haired dog that will need grooming and constant attention, then the Barbet is the dog you want.
Sometimes nicknamed the “wooly bear” the barbet has a dense curly coat that can feel similar to wool, which is used to protect itself from cold water when working and hunting. It is important for the Barbet to have regular grooming to reduce the risk of large mats in their fur.
Another medium breed of curly-haired dog, the Barbet can be 18-25 inches high and weigh up to 65 pounds, which is a bit bigger than most medium-sized breeds.
12. Lagotto Romagnolo
With such a fantastic name it is no wonder that the Lagotto Romagnolo originated from Italy as a water dog but is also known as the “truffle hunter.” These dogs are incredibly smart, highly trainable, and very loyal.
The Lagotto Romagnolo comes in a range of colors and sizes, ranging from brown, red white, and combination colors, and is often 15-18 inches high.
Although not a common breed when researching curly-haired dogs, this group can be a lot of fun for anyone that loves to go on adventures.
13. Bouvier des Flandres
Another dog that originated in Europe, the Bouvier des Flandres is known for being a hard-working farm dog. Originally used on cattle farms, these dogs are now used as police dogs in some parts of the world.
With their curly coat, high intelligence, and protective nature, these dogs can grow to be quite large, topping out at over 110 pounds.
Although not a dog to shed, they will need grooming to keep their coat looking clean cut.
One of the two “Doodle” breeds discussed in this article, the Labradoodle crosses the Labrador Retriever with a Poodle, resulting in a sweet, active, and friendly curly-haired dog breed. Although not all tightly curled, they can have fur ranging from a tight poodle curl to a more relaxed lab coat.
The Labradoodle comes in a wide variety of colors just like both breeds and ranges from miniature to medium sizes and weighing up to 45 pounds.
These dogs are thought to be the combination of two great family dogs combined into one.
The second in the Doodle family, the Goldendoodle is a combination of a Poodle and Golden Retriever. When putting together two smart, friendly, and family-oriented dog breeds, a dog rich in kindness and love was created.
These dogs make wonderful working and therapy dogs even with their larger height ranging from 20-40 inches.
If one of your priorities when searching for your next dog is a curly coat, you have many different options to choose from.
Whether it be a small lap companion or a large working dog, there are breeds that range in size, coloring, and curly coat textures that are sure to match what you are searching for – but buyer be warned, a curly coat can come with expected grooming needs, and you want to be sure to be prepared to either spend some time with a comb and brush or making some appointments with your local groomer.