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Psycho Poodle

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"In France, they're known as the pit bulls of Par-ee!"
Vernon, regarding a poodle latching onto his pants during a news cast on "violence in the streets", Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987), "Return of the Shredder"

Poodles are funny dogs. Their poofy fur seemingly gives them a Funny Afro, and in fiction, they are often owned by Upper Class Twits, which they tend to share a personality with. But despite their odd appearance and incompetence, many fictional poodles act quite pompous and dignified, if not Big Friendly Dogs.

However, some fictional poodles are the exact opposite - despite their tiny bodies, they act just as vicious as an Angry Guard Dog, especially if used as the latter. Alternatively, they can be more cunning and sneaky, and may retain some of their stereotypical elegance. A Dirty Cop (especially a Killer Cop), a French Jerk or a Rich Bitch might have one as their Right-Hand Attack Dog. Or in a story involving anthropomorphized dogs, a poodle is a likely candidate to play such roles directly.

It's worth noting that in Real Life, poodles were originally hunting dogs, so some measure of aggressiveness is actually normal. Also, standard poodles, the ones primarily used for hunting, are pretty big (typically similar in height and length to a Labrador retriever, but thinner). Mini and toy poodles are just showdogs bred mainly for companionship (though some do get used for hunting), and they've got a bit of a Napoleon Complex like other small dogs (particularly the chihuahua and the pinscher). Behavioral issues do appear more commonly in mini and toy poodles, likely due to poor breeding caused by the vast popularity of the breeds combined with an unfortunate tendency of owners of small breed dogs to neglect properly training or socializing them. Although the real-life usage of poodles as Angry Guard Dogs are not uncommon, it's just that in fiction, poodles are usually small and delicate, so some creators like to mess around with that stereotype by making their poodle characters evil and brutal.

Subtrope of Killer Rabbit and Dog Stereotype. See also Mister Muffykins and Bully Bulldog. Has nothing to do with Poke the Poodle.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Rui Nikaido from Odd Taxi is an Idol Singer who puts up a cutesy front to further her career, but underneath the facade she's a ruthless, cynical careerist who was willing to kill one of her band mates for possibly usurping her as lead singer in their group, and ultimately helps the Yakuza dispose of the body when it turns out said band mate was Dead All Along.
  • The Big Bad of Wan Wan Celeb Soreyuke! Tetsunoshin is a toy poodle named Neo, who both looks and acts the part, and is a powerful magic user seeking to Take Over the World. He only ever pretends to act cute & innocent in order to manipulate his owner, and is otherwise the single most evil character in the show, very nearly killing multiple characters and successfully killing Chocolat before almost destroying Tokyo.

    Comic Books 

    Films — Animated 
  • In the An American Tail Direct to Video feature The Mystery of the Night Monster, the Big Bad is a miniature poodle named Madame Mousey, who despises rodents because she is often mistaken for one, and so plots to get rid of the Nice Mice by kidnapping them and giving them to the cats.
  • The page image provider is the Madagascar spin-off short "The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper". In it, Private is mistaken for a squeak toy by Nana and taken to her home as a present for her pet toy poodle, Mr. Chew. Mr. Chew acts all sweet and peppy for her owner, but as soon as her back is turned, it becomes a snarling beast, which gives the other penguins a serious fight when they come to rescue Private.
  • Georgette the show poodle from Disney's Oliver & Company greets the new kitten Oliver with condescension, finishing with an outright screech: "It may be Jenny's house, but everything from the doorknobs down IS MINE!" She dials back her Alpha Bitchiness when she must team up with Fagan's dogs to rescue Jenny and Oliver from the villain, but dials it back up at the conclusion, causing Tito, her Stalker with a Crush, to flee from her in a panic.
  • Fifi the poodle from Open Season 2 gained a massive hatred for Woodland Creatures after he was scared by some a long time ago, causing him to back into a bug zapper and unwittingly electrocute himself. He plans to place shock collars on the heroes as revenge. However, he has a Heel–Face Turn at the end of the movie, and stays a good guy in Open Season 3.
  • In The Wild, the gang get attacked by a vicious pack of stray dogs which was led by a crazy white poodle.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Batman Returns: One member of the Red Triangle Circus Gang, a gang of criminals disguised as circus performers, is a poodle trainer lady. Her small poodle, which she is always seen with, functions as an attack dog.
  • Blade: Trinity: one of the "vampire dogs" is a Pomeranian, which is nearly as aggressive as the vampire rottweiler.
  • Among the monsters in Goosebumps (2015) is a poodle (Probably the one in the Give Yourself Goosebumps book: Please Don't Feed The Vampire). It looks innocent at first, but then it starts floating, and then it growls and makes a Nightmare Face, complete with huge fangs and glowing red eyes.
  • In the 2003 Ang Lee Hulk movie, one of the dogs of Dr. David Banner is a French poodle, which he later injects with the mutation serum so it turns into a man-eating poodle from hell before siccing it on Bruce's Love Interest Betty Ross.

  • Animorphs: Marco's stepmother's poodle Euclid (she's a math teacher) is a vicious little bastard, with Marco and his father sharing the same opinion of him. Marco uses it as a morph to attack a Nice Character, Mean Actor Controller who's completely insane but needs to maintain a mellow guru aura.
  • In Flawed Dogs, the Big Bad is Cassius, a poodle. When his owners adopt the protagonist, a dachshund named Sam, Cassius is enraged, and his jealousy drives him to frame Sam for brutal crimes and ruin his life.
  • In Men at Arms the leader of the "Dog's Guild" is a miniature poodle who calls himself Big Fido and gives speeches about the "inherent superiority of the canine race". His gang of much larger street dogs obeys him because he’s Axe-Crazy. He also makes up claims about wolf packs that Angua, a werewolf who's friends with a few wolves, knows are nonsense.
  • The Last Dogs has a poodle named Dandyclaw, who runs a group of dogs called the Enclave. He welcomes Max and Rocky (two of the main protagonists) into his group, but he rules the Enclave with an iron paw and has No Sense of Humor. He also keeps arranging for the two dogs to stay even longer and brags about how he learned to carry dog food in a wagon when Max and Rocky had already done it before.
  • In The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Christopher's father Ed briefly mentions how their neighbor Eileen Shears' poodle Wellington became "schizophrenic" after an operation, which is what led to Ed killing him as revenge after an argument with Eileen.
  • Subverted with Freddy Lupin from 100% Wolf. He's from a family of werewolves, strives to be a fearsome werewolf when he's old enough, and is ultimately disappointed to find out he becomes a werepoodle, but he and the werewolves (sans his Evil Uncle Hotspur) are good guys.
  • Pets Rule: "The Poodle of Doom" features Fluffy the poodle, a flat-out evil mastermind plotting to destroy the world as recompense for his favorite dog part closing down and leaving him unable to see his friends anymore. Even compared to fellow evil dog Ember, Fluffy is so cartoonishly villainous that he constantly grins evilly, yells "DOOM!" as a catchphrase, and plans on creating a mind-control device to force humans to help him destroy the earth, even framing Ember for making a mess after one of Ember's attempts to thwart him fails. The only thing preventing him from being a genuine threat is that, as a dog, he lacks an understanding for how huge a task destroying the world truly is, and so most of his evil plans amount to little more than causing mundane trouble which he thinks is genuine villainy.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • The Far Side has at least two examples:
    • In one strip, three poodles are discussing murdering their owner. The caption reads: "Well, yes, that is the downside, Fluffy. When we kill her, the pampering will end."
    • In another strip, the owners of a poodle open the door to a cellar where the poodle with a crazed expression on its face is building a giant robot poodle. The caption reads: "And down here we keep Fluffy. We're afraid he may have gone mad."
  • In one Garfield comic, Garfield laughs at a poodle, calling it a "pathetic excuse for a dog". Then the poodle gives him a frightening Nightmare Face, and Garfield responds "...check that."

    Video Games 
  • CarnEvil: In the Big Top, among all the Monster Clowns that attack you are "Broodles", mutant poodles in clown suits.
  • Grand Theft Auto V: One of the T-shirts you can purchase for your character has a picture of a vicious, snarling poodle.
  • The Governor's Mansion in The Secret of Monkey Island is protected by "vicious piranha-poodles". Guybrush has to get past them by feeding them meat drugged with yellow "Caniche Endormi" flowers that will put the poodles to sleep.
  • The main antagonist of SPY Fox 3: Operation Ozone is Poodles Galore, a poodle who wants to destroy the Ozone layer with a giant aerosol can-shaped space station to heat up the planet Earth so people will be forced to buy her SPF 2001 sunscreen.
  • The first obstacle that Earthworm Jim encounters is Chuck, a deranged hermit who has turned a country sized landfill into his personal fiefdom and who never lets anyone who crosses its metal bars leave as able-bodied as they entered. And he is not alone in protecting that ghetto from outsiders, he has a sleepless guard worthy of him, a terror who is described as a running chainsaw and a rabid lust for tearing apart living things. This terror's name is Fifi and it is a poodle according to the game's manual and not the viewer's recognition, since anyone would be reluctant to even identify it as a dog let alone as a pet breed associated with pampering, gourmet meals and personal hairdressers.
  • One of the playable characters in Rampage Total Destruction that you can use to destroy cities is a poodle Kaiju named Fifi.
  • Nekomew's Nightmares: Pierro the Clown is an anthropomorphic poodle depicted with blood-shot eyes and sharp teeth. Subverted when its revealed that he only wanted to cheer up Nekomew after he fell down the stairs and was sent to the hospital.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Animals (2016) episode "Dogs", the main antagonists are a Terrible Trio comprised of an Alpha Bitch poodle (pun very much intended) named Angela and her two incompetent sidekicks. The violent aspect is subverted, though—she spends the entire episode threatening protagonists Phil and Mike (a papillon and a pug) with a "showdown" at a predetermined time, terrifying them because she's quite large and they're both small, unintimidating dogs. When the appointed time arrives, it turns out the "showdown" is just Angela prancing around like she's at a dog show.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door: In the episode "H.O.U.N.D.", Number 5 gets attacked and has her homework eaten by a dog that came out of Valerie's house. She however denies that her dog did the deed. When she and Number 2 and 4 investigate later, they find her dog to be harmless just like Valerie said. Unfortunately for Number 5, when she said that her dog didn't eat her homework, she only meant her dog as she then turns into a Were-Poodle and tries to eat Number 5. The gang is able to beat her by feeding her Number 4's god awful homework.
  • Felix the Cat Saves Christmas: At one point in the Villain Song, as an example of how bad he is, Professor is shown dripping a chemical onto a little girl's poodle, turning it into a giant monster that attacks a city.
  • Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures has a poodle Hellhound named Fluffy.
  • Phineas and Ferb: Little Suzy Johnson has one, who she has attack and pee on Candace.
  • Rugrats (1991):
    • In the episode, "Spike Runs Away", when Spike runs away, Stu and Didi decide to get Tommy a replacement pet. One of these is Cuddles, a very aggressive poodle belonging to Mr. Fillihulster, one of their neighbors. Cuddles constantly barks and growls angrily at Tommy and Chuckie, breaks his toys, steals any time he might have had with Stu and Didi from him, and demands they give her what food they do have. According to Didi, when Mr. Fillihulster took her back, she bit him the minute she got inside the door. Tommy sums her up best;
      Tommy: Chuckie, I knew Spike! Spike was a friend of mine! And let me tell you something, that poople is no Spike!
    • Later averted with Fifi, another poodle introduced in Rugrats in Paris, who becomes Spike's love interest and the pet of the Finster family.
  • In the Squirrel Boy episode "The Rod Squad", Rodney eats all the sticky buns Andy's mom bought. Afraid that his friend will take the fall for it, Rodney ropes Leon and Darlene into a scheme to steal some from the sticky bun factory. But when Darlene and Leon finally understand his scheme and goals, they back out and Rodney goes in alone, only to be attacked by the factory's security and the Angry Guard Dogs used are vicious white poodles.
  • What A Cartoon! Show: Subverted in No Smoking. Cerberus, a hellhound who is The Dragon and pet of the Red Guy, has the body and one head of a poodle. However, he shows hardly any malice, and seems like a Punch-Clock Villain more than anything else.
  • Averted with Fluffles, Piella Bakewell's poodle in the Wallace & Gromit film A Matter of Loaf and Death. She's a lot nicer than her owner, who is a "Cereal" Killer who murders bakers because she was fired from a bread company's ad campaign for being overweight and treats her pet like crap. She does later take revenge by beating Piella up with a oven glove-wearing crane in the final showdown.
  • Thunderbirds Are Go gives Lady Penelope a spoilt and foul-tempered pug called Sherbert, who occasionally doubles as an interrogation method.
  • Danger Mouse: The 2015 reboot introduces the villain Pink Dawn, a bratty poodle girl who's also a self-proclaimed princess.
  • In a flashback scene in the Rocko's Modern Life episode, "Rinse and Spit", a young Rocko is surrounded by a gang of poodle bullies who want to put Spunky (then a puppy) in a jar and add him to their collection of puppies. Filburt protects Rocko and Spunky from the bullies by hiding them in his shell.


Video Example(s):


Madagascar: Mr Chew

He may act nice and sweet around his owner, but when her back is turned, he's crazy.

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Main / PsychoPoodle

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