Choosing a Poodle

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1. "HOW DO YOU HOUSEBREAK A POODLE?"
Well the bad news is you don't!  Now before you freak out, let us explain.   The odds are good that your dog will train you!   By that we mean, in time you will learn the signals that your pet(s) give you around the time that their voiding needs arise.   For example, your dog may walk rapidly around the room sniffing the floor just before he does anything.  If you are paying close attention, that is the precise moment to take him outside or to the preferred place you want him to do his business.   Some dogs adhere to a very rigid schedule, and void at the same times every day (generally right after sleeping or eating). With that being the case, observe, make note, and then be sure to place him in the correct location. If you observe well, your reward will be fewer messes to clean.  Perhaps the most important rule is to never punish your dog for following a "natures call".   Absent the capacity for reason, he will only get more confused if punished for performing a very natural act.   However, be sure to always reinforce positive behaviors!

2. "DO MALES OR FEMALES MAKE BETTER PETS?"
Good question!  It depends on a variety of factors.   However, if you will allow a sweeping generality, for many people, a male is more loving and less moody than a female!   Sorry girls, we are not making a gender slam, but we think it is a hormonal thingy!   Females seem at different times to be less tolerant and less affectionate than males.   Females also tend to bond to one person, whereas males more or less will bond to a family.   We are not really sure that neutering is the answer to this issue either.   We have a little female; she always was our prize little girl, who was a real crabby thing, until she was mated.   After her first litter, guess what?  She is still the crabbiest dog in the house!  But we still love her.

3. "WHAT SIZES ARE RECOGNIZED BY THE AKC/UKC?"
First of all, a comment or two in general, and this can be applied to any breed that has size variations.  In order to be recognized as a size variation, it must breed true.  This means if two larger dogs are mated, their offspring will be the same size, or if two smaller dogs are mated, again their puppies will all be of comparable size.  However, the two dog registry organizations both only recognize the Standard, the Miniature, and the Toy.  Primarily, because this size will breed true, and the standard is the largest and is normally from 16 to 27 inches tall, and the miniature is 11 to 15 inches tall.  The toy is the smallest size recognized and is anything under 10 inches tall and weighs 7 to 10 pounds.  All of these dimensions are based on full growth at adulthood.  Many breeders will refer to two more size differences, the tiny toy, and the teacup.  The toy will usually weigh from 3 to 4 pounds and the toy will weigh only 5-7 pounds.  If you purchase either of these very small ones, it will still be eligible for registry with either the AKC or the UKC.  However, on your registry you will see it referred to as a toy only.

4. "IS A TINY TOY POODLE RIGHT FOR ME OR MY FAMILY?"
Perhaps not!   Our reasoning is as follows.   The tiny toy by virtue of its size is delicate.   As such it is subject to hypoglycemic episodes following any form of a trauma, or simply because it runs out of food.   Therefore, a teacup should be kept in a home where there is likely always a live human present, and an adult to boot.  Families with small children are also not likely to be successful teacup owners, as the dogs are so fragile that small children can inadvertently cause an injury to your baby.

5. "WHAT KIND OF DOG FOOD DO YOU RECOMMEND?"
At the risk of you assuming we have stock in the company, at one time we leaned heavily on Wellness, Solid Gold or Pedigree, because it is compared so favorably with the more expensive brands sold by Veterinarians and top end pet stores.  Further, the protein component is either chicken or lamb, and the cereal filler is rice as opposed to corn, which can cause allergy problems for some dogs. We allow our dogs to choose dry food and clean fresh water all day and night.   We also produce a wet food for pregnant or nursing females and puppies using dry dog food moistened and combined with scrambled egg, ground beef and cottage cheese. 

Check out this video about poodles.