I have been reading here for a while and just introduced myself. I am a member of a search and rescue team. A standard poodle is top on my list for my next search and rescue candidate.
However, I think I'm going to be a bit of a toughie to find a match with. At least that's my impression from the bit I have gathered about the poodle world. First, because I would be a first time poodle owner, so I don't know pedigrees, good breeders, etc. And because of my requirments in a dog.
Here's what I am ideally looking for- All typical health testing for spoos, Female, Silver (I live in TX, this is my color preference for practical reasons as well as cosmetic), fantastic drive and work ethic, prefer from parents who have some kind of 'work' title be it hunting, OB, agility. I don't mind having to travel (by plane or car), but it would be fantastic if it's within driving distance because I need the breeder to be willing to let me bring some search materials to test the pups on hopefully more than once (because I don't think I'll find a breeder with experience with HRD SAR dogs).
And here's the biggie- I need the breeder to be willing to give me breeding rights. It's very typical in the SAR/working dog world, actually you generally only see S/N dogs when they are rescues. People get their dogs and when they do their job's well they get their next dog from that one, and the next one, so on and so forth.
I have gone the rescue route with my previous two SAR dogs but I am really ready to get a breed I want and vastly increase my chances of producing SAR dogs. I have no issue whatsoever with doing any health testing, working with my breeder as a mentor, getting outside opinions, and definately getting help when it comes to choosing a stud dogs a few years down the road. I also will be doing OB and Rally at a minimum so odds are the dog would have other titles as well yearly national SAR certification testing. However, there is no way that I can keep a SAR dog in a show coat so the conformation ring is a no go. Lastly, I have no problem spaying if health screenings aren't passed, or if she doesn't work out as a working dog, etc.
I would prehaps consider a male if that pup showed the best aptitude for SAR work but would also want to leave him intact.
So, am I wishing for the impossible? Or is there a breeder(s) out there I can start contacting to discuss this stuff with? Point me in the right direction! It seems to me that kennel names are okay to post here but also feel free to PM me. With possible breeders or people that maybe seem good but that I should avoid.
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How cool! I would love to see a working Poodle SAR dog.
I'm in the wrong country and have the wrong size and don't breed, so no help at all, but I'm sure there are Standard people who will chime in.
If it were me, I'd start by finding lines I'm interested in from poodle registries and agility results and just start writing to those breeders.
I seem to recall finding a website somewhere when I was looking for my poodle, a Miniature breeder that was specifically breeding for agility. I'll try to find it; I know you are looking for a Standard, but this breeder might know a Standard breeder with similar goals.
Names of dogs: Holly, Iris and Wiz, Quincy,Journey and Pearl
Poodle Type: Standard red, apricot and black
Location: Ontario, Canada
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I would contact Susan Fraser at Bibelot Poodles. Her lines do fantastic in all performance events..herding, field, rally, agility and obedience and would likely do very well in SAR work. The only issue I see in what you are hoping for is the breeding rights. But, there is never any harm in asking, and there might be something you could work out together.
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I think between color and full registration that your requirements are too narrow. As you dip your toe into the breeding world, something else to consider: SAR dogs are often very, very high drive. They need to be high drive in order to stick with the job until the end. If you breed for this temperament, where are you going to place the puppies who don't go into SAR homes? There is a good chance that they will be too much for their pet owners to handle.
I don't know much about the SAR world but I am surprised to hear that it is typical to work intact dogs and bitches. I have done competitive Obedience and I can tell you that my bitch is way less focused when she is in season. Given that she cycled every 20 weeks, having her intact took a huge chunk out of my training/showing time.
I think you would be better off just getting a new puppy from a breeder each time you needed a new dog to train.
Mostly black, but I think you'll have to compromise on colour.
Bibelot, yes, one bitch of her breeding got her Master Hunter title. (silver, white, blue/grey)
Louter Creek Hunting poodles (red)
Lakeland Hunting Poodles (he has a black bitch from Tudorose I think he's going to breed her this year)
If you're interested in the small standard/kleinpudel size Karin might be breeding a couple of litters of that size this year. Karbit Poodles. There are 2 Karbit poodles on this site, Vinnie and my Rudy. Karin's dogs are VERY drivey, they have natural tails and almost all are of German or Russian bloodlines.
Thanks for the help! I realize that it's probably not going to be an easy search, which it why I am starting it way in advance of any real 'need' for my next dog.
I guess silvers are a bit less common than I realized (I know of course the majority are black/white). My reasoning for this color (other than how pretty it is) is because of our heat here in TX, the darker dogs tire much more quickly while working in the summer, and I was trying to steer away from white/cream just to make my life easier when it comes to clean. I would consider an apricot although my current dog is very apricoty and she can be harder to visually track when she ranges far away from me.
I know that breeding rights are going to be my biggest hurdle. While I have experience handling dogs through pregnancy, raising a litter, and helping to rehome, (rescue animals) I have never intentionally bred. I am willing to work with a breeder to do whatever makes them comfortable, I have even looked at being a foster, then buying my next pup from the litter of my dog when it comes time. It isn't ideal since I wouldn't be there for the day to day raising but something I have thought about. I would love to have someone as a mentor and someone to help as the time came, but they would have to be okay with a dog that has performance titles and a important job instead of a conformation title.
SAR dogs can be high drive, but we don't want them to be as high drive as say a narc dog, police dog, border patrol. We look for pretty middle of the line with the puppy aptitude tests. What they do need (for my purposes) is an interest and love of the source (human remains). I actually prefer my dogs more food motivated than toy motivated personally. It's nice to have both though. My current dog is a pup I found on the highway when she was about 4 weeks old. I lucked out and she loves the source, but she could easily be just a pet- granted one that would benefit from OB training and exercise but what dog wouldn't? My previous dog was the same.
From what I have learned and read about spoos, pretty much any with work ethic (hunting, OB, agility) should work out well as long as they like the source. That personality/drive seems very typical in poodles so I don't foresee issues finding homes for pups that are typical of the breed standard. If the type of drive I wanted wasn't already common in poodles I would look elsewhere for a different breed. Those with a higher drive would go to more active/performance homes, and those that didn't would go to more laid back homes.
It is common to run intact dogs. Females can be harder to work when in heat, but we train them to work through it and it's also a really good distraction for the other dogs to have to work through. During a certification, seminar, or real search any bitches in heat would run last. Again, I am also open to a male but I this point I have preferred the female partenership.
There is a huge difference between trying to find a puppy each time you need a dog and raising your own litter. Being able to give those puppies toys with source scent on them from day 4, and seeing them grow and play and their personalities everyday is light years difference from assessing a litter once or twice and choosing a pup. Choosing a SAR dog is always a bit of a gamble, if I can in the future put the odds in my favor that's what I'd like to do.
I guess silvers are a bit less common than I realized (I know of course the majority are black/white). My reasoning for this color (other than how pretty it is) is because of our heat here in TX, the darker dogs tire much more quickly while working in the summer, and I was trying to steer away from white/cream just to make my life easier when it comes to clean.
A White dog gets just as dirty as a Black dog.
That said, I do understand the desire for a light colored dog because I live in Colorado and I know how intense the sun can be. Personally I also like White/Cream Poodles because they are easier to see at night.
Silver is a tricky thing. The true Platinum Silver standards are few and far between. Many Silver Standards are more in the range of Pewter to light Grey and often they don't go Silver at all but stay Blue, which might be too dark for your purpose.
I think White or Cream is your best bet. It gives you a wider range options. Still, the full registration thing is going to be tricky. It is a trust issue. A good breeder may be OK with you breeding, but who are you going to sell your puppies to? As a breeder, one of my biggest fears is that my dogs or bloodlines are going to end up in a BYB program.
I may have missed it in your intro, but have you put an Obedience or Agility title on a dog before?
Those with a higher drive would go to more active/performance homes, and those that didn't would go to more laid back homes.
Be warned. There are not exactly a plethora of performance homes out there. Even worse, there are buyers who say that they want to do performance but who never actually get around to it.
cbrand- Thank you for taking the time read through my super long posts and give me advice. My best case scenario would be to find someone now that I can get to know and that can get to know me. That way we can work something out that both I and the breeder are comfortable with. My current pup is only 11 months, so while I'm used to having two dogs to work I am not in any rush to get another. Also, if I have pups I fully intend to place them with spay/neuter contracts. I understand where breeders are coming from and generally take the same stance. I guess I am just hoping that someone will give me a chance to prove myself prior to getting a dog and then prove ourselves as a team. Like I said, I have no problem altering the dog if it isn't a good candidate for whatever reason.
I have not put anything but SAR stuff and CGCs on my dogs yet. My older SAR dog was poised to enter the OB ring and was in agility training when she was injured putting her out of commission as anything but a beloved pet. Current dog has been in OB training since she was a pup, has her CGC and is now registered with AKC Parteners. So hopefully she'll make her ring debut in a few months. SAR has always come first for us so while she's done everything from riding escaltors, to agility in a collapsed parking garage, to riding in a plane, I plan on making the time this year to polish up a couple things and get her into some competitions.
White/cream may be the way I end up having to go. I hate the idea of the staining that will likely occur (I have white horses too, TX dirt is not fun) but since I will be keeping a shorter coat anyway hopefully it won't be awful to keep on top of.
Everyone Else- Thanks so much for the breeder suggestions. I haven't really looked into Kleins before (learn something new everyday). But having a slighter smaller dog is not without its benefits. Especially since I have a 60lb dog. Covers more situations that way
I just wanted to add a couple more names that I have come across while researching kennels.
Julie Tune has Alemir Poodles. She started in poodles through service dogs. I know they look for the same middle of the road temperament in a service dog that you seem to be looking for. She may have some appropriate temperament dogs but I don't remember where she is located.
Also Black Tie Standards in Florida has silvers. Some of her dogs do obedience. Can't remember her name at the moment.
Good luck in your search.