I'm hooked...they really are amazing dogs
"Penny", the Standard Poodle we did eventually acquire is from Harmony Mountain Pudels out of Arizona. (HOW DO I POST A PICTURE????) All I can say is - wow! What an amazing breed, dog, and even the excellent experience we had with the breeder, Lori Horst. She was so supportive, responsive, attentive to every question I had. Shipping a dog from AZ to CA was not my preference, but it was simply the way it worked out timing-wise.
Penny adapted quickly to her new home. She and the Corgi developed their relationship and canine hierarchy. Once dominated by the older dog, Penny pretty much wreaks havoc with him today. Since we went so far as to get another dog, when offered a free Persian kitty (didn't quite cut it for Show conformation), we went all the way to bright and now have 2 dogs and a cat. Yes, it's sorta crazy around here, but I sorta like the chaos.
I insisted from early on that Penny get lots of exposure to people, places, and noise - she's been to San Fran several times, Napa, Carmel, Sacramento, and to most of the local restaurants in my vicinity that have a patio allowing for canine companions. She is very well socialized. I didn't expose her to other dogs directly until 16 weeks, but since then, the dog park is one of her fave activities.
Sorry, I have to brag - but I think she's brilliant! And, I'm sure every one of you thinks the same about your Standard Poodle. From the earliest time, I sensed that what I said to Penny, she understood! She's been very easy to train - "down", sit, stay, lay down, roll over. The basics, but she learned them so quickly. She doesn't bolt out the door, and she knows her place in the human pack.
So as not to sound like a completely delusional, Penny is not perfect. I thought I had the house breaking licked, and recently we've had our setbacks (hmm, maybe the introduction of another animal to the house?...I suspect). And, it's not that she doesn't need to understand and learn "heel", much better than she does. But, she is still young, and she's also just entering those teen years. Very vigorous and ready to take on the world.
Thank you to ALL of you who recommended this breed. I have been a convert since week-1 with Penny. It's hard to imagine my house without her right now. And, don't think for a minute that the concept of a 2nd poodle hasn't crossed our mind! But, I certainly have enough insanity right now...so, we will wait on that.