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Penny is a social butterfly, at least with people. She gets confused when people don't want to give her some lovings. However, with other dogs, she'll warm up to them eventually but she'd much prefer to visit with the humans!
 

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I know they're supposed to be aloof, but IMHO one of my very favorite things about this breed is how they love people and try to connect with them, even when they're someone new. Watching Liberty gaze deeply into the eyes of someone in a hospital bed while she's cuddled up beside them almost brings tears to my eyes every time. Maybe it's not breed standard, but geez I love it.
 

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I know they're supposed to be aloof... Maybe it's not breed standard, but geez I love it.
Several people made comments to this effect, and this drove me to the breed standard, which is always a good thing. :) Here is what the PCA/AKC standard says about temperament:

"Carrying himself proudly, very active, intelligent, the Poodle has about him an air of distinction and dignity peculiar to himself. Major fault: shyness or sharpness"

The phrase regarding "distinction and dignity peculiar to himself" also appears in the "General Appearance, Carriage and Condition" section at the beginning of the standard.

NOWHERE does the standard mention aloofness with strangers. If anything, the listing of shyness and sharpness suggest that excessive non-sociability is much more of a problem than excessive sociability.

The way I think about poodle temperament and especially the dignity and "carrying himself proudly" parts of the standard is that poodles should be pleased with themselves and comport themselves with confidence. They don't *need* to be friends with everyone they meet. But at the same time, they are so pleased with themselves that it never occurs to them that somebody wouldn't be delighted to get to know them.

I love this part of the standard and think about it a lot when training, because I think it goes to some key distinctions between poodles and other smart, biddable dogs such as Goldens.
 

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I too have heard alot that poodles are aloof and protective of their "space and people". It sort of makes me said when people say this as they have obviously not met some good temperament poodles!

My boy would be classified as a "social butterfly"! He has always been very people oriented and friendly as a baby. He was socialized a Lot too!! He is friends with everyone when out. One thing I love about poodles, or maybe just my boy, i LIKE that he does not run up to anyone and get in their face happy! I have seen this mostly with labs, and while i am glad they are nice and happy to meet people, I dont want to have a dog soo in my face. Riley is very nicely mannered when he meets people, and will naturally turn sideways for people to pet him. This helps especially with children as he is not in their face this way. It was never taught, just something he does.

On a walk or out he is very fine to ignore people who dont pay attention to him, or if i dont let him say Hi as we are walking. He will just ignore them and pass by. Im very glad. The other night though it was nearly dark out and a big man was walking in the park and passed behind us. Riley saw him coming and wouldnt take is eye off him. Even after the man passed us Riley was watching him forever! He Never watches anyone like that. He was keeping an eye on him for me. No growling or barking, but just silently watchful.

I Love how the standard says poodles carry themselves with a dignity as that is Exactly what i think of!!!! Sums it up beautifully!
 

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NOWHERE does the standard mention aloofness with strangers. If anything, the listing of shyness and sharpness suggest that excessive non-sociability is much more of a problem than excessive sociability.

The way I think about poodle temperament and especially the dignity and "carrying himself proudly" parts of the standard is that poodles should be pleased with themselves and comport themselves with confidence. They don't *need* to be friends with everyone they meet. But at the same time, they are so pleased with themselves that it never occurs to them that somebody wouldn't be delighted to get to know them.
I love this! Thanks so much FP for posting the quote. I'm so glad to read the actual standard and should have looked myself before responding. :doh: The poodles I love so much really do carry themselves proudly, and they are polite to strangers, but oh so glad to meet new people and connect with them. I'm kind of relieved to see that one of my favorite aspects of the poodle really isn't against breed standard!
 

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My 3 are all social butterflys. They adore company, going out and about, and they've never met a stranger, only a new friend! LOL Maddy (The Diva, The Devine Miss M) was with me 24/7 from the age of 9 wks. until 6 months old, so her socialization was awesome. She's what you would call "bombproof," nothing rattles her. Oh, and can she work a crowd! lol I don't know what kind of socialization Beau had, as he came to me at 16 months old, and had some behavioral problems - not w/people, but with other dogs. He LOVES to be admired and touched! Lucia is the sweetest natured dog I've ever met - with people, dogs, cats, even a bird at an outdoor cafe (nose to beak!). She is such a love, and people just fall in love with her (even non-dog people). She isn't the least bit shy or aloof, but she does want to get back to her mama, ASAP.
 

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Billy started out as aloof as a puppy. It took him a long time to warm up to strangers. He didn't avoid them but he would ignore them. I just kept on working on socialization and he came around so well that he will run up to strangers now looking for attention. We stopped by an elderly day care center today on an invitation and he went right up to the old folks to socialize; something he would never have done as a puppy.
thank you for saying this, I just picked up a 6 month old and he is very aloof with strangers, it gives me hope to hear that with socialization and positive reinforcement, he can be friendly to everyone!
 

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I always find it so frustrating when people assign a trait to a breed of dogs, or a country, or to a race, or to an ethnicity of humanity. They just are not true! And are so discriminatory. Just don't fall for them.

My Spoo is my service dog. He is way too affectionate to everyone, and every animal, in the world to be a service dog. But I would so much rather he be that way than aggressive:) I do think he is everyone's favorite dog in my entire little town. Everyone knows and loves him.
 

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I would highly suspect that any poodle with this trait has not been socialized before the age of 16 weeks.

Since I wanted my Spoo to be a Service Dog, I followed the guidelines for training service dogs, or any dog that one wants to be highly social. I was told to introduce him to 40 different dogs, and 40 different people of all ages, races, heights, with and without hats, etc, and other animals before he was 16 weeks old.

This was one heck of a lot of work!!! Especially since I got him at 13 weeks. But I did it, even introducing him to chickens, sheep and horses before then. Whew!!!!! (You have to give up work and socializing yourself, etc!)

But I am so glad I did. And if I ever get another dog I will do exactly the same. It is so worth it.
 

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Asta is anything but aloof. Confident as a puppy and confident now -not to be confused with aloof. Goes nuts when we have a visitor, barks at the UPS man who al;ways brings him cookies. All in all I wish Asta was more aloof. It would really help with his service dog training. We are actively working again on focus and attention to redirect his excitement to me and not the stranger or a strange dog, strange cat, strange horses, well you get the idea. So far this training is working well. So much of his job requires attention to me -that way he can monitor me.
 

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Asta, At about 15 weeks I taught the command 'Bark', so my Spoo could bark, and then 'No bark'. Somehow combining the commands worked well.

Plus, never... I never let even one bark go by but that I got up and said 'show me' so that he took me to the door, or the window, etc, and I could then talk to him about whatever it was that was exciting to him. So he knows I am listening to him. He doesn't have to keep barking because I am not responding. Think of yourself, or a child, saying 'look, look'.

People that just yell at their dogs to stop barking are actually reinforcing the barking.

Now I only have a problem with barking if I have been visiting someone who allows their dog to bark all the time. Then I have to do some retraining.
 

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Wow, this is an old thread. Fun to see it return!

Outside the house Pogo is usually aloof with people he doesn't know well. I'd worked very hard at introducing him to lots of people when he was a puppy, so it's not like he was unsocialized. He's just not interested in strangers. Snarky, in contrast, loved meeting new people. Given the opportunity he would pretzel himself up against anyone's legs, leaning his full weight and sneezing happily. I had to be very careful not to let him lean against anyone who wasn't up for the challenge of doggie full body hugs.
 

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Yes, the sneezing! What does that mean? My Spoo does that too and I haven't figured it out ... I know it is some kind of communication that he does in various circumstances..... not all the same...
 
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