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My “mini” poodle goes to work with me. His name is Jon, and He loves it so so much.. I got this beautiful boy with my lady (love of my life).. he was born September 17 2019.. we’ve had every intention of getting him fixed.. now I’m having a hard time finding reason to because he is THE BEST BOY.. so smart.. comes when I call him like its the law of the world.. such a good sweet boy... not even a month ago my partner died in a random car accident.. he would rest with her Tuesday and Wednesday.. her days off.. and then come to work with me every other day.. now he comes to work with me most days.. i hear getting him fixed will decrease his energy level.. he’s the best boy. He would never run away. Like really he’s had a million opportunities. Is there really any reason for me to get him fixed at this point? This question feels so stupid but the amount he would never run away makes it feel special I guess.
 

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Sorry to hear about your partner. That must be turning your whole world upside down.

Did your breeder's contract specify whether the dog should be neutered?

None of the male dogs I had growing up were neutered. They were perfectly fine family dogs.

In my area none of the doggy day care facilities will accept intact dogs. I haven't needed to use doggy daycare, but it would be a concern of I couldn't work from home.

I've also had two recent instances where we encountered an off leash bitch in heat while I was walking Galen off leash. Galen is young enough that he was confused rather than ardent, but the encounters could have gone badly. Even though my boy is a homebody, I don't trust his future obedience when confronted with a deliciously scented lady dog. I think these kinds of encounters will increase now that more people are waiting until after first heat to spay bitches. What concerns me a little is that in most cases these bitch owners have little experience or guidance managing a dog in heat.
 

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Yup, what Cowpony said.

But first of all, welcome to PoodleForum! We are glad you are here. We love hearing stories about poodles, and seeing pictures.

It is not unheard of to not neuter a male dog, but it is a big responsibility to make sure he is not allowed to mate. It may be hard to believe right now, but I would put money on your dog not coming when called if he came upon a bitch in heat.

You could consider a vasectomy for him to ensure he is sterile. This surgery is becoming more widely available for dogs. Also, unneutered dogs are more likely to be attacked by other dogs. This phenomenon has been talked about elsewhere on PF. So, what is your dog’s lifestyle? How much freedom in the community around other dogs does he have? Do you have a fenced yard? Do you keep him on leash? These things should impact your choice of neuter or not.

I am very sorry to hear of the loss of your wife. Please accept my condolences. I’m glad you have the love of a great poodle as you live through this dark time.
 

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I'm so sorry for your loss.

The argument that our vet used when I asked him about neutering our first dog many years ago was that intact males suffer sexual frustration. Why put him through that?

What kind of exercise is Jon getting when he goes to work with you?
 

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Whatever decision you make now does not need to be final. I know several people who neutered their dogs after age 2 for various reasons - changes in behavior, concern about litters, failed show careers. Others have already highlighted the main concerns with leaving a male intact: contract with breeder, unplanned litters, behavior issues, inability to find a groomer/daycare/boarding facility that accepts intact males, health concerns. As long as you aren't having those issues, then I don't see anything wrong with choosing not to neuter. But those conditions can and do change, and you may choose differently in the future.
 

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I am in a similar situation. My dog is now 19 months and has no major behavioral issues. Lovely temperament. I love his energy level. Don't want to rock the boat by neutering. We are planning for a vasectomy if I still love his temperament when he reaches 2. I do not believe he is sexually frustrated because males seem to only experience sexual frustration when they are around a female in heat. And for him, he has even been around them on brief occasions and has not shown anything more than mild curiosity. So I do not think it is any issue. If I ever do have a female, I will probably arrange to have him stay with family when she is in heat until she is spayed, regardless of whether he has a vasectomy. I do not want him to be frustrated.

The caveat is whether your puppy contract required neutering. If it does, it is still likely that a vasectomy would be acceptable.

The Parsemus Foundation has a breeder directory for clinics that offer vasectomies. I am lucky that I have one 10 minutes away who was chosen as Misha's vet for this reason. Other clinics may offer them. I'm not sure how complete their directory is.


Regarding exercise, Misha gets an hour of off leash exercise and maybe 30 minutes of walking every day. He gets some play time indoors with toys, but no more than 30 minutes. He has a lovely off switch and sleeps most of the day. I do not think this level of exercise is excessive. I think if you want your dog to have a good off switch and sleep during downtime, you need to schedule dedicated time to give them exercise and mental stimulation. If he is going to work, I would probably try to give him some exercise prior to taking him in. A 30 minute walk is a great way to help settle the mind in the morning.
 

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Yup, what Cowpony said.

But first of all, welcome to PoodleForum! We are glad you are here. We love hearing stories about poodles, and seeing pictures.

It is not unheard of to not neuter a male dog, but it is a big responsibility to make sure he is not allowed to mate. It may be hard to believe right now, but I would put money on your dog not coming when called if he came upon a bitch in heat.

You could consider a vasectomy for him to ensure he is sterile. This surgery is becoming more widely available for dogs. Also, unneutered dogs are more likely to be attacked by other dogs. This phenomenon has been talked about elsewhere on PF. So, what is your dog’s lifestyle? How much freedom in the community around other dogs does he have? Do you have a fenced yard? Do you keep him on leash? These things should impact your choice of neuter or not.

I am very sorry to hear of the loss of your wife. Please accept my condolences. I’m glad you have the love of a great poodle as you live through this dark time.
jon is really never on a leash.. he hardly even wears a collar.. I do siding and fencing work and he hangs out with me literally all day everyday.. him not getting enough downtime/rest is more of a concern than him running away.. we thread a fine line with separation anxiety (me more than him at this point) but he is absolutely fine being left at home alone.. I probably do put a little too much trust in him but he ALWAYS comes when I call. Like since he was 2 months old it’s all he knows.. the higher likelihood of aggression from other dogs is scary because he’s fearless when approaching other dogs. I could see that being an issue.. sexual frustration is something I hadn’t really thought about. Does anybody know what the signs of that would be? Only reason I haven’t neutered is really just him losing energy. He’s a very active dog. He lives a complex life
 

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It's possible he's going thru his own grieving. Dogs will sleep a lot when not otherwise engaged, and he does need a certain amount of sleep, so try to give him the chance to nap in the daytime also.

Recent health studies suggest, that if neutering is desired, to hold off til he's reached physical maturity, around a year or so, but there's no compelling physical reasons to neuter. The vasectomy mentioned is becoming more known among vets.

I had my two mini boys neutered at just over one year old (we travel with them when we can and it makes it easier) and there was no difference in their energy level after they'd recovered. They're now three and a half and aren't as rambunctious as they were but maturity is the biggest factor there, I think. Just as humans go thru life stages, so do our dogs.

As for his recall, it's wonderful the trust you have built with him, but as you so sadly know, things can happen. You can't guarantee that something won't catch his attention, neutered or not.

Is he microchipped at least? I don't have my boys wear a collar in the house but it goes on anytime we leave the house. I have their legal tags, an ID tag, and the microchip company tag.

You'll need to decide the risk you're willing to live with. I chose wrongly many years ago and have never fully forgiven myself.
 
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