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Clean or Teddy face for Show/Breeding pup

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Leo (GSD), Lily (APBT), and Simon (SPoo)
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Did you take any handling classes with her? If so, did they teach you how to teach her to stack properly? A three point stack comes naturally to a lot of dogs. That said, it's rare for my GSD to actually do one. She usually stands four-square. :)
 

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First of all, the dam of this litter should NOT be being bred, period, never mind as a producer of potential show puppies. Just as starters, she does not have full health testing and has produced underbites in 2 separate litters. I certainly hope your mother has disclosed the underbites in this litter to the potential homes as it is their right to know in case they decide to turn the puppy down. Underbites/overbites can cause issues with improper teeth alignment which could require vet attention, issues with eating, etc. I would be really pissed off if I arrived to pick up a puppy, even one designated as a pet, not having been made aware of the issue and potential consequences.

I'm assuming she has not been shown to any conformation or performance titles either. If you are looking for a potential show puppy you need to start with one from a reputable breeder who titles to prove breeding worthiness and fully health tests, to CHIC standards or above, the dam (and sire if they own the sire as well) or breeds to a titled/fully health tested outside stud. You may love this puppy, but you are doing yourself no favors in trying to show a dog that is not show quality, or trying to market him as one who is. It will only frustrate and discourage you. Without his face being shaved and him stacked properly, it is not possible to tell what he really looks like, but given his background I would say he is not show quality. And, sadly, with that very short dock, as others have pointed out, even if he was SPECTACULAR in all other aspects, that tail will ruin the silhouette and picture of the dog, especially in the full show coat he will need to be shown in, and will only be even more glaringly obvious when in the ring against other dogs with proper show docks (which tend to be even a bit on the longer side).

If you want to show you would be best served to find a mentor who owns and shows the variety you are interested in and learn from them, from the ground up, about proper breeding practices, coat maintenance and grooming for the show ring, correct structure per the breed standard, etc. My current puppy's sire is one of Natalie's dogs (Ch. Natalie's BBBad To The Bone) and I know she titles her breeding dogs in the conformation ring and does all health testing to CHIC requirements, but I don't know if she has any type of mentorship program. Many breeders don't breed as their sole occupation and have full-time outside jobs so may not have time to mentor someone. Another thing to consider with a mentor/reputable breeder is they will more than likely be quite critical of your mother and her breeding practices.

As to this puppy being an agility prospect, have you trained and shown any of your dogs in agility? Just saying a dog is smart/has tons of energy is not necessarily indicative of a dog that will do well in agility or other performance sports. I've trained and shown extensively in performance sports in multiple venues for quite a number of years (agility, obedience, rally) and have done barn hunt, lure coursed, certified dogs as therapy dogs and worked with Alzheimer's patients, etc. Most reputable breeders do temperament testing on their litters at 7 weeks, either with Volhard or Avidog methods to assess which puppy should go to which home. This is especially important when considering placing a puppy for performance purposes. Also, most people looking for a performance/sport prospect want pups that were raised with puppy culture, ENS, bio sensor exercises, etc. and serious performance people will ask questions like that.
 

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@Jkpoodle, I imagine you weren't expecting this thread to veer off in some of the directions it has. I hope you aren't discouraged. If it's any comfort to you, the kind of challenges and feedback you are getting regarding your poodle goals reminds me of feedback I have gotten in the business world. It started with my college thesis advisors, then my early career mentors, and (more recently) committees within my company which are evaluating whether or not to kill a project I'm working on. Sometimes this feedback really stings, especially when it is unexpected. However, good information is always helpful, even if it is painful. The Vice President in charge of my whole department once started one of our quarterly meetings with a comment: "Thoughtful, detailed, constructive criticism is a gift. Be grateful when you receive it, and be kind when you give it."

Moving onto the topic of the decisions closer to home. It seems the root of some of this conflict between you and your mother is that her goals do not include producing show dogs. She is catering to a different market, pet buyers who want little red puppies with teddy bear faces. Ultimately, it's her breeding program and her dogs. Even though it is incredibly frustrating for you, that is her choice.

Moving onto the topic of this pup. It seems your mother's decisions regarding health screening, dock length, and puppy culture have closed most doors to a show or breeding career, at least as far as selling him to someone else who is interested in those goals. If you are very attached to him and don't want to let him go, then I'd join a training club and try working him towards performance titles. It will give you some experience and will help you build connections within the dog world. A mentor is more likely to take you on and trust you with one of their dogs if they have seen you doing good things with another dog.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Thank you @cowpony I have lately convinced my mother to just spay Ginger after I found that Alberto has an underbite too. It is a little annoying to have things pointed out that I know and that are out of my control. @Eclipse, I was actually not talking about a full-on mentorship program, more than a mutual agreement to learn from her. Her dogs are gorgeous, and I admire her skills to keep on being a good breeder when most of the breeders around here are horrific. I am interested in Miniatures and Standards, but it depends on when I get one. If I get one while I live at home, I cannot have a large dog (my mother was attacked by a dog recently and she is still a little timid around them) If I had a choice, I would get a standard, any day because I love larger dogs. What I am most afraid of is that if I get a dog while living at home, my mother would try to keep one of the pups, and I do not want that. One day she is going to see the breeders I want to work with and compare them to her breeding and realize her mistake. No, I have not done agility, I see my mistake. I feel partly responsible for these pups because I practically raise them, so any mistakes in raising these puppies are partially mine. I know that the choices my mom makes are not mine, but I should have known better.

Touching on the subject of desensitizing the pups, I groomed them yesterday and they were great! I ran the non-blade end over their faces and they didn't even pull away! I blow-dried them with the HV dryer and as soon as they realized that the Scary Snake wasn't going to eat them they were fine. To be honest, they were a lot better than Ginger. I trimmed their faces and bottoms, too. Is it ok to spay a dog this soon after giving birth? It's been 7 weeks. I appreciate you guys' patience with me, I am still learning. :)
 

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@Jkpoodle I think the modern era of social media makes it much more discouraging for people to get started. I've read accounts of how some of the successful show kennels started out in the 1960's or 70's. With quite a few it was like, "Oh, we had a lovely girl, so we decided to breed her," or "I was bored staying at home after I got married, so I went to dog shows." I imagine some of these now well regarded breeders made some pretty cringe-worthy mistakes early on. They were just spared from having these mistakes immortalized on the Internet, and they had learned to do better by the time the Internet came along.
 

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Luca red tpoo and Matteo blue Spoo
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@Jkpoodle I have no idea how old you are however, you seem very responsible. I can imagine it has not been easy convincing her to spay Ginger. I really hope you succeed in finding the mentor you are looking for. Sometimes the greatest knowledge, is knowing when you don't know enough. This thread has shown your willingness to learn. You started in one direction and have been able to find a new direction.
When I look for a breeder, I want a breeder who breeds to better the breed. Health, temperament and conformation, all proven through showing and or sports eg. Agility. Our latest spoo pup's dam and sire are proven champions with all health testing laid out for us to see. He was carefully temperament tested and evaluated before we got him. We were told beforehand, that due to American lines behind him, that his lower jaw would be slightly narrower during teething and his puppy teeth would need to be massaged loose but would not pose a problem. All held true and when participating in a show at 8 months, he was best puppy in breed and was Very promising.
The upfront dialogue made me trust the breeder, as she assisted us in our choice of pup.
So far, in this thread you have shown me some of the qualities I look for in a breeder. Keep following your plan. Find a good mentor and better the breed. Be honest, work hard and you will acquire a good reputation.
 

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She has changed her mind lately after doing some 'research' which I know is one google search and finding the ones that best suit her opinion. She is going to do 2 more litters!
You're not accountable for what your mother does. You've tried . Stay focused on your future and follow the right path. In my experience, there are always at least two choices, and the easiest is seldomly the right one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Thank you, everybody! I really appreciate your advice and encouragement! I saw Forever's pup Sharpie and he is exactly the kind of pup I want to produce. I am setting my sights on someday having the equivalent of Stone Run's dogs as Miniatures. They are beautiful!! I'm 14 and I probably will not have a dog until I move out, so it will be a while. I'm just trying to find out as much I can without actually having a dog. Apparently, the lady from Natalie's Poodles will be at the local dog show, so I'll be able to meet with her there.
 

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You’re fourteen?! Wow. 👏🏻 You know another thing that strikes me about your situation is that sometimes we learn what we want by way of what we don’t want. While your mom may not do things the way that resonate with you, she’s still teaching you. And there’s more than dogs to your relationship, I’m willing to bet, which is a good thing too. Lots of blessings in this situation. Best of luck to you on your learning journey.
 

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I've decided that I'm going to leave my pups with natural tails and dewclaws. I just hate it when they don't have a full tail to wag and use to balance. Do they get points docked for this in AKC? No pun intended.
The AKC breed standard says the tail will be docked, so you would not be able to show an undocked dog:

"Tail straight, set on high and carried up, docked of sufficient length to insure a balanced outline. Major fault: set low, curled, or carried over the back."
 

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Leo (GSD), Lily (APBT), and Simon (SPoo)
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The AKC breed standard says the tail will be docked, so you would not be able to show an undocked dog:

"Tail straight, set on high and carried up, docked of sufficient length to insure a balanced outline. Major fault: set low, curled, or carried over the back."
The only DQs are for size, clip, and color. An undocked tail would be considered a fault, so the quality of the dog needs to otherwise be excellent. And tails are docked a lot longer these days than they used to be. Will some judges think it a severe enough fault to not place the dog? Yeah. There are some who feel that way about the MCC, despite the fact that the PCA has said it's an acceptable trim.
 
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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
I can't understand why an undocked tail would be a fault because it is a natural way that the dog is. Do you know why they were docked in the first place? If it were for hunting reasons then I could understand why.
 

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I can't understand why an undocked tail would be a fault because it is a natural way that the dog is. Do you know why they were docked in the first place? If it were for hunting reasons then I could understand why.
Various breeds were docked for a lot of different reasons, some of which don't seem to make sense. For example, spaniels are docked but setters aren't, and at one time, you could have setters and spaniels born into the same litter, and the only apparent difference was their adult size. English pointers aren't docked, but most continental pointing breeds are. Doberman are traditionally cropped and docked because that's what the breed founder did. Old English Sheepdogs were supposedly docked so that they would be counted as working dogs, and as such wouldn't be taxed, yet very few other herding or droving breeds in the UK are docked. In some of the very early illustrations of Poodles some don't looked like they were docked, while other do look docked.

Fashions change. If you look at photos of Poodles from the early 1900s or mid 1960s or so, you can see how short they are docked compared to todays dogs. Grooming is also dramatically different. A dog in a 1950's sho coat looks very short in the leg, because they had so much coat underneath their chest, with not nearly as much on their head and neck. Today, a dog in a show trim has gobs of hair on their head and neck (and not always just their own), with the hair on the chest clipped shorter to exaggerate the length of leg.
 

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I believe the tail was originally docked because all working dog tails were docked in certain countries to exempt them from taxation. It just became the norm for many working breeds. But over time they were still docked to balance the aesthetics of the poodle cut and form a pompon properly. Some judges do fear that undocked dogs will cause a change in preferred structure because the balance of the dog changes aesthetically, and that's probably why there are hold-outs that prefer docked dogs. But I don't think it will be long before undocked dogs aren't penalized in the ring. Younger generations don't seem to care. You can always show undocked dogs in UKC where there is no penalty.
 

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Alberto's tail was docked way too short :(
This and he is short legged. What characteristics do you think will make him show quality? Have you had temperament testing done and do you have a circle of trusted breeders to give an opinion? More than likely he is pet quality, the poodle ring is very competitive.
 

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From what I can see, no points are taken off from a shorter or longer tail. It is mostly the tail set that matters. A larger pom on the tail would probably be ok for him. It is so sad to see my mother do this for money and kicks-and-giggles.
It doesnt quite work this granularly. Its the dogs overall balance that will be thrown off by the short tail. Something you can do though to give this pup the best chance at a performance home is following a puppy raising program like puppy culture and introducing early training.
 
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