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Hello Everyone,

First of all, I am so grateful for this site! As a first time Poodle owner, I really appreciate this resource. Our new dog, Cricket, is an absolute delight. At least, I think so. Unfortunately, my husband really can't stand her. He was opposed to getting a Spoo but I had my heart completely set on it and he was willing to go ahead with it to make me happy. I was SURE he would fall in love with the breed once he got to know her. However, they have not bonded at all. We've had her for over 6 weeks and he just told me his life is markedly worse since we got her. I mean, she's a puppy, so she is going to have behaviors to work on and learn, but I know she is super smart and is learning fast. The problem is that I love her, so I'm willing to put up with and work through puppy behavior. He does not like her, so everything naughty she does just gets him even more angry. I also have two daughter, ages 3 and 6, who adore her. I'm afraid my husband's negativity toward Cricket is going to influence how my daughters view their dog (especially my older daughter who idolizes her dad and shapes her interests around his).

Has anyone else gone through something similar and can offer some advice or words of encouragement? I keep trying to encourage my husband to play with/train Cricket to encourage bonding, but then I end of getting even more frustrated because his "play" just riles her up and he is not being consistent with training. Sigh.

I may need a marriage counselling forum more than a Poodle forum, but I'm hoping someone here might be able to tell me about a partner who eventually came around to loving their pup.

Thanks for reading.
 

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When I used to be part of a training yard, we often saw couples who did not see eye to eye about the puppy. The best thing was to have the reluctant partner handle the dog at obedience class. It seemed to help to be getting instructions from a neutral party.You should attend with your husband, so that you will both be on the same page, but let him handle the dog... you sit and watch. Of course, that means you have to find a way to entice him to go to class. Best of luck.
 

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When I used to be part of a training yard, we often saw couples who did not see eye to eye about the puppy. The best thing was to have the reluctant partner handle the dog at obedience class. It seemed to help to be getting instructions from a neutral party.You should attend with your husband, so that you will both be on the same page, but let him handle the dog... you sit and watch. Of course, that means you have to find a way to entice him to go to class. Best of luck.
That is great advice, thank you. Hopefully as things start opening up more around here (COVID19) I can convince him to attend a course. I'm sure you're right that he would be 100% more receptive to get training advice from a trainer rather than from me.
 

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Your situation sounds similar to mine. My boyfriend is allergic to dogs and has always tried to keep contact with Misha minimal. He isn't a dog person, and is very open about his distaste for dogs and his preference for our pet rabbit. He understood that I needed a dog, and he said that I should get one, but that I shouldn't expect him to like the dog. I was okay with that. I did think that surely he would come around and like the dog too. Since getting Misha there's been some evolution. For a long time he would frustrate me because he would occasionally play with Misha but then get annoyed that Misha kept trying to play with him when he didn't want it. And he would yell at him. I explained to him that the inconsistency was confusing for the dog. So he stopped playing with him completely for a while. But then he couldn't take that. Misha is just sooo silly and playful that it's hard not to join in sometimes. So now he plays with Misha somewhat frequently but still maintains that he doesn't like him. He says he only plays with him to please me, but I don't think that's true. Misha has gotten better about respecting his space when he doesn't want to play.

If I asked Ben to attend an obedience course with me he would laugh himself silly. I don't know if I could even convince him to walk Misha. He will let him out into the yard to pee. But if I want Misha walked I have a friend come walk him! But interestingly, Ben recently has started asking Misha to perform tricks for treats. He finds it hilarious how hard Misha tries to please him. I've tried to help him improve communication because he kept confusing the poor dog. But Misha loves him and is thrilled to try to do what he asks. I've so far had Misha about a year.

So... it's a work in progress?

Based on my experience I would suggest possibly not pressuring your husband to interact. If he resents the dog it could worsen the relationship. If you alter things to reduce any "annoying" interactions with the dog he'll probably start to actually enjoy her more. But that's if I'm reading his response similar to my own boyfriend's. Is it that he hates having a dog or having a poodle? If it's the latter that's... :rolleyes:
 

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I wouldn't encourage him to interact with the dog if he's being angry and moody. It's not fair to the dog.

Beyond that, you've got a new baby in the house. Babies are demanding. This one has four feet and sharp teeth, and it's not a baby he made, but its still a baby. I would hope he is capable of showing this baby, and you the caregiver, the same empathy & support he would give any other youngster and caregiver.

If he can't get past the resentment then maybe you do need counseling. This time it's a puppy upsetting the family equilibrium. Next time it could be a sick family member needing help, a great job opportunity that would require you to move, one of the kids needing special tutoring, and so forth. The pair of you need to be in alignment on these major decisions. Learning to say no for the right reasons is a good thing. Learning to say yes for the right reason, and sticking by the decision, is also a good thing. Learning to support your partner and help them know when no or when yes is the right answer is incredibly important.
 

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I wouldn't encourage him to interact with the dog if he's being angry and moody. It's not fair to the dog.

Beyond that, you've got a new baby in the house. Babies are demanding. This one has four feet and sharp teeth, and it's not a baby he made, but its still a baby. I would hope he is capable of showing this baby, and you the caregiver, the same empathy & support he would give any other youngster and caregiver.

If he can't get past the resentment then maybe you do need counseling. This time it's a puppy upsetting the family equilibrium. Next time it could be a sick family member needing help, a great job opportunity that would require you to move, one of the kids needing special tutoring, and so forth. The pair of you need to be in alignment on these major decisions. Learning to say no for the right reasons is a good thing. Learning to say yes for the right reason, and sticking by the decision, is also a good thing. Learning to support your partner and help them know when no or when yes is the right answer is incredibly important.
Thank you for your insight. I think, like many people right now, our relationship is strained with the shelter-in-place orders we've been following. Working from (our tiny) home with two young girls and now a puppy is no doubt stressful for him (and me!). Perhaps when he can return to work (who knows when...?!?) things will feel less strained between us.

I think you are right about not pressuring him to have a relationship with Cricket and just backing off a bit. If he can agree to maintaining limited, but positive interactions, I am fine with that. I just don't want him confusing her, making her anxious or sabotaging the work I am doing with her. Like you said, she is a baby. I want her to grow up feeling safe, and loved and clear about our expectations for her. In fact, now that I think about it, I bet A LOT of dog trainers also serve as relationship trainers/counselors!

Thank you for your insight!
 

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Your situation sounds similar to mine. My boyfriend is allergic to dogs and has always tried to keep contact with Misha minimal. He isn't a dog person, and is very open about his distaste for dogs and his preference for our pet rabbit. He understood that I needed a dog, and he said that I should get one, but that I shouldn't expect him to like the dog. I was okay with that. I did think that surely he would come around and like the dog too. Since getting Misha there's been some evolution. For a long time he would frustrate me because he would occasionally play with Misha but then get annoyed that Misha kept trying to play with him when he didn't want it. And he would yell at him. I explained to him that the inconsistency was confusing for the dog. So he stopped playing with him completely for a while. But then he couldn't take that. Misha is just sooo silly and playful that it's hard not to join in sometimes. So now he plays with Misha somewhat frequently but still maintains that he doesn't like him. He says he only plays with him to please me, but I don't think that's true. Misha has gotten better about respecting his space when he doesn't want to play.

If I asked Ben to attend an obedience course with me he would laugh himself silly. I don't know if I could even convince him to walk Misha. He will let him out into the yard to pee. But if I want Misha walked I have a friend come walk him! But interestingly, Ben recently has started asking Misha to perform tricks for treats. He finds it hilarious how hard Misha tries to please him. I've tried to help him improve communication because he kept confusing the poor dog. But Misha loves him and is thrilled to try to do what he asks. I've so far had Misha about a year.

So... it's a work in progress?

Based on my experience I would suggest possibly not pressuring your husband to interact. If he resents the dog it could worsen the relationship. If you alter things to reduce any "annoying" interactions with the dog he'll probably start to actually enjoy her more. But that's if I'm reading his response similar to my own boyfriend's. Is it that he hates having a dog or having a poodle? If it's the latter that's... :rolleyes:
Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. My husband actually does love dogs, he is just rather picky about the types he likes. I still have hope that he'll eventually develop a positive bond with Cricket, but you've helped me realize that I can't rush it. It has to happen naturally on their own terms. I will keep strengthening my bond (with both of them :LOL:) and focus more on the things I can control and not stress about the things I can't. It is just so difficult to comprehend that someone could look at Cricket and not think she is the cutest thing in the world. I simply don't get it!

Again, I really appreciate your taking the time to respond. Thank you!
 

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Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. My husband actually does love dogs, he is just rather picky about the types he likes. I still have hope that he'll eventually develop a positive bond with Cricket, but you've helped me realize that I can't rush it. It has to happen naturally on their own terms. I will keep strengthening my bond (with both of them :LOL:) and focus more on the things I can control and not stress about the things I can't. It is just so difficult to comprehend that someone could look at Cricket and not think she is the cutest thing in the world. I simply don't get it!

Again, I really appreciate your taking the time to respond. Thank you!
Of course! I hope it helps to give you some hope. If he likes dogs he will probably come around if you are patient with him. What types of dogs does he like? Poodles are incredibly versatile and athletic, and they can be clipped to have many different styles. He may just need to see this over time.
 

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Your husband sounds stressed by the current situation. The puppy is just an issue that he feels safe venting about.

Hopefully, life will improve for most people soon, and once he's less stressed, his attitude may soften. Until then, I'd respect it and help him avoid doing or saying things that can't be forgotten.

Few of us are behaving as well as we'd like.
 

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Thank you for your insight. I think, like many people right now, our relationship is strained with the shelter-in-place orders we've been following. Working from (our tiny) home with two young girls and now a puppy is no doubt stressful for him (and me!). Perhaps when he can return to work (who knows when...?!?) things will feel less strained between us.

I think you are right about not pressuring him to have a relationship with Cricket and just backing off a bit. If he can agree to maintaining limited, but positive interactions, I am fine with that. I just don't want him confusing her, making her anxious or sabotaging the work I am doing with her. Like you said, she is a baby. I want her to grow up feeling safe, and loved and clear about our expectations for her. In fact, now that I think about it, I bet A LOT of dog trainers also serve as relationship trainers/counselors!

Thank you for your insight!
This really resonates with me. It's been a journey with my husband and dogs. I brought a beautifully behaved senior mini into our relationship, whom he adored, but when he was stressed, just the sound of her tapping up and down the hallway could set him off.

He would slam his office door, ignore her, and just generally send out bad vibes. That sort of inconsistency is very confusing to a dog!! She, not surprisingly, began developing anxious behaviours in his presence, which is exactly what you don't want to have happen with your puppy.

The death of my senior hit him hard. While I sobbed "thank you thank you thank you" as we said goodbye, all he could repeat was "sorry I'm so sorry." And I finally asked him to wait outside while the final injection was administered.

This was a horrible way for him to learn a valuable lesson, but his patience with our new poodle is a testament to the impact Gracie had on his life. It's his way of honouring her and continuing to say sorry.

As already mentioned, doing a class together might be really helpful. Otherwise, that's a lot of pressure on you to communicate all training information to him. Consistency is so important.

And on that note: Your husband agreed to bring a puppy home and, by doing so, he entered into an agreement to treat that dog with kindness and compassion. If that means no interactions, fine. Ignoring her is better than confusing her or roughhousing with her. If he thinks puppy life is hard, imagine when she's full-grown and aggressive towards men?

Come here any time you need to vent or ask questions or share stories about puppy's progress. We're here for you!
 

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My husband was not thrilled with Buck. He was used to our late Scottie who demanded very little and was rather aloof. DH really wasn’t interested in getting another dog, because he took the elderly Scottie’s death so hard. Enter an exuberant poodle puppy, who wanted to be with us all the time, preferably the center of attention. The first thing that began to melt his heart was how quickly he was potty trained. Then potty on command. Watching me work everyday on training and then with a trainer, I think he got a case of FOMO. Who doesn’t want their dog to come like a shot when you call? Then he saw what an incredible watch dog, actually a listening dog, we have. And he’s quiet and only alarms when there is reason. He monitors the security camera in the kitchen. Of course, Buck’s sense of humor is not always endearing. “Ha! Got your reading glasses! Missing a pen, yet?” When an indifferent owner starts to cook for the dog they never wanted... It did take some time:)
 

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I always have to put up a little fight with my hubs on dogs. lol. when we lost Gia our tiny poodle, he was heartbroken. i couldn't take it anymore so I snuck out with the kids and drove 3hrs back and fourth for our Yorkipoo. I really thought he'd be pissed at me but when he saw her, he bonded. She's an awesome dog but, I still wanted a poodle again. I've searched for years, It took me a few days to get an ok for the tpoo we just got. he's not overly joyous with the decision, I know once I bring her home, he'll try to distance from her. I usually just kind of force him to hold our pups, and cuddle times for just them. I'm always home so I take the reigns on training. I know his pet peeves so I work on those first with house training. so may if you know the specific behaviors he dislikes focus on those first. I also have met some men who have a stigma towards poodles, I think some of them think "prissy" and not a manly type dog. My hubs was the only man who ever really fell in love with my poodle. The ex who actually got her for me didn't like her much and I actually ended it with him over Gia. I'm obviously not saying to go that far but maybe try some different haircuts get him involved by saying hey which one do you like, and show some pictures. I've always Gia in a puppy cut vs poodle types cuts. I've just never been a fan of the poodle cut. I'll say I also had a stigma towards poodles prior to owning gia. Now all i'll ever own is poodles, or poodle crosses. I've grown to appreciate the poodle cuts after years of love of the breed but my pups will always just have puppy cuts. i'd just maybe use it as a way to start a discussion to make him feel involved. I will say my hubs is a big tall military type guy so he'd get a lot of remarks about mentioning he has a poodle. lol. Then when his friends would come over they'd fall in love and say is that really a poodle. we laughed a lot about the comments and then watching them melt around her. I also don't crate train. I put up a little puppy playard and when puppy or us gets overwhelmed she'll have her own area.
 

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This really resonates with me. It's been a journey with my husband and dogs. I brought a beautifully behaved senior mini into our relationship, whom he adored, but when he was stressed, just the sound of her tapping up and down the hallway could set him off.

He would slam his office door, ignore her, and just generally send out bad vibes. That sort of inconsistency is very confusing to a dog!! She, not surprisingly, began developing anxious behaviours in his presence, which is exactly what you don't want to have happen with your puppy.

The death of my senior hit him hard. While I sobbed "thank you thank you thank you" as we said goodbye, all he could repeat was "sorry I'm so sorry." And I finally asked him to wait outside while the final injection was administered.

This was a horrible way for him to learn a valuable lesson, but his patience with our new poodle is a testament to the impact Gracie had on his life. It's his way of honouring her and continuing to say sorry.

As already mentioned, doing a class together might be really helpful. Otherwise, that's a lot of pressure on you to communicate all training information to him. Consistency is so important.

And on that note: Your husband agreed to bring a puppy home and, by doing so, he entered into an agreement to treat that dog with kindness and compassion. If that means no interactions, fine. Ignoring her is better than confusing her or roughhousing with her. If he thinks puppy life is hard, imagine when she's full-grown and aggressive towards men?

Come here any time you need to vent or ask questions or share stories about puppy's progress. We're here for you!
Thank you so much for sharing your story with me as well as your words of wisdom. It is reassuring to know this forum is here to share my poodle obsession with people who have it, too. Thanks!
 

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I always have to put up a little fight with my hubs on dogs. lol. when we lost Gia our tiny poodle, he was heartbroken. i couldn't take it anymore so I snuck out with the kids and drove 3hrs back and fourth for our Yorkipoo. I really thought he'd be pissed at me but when he saw her, he bonded. She's an awesome dog but, I still wanted a poodle again. I've searched for years, It took me a few days to get an ok for the tpoo we just got. he's not overly joyous with the decision, I know once I bring her home, he'll try to distance from her. I usually just kind of force him to hold our pups, and cuddle times for just them. I'm always home so I take the reigns on training. I know his pet peeves so I work on those first with house training. so may if you know the specific behaviors he dislikes focus on those first. I also have met some men who have a stigma towards poodles, I think some of them think "prissy" and not a manly type dog. My hubs was the only man who ever really fell in love with my poodle. The ex who actually got her for me didn't like her much and I actually ended it with him over Gia. I'm obviously not saying to go that far but maybe try some different haircuts get him involved by saying hey which one do you like, and show some pictures. I've always Gia in a puppy cut vs poodle types cuts. I've just never been a fan of the poodle cut. I'll say I also had a stigma towards poodles prior to owning gia. Now all i'll ever own is poodles, or poodle crosses. I've grown to appreciate the poodle cuts after years of love of the breed but my pups will always just have puppy cuts. i'd just maybe use it as a way to start a discussion to make him feel involved. I will say my hubs is a big tall military type guy so he'd get a lot of remarks about mentioning he has a poodle. lol. Then when his friends would come over they'd fall in love and say is that really a poodle. we laughed a lot about the comments and then watching them melt around her. I also don't crate train. I put up a little puppy playard and when puppy or us gets overwhelmed she'll have her own area.
Thank you so much for your response and sharing your experience! I appreciate it!
 

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My husband was not thrilled with Buck. He was used to our late Scottie who demanded very little and was rather aloof. DH really wasn’t interested in getting another dog, because he took the elderly Scottie’s death so hard. Enter an exuberant poodle puppy, who wanted to be with us all the time, preferably the center of attention. The first thing that began to melt his heart was how quickly he was potty trained. Then potty on command. Watching me work everyday on training and then with a trainer, I think he got a case of FOMO. Who doesn’t want their dog to come like a shot when you call? Then he saw what an incredible watch dog, actually a listening dog, we have. And he’s quiet and only alarms when there is reason. He monitors the security camera in the kitchen. Of course, Buck’s sense of humor is not always endearing. “Ha! Got your reading glasses! Missing a pen, yet?” When an indifferent owner starts to cook for the dog they never wanted... It did take some time:)
Thank you for the reminder that it can take time for a partner to warm up to the new dog. Our last dog, who my husband adored, was basically perfect. He also didn't have her as a puppy, I did, so he doesn't remember the puppy year(s). I just have to keep working with Cricket, and hope with time he will begin to see how incredible she is.
 

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Your husband sounds stressed by the current situation. The puppy is just an issue that he feels safe venting about.

Hopefully, life will improve for most people soon, and once he's less stressed, his attitude may soften. Until then, I'd respect it and help him avoid doing or saying things that can't be forgotten.

Few of us are behaving as well as we'd like.
Very true. He is feeling extremely cooped up, and I know the puppy isn't helping. Thanks for your reply!
 
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