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Happy to have found this group of knowledgeable poodle lovers. After having three giant breeds, I am going smaller. The dog closest to my heart accompanied me on therapy dog visits. I have enjoyed years of obedience training with all my dogs, some at a competitive level. I enjoy obedience and would like to get further into trick training. If the puppy chosen for me ends up passing CGC and TDI, I would be thrilled. The traits of a poodle seem to be a good fit. With one exception. I’ve read that they can be destructive if left alone. Is it feasible for me as a working person to have a poodle? I’m officially semiretired, but work 3 to 4 days per week. I would be able to work remotely most of the time while he or she is young and sometimes take the dog to work with me. My husband comes home for lunch. At some point the dog would be alone potentially 4 hrs, have a potty break and a little time with my husband, then another 3 hours. Before work and after would be filled with exercise, training and rigorous play. Thank you for your honesty. Exploring poodles.
 

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Oh you will have such fun with a spoo!! Trick training has become a real passion of mine, thanks to Peggy. I don't even really know what I'm doing most of the time, but she helps me along.

The only challenge I foresee in your schedule is the potty break followed by another stretch of being alone. That was always the challenge with my last girl, who was half poodle. She would settle in just fine for the morning alone, but was more likely to be destructive after a brief visit.

Young poodles are extra challenging in this regard. They can take a long time to mature. But thorough puppy proofing and limited access to living spaces is a big help.

Honestly, I think you'll be just fine. Yours is a better living situation for a poodle than most!
 

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Welcome! I would add that you bring a lot in terms of training experience and that is such a plus with this Mensa breed. Poodles need firm but fair, and they will test you because they are so smart all the while being adorable. Great breed, in my experience a guardian without an insurance rider:)
 

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Thanks for your quick response. Countless people work full time and have a dog, but I always worry about separation anxiety and balancing giving enough attention. My giants tired out long before I did and we’re content sleeping 12-15 hours even when I was home all day. Tough transition. With such long lives, I want to be sure I’m committing to giving him or her a good life
 

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I think you will do just fine with a poodle. The time alone may seem rough when the dog is young, but dogs adjust. When the dog is young it may help to have your husband give a bit more exercise during his lunch break. Play with a flirt pole, throwing a ball, or playing tug is great for a quick energy outlet. After 6 months, my dog was fine going 4-6 hours alone most days.
 

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Yes to the lunchtime exercise. And have your husband mix it up a little, so your poodle doesn't start thinking "Uh oh, backyard time means I'm about to be left alone again."

They really are that smart! It's a gift once you adapt, but I've mentioned here before: I spent many nights during Peggy's first months researching "Least intelligent dogs" as escapist fantasy. Lol.
 

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Yes to the lunchtime exercise. And have your husband mix it up a little, so your poodle doesn't start thinking "Uh oh, backyard time means I'm about to be left alone again."

They really are that smart! It's a gift once you adapt, but I've mentioned here before: I spent many nights during Peggy's first months researching "Least intelligent dogs" as escapist fantasy. Lol.
Did you really? That's hilarious. I get you though. I know people with lab or goldens that have grown up to be fairly nice dogs with very minimal training effort. And I think a poodle would run circles around these owners.
 

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Hi, and welcome! A Poodle would be great for you! Just make sure you choose your breeder extremely carefully or you could end up with a Poodle who might be high strung, anxious, or anything else like that. Best of luck! We will be here to support you.
 

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Wow. Thank you all so much for your support and encouragement. I’ll be in touch with a breeder who was highly recommended. Will keep you apprised. Happy to be in the company of such a welcoming community.
 

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I agree with all the advice offered so I won’t repeat. You will do just fine.😊
You have lots of dog experience. My last dog was a Great Dane and I so adore Great Danes. They are giant goofy lap dogs. I miss him so much. Anyway, we wanted to go smaller too. Small is quite relative, isn’t it?😉 We are an older couple and couldn’t see ourselves raising another Dane. We are SO glad we have Bobby! We love having a Standard Poodle! They are definitely different than Great Danes! All puppies are take work, training and time but you know that. I can’t speak for others, but Bobby does very well with being home without us. We both work and we have good routines. We definitely spend lots of time with him, walk him twice daily, offer lots of stimulation but not too much. He is really good at being a “chill” dog as long as he can be by us and gets his daily exercise. Not enough exercise definitely results in a naughty poodle. 😉He loves adventures so we take him with us when we can. We take training classes. Puzzle toys have been a huge help as poodles definitely are smart and need to use their brain. He is by himself about 6 hours, 4 days a week. He’s our shadow when we are home but honestly, he really is excellent at being alone. He’s always happy to see us but definitely calm and not stressed. He has funny little routines when we get home. Always puts a smile on our face. He was crated when we were gone until just recently and now he stays in “his bedroom” when we are gone. We have a cat and I don’t trust him to have the whole house. But that’s ok. I don’t think he needs that. I never have to worry when he’s in “his room” as it’s dog proof and comfy for him. We do keep music or the television on for him. And of course during his early months we came home for feedings and potty breaks. I have the luxury of working only a couple blocks away.
I will be looking forward to your poodle journey, for sure! This is a great forum. It has helped me immensely!
 

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When j worked in an office, I originally came home at lunch to see my spoo. She did better being left only once than she did if i came home at lunch, and then left again. Mine does not like to be snuck out on, she likes to be told that i am leaving and she is to stay home. Otherwise i think she thinks her job is to follow me! Ymmv, but i think you can definitely work and have a spoo. Love the giant breeds, too. I think you will enjoy the height to weight ratio of a spoo, they feel like far bigger dogs than they are.
 

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Did you really? That's hilarious. I get you though. I know people with lab or goldens that have grown up to be fairly nice dogs with very minimal training effort. And I think a poodle would run circles around these owners.
I really did. Ha! It was one of many coping methods I adopted during that time.

But I've come to love how quickly Peggy learns. I don't especially want to do a gazillion reps either. My husband and I have both just had to adjust, as she's always watching and absorbing. I swear she keeps a little notebook tucked under her bed:

"Things I Learned Today
(whether the humans intended to teach them to me or not)."


By Peggy Sue
 

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Reading some older posts, I saw that some people mentioned their poodles dislike children. I have young grandchildren and shudder at the thought of a dog being anything but sweet to them. I am also hoping to do therapy visits, some involving children. This information is extremely disconcerting. Please advise.
 

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Reading some older posts, I saw that some people mentioned their poodles dislike children. I have young grandchildren and shudder at the thought of a dog being anything but sweet to them. I am also hoping to do therapy visits, some involving children. This information is extremely disconcerting. Please advise.
I would not be worried about this. In general spoos are great with kids. Sometimes dogs that are not socialized with children when they are puppies later do not react well when they meet them as adults. Other times dogs (especially toy dogs) may dislike children because of rough handling they have experienced. I do not think poodles have any special tendency to be poor with children when compared with other breeds. As long as they are introduced to them in positive ways when they are young, they should be fine. My miniature poodle is great with kids, and he loves to play with them at the park.
 

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Bobby absolutely adores children! I have 4 grandkids and because Bobby is young yet at 21 months, I still am quite careful and still use a leash when he’s around the 2 year old because Bobby still gets too excited. He is beside himself with joy when he sees them. We have many kids in our neighborhood and Bobby wants to be friends with all of them. I am hoping for and working towards the goal of Bobby being a therapy dog, him being a library reading dog specifically. Socializing to children would definitely be very important. We have a playground right across the street so that has helped immensely. Hope this encourages you! 😊
 

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My poodles breeder has young kids and young children visiting frequently. Its one of the reasons i chose the breeder. Mine loves kids, but is a bit jumpy excited with them if they squeal. Definitely, if socalized appropriately at an early age, a good choice for kids. Howver, all breeds of dogs can be nervous of children if they are not exposed early or if early experiences are scary . Find calm, dog safe and respectful kids to introduce the puppy to, and teach the grandkids good dog manners (again, goes for any dog) qnd you should be fine.
 

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Reading some older posts, I saw that some people mentioned their poodles dislike children. I have young grandchildren and shudder at the thought of a dog being anything but sweet to them. I am also hoping to do therapy visits, some involving children. This information is extremely disconcerting. Please advise.
I'd agree that ongoing socialization with children involved would be key. When pups are quite young they haven't really learned to be afraid of anything. Their mom keeps a close eye and keeps them out of too much trouble. Their play with their siblings can get rambunctious, not unlike children's play.

The individual pup's personality and temperament are probably the most important factor. Another is having that ongoing exposure. Children's high pitched, excited voices and quick movements can be startling, at best, for a pup not familiar with them. This is another good reason to find a breeder who does temperament testing.

My two mini boys were very comfortable around children as young pups but we had little opportunity once they came to live with us. Fast forward two years to a very nice 6 year old new backyard neighbor girl as unaccustomed to dogs as they were to a young squealy tornado :). With her parents permission, she comes over the fence to play with the boys under my supervision a few times a month. I enlist her help in "training" the boys for the first part of the visit then as they all settle a bit we have more active play. The boys often run down to the fence now to see if she's out and go to her on their own, if she is.
 

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Reading some older posts, I saw that some people mentioned their poodles dislike children. I have young grandchildren and shudder at the thought of a dog being anything but sweet to them. I am also hoping to do therapy visits, some involving children. This information is extremely disconcerting. Please advise.
I think it all comes down to whether you socialize them properly to children when they are still puppies. That's the same with any dog, really.

My too big spoos didn't dislike children. However, because they hadn't had a lot of exposure to kids, they were clueless about appropriate behavior. They simply didn't understand "people rules" rather than "dog rules" should govern interactions with small children. They knew better than to mouth or jump up on adult humans. They didn't understand these rules also applied to small humans. They wanted to chase and tackle and wrestle with kids just as if the kid was another dog. Since my bigger spoo was 70 pounds in his prime, letting him play tackle fetch with a kid simply wasn't ok. That whole issue was my fault for not socializing them better. (Although, honestly, I really only knew a very small number of parents with kids the right age, and none of them were thrilled about offering up their kids as puppy training aids .)

This time around I bought my puppy from a breeder who has a couple of small children. Unfortunately I lost several months of socialization opportunities to covid quarantine. I've been doing my best to make up for lost time by recruiting neighbor kids to play with him over the summer.
 

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My spoo was extremely wary around children. In fact, she barked and growled at one at a rest stop on our way home from the breeder. I thought we were doomed, especially because we don't have children ourselves, our local friends don't have children, and we have no family nearby. How was I to properly socialize her??

Luckily, I found an excellent positive reinforcement trainer and she calmed me down.

In Peggy's case, I don't know this for a fact, but I think her wariness was due to unpleasant exposure to a visiting child at the breeder's house. With our next puppy, I will be asking more in-depth questions about their socialization process. I recommend you do the same.

Throwing a puppy to the wolves (or a toddler) is NOT proper socialization.

I'm happy to say that with time and patience, Peggy stopped reacting to children when we were out and about, and will now happily (sometimes too happily) greet them just like anyone else. She just had to get used to their loud noises and erratic movements, and learn to trust that we wouldn't let them grab her.

Now I think she'd actually really enjoy playing with kids. Too bad we still don't know any nearby!
 
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