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Hello to Everybody:) I am looking for some guidance from your wonderful members. This read may be a bit long due to background information but I have some sincere questions I wish your advice on.

My toy poodle passed away Sept.'20 at 14 years after a 2 year battle with diabetes. I am starting to think about getting a new companion. I fell in love with poodles. My Pip was calm, friendly, devoted, loving, snuggler, TV buddy, yet alert and up for walks and car rides. I got him at Petland - yes, I know not the best place - but we just clicked. He was attracted to me in the best way and I felt a connection to him. He was the "One". We had a very happy life together.

Now that I am thinking of another companion I want to cast a wider net. Do forum members know if there is any genetic testing for diabetes?From my vet I understand diabetes is common in poodles. Is there any way to avoid it?

I would be open to a toy or mini. This time the idea of an undocked tail and dew claws is appealing. Poodles are wonderful companions without those procedures. I read Canada has banned this. From an internet search I see some breeders in the US do not do this either. Some of those focus on perfornance titles. My concern is those dogs may be high energy with a lot of drive and not happy just being a house companion with daily walks. Should I focus on getting a dog from Canada for a companion? Do you have any suggestions for breeders of good companion poodles in the US with intact tails and dew claws?

Temperance is important to me. You are relying on the breeder to pick a puppy for you rather then you seeing what puppy you click with. I know there are puppy personality tests they may use to help them. But in many cases you are putting down a sizable non refundable deposit up to $500 and maybe the puppy they pick for you does not connect with you. What do you do then?

Much earlier in my life I had a Sheltie who the breeder picked out. She said the puppy will mold to you. It never happened. The dog was ok. She lived out her life with us. But she was never my buddy like my toy poodle. The opportunity to choose my dog is why I went the Petland route for my second dog. How do you navigate in the poodle breeder world to get a puppy who you fall in love with and who falls in love with you?

With all I have said above, how should I proceed in my search for a new companion?
 

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Welcome to PF. I certainly know how hard it is to say goodbye to a great companion. We just sent our 12 year old GSD across the bridge on March 15th. It is still strange not finding him in one of his favorite places.

I personally don't have strong preferences for a natural tail, but I will say I prefer not having to deal with dew claws. They were always a PIA with Peeves. I would not rule out an otherwise good breeder over dew claws and tails, but we all can seek our preferences but your search may be a bit broader of a net cast if you are determined to find a natural dog. I think it may be harder even still if you are in the US and looking in Canada. Just an FYI and other people may have more insight on this than I do.

Not all breeders pick puppies for their buyers. Both Lily and Javelin's breeders offered insights but ultimately left it to us to do the choosing. I think we did well with both of our picks. I did choose for active and somewhat drivey puppies since I did want to do performance sports with them, but despite that they both are good about being mellow at home. They are both chilling nearby as I types. I have had to teach them to settle when they are off duty, but I certainly did not teach them to be lap dog snuggle pups, which they think they are at 37 and 53 pounds respectively.

I am not sure I really answered your questions, but hope you have some insight to focus your search for a new fur friend. I wish you great success.
 

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Dewclaws are a pain in the you-know-what. They are also liable to injury. I worked in a vet clinic for 22 years and never saw a diabetic poodle. Maybe I was lucky. I saw diabetic pugs and tons of diabetic schnauzer and schnauzer mixes.

I know what you mean about bonding. It's tough as the toys don't have big litters so there's not really going to be a choice.
 

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Welcome to Poodle Forum.

As already mentioned, toy poodle litter size is normally only 2-3 puppies. That limits your choices within a litter, especially if the breeder has chosen to keep a puppy back for her own breeding program.

If I recall correctly, Canada's docking restrictions vary depending on locality; it's not a countrywide ban. Plus a lot of breeders prefer to do their own docking instead of using a vet. You would still need to confirm with the breeder the litter will not be docked.

I believe Temple City in Alberta no longer docks. Muddy Creek in Wyoming is another breeder who doesn't dock; I know little else about her breeding program. Moonrise in South Carolina breeds miniatures and small standards & doesn't dock.
 

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My border collie did not have the dewclaws removed because he was from a working line. The extra claw helps in sharp turns. After he was about six months old, I never had to clip his nails because he was so busy outside the nails just wore down, even the dewclaws. It has been shown that dogs with no front dewclaws have a horrendous time getting out of a frozen pond. The dewclaws help them to grip the ice.

If there had been problem with one of the dewclaws (too loose and liable to break off) I would not have hesitated to have it removed.
 

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Welcome to Poodle Forum!

I’ve hand-picked three puppies: One I had a fierce bond with, like you and your little Pip. One I did not. My current dog, I had mixed feelings about. She wasn’t the puppy I’d originally planned to get. I didn’t love her colour. She was, frankly, a bit odd. And on and on.

I love her so much now, it feels like my heart will burst out of my chest. But....it took a while.

All this to say - don’t get too hung up on that part. Chemistry is a funny thing. You can’t recreate the circumstances around your selection of Pip and your time together. This new puppy will play a new role in your life, which may not be immediately apparent.
 

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I agree totally with Peggy the Parti. The dog who was the love of my life was 1 of 2. I took her as she was obviously the dominant one and the other was going to a family with kids, and I thought the calmer one would be more appropriate for small kids.
 

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My border collie did not have the dewclaws removed because he was from a working line. The extra claw helps in sharp turns. After he was about six months old, I never had to clip his nails because he was so busy outside the nails just wore down, even the dewclaws. It has been shown that dogs with no front dewclaws have a horrendous time getting out of a frozen pond. The dewclaws help them to grip the ice.

If there had been problem with one of the dewclaws (too loose and liable to break off) I would not have hesitated to have it removed.
The problem is that removing dew claws on an older dog is a big deal. They are easily removed on a 3-4 day old puppy. I have to question the idea that dewclaws help a dog get out of a frozen pond. First of all, that's a pretty rare occurrence, so I seriously doubt there is sufficient data to make a decision.
 

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Great info here. I have a dog that was breeder-chosen as a puppy and I really love him. He was from a litter of four so not much choice but I wanted the breeder to select since she knew them best. It is a good idea to ask a breeder about the possibility of a dog not bonding with you. They may have a solution. But generally I think it is quite rare.

My dog has dewclaws but a docked tail. It was very low on the priority list. I like the dewclaws intact and would have been happy with an undocked tail but really it is just not that important compared to other things that vary between breeders. A proper poodle tail has a long dock and most people aren't aware Misha's tail is actually docked. For the dews I find them annoying to groom around but other than that we have so far only had one broken nail that healed perfectly fine.
 

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Welcome to PF.

I'm sorry to hear of your Pip having to leave you. They take a part of our heart with them but eventually being ready to add more four-footed love only shows honor to the love shared before.

I'm not aware of any genetic testing for diabetes in dogs. Autoimmune diseases are in the poodle breed, and others, but any testing is no different from humans. You can run lab tests and diagnose from there, if there's anything to diagnose, but no DNA test exists to show will/won't regardless. By going with a quality breeder, they will know if diabetes runs in the lines, and more likely, will try to avoid breeding dogs known to have the condition.

As mentioned, the ban on docking tails and dew claws isn't 100% in Canada, and you do have a few breeders in the US who're moving away from both but it's not common. You're a bit more likely to find a breeder who'll do a longer dock but they're unlikely to do it for a single pup.

You're running into a sort of Catch-22 situation.

For your pups best life long health, you'll want to have a pup from a breeder who's doing the proper health testing of dams and sires for breed and variety for the common diseases which can be tested. That's almost guaranteed to be what I call a quality, conscientious breeder. That level of breeder will likely be showing their dogs or participating in other activities to show the soundness of their dogs, and that those dogs are to the breed standard. That means that tails will be docked and dew claws usually removed.

You mention too that the breeders who you've found that aren't docking may be breeding performance dogs with probably higher energy and drive. That's likely true but doesn't rule out a lower energy, less drivey puppy in any litter. The breeder spends virtually all of every day with those pups from the time they're born til they go to their new homes. This is why they'll discuss with you what you want in a pup and then some either outright select or help you choose the pup with the temperament you want. This will likely be true with most quality breeders. I think they do this to avoid disappointment and the possibility of rehoming when the pup chosen by the new family turns out not to be a good fit.

(This isn't exactly what you mean by finding a pup you click with, but touches on that, and it's funny and true at the same time The tragic myth of being "chosen" by a puppy | RufflySpeaking.)

It's understandable to have these preferences but be aware that having less flexibility will really limit your choices in quality breeders, the ones who have not only your poodle's best interests at heart but the breed itself as well.

You were pretty lucky with Pip, many of us have been with pups that came from breeders where profit meant more than the poodles, but given a choice, I'd want the quality breeder backing me.

You may find the breeder of your dreams, best health odds for your pup, tail and dew claws to your preference, hands off in choosing.

If you don't find that breeder, what are you comfortable compromising on?
 

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I’ve picked a puppy, my first one as an adult, at six weeks with the Volhard’s puppy attitude test : https://www.searchdogs.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Volhard-Puppy-Aptitude-Test.pdf

He was the best dog I’ve ever had in all aspects, but he was also the dog I put the most training efforts on, because I was a student at the time and lived in a busy city with lots of parks and distractions. I was young and taking my dog everywhere.

After that I just bought whatever dog was available as I was sometimes looking for puppies but also for older dogs. My only criteria is that the dog be calm. I could not live with a hyper dog, but any calm dog I know I will bond with, no matter what the personality. So if you have one important criteria like that and tell the breeder, I don’t see how anyone, even an inexperienced breeder, could not know what puppy is right for you.

As for poodles with diabetes, I’m on many poodles groups on Facebook and even on this forum, I don’t remember this being mentioned as a problem. I’ve had three poodles and none had diabetes either. I think the fact that you bought a dog from Petland, who most probably buys from backyard breeder, as a lot to do with it.
 

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Johanna, you can find video on youtube.com of dogs climbing on the ice to get out of a pond. One lovely day my border collie fell through the ice. It was just like in the video. If not for the dewclaws I would have been jumping into the pond to save him. It would be okay because my husband was there and he would have jumped in to save me. The grandkids were there and they would have jumped in to save us all, except for one who would have enough sense to run to the neighbor.
 
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