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Premium Member
4,011 Posts
Hi and Welcome!

Countryboy has a good suggestion for you.

The Medium size poodle isn't recognized in the US by the Poodle Club of America or the AKC. Many of the breeders claiming to sell Medium poodles are just breeding mini's to standards. That's not a Medium poodle. That's an inter variety breeding.

A very few breeders in the US are actually importing the Medium from Europe to try to some establish some lines here in the US. They will be registered as standards tho, so to get a well bred dog from a quality breeder, you'll be better off looking for breeders with smaller standards or, as CB suggested, mini's that have gone oversize.

You don't say if you have prior dog, especially poodle experience, so jic, I'll point you to a Breeder List being compiled. Don't skip the Resource section, if this is all new to you. I'm assuming that a healthy, bred to standard, temperamentally sound poodle is important to you :).

Fair warning, many new members are reporting that the quality breeders have waiting lists stretching in to next year.

Happy Puppy Hunt!

2 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
So I found a breeder in Georgia that focuses on the Moyen/small standard size. Have either of you heard about Music Box Poodles? She says she attained the medium size from breeding over the years and never with a mini to a standard. She also states that her poodles are health tested. I’m new to all of this. I’m not sure why I should be looking for. I’m not interested in showing or breeding my dog. I just want a heathy puppy with a good temperament. If y’all could help me out I would really appreciate it. Thanks

Premium Member
4,011 Posts

Health Testing Criteria - Parents Are Tested Not Puppies - Additional Testing
Health Related Publications - Versatility In Poodles, Inc.
Versatility In Poodles, Inc.

Toy Minimum Testing Criteria
prcd Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) DNA testing from an approved laboratory
Eye clearance by the Companion Animal Eye Registry (CAER)
Patellar Luxation OFA evaluation

Miniature Minimum Testing Criteria
prcd Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) DNA testing from an approved laboratory
Eye clearance by the Companion Animal Eye Registry (CAER)
Hip Dysplasia evaluation from an approved agency
Patellar Luxation OFA evaluation

Standard Minimum Testing Criteria
Hip Dysplasia evaluation from an approved agency
Eye clearance by the Companion Animal Eye Registry (CAER)
Plus Health Elective (At least one of the following tests):
OFA Thyroid evaluation from an approved laboratory
OFA SA Evaluation from an approved dermapathologist
Congenital Cardiac Exam
Advanced Cardiac Exam

OFA Lookup - by kennel name or dog name or registry number - Orthopedic Foundation for Animals
Look Up A Dog | Orthopedic Foundation for Animals | Columbia, MO

and this:
AKC Registry Lookup - by kennel name or dog name or registry number
Dog Search

Trust AND verify. If they say their dogs are AKC registered (which confirms that they are purebred poodles)
and health tested, they should not take offense if you ask to see the registry names or numbers to verify for yourself. A quality breeder is generally happy to share that info. They spent time and money investing in their dogs if they have and they like to show that off.

Re not wanting a show dog, that's not what the registry and health testing are about. That's about getting a purebred, healthy, well tempered dog.

Two more resources for you:
These are my preferences, they don't have to be yours but it's helpful if you understand why these things matter:

My Personal Breeder Requirements

My ideal breeder is someone who is doing this because they love the breed. They want to see each new generation born at least as good as the previous, ideally better. They provide for every dog in their care as if that dog is their own. They will be there for the new family, and stand behind that pup for it's lifetime, rain or shine, with or without a contract. They will know the standards and pedigrees of their chosen breed, health and genetic diversity of their lines, and breed to better them. They will know of the latest studies in health standards for their chosen breed and variety.

They will have as many questions for me as I do for them. They invest in their dogs. They don't expect the dogs to support them.

Breeding Program
! to maintain, improve, strengthen the breed
by breeding to standard, for health and genetic diversity,
and will prove their dogs meet these standards by showing or competing
or by breeding from titled parents. It's not the title, but what it shows
! focus is on quality, never quantity
! they do not cross breed
! they limit breeding to one to two breeds
! they limit breeding to only a few litters per year

Breeding Parents
! registry information available
AKC Registry Lookup
Dog Search
! not too old or young for breeding
! not overbred
see Asking questions from a breeder
and Frequency of Breeding a Bitch
! genetic health testing done appropriate to breed and variety
! other health testing by exam such as annual eye, hips, patellas
! results of testing on own website, OFA site or testing lab
see Health Related Publications - Versatility In Poodles, Inc.
and OFA Lookup Look Up A Dog | Orthopedic Foundation for Animals | Columbia, MO

Living Conditions
! in home with family
! breeder allows, even encourages home visits

! routine and urgent vet care, immunizations, dewormings
! socialization
! first groomings
! registry papers
! they will not require spay/neuter before physical maturity
! health "guarantee" generally favors the breeder, not the buyer.
health guarantee is no replacement for health testing of dam and sire.
beginning housetraining is a bonus
temperament testing is helpful

! individual website to detail history of breeder, goals for their program
! information on dams, sires, puppies
! no trend pricing for color, gender or size,
! no marketing gimmick terms like "teacup" "royal"

! Anything not found on the website should be provided by breeder before buying

If a breeder wants me to believe that they believe in their dogs, they won't stop the investment when it comes time to find the new families. If they want to cut costs by using free advertising sites like craigslist or listing on retail marketplaces like puppyspot or puppyfind, or other classified ad sites such as newspapers, I wonder what else they've cut costs on.

Contact a few breeders to introduce yourself. Even if they don't have or don't offer what you're looking for, it can be a close knit community. They may know where to refer you.

"I don’t want a show dog; I just want a pet."

Here is an excellent explanation of why buying from a show/performance breeder makes a difference to many. It's not about the titles per se, it's what the breeder invests in their dogs and the breed. They breed for quality and improvement in their lines and for the future of the breed. That they occasionally actually have a puppy that might qualify for the conformation ring is a benefit to all. It means they're breeding for better, whether pet or for competition.

"I don’t want a show dog; I just want a pet.
by Joanna Kimball on July 13, 2010

This is one of the most pervasive sentiments that puppy buyers, especially families, express when they're looking for a dog. What they really mean, of course, is that they don't want a show BREEDER – don't want to pay the high price they think show breeders charge, don't want to go through the often-invasive interview process, and think that they're getting a better deal or a real bargain because they can get a Lab for $300 or a Shepherd for $150.

I want you to change your mind. I want you to not only realize the benefits of buying a show-bred dog, I want you to INSIST on a show-bred dog. And I want you to realize that the cheap dog is really the one that's the rip-off. And then I want you to go be obnoxious and, when your workmate says she's getting a puppy because her neighbor, who raises them, will give her one for free, or when your brother-in-law announces that they're buying a goldendoodle for the kids, I want you to launch yourself into their solar plexus and steal their wallets and their car keys.

Here's why:

If I ask you why you want a Maltese, or a Lab, or a Leonberger, or a Cardigan, I would bet you're not going to talk about how much you like their color. You're going to tell me things about personality, ability (to perform a specific task), relationships with other animals or humans, size, coat, temperament, and so on. You'll describe playing ball, or how affectionate you've heard that they are, or how well they get along with kids.

The things you will be looking for aren't the things that describe just "dog"; they'll be the things that make this particular breed unique and unlike other breeds.

That's where people have made the right initial decision – they've taken the time and made the effort to understand that there are differences between breeds and that they should get one that at least comes close to matching their picture of what they want a dog to be.

Their next step, tragically, is that they go out and find a dog of that breed for as little money and with as much ease as possible.

You need to realize that when you do this, you're going to the used car dealership, WATCHING them pry the "Audi" plate off a new car, observing them as they use Bondo to stick it on a '98 Corolla, and then writing them a check and feeling smug that you got an Audi for so little.

It is no bargain.

Those things that distinguish the breed you want from the generic world of "dog" are only there because somebody worked really hard to get them there. And as soon as that work ceases, the dog, no matter how purebred, begins to revert to the generic. That doesn't mean you won't get a good dog – the magic and the blessing of dogs is that they are so hard to mess up, in their good souls and minds, that even the most hideously bred one can still be a great dog – but it will not be a good Shepherd, or good Puli, or a good Cardigan. You will not get the specialized abilities, tendencies, or talents of the breed.

If you don't NEED those special abilities or the predictability of a particular breed, you should not be buying a dog at all. You should go rescue one. That way you're saving a life and not putting money in pockets where it does not belong.

If you want a purebred and you know that a rescue is not going to fit the bill, the absolute WORST thing you can do is assume that a name equals anything. They really are nothing more than name plates on cars. What matters is whether the engineering and design and service department back up the name plate, so you have some expectation that you're walking away with more than a label.

Keeping a group of dogs looking and acting like their breed is hard, HARD work. If you do not get the impression that the breeder you're considering is working that hard, is that dedicated to the breed, is struggling to produce dogs that are more than a breed name, you are getting no bargain; you are only getting ripped off."

This doesn't mean a breeder who doesn't compete with their dogs can't produce wonderful dogs too. In a way, the breeders investment in proper breed testing, competing, socializing puppies, all these and more are like insurance for the new family. They're not absolute guarantees, but they can sure be a benefit.

She's breeding for smaller standards so the testing for standards is your focus. Ask to see the test results on the testing lab site or of OFA if she's registered them there. You want to see them at the source and she should understand that.
The health tests are to rule out passing on some of the more common, known, and life altering conditions which many pure breeds have become subject to due to earlier breeding practices. Standards particularly have been affected by the Mid Century Bottleneck. Look that up and impress her with your knowledge :).

Her dogs may be registered UKC which is the only other purebred registry in the US that I know of offhand.

What a lot of folks misunderstand about dogs that compete, whether in performance or conformation, is that winning and titles mean that that dog, that day, was the best of it's kind in that category. Why wouldn't someone want the best they can have?

Pet quality from a show breeder is the best of both worlds.
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