Poodle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 77 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
54 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've attempted to type up this post many times in the last year and a half as it's a consistent problem me and Zael have been having.
Welp, I finally feel peeved enough to post it... 'cause I need a wee rant. I also have to know if this is a universal poodle owner problem or if I just live in a really toxic area.

Basically me and Zael, from time to time, will randomly be stopped by some stranger on the street that absolutely needs to tell me what they think of my poodle... most of the time it's something nice or sweet, like they wanna say how cute/handsome he is, ask me questions, ask to pet him, or to tell me about their own poodle/doodle... but more frequently than you'd think, it's someone trying to ether poke fun at my dog, or just be outright nasty.

The comment and actions that has sparked this threat to finally be posted today is that some butthole who saw me and my dog minding our own business in our local park, actually stopped his bike, went out of his way to get my attention, and then point at my dog while shaking his head and saying "What compels someone to get a dog like THAT?" in this super nasty and mocking tone. I was so shocked someone had actually went out of their way to get my attention, and then turn around and be so mean. I couldn't find anything to say back at him... I just wandered away mumbling something about poodles being hypoallergenic. It was only after the guy cycled off that I got mad and upset, I wish I'd given him a piece of my mind or been able to come up with some witty retort. Looking back now, I dunno if he was just trying to be funny and ended up sounding super rude... but ether way, it just seemed so inappropriate and out of nowhere. Not cool.

Anyway, this may be the first time that someone has actively pursued my attention to insult my dog, but it's not the fist time people in passing have said things. Like for example, I had some old man stop me to ask a few questions about what kind of poodle Zael was, only for him to almost violently refuse to accept the fact that my dog was male. Basically, in his eyes, Zael looked to "girly" to be a boy. The man acted like I'd just insulted him by answering his question, jeezo.
Another time, a woman and man where in the dog park with us and I over heard them talking about their Bichon Frise to another couple (I'm paraphrasing) "Oh yeah, you know Bichons. They're meant to be all froofy and puffed up but I don't do that. I just chip off all his fur, it's less cruel than making them look stupid" the woman talking then gestures at Zael and goes "Like that" before realising I was in ear shot and wandering further away.

I know it's childish to whine about stuff like this, but I need to get it off my chest because it happens almost twice a month, and I've only had Zael since January of 2019, guess I've got 14 years of this to look forward to lol.
Thanks for reading anyway, typing it out has helped me blow off steam and I am genially curious, is people insulting poodles a universal trend or do the people around me really need to talk a chill pill.

Feelgood Bonus: Overly fluffy Zael, ready to see his groomer who is thankfully re-opening next week.
98488801_4100014766690219_2989493676935217152_o.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,552 Posts
I am so sorry. Your post makes me so angry for you. I wish I could send virtual hugs. I suppose I've seen a lot of these sentiments in subtle ways, but I've never heard somebody say it directly to a dog owner. Zael is a very beautiful dog and he is very well maintained and healthy looking.

I do think you are encountering particularly nasty people. It sucks because even if you get 20 compliments and one negative comment, you'll only remember the negative because it stings so much. I think the fact that these people say things directly speaks volumes about the quality of them as a human being. Don't let it get you down.

With Misha I have only had compliments in person. Though when I had him in a german clip I did get a comment from somebody about how much they preferred that clip over more common poodle clips. I will probably see the same person again, but now Misha is very poodly with his tassels and pom tail haha.

Everybody has their own preferences when it comes to breed appearance. There are some breeds that I think are an eye sore, but I keep that to myself unless I'm talking to very close friends. It's okay for people to have different feelings. But it's not okay for people to be mean about it.

Recently I encountered one of my boyfriend's coworkers who said how much he likes Misha's clip. He said his family always had toy poodles but they never clipped them in typical poodle styles. He sounded kind of like he wished they had. There might be a lot of people like that who fear the stigma that poodles have.

Even on poodle facebook groups you see a divide. There's the people who carefully maintain their dogs and have them well groomed and in more poodley clips. And then there's the people who only keep them in teddy bear clips and state it like a badge of honor that they don't clip their dog "like a poodle." Occasionally more educated people point out that the teddy clip IS a poodle clip. Thankfully we don't really have that divide on here. Any clip is great as long as the owner can maintain it and keep the dog clean. I only get upset when the dog is suffering as a result of the owner's preferences and lack of maintenance.

Anyway, I'm sorry you have encountered such terrible people. Keep being a great owner to Zael and try to keep those positive comments at the forefront of your mind.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,543 Posts
Here is a suggestion - find some photos of poodles retrieving birds, herding sheep, working as narcotics dogs, etc. Carry them with you to show ignorant people how clever and useful a poodle can be - and how versatile! You can find a photo of Noelle with her service vest on this forum - Noelle is a diabetes alert dog who has made her owner, Click N Treat, able to go places and do things without the fear of her sugar/insulin balance getting out of control.

There is an organization called Versatility in Poodles that has many photos of poodles doing a huge variety of tasks. I have had poodles who were excellent at herding my horses, ones that were great ratters, ones that would retrieve anything. Years ago I sold a standard poodle to a couple with a toddler. They returned for another dog 10 or 11 years later and told me that their original poodle used to make sure their baby never got near the little canal at the back of their property. He would grasp the childs clothing and drag him back to a safe distance from the water. So poodles can be baby-sitters, too!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,489 Posts
Haters gonna hate. The dog is just an excuse. Three of my most memorable encounters:
  • Tweenage boy who made a point of telling me to go back to Canada as I was walking back to my blanket at the Cropredy festival near Banbury. That was pretty funny, since I'm not from Canada. I was wearing a cap with a hockey logo on it; apparently he was unaware that other nations also play hockey.
  • Pack of teenagers who surrounded me, jeering, as I waited for the proprietor of the B&B I was staying in in Newcastle to return from an errand & let me in.
  • Old man roundly criticizing my choice to read a Malcolm Gladwell book as I sat in a johnny gown in a hospital waiting room prior to a CAT scan.
I think, ultimately, the people who act like that are themselves unhappy and afraid. They feel bigger and tougher if they can put someone else down. They simply find something that marks the outsider --a funny hat, a suitcase, a book, a poodle --and use it as their excuse.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,042 Posts
I am a bit of a contrarian and vain about my dog. I deliberately cut Annie in frou frou cuts, then unleash her on the dog park to out run everyone else. I have seen very few poodles, and Annie is the only really nice poodle I have seen (mostly bybs).

I have had a few people comment on "oh, isnt it cruel to keep her like that" or "I would just buzz her off", but usually people are very positive and ask if she is a show dog, or ask me who groomed her (me). I smile and say , no, poodles were bred for the last 50 + years to be tolerant to grooming - with those fancy hair cuts, if they aren't tolerant, they dont show, and they dont get bred! I tell them Annie doesn't like her face or feet done as much, but she loves being brushed and stands like a rock for the rest of it. Then I demonstrate how you should be able to pull apart the hair and see the skin, and say its painful if you cant do that.

I consider having a nicely behaved well groomed poodle to be an act of breed ambassadorship. I have watched several doodle owning people at the park watch Annie outrun their dogs (and look gorgeous doing it), then have the woman of the couple say that maybe they should get a poodle for the next dog! I consider that a major success.

That being said, yeah, haters gonna hate. I get nasty comments sometimes about me putting her in coats and boots in the winter. "Its only x temp, she doesn't need that!" Maybe not, but I shaved her butt naked 2 days ago, the wind is nasty, and I want to go for a long walk, or there is salt and I want to keep her feet salt free. I also get nasty comments when I dont let her jump at the fence at dog parks, insist she sit, stay, and wait for permission before we enter, or dont let her greet other dogs on the street, or don't insist she greet people at the park (she loves most dogs but is pretty indifferent to meeting their people). Yeah, haters gonna hate is right!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
474 Posts
I never really got the poodle hate. Most of the comments I got was on her size. “That’s not a dog, it’s a rat” stuff like that. I never took it personally bc honestly before I owned Gia I would’ve never pictured myself with a tiny dog or even more so a poodle. When I got her a poodle wasn’t even in my radar and then the breeder really liked us and said well I think she’d be a perfect fit. She hid her bc she had other breeders trying to buy her for breeding. I instantly fell and love and now I’m inseparable from poodles. I don’t think I’ll ever own a dog that isn’t poodle or at least mixed with poodle. Until you own a poodle or have been around them more so than just in passing by, I just don’t think you understand them.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
23,194 Posts
Aside from a few encounters where well meaning people insisted that Lily was either a PWD or a moyen (she's 22 3/4 at the withers) I haven't had many nasty interactions with people. One was before Javelin was born. My mom and I took Lily and her small mpoo to the Finger Lakes for a nice cluster where Lily and I did obedience and both of us did rally. One afternoon we took them for a nice walk around campus at Cornell. My mom and her boy were ahead of us and when I caught up to them she was having a conversation with an older man. They were talking about dogs--his goldendoodle (not with him) and my mom's little guy. Apparently she had mention she was waiting for me and Lily to catch up. And she had also said Lily was a spoo. He looked at Lily and asked me what kind of "thing" she was. My mom said that we were who she had been waiting for. He looked at Lily again and a couple of more times noted that she was a "thing" and not a good looking dog at all. At that point I had had it, told him she was a very nicely built and smart standard poodle and said I understood completely why he didn' know a good poodle when he saw one since he was too stupid to have gotten one for himself and as I walked on he grumbled about how nasty a person her daughter was to my mother. Ugh.

One other really stupid thing that really annoyed me was one day when I was in Lowes with them and a man came to say hello. We had a nice bit of a conversation right up until he asked where I rescued them from and when I said they weren't rescues that they were from good breeders he gave me a nasty glare and walked away saying it was a shame I paid money for them. Uh last time I checked you could drop a fair piece of change on "adopting" from a rescue or shelter.

And this isn't mean but why do so many people think all poodles are girls? Even when I have Lily and Javelin together they still often think he is a girl. I think they are pretty obviously dimorphic. Those who realize they are male and female there is silliness since they either insist he is her son or that they are paired up to be bred.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,374 Posts
Zael, that must have been terrible, I would have been upset too. She is a gorgeous poodle, you are very lucky.

Catherine, that was a great come back! I just don’t think that quickly, I probably would have been dumbfounded and then thought of a slew of retorts twenty minutes later.

I haven’t encountered any meanness with Gracie so far. I bring her a lot of places too. It’s funny that she does get mistaken for a boy sometimes though, flowered harness, frou frou cut and all.

There are very few poodles around here, maybe that’s why. I do get questions like “Is she a real poodle?” Or “is she all poodle?” And she gets a lot of compliments and attention, so many people remark on how beautiful she is. Of course I concur! She is super friendly, and a nice ambassador for the breed.

I did have one funny thing happen. At the end of her first puppy class, the trainer told me she doesn’t usually like poodles but she likes Gracie. Strange comment, kind of a back handed slam at poodles, but I think her intention was for it to be a compliment. I took in the spirit it was intended and also took the opportunity to tell her that this is how poodles are when they are properly bred.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
5,221 Posts
I find this so bizarre, and also extremely sad. I'm sorry anyone's ever been so casually cruel to you and your dog. :(

I have a large social media following, which over the years has produced some thoroughly charmless unsolicited commentary from strangers, on everything from my looks to my life. But literally no one has ever said an unkind word about my poodle, not even when she's in a beautifully poodley non-quarantine clip.

And these are people from all over the world.

Hope there's some encouragement to be found in that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
So sorry to hear this. I’ve had this happen 3-4 times in the last 20 years. First time I was at the full service car wash & some idiot laughingly said something about my wife’s dog as I was getting my poodle out of the backseat. I lifted my shirt so he could see my pistol and glared at him, he slunk away. Another time someone walking a ‘manly’ breed made some comment about my sissy dog. I just smiled, took my dogs leash off and ran her through her paces off leash. He hung his head and walked away when I asked him to show me how well he had trained his dog.

I try to just ignore stupid but sometimes it is hard!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
505 Posts
Wow, there are some super rude people where you live. I live in the land of “nice people” or at least passive aggressive people who would never talk badly to your face, so I’ve never had this experience. I could see someone poking fun in a good natured way if Lacey was in a fancy poodle clip (which I don’t have the skill to do).
If someone had the gall to make a mean comment, I have a pretty sharp tongue. I wouldn’t be able ignore them. Although staying calm, giving a smile, and continuing on while ignoring is probably the best thing you could do.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
1,489 Posts
I did have one funny thing happen. At the end of her first puppy class, the trainer told me she doesn’t usually like poodles but she likes Gracie. Strange comment, kind of a back handed slam at poodles, but I think her intention was for it to be a compliment. I took in the spirit it was intended and also took the opportunity to tell her that this is how poodles are when they are properly bred.
I had a similar experience with Snarky and Pogo at their basic obedience class. One of the trainers marveled at how calm they were compared to other poodles. (I, meanwhile, was thinking ... if my pair of adolescent loons was calm ...then what sorts of nut cases were the other poodles in her classes?)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,899 Posts
I am so sorry that this happened to you. I'm both sad and angry for you. Some people are cruel, mean, nasty, and other things that I'm not going to say to keep this forum clean, and like hurting and stepping others so that they can feel good about themselves. I've dealt with people like that too much. (Hugs) Zael is so handsome!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
I've never encountered a direct confront. Your pup looks fine, and not sissy at all. There are a lot of hunters in my area, and they know Spoos are great hunting dogs. Either people swoon over my pup, move away cuz she's "over zealous", or give a stink eye as they pass. I'm thinking because I have a confident walk, a look thru you gaze, and a "don't mess with me" resting bitch face. LOL
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,645 Posts
Anyone who acts this way is definitely missing something, probably a happy life of their own, to start. I don't remember having this kind of experience with any of my poodles but I've had it in other situations.

One trick is, don't respond but instead ask them a question. To "Why would you ___? Who would ever______" just reply "Why would you say/ask that?", something like that. Hopefully they'll hear themselves before they open their mouth again. Responding with a legitimate and neutral question is a good balance shifter. You go from defense to strength.

In the second instance where they didn't realize they were overheard, just practice your pitying smile, because they'll never have the pleasure of a poodle, let alone a Zael :).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
761 Posts
Most of us walk our dogs for mutual pleasure, not confrontations with strangers. Those who do make snarky remarks are carrying a load of hostility around looking for a place to unload it. It's always satisfying to deny them that outlet. I'd smile and wish them a good day and keep moving.
 
1 - 20 of 77 Posts
Top