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Need some help deciding...hope you all can help

789 Views 13 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  Gemmagirl
Thank you for taking the time to read and answer this post; I could use some advice.I am a 73 year old single woman, the previous owner of 2 standard poodles.

Gemma, my last poodle, died during Covid, so that was almost 3 years ago this summer. She had very bad sebaceous adenitis, as well as stomach issues, not too hardy a soul. She was only 9. It really broke my heart.

My first poodle, Jaspar, was a big male, from a breeder in Mass, (Wendell Sammet) who did all the health checks, etc. Jaspar was a wonderful dog who was very healthy, but he was big! I was married at the time and the girls were young and everybody pitched in in his walks, etc.

2 Years after Jaspar died ( I was now divorced ), I decided to get another poodle. Mr. Sammet did not have any at that time and he sent me to Joseph Vergnetti, in Ohio where I got Gemma. She was perfect, because she was on the smaller size, still in the standard size classification, but petite. She was the perfect size for me!!! Really adorable.

However, she had a terrible case of SA and I spent endless time oiling her and bathing her, feeding her extra things it was really more than I could really do again, and I'm nervous I could end up with yet another standard who got SA or some other illness, it troubles me.

Also, because I am older and only getting older !!!, I would like a smaller standard. The miniatures seem a bit TOO small, but are smaller standards more susceptible for illnesses? Maybe Gemma was small because she might have been the runt of the litter and more sickly? You can see I am grasping at straws here on why she was not very healthy.....

So thats the back story. I am hoping that you might help me with:

Am I too old to get a standard? I am pretty energetic, I play tennis and pickleball and walk alot, but as I say, I will only get older. And I do live on my own.

Would it be better to get a male or a female at my age? Does the sex make any difference in their energy level?

How can I find a breeder who does ALL the testing, but that ALSO might have smaller Standards?

What is the most amount of time anyone has left their Standard ( to go on vacation)? I might have to occasionally go away.

Thank you all very much, I have been struggling with this for 2 plus years now, and maybe because I have not leaped forward to get another poodle is a sign......?
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We went thru this self assessment 3 years ago, as the miniature poodle we had adopted from the animal shelter was declining in health. I am in my 80's my wife in her mid 70's. She had standard poodles when growing up and we have had labs during our 48 year marriage. We definitely wanted a large miniature, with good health testing and a good genetic background. Our "Gigi" fit all of these. She is just under 15" and 16 lbs. She is very cautious not to interfere with our walking or "get in our way". She was easy to train, and a perfect dog for us. We prefer females and have them spayed after the first cycle. I don't believe that sex has much to do with energy levels, but does have to do with disposition, although it is certainly a variable trait. We have always taken our dogs with us as we have traveled, had a house sitter/dog sitter, or let trusted friends (with comparable dogs) to keep our dogs if we cannot take them with us--but we pretty much tailor our activities to include our dogs. The subject of our age comes up--and before we brought Gigi into our lives we had an arrangement for a younger trusted person to care for her if we were not able. That person has been involved with her life from the time we adopted her. Gigi will have a trust fund to make sure she gets the best of care if anything happens to us.
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