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Discussion Starter #1
We recently adopted a mini poodle from a poodle rescue. It in fact a puppy from the puppy mill in Kaufman Texas. She was with the mom when we saw her, a litter of 4 her and the other girl are so much smaller than the two boys and she seems the most shy and/or lethergic of all the puppies. We cannot bring her home because she must be spayed before leaving the rescue, and she is not 3 pounds yet. We visited her and my daughter and I tried to put her on her back as I was told this is a good test of temperment. She hated it and stuggled until she was let up. She is always in the back by herself when we go visit. At first I thought great she will be laid back/quiet, now I wonder if she is going to be skittish and snappy. My daughter is 5 and is a little afraid of smallish dogs. I do not want a puppy that is going to end up biting but we are in love with her already. We looked for so long for a puppy and in the end after driving miles and miles for weekend after weekend, we could not find one person I felt comfortable giving my money to. So even though she is a rescue and they still charge a pretty big fee (500.00), I felt better for doing it. I am just concerned now about her health/and/or temperment. He is only 2.40 lbs and is estimated to be 6-8 weeks. Is this size normal? Anyone with time for a thought please let me know.
 

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Hmm, I would be a little concerned that she is always on her own and seems shy. The most robustly temperamented and friendly dogs are those that stick with their siblings and are jumping at the front to get your attention. She might be fine, but you might have to be prepared to do a lot of socializing work with her to up her confidence. How is she when you are interacting with her?

Our first PWD was the one always away from the pack and stand offish with people. While he eventually turned out to be our favourite ever pet, he was very aggressive with other dogs and actually a very difficult puppy to raise, to the point that my parents almost took him back to the breeder when he was 6 months old. We just didn't know how to pick a dog at that point and didn't realize his distance from the pack was an issue.

I personally do not like putting pups on their back. It is actually an incredibly scary position for them, which is why most of them fight like mad to get out of it. Hmm, editing this to say though: Perhaps you meant you rolled it on its back in your arms (like a baby?) That is actually a good test for temperament. They should maybe struggle for a little then relax in that position (if they're of a nice, stable temperament). It's the alpha roll (which is a dominant and aggressive roll) that I don't like. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Okay, thanks for that info on the back thing. I mean she is okay with us and pretty sweet but a little scared, of course she is in a shelter environment with lot's of other dogs , noises, smells, etc. not the best. She actually has fallen asleep twice in my daughtrs lap, she is always a bit shy but thinking back now it is just the last two visits where she just sits on the blanket in the back, almost like she is tired. I am worried about her but I cannot say anything to the shelter other than what I already said. She is legally their's still. But I would love to take her to a vet and see if there is a physical reason for her behavior. The mom is a little wary, not growling or mean but just quiet and looking like maybe she would bite. But after 6 years in a puppy mill I guess she has some issues.
 

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Here's a little more info from a link on choosing a puppy.

"Puppies should be confident and eager to greet you. A puppy who is shy or fearful and stays in the corner may be sick or insecure. Although some introverted puppies will come out of their shells later on, many don't. These dogs tend to be fearful adults and aren't good choices for an active, noisy family with or without kids, or for people who have little to no experience with dogs. They frighten easily and will require a tremendous amount of training and socialization in order to live a happy life. Choose a puppy who is happy and eager to interact with you but reject the one who is either too shy or too bossy. These temperament types are a challenge to deal with and require a tremendous amount of training to socialize."

It's about choosing a pit bull puppy, but really, the basics are the same for all pups:

http://hubpages.com/hub/Choosing-a-Pit-Bull-Puppy
 

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Okay, thanks for that info on the back thing. I mean she is okay with us and pretty sweet but a little scared, of course she is in a shelter environment with lot's of other dogs , noises, smells, etc. not the best. She actually has fallen asleep twice in my daughtrs lap, she is always a bit shy but thinking back now it is just the last two visits where she just sits on the blanket in the back, almost like she is tired. I am worried about her but I cannot say anything to the shelter other than what I already said. She is legally their's still. But I would love to take her to a vet and see if there is a physical reason for her behavior. The mom is a little wary, not growling or mean but just quiet and looking like maybe she would bite. But after 6 years in a puppy mill I guess she has some issues.
Haha, I just edited the back thing! I think I misread what you meant there. Putting them on their back is actually a good temperament test, it's just you need to do it so they don't feel threatened and can be a hard thing to do properly.

Hopefully there is nothing wrong with her, I would be a little concerned about her being so quiet. A lethargic and quiet puppy can be a sick puppy. Is there any way you can get a vet to check her out before you bring her home?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Okay, I see. I will try it that way next time we go. I asked the worker I was with today to please ask the vet to do a fecal and check her out when she goes in for her spay. She "said" she would, but she could forget. And that won't happen till next Monday provided she gains enough weight. Other than that I feel if I push they may get irritated and they are already so overworked and stressed. I do not want them to think I do not think they are doing there job properly. I already asked if I could foster her until her spay, I offered to leave a deposit, but they said it is against The Rescue policy. Still, I will have to bring it up again if she still seems "off" to me on Sunday when we go to see her weighing in. Thanks for the info. I am so glad I found this forum, I have been reading it for weeks now and just got registered.
I have never owned a poodle and do not really have much experience with them. I will check back with you after I see her again or talk to the Rescue Director. Thanks again for the help.
 

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In my breeder's litter there was the original female that I wanted. I went and visited the litter and she was very reserved whereas the other puppies were up wanting to greet a stranger. She was always by herself and seemed to prefer being that way. That type of behavior worried me and I eventually ended up with another puppy and he's much more outgoing. Because you have a small child I'd choose a puppy that's up there and in your face and wagging it's tail. There could very well be something wrong with this puppy since it's from a mill. You have a bad gut feeling or this wouldn't be bothering you. I'd say go with your gut the way I did and we (the breeder and I) felt better about our choice in the end.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Well, it is just that we knew going in, there may be somthing wrong, but we felt we could handle it. They will take the puppy back for like a month. Anyway, I would probably go somewhere else at this point, but like I said we have seen many breeders, (we are in Houston) and I felt we would be supporting some pretty bad things with the people we encountered. Also, my daughter already loves this puppy and I do too. We adopted her like three weeks ago and have been waiting and visiting. I guess at this point I will push for them to vet her, to be sure it is not medical before we do anything else. It does seem to have gotten worse over the past week or so, can a behavior issue change that much? I wondered if it could be a liver shunt, (I looked up the symptoms). I do have a bad gut feeling, but I also have a bad guilt feeling about not getting her and breaking everyone's hearts.
 

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Well one thing to consider is if it's a serious medical problem and you get her, their hearts would break if you had her and then lost her to something serious. In the Houston area you weren't able to find a puppy?
 

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It would be heartbreaking for your daughter if she already loves her. But it would be heartbreaking for your daughter and the puppy if you kept her for a month and then decided it wasn't working and returned her. Rescue dogs, especially mill dogs, often have many problems than require lots of work. Sometimes they never get over some issues. I would also look for a puppy with a more outgoing personality for a child.
 

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From experience, it's far more heartbreaking watching a dog suffer with medical problems than it is passing up the dog.
I'm sure there are members that can recommend a reputable breeder in the Houston area.
 

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I know as humans we want to pick the little shy puppy in the back because it hits out guilt button but you are just setting your self up for trouble. If they are antisocial and/or aggressive at such a young age its been my experience they will not grow out of it.

You need to pick a puppy who wants to be with you and is happy to see you, one that is wagging its tail and inviting play.

Personally, I would look for another puppy/pick another one of the litter (if possible).
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks to all for the advice and help. I think for now I am going to see how she acts on Sunday, and ask if she has been looked at by a Vet. I need to make sure it is not a medical issue that would be helped by medication, etc. At that point I may have to make a difficult decision. Thanks again. I am posting a pic of her, if I can make it work, in the pic area. She is sitting in my 5 year olds lap at the rescue kennels.
 

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You have a tough decision to make and I think you're handling it well. If you didn't have a child, I'd tell you absolutely go for it. I have one of those shy shelter dogs. He was a challenge and still has some lingering issues, but I wouldn't trade the experience for the world. Having said that, I'm not eager to repeat it either. I'm getting my next pup from a breeder, more than likely. I don't think he would've done well with kids though, but that doesn't mean anything when it comes to your pup. Do you know of a good trainer/behavioralist? Can the rescue recommend someone? Don't fool yourself into making excuses for her or thinking any problems will fix themselves. I made that mistake. I personally think they should be working w/ her more at the shelter, if they won't let you foster her. It sounds like she needs a lot of socialization and confidence building. I think being so young she has a good chance at normal life, if you get on top of things as soon as she comes home.
 

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I would not take that puppy for many reasons : (((. Rescue dog should not cost 500 $$ !!!!!! At lest in CA that is not the case :rolffleyes:. Here they charge about 100 $ for any dog (just to cover spaying etc. ).

Second - puppy could have all kind of health problems that can arise LATER since parents were never tested for anything before breeding.

Third- temperament of a puppy is far from being desirable : ((. She might end up being very snappy and shy and even have submissive urination problems later and other issues : (((. Since it is going to be your daughter's pet it would be heartbreaking for a girl to return a puppy after a month : (.

Just my personal opinion, of course - you will ultimately make your decision - just try to be more rational . It is hard, I know, sometimes we feel that urge to take a sickly pup to "help it" , "motherly" instinct kicks in , but it could be more taxing on you and your daughter than you could ever anticipate : (((.

I wish you the best of luck !
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you for the encouragement Harley_Chick. Actually the Poodle rescue director is a behavior/agility/grooming/boarding facility. I think she would help if needs be. The puppy is so young, she may be even younger than 8 weeks because they do not know the exact birthdate.

Wishpoo Here breed specific rescue groups charge more for their animals, at least that is what I have discoverd and more for a very young puppy. Of course they have already done a lot of veterinary work and microchipping, etc. Anyway I don't so much mind giving it to the rescue as they do so much good work for dogs that could never draw a fee like that, ya know.

I am considering all the angles and my last dogs were rescue and we were together for 12 and 10 years, so I know it is not going to be easy should I go through with it.

I just want to see if she is better on Sunday before I decide on anything. I really want her to have a chance at a happy life, too.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Again thanks to everyone for the support and advice...I will be doing some heavy praying/thinking in the next few days.
 

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First off i just want to say.....BLESS YOU for going with adoption!!!

Every member who has posted is giving you great and very honest advice. Whether or not you decided to get this puppy you can always use the advice giving in picking out a puppy anytime, from adoption or a breeder.

Adoptions like these can be very complicated and I am so happy that there are wonderful people like you, who are willing to work through what ever problems that can come up to gives these dogs a great home.

Like someone said, if you do get her, she is very young and as long as she is healthy I believe you can give her a good home. Puppies with this kind of behavior needs lots and lots of socialization with all types of people all the time. And all of those experiences need to be positive ones. Just remember be patience and take slow steps.

Children and dogs can be a handful together sometimes...I know...I'm experiencing that right now. Have your daughter play calmly around her and to just be with her without much interaction at first if the new puppy is skiddish around her, until the puppy becomes more comfortable. This shows the puppy, that yes, there is a child here and she is alright to be around and maybe I could start playing with her once I'm comfortable. After being around her for a while the puppy will get used to the noises and movements kids like to do.

With the right socialization puppies will be fine with almost anything and anybody,but you have to start early and be consistent with it. If done right, you will hopefully be able to avoid aggressive behavior too that might come up. But every dog is different. I wish you and your family the best of luck with your decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thank you so much for your kind thoughts. I did not mention it but one reason I wanted a laid back puppy is my daughter. Our previous dogs were on the larger side, and up in the years when my daughter came along so they never jumped on her. My sister and mother -n-Law both got puppies when Faith was about 1 and a half years old. They got a dacshund (sp) and a maltese respectively. Those dogs jumped all over my daughter and terrified her, they were small puppies, but she was small too. Well, too late my relatives realized the problem, but ever since then she is not comfortable with a small hyper dog near her, so with Star being so calm and them seeming to be at ease with each other during the visit, (after she was out of the cage). I mean twice she fell asleep in my daughter lap. I thought I had a good plan. It was only as I did more research that I realized it might not be the best. I really want to find out if it is health related, so if it can be fixed it will. My next issue will be following up on the rescue giving her a vetting.I so want it to work out. I really wish this forum had spell check...please excuse all my gram/spell errors.
 

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You sure do not have to excuse yourself for any spelling errors you may make, most of us on here make plenty of them, I use to keep a dictionary handy, so that when I wasn't sure of a spelling I could look it up before posting, but don't even do that anymore. I figure or what the heck it's not the end of the world, and figure that the spelling is close enough that others will know what I am saying.
 
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