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Discussion Starter #1
Do you find that your Standard Poodles are reserved with strangers?

Rufus is. He will let people pet him, but he is not crazy about it unless he knows them. I was hoping for a Therapy Dog, but he may not be suited. Or he just needs more exposure to people.

Just wondering if anyone else had seen this in their poodle.
 

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I definitely think that the standards are a bit more aloof or reserved around strangers...but I also think that added POSITIVE exposure to new people helps.

Take treats with you every where the dog goes...and when he acts well...like sitting for petting...give him a treat to help him understand that new people are a good thing!

How old is Rufus...this may be a teenager thing that some spoos and other breeds seem to go through, but the extra positive experiences will even help with this stage!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Rufus will be 12 months old on March 31st. Is that a teenager?

He is not motivated by food. I think it is because he used to get very carsick and would throw up all his treats after obedience class. Praise works very well for him.

You know, I really don't mind him being reserved. But I think he might be a little fearful. We went to the park last weekend and at two separate times a little girl came up to pet him and he backed away like he was not too sure of her. My three year old granddaughter lives with us, so he is used to all her shenanigans.
 

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Yes that is teenager age...just keep up with trying exposure to new people. If kids seem to frighten him when YOU see a new one coming up take a deep breath and realize that YOUR nervousness might go down the leash to him.

Just think to yourself... "That is my granddaughter walking up to him right now!", and act no differently than if it WERE HER...I bet you notice the change in HIM in no time.

If you do not reward the fearfulness by coddling him (Aw poor Rufus, lets get you away from that scary person) but just act upbeat and like nothing new or different is happening and he will start to realize that new people and kids are no big deal! Most standard have a hard time being fearful or negative at all if their owner is upbeat about the situation. I know that there are exceptions like if the dog has past issues of abuse or improper socialization, but almost all dogs have potential to be nice well mannered dogs.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks IPP. I think he will get better with time. I will take your advice and be upbeat.

He did get a late start in socialization. He was with the breeder until he was 5 1/2 months old.
 

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T can be like this with strangers and kids. Iniitally he will be stand offish but if I do as you say IPP and make it lots of fun he quickly doesn't want to miss out on how much fun this new person is and comes around.

I think the use of treats with new people would work well for him too.

He is in a bit of a different situation too as when new people come to our house they usually have a dog or cat in tow to put in the kennels so he has to be put away, so he doesn't get a much socialisation as he could. We take him with us out in public as much as possible though.

Took him to pony club last Sunday and at first he was very unsure about the enormous dogs (horses) and their funny smells and barked alot :rofl: but he came round pretty quickly and ended up just watching them without all the noise.
 

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I only wish! when visitors come to the house the four of them sound like 20 dogs barking - they get soooo excited - Ginger and Teddy will bark in a protective way until I tell them friend and introduce them but they immediately get a toy to bring to visitors if they know them. OUtside - they are a little shy especially Ginger who has fear issues.
 

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Sam loves everyone and has never been shy or aloof. Jenny on the other hand loves kids, strangers or not, but adults scare her. She will usually let them pet her and sometimes seems to relax a little, but only if we are out and she is on the leash. At home she will warm up eventually, but at first she usually watches from a distance for awhile. I think some of the reason she is like that at home is because Sam barks when someone is at the door and it scares her, she hates it when other dogs bark and she cowers. The only time she barks is when she really gets playing rough with Sam. It seems really strange to us because its completely opposite from what we are used to with Sam.
 
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