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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone,

I am a wannabe first time poodle owner and have been looking for a poodle and getting educated about breeders for a few months now - thanks to many of you - websites and speaking with breeders. I live near Chicago, and tomorrow night we will be starting a stay-at-home order, which prevents any non-essential travel. So my son came home, I've had to cancel trips and it looks like now would be an great time to get a pup since we can't do anything but go for walks, build a good fence and stay at home. I had hoped to sign up for an Arreau pup, but now with the Canadian border closed, we can't travel for who knows how long. So for the last few days I've started looking closer to home.
I was on the Northern IL Poodle FB page, and a woman posted that she has some pups. I went to her website, Red Door Poodles, it looks like the dogs are lovingly raised at home and have attended obedience classes-- basically what i would do, or the least that i would do.. The owner told me they tested with paw print genetics for a full poodle panel, which she says the parents cleared. and she says she has the parents pedigrees which show that they aren't related back 5 generations. but none of that info or details are on the website. Of the two pups available, the darker red poodle costs more than the lighter red one, when i asked about personalities she says that the darker one is more laid back, friendly but not the first to do something and the lighter one is shy at first, but feisty and loves to play with tennis balls and ropes and also loves attention.
ahh, it's not the puppy culture i had in mind after I started learning about poodle breeding, but now with the economy coming to a recession, and the travel ban ahead... I'm doubting myself. Oh, and the breeder says that one of her dogs just happens to be being delivered tomorrow to another family just 45 min away, so I could get it tomorrow...

Poodle people what do you think? am i being overly cautious? This is so temping bc I want pup, but.. thank you!
 

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Tempting as this is, I wouldn’t buy from this place. Lots of red flags.

The most difficult part is you won’t be able to properly socialize your new puppy.

Buying a puppy safely - the basics. I highly recommend reading it.
 

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I would suggest waiting as well. I visited their website, and I am not impressed with the grooming of their pups (pups without shaved faces) and also some of their adult dogs. Additionally, I find it odd that they show a picture of their females, but not the "stud"- which they refer to as "chocolate"- not a poodle color. I would want to visit, meet the parents, and see the environment they were raised in. Also, differing price based on personality doesn't sit well with me. Just my thoughts.

Have you thought about getting on a waitlist for Farleys, NOLA, or Arreau? This health crisis has to end at some point.

I wish you luck with your puppy search and good health to you and your family.
 

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Tempting as this is, I wouldn’t buy from this place. Lots of red flags.

The most difficult part is you won’t be able to properly socialize your new puppy.

Buying a puppy safely - the basics. I highly recommend reading it.
Thank you! Just as I was coming back to look for responses, I saw this on the site and thought I should re-read it! how could i have forgotten?!.. so sobering.
 

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I'm with Skylar. It will be very difficult to socialize a puppy for the next couple months. Additionally, there are some things about this breeder that wouldn't meet my desires in a poodle breeder. Some minor, but a few are major. I will provide details in the hopes that it may aid your search.

-No OFA orthopedic health testing (I say this based on lack of info on her site, all marketplace postings, and searches on OFA using both their kennel name and the stud's kennel name (and stud's actual name). For standard poodles hip dysplasia is a big enough concern that it is a good idea to have fully tested parents.

-Require spay/neuter by 6 months in the puppy contract. For me this is actually the #1 issue. All current studies on standard poodles recommend waiting until maturity to sterilize. The very earliest that growth may be sufficient is generally considered to be 12 months, though 18-24 months is considered preferable for full growth completion.

-Another puppy contract issue... I'll put a direct quote.

"The Buyer has 72 hours in which he/she is encouraged to have the puppy examined by a certified Veterinarian. If the veterinarian finds anything seriously wrong (related to bloodlines only) with the puppy, it will be exchanged for a similar pup from stock on hand, or from expected litters as soon as possible. The Buyer must return the puppy and all the paperwork to the Seller with a signed letter from the Veterinarian with the name, address, phone number, and the defect detected, before any replacement will be made. The Seller reserves the right for a second opinion from another Veterinarian if within 72 hours from the purchase date the puppy dies. An autopsy must be obtained (at the Buyer’s expense) to determine the cause of death. A replacement puppy will be given ONLY if death is caused by a hereditary factor."

To me, this is worrisome because... say you get the puppy and then within hours it's clear it has come down with parvo. You take it to the vet, they verify it has parvo, and are unable to treat it successfully. Puppy passes... and breeder won't do anything. Because it wasn't a hereditary issue. And that is ALL there is in terms of health guarantees. This is not typical for contracts. Usually from what I've seen, there's a 72 hour window to have the pup seen by a veterinarian and if the pup is found to be ill, it can be returned for a refund or replacement. And then there's often an additional guarantee against congenital defects that's typically 6 months to 2 years. But Red Door's contract is only for congenital defects and only for 72 hours. This is a bit frightening.

Aside from these things, the more minor things I don't like. First, I also will join the crowd that ungroomed pups aren't ideal. Also, this breeder advertises on NextDayPets and PuppyFind. I don't know about NextDayPets but I know PuppyFind has a poor reputation because they remove all negative reviews. I was able to find that it seems some (could be all) of their poodles are AKC registered. I don't see any titles on any of them. Their AKC marketplace ad contains the words "Beautiful, smart family pets, champion show dogs, puppies have been trained as therapy dogs." And yet, I cannot find evidence that any of their dogs have been shown. You can use the AKC link below and search for their kennel name to check. So, I don't know what they mean by that. Possibly CKC shown. But I see no mention anywhere and you can't look up CKC stuff. They do not mention it anywhere, but it would be something I'd inquire about if there weren't more serious issues outlined above.

 

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Discussion Starter #6
I would suggest waiting as well. I visited their website, and I am not impressed with the grooming of their pups (pups without shaved faces) and also some of their adult dogs. Additionally, I find it odd that they show a picture of their females, but not the "stud"- which they refer to as "chocolate"- not a poodle color. I would want to visit, meet the parents, and see the environment they were raised in. Also, differing price based on personality doesn't sit well with me. Just my thoughts.

Have you thought about getting on a waitlist for Farleys, NOLA, or Arreau? This health crisis has to end at some point.

I wish you luck with your puppy search and good health to you and your family.
Thank you. This is fortifying. I thought there were some flags, but without a lot of experience decoding and reading the signs is hard to catch.

Yes, seems like those you mention are the rockstars! NOLA is very far, but I will contact Farleys, Arreau was my dream.
I hope this health crisis ends soon, for everyone. best wishes for good health.
 

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I'm with Skylar. It will be very difficult to socialize a puppy for the next couple months. Additionally, there are some things about this breeder that wouldn't meet my desires in a poodle breeder. Some minor, but a few are major. I will provide details in the hopes that it may aid your search.

-No OFA orthopedic health testing (I say this based on lack of info on her site, all marketplace postings, and searches on OFA using both their kennel name and the stud's kennel name (and stud's actual name). For standard poodles hip dysplasia is a big enough concern that it is a good idea to have fully tested parents.

-Require spay/neuter by 6 months in the puppy contract. For me this is actually the #1 issue. All current studies on standard poodles recommend waiting until maturity to sterilize. The very earliest that growth may be sufficient is generally considered to be 12 months, though 18-24 months is considered preferable for full growth completion.

-Another puppy contract issue... I'll put a direct quote.

"The Buyer has 72 hours in which he/she is encouraged to have the puppy examined by a certified Veterinarian. If the veterinarian finds anything seriously wrong (related to bloodlines only) with the puppy, it will be exchanged for a similar pup from stock on hand, or from expected litters as soon as possible. The Buyer must return the puppy and all the paperwork to the Seller with a signed letter from the Veterinarian with the name, address, phone number, and the defect detected, before any replacement will be made. The Seller reserves the right for a second opinion from another Veterinarian if within 72 hours from the purchase date the puppy dies. An autopsy must be obtained (at the Buyer’s expense) to determine the cause of death. A replacement puppy will be given ONLY if death is caused by a hereditary factor."

To me, this is worrisome because... say you get the puppy and then within hours it's clear it has come down with parvo. You take it to the vet, they verify it has parvo, and are unable to treat it successfully. Puppy passes... and breeder won't do anything. Because it wasn't a hereditary issue. And that is ALL there is in terms of health guarantees. This is not typical for contracts. Usually from what I've seen, there's a 72 hour window to have the pup seen by a veterinarian and if the pup is found to be ill, it can be returned for a refund or replacement. And then there's often an additional guarantee against congenital defects that's typically 6 months to 2 years. But Red Door's contract is only for congenital defects and only for 72 hours. This is a bit frightening.

Aside from these things, the more minor things I don't like. First, I also will join the crowd that ungroomed pups aren't ideal. Also, this breeder advertises on NextDayPets and PuppyFind. I don't know about NextDayPets but I know PuppyFind has a poor reputation because they remove all negative reviews. I was able to find that it seems some (could be all) of their poodles are AKC registered. I don't see any titles on any of them. Their AKC marketplace ad contains the words "Beautiful, smart family pets, champion show dogs, puppies have been trained as therapy dogs." And yet, I cannot find evidence that any of their dogs have been shown. You can use the AKC link below and search for their kennel name to check. So, I don't know what they mean by that. Possibly CKC shown. But I see no mention anywhere and you can't look up CKC stuff. They do not mention it anywhere, but it would be something I'd inquire about if there weren't more serious issues outlined above.

Thanks Raindrops! You have outlined, more than i was paying attention to. I was worried about the inactivity of her dogs, and the health testing murkiness. And I misread the 6 months to spay/neuter part. I'm feeling a bit dopey for not checking to see where else the breeder had listed. NextDayPets! ugh. ok, my fever is much cooled. thank you again. Hope all is well for your family now.
 

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I wouldn't purchase a poodle puppy without meeting the parents, unless it was from an extremely reputable breeder. Same goes for seeing where they're being raised. In our digital world, it's easy to use lots of "feel-good" adjectives on a website. Same goes for cute staged photos. It creates a nice picture in our mind that doesn't always match reality.

That said - I understand the excitement, especially when combined with the strangeness of our current circumstances. But I'd use this time to do your research and get on the wait list of your dreams.

If you really need to scratch the dog itch NOW (something I've experienced myself), how about reaching out to local shelters or rescue groups about fostering? I think many are in need at the moment.
 

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P.S. Looks like you've already got lots of good advice from other members. :) Isn't this place great? I can't wait to hear about the puppy you eventually end up with. He or she will be well worth the wait. I'm already excited for you!
 

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Thanks Raindrops! You have outlined, more than i was paying attention to. I was worried about the inactivity of her dogs, and the health testing murkiness. And I misread the 6 months to spay/neuter part. I'm feeling a bit dopey for not checking to see where else the breeder had listed. NextDayPets! ugh. ok, my fever is much cooled. thank you again. Hope all is well for your family now.
I assure you that you're way ahead of the curve compared to most puppy buyers I meet. I know how hard it is with puppy fever. It can be maddening. And it takes a lot of experience to investigate breeders. I have only managed to learn from listening to others here. I certainly also know more now than I did when I got my pup. I found the whole process quite dizzying back then. Thank you for the well wishes!
 

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I agree that to wait would be best. You mentioned the inactivity of her puppies. When I got Zeke, he was unusually "calm", as the "breeder" put it. Turned out he was a really sick little pup that cost several hundred dollars to treat. I was told the breeder would refund half the money I spent on vet bills, but of course I never heard from/reach her again. I don't regret that I got him, but if his illness had been even more serious, I could have lost him before I ever got to know him as a "normal" puppy.

There are so many red flags with this breeder. She is charging more for the darker red. The clause in the contract that was posted here< well, I've seen that clause verbatim in other sketchy breeders' contracts. Not one single word different. And if the puppy Is ill, pretty much most vets are making you turn your dog over to a tech in the parking lot, and have to wait for him/her to be brought back out. It's just not the right time to get a puppy that could need extended medical care.

I know it is so hard waiting, but I realize now it is well worth it to do so. I wish you the best in finding your perfect new family member. It will be well worth the wait.
 

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I'm still working on this as a guide for folks starting a search but I'll drop it in here, hoping it'll be useful as it is

Who would I want to buy my poodle from?

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 of 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, and for health and genetic diversity,
and will prove their dogs meet these standards by showing or competing
or by breeding from titled parents or recent generations. It's not the title, but what it shows
! focus is on quality, never quantity

Breeding Parents
! registry information available
! not too old or young for breeding
! not overbred
! genetic health testing done appropriate to breed and variety
! other health testing such as eyes, hips
! results of testing on own website, OFA site or testing lab
see Health Related Publications - Versatility In Poodles, Inc.

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

Puppies
! routine and urgent vet care, immunizations, dewormings
! socialization
! first groomings
! registry papers
! they will not require spay/neuter before physical maturity for breed and variety
! 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

Advertising
! 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.
 

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If you really need to scratch the dog itch NOW (something I've experienced myself), how about reaching out to local shelters or rescue groups about fostering? I think many are in need at the moment.
This also is a really great idea. I know in my state, some of the shelters are now closed to visitors, but rescues are reminding people it's puppy season and they are looking for foster homes. In the Chicago area, there might even be a poodle to foster. :)
 

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You are so lucky to be getting expert puppy advice before you made the purchase! Too many people just jump in and buy that cute adorable puppy, and then find all of this out later, much to their dismay.
 

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I don't know of this breeder nor have I even gone to the site but due to circumstances right now I would probably hold off on getting a puppy. You will need food, vet visits, grooming, socialization visits, training classes.. All of that can be a bit over whelming to begin with and more so with the state we are in at the moment.
 

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There may even be more puppies available once we pass the peak of infection. It’s sad to say, but some people who are on lists may no longer be able to purchase a puppy.

The right pup will be available when it’s the best time for you to bring a new dog into your family.

From downstate Illinois, hang in there!
 

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Poodle puppies are such a lot of work that I agree with you that now is the perfect time because you won't be overwhelmed.
I do not know if he ships, but he is a dream breeder, (meets all the excellent advice you have been given here,) and his dogs are stunning in the UKC ring.
His silver tux litter is a bit older (Dec), calm, and well socialized.
If I had the energy, I'd be getting his last boy. I have been watching him since birth but just can't face puppydom now that Noodle is perfect.
Best of luck!

parents:
mom.jpg
 

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P.S. Looks like you've already got lots of good advice from other members. :) Isn't this place great? I can't wait to hear about the puppy you eventually end up with. He or she will be well worth the wait. I'm already excited for you!
Thank you PeggyThe Parti, I do love this forum. Reading the threads is really interesting and the community is so generous. I look forward to posting a picture of my pup once i get one!
 

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This also is a really great idea. I know in my state, some of the shelters are now closed to visitors, but rescues are reminding people it's puppy season and they are looking for foster homes. In the Chicago area, there might even be a poodle to foster. :)
Funny, I just heard on the news that for the first time ever, one of the Chicago shelters ran out of dogs! I sent an email to a local shelter, hopefully I can help.
 
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