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We lost our 4 year old apricot standard to an illness (not genetic) 2 months ago. I am ready to start looking for another dog. In getting our prior dog we did everything right. I contacted many show breeders even though I wanted a pet. I asked the various breeders about the breeder I ended up using and all had good things to say. Our breeder health tested and both parents had Chic numbers (I do not blame the breeder in any way). To be honest I do not really want a puppy, they are a lot of work and I feel like I did that work last time and only got part of the benefit as she was taken in her prime. While I know I could hold out for a retired breeder, I really want a dog younger than 5. Plus our neighbor has a retired breeder and I am not that impressed with their dog although I am sure she is nice.

While I would certainly consider a puppy, it is not my first choice. I have started to look into rescues because honestly I had a health tested dog and she died from cancer. So I realize while it can prevent hip displaysia, it does not prevent everything.

There is a rescue available at a shelter about 3 hours away. I have spoken to the shelter personnel who seem amazing over the phone. She was taken from a home due to neglect. If she were closer I would already have been to see her. She is 2 years old. She has been there a week but is very shut down. A couple went to see her yesterday and it took a long time to get her out of her cage but she did allow both the man and woman to pet her so no fear of men, just of everyone!

I have no experience with dogs that have been neglected although I have plenty of experience with well treated dogs.

In the alternative, there is a standard male available (I would prefer a female and with a puppy would only consider a female but I am more flexible on an older dog) whose family is moving away (to a country that has very strict rules on importing dogs, I checked) and cannot afford to take the dog. He is 1.5 and is also a drive away (5 hours). He has been raised with children and according to the owner is very gentle and fun. I asked about any quirks and the ones she mentioned I can live with. The dog is originally from a local breeder. to this family. When I looked her up I did not see health testing on her web site. I do have the names on the pedigree and will run the names through OFA but I doubt they will be there. Plus she breeds a few breeds

In the alternative I could of course get a puppy from a breeder recommended on this site but not sure I want to go that way except as a last resort. When I got my dog 5 years ago I had tried to get a rescue but most wanted no children under 12 and mine were younger. Now everyone is 13 and over so that is not a problem. H would like to pass on both dogs and get a puppy but he is not the one who will have to sleep next to the puppy's crate the first week or housebreak her

Thoughts on rescues, especially really shy dogs? Or taking an older dog when you know the breeder that he was originally purchased from did not do health testing but the dog seems really nice?
 

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With adult dogs, I think the first priority is personality/temperament fit. You can worry about the rest of it after you've got that matched. That's the advantage of adopting adult dogs -- their personalities are set, so you know what kind of dog you're getting.

I have a fearful/undersocialized rescue dog and I *love* her, but she's a lot of work. Unless you have a very low-key lifestyle, I wouldn't take on a fearful dog from a neglect background unprepared. A good book that might help you understand what you'd be in for is "The Cautious Canine," by Patricia McConnell. You should also plan to find a good trainer with experience with dogs like this who can help you. If she's coming from neglect, she probably doesn't have any training, including potty training. You're starting from scratch. Working with dogs like that can be incredibly rewarding (I actually love it, though I can definitely only handle one at a time), but you need to be prepared for the possibility that your dog's always going to be a little screwy.

Now, if you have a quiet home, set routines, and you don't really go out much, then a fearful dog can be just fine -- there'll be an adjustment period where she gets used to you and your home, but then she'll probably be happy to just keep that as her entire world. If you frequently have guests or like to travel or your kids like to run around and play, though, you might have a harder time.

It sounds like the other dog is a better fit for your actual family, so I wouldn't let health concerns get in the way. If you're open to shelter/rescue dogs, then you're prepared for them not to be health-tested anyway. Are you actually OK with a male dog or do you just feel like you shouldn't be too picky? Because if you can handle a boy dog, then he sounds like a great match.

Are there any Poodle-specific rescues in your area? It could be worth reaching out to them if you haven't already. Last time I was looking, the Poodle rescues in my area were only adopting Standards to pre-approved homes -- they were so in demand they didn't even list them on their website or anything. So if they have a preapproval process where you can submit an application ahead of time, that could be a good idea too.
 

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I agree with lisasgirl and think the male sounds like a better fit for your family even though he is further away. A dog that has been neglected is likely to have a lot of baggage and may not be a good fit for any but the most quiet home.
 
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I have had puppies and agree I do not want to go through the puppy stages. I have gotten mine from breeders and some were awful people, the dogs were 15 month old, and have turned out lovely. I got a 5 year old that was skittish and did not like men, it took a year to get her straightend out and she is also wonderful, except is afraid of thunder 9 I put her in her crate with a blanket covering it and she is fine, otherwise they all 3 sleep with me. Out of 8 poodles from pups to 5 years, with in 1 to 2 years they all have the same personality, and are wonderful dogs who are obedient and a real pleasure to have, so I think it depends on the time and effort put into them. However, I had one male all the rest were females, I never had a problem, but my friends male peed on his front legs. Figured I was lucky the first time and did not want to take a chance. Mine are toys, had one left 1 year later got a 2nd, and 1.5 years later got a 3 all from different places. Only one of the 8 has a health problem and it is an eye disease that I have been treating for 10 years, she is 14 now
 

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First of all, I am so sorry for your loss. Losing a dog at 4 years old had to have been very difficult.

I am not sure what your home life is like. Even if your heart is calling out to the rescue dog, a shy and withdrawn dog should not go to a home that usually has a lot of excitement and activity. If a shelter/rescue is a good rescue, they will match the right dog with the right type of living situation. You also might know more of where you stand after meeting the dogs as well. Good luck!
 

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Thank you for your well thought out reply. Interestingly, although we are a large family we are a bunch of couch potatoes who seldom entertain. Even my kids usually go to their friends houses rather than the other way around. I am not a great cook so when we want to treat our friends we go out. While we take one or more trips a year, we never travel with our dogs. We have a friend that is committed to taking them. Her house is pretty quiet too. Having said all that the shelter female is no longer on their web site so I think she found a home which I am happy about. So that leaves the male standard.

To answer about why a female, I have known 6 dogs in my life well. A german shepherd when I was very young who was fabulous and a female owned by a neighbor and mostly based on family legend, a mixed breed Heinz type who my friend got from a shelter as a puppy that I trained who was an excellent dog and female, a male Samoyed that was an impulse purchase by my family when I was a teenager, he was nice but was very independent and ok but not an amazing dog if I could do it over I would not choose him, my friend's male mini poo who is probably the greatest dog I have ever known but he was also being raised by a graduate student who had plenty of time on his hands, our male foster dog who is a nice dog but not one I would have gotten given the choice (he belongs to a friend who became allergic but lives with us, it works out and I would not give him away except back to his family) and my female standard who was a really good dog and even with losing her so young I would not have chosen another puppy instead. Maybe it is hype but I feel like female dogs are easier to train, more bonded to the family and less likely to wander. The last 2 were definitely true of my female standard. I am starting to think I really want a female and may be willing to get a puppy or waiting a little while until the perfect rehome becomes available

In my area standards have people lining up, especially healthy young dogs
 

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Maybe it is hype but I feel like female dogs are easier to train, more bonded to the family and less likely to wander. The last 2 were definitely true of my female standard. I am starting to think I really want a female and may be willing to get a puppy or waiting a little while until the perfect rehome becomes available
I used to have a strong preference for female dogs, but I had a few amazing male foster dogs, and I took a leap of faith in choosing a male for my second spoo. I was actually open to either sex, but I got matched with Frosty and he's just awesome. He has been the easier to train, more loyal to me, and less likely to wander out of my two spoos. He has been trustworthy off-leash since day 1. I love both dogs equally, of course, but he is easy and loves to please.
 

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I can’t compare the genders for poodles, only relate my experience with a male spoo. I specified a male to the breeder because of my then 7 yo female terrier-mix. There has been competition in the house previously when I’ve boarded other females. My boy is now 2.5 years old and is very bonded to me, just a big lap puppy. He’s sweet yet full of drive for the dog sports that we enjoy. One of my training friends has flat coated retrievers and swears by males as the more affectionate.

Here is Susan Garrett’s take on the question of boy versus girl.

https://susangarrettdogagility.com/tag/puppy-selection/
 

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I think you should get one you want and not settle for whatever happens to be available right now. I have a mlle, he is 9 months next week. I think he is wonderful. If you truly want a female then you should wait until you find one available. Our local rescue seems to get many a poodle come in, several young standards. Either owner surrender because they can't handle the dog or its too much work. They have very good foster homes and really spend a lot of time matching the dog to its new owner. My neighbor is getting a white standard this week, he is calm and obedience trained and only 2 years old but his elderly owner is ill and cannot take care of him. Since I have gotten my dog for some uncanny reason I follow their rescue and I've seen many many. I would contact your local poodle club and have them put you in touch with a few rescues and let them know what you are looking for. I bet one will show up.
 
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