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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
I have adopted my first poodle. Rupert is 3 years old and has lived with my elderly parents since he was 8 weeks old. Pretty quickly after getting Rupert my mum was diagnosed with dementia and has gone downhill quickly. Needless to say Rupert hasn’t had the time and attention he needs and has little manners.
He has bonded really quickly to me and follows me around everywhere. This is easing off a little as he is getting more settled in our house.
The main issue we have is that he whines whenever I’m not near him. If I leave the house and he stays with my husband he whines, if I’m upstairs and he is downstairs (again with my husband) he whines.
If I’m downstairs and go upstairs when it’s just us in the house he is fine.
I’m at a loss of what to do to stop him. Please help!
He is crate trained and doesn’t whine in there.
 

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I am so glad you took in your moms boy. He probably has a bit of separation anxiety and being in new environment makes it a bit scary for him. I would not make a big deal when he whines or when I come & go. Eventually he will see that you come & go and he doesn't nd that he isn't going anywhere. My neighbor adopted an almost 2 year old standard about 1 year ago. I pet sit for her. The first 6 months he was very nervous. Left his puppyhood home and went into foster then to his forever home. He would whine and cry and go looking for his new mom. When I sat for him he kept looking for his new mom and when we went outside he would take are of business then run to the gate and cry. This all stopped maybe 4 months ago. He now understands he is not going anywhere and that his new family comes in and out. When I sit now he no longer pants or whines looking around.
 

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I agree with Mufar that your 3 year old pup just needs to settle in and realize that you will always come back! But if you really need tips to train that behavior to stop, have your husband use treats since he hears the whining while you're gone.
When Rupert is crying for you, have your husband try to talk to Rupert and calm him. When Rupert stops whining, TREAT!! This may take some time to get his attention away from searching for you... if this is the case then have him distract with fun toys and games! "Look Rupert, I have a cool toy wow this is so fun wow!!" just make your husband too cool and too fun he has to join in! Rupert will learn that he can focus on something else to keep his mind off of you upstairs and out of sight. You leaving = fun with dad!

But, I do think this will fade once he is comfortable in the house :) But praising calm behavior is always a good start! My family tries to do this for my SPoo but hes so large he just busts through the doors to get to me LOL!

Good luck to you and Rupert :)
 

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What a wonderful thing you've done, bringing Rupert into your home.

How long have you had him? Might be worth a look at the "3-3-3 Rule" of dog adoption, which outlines what to expect at 3 days, 3 weeks, and 3 months.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks everyone.
We have only had him for 3 weeks so I know it’s early days but I was getting a bit nervous as I know they get very attached to ‘their’ person! To be truthful my husband doesn’t want a dog and he certainly doesn’t want a poodle so I was hoping to convince him how good Rupert was and he would fall in love ? Rupert is obviously not down with this plan as he keeps getting himself into trouble!
 

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You did a wonderful thing taking your mother's poodle. Between this and your mother's dementia and probably other health issues, you're under a lot of stress.

I brought my minipoo home when she was almost a year old - and I definitely saw changes in her behavior over the first three months till she completely settled into the routine of our household. Three weeks is still early for him to adapt. I also had a whining problem. I had to train her not to whine in order to pass the AKC Canine Good Citizen and the Therapy Dog International testing.

It would be very helpful if you husband would treat your dog when he wasn't whining but if he's not a willing partner in training it's best not to ask him to do anything because he may end up just rewarding the whining instead.

I used to go to the bathroom and shut the door between us, when she stopped whining, I would open the door and treat. I was able to shorten the whining and eventually she learned to stop whining because the door would open more quickly and I would give her a treat. I think an even better method for training this would require an expensive electronic devise which you can push a remote control to have the machine dispense a treat there by taking you out of the equation while the no whining is rewarded.
 
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To be truthful my husband doesn’t want a dog and he certainly doesn’t want a poodle so I was hoping to convince him how good Rupert was and he would fall in love ? Rupert is obviously not down with this plan as he keeps getting himself into trouble!
This sounds so much like me while we were fostering a young GSD! I was willing her to go easy on my husband, to help win him over, but I guess she wasn't picking up on my signals?

Actually, more likely she WAS picking up on the weird dynamic and behaving accordingly. Every time my husband would emerge from his home office, she'd launch herself at him. This, however, did NOT win his affections and so she became *increasingly* boisterous in his presence.

Which made him enjoy her less.

And on it went.

Is there any aspect of Rupert's care that your husband might enjoy participating in? Poodles are so very sensitive and will absolutely sense not only his discomfort, but also yours as you attempt to keep the peace.
 

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I think PTP is on to something. Poodles are sensitive to human emotions and reactions.

Your husband is who he is, not faulting him in any way, but possibly Rupert feels your husbands non-acceptance and reacts to being left with him, unwanted, by whining for his safe person now, who is you. Non-accepters have become converts, but something has to create an opening for acceptance.

Has your husband ever had a dog or is Rupert the first? What is his strongest objection? Is it timing in general, the necessity of Rupert's moving in with you, or Rupert the Poodle himself? You don't need to answer that publicly, just to consider where to look for that opening.

When my husband and I got married, he was not a dog fan but inherited my mini poodle, Sass. It wasn't active dislike, just not interested. Somehow, my husband ended up being the giver of the food, the thrower of the ball, and the director of walks. They eventually (not so very long, really) bonded to become pals.

Your husband doesn't have to participate in training, but if Rupert can start seeing him as a giver of good things, that might create the opening for an improved relationship.

I'm not the only one here with a convert story. Maybe some of the others will tell theirs.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
Rupert seems completely oblivious to my husband! He occasionally goes and leaps on him and loves him and my husband does stroke him and talk to him.
We have always had dogs (2 greyhounds aka the rugs of the dog world and a British bulldog) but we have recently moved from NZ back to the UK and my husband was enjoying the time without a dog.
I think it’s just a bit of an odd time in our lives, new job for him, school for our daughter, living in rental accommodation and dealing with mums illness has just made us all a bit stressed). He wanted a big dog when the time came, which Rupert is obviously not!
I can see the leaps and bounds Rupert is making and I keep pointing them out. My husband is agreeing with me about how trainable he is. This morning he even said he was clever!
In 3 weeks he has learnt sit, he is good at ‘itsyerchoice’ started down and touch this morning. He is a fetch expert and has learnt leave. He has almost stopped jumping up at people too! He’s got really good at going in the car and is amazing with our 4 year old ( they are currently playing tug at my feet).

I think I’m quite in love I just have to give it time.
 

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He also had a great time watching a local dog training group while I was chatting to a trainer about him and signing up. Then we gave out sweets at Halloween and he was happy to be dressed up and meet some of the children. He is getting very brave! Funnily enough 3 people thought he was a puppy getting socialised, they didn’t believe he was 3!

The photos are before and after his severe haircut, his Halloween costume and him sitting on the step waiting for me!
 

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