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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We’re thinking about adding a second Poodle to our family sometime in the future – SPOO or MPOO. My wife prefers a female as she believed a male dog will “mark” in the house. I say, once house trained, marking should not be an issue. I also think a male might bond better with my wife. The dog’s sex really doesn’t matter to me. I was looking for a female when I found Happy because I had recently lost my longtime female JRT companion, but don’t I think we should limit our search based on sex. I think Happy will be fine with either way. What say all of you?
 

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Marking inside is a training issue. While it's not really related to housetraining, you treat it pretty much the same.
 
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I chose a male because I have a female terrier mix, and she thinks she's the boss. My male has never marked in the house, and was intact for 4 years. He's a real "momma's boy" who loves to snuggle inside.
 

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I think you are right to keep your options open. In general females pair best with males, though in poodles it's not generally an issue to have dogs of the same sex. Marking occurs in either sex and really is just a training issue. I found it very easy to teach Misha not to mark in our house... he only tried twice before he learned it was off limits. But learning not to mark in other buildings was more difficult to teach. Lately he has become sooo much more reliable but it took a lot of vigilance for a while. It's tricky when other dogs have marked and you are trying to tell them that it's still not ok. I don't think that's particular to males though. I think people just don't consider it marking when females do it because of bias. With males you may deal with adolescent humping shenanigans, and with females you're dealing with heats and hormones. Both annoying in their own way. Really I would say it's just down to dogs being individuals. There's a stereotype that males prefer to bond with women and females prefer to bond with men. But whether there's real truth in that is hard to say. Clearly dogs can go either way. But if you're really wanting the new pup to prefer her over you, I guess it wouldn't hurt to go with a male in case it helps the case. But it's also totally ok to have a human preference for no good reason if your wife really feels strongly.
 

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I’m on your wife’s side. I only want girls from now on. Sure, my jrt marked, but it was something I could (mostly) train her not to do and if she did mark inside it was an easy cleanup, floor only. My Diego, my heart, on the other hand... he marked the twins mamaroos when they came home. He for the longest was a sneaky pee-er on the corner of beds. I love him so much but it’s been enough to turn me off of males, at least while they have kids to be jealous of living in my house. My Jack (bull terrier) never marked anything in his 10 years, so I know it’s not a thing for all males but it’s not a chance I want to take right now.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think you are right to keep your options open. In general females pair best with males, though in poodles it's not generally an issue to have dogs of the same sex. Marking occurs in either sex and really is just a training issue. I found it very easy to teach Misha not to mark in our house... he only tried twice before he learned it was off limits. But learning not to mark in other buildings was more difficult to teach. Lately he has become sooo much more reliable but it took a lot of vigilance for a while. I don't think that's particular to males though. I think people just don't consider it marking when females do it because of bias. With males you may deal with adolescent humping shenanigans, and with females you're dealing with heats and hormones. Both annoying in their own way. Really I would say it's just down to dogs being individuals. There's a stereotype that males prefer to bond with women and females prefer to bond with men. But whether there's real truth in that is hard to say. Clearly dogs can go either way. But if you're really wanting the new pup to prefer her over you, I guess it wouldn't hurt to go with a male in case it helps the case. But it's also totally ok to have a human preference for no good reason if your wife really feels strongly.
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My female JRT was an alpha and marked like crazy outside the house. I do want our next pup to prefer my wife. While Happy love everyone, she is definitely attached to me in a special kind of way. My remaining (male) JRT is a lover, but has always gravitated towards women. I guess I can tell my wife I was right and she was wrong - well maybe not...
 

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Does your wife train Happy? Peggy bonded tight to my husband at first, but once Peggy and I found our “thing” together, we bonded tightly, too. It’s great if that thing is (fun) training, but even something as simple as naps together, or a daily walking routine, can really build up that attachment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Does your wife train Happy? Peggy bonded tight to my husband at first, but once Peggy and I found our “thing” together, we bonded tightly, too. It’s great if that thing is (fun) training, but even something as simple as naps together, or a daily walking routine, can really build up that attachment.
She does some training and is the treat giver, but I'm the walk and play guy which seems to be Happy's love language. Don't get me wrong, Happy loves my wife and is bonded, she's just really attached to me.
 

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I remember someone saying that a female will love you, and a male will be in love with you. I'm sure that is not totally reliable, but it has been true in my house. It's kinda ridiculous how much Raffi is obsessed with me, and to a slightly lesser degree our daughter. Our female dog OTOH (not a poodle) loves us all.
Also- my dogs are both intact, and there is no marking ever. Raffi has never marked indoors in other places either.
I say don't limit yourself, assess any potential new dog with an open mind!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thank you everybody for your wise words. We're months away from earnestly looking for a pup - although the topic comes up frequently. Again, thanks.
 

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I don't find the sex of the dog has anything to do with bonding with a male or female human. As a general rule I select & handle females. You can't put a thread between my Giant Schnauzer, Collie & I. They're both females. I train dogs for a lot of different things & my personal dogs are always female with a couple of rare exceptions. My current Standard Poodle is one of those rare exceptions & I still wish he'd been a girl. I will always prefer handling & living with females. I love my boy, don't get me wrong but the females are more focused & far harder to distract. My boy is currently goofier than a clown show because he smells a lady in season. I've never had trouble with a male marking in the house or other naughty male behavior & that's mostly because they're raised & trained & know it just won't do. Of course, Mr. Layne, went to mark the other day & didn't see Tinerkbell, our tiny long coated Chihuahua. She bit him on the offending appendage & for a couple of days he was very careful where he peed & now circles everything before he pees on it. So my ladies can be helpful in breaking up bad behavior.

Either way, if Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy. My tip would be that if you want her to bond with the dog, then put her as the primary of picking the pup most drawn to her & her being the primary caregiver to the puppy & it won't be long until they're inseparable male or female.
 

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I agree with what someone had said earlier on in the thread that you have to find something to bond over and I think it would be mostly on what your wife would want to do with the dog. However, no matter what even as a puppy the only male dog in my house is the one that creates the strongest bonds with people rather than the females in my house. I've seen this in a lot of animals where males tend to bond more closely with people, but every dog and animal is different and there's no guarantee that you won't get the exception of that generalization.
 

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I have a male Spoo who I trained gently and well as a puppy. He is now 12 and has never marked in the house. He is a total lover. If I get another dog while he is still alive, he will get to have the final say on what dog we get! I never want to be in a household again where the pets don't like each other :)
 

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My current guy has impeccable house manners even though he's still not neutered. He's very cuddly and affectionate. My last male would pee on the bathroom wall if he was left indoors without backyard access for more than a few hours, but I once had a female with the same issue. The advantage of the male was that we could put a belly band on him and prevent peeing on the rare occasions when he couldn't access the backyard.

The male dogs that I've known have all been extremely affectionate. My mother was reluctant to get her first male dog since she had always had females, but she converted over to all-boys and never looked back. She might even consider trading in my sister and me.
 
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