One of the more distinguished medium to large breeds, recognizable by their high set tail, large oval shaped feet and curly or corded coat. The Poodle’s graceful and elegant gait make them very pleasing on the eye. They are very much a house dog and are not suitable for outdoor housing, but what reason would you have to keep them outside anyway? Highly intelligent, family friendly, easily trained and very well behaved; the Poodle is a great all-rounder.
|Good With Other Dogs|
Stories From Real Life Poodle Owners
My Poodle Grace
I am currently the owner of a purebred female Standard Poodle with a beautiful black coat. She is four years old right now and her name is Grace. As is true with any type of dog, owning a poodle isn't without it's challenges. However, I love her more than anything, and she has brought great joy, fun, and companionship into my life.
Temperament of a Poodle
Poodles are known for being an intelligent and social dog breed, and this definitely holds true with Grace. She tends to be a little nervous when meeting new people, but this is a fairly normal reaction for many types of dogs. However, she has never shown any type of animosity towards strangers, and after a few times meeting someone new she she starts to take to them and gets excited when she sees them.
I have two kids at home, one who is three years old and one who is 10 months old, and we have never had issues between them and Grace. I think poodles are a great family dog. Grace always wants to be involved in everything we are doing and likes to be as close as possible. Every once in awhile she gets a little too excited, but she is generally incredibly gentle with the kids. They love having her around, and she tolerates my four-year-old always wanting to cuddle with her and lay on top of her.
My poodle is generally a very quiet dog. She doesn't bark much, even when someone knocks at the door. I would say she is even a bit skittish about loud noises or sudden movements, so she's certainly not the type to be very loud and defensive. She is very loyal though, and does seem like she has some protective instincts.
Potty Training a Poodle
I started potty training Grace almost immediately after I got her, because this is what the vet recommended. I figured the longer I put it off, the less likely she'll want to change her patterns and get used to something new. What we did was block off certain areas of the house that we would absolute not want an accident to take place in. I knew there would inevitably be some accidents in the house before Grace got the hang of things, so when she was roaming freely we kept it contained to areas with tile. This made it easily cleanable.
It do not think it took us more than a few weeks to get Grace into the habit of knocking on the back door when she wanted to go out to the bathroom. Essentially all we did was keep on eye on her if it looked like she was looking for a place to go to the bathroom. At that point, one of us would run over to pick her up and quickly whisk her outside. She started to get the message pretty quickly, after maybe a couple of weeks. Of course there were accidents here or there for the first couple of months, but I remember not being concerned about it happening regularly after about a month. Poodles are known for being intelligent dogs, so I'm pretty sure Grace took to her potty training faster than a lot of breeds would!
Obedience Training a Poodle
I was one of those people who was a bit lazy about training their dog. I took her to a training class that was a few weeks long when she was about a year old. I wondered if I should have someone train her privately, but I had always heard that poodles are highly trainable because they are great at being obedient and they are such an intelligent breed, so I wasn't very worried about her doing well.
During her class they taught the basics, like sitting, shaking, heeling, laying, and coming. I believe the course we used was six weeks long and Grace mastered everything they taught pretty easily. She passed her final test and "graduated" doggy obedience school. In the last few years since we have done the formal obedience training we have also taught her various tricks of our own. She knows how to roll over now. Additionally, when someone knocks at the front door we have taught her to respond to us saying "place" and pointing to a specific place in the room for her to go to and stay in until we release her. This was the hardest trick for Grace to learn, but she still did it pretty easily.
A couple people I know who are poodle owners have gotten their dogs into dog agility training because of how intelligent and trainable they are. I have heard that poodles are one of the best breeds for this type of training or for a bunch of other types of dog sports. I personally haven't had an interest in doing this with my poodle, but apparently they are very successful in these types of things.
Poodle Health Issues
Grace hasn't had any type of health problems yet, but of course she is only four years old. Purebred dogs are more prone to disease and other health problems than mixed breed dogs, and I think poodles are no exception to this. I have read that some of the most common health problems for purebred poodles are gastric issues and Addison's Disease. Addison's Disease can cause tiredness, vomiting and some other issues, but it can be fixed if it's properly diagnosed by a vet.
In general, my dog is very healthy and hasn't cause me any problems. I have read that we can expect our poodle to live to be about 11 or 12 years old, which really isn't too bad for a dog like her, who is pretty big. Last time we weighed her shew as about 55 pounds, which I think is fairly standard for adult female poodles. We give her lots of exercise and she is regularly active, so I hope this means she will live a long and healthy life.
Why I Love My Dog
I have been a dog lover my entire life and I have had many types of dogs. I have loved each one and connected with them in different ways. I think poodles are special in unique ways, just as any dog would be. I would say that poodles are no more difficult than any other type of dog I've had.
Something potential owners should consider is that their grooming takes more work than it does for most other types of dogs. I have to take Grace in every month for grooming. She gets cleaned and gets her hair cut. If you are looking for a dog whose hair you won't have to work to maintain, a poodle will not be the right choice. However, after getting into the routine of taking her to get groomed, I don't find it to be a big inconvenience. What I love is that even though I have to spend a little extra time and money grooming Grace, she doesn't seem to shed much at all. I have had Labradors in the past, and they shed all over the house. Poodles don't seem to do that.
As I discussed above, I love how easily poodles fit in with families and children. When we got her our four-year-old was just a baby, and we never really had to worry about her being aggressive or hurting the baby. Now that our oldest is four and we have another baby in the house, she is adjusting very well again. She also has a constant playmate, which everyone loves.
In general, I would highly recommend poodles to almost any person looking to get a dog. They are high-energy, but not so much that they bother you or demand attention all the time. They will keep you active but not be a nuisance. Grace is loving and sweet but not overbearing. She likes to be around and involved in all the activity, but she doesn't insist on following me around the house or getting into whatever I'm doing. It doesn't require a lot of patience to be a poodle owner because, at least in my experience, they are easy to train and aim to please.
In my opinion, poodles are some of the cutest dogs out there! You can change their look a bit by how you choose to groom them, but they always look adorable and elegant. I have loved having Grace in my life and I wouldn't trade her for any other dog.