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Tidbits: Why Poodles?

I’ve been asked this question a lot… Why Poodles? or Why a Standard Poodle?

I grew up around all kinds of dogs and actually loved Dobermans. My first dog was a Doberman/Husky mix that we’d adopted. I thought for sure that when I was ‘grown up’ I’d get a Doberman.

However, Ray and Dave have allergies to pets. So to get a dog, I had to concede that we’d get a hypo-allergenic dog (and no, Max is not hypoallergenic, but that’s another story) and we started researching the hypo-allergenic dog breeds. I also thought about what traits I wanted in a dog. After comparing our list of wants vs. possible breeds, we decided on the Standard Poodle.

Standard Poodles are highly intelligent, very people-oriented, and easy to train. They really don’t shed (very very minimally) because they have hair instead of fur. They’re great watch dogs but not overly aggressive. They’re good with other animals and excellent with children. Because of their intelligence, they need stimulation through a walk or play daily.

Having Phaedra has motivated me to be more active as I take walks with her or I play with her. I also spend a lot of time cuddled up with her. Anything I want to do, she wants to do, with the exception of swimming. She hates the pool. She loves to lay in my lap and I absolutely adore having a 47 lb lap dog.

One of the things to be aware of with Standard Poodles is that they have a chance to have Addison’s Disease. Even though we researched the breeder and her dogs and there was no history of Addison’s Disease in her line, Phaedra ended up with Addison’s. I was really devastated by it initially. She almost died several times until the vet realized that’s what was going on.

We’ve had it under control for quite a while now, but it’s still scary. She has to have a $150 DOCP every six weeks to remain healthy. She also takes a very low dose of prednisone (a steroid) every other day.

While I knew this was a VERY remote possibility if we got a poodle, I naively assumed that it wouldn’t happen to us. Phaedra didn’t get sick until she was 2.5 years old.

Arg, I’ve rambled. So be it.

In short, why a Standard Poodle? I wanted a smart, large, easy to train, hypoallergenic dog that would love me and be there for me. That’s what I’ve got.

Are standard poodles for everyone? Definitely not! There’s a lot that goes into their care. The grooming costs for a Standard are significant. I pay $80-$120 depending on where I take her (or if they come here) every 6 to 8 weeks.  Yes, I’ve tried grooming her. I can’t ever get her feet ‘neat’ the way I like it and it drives me crazy. Some people don’t like larger dogs. Some people don’t want smart dogs, because that means if they get bored, they WILL go looking for something to get into.

But if a standard poodle fits your needs? They’re awesome. They’re loyal. They’ll offer you unconditional love and the occasional laugh. They’ll motivate you to play with them.

Standard Poodles are definitely my perfect fit!

So tell me, why did you choose your pet? What makes your pet the perfect fit for you?

  • From our partners
    • Daintynymph

      I had a lab-chesapeke mix growing up. Retriever dogs are so popular because they’re probably the best for the average person. I’ve fallen in love with Great Danes, but really have a soft spot for all giant dogs.

    • http://www.clumpsofmascara.com Brittany

      OMG look at Phaedra decked out in pink!! I love it! We chose Meiko (Shiba Inu/Eskimo) because we were impressed with both attributes of her breeds. Shiba Inu’s are cat like (even though I don’t like cats, I liked the idea of having a cat dog), intelligent and are only like 30 lbs. Eskimos are also intelligent, fun, loyal and easy to train. Meiko is the perfect blend. She’s friendly, hilarious, playful and while she can be stubborn, she’s really a very smart dog that understands boundaries. I loves my doggy.

    • Ellie

      When I was growing up we had 2 poodles and they were wonderful. We were lucky they never got Addison’s Disease and also they lived a LONG time. Josephine died a natural death just short 1 month of her 20th birthday. Max Andre died a couple years before…they were brother and sister. We now have Weimananers and a Blue Heeler…both are wonderful dogs, but of the two I love the blue heeler more…they are so smart it’s unreal…I always thought I would have another poodle because they are smart and wonderful, but hubby doesn’t care for them, so this is what we have now…sadly, I will have a difficult time choosing another dog if something happens to ours…since there are so many out there that are wonderful and I WANT them all…

    • http://www.plannedresilience.net/ Eleanor

      I just love poodles. I have had many (including standards) in my lifetime, since allergies have always been a problem for me. I am lucky that I have never had one with Addison’s. I never knew about the problem until you talked about it with Phaedra. I’ll keep a look-out for it in my future poodles.

      Right now I have an overly large toy that I rescued from an abusive home (boy does that cause behavioral issues) and a Shi Tzu-Maltese cross (the large size).

      I need to go home and snuggle my doggies now. :)

    • Elle

      I had a standard poodle growing up and he was the biggest goofball on planet Earth. He always wanted to romp around and play and be involved in whatever we were doing. They are definitely a wonderful breed of dog, and a joy to have around.

    • http://pearlsquirrel.blogspot.com Silke

      I am glad my dog doesn’t require serious grooming, that’s a lot of money every 6 weeks! And you really had bad luck with her addison’s disease :(

      When I was a kid we used to have a border collie but intelligent and energetic as they are, it was very time consuming to keep her happy. I just would not have time or space for that at this point in my life so my new dog had to be small and a bit less energetic, and not too smart.

      I chose a mix between a yorkshire terrier and a chihiuahua, and he’s the perfect dog for me. We walk him twice a day, play with him a bit, and we snuggle a lot. He is great with kids and even our guinea pig :) And he doesn’t look too girly, so my boyfriend doesn’t feel like too much of an idiot walking him :p

    • http://noadi.etsy.com Noadi

      I have a big smart dog too. Daisy is a black and tan coonhound. She’s actually the third coonhound I’ve had, I grew up with a redbone and a bluetick (slowly working my way through all the different coonhound breeds). They are wonderful dogs but like poodles they really aren’t for everyone, since they were bred to hunt raccoons they tend to be a bit more active at night, their long floppy ears need a lot of care, as scent hounds they want to track every smell, and also because they were bred for night hunting in the woods they have a baying bark that can be heard for miles so you have to train them well not to bark indoors or you’ll go deaf, and like most really smart dogs you need to keep them entertained or they will get into mischief. However I don’t think I’ll ever want any other dog than a coonhound or coonhound mix, they are affectionate, friendly, loyal, smart, and incredibly good guard dogs because their bark is an alarm that will wake the whole neighborhood.

    • Maggie

      I love standard poodles :) A few of my friends have them and they’re such fun dogs. I’ve never gotten the appeal of the lion cut though, it’s so weird looking. Phaedra looks very sweet with her short-haired ‘do in the last picture!

    • Pingback: Roundup of This Week’s Posts, Friday May 18, 2012 | Phyrra | Beauty for the Bold

    • http://vulcanbutterfly.blogspot.com Vulcan_Butterfly

      Great post! I have two cats as I am a bit more of a cat person than a dog person. Also, my husband and I both work full time and are just now moving into a house with a yard so it would not have been a good thing to have a dog in a smaller space with no yard. With cats, they are perfectly content to sleep all day while you are at work and they are not as “needy” as a dog. They’re nice to cuddle with and play with but they don’t need as much constant attention as many dogs do. They are also quiet and can be exercised in the house which is a good thing for me as well as it is COLD for a lot of the year where I live. It is definitely a good idea to consider your lifestyle and where you live before getting a pet. I know of a few people who acquired large dogs when they did not have the proper amount of time to train them or space for them to excercise and I think this is very irresponsible and cruel to the dog. It makes me very sad when I see that happen because the animal has no choice in the matter.