The Enchanted Poodle Club, Inc.



White Poodle jumping through a tire


Black Standard Poodle participating in Agility


Silver Poodle doing Agility


Corded Poodle in Agility


White Standard Poodle - Puppy Trim




Black Standard Poodle - Show Groomed  

  Choosing a Poodle:



   No dog should be purchased on impulse.  All puppies are adorable.  Purchasing a Poodle should not be done on a whim.  Purchasing a Poodle as a gift should never be a surprise to the recipient.  A Poodle is a living being and one needs preparation before bringing a dog into the home.  Careful research about the Poodle should be done before even looking for that responsible breeder.

Toy Poode, Miniture Poodle & Standard Poodle   Youíve made the decision that the Poodle is right for you and you are right for the Poodle.  You understand the expense of maintaining a Poodle.  Now you want to know how to choose the one for you.

   First of all decide if you want a small Poodle, a medium size Poodle or a large Poodle.  Here's some questions to ask yourself:

  1. How much space do you have for the Poodle?  You can keep a large Poodle in a small space provided you have time to exercise it at least twice a day.  All three sizes of Poodles the Toy, Miniature and Standard are active dogs and all need to work in some way.

  2. How much exercise can you give the Poodle?  The Toy Poodle can exercise in a small space, running and playing in the house or going for short walks.  The Miniature Poodle can run around the house and go for longer walks.  The Standard Poodle needs more exercise being a larger dog.  You need a large yard or long walks at least 2 times a day.  Obedience training, agility training, therapy work is good exercise for all three varieties of Poodles.  A Poodle that has a job is more companionable.

  3. Where will the Poodle live?  The Poodle, all sizes, is a human companion.  Therefore it does best when living in the home with the human partners.  Will the puppy sleep in the bedroom, kitchen, living room or where?  
    White Standard Poodle - Ungroomed or trimmed

  4. How much Grooming are you willing to do?  Are you willing to learn to groom the poodle yourself and buy the equipment needed to keep up the coat?.  Are you willing to spend the dollars to take the Poodle to a professional groomer?

  5. What do you plan to do with your dog? So you want a couch potato?  Then the Toy Poodle or Miniature Poodle may be for you.  If you want a jogging partner, the Standard Poodle may be for you.  All three varieties are good watch dogs because all three will alert you to anything unusual happening.  All three varieties are suited for obedience, agility and/or  therapy work.  The Standard Poodle and Miniature Poodle are suited for hunting, herding, hiking and jogging.

  6. Do you have children?  All three varieties can be taught to co-exist peacefully with children.  However, the Miniature Poodle and Standard Poodle are more suited to children because of the larger size and durability.  You will have to teach the children and the Poodle to treat each other appropriately.  Every dog has its breaking point so that children MUST be taught the proper way to play with the dog.  Allowing Black Poodle the dog to nip the children teaches the dog to bite.  Allowing the children to abuse the dog teaches the dog to defend itself and the children to disrespect animals.  Supervision of both children and dogs is a must when the two are together.


   Begin your research for the variety you have decided fits your lifestyle by reading Poodle books, magazines and visiting the following Poodle websites:

American Kennel Club
Poodle Club of America, Inc.
Versatility in Poodle, Inc.

Brown Standard Poodle in puppy trim   Check out websites of different Poodle breeders.  Ask members of The Enchanted Poodle Club to help you understand the standard for the breed.  Go to dog shows and talk to the handlers after they have finished showing their Poodles.  Watch the Poodles in the conformation ring or in the performance rings.  Talk to the owners of Poodles and ask what they like about their Poodle and what they dislike about their Poodle.  You may have the Poodle you choose live with you for 15 years or more so please choose wisely.  There are several Poodle books on the market; study them.


   How long have you bred Poodles?  What activities do you participate in with your Poodles?  What genetic testing have you done on the sire and dam?  What genetic testing has been done on the grandparents and great grandparents?  What are the results of these tests?  Ask to see original or copies of the specific tests.  The breeder should be able to explain the tests and results to you.  For instance if one parent is a carrier for neonatal encephalopathy and you will be spaying or neutering your Poodle, you donít need to worry.  If you are buying one of the puppies to breed later, you need to have it tested for that genetic anomaly.  Educate yourself on the various health testing for the particular variety your interested in.Black Poodle

   The breeder should know the dogs in the pedigree behind your puppy and be able to talk with you about the dogs in the pedigree.  Donít be overly impressed by the champions in the pedigree.  Be tuned in to the structure, health and temperament of the parents of your puppy.  Be impressed with the activity of the puppies.  They should be spirited and social.

   Find out at what age the puppies are allowed to go into new homes?  What type of house training has been started?  What training classes or trainers does the breeder recommend?  What food does the breeder feed the Poodles?  What vaccination protocol does the breeder follow?  Who is the breederís Veterinarian?


   Youíve done your homework.  You understand the standard for the breed.  You understand what the Poodle was bred to do.  You understand that the Poodle has to be somewhat hard headed to have the heart to find downed birds in any type of cover in any type of weather.  You understand that the Poodle is very social and thrives on human contact.  You understand that the Poodle hair continues to grow and needs regular grooming.  You understand your own personality.  You know if you can work and live with a timid Poodle or a dominant Poodle or the Poodle that goes off by itself or just the Poodle that wants to be social and not bossy. White Poodle Puppies

   When you find a Poodle breeder, visit the puppies often so that you get a feel for the one for you.  Talk with the breeder about each puppyís temperament.  Donít pick the largest one just because it is the biggest.  Study the puppies at play and at quiet time.  Tell the breeder what you can work with best.  No matter which puppy you choose, you must be committed to training.  The Poodles you see in public that you admire so much had a lot of training.  Being dogs, Poodles donít come knowing your expectations.  This takes committed, consistent training on the ownerís part. 

   Stack the puppy you are interested in on the grooming table.  See where it sets its feet.  Do the front feet line up under the top of the shoulder blade?  Do the toes of the back feet line up with the point of the rump?  Is the back level when the puppy is stacked?  Does the puppy stand with its head up but not thrown back over the shoulder blades?  Visit the illustrated standard from Poodle Club of America to better understand how to judge the structure of a Poodle.  Additional sources for assistance on how to choose your puppy include: The Puppy Puzzle DVD, the Puppy Aptitude Test and Guide to Picking the Perfect Puppy.


   Before you brought the puppy home, you decided where it would sleep, play, potty and eat.  You purchased a crate big enough for it when it is grown.  You have a blanket or crate mat for it to sleep on.  You acquired feed and water bowls, a collar and leash, a brush, comb, shampoo and conditioner.  You bought the puppy the feed it is used to eating while at the breeder's house. 

Black Poodle Playing   From day one you set the routine, the schedule you and the puppy will live with.  After the ride to the puppy's new home the puppy will need to go outside to relieve itself.  Then it can come into the house for a while.  Soon after eating and after playing, the puppy will need to go back outside to relieve itself.  If you want it to use one part of the yard, always take it to that place.  There are books on housebreaking your puppy at the pet stores and articles online.  You must set up a schedule and the puppy does not get the run of the house.  It must be supervised to catch it and take it out when it starts sniffing around in circles.  You can teach it to hit a bell with its paw before taking it outside each time.  When the puppy learns to ring the bell to go out, you have a signal to alert you to open the door.  Training is a consistent routine.  You do the same thing each time.  Dogs donít reason the same as people.  Dogs are into routine and the expectations of you, the pack leader.White Standard Poodle - Being Groomed

   You teach the puppy to sleep and be quiet in its crate.  This is its personal cave where it is safe when you arenít supervising.  Some breeders will have already crate trained the puppies.  When the puppy is twelve weeks old and all puppy vaccinations are complete, enroll it in a puppy kindergarten class.  As it matures you can enroll in more advanced training classes.  This training helps you become the leader and the puppy to bond with you.

   Set up a time two or three days a week to groom the puppy.  Teach it to lie still as you brush it.  Play with its feet and toes so that it becomes accustomed to having its feet worked with.   You will want to acquire basic grooming equipment to assist you with making home grooming easier.

   Call the breeder and ask questions about anything you arenít sure of with the puppy.  Call the breeder to report how the puppy is doing.  You are family of the breeder now so stay in contact. 


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Updated: 04/09/2008
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