Acquired: Breeder (professional)
Training: No training
McAlisterville, Pennsylvania, United States
Posted October 24, 2016
Poodles overall are a fantastic option if you are looking for a dog that is hypo-allergenic and does not shed like a fur coated dog. However, since I have young children, I was looking for a much smaller breed and that is what led me to the miniature poodle. River was just eight weeks old when we brought him home and we immediately began working with him on manners and relieving himself outside. We were able to confidently potty train him in just over two weeks. In his early years, River was extremely high energy and demanded our attention much of the time. He needed to be walked and played with to keep him occupied. This didn’t come as a huge surprise to me because my prior research told me that poodles are one of the most intelligent breeds, but if their brains are not kept active, they could get into trouble. We also opted to crate train River because we both worked outside of the home and didn’t want to come home to a mess if he decided to go investigating the garbage, etc. Crate training River has worked out so well and we still find him taking a snooze in his crate from time to time with the door wide open. Now that River is approaching his seventh birthday, we are enjoying a much more calm dog in our home. He sleeps while we sleep and does not disturb us at night. During the day, he can easily be found on his bed or in a warm, sunny spot dozing or watching the world fly by around him. He is extremely loyal and follows me everywhere I go especially if I am headed to the kitchen. He loves cleaning up crumbs that fall from our table or counter and has become best friends with our youngest child who occasionally sneaks him a bite of food under his highchair tray. There are two main drawbacks to owning a miniature poodle in my opinion. While River is extremely friendly, he is quick to notify us of anything unusual outside of our home. He barks at rabbits, birds, and neighborhood cats. He barks at the neighbors when they walk or drive by even if he has seen them a hundred times before. He is always telling us if something or someone is near our house. For many, this is a benefit of having a dog, but for me, I would rather he be a little more selective with this barking. While his soft, curly coat is one of this best qualities, it is also one of his most expensive qualities. River does need to be clipped and groomed every six to eight weeks in order to maintain a nice, functional coat. Depending on your location, grooming can run $35 - $60 per visit so be sure to keep this in mind. Miniature poodles tend to live a long life compared to other breeds. In fact, I have read and seen first hand that some live into their early twenties if they are well provided for. My relationship with my miniature poodle has been a very rewarding one and I look forward to many more years with this friendly fellow.