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Thread: Picking the right puppy

  1. #1

    Default Picking the right puppy

    Hi everyone,

    As some may have seen from the other thread, I'm looking at getting a puppy, and could use some advice on picking between pups in the litter.

    We've had a play with a couple, and I just wanted to check if what we've observed tells us about temperaments.

    The two pups are:

    8 week old female:
    When playing with her brothers, she gets involved, sometimes jumping on top of the other pups, but never barking. She is also seen sleeping in a basket whilst her two brothers play boisterously around her. She lies there quietly without paying too much attention. When someone she knows comes in sight, she is alert, tail wagging and tries to get to that person.

    When taken out of her familiar environment into a seperate area with strangers (me and my fiancee), she is *very* timid. She shakes slightly. She allowed me to place her gently on her back and hold her down gently with one hand, pawing slightly at me as she lies there. She doesn't react too much to loud noises, or try to investigate the noise (shaking keys near by). Her tail remains generally by between her legs, and she shakes slightly when held, but doesn't object to any touching. When left to sit on her own her tail wagged a bit, and she licked my hand, but was still very shy.

    I worry she may be a little bit too timid, but this may also be because she was new to this place (only arrived yesterday), and is still unsettled.

    A test of bringing my hand in fast as if to strike (obviously without making contact) shows no reaction, so I'm confident she has not

    8 week old male:
    This little guy is very boisterous when left with his brother and sister. He jumps all over the others, plays and tears up newspaper. He barks a bit, and he and his brother dragged the bed his sister was in all across the floor. He jumps up when people come in.

    He is similarly timid when taken out, tail down, but wags it a bit more when held. He struggles a bit when placed gently on his back, but when left alone, snuggles close to me and licks my hand, tail wagging. He is frightened a bit by loud noises, backing away from the shaking keys into me. He doesn't seem to want to investigate too much.

    I worry he's a bit too boisterous and destructive by the way he tears up things.

    Are either of these at all concerning in terms of puppy temperament? If neither pup is right, we'll pass on them and search for another litter!

    Thank you so much everyone,

    Paul

  2. #2
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    I'm confused. I thought you were buying from a breeder, but you say these pups only arrived at this place yesterday?

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beloz View Post
    I'm confused. I thought you were buying from a breeder, but you say these pups only arrived at this place yesterday?
    Unfortunately it is from a pet shop, but one who works with a local breeder who has done all the genetic tests, etc. (sorry for the lack of clarity!)

  4. #4
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    Do you have that in writing, which genetic tests have been done, etc? Sorry but I'd be suspicious of anything a pet shop tells me. And personally I also wouldn't trust a breeder that would subject their pups to being on display in a pet store.

    It would be pretty hard to assess a pup's temperament from a brief visit anyway, that's one of the things you would want to talk to the breeder about. But them having only arrived there the day before after being taken away from their mother would make it even harder.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beloz View Post
    Do you have that in writing, which genetic tests have been done, etc? Sorry but I'd be suspicious of anything a pet shop tells me. And personally I also wouldn't trust a breeder that would subject their pups to being on display in a pet store.

    It would be pretty hard to assess a pup's temperament from a brief visit anyway, that's one of the things you would want to talk to the breeder about. But them having only arrived there the day before after being taken away from their mother would make it even harder.
    Thanks, I will make sure I get everything in writing if we do go from the petshop.

    To clarify, if anyone can please put me in contact directly with an (ethical) spoodle breeder, I would be forever grateful. (by ethical, I mean as ethical as possible for spoodles) At this stage, a pet shop who have a very good reputation with a number of local vets (unassociated with them - not paid by the pet shop etc) and the RSPCA , who are saying all the right things is the best we can do at this stage.

  6. #6
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    Hi paulg

    A lot of red flags on this one.
    1. no promises that are important to you have been made in writing (regards the shedding and adult size of the dog etc)
    2. you haven't met either parent dog (ideally both) or seen what kind of conditions they were kept in. It's highly likely - despite what the RSPCA says (which is something like we can't prove they're doing the wrong thing in a law court) - that the pet shop is a front for a puppy farm.
    3. you haven't seen any documentation that proves the parent dogs have been tested for anything.

    And the puppies are timid - which to me - suggests they have not been socialized with people - or enough different people. I got my puppy from AWL. Her sister wasn't shy but wasn't interested in me or playing with me. My puppy was friendly but liked to investigate everything, and liked everybody and every dog. She's stayed the same since bringing her home.

    I would not get a "timid" puppy and I would not get one from a petshop. Vets tend to be fairly diplomatic about sources of puppies. They make more money from a sick puppy - so some are ok with that. And they don't want to tell a determined customer something they don't want to hear like "I don't know of any ethical spoodle breeders around here".

    Maybe a better question to ask the vet(s) would be something like - if you or one of your friends wanted a puppy - where would you go to get one? And what breed(s) would suit my critieria. You might not get recommended the pet shop.

    The RSPCA list on "responsible breeder" is this.
    What is a responsible companion animal breeder? - RSPCA Australia knowledgebase

    I'd suggest you'd get a fail on these criteria
    1, 2 (not leading a normal life, not enough socialisation with different people), 3 (if they met this they would not be selling through a pet shop), 4 - you have no proof of this, 5 - no proof here either, 6 - unlikely, 7 guarantee? will they take the puppy back?

    And they meet this criteria for puppy farm
    What is a puppy farm? - RSPCA Australia knowledgebase
    Puppies from puppy farms may be sold via any avenue of sale such as the internet, newspaper ads, markets, carboot sales, pet shops or sometimes at the puppy farm itself. Puppy farms may also use a house as a 'shop front' to sell their animals from, so you don't get to see the appalling conditions they breed dogs in.

    The conditions may not be appalling - the dogs may be kept in clean cages similar to holiday boarding kennels - but are they getting enough people time, exercise time, training time, are the parents health tested?, are the puppies what they promise (eg non shedding medium dog adult size) - how long have the puppies been in the pet shop (they're supposed to stay with their mother until 8 weeks).

  7. #7
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    Huge red flags for me also. Why on earth would you pretend to strike them? Why put them on their backs and hold them like that? Right from the start you have exhibited threatening behaviour to them.
    Last edited by Di_dee1; 08-18-2012 at 12:19 AM.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  8. #8
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    I think trying to find an ethical breeder of designer dogs is like finding a needle in a hay stack. I would never ever ever buy from a pet store, surely the fact that you haven't met the parents, seen where the dogs were raised and by who would be a turn off. Not to mention the medical and behavioral cost to the puppy, the lack of socialization etc. it's fine that you have picked this cross breed, but finding a responsible breeder will take time... Sometimes a long time. A pet store will never tell you that they are associated with puppy farms, that's not good for business. They want your money (and I'm sure they are charging you a bundle too) and they will do what ever it takes to get it... Just like any business.

    I also agree with Di-dee too, why would you do that do a puppy?

    There is no psychiatrist in the world like a puppy licking your face.

  9. #9
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    I don't have time right now for a super long, explanatory post, sorry, BUT both puppies you have described are showing clear signs of timidity and lack of good socialization. I feel both will likely have fear/anxiety issues into adult life.

    I would give this litter a wide berth, indeed.

    I dont know any ethical spoodle breeders, sorry, but you will NOT find them shopping in pet stores. I would advise much more research, speaking directly to the breeder and visiting in person at least once. To me, that's a minimum. If that is too hard, then visit your local shelter and adopt.

    As with others, I ask- why roll puppy on his/her back and hold?

  10. #10
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    I have read articles on this turning puppy on it's back etc etc, I'm assuming that Paulg has also.

    I will suggest as I always do that you consider a reputable registered breeder and visit the puppies in their place of birth, get to meet at least one parent and speak the the breeder so they can best match you to a puppy that matches your family.

    Spoodle or as I call them Poodle X because what is the Spaniel? If you like the Poodle X then I would search thru rescues. Unfortunately a puppy will come up.

    Our very large shopping centre W'field has a pet shop in it. It also states that it gets it's puppies from PIAA breeders. Some are mixes and some are pure and they are all charging far more than what you would be able to buy the puppy direct from the breeder. I don't care what their sign says I would never buy a pup from them.

    As a registered breeder of purebred Whippets I'd never in a million years sell a pup to a pet shop regardless if they are industry approved or approved by the queen herself. Because the fact remains that these people are breeding puppies to put in petshop windows and while many people are genuine buyers their easy access means many are bought on the spur of the moment.

    I would suggest a purebred poodle or one of the spaniels from a good breeder or if looking for a poodle cross consider a rescue - please.

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