RESPONSIBLE DOG OWNERSHIP
Responsible Dog Ownershp
We took an informal poll on the forum and asked owners what they felt was involved in Responsible Ownership. It was interesting to note that the vast majority of suggestions were for decisions that should be made before the pup even comes home.
Responsible dog ownership begins before the pup arrives, and is a lifetime commitment. We hope that this page provides you insight and acts as a guide to the responsibilities of doodle ownership.
OLLIE & LITTERMATES - SUNSHINE ACRES
It's important to have realistic expectations of the amount of time a pup will demand. Your current lifestyle will/must change and how will you deal with that? Choose a time in your life in which you will have adequate time to devote at first to training a new pup, and later to give the regular exercise that an adolescent dog requires. A well-exercised dog is a better-behaved dog.
Who will be the primary care taker for this puppy?
How will they housetrain the puppy?
Where will s/he do her business?
Who will be home to walk the dog during the day?
What's the "trick" to successful housetraining and what is reasonable to expect?
Where will the puppy eat, sleep, and be crated?
What kind of training method will they use?
Where will they go for training class?
When you go on vacation, who will watch your dog?
What will the new puppy's impact be on your current animals?
A Dood can live a healthy 15 years. Good food and proper Veterinary care are ongoing expenses and a commitment to the dog's better health.
Other ongoing expenses: grooming, treats, toys and equipment. Additional expenses include training classes, books, vacation kenneling, and even doggie daycare. Budgeting for the new family member is highly recommended.
If you've never brought home a pup before, you should be prepared to learn how to raise a dog. There are smart shortcuts to training and living with dogs available in books and videos. Spend time learning new methods - it'll likely help you in the long run.
What energy level are you looking for in a dog? What size?
A standard sized Dood usually starts at 50 pounds and large males are often around 80 pounds - that's a Texas sized dog. If your family situation is better suited to a dog that generally grows from 25- 45 pounds - then a miniature Goldendoodle or Labradoodle is a likely candidate. In hybrid breedings the size of the pups falls between the two parent sizes. Most will be around mid-sized, but some will remain small, and others grow to near standard proportions.
Another consideration would be a hybrid of two smaller dogs - such as Aussiedoodles, Cockapoos, Maltipoos or Schnoodles.
In temperament, intelligence and allergy friendliness, both Doods are about par. Both are half retriever and half poodle and are intelligent and moderately active dogs. Read the breed desciptions for each of these breeds, and believe the breed descriptions. Doods are not low energy lapdogs.
For an inciteful article on the differences between a Goldendoodle and a Labradoodle in training and temperament, please read the article by Gwendy Joysen, author of The Balanced Canine - link to article
Check out the FAQ pages on the site -
Their biggest difference is in their appearance. Goldendoodles tend to have longer fur, are more reliably non-shed and, accordingly, require more grooming. Labradoodles have shorter fur and are generally lower maintenance.
As Goldendoodles require more grooming than Labradoodles, the cost of grooming is something that should also be a consideration.
First generation Goldendoodles and Labradoodles have proven to live successfully with most families with mild dog allergies. For families with moderate to severe allergies or asthma, a backcross Goldendoodle or backcross Labradoodle is recommended. These are Dood x Poodle crosses, the pups are ¾ poodle.
Goldendoodles and Labradoodles are hybrid dogs and as a hybrid cross they generally grow to be healthier and live longer than either parent line. But genetics can only work with the material given, so it is important to breed only with quality health-tested breeding dogs.
The genetic diseases they can be prone are those shared by both the Golden or Labrador Retriever and the Standard Poodle which are mainly;- Canine Hip Dysplasia, PRA, VonWillebrand's, and elbow and patella disorders.
Learn about the health issues affecting Doods from our easy-to-understand primers so that YOU know what to look for in a quality breeder and can understand the issues:
Hip Dysplasia - A Mini-Tutorial for the Puppy Buyer
What is CERF Eye Testing?
Eliminating Genetic Diseases in Dogs - A Buyer's Perspective
(an essay from the owner of a dog with vWD)
Each breeder runs a kennel by their own standards, and no two are exactly alike. First try to discover where you stand on some of the more common issues.
Some breeders raise their dogs in kennels where they generally live in small groups, as is their nature. As licensed kennels they are under guidelines for health and safety standards. Waiting lists are generally shorter as they have more litters. Home breeders usually only have up to a few breeding dogs and both breeding dogs and pups live in the home.
The best site on the net to scout for Rehome or Rescue Doods is
Their team of volunteers provide a website and forum which is continously being updated. It's the best place to look for Doods available. Ken hosts the site and offers this advice:
There is a questionnaire used by IDOG which can serve as a guideline for you as you search for a rehome or rescue dog to adopt. There is a shortened version of the questionnaire here
Most people spay their female dogs or neuter their males to stop unwanted litters. Unless you are planning to breed your dog, and are willing to take responsibility for all of its offspring - then it is strongly suggested that you spay/neuter your pet dog.
For years the common practice has been to spay/neuter when the pup is about six months old. However, recently more breeders have chosen to spay/neuter the pups before they leave the kennel. Here's a recent article - New Views on Neutering
If you have just found the Dood of your dreams, odds are you are on a waiting list and have time to read up.
It is important for young pups/dogs to socialize, to begin to deal with distractions, to interact with strangers and to be trained. There are some smart shortcuts to training and living with dogs that are available in books and videos. Each hour you spend in preparation, will save you ten in training. Check out the different methods used, to find the one that your pup best responds to.
Current Popular Favourites:
The Dog Listener by Jan Fennell
How to Raise a Puppy You Can Live With by Clarise Rutherford and David Neil
Childproofing Your Dog : A Complete Guide to Preparing Your Dog for the Children in Your Life by Sarah Wilson and Brian Kilcommons
Having trouble trying to figure out what to pick up before the new arrival?
Here is a terrific checklist to help you prepare for the new puppy - New Puppy Checklist
Your breeder will likely tell you that you should NOT be allowing your pup out in public places until after the Parvo vaccinations have been completed.
Parvo is a deadly silent killer, so please take heed of this warning. Some areas have more incidence of Parvo than others, so follow the advice of your Vet and don't allow your pup outside until they feel that the pups' immune system can handle it.
Once your pup is fully immunized, then they are ready to go out and meet the world.
Many families find the use of a crate makes housetraining easier, and that the pups use their crate as a quiet spot to nap. Remember that when pups first come home they are 'babies' and have very small bladders. For the first few weeks they should be allowed to relieve themselves every few hours at most. Then, as they grow, they will be able to hold it in comfortably for longer periods.
Hang a large puppy-proof bell from a sturdy ribbon by the door, where you let out your pups. Everytime you take them out, say 'outside' and jingle the bell. At first you will take them out often. For the first week or two they should be let out:
- when they wake up
- after they eat
- after they drink
- if they start to sniff and circle
- every 20 minutes or so while they are awake
Thankfully puppies sleep a lot. But the trick is to let them understand that outside is for relieving themselves. It's a new concept for them - but if it's clear, then they will understand what they need to do. The less accidents they have, the faster they learn. It takes some dogs only a few days to learn to ring the bell to ask to go out. (And for a while there, you're trained to the bell, because they go often - but it's worth it in the long run.)
Puppies go through a teething stage where they will need to chew. We can control what they chew.
Like kids, pups learn faster if you show them what they can do, as opposed to what they can't. Litter the house with rawhide chewsticks (the cylinder shaped ones that are made up of bits so pups can't choke) and soft toys. Each time you cuddle a pup, hold a soft toy near their mouth, because they naturally want to chew. They will chew the toy, not your hands.
If you see them about to chew the leg of a chair, say in a deep voice, 'NO', pull them away and then hand them a rawhide, or some toy they can chew. (Then it's a good idea to spray the chair leg with a sour apple spray). These pups are clever, they learn fast.
Be a responsible dog owner and train your pup to be respectful of others. Train them not to bark, please pick up their waste and respect others' rights to NOT love your unruly dog and not want to be jumped on. Most urban areas have leash laws, poop'n scoop laws and noise laws which help to make common areas enjoyable to all people.
Consider microchipping your Dood. It will help provide identification should your dog ever get loose. There are at least two companies that provide microchips, you might want to consider what shelters in your area use for convenience sake.
If you have a pool teach your dog to stay out or learn where the steps are. A dog will naturally swim to the point it fell in and will drown working to get out just feet from the steps. Take it in and out via the steps for the first few times in the pool. Next gently place the dog in the pool at another place other than the steps and guide it to the steps. Do not leave a dog alone anywhere near the pool until it can be placed in the pool at any location and naturally swim to the steps to get out.
If a problem occurs at any point in the dog's life, the responsible thing to do is to first notify the breeder about the problem.
Even a breeder with a warranty that doesn't cover the problem would be well served by getting feedback about unhealthy offspring. Otherwise valuable feedback is lost to the breeder, and the same breeding dogs can be used again. If the breeder doesn't know there is a problem, they can't fix it.
The Safe And Sound Safety Factor Challenge is a fun online site for children which teaches them how to safely handle a dog in certain situations.