“I’ve wanted a dog for 5 or 6 years and decided when I finished school, that would be the right time.
I knew that I wanted a poodle. I found a breeder online that my partner and I liked. She had good reviews and when we contacted her she was very responsive.
She happened to be having a litter when we wanted a dog, so we decided to go for it.
We had never had a dog before and this particular breeder was helpful in guiding us through the adoption process. She sent us weekly photos from the time he was born until he was 8 weeks old, when we had him flown from Alabama to NYC.
Once he arrived we got a trainer to help us with the fundamentals. She helped with crate training, housebreaking and basic commands.
I underestimated how much energy poodles and puppies have.
We walked him a lot and went through lots of rope toys (that he chewed through).
We had to change our expectations for being social. We couldn’t be away from home for too long. He required our constant attention for about 4 or 5 months. We weren’t comfortable leaving him in his crate for more than 2 hours.
As a pianist I thought playing classical music would calm him down, but when he wants to play there’s no stopping him. When I am practicing at the piano he brings me a shoe to get attention (because he knows he’s not supposed to take them).
He lets me know when he likes my playing. He lies under the bench raptured in the music.
Music (especially classical) really does soothe the Standard Poodle.”