I realize I haven't written anything about the puppy since bringing him home. What can I say? He's kept me busy! LOL
As usual, time has flown by and now Tripp is just a few days shy of 6 months old. Already? He's grown so fast, yet at the same time it seems like forever, because we've done so much this year...
After the long trip home, he settled in a few weeks before starting basic obedience classes. He's done very well with training considering I've actually slacked off a bit in that department (relatively speaking) - haven't practiced or worked on as many new tricks as planned. But that's a smart Poodle for you! :-) I also learned that Tripp is naturally endowed with "agility ability" and insists on competing in that venue. As much as I love it, I hadn't planned to put agility trials on my list due to expenses, but how can I not with this boy?! If necessary, I will put another sport on the back burner until I can afford to do it all. Probably musical freestyle and advanced obedience because I do still plan on getting his CGC and hopefully novice obed. titles. This of course will not stop me from practicing all the advanced moves on my own! We'll be prepared when the chance comes - besides, he has his whole life to dance, and those sports make great "retirement" activities. Skijouring is still on the current list, as this is more of a backyard/recreational sport anyway, with minimal expenses. And I also still plan on showing a bit in UKC next year. While this is just for fun, it will be good experience for me and useful for grooming and presentation skills, so I'm counting it more as business related. ;-)
And speaking of hair, OMG, I don't think I could own a Poodle without also having a grooming salon! He certainly would be naked otherwise (which is actually great if I wasn't showing or grooming competitively!). Good thing Tripp likes the blow dryer and tolerates brushing just fine, as he experiences these things constantly. And that's not much of an exaggeration now with snow on the ground! The downside to Poodle hair is that everything sticks to it, so after every outing, I have to brush and dry the snow off the dog before he's allowed access to most of the house - being a Poodle, of course, he loves furniture; however, furniture doesn't love wet dogs. ;-) In this respect, I am actually glad I needed to clip his body short (creative coloring removal), as not only does it make for less hair for stuff to cling to, it also offered a jump start on coat change. There is some wonderful texture coming in, and I'm glad there's less to get matted through this stage. Again, if I wasn't a professional, I'd being saying "shave it all off" before you could blink! LOL
Back to his mental development, I took Tripp to some agility classes to get a little official training under his belt before the weather forced us to hole up. As expected, he did amazingly. We also did some "water therapy" to teach him to swim properly. Yes, really. As for socialization, I am thankful for a well bred dog with stable temperment, as I've slacked the most in this department. We've not gone out on the town every week to expose the pup to new things or been as proactive as I generally recommend. Of course, he is exposed to a lot in the grooming salon (which he loves - insists on coming to work with me!) and we do get out now and then. From the beginning, Tripp has taken everything in stride, being a wonderful breed ambassador. He loves going new places, and thinks every person should stop and say hello, and every other dog is a potential playmate. Most people don't believe he's a puppy, as he's generally so well behaved. Again, that's a Poodle for you!
Tripp is a wonderful retriever, and is turning into a nice grooming assistant, fetching dropped tools - even my metal comb! Most things get tossed about and played with a bit before being returned, but after all, he IS a puppy! LOL He really does great for his age. :-) Full of potential...
Check out my videos of him growing up on YouTube!
I've been on "pupternity leave"... Took a week off to finally pick up my Standard Poodle puppy in NC. He turned 10 weeks old yesterday.
Last week we made our way to PA, for a stopover in the Amish Country. (Hey, I said last year that I'd need to go back this fall for more oat flour, so it worked out well! LOL) Then it was a long weekend in the Smoky Mountains, to allow time for both visiting the puppies & going over stuff with the breeder, plus a little sightseeing. We checked out a big antiques mall one day, and went gem mining the next. Who knew that the area was one of the richest in rubies? It was pretty neat, and we managed to find a few tiny rubies and sapphires. Most of which I needed help from one of the pros to find, as they mostly looked like rocks to me! No outstanding carats to get excited about, but fun nonetheless. The "loaded" buckets with pre-cleaned gems from around the world were much easier to find things in. I got lots of interesting stones out of mine. My favorite was probably something called a rosebud, which I actually thought was a marble when I first found it. Talk about a dirty job though! And that Carolina red mud - oy! I had to literally scrub my arms in the shower and still didn't get off all the staining. haha I don't envy the breeders trying to keep up white show poodles down there. ;-)
I was tempted to bring home two puppies, as the gorgeous cream boy with awesome temperament had become available, but my willpower held out... after all, one puppy at a time is more than enough work! LOL (Now if the adoptions were a few months apart it might be a different story... ;-) My Parti boy "Tripp" settled in with us nicely. Fast learner - walking pretty well on leash after just a couple days, learned stairs without much trouble, and perfectly comfortable taking the elevator. Very good traveler, esp. for his age. Not much fazes him. (That's just one difference between a well bred & raised pup and unsocialized “backyard-bred” dogs!) He's very friendly and expects every person to come say hi to him. Though he's not over-demonstrative like a Lab might be... just regular Poodley sociability. :-) Loves hugs and kisses from his family. Gets spoiled rotten by Nana & Papa, and okay, a little from Mom too. hehe Typical puppy (twerp!) that needs constant supervision and consistent rules, of course.
Right now we're just working on settling in at home, learning house rules, routines, etc. before we begin any "serious" training. Will wait a week or two, then introduce the clicker, start puppy kindergarten, take a couple swim lessons, all the while continuing socialization. Still taking one day at a time - if I had to think of all that needed doing, my head would be spinning! First thing when he gets bigger will be showing in UKC conformation. We'll obviously have started obedience before then, but won't likely compete till he's well over a year, depending on when he's ready. The more complicated musical freestyle will come even later, though we'll work on those moves from the beginning as well. As for the hopes of skijoring, he'll be introduced to the harness probably this winter, but of course won't do any "real" pulling till after 2 years when fully developed physically. Everything will also revolve around what he enjoys. If he truly hates a certain sport, then I'm not going to force it - it's not that important! Basic manners and obedience (and behaving for grooming) obviously are non-negotiable, but competition sports are supposed to be fun for both human and canine.
So the suspense is over... now comes the sleep deprivation, and just in time for Christmas - the terrible teens! LOL Just guessing. ;-) Puppies sure are cute and fun, but I always look forward to adulthood! hehehe Besides, grown Poos are still cute and funny! :-)
Ode to my First Poodle
The wait seemed like forever,
but it wasn't all that long;
only three decades till finding
that one who'd to me belong!
At least five years of searching
for good possibilities,
months and months of networking
to narrow down to three...
But everything fell through
for one reason or another,
until I happened on a litter -
I knew the father and the mother!
Just in the planning stages,
I waited yet some more,
for the due date to come near,
then puppies playing on the floor.
A few more months of patience,
till my baby could come home,
finally I'd have my Poodle
and nevermore would be alone.
Artistic grooming canvas,
training partner, friend;
my "perfect destiny"
a "trip" that has no end.
AKC/UKC reg. Tintlet Destin Parfait, call name "Tripp"
(kennel name Tintlet, "destin parfait" means perfect destiny in French)