My wife and I have cherished the companionship of Standard Poodles throughout our marriage. Each dog has not only brought joy and learning into our lives but also made us part of a broader community of dog lovers.
Lucy: The Mayor
Our first poodle, Lucy, was a blessing in every sense. She was well-behaved, intelligent, and friendly to other dogs. So much so that we fondly referred to her as "the mayor." Her affable nature made her a hit at the beach, the dog park, and anywhere else we went.
We bought Lucy from a mall pet store – a sacrilege to most pure-breed pet owners. We were newbies, freshly married and fell for the pet store’s sales tactics. A few weeks later, the store went out of business, resulting in an unexpected 30% refund on Lucy's price. Hence, apart from being "the mayor," Lucy was also known as the “discount dog."
Lucy's impact on our lives was significant. She helped us learn to care for another being and gave us the confidence to consider having our own human puppy.
Coco: The Sub-Standard
Coco, our next poodle, came from a breeder we met via Craigslist in a McDonald's parking lot. Coco was extremely nervous and would bark uncontrollably at the slightest provocation, particularly when anyone came to the door. She was also aloof, maintaining a five-foot buffer between herself and anyone else.
Unlike the stereotypically intelligent Standards, Coco was a bit of a ditz, earning the title of "sub-standard." Despite her peculiarities, we loved her wholeheartedly. She was "our dog." She made us realize how dogs, regardless of their quirks, grow on you and become part of the family.
Coco's sudden passing was devastating. We were left grappling with a void, but life had a way of filling it.
Oliver and Axton: The Dynamic Duo
During a dental appointment, my wife ended up sharing Coco's story with the dentist. As it turned out, his girlfriend's mother bred Standard Poodles. They had just had a litter, and there were a couple left. A few weeks later, we brought home Oliver.
Oliver was a delight. He was nearly housebroken when we got him, and he effortlessly filled the Coco-sized hole in our hearts. About a year later, we added Axton to our family, giving Oliver a playmate. Two dogs turned out to be more than twice as much fun – the joy they brought was exponential.
We love catching Oliver and Axton in the middle of their play sessions. The guilty expressions they put on are absolutely endearing. Having two dogs might have been one of our best decisions ever.
The Moral of the Story
If you've never had a dog, why not consider it? Yes, the puppy phase can be challenging, and yes, dogs come with responsibilities. But experiencing the love, joy, and companionship that a dog brings into your life is priceless.
Poodles work for us due to their hypoallergenic nature, but there are other breeds that might suit your needs better. And, if you can, consider getting two – they bring more joy than you can imagine!
Remember, getting a dog might lead to a greater journey of love and companionship than you anticipated, just like it did for us.