Why Choose Our Pups?

We believe that the development of a happy, sound, healthy dog begins even before they are born, and the time from birth until they leave for their new homes also carries a burden of responsibility for us as breeders. As a result, we do the following to give your pup the best start possible:

  1. We feed a high-quality food to our parent dogs to avoid deficiencies that could cause improper fetal development. At 4 weeks gestation, cooked eggs are added to our pregnant moms' food to provide for their extra protein requirements.
  2. We no longer have ultra sounds done on our pregnant bitches. Read the following: http://www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com/50-in-utero-human-studies-confirm-risks-prenatal-ultrasound/.
  3. Our parent dogs are genetically tested for the diseases most common to the poodle breed (descriptions of these diseases can be found on our Genetics page). Despite all of this testing, we still offer a 3-year "all-inclusive" genetic health guarantee. What we have learned from our various searches for dogs for our hunting/breeding program is that few breeders test beyond hips and eyes, while other breeders offer a guarantee against "life-threatening" genetic diseases only. (Most genetic diseases are not life threatening, but, rather, life altering.) Yet other breeders may only cover genetic issues they test for (which are few in number). Please read the contract carefully if you are considering a pup from another breeder, as someone offering a guarantee against life-threatening diseases, or only those they test for, is basically not providing a guarantee at all. We are also aware of breeders who offer replacement pups only as a part of their guarantee. You need to make sure you know what the guarantee is before assuming it is as great as it sounds on the surface.
  4. Our puppies are born in a special whelping area adjacent to our master bedroom. Research has proven that too much stress on the dam has a negative effect on puppies. Bitches are innately aware of the total and complete dependence puppies have on them. With this living arrangement, we are able to ensure all adversarial stimuli is avoided during whelping and shortly thereafter, thereby avoiding undue stress on our precious pudels. This safe atmosphere builds a strong foundation for our puppies from their birth and into their most formative stages, and their existence within "our space" ensures that the needs of each pup and the mom are met.
  5. At around (depends on the dam) 3 weeks of age, our puppies are moved to a family area. This age is oftentimes referred to as the Awareness or Identification Period. The pups now have use of all of their senses, but still need to be housed in a stable environment. Being raised in the house allows them to become accustomed to household noises and the constant movement of people and other pets which will be a part of their lives. Living in our family area also provides socialization opportunties that would be lost if they were raised elsewhere. (Puppies who are raised in garages or other isolated areas can become so traumatized when they go to their new homes that the owner is working double time to help them to overcome their sensitivities.)
  6. We conduct Early Neurological Stimulation on our pups, which is said to better enable them to handle stress as an adult. Read about Early Neurological Stimulation by clicking on the link. This article was written by Dr. Carmen L. Battaglia (author of Breeding Better Dogs).
  7. Our pups are sent home with a small towel that has their littermates' and mom's scents on it. This can be placed in the pup's crate at night to comfort them during the first few nights away from "all things familiar."
  8. Our puppies are temperament tested using the Volhard Puppy Apptitude Test (with some additions for hunting candidates) to enable us to assist each owner in selecting the right pup for their family/needs.
  9. Puppies receive age-appropriate vaccinations and are wormed at 2, 4 and 6 weeks. We vaccinate at 7 weeks and recommend follow-up shots at 11 and 15 weeks of age. We also recommend titering after that, rather than automatically giving shots every year (there is enough proof out there that the antibodies reside in our adult dogs for at least 3 years following vaccination).
  10. Each pup is microchipped (a $50 value) to assure they will have all of the help they need getting back home if they are ever lost.
  11. Each puppy family is given general puppy care information, as well as copies of the genetic test results of the parent dogs, the pup's AKC registration application, and enough food to either transition to your own quality food or to allow enough time for you to purchase some of our brand.

We have made a large investment in the diversity of our breeding stock, and that isn't because we believe that dogs with high Wycliffe (whose genetic makeups are found in the largest percentage of standard poodles) are bad. Quite the contrary. We believe that all purebred poodles are necessary to correct the damage done through intense inbreeding. The reality is that even some of the diverse lines we have been blessed to find are inbred, but they are inbred on dogs from different countries, which has allowed them to create diversity in larger numbers of standard poodles. Breeding to "different" dogs is the key to restoring balance within standard poodles and lowering the frequency of certain diseases, etc. We are committed to that.

While written by a cat breeder, this article discusses inbreeding's effect on the immune system. It is our hope that it will help you to understand why we have sought out the dogs currently used in our program and why breeding for color has become very unimportant in the scheme of things. Health (and temperament) must come first.

Book recommendations can be found on our Links page.

I hope this page helps you to know how much we care about the pups we produce. Each pup will leave our home armed with the basic skills necessary to cope in a changing environment. The rest is up to you!

The following were written by unknown authors:


  1. My life is likely to last 10-15 years.  Any separation from you is likely to be painful.
  2. Give me time to understand what you want of me. 
  3. Place your trust in me. It is crucial for my well-being.
  4. Don't be angry with me for long and don't lock me up as punishment. You have your work, your friends, your entertainment, but I have only you.
  5. Talk to me. Even if I don't understand your words, I do understand your voice when speaking to me. 
  6. Be aware that however you treat me, I will never forget it.
  7. Before you hit me, before you strike me, remember that I could hurt you, and yet, I choose not to bite you.
  8. Before you scold me for being lazy or uncooperative, ask yourself if something might be bothering me. Perhaps I'm not getting the right food, I have been in the sun too long, or my heart might be getting old or weak.
  9. Please take care of me when I grow old. You too, will grow old.
  10. On the ultimate difficult journey, go with me please. Never say you can't bear to watch. Don't make me face this alone. Everything is easier for me if you are there, because I love you so.


From time to time people tell me, “Lighten up, it’s just a dog,” or, “That’s a lot of money for just a dog.”  They don’t understand the distance traveled, time spent, or costs involved for “Just a dog.”  Some of my proudest moments have come about with “Just a dog.”  Many hours have passed with my only company being “Just a dog,” and not once have I felt slighted.  Some of my saddest moments were brought about by “Just a dog.”  In those days of darkness, the gentle touch of “Just a dog” provided comfort and purpose to overcome the day. If you, too, think its “Just a dog,” you will probably understand phrases like “Just a friend,” “Just a sunrise,” or “Just a promise.”  “Just a dog” brings into my life the very essence of friendship, trust, and pure unbridled joy.  “Just a dog” brings out the compassion and patience that makes me a better person.  Because of “Just a dog” I will rise early, take long walks, and look longingly to the future. For me and folks like me, it’s not “Just a dog.”  It’s an embodiment of all the hopes and dreams of the future, the fond memories of the past, and the pure joy of the moment.  “Just a dog” brings out what’s good in me and diverts my thoughts away from myself and the worries of the day. I hope that someday people can understand it’s not “Just a dog.”  It’s the thing that gives me humanity and keeps me from being “Just a man or woman.” So the next time you hear the phrase “Just a dog,” smile, because they “Just Don’t Understand.”


God summoned a beast from the fields and He said, “Behold people created in my image.  Therefore, adore them.  You shall protect them in the wilderness, shepherd their flocks, watch over their children, and accompany them wherever they may go, even into civilization.  You shall be a companion, an ally, a slave.” “To do these things,” God said, “I endow you with instincts uncommon to other beasts:  faithfulness, devotion, and understanding, surpassing that of people.  Lest it impair your courage, you shall never foresee your death.  Lest it impair your loyalty, you shall be blind to the faults of people.  Lest it impair your understanding, you are denied the power of words.  Let no fault of language cleave an accord beyond that of people with any other beast, or even people with other people.  Speak to your people only with your mind and through your honest eyes.” “Walk by their sides, sleep in their doorways, forage for them, ward off their enemies, carry their burdens, share their afflictions, love them and comfort them.  And in return for this, people will fulfill your needs and wants, which will only be food, shelter and affection.” “So be silent, and be a friend to people.  Guide them along the way to the land that I have promised them.  This shall be your destiny and your immortality.”  So spoke the Lord. And the dog heard and was content.


Grieve not, nor speak of me with tears, but laugh and talk of me as if I were beside you, I loved you so . . .

Twas Heaven here with you! --Isla Paschal Richardson--


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