For ten months we’ve had a neurotic but otherwise wonderful goldendoodle puppy named Matteo. When the lockdown started, Matteo was already pretty shaggy, but as the quarantine wore on, the situation got increasingly dire…
— robert p. baird (@bobbybaird) April 24, 2020
But good news! It turns out that Matteo’s groomer was still working, in a safe and socially distanced manner. We made an appointment. Yesterday I dropped him off for about three hours.
— robert p. baird (@bobbybaird) April 24, 2020
The photo on the left is the dog I left behind. The photo on the right is the dog I picked up. When I saw him, I said, “That’s not my dog.” The groomer assured me it was. (He was also wearing, inexplicably, a red-and-white striped tie, but I’m sparing him that indignity here.) pic.twitter.com/AAY1RDmH0C
— robert p. baird (@bobbybaird) April 24, 2020
My sympathies are with the groomer, and more importantly with poor Matteo. Poodle crosses mat really badly, and I suspect the dog had to be shaved down this completely because some of those mats were glued so tightly to the skin that anything less drastic would’ve looked like a bubblegum mishap.
(Incidentally, this is a visual example of why the -doodle crosses are so popular; that fluff disguises a lot. )
So cute in both guises.
Seriously. That is not the same dog.
But I’ve never understood poodles. I’m sure they are delightful pets, but they always sit in the dog uncanny valley for me.
@zhena gogolia: True, that!
But one reason we chose papillons over poodles is that, when you live with a poodle, you have to commit to a hour of grooming almost every day, and/or weekly sessions with a professional groomer. Wonderful dogs, in general, but High Maintenance in every sense of the word…
Oh my God, that is hilarious.
Our dog, a pit mix, looks like that most of the time (super short hair). When I went to meet her at the shelter, they claimed she was a pit-basenji cross, and I had no idea where they got the basenji idea, until later, when we discovered that when she’s nervous she doesn’t bark; she yodel-whines. A lot. We took her out tonight while the kid roller-bladed and she yodel-whined because she had to stay with the seated adults instead of following her boy around. Normally the noise makes me crazy, but tonight I videoed it, because it felt like she was just expressing what we’re all feeling these days.
@Martin: Sure he is. Like you’ve never gotten a haircut that made your ears / nose look enormous? Especially as a kid?
I love doodles, they are pretty smart and have great personalities, very playful. Thanks goodness my dog requires zero upkeep.
My husband finally got me to tackle his hair, it was getting pretty wild. I think I actually did quite well, and he seems happy. My hair, on the other hand, needs a very intensive full foil and trim. No way I’m touching it. Please FSM, let there be some good hairdressers left when this is over!
I will never understand why people like poodle mixes, I say to myself as I spend my daily hour of vacuuming up my Golden’s hair. ?
@Anne Laurie: Oh, no, I have. And that’s easy to do with me. There may have even been crying involved. But my parents still recognized me. I’m trying to see the anatomy of right dog in left dog, and I don’t see it at all. But then left dog looks weird to me anyway.
@Cleardale: We decided that corgis should come with a Roomba as an accessory.
That’s great because Matteo won’t need another clip for a long time.
He might need a sweater, though. I think he looks really cute in the “after” photo. But cold!
@Anne Laurie: My parents have had standard poodles since before I was born and they don’t need weekly professional grooming (unless you’re doing the whole show dog thing). Every month to six weeks maybe, with some brushing out of mats in between.
They’re very smart dogs, but like other smart breeds you have to make sure that they’ve got stuff to do or they’ll find their own amusements which might not be to your liking.
I’m in dire straits – I was overdue for a trim when we (WA) shut down. I had an appt scheduled the day AFTER. ?? I was seriously thinking of calling a pet groomer to help get my thick mop head under some sort of control… That pic has changed my mind!???
@Martin: One of my late poodles liked to whack the start button on the Roomba to watch it run. Your dog sheds, my dog not only didn’t shed, he vacuumed.
Pure poodles have more predictable, less tangly fur than doodles. My current guy, a poodle-doodle (one parent is a poodle and the other one is also a poodle, but it sounds cooler than plain “poodle”) is one year old today, but so far shows little interest in the vacuum. I always keep my dogs in a short clip, so there really isn’t much maintenance at all, just a little clean up now and then between groomer visits every 6-8 weeks. There is no dog hair to be found anywhere in my house and I’m an extra-lousy housekeeper!
I think the dog is still very nice looking after being shaved.
Cover all the mirrors for two
weeksmonths. Friend’s samoyed was a very, very floofy, dignified girly-girl of a dog, who shedded virtual tumbleweeds of fur each spring. They’d brush her out in the front yard and the balls rolled down the block.
It was hilarious the first time I saw her haul herself out of a mountain lake–with the ginormous coat flattened she was a stick of a dog, maybe a third smaller than you’d think. Luckily, I don’t believe she knew that.
I have a lab x poodle, 3/4 lab 1/4 poodle – he looks like a wirehaired lab, easy to brush, doesn’t need trimming but sheds like fury. A big anxious goofball of a dog. Only recently has he been showing any poodle level smarts: he taught himself how to unscrew jar lids. I don’t leave jars OR pop top cans on the counter anymore.
I had a poodle growing up. He was a great dog but pretty high strung. Professional grooming was pretty stressful for him, and we didn’t care for the look (they glued bows on his ears!), so at some point we started grooming him at home. I did it for several years, until I left for college. Every six weeks or so we used a shaver to give him a slightly curly coat everywhere. It wasn’t too much trouble. Maybe because we didn’t try to brush him very often in between?
What I meant by ‘High Maintenance in every sense.’ Lotsa people think all poodles are neurotic, but in my experience, a lot of them are just stressed out from not getting to use their brains… like above-their-grade-level kids confined to reading chapter books in primary school. Poodles aren’t as demanding as border collies, but they’re much better companions when they’ve got something to do beyond accessorize the decor.
@Cleardale: Poodle mixes are fine, it’s the names that grate on me. “It’s a shoodle, what’s yours?” “A broodle.”
Mingobat (f/k/a Karen in GA)
Chauncey’s a poodle/bichon mix. He goes to the groomer every six weeks, about twice as often as Iggy (mini schnauzer) and Muppet (terrier-whatever else-poodle mix, with a terrier-whatever else coat). I got Magic Touch grooming spray to use on him after baths. So far it’s working fine — no mats, which is good because he’s almost due for another full groom but I’d rather not go out unless it’s absolutely necessary despite living in Georgia and being allowed to take my dog bowling my god my governor is a moron.
I’m with you, that’s not the same dog.
@dmsilev: Also, while it various by individual, the -doodle crosses I’ve known have the worst of both coats. The ‘fur coat’ that sheds, heavily in the case of lab mixes… and the ‘hair coat’ that doesn’t shed but does mat. So the loose fur falls out, and gets matted into the hair, forming nasty bubblegum mats. (Maine Coon cats have the same problem.) You can ‘cord’ a poodle’s coat, like a puli’s, but I can’t imagine even attempting to do that with a -doodle cross!
I feel lucky, sort of. I have a beagle, so grooming involves brushing her once a week. And giving her a bath when she decides to do the hound thing and roll in whatever stinky thing she comes across. I haven’t done anything to my hair in years. I wash it and throw it into a bun and go.
Now all I have to worry about is the fact that I’m a retired Public Employee and Mitch F’ing McConnell wants me to live under a bridge and starve.
Gin & Tonic
I’m thinking by the time I get to have a professional haircut I’ll be able to sell the stuff by the pound. I have very thick hair that grows fast.
Well, poodle mixes can be surprising. I was sure when I got Lovey, knowing her mom was a poodle, that I wasn’t going to have to deal with all the shedding. With Koda being a Lab, we deal with enough stray dog hair floating around the house. And in her puppy stage, she lived up to my expectations. But about a year in, she started shedding even worse than Koda. Turns out, the vet thinks her dad must have been a min pin and they shed as badly as Labs. You just never know.
Well, knowing I wasn’t going anywhere and because I used to chop off my hair to donate when it got long enough, I cut my own hair about a month ago. Took it from the middle of my back to shoulder length. The thing about really long hair is no one can really tell you’ve cut it, and I took over 6 inches off ?
I got my first standard poodle (Mike) in 1997, my second (Charlie) in 1999 (absconded with my sister in 2000), my third (Tucker) in 2001, and my current miniature poodle (Sully) in 2011. The first two were from okay breeders; the last 2 from rescues. All lived a good, longish life, but each of the standards had diseases related to the small gene pool (laryngeal paralysis, Addison’s disease, sebasceous adenitis). Each of the standards had magnificent temperaments – smart, funny, affectionate. (The mini is another story, but after 9 years we’ve worked it out). Ultimately I was the groomer for the standards. Coat maintenance for poodles is necessary but takes far less time than vacuuming.
Poodles Rule. Labs drool.
Mike and Tucker can be viewed in all their glory at the link.
Yes he is. Unfortunately, he has lots of company.
I have to bring the dogs out for the last time tonight and it’s raining hard again. Been raining pretty much the entire day. Ugh.
@Miki: :-) Some fine-looking, fun-loving, hounds there.
Kay (not the front-pager)
Is that what it is? My Loki drops these hand-size mats that seriously look like some kind of animal – long fur on the top, and a felt-like mat on the bottom. He has such a fine undercoat! I brush him every day, but the mats pop up from 1 day to the next, and once a mat forms there’s no brushing it out or breaking it. It either has to be cut out (tricky with a jumpy cat) or allowed to fall out. Let me tell you, it’s creepy to come across one of those mats first thing in the morning before you’ve had your coffee.
@Another Scott: Thanks. Their big personalities took up a lot of psychic space but it was totally worth it. The non-shedding is a bonus but not the main draw to the breed.
@dmsilev: @Juice Box: @Anne Laurie:
Totally agree about relative intelligence of poodles. Brightest dogs ever, I mean almost as smart as the average cat. [ducking] And no, poodles srsly Do Not Shed. I only ever kept a puppy clip on my guy (ghods I hate that showdog clip) and no, it just wasn’t that big a deal to brush him. It did help that fairly early on we got some clippers and I learned how to use them. I even generally could clip his claws, though I do admit dogs’ claws are more difficult qua claws that cats’. When you consider individual personalities, yeah, well. You’re on your own.
Otoh, I think I know from actual high maintenance dogs: I had a couple of Huskies as grandpuppies, and used sit for them. Hoo boy! They’re bright dogs too, and the mayhem a bored dog that big can cause is memorable.
@Miki: I had my poodle from 8 weeks or so until he died at 16+. His sire and dam – wait, that’s horse talk – uh, parents were both Miniatures, but she birthed 5 pups, and not a one was larger than 12″ that’s the line between Toys and Miniatures. I picked the funniest, feistiest one of the lot, and that worked really well. He’s been gone for decades now, and I’m still getting verklempt right now.
This shit about poodles being neurotic is about how idiots treat them, not the breed
eta: love your boys! Handsome!
I have a Lhasa Aspo who was due just as things were closing down. I always kept him short but if this goes on much longer, he’s going to look like one of those show dogs with hair down to the floor. However, I have to say that his hair looks better than mine. I can’t tell you how many of my friends – generally quite sane – would head for the hairdresser if they could. My take is, what difference does it make? We’re not seeing anyone anyway.
@SectionH: My Sully (mini) is the most assertive dog I’ve ever had and I think that’s what led to him becoming a stray (someone said “git” so he got and no one claimed him – I was adopter #3). He needs a firm hand, then he’s better than fine. But give him an inch and he tries to control his world and everyone in it. Obedience training (to level 3) has helped both of us. He’s wicked smart, a tad neurotic because he never learned he could control his behavior, and the most loving creature in the Universe.
And he doesn’t shed.
@Kay (not the front-pager):
Our late Kitty Annie had a big dose of Maine Coon (though she was usually barely 8 pounds soaking wet). She had trouble grooming herself when she had pemphigus and we had to get her a lion cut.
Day One, she was Pissed As Hell. Day Two, she was prancing around like a fashion model showing off her new leg warmers. ?
@Kay (not the front-pager): My Becca gets mats like that. What can work is to just cut off the top maybe 1/3 of the mat, so that you don’t need to get close to the skin. She’s then surprisingly amenable to me finger-combing the rest of the knot apart. I just start from the outside, pinch the mat with the fingers of my left hand, and gently pull and work it all out with the right, a little bit at a time. She’ll often roll over and purr for this. Sometimes there’ll be a small compact bit left that can easily be clipped off. I’ve been amazed at how far the mats gather fur from. “Results may vary” of course.
It’s amazing how much that dog, trimmed up, looks like a smooth saluki. [We have a smooth saluki, hence the reference.]
@Mathguy: Wow. But not entirely surprised. Whack the hair off a standard poodle and you see a high tuck and a deep chest. This picture was taken the same day I shaved off the big hair Mike wore throughout the winter. He was a swimming fool, especially when he was sans hair. He was also and always a running fool.
Poodles, as a type, were originally curly-coated generalists – water, upland, cart, herding, etc. See, for immense fun, The Poodle History Project.
Just One More Canuck
A literal shaggy dog story
Both pictures are cute ?
@Miki: I knew a saluki breeder who swore poodles had more sighthound ancestry than is generally credited. They are, after all, much more visually oriented than most dogs… and they do have that daft sighthound sense of whimsey!
Some reason, pictures from Twitter ain’t coming thru to me (running latest release of Classic Waterfox)
So looked up Mr. Baird’s Twittrefeed, found this interesting shade on Bedbug Bret and FTFNYT
in case you might be interested
Iam had my doodle for 11 months and just about have learned to groom him myself, he really doesnt mind it at all ,he did so well when the groomer did him I gave it a shot. I did invest in the correct equipment. He’s 80 pounds with lots of hair. Use to have a giant schnauzer and groomed him as well ,it really gives my dog a lot of us time and I think that had a lot to do with his cooperation. He’s one of the smartest dogs I’ve had period and believe it or not I found him on C/L and i get stopped all the time by people who want to know why he is so happy. I tell them I just brushed and combed him and he likes to show off. I do use a furminator on him at least once a week an at least a comb thru daily , it gives us some quality time together and he never ever mats up.iam training him to let me do between his toes now ,he doesnt like it to much but persistence is paying off. Hes so smart I tell my friends he house trained himself .