A Community of Labradoodle & Goldendoodle Lovers

About a month ago we heard a stray dog howling in the middle of the night outside our door.  We just recently moved into the barn that we are renovating and have allot of land, with no close neighbors.  It was odd that he came up to our front porch.  I peaked out the window and there was this big shaggy head with a big nose, sniffing at the window.  It startled me because I couldn't see his eyes - shaggy long hair covered them.  So to keep the story short - he stuck around until morning and my husband determined that he was friendly before I went outside.  He had hopped up on our picnic table and when we approached him he was all bouncy and goofy and kept slapping me with his paws.  But he also cowered - got nervous and scared when my husband approached him.  He would only let me pet him.  Poor guy was very stinky & dirty with matted hair and sticky burrs caught up in his hair.   My husband told me not to feed him, but I did because he was skinny under all that hair and he was so hungry.   He hasn't left - We get home from work in the evenings he is just sitting on the picnic table waiting for us.  Since we have had a few cold nights I picked up a bed for him and he sleeps on it in the barn were its warm.  

I took him to the vet to see if he had a chip to try to locate the owners but unfortunately he doesn't have a chip or a collar.  I had the Vet do all of the tests to make sure he was healthy and up to date on his shots.  The Vet said that he looks like he is a mix of poodle and some sort of retriever so I started googling to find out more information about his bread.  We thought if we knew more then he would be easier to find him a good home.  There were several people in the waiting room at the vet's office that said he may be some sort of a doodle.  Which led me to this community forum.  Can anyone tell me if Shaggy (that's what we named him) could be a goldendoodle?   He has such a funny, sweet personality and he's really smart.  I took him to get groomed today and they were able to get all of his knots out by shaving him.  He no longer looks Shaggy LOL.  One of the people from the Vet's office asked if she could have Shaggy but now he's wiggled his way into our family.  He is so nice and gentle with our old Cocker Spaniel so we are keeping him with us.

I would like to know if he is a Goldendoodle - anyone know how I can find out?

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Comment by CJ, Gracie, and Quinn on February 15, 2016 at 4:26pm

Awesome! He may have felt more at ease being less closed in. He's one lucky pup to have made his way to you. God sure was looking out for him :)

Comment by Beverly and Eli on February 15, 2016 at 3:23pm

So glad you're making things work for this fella. Good for all of you!

Comment by Lisa Coleman on February 15, 2016 at 2:46pm

OMGosh!  Quinn looks tired after chewing all of those papers.  LOL.  Yes, I'm a bit of a container freak and office supply junkie.  I like to keep everything in it's right spot, however my craft room is a disaster - I just have too many projects that are half done LOL.   Shaggy is about 50 lbs so I picked up a large black crate and I'm going to make it into a den-like space for him.  On Saturday we left for about an hour and we put him in the laundry room and left the laundry door open so that he could walk around the barn area.  We moved the equipment to one side and made sure there wasn't anything out that we though would hurt him.  When we came home he was sleeping on his barn bed and it didn't look like anything else was disturbed.  Sunday we did the same thing when we went to church and he was laying on his bed again so I think keeping him contained to the inside of the barn might just work for him.  I have lots of questions about all kinds of things so I will start other threads to get more advise on those things.  Shaggy is definitely making things interesting around here.   

Comment by CJ, Gracie, and Quinn on February 13, 2016 at 6:39pm

Yup, DonMarie, too young for AARP, didn't like my newly negotiated contract any better than I did (lime green), and quite possibly he couldn't see the print. He chewed the glasses too; fortunately just cheap cheaters.

Comment by DonMarie & Picco on February 13, 2016 at 5:43pm

Well that makes sense - where is Dogster, Bark, Best Friends??  Something interesting?

Comment by CJ, Gracie, and Quinn on February 13, 2016 at 4:58pm

Quinn's first foray into the world of chewing.

Comment by CJ, Gracie, and Quinn on February 13, 2016 at 12:24pm

BTW, will you come organize my closets??

Comment by CJ, Gracie, and Quinn on February 13, 2016 at 10:04am

Coincidentally, Lisa, we are going through some separation issues with our rescue Quinn. When he first joined us, I had to condition him to my leaving the house. I did this slowly over a 3-week period. Started with going out the door and walking around the house and right back in. Just my leaving him inside when I went outside was stressful to him at first. By the end of the 3 weeks, I was able to make trips to the store and shortly thereafter, we were leaving him (and Gracie) unrestrained in the house for up to 6 hours. I was ecstatic that he was such a good boy! Then after about 3 mos. of goodness, he started to chew. It began with a pile of magazines (which I thought was funny) and gradually escalated to a sofa back pillow and the corner of a very nice upholstered ottoman. I wasn't laughing anymore. It could be boredom or it could be a resurfacing of anxiety--I'm really not sure, but regardless, it's a problem because we have to go to work and sometimes we are both gone for 5-6 hours. The extent and intensity of Shaggy's chewing (he's not idly chewing) definitely points to anxiety. It's a typical issue for abandoned/rescued dogs. Even when he is outside unrestricted, he may spend most of his time waiting for your return, and I'm actually surprised you are able to leave without him trying to follow you. Shaggy needs to feel secure when you are gone and he needs to know that you are going to return. That takes time. It's possible the laundry room may be too closed up, and he may feel trapped and shut-in. When I think about what you have said, I lean toward a large crate inside your living space. No xpen to start. As long as you aren't leaving him for the entire day, he will be fine. The house is where your other pup is and the house is where he spends his nights. By now, he also knows it's where you live. Those things are important. I don't remember if you mentioned his weight, but a large breed crate should be good. He just needs to be able to easily turn around and he needs to be able to lie down without having to curl up. You want to try to put a crate pad inside; hopefully he won't chew it up. You can start with the conditioning by setting it up and throwing toys and treats inside so he goes in and out freely. Then you can start closing the door for a bit. If he seems anxious, feed him treats through the wire openings and tell him what a good boy he is. Keep your voice normal and happy, not sad and sorry. Put a blanket over the top of the crate and maybe down a couple of the sides (or position it in a corner). That will help it be more den-like which is comforting. Each time you close the door, try to leave it closed a little longer and start walking away--again, for a little longer each time. Try to reward the GOOD behavior. If you walk away and he doesn't fuss, come back and feed him a treat. If he lies down--treat!!! Don't treat him when he is fussing and try hard to not let him out when he is fussing. That's why the sessions have to be short in the beginning. You want to be letting him out before he fusses, otherwise you will be rewarding the wrong behavior. Crate training with a very young puppy is a somewhat simple task compared to training with an older dog, but it is doable. Also, Shaggy is very smart. I think with conditioning, he will understand and accept the routine rather quickly. With all this said, you have to do what works for you. Quinn is so large, we can't use a crate, and we have had a hard time trying to create a secure, contained space for him. So we have ended up containing the furniture. We use the xpen to surround his favorite "chew toys" and so far that is working. The problem is not solved, but the bandaid is holding. We are going with the idea that he will outgrow this (he's a year and a half), and I will be retiring in June which will make a big difference in how often he will be left alone for extended amounts of time.

I hope these long-winded posts of mine are not off-putting. I am not an expert, but I've had dogs my entire life and for the past 5 years I have been doing non-stop obedience and agility training. I ask for advice quite a bit in this community and in my IW community. We share experiences and we learn from each other. We share a bond through our pups and only want what is best for all for all of them--sometimes even if it means sacrificing our own comfort!!! Ha! One more thought. If you decide to try the crate training, you may want to start another blog with that sort of title. You will have a better chance of then getting feedback from those who have some experience. Happy Saturday!!

Comment by Amy durbin on February 12, 2016 at 1:27pm
It sounds like he may have separation anxiety. Poor baby. Usually that's where the destruction comes from.
Comment by Lisa Coleman on February 12, 2016 at 1:16pm

Thanks so much for all of the wonderful advice.  We have always had inside dogs because we have lived in a subdivision for so long.  When we moved out here - everyone says that their dogs are "outside" dogs. While that might be fine for some breeds, from what I have been researching - doodles are inside dogs and companions.  Shaggy hates being separated from us when we are home.  I was shocked and surprised when that trainer told me to tie him up!  I thought he was crazy and I decided right then that he was an uncaring person and I would not let him come near Shaggy.  

I've been working from home allot since Shaggy came into our lives.  So he has been my side kick but I have to go into the office to meet with clients so getting his space set up is a high priority for us.  

I think we have allot of options.  Our barn is huge on the inside and we are not building out the middle section -only the front and back for the living space.  We set up a bed in that area already for him to sleep on at night but that didn't last long.  He started to refuse to go out there and would run under our bed and wouldn't come back out.  Now he just sleeps in the house with us at night and he's actually a very good boy when we are with him in the house.  On the weekends when we are working outside and home during the day we open the barn doors and he uses his "barn" bed then.

We have a pretty big laundry room that's inside the barn, separate from the house and has a window unit for when it gets hot in the summer.  The floor is concrete and it shuts off completely from the inside of the barn where all of the farm equipment is.  That's where I have been keeping him for the last two days when I have had to go into the office.   He chewed off all the handles on my plastic tubs and the labels are history now too...  he grabbed the laundry basket off the shelf and shredded a couple of table cloths.  He's like a big toddler!  I wish I would have taken a picture of the aftermath but unfortunately I only have the before pic.  I've since cleared the bottom two shelves and I hope he can't reach the other shelves. The only reason I have this pic is because I was going to print labels at the office to replace my hand written ones - but... I digress... My life was completely organized until Shaggy AKA "Tornado" showed up. He's just a hot mess.  Toy's are destroyed quickly.  I'll have to check out this Kong thing.  He's destroyed Sophie's toys too (that wasn't real hard to do though - she has little soft toys)

Anyway, we will work on a solution that keeps him safe and cool in the summer.  Today it will be 80 degrees so summer is coming on fast.  For now, I have his "barn" bed in the laundry room and hopefully I will still have a washer and dryer when I get home today!  It's still really hard to get mad at him with his cute little face and goofy mannerisms.  

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