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View Full Version : OK, all - need some last minute advice!



Julie S
6th April 2007, 08:04 PM
Woooooo-hooooo!!!!!!!!!!! I get to see our baby on Easter Sunday ... that's only 2 days away!!! :rah: :jump: b*n*n*

OMG, you can't believe how long I've been waiting for this weekend (well, yes you can, b/c you probably waited, too ;) ).

As most of you know, we have pick of about 3 boys from an all blen litter, and a single girl from a tri/blen litter. We were originally slated for the little girl, but are back-tracking a little since we learned she's quite the alpha, and our breeder felt that we would find more of the characteristics we wanted (uber-friendly, laid-back, affectionate) in one of her boys. She's definitely one of those who believes the boys are better. :lol: ;)

I'm actually a bit stressed about it, along with being insanely excited. How in the world am I going to pick from all that cuteness???

I need a game-plan. I've read all the old posts I can about how to pick a puppy, but any advice you can give me knowing my situation would be great. Should I rely fully on our breeder? Should I watch the puppies play together first, then take them aside to play alone with my husband and I? What warning signs should I be looking for? What great qualities will I be able to see?

merlinsmum
6th April 2007, 08:07 PM
Let the puppy pick you - both ours picked us and they just so happened to be the ones we had expressed an interest in ;)

Julie S
6th April 2007, 08:09 PM
Let the puppy pick you - both ours picked us and they just so happened to be the ones we had expressed an interest in ;)

This may happen. ;) Although some people say not to go this route because the puppy who "picks" you is often the most forward dog.

Joanne M
6th April 2007, 08:16 PM
My guess that no matter which puppy you choose, or which puppy chooses you there will be no wrong choice, afterall you're choosing a cavalier, what's not to love! Good luck and enjoy your visit.

Julie S
6th April 2007, 08:17 PM
My guess that no matter which puppy you choose, or which puppy chooses you there will be no wrong choice, afterall you're choosing a cavalier, what's not to love! Good luck and enjoy your visit.

This is very true. ;)

merlinsmum
6th April 2007, 08:25 PM
My guess that no matter which puppy you choose, or which puppy chooses you there will be no wrong choice, afterall you're choosing a cavalier, what's not to love! Good luck and enjoy your visit.

This is very true. ;)

Yes, definitely agree - the fact that you have chosen to have a cavalier means dog, bitch,blen, tri, B&t, or ruby, you've made the right decsion! Doesn't matter if the pup chooses you or you choose the pup - whichever way you'll love him/her to bits ;)

Lisa_T
6th April 2007, 09:13 PM
And as the owner of two bitches, I have to speak up for the girls. Both of mine are affectionate, and laid back except when they want to play. And it turns out that Holly is an alpha dog, but until Amber came along she was the most submissive (to people, obviously) affectionate cuddlebug of a dog. She's less clingy now, but she still adores her cuddles. And if cuddles are what you're after, my breeder told me that tris- whether dog or bitch- are often insanely affectionate.

Just to confuse things a bit further... :yikes :D

I'm sure you'll know when you see them.

Julie S
6th April 2007, 09:16 PM
And if cuddles are what you're after, my breeder told me that tris- whether dog or bitch- are often insanely affectionate.

Just to confuse things a bit further... :yikes :D

LOLOLOLOL!!!! I've never heard this before ... you opened up a whooole new can o' worms! :lol: :lol: ;)

natalieandmike
6th April 2007, 09:47 PM
I don't know if I truly believe that (the tri thing). Bianca is quite the love bug. However her dad was a tri! :lol: Hmmm.... Anyway, Good luck with your choice; with a cavalier , how can you go wrong? -Natalie :flwr:

Julie S
6th April 2007, 10:14 PM
OOPS.

Just realized I posted this in the picture gallery. Uhhh .... icon_whistling

Feel free to move it. ;)

Karlin
6th April 2007, 11:08 PM
I would watch and handle them all, talk again while you are there about the characteristics you want in your adult dog, and ask the breeder for her advice (though if she has a pup she thinks is ideal already, I would mostly be getting more detail about that pup and spedning time with him). I cannot stress enough that if you have a breeder who truly cares about and knows her puppies, and you in turn have a clear idea of the type of dog that would best fit your family *go with the breeder's recommendation*. It really sounds as if she is very good at assessing personalities.

I totally do NOT believe puppies pick people -- you just get whatever one is most curious, closest to you, least sleepy at that moment, and most likely -- most dominant of the group that is there. Or one will draw your eye for your own reasons -- could be markings, the way it plays etc. But these are not really good reasons to pick a dog or a puppy ( believ me lots of time working with pound dogs only confirmed this belief -- people pick pound dogs for lots of sentimental wrong reasons and the dogs sadly often come back in... only to be put down 24 hrs later as they are then no longer strays (getting several days to find a home) but surrenders (getting at most, 24 hours).

If you KNOW you do not want a strong and potentially challenging personality in an adult, then please do not go for the first puppy that comes to you as it WILL be the dominant one.

Puppy personalities are quite complex though and an exeperienced breeder is the ONLY person who will have oberved them to such an extent, and know how puppy traits translate into adults, to be able to give you a clear insight into which dog will be the dog you want as an adult.

They will ALL be cute but I rehome on average 3-4 cavaliers a month now, most of them because they were the WRONG personality for the family and eventually did not suit what the family had wanted in a dog and no longer appealed enough to make them want to keep it. Not all families can accommodate all types of personalities. For example, Jaspar would be a challenge for a lot of people! He's my number one boy, probably will be the number one dog of my lifetime, but he is a challenge at times and I have no doubt many other people would have rehomed him as he has a very alpha personality -- exactly those listed for picking out likely prospects for agility or working dogs -- though he is quite submissive with other dogs. This is what I mean about puppy/dog personalities being complex -- you cannot make simple judgements or assumptions based on only how the puppy behaves with you, or with its littermates, you need the advice of someone who has been handling those puppies every single day for weeks now, and/or who knows how to do multiple step evaluations on personality.

Just some other personal examples/observations: Jaspar would not be a good dog for a family with kids, nor would Leo, for different reasons. Lily is a superb dog with kids, but also is headstrong and stubborn. Jaspar needs to bond strongly with ONE person (as does my mom's cavalier -- which means they wouldn't really make whole family an ideal dog). Leo is very laid back and likes to play, but would be a disappointment if someone wanted an activity dog for agility and obedience etc.

By 8 weeks a breeder can tell almost all of these things already. I don't think I would want to utilise a breeder who didn't pay enough attention to be able to tell a buyer such things and didn't offer advice too! I think you sound like you have a great breeder... and I would pick out a puppy using her expertise and recommendation. :)

PS I would guess she will probably have a choice of two possibles but will have one she feels is especially a good match. :)

*Pauline*
6th April 2007, 11:12 PM
You'll fall for one of them and that will be that. Don't worry. You are lucky you get to pick from 4. Maybe you won't have to make up your mind on the first visit.

I wanted a girl and ended up with a boy and don't regret it for a minute. have a lovely time when you go and have your questions written down. :flwr:

On my 1st visit, my breeder gave me a print out about her dogs and some blank sheets for my questions. She said once you see the puppies, you forget everything so I could write them down for my next visit. :)

natalieandmike
6th April 2007, 11:14 PM
I like Karlin's advice here. Our breeder knew we were first time dog owners and steered us away from another dog who was quite "headstrong" and bossy..also probably would have eaten our little Baxter bunny first chance she got! Trusting your breeder may help you have some ease with your decision. I sense you have great love for these dogs, and will make it work in any event. :flwr: -Natalie

Karlin
6th April 2007, 11:26 PM
This might be helpful -- from a good breeder's site. I think this is true -- *most* puppies fall in the middle range and will suit most families. You want to avoid the extremes unless there's a particular reason to go for same (eg an elderly couple might be perfect for the shy, quiet puppy; an agility competitor might want that dominant, highly confident pup). Kepp in mind that amongst those happy playful middle ground pups, a lot of the shape of the final dog will be what happens in the next year of rearing the pup, not just its basic personality -- the fun part! :lol:


In any one litter, the majority of the puppies are comparable. In each litter there is usually a highly energetic dog, a more reserved dog, and the rest fall in between. ... Remember that when you are picking out your puppy, you are seeing the litter of puppies for a very isolated time period. Some people are drawn to the first puppy that shows an interest in them, some are attracted by the physical appearance of a certain pup, and other people try a battery of “puppy tests” in order to determine the right dog for them. During this isolated time period, the puppies may be reserved, demonstrative, active, or quiet. What you should remember at this time is to ask us questions about the puppies for we have been watching and handling the litter since birth. We do have a more comprehensive and accurate picture of each puppy’s typical behavior. If you ask for our opinion or help, we will make recommendations and try to help you find the puppy that is best suited for you.

Julie S
6th April 2007, 11:44 PM
I like what you all have said. Thank you. :) I guess I'm just trying to be as prepared as I can be ... seeing as though I've been waiting for this moment for so long. :)

Thanks for your advice, Karlin, as usual. I do love our breeder and she comes from nothing but wonderful recommendations. She knows what we want out of a dog and I'm going to put my faith in her to help us choose.

And Pauline - yes, I am very lucky to choose out of 4! icon_whistling Although I have no idea if by the time I get there one or more will be spoken for. I originally wanted a female as well but my heart is wide open for a little boy to steal it. :luv:

Maxxs_Mummy
6th April 2007, 11:55 PM
I sat on the floor with all the puppies and had the one who fell asleep on my lap :lol: I had wanted him all along anyway and have never regretted it, he's the most wonderful furbaby in the universe :lol: