In an earlier posting I told you that we had certain criteria that we were looking for in our dog search. You may wonder how we came up with that criteria. Well, we found an online quiz. Here is the link: http://www1.dogbreedinfo.com/search.htm
The quiz makes you consider things like whether you want a pure breed or a hybrid dog, whether you’ve ever owned a dog before, whether you think you can control a dominating dog, the size of your yard, etc. The quiz is fast and tabulates the responses to spit out a list of dogs that might be appropriate based on your answers. When we put in our responses, the list we got contained the following dogs: Cocker Westie, Miniature Labradoodle, Petite Goldendoodle, Miniature Schnoodle and Whoodle.
Notice that most of these dogs have a little poodle in them. My guess is primarily because poodle mixes are by far the most hypoallergenic dogs out there, or so I’ve been told. You may notice from the picture of Opie that he doesn’t appear to be very poodlelish. There’s a very good explanation for that. He has no poodle in him. He is a mix between a Schnauzer and a Yorkshire Terrier. Okay, how did we end up with a Yorauzer instead of an “Oodleish” type dog?
When we surfed the web for all of these Oodle dogs and we didn’t find one within 100 miles of our location. Hold on — that’s not exactly true. We did find some Oodles in our area, but they were either too old, inappropriate for children , adoptable only with their Tasmanian devil litter mate, or missing an eye or a leg or pancreas. I suppose if we’d had more patience we would have found a sound and healthy Oodley pup that fit our criteria, but the boys had already gone completely against character for 6 months. We’d made them wait until we got back from 3 weeks worth of travelling in the summer and they were literally chomping at the bit. Too be honest the boys weren’t the only ones yearning for a furry little mammal to cuddle.
Is our little Yorauzer right for us? Well, let’s see.
1. He is not only hypoallergenic, but he seems to be anti-allergenic. I am not assailed by pollen allergies when I am walking him outdoors. He’s a cure! Hallelujah and don’t tell the pharmaceutical companies!
2. He is house trained!
3. He loves me slavishly!
4. He loves the boys slavishly!
5. He is a smallish medium-sized dog!
6. He fits compactly in our car on rides to the dog park.
7. He ‘s not a picky eater!
8. He comes when called most of the time.
9. He has learned to sit when commanded to most of the time.
10. He is a sociable and fun pooch at the dog park and conducts himself well even when faced with bullies.
11. Did I mention that he’s house trained?
Now what are his drawbacks? Well the quiz asked if we wanted a dominating dog. Opie is a bossy little guy who definitely wants to rule the roost. However, he already knows that Dad is the purveyor of food and treats and neither Mom, Dad or the boys wants his little smelly dog bottom on the couch.
He is territorial. He doesn’t like anyone other than us to come into the house. He hates the mail carrier, the UPS guy and anyone and everyone walking down the street. He doesn’t seem to like men an awful lot and barely tolerates Dad. He barks and growls at our very friendly favorite neighbor. His favorite spot is right under my chair.
He steals shoes, socks and anything that looks interesting . Luckily the kitchen trash has a lockable lid on it. He is not a picky eater.
He does not fetch and if he does fetch something certainly won’t give it to you without a vigorous game of tug of war.
Did I mention that he’s not a picky eater. We’ve been to the vet to the tune of about $300 for various tummy troubles. Now, he’s on the expensive vet provided food.
Oh and yes, he’s expensive. Here’s his tally:
$200 adoption donation. ( We got him from a rescue organization and that fee covered his shots, spaying/neutering , microchipping and flea treatment and volunteer foster family overhead.)
$230 Emergency Vet Fee ( Tummy trouble was very severe! Intravenous fluids, antibiotics, anti-emetic, ant acid and special vet food, Parvo test)
$170 Initial pet supplies ( dog food, dog bed, ball, hedge hog toy, tug of war rope, new collar, bag of treats)
$50 flea killer for yard, special cleaner for puppy accidents ( so far unused), grooming wipes to combat bad doggy butt odor between groomings, doggy brush, doggy toothbrush and doggy toothpaste
$100 initial check up with regular vet
$130 check up for recurrence of tummy trouble, special vet doggy food 12 day supply, doggie antibiotics, doggie probiotic powder to fix tender doggy guts
$25 pet grooming ( The most reasonable cost here!)
$180 ( anticipated cost of initial session with trainer/animal behaviorist to help us deal with Opies “ugly man doll”/ territorial issues)
Okay, did I mention that we’ve now had Opie the Opulent for a little over 2 weeks.
Is Opie the right dog for us?
Even with his little foibles and the fact that he was not on the list of dogs that fit our family, even though he’s expensive as all get out and is personally responsible for them adding a new clerk over at Centinela Feed, I’d say yes.
He is the right dog for us.
As I write this, Opie is playing wounded caribou with the boys outside. They are having a great time! So far, I’d say he’s worth the love and affection that he’s spreading in our family. If you pet him on the side of the head he will collapse on the floor and lay on his back, not his side, for a full tummy rub!Is he one of the breeds on the quiz list? No, but who cares? He’s the dog for us. He fits. He’s just like us — territorial, a little bossy, not a picky eater, prone to tummy troubles, occasionally obedient, warmly affectionate and yes, costly.