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Great Lakes Poodle Club of Chicago, Inc. Rescue Report

The Great Lakes Poodle Club of Chicago, Inc., was founded in 1949 and is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to the rescue and placement of homeless poodles, providing services to the Great Lakes Region.

Our Mission is to bring together individuals who need to surrender poodles with people who are interested in providing a poodle with a forever home. When a poodle becomes available for adoption, we match the poodle being surrendered with an appropriate forever family. As we do not have a facility, the available poodles remain in the care of the surrendering family until they are adopted. To facilitate the process, the adopting family completes a questionnaire that is used for screening prospective homes and facilitating a match.

Guidelines for a Successful Adoption

Cindy Crawley shared Mid-Atlantic Poodle Rescue’s “Guidelines for a Successful Adoption” with us and gave us permission to pass this on to adoptive families.

“We want you and your new poodle to succeed as a new family and so we offer the following suggestions based on our experience and observations.

The poodle, although crate-trained and possibly house-trained, will need to relearn house-training in your home. That means not letting them out of your sight until you are confident in their ability to hold their bodily functions. One tried and true method for house-training is to tether them to you in the house. Connect a long lead (6 feet, rope or string can also be used) to the poodle’s collar while you are working, preparing dinner or watching television, any time that you are up and about and the poodle is up and about in the house. In this way, the poodle can be observed and if they give an indication of needing to relieve themselves, they can quickly be escorted outdoors. When they do relieve themselves outdoors, they should be roundly praised for being a good poodle. A yummy reward is a good idea here as well. When you return indoors after successfully pottying outdoors, you can release the tether for a bit, maybe 30 minutes to an hour, before reattaching it.

If you are too busy to observe the poodle or the tether is inconvenient or when you leave the house, put the poodle in their crate. If you allow the poodle free run of the house before they are completely reliable with house-training, they will go off somewhere and potty in secret and set your training back. They could also cause injury to themselves and damage to your house. Crating the poodle when you are gone guards against potential trouble.

Spanking the poodle, swatting them with a newspaper or rubbing their nose in urine or stool will not help to house-train them. It will frighten and confuse them. If you find a house-soiling accident, ask yourself why you were not observing the poodle more closely and what you could have done differently to prevent a house-soiling accident.

If the poodle makes a small puddle of urine on the floor when you lean over them, this is known as submissive urination and is a sign of a timid poodle. The treatment for this problem is to not lean over the poodle, to not be overly effusive with the poodle when entering a room or the house after being away, to avoid eye contact when greeting the poodle, or to sit on the floor to greet the poodle rather than bending over it to pet it.

When you bring the poodle into the house, you should confine them to one small room, preferably in their crate, where they can observe everyone coming and going. No one should get down on their hands and knees and peer into the crate nor should they put their fingers into the crate. After a bit, let the poodle out of the crate but limit their access to just the one room. Introduce them to all members of the family very calmly and matter-of-factly. No one should attempt to pick up the poodle. Noise should be kept to a minimum. The poodle should be allowed to retreat to his crate if necessary, but keep the crate in a high-traffic area of the house where they can observe comings and goings and learn not to be afraid of normal household sounds and activities.

If there are other dogs in the house, the new poodle should be introduced to them very carefully, with both dogs on lead. The new poodle should not be fed close to the other dog as the new one may not know which food bowl is theirs and a fight could start. The poodle could also be fed in their crate.

If there are children in the house, the poodle should be introduced to the children while on lead. The poodle should never be left alone with the children until you are absolutely certain that the children and the poodle are safe with one another. IT IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE ADULTS TO KEEP THE CHILD SAFE FROM THE POODLE AND THE POODLE SAFE FROM THE CHILD. This point cannot be overly stressed. Rescue does not take poodles with a history of biting, but rescued poodles can be very fearful and stressed and could react to a quickly moving small child or a child that may grab at the poodle.

If visitors come to the house, the poodle should be crated or tethered until you are confident of the poodle’s ability to meet strangers. Do not encourage visitors to pet the poodle or allow them to hold the poodle. This would be very stressful for the poodle. If the poodle is confident, the poodle may choose to interact with visitors. To force any interaction that the poodle is not ready for will destroy trust and set the poodle back.

"Thank you for giving a homeless poodle a forever home.”