Happy Tails: Madison the Poodle Princess

Madison, the Poodle Princess

Many may remember the message that CPR had received about over twenty standard and Moyen poodles released by a breeder who was having a health issues sent out shortly before Christmas 2018.  We have an aging dog (now almost 17 years old Lab-Chow mix) who leads our other two dogs (both CPR adoptees) for key activities as going outside to relieve themselves or going on walks in inclimate weather.  I contacted CPR hoping to find a more confident poodle to step into the leader role in the future.

I’m very partial to black pets, which worked well since the surrendered poodles were largely black and brown.  Donna responded that we were again approved and she had a couple of dogs in mind, provided they passed cat testing,and meeting our 3 canine family members.  We quickly settled on Madison, a small (28 lb), 5-year-old standard poodle. She was affectionate but less exuberant than other poodles we met who had also passed the cat test.  Donna warned us that it was in part due to the fact that Madison was recovering from her recent spaying.

Here’ a summary of Madison over her first few months with us::

  • Madison is a bit (read a LOT) more exuberant and energetic than we expected. We are still working on getting her not to jump up on us, especially from behind, so no one falls.
  • Madison loves our large, fenced yard where she can indulge in zoomies.
  • She loves long walks and would probably do great in one of the 5K challenges if she had more athletic humans. These walks help deal her energy, with have the added benefit of keeping my weight down.  One of her nicknames is ‘Princess Go’ as she is always ready.
  • She quickly picked up basic training (in part she trained me as she knew some commands already but we had to work out the proper language).  However, it took her almost two weeks to get comfortable with stairs. It’s a mystery why she picks up some things quickly but others keep her baffled for a long time.
  • She passed the cat test by not chasing our cat, Boo, but that didn’t mean Madison doesn’t take pleasure trying to ‘torture’ Boo by barking at her when she has the cat cornered.  Madison crawls under the bed and barks on and on at Boo for as long as she can. Boo either slips away or strikes out when she has had enough.
  • Madison also discovered her favorite “prey” – chipmunks.  I now believe this may a poodle issue as Buddy, our miniature poodle, also hunts chipmunks that get into the house (with the help of a cat who brings her “toys” inside and gets tired of them).  Madison took up digging up chipmunk holes. She shows little interest in the rodents when they are sitting in the open; she loves theirunnels. Our yard is covered with holes and items to block further digging.  Daily bathing didn’t discourage Madison’s quest and, even with barriers in place, she tours the yard checking places rich with the critters. (See photos).
  • Madison is very friendly with older children and adults.  She was definitely unaccustomed to small children but is becoming a fan of getting their tentative pets when we meet toddlers in the park.
  • Madison seems to miss her days as a mother.  She is forever carrying around a stuffed dog toy and tries very hard to make friends with the golden retriever puppy that moved in across the street..
  • She has discovered the joys of peanut butter, Greek yogurt, canned dog food (small amounts for breakfast) and dog treats!  She has also honed her ability and skill for thievery and begging.
  • Madison thinks one of her jobs is to be my alarm clock.  About 6 weeks ago she started jumping on the bed and using her paws to wake me when she thought I should wake. I’m not sure if it’s the shortening days or if it is because she learned waking me at 6:00 am is NOT APPRECIATED but she finally let me sleep until 7:00 or 7:15 am (I usually slept until 7:30 to 7:45 since I retired).  She has also progressed to waking me with nose shove or lick rather than stepping all over me.
  • In the park, she is fascinated watching dogs play fetch or frisbee catch.  We have tried playing at home and she seems baffled (two of our dogs will play tug and fetch).

Madison has developed into a confident dog — patient when dealing with our senior dog, protective when we have strangers around, and now a leader for our other dogs for going out and on walks. She has become a full member of the family, making the transition from breeding dog to loving pet.  She may never understand playing fetch but her boundless energy and curiosity keep her (and us) from ever being bored.


Erlene Nolley (aka Mom to Madison)