Poodles were originally Retrievers and not French at all- they were bred by German hunters to retrieve fallen birds (the name comes from “pudeln”, which means “to splash in water”). There are a number of similar curly coated water retrievers which have been developed into separate breeds throughout Europe and we used one of these, Roman, a Lagotto Romagolo, in our “Moyen ” Poodle breeding program.
My dog Rufous, a red Toy cross Mini, has contributed heavily to the breeding program and there is a bit of Rufous in all my Oodles. Rufous is a classic example of the people-oriented poodle. He decided a week after arriving at the kennels that I was his human, and began following me everywhere – occasionally nudging my leg to remind me that he was there, but otherwise just tagging along. I haven’t had my own dog for many years (just family dogs, who are equally happy with anyone), but Rufus’ persistence was endearing – so he now lives at the house with Bruce and me.
Rufous represents everything I love about poodles – he is quick to learn, confident (unless the cow that he’s chasing turns around on him – he does see himself as a farm dog), not yappy or snappy, and he fits nicely under our coffee table.
Our main boys currently are Max and Rex who are sons of Rufous and Iris – the daughter of our amazingly calm, sensible, now-retired Louie. who is Roman’s son and so half Lagotto Romagnola. So Max and Rex are 1/8th Lagotto. So is our other boy, George, who is the son of Iris’ sister Bridget’s and Neville our retired Moyen.
The boys background is all very confusing, but for all intents and purposes Rex, Max and George are just really nice, sensible, healthy, genetically diverse, medium-sized poodles (about 14 kilos each) with a dash of Lagotto.
We have two young males coming on – Duncan (son of Rufous and Molly – another of Iris’ sisters) and Angus (Iris and Rufous’s grandson). We will have photos of these boys when they are old enough to start breeding.
We use our female poodles to breed our Cavoodles. Our current girls are Duncan’s sisters Sadie, Jet and Ruby and Angus’s sister Milly (who will reach breeding age towards the end of 2021)