Poodle Firsts: First Time at Groomers

Huxtable, Toy Parti Poodle, at about 3 months

Huxtable came to me pretty well groomed... his hair had been blown out and his was an adorable ball of fluff. My family loved it so much that I decided to stay with it... atleast through the winter. 

When deciding on which groomers I would use I researched and calculated a few things-- distance, price, reviews (mainly from yelp). My sister goes to a specific groomer at the Petsmart near her house and she loves it. I figured I'd try a groomer down the street that I often passed by in the car and could easily walk to.

"Mom, why are you taking photos of me... I'm still mad at you for leaving me by myself!!" I know that's what he was thinking because his head was down, lol, but I had to take photos before his cotton fluffiness went away. 

All in they did a great job! The only cons to some boutique groomers is that you often can't see your pet being groomed through a glass window, there's no waiting area, and it can be overpriced. Luckily the one near me has a ongoing bathing-special that's only about $5-$10 more than Petsmart and really worth it. 

Huxtable was a little upset with me for about 30 minutes after leaving the groomers... basically he wasn't affectionate. Which had me concerned, but he eventually warmed up. He didn't like that mommy left him, and I'm sure all the blow drying and combing and cutting didn't help, but he made it through. I knew after that I would need to groom him at home more so that going to the groomers wouldn't be so traumatic.


Note: I will admit I took him to the groomers a wee bit too early, but really it depends on who you're talking to. Some people say wait until they have their rabies shot before taking a puppy to the groomers, basically the same wait you would do for taking them to the dog park... basically 4 months. I jumped the gun and did it a month early, but it was Christmas Eve and he was going to meet all the family the next day. So I asked the groomer to take special care of him and he did.  

History of the Parti Poodle

 History of the Parti Poodles

"The Poodle"

The "parti poodle" is  the original poodle. When describing, drawing, painting, and discussing poodles in the 1400s, 1500s, 1600s, 1700s, and 1800s the color was most often parti-colored. 

In fact, the first ever dog book for the United States of America has a parti-colored poodle for "The Poodle". So pre early to mid 1900s a parti colored poodle was what people automatically thought of when  they thought poodle. So is laymans terms-- what color do you think of when you say Labrador Retriever-- most likely yellowish/blonde color, right? Well, that's how the parti poodle was viewed.

It wasn't until the early 1900s did the horrendous act of killing (culling) parti poodles become very trendy. And during that time solid became the preferred color, and the popularity made its way into the United States where many ignorantly fell suit. (some of that ignorant mindset it still in play today with pridefully ignorant people)

During that time period there were a few notable kennels that continued to breed parti poodles even though many were working hard to eliminate the parti poodle from poodle history, one of which was named Vulcan Kennels of England. Many of the Vulcan Kennel partis were derived from poodles bred by Jane Lane of the famous Nunsoe Kennels. So though there were breeders culling partis, there were still admirable breeders that were dedicated to breeding superior original poodles. 

Truffle Hunting Poodle. 

There are photos of poodles in their original truffle hunting days, and books and photos note that the original truffle hunting poodle was also parti colored. (The poodle would sniff and find the truffle and the dachshund would dig it up).

What does "Parti" mean? Why are Parti Poodles called Parti Poodles?

parti-colored dog has a white based coat and distinct patches of color.

It is thought that "Parti" is just a shortened way to say Partially-colored, Partial-colored, or Partly-colored. So Parti Poodle, is a shortened way to say Partially-colored poodle. The term parti was not used initially when discussing poodles, but became popular at some point in the 1900s (likely in the mid 1900s). Initially today's parti poodle was simply called a poodle, the term is thought to have came about when dog shows and poodle breeding became more popular (and as solid colors came into popularity). 'Partially' translated in French is partiellement, which can also be shortened to Parti. 

Parti is also thought to comes from the French word partager which means, "divide" "split" which would in turn refer to the poodle's coat color being split up or "divided" into two different colors or being "of two colors". Partager was then shortened or conjugated into "Parti".

Parti literally does mean "party" in many languages (French, Spanish, English, Latin, Dutch, German), but while parti poodles are surely thought to be the "life of the poodle world" in many ways (i.e."life of the party" = a fun exciting color), it is not known to be the origin of the term as it refers to dogs.

Other names used to describe parti poodles in different countries: Parti-coloured, particoloured, harlekin, harlequin, bi-color, bicolour. ("harlequin poodles", in the countries that use the term, usually only refers to black and white or brown and white poodles).

First dog book published in the United States (1856). For the poodle, there is a parti poodle which was the most common color of a poodle during that time.

Parti Poodles in Art and History.

George Stubbs Paintings, The Poodle

Artist have been painting poodles for centuries and luckily the oldest paintings and drawings of poodles display the poodle being of two colors, usually white and black -or- white and brown.

One of the earliest paintings/depictions of a poodle is an oil painting painted on a plank of oak dated 1496. The painting is the Auckland Museum and shows the virgin mother and child with saints and a few poodle miniature parti poodles in the continental clip.

Rembrandt and his poodle. The poodle is mostly brown on the right and white on the left, with a white blaze on the head and white around the muzzle. 

One of the most famous earlier poodle paintings is a baroque style oil painting by Rembrandt dated 1631. The painting is a self portrait of Rembrandt with a brown and white poodle.

Two artist in particular that are known to have painted animals, including dogs were John Wootton and George Stubbs.   

John Wootton (1682-1764) was an English painter whose interest included battle scenes, sporting subjects, landscapes, and dogs. John Wootton was known as one of the pioneers in painting sporting subjects. His paintings were highly sought after by royalty. It is thought that George Stubbs went on to follow in the footsteps of John Wootton. To his honor, Wootton painted Duke Thomas Osborne's poodle (which was parti colored) in the early 17th century, in a painting entitled "A Poodle & A Monkey". Read more about him and see his painting, here.

Gimrack on Newmart Heath, with a Trainer, A Stable-Lad, and a Jockey

George Stubbs (born in 1724) was a famous painter, whose paintings are most major art galleries all around the world. Stubbs studied anatomy, in addition to being a painter and is credited with being one of the first British animal painter to depict animals as they really appeared. His anatomy studies greatly complimented the accuracy of his works, which added to his credibility as a realistic painter.  He is most famous for his horse paintings, and one of them "Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath, with a Trainer, a Stable-Lad, and a Jockey (1765)"  sold for $36 million in 2011.  Stubbs painted horses, dogs, and many exotic animals-- lions, giraffes, monkeys, rhinoceroses, and tigers. He was often commissioned to paint rich aristocrats as they went hunting with their packs of dogs, as well as many other real "scenes" of them and/or their animals. George Stubbs painted the poodle above, which is "parti colored", in one of the traditional poodle cuts.

Pre the 1900s when a non-"parti-colored" poodle was written about or painted, its color would usually precede "poodle" i.e they would call a painting "white poodle" opposed to just poodle.  

 1621. Poodle, water dog, in sporting clip. 

There are many photos of poodles throughout history, and it is quite notable that poodles are most often painted and drawn as having two colors. "Ancient Poodles", as some may call it, were often written about as "water spaniels" and "pudels" b/c they were "puddle dogs" meaning "water dogs". Though poodles are the premier show dogs in modern times, they were originally water and sporting dogs-- hence their famous cuts. The poofy ankles, wrist, and chest aren't just random designs, they assisted in poodles being able to swim more efficiently and effectively. (Poodles also have webbed feet, which is  a trait fo water dogs).

As alluded to above their name "poodle" is derived from the german word "pudel" (which translates to puddle). Many think they are French dogs, but poodles or  pudels are actually of German heritage. 

"Der Pudel"-- first dog on third row, parti colored. 1807.

"Sancho". This picture was painted for Princess Charlotte of Wales, she was an admire of Sancho the poodle who belonged to her friend Marquis of Worcester. 1778.

Parti poodles have been adorned and loved by royalty.

(see more poodles in art here)

Parti Poodles in Dog Books.

Many, if not most books on poodles and dogs in general were published in the 1900s-- during a time when there became a preference for solids, strictly because of their popularity. Therefore most books, which were usually written by those in the "show dog" world, would either not mention parti's or would mention them negatively as to influence the mainstream and confirm and implement their new standard. Those who wrote honestly and unbiased of the breed always mentioned the original two-colored coat of the poodle, as one book states, "Before the standards were fixed in England, France, Germany, and in the USA poodles of all sizes were to be found spotted and white, or white spotted with colors--parti-colored as such dogs are called." The original color of poodles in all countries-- England, France, Russia, Germany, and the USA were all "parti" colored. So that means even the original "french poodle" is a two-colored poodle, most likely black and white, then bred to be all white or all black. 

Sidenote: Though killing/culling parti poodles was widespread in England, the English were originally great admirers of the poodle in it's original coat coloring. (It isn't known who or which group of people began to cull/kill partis first while trying to breed solid poodles, English or French. Either way there are more known (documented) English kennels and breeders that continued to breed superior original poodles.)

The French Poodle, 1865. 

Parti Poodle Personality, Intelligence, Showmanship.

The long standing proven history of the parti poodle is likely what makes it the stand-out of the poodle family. Those who believe the color of a poodle affects it personality say that parti poodles are the smartest, most intellectual, and usually the healthiest of any other color poodle. (poodles in general are very smart)

Canine Horizons is an excellent example of the almost superior-like intelligence that parti poodles embody (her poodles are true actors, starring in several movies and doing a slew of tricks and stunts as young as 4 or 5 months). Parti poodles are natural born showman, and will usually show show-dog like qualities within their first year.

Fortunately today nearly all Kennel Clubs, except the AKC, allow parti-poodles to show in conformation. But it is of no big surprise that the USA's main club would be slower to accepting the truth and being fair with its rules (given its history with even equal human rights). Hopefully within the next couple years this "animal-racism" of sorts will not be around. The greatest ancestor of all poodles is the parti poodle, this is fact whether some want to admit it or not. The earliest renderings, found to date of a poodle type dog is a carving with no color, but all the earliest photos, paintings, and drawings done on paper clearly show that the poodle being of two colors. 1561, Toy Poodle, parti-colored. 

The UKC (United Kennel Club), founded in the 1800s, notably have parti poodles compete in both conformation and agility.

Parti Poodle Myths.

Parti colored poodles have certainly been mixed up in many lies. The internet is full of perpetuations of the lies, one of the most common ones is that parti poodles are common for "backyard breeders" and puppymills and have poor traits and are not bred to standard. This is a lie. Some may say backyard breeders and puppymills do it b/c its exotic, or b/c other breeders didn't want to, etc... lies lies lies.

Parti poodles are not advertised as often as other colors, yes they are there, but there are MANY more whites, blacks, reds, apricots, creams, etc. Why? Because backyard breeders and puppymillers are going to breed what they think can sell the easiest-- it's business 101. So therefore it is much more likely to find a very poorely bred white, black, silver, red, apricot, etc than a parti. (Red is one of the more popular, and therefore more expensive colors these days, so you will find many, if not  most, puppymillers and backyard breeders breeding reds and apricots because of their newer popularity and seemingly "new" entrance into the poodle world.)

There are poodles not bred to standard in every color... there are good breeders and bad breeders for every type of animal.

With all that said if you want a poodle, or any dog for that matter, that is of great health and quality, with a good pedigree then you have to do your research and go to a breeder of your own choosing. Every breed of dog and animal is at risk of being sloppily bred... as for poodles, poor breeding is more common in solids than partis because solids are still more common.

Common Myth: Just mixing two different color poodles will not give you parti (which is what some people will lead you to believe), you will most likely get pups born the solid color of the mom and dad (but of course you have to check the poodles history to know for sure what colors it will likely breed).

Photobucket Parti Poodle -vs-  Parti-factored Poodle.

There is a lot of confusion between what actually constitutes a parti poodle. A Parti poodle directly refers to the coloring of the coat or the coat pattern. A parti-factored poodle is a poodle that has the coveted "parti" gene and therefore the ability to produce parti poodles. Parti-factored poodles can be either solid or parti colored. In fact, being that the parti poodle is the oldest known coloring of a poodle all poodles "technically" have the ability to create a parti poodle-- since all poodles have an ancestor on some part of the family tree that was parti-colored.  For example, everyone in your family has brown eyes, but your great great great great grandmother had blue eyes. You will most likely have brown eyes, but there  is a possibility that you could have blue eyes-- this happens in humans all the time.

Standard Poodle in Coastal Landscape. 1806.

Why Do Some Dog Registries Not Allow Parti Poodles to be shown in Conformation?

This is perhaps the million dollar question and many have guessed and speculated.

The short answer: The original 1900s standards for the poodle breed was written by someone who owned and had a strong preference for solid colored poodles. Their preference was most likely because of the newer popularity and trendiness of a solid-colored poodle at the time.

The long answer: In early history both the Russian and the German standards for poodles included partis, while the new French standard at that particular time specified solid colors. (although the original French poodle was also parti colored)

In the 1930's the Poodle Club of America had to decide whether to go with the German or French standard at the time. (The poodle is a German dog, but the French made it popular/fashionable). The German / Old English / Original French type poodle had been dominate in the United States at the time, hence the first American Dog Book having a Parti colored poodle pictured for "The Poodle". The differences between the German and French standards at the time were also in the coats and clips. Ultimately the decision was made to go with the current (in that day and age) Anglo-French standard, and so there was a large rush of dogs imported from England who would have a better chance to compete under this new standard. The decision was strictly political and based upon the particular aesthetics of those in charge and in the majority at the time. If a vote of one or two were different on that particular day perhaps the world would be filled with more partis than solid.

So basically there is no good reason for not allowing a parti poodle to not be shown in conformation. It's sort of a biased archaic type of rule that still exists simply because it can (and some are too lazy to change it). This rule can be changed by any and all clubs at anytime, and is consistently being changed each year by old dog clubs and registries.

Parti poodles are consistently winning top honors in agility events all over the world. Once they are accepted by all clubs it is very likely that a parti poodle will win top honors in one of the major dog shows-- Crufts, Westminster, and/or World Dog Show.

Poodle Nights: Dogs in Apartments, New Home Anxiety

One of the main reasons I wanted a small dog is so that I could more easily manage him in an apartment. While I do love big dogs, I don't plan on having one until I'm living in the penthouse suite, lol :/ (Though the other dog owners in my building have big dogs.)

My little Huxie poo had a little separation anxiety his first few nights in his new forever home

Anywho on my second night with little Huxtable things went awry. In the middle of the night around 4am, my new poodle decided his crate wasn't suitable and that sleeping alone wasn't either.  So he started barking and whining, I did the same thing I did the night before: ignore... and he stopped. Then he started again, this time I figured I'd check to see if he needed to use the bathroom, and he didn't so I put him away and went back to sleep. Then he started yet again, getting louder and louder with each bark, and he was even shaking the cage! After what seemed like an hour (probably more like 6-7 minutes) he stopped. I swear between 4am and 5am is THE most quiet time of the day. That seems like the only hour where there is literally no noise coming from anywhere-- this all made it worse and I began to really worry about my neighbors. I mean, who wants to be the neighbor with the annoying barking dogs? No one does, especially when people are trying to sleep. Finally after the fourth time of his insane barking, I quickly went to get him when he stopped. I've read it's really important not to give them attention when they're barking, otherwise they'll think that's an acceptable way to get your attention.

I'll definitely say he worked my nerves, I began rethinking if I was really ready to be a "mom". I can be patient, but this barking at 4am was not something I planned on getting used to. At that moment I really thought I was in over my head, I even started to look for non-harmful devices to keep your dog from barking... the collars seemed a bit extreme, but I was on the verge of ordering a K-Ii Pet-Agree Dog Training Aid Ultrasonic. Thankfully that was the last time he barked like that at night, and the only other time he's ever barked continuously (and annoyingly) was when I left him in a tub to try and go potty (on his pee pad) when we were at my sister's house.

The first few days and nights of having a new puppy can be tough, but I realized you just have to hang in there and things will go smooth sooner than you realize.

My New Poodle: Baby's First Day Home

little baby Huxtable on his first day home

I was in pretty high anticipation when making the final journey to pick him up, so my mom came with. He rode back in my lap, quiet as a mouse.

When I got to my place, one of my sisters had just gotten there and another was on her way.... we were just so excited! There's no nieces and nephews yet, so he's sorta the closet thing.


I had already ordered a bulk of things online, but they hadn't arrived yet. My vintage dog carrier (soon to be his 'dog house' was on its way, so I only had what he was sent with  (plastic dog kennel, sample food, papers) and handful of things I just so happened to buy a bit earlier (toy, puppy/small flea collar, dog brush). So my sister and mom make a quick run to the pet supermarket down the street and to publix and picked up a small collar and leash, small package of wee wee pads, and I think that's it. I just needed the basics to get by until my huge package of dog supplies arrived. I should have ordered everything earlier so I could have been 100% ready for my dog's first day home.

He really does have all the markings of a perfect parti poodle. Chocolate and white in all the right places, amber eyes, liver colored nose and lips, just adorable.

He explored just a little bit, but was mainly very shy on his first day-- typical puppy behavior. Our first night was okay, he barked  for a little bit when is his cage, but after ignoring him for about 3-4 minutes he stopped. His original owner warned me that he might have a little bit of separation anxiety from his sister, who he slept with every night. But all in all a good first day :)

Why I Chose My New Poodle Puppy

Huxtable, Toy Parti Poodle

This is a simple blog dedicated to my new little baby Huxtable Bastian Bixby Samoht. (That's right you read it correctly, lol.) I've been wanting to add a little furry kid into my life for awhile, and a couple months ago I felt the time was right and so my "find a puppy" journey began. (btw: He is my first live-in pet, we had many different dogs all while growing up but they were outside dogs for outside play and protection, not inside dogs). 

My sister has a yorkie-poo (yorkshire terrier and poodle mix) and we had been discussing what the right type of dog would be for me for awhile.  There were a few things I knew I HAD to have-- he needed to be small (I live in an apartment), he needed to not shed, and he needed to be smart... I can't deal with slow/stubborn dog at this point in my life, lol ;). Well, she used an iphone app to narrow down the choices, and there were a nice handful to choose from. But it took little time for me to realize that a poodle was exactly what I wanted-- they come in a great variety of colors and sizes, they don't shed, and they're one of the smartest dogs in the world... always listed as 1, 2, or 3 depending on whose list you're looking at. Oh, and of course I wanted a male dog. Why? Well because most of my human best friends are male, so why not have my pet best friend be a little guy too. Plus I had also read that boy dogs can actually be more loyal than girl dogs, although many people think the opposite (thanks to television shows like Lassie).

Once I picked the breed, I then needed to pick a color. Well, a friend of mines adopted a dog for his mom, a little brown Chihuahua. Super cute and a very pretty color... it wasn't a normal brown, so I had to google it and realized that its color was "red". And thinking back on it, years ago I had fallen in love with red pitbulls as well. Now some people have the dusty rose light colored red that are nearly apricot, but I wanted a dark and rich in color red-- the color of a brown teddy bear or the color of a red headed person's hair. So I decided to set my sights on the perfect mahogany red toy poodle. Besides red, chocolate was also a color I was interested in, but moreso for a girl, I was a bit more partial to red for a boy. Essentially red, chocolate/brown, and dark apricot were all colors I initially saw fitting my lifestyle and apartment decor very well, lol... sounds funny, but I'm a creative/design/fashion type and I can't help but to think like that :-)

Of course my searches started on pet adoption and humane websites, but they seemed to be filled with mostly white poodles, and the occasional silver, black, or apricot. And the bulk of them, well, all of them, were adults. So then I looked on websites and classifieds, and as I scrolled every once in a while I would see these poodles called "parti poodles". They intrigued me at first sight. So of course I googled it. I read up on them just a bit and learned that were not being recognized by certain registries, and that were discriminated against in the poodle world. So that made me think twice, I thought to myself, "I want to have an official poodle, not something that isn't recognized."

dark red toy poodle; (http://www.flickr.com/photos/juanitamarchesani)

I soon went to go visit my first prospective poodle. He was a light red/apricot with white boots and a little white on his fur. I initially wanted a solid, but my sister and I had discussed dogs having 'character' and their own unique look so I became much more open to dogs that weren't just solid. A solid color dog can be sort of boring in ways... Although I didn't get that dog, seeing him got me thinking about the partis again. My sister made mention of the President's dog Bo, then I thought about TV dogs and realized that most of them are usually more than one color. So at that point I not only had partis on the brain, but tuxedos poodles, and phantom colored poodles. 

Still being uncertain about getting a parti colored poodle, I did more research. And the deeper I looked the more attached I became to their story and to their originality. I found old photos of parti poodles from the 1700s and 1800s. And in that time period a poodle was known to be both black and white or brown and white... it was the standard and norm, a "parti" poodle was what people thought of when they thought poodle. In the first official  United Stated of America dog book "The Poodle" page displayed a drawing of a parti poodle near the water. And the more I read the more intrigued I became. I like classic things, I like to have the original, I like vintage and authentic in most areas of my life and it seemed like the truth of the matter was that the parti poodle was the original poodle.

1700s Poodle Painting

Nevertheless, I had semi fallen in love with a solid tiny toy dark red poodle I saw online, he was so cute. And I almost sent the deposit, but my sister felt like he could have been a puppy mill dog. Not only is red a popular poodle color that entices many puppy mill breeders, but she had checked out the breeder and  felt like they had too many types of dogs. And the photos they posted and sent were kind of blurry. Not to mention they lived in Nebraska-- one of the most notorious puppy mill states. Then when I google mapped their location it was literally in nowhere land Nebraska (with tons of space for puppy milling). There was also no website. And not that a website is a must, but when you're willing to ship puppies I think it would be best to have a website so that we can see the living condition of the dogs. OR atleast have several Very clear photos, which they didn't.... this all left me in limbo. 

I then found an adorable chocolate and white parti poodle that looked to have an amazing genetic background. He was fully AKC registered and the mom and dad were house pets of the owners. His complete AKC lineage was on the website and dated back many many generations. His dad's side came from nothing but top tier poodle breeders. Honestly his initial picture was not the best, but the few sent afterwards were quite cute (despite his little tears). So now I was officially torn: red? parti? red? parti? I was banging my head trying to decide.... then I read up more on parti poodles.

 I learned that not only were they the original poodle, but that for some reason around the early 1900s people decided that they didn't want the poodle to have two colors, but one-- and they began to breed for color. So when their partis created solids they kept those to continue to breed, but then they would kill the partis, they were literally killing every parti poodle that was born. They killed them because they did not want to risk them being mated again. Essentially people were exterminating them, vigorously working to only have solid colored poodles.  And that is the story that made it official for me, I was going to own a parti colored poodle.

This is the parti poodle photo that heavily persuaded me to choose chocolate and white parti over solid red. Isn't this poodle so amazingly attractive, well groomed, and classic?! (http://dominopoodles.com/)

sidebar: The fact that parti colored poodles have clearly been around for as long as the poodle has, there are pictures and paintings of them all throughout history, but somehow dog registries don't let them participate in all events/conformations/etc is crazy! They'll let a yellow/apricot, silver, grey, blue, red participate-- all colors that are obviously not original colors, but they won't let a parti (atleast the black and white -and- brown and white)?! It's discrimination at it's greatest, and to me it's just so interesting how mankind's discrimination and hate shows up everywhere...  lol, honestly it's kind of hilarious because it's sort of like animal racism, lol.. sounds weird, but that's actually what it is. Parti poodles are the original poodles, or at the very least they have been around long before any color outside of white, black, and chocolate, but yet they can't participate in conformation <--- so bogus. 

But enough of that topic, the point is their story is what sold me, and I knew my little canine boy would have a pampered great stylish life so I figured why not get a parti to show the haters and naysayers how great and gorgeous they are. So all of that coupled with the fact that a brown and white dog just looks so classic and preppy made me 100% on getting him. I could more clearly see him lounging around my place than any other color, there's just such a richness about a chocolate and white poodle. And the bonuses were that partis were known to be a little smarter, more even-tempered, and sociable than other colors. 

So finally on December 19th I picked up my little chocolate and white parti toy poodle. He was perfect in every way, and SO FLUFFY! lol.

This blog is simply about him-- documenting his growth, happenings, and life. Everyone who meets little baby Huxtable LOVES him and literally asks to babysit, hold him, send photos, they all want to know if/when I plan to breed so they can have their own (I have no plans to btw), and because of ALL of that, lol, I decided to make a blog that my friends and family can go to and check on their canine nephew/grandson/godson/etc. And of course why not share my experiences and photos with other poodle and dog lovers.  
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