Anyone that has been following my website knows that I love my Labradoodle. Sadly in August 2019 we lost both of our dogs BOO the Cockapoo and FINN the Labradoodle. We were absolutely devastated to lose both our boys at the same time.
I don’t think that you are ever ready to let your dogs go, but making that decision to let them go together was heartbreaking. It has been a very tough 6 months for us to say the least.
Fellow dog lovers and friends all said that we would know when we were ready to get a new puppy. The months passed and we just weren’t quite ready yet. Together we took our time and watched for signs along the way.
Well that day finally did come. Last week we took the plunge and decided to get a new puppy. I know that it has only been a few days, but I can already say I love him! He was literally love at first site for me.
We thought long and hard about whether this was the right time for us to get a new puppy. I have just had ankle surgery and am laid up for a while. The upside of this, is that I am going to be home for a few months, so that may help with getting through the dreaded puppy stage and potty training.
Then came the decision of trying to decide what breed of dog we wanted to get this time around. Both of our last dogs were a Poodle mix of some sort. The one thing that we did know was that we wanted a big dog again, rather than a small one. We just loved the feeling that you get by having a big dog around. They provide us with a comfort level that is different than with a small dog. Don’t get me wrong, I love them all. I just the feeling of hugging a big dog.
Our boy FINN was about 55 lbs and was an amazing Labradoodle. We absolutely fell in love with having a big dog and loved the Doodle characteristics. For that reason we wanted to make sure that we looked at all the doodle breeds that would give us all of what we were looking for. We really liked the Sheepadoodles, the Goldendoodles and of course the Labradoodles.
Now with most Doodle breeds, the puppy costs can really vary. You can pay a ton, or you can get one very reasonably priced. Just shopping around and making sure you do your homework so you know what you are getting. More money doesn’t always mean a better dog.
I really wanted a Sheepadoodle, but they are a bit harder to find out here in Western Canada. Then of course there was the cost which could get close to $2000 or more. Unfortunately, that wasn’t something that we were willing to pay for a puppy right now. So because of the cost, we ruled out the Sheepadoodle as an option. That left us deciding between a Labradoodle or a Goldendoodle as our breed of choice.
We didn’t have a preference between the two breeds, it was just more about getting a Doodle that was completely different from FINN. I am not sure if it was just that we didn’t want to be constantly comparing the new puppy to FINN or if it was that we felt that we were cheating on him. I know that sounds weird, but it was important to us to honour our boys memories and not feel like we were replacing them in any way.
Now that we had narrowed it down to the 2 breeds, we just decided to look and see what kind of choices were available.
After a few weeks of looking, I started following a litter of puppies online from Chestermere which is by Calgary, AB Canada. There was 8 puppies in the litter who were all black and white. They were beautiful Labradoodles.
By the time I found the ad, there were only 4 puppies left, 2 males and 2 females. I have to say though, 1 of the males and 1 of the females instantly caught my eye. The phantom type markings on their faces were so completely unique. Almost like when you see something for the first time and aren’t sure if it is a good different or bad, but yet you are captured by it.
Well whatever that first impression was, I was totally drawn to the 2 of them. I knew all along that we were going to be getting a male puppy, so I focused more on the dog marked Male #1.
We loved our last 2 boys and choosing another male, was just because we were more familiar with having a male puppy than a female one.
There were 2 pictures of him posted with the ad and he was somewhere between 4-6 weeks old. He was black in body color with a white patch on his chest and under his chin. Around his eyes and nose he had white feathered into the black almost making it look like he was wearing a mask.
I have to say though it really was his eyes that I was the most fascinated with. He just seemed like he had those sad and very sweet eyes that just melt your heart. I showed him to my partner and she right away thought he was adorable. She had that same reaction that I had of intrigue and curiosity. Our problem with finding him when we did was that we had sort of agreed that we weren’t quite ready to get a new puppy yet.
I of course was “ONLY LOOKING”! LOL! I decided well it can’t hurt to contact the owners and find out more info about Male #1. We wanted to know a bit about his personality and what kind of puppy he was. I also asked if they had any videos or additional pics of him that we could see.
When he described him, he said that he was super smart, inquisitive but very docile. He said that he loves to flip over on his back and then just lay there for days. He also really loves to play with his mom and sister.
The pictures he said do not do him justice, and that he was even more cute in real life, a real character. Then he sent a cute video of him and another picture. Honestly it was all so adorable. I think I was hooked from that point on.
His mom Lucy is a pure chocolate Labrador and his dad (name unknown) was a cream Standard Poodle. He provided a pic of his mom and she was a real looker. You could tell that she was a beautiful dog.
Well armed with that amazing description and the video of this puppy that I already was obsessed with, we decided to just wait a bit. TICK TOCK, TICK TOCK!
Meanwhile, 10 days go by and all of a sudden the seller texted me and said that all the other puppies were gone and he was the only one left. Then asked if we were still interested in him. Instantly we kind of looked at each other and said “Well what do you want to do”? We just couldn’t let him go to someone else, deep down I think we knew he was our dog. So we said we would take him.
Once we made the decision last Sunday that we were going to take him, we began figuring out the logistics of going to pick him up. I live in Saskatoon, SK, which is 580 KM (360 miles) from Chestermere where he was. So that meant a really long day of driving there and back.
We made arrangements to drive and pick him up on the Tuesday. That meant getting on the road very early. Unfortunately due to my foot in a cast, I wasn’t able to make the long journey to get him. My partner Roxanne had to take that long trip alone to pick up our new puppy.
I was at home of course all day waiting for her to get there so she could call me to tell me all about him. Remember we didn’t get to see him in person before we got him. All we had seen of him was from the few pics and short video.
When she got there to pick him up, apparently he trotted right up to her outside with no leash, completely calm. Basically introducing himself. She said it was about the cutest thing.
As she is talking to the seller’s father who had been looking after the pups, he proceeded to get a big teary eyed that the puppy was actually leaving. The lady on site mentioned how much they really loved him and that they were going to miss him, but they were excited for him to go to a good home. At the same time, they of course have watched him grow up for 10 weeks and had gotten attached to him.
It must be so hard to get attached to these puppies and then have to let them all go after caring for them from birth. She said she had been calling him “Zeke” the passed few days just so she could call him something.
He was loaded into the car in a crate and off on the road they went. I got the call once they hit the road and already all Roxanne could say was how he was amazing, sweet and his pictures really didn’t do him justice. I couldn’t wait to meet him. The journey was a long trip, but apparently he was just the best boy on the trip. Calm and relaxed while in his crate.
Almost 6 hours later, they arrived home. She pulled him out of the crate, and waddling up came this cute black puppy. Right away I knew I was in love.
We both had 3 boys names picked out that we agreed on. The key was just meeting the puppy and seeing which name fit him best. Right away we knew he was going to be called “FERGUS”. The name just suited him right from the first moment we both saw him together.
FERGUS had arrived at his forever home and instantly warmed our hearts.
Fergus so far
I could tell after only a few hours with him, that he was smart, calm and very sweet. He followed right behind us whenever we would go somewhere. Then once you got to your destination, he would just simply lay down at your feet. No matter what was going on around him, he would settle down quickly. We were impressed right away.
The second I picked him up, I did get a little surprise with what a solid boy he was. Then I grabbed his paw and wow it was like he was wearing mitts. His feet are so big. I guess that means that he is going to be a bigger boy than expected, but who knows just how big he will be, that will be the fun part.
The first night in his crate and in a new home, he did so well. We were expecting a night of whining and crying. More times than not a puppy cries the first night away from his mom and siblings. FERGUS whined for no more than a minute or two and off to sleep he went. He was such a trooper. I wondered if he was so good because he was the last of the litter to be taken, so he had been already used to being without his siblings for a while. Whatever the reason is, we were way more rested than expected. LOL!
The next day we decided to take him to the pet store to pick up some puppy food for him. We had never had him on a leash, so we weren’t sure how that was all going to go. Again, he completely surprised us with how well-behaved he was. As we were walking around with him, anytime someone would come up to him, he would just sit at his feet and let them pet him. It was just so surprising that he already seem to be acting like a big dog.
My heart is full
We are coming up on almost 1 week with him and we are constantly being surprised with what a sweet boy he is. Getting up every day, he has given us a real purpose again. Already it is hard to imagine our life without him.
I look forward to training him and getting to really know him. He seems to be adapting to his new life quite well, and really finding his way. I can’t wait to watch him grow up and change everyday.
It has been 11 years since we have had a puppy and you do forget just how much work they really are. The potty training, the moments where he is literally wired for sound and of course the teething. He is reaching and grabbing everything in sight, just trying to get some relief for his poor gums.
Keys to success for him, will of course be how we handle it all and respond to it. It is an exercise in patience and making sure we are both on the same page with discipline.
Well I will keep you updated on our new beautiful boy FERGUS and our wonderful journey together.
I also want to thank Lucy’s family for being so amazing to deal with and for raising him to be the most amazing boy.