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So yesterday I had Flora @ the groomers, and when I went to pick her up, there was another guy picking up his dog from daycare who coincidentally came from the same breeder as Flora. He remarked on how Flora's temperament was very different from his 3 year old (yes, yes, Flora is very hyper around new people and cries incessantly, groans loudly, and shakes her booty), so I was curious what he meant.

HIS dog came out, and not only did she look older than her 3 years, but she was also extremely ... I don't know, standoffish? Very mellow. He said that he got his dog at 2 years after she didn't work out as a show dog with our breeder, so that kind of explained why she was so much more calm, but geez, she was really mellow! His other dog, a lab, acted a lot more like a normal dog, expressing interest in me and Flora and wagging his tail, whereas his golden had her tail tucked between her legs and didn't really pay any mind to me or Flora. I've met service dogs that had more life in them than this one! He commented on how she was much more of a "dog's dog" than a "people dog" and that people have to work at getting her to approach them, which got me to thinking: do dogs raised with a breeder, around a lot of other dogs, sort of lose their "people skills"? And also, is that what normal show dogs are like, or was this one different? I remember the other dogs @ the breeder and while they too always approached with their tails tucked between their legs, they were at least a little bit more interested in me and my family, so I wonder if this dog was just a really shy dog.

It was really interesting seeing the contrast between a breeder's dog and a pet dog, and it also made me realize I need to invest in more obedience classes. ;) It's also bizarre how much different they looked even though they only had 2 years between them! I hope Flora doesn't age that quickly.
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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Not many show Goldens that Ive met have been like that...The ones Ive seen are more like - "LOOK AT ME-IM GORGEOUS!!!"
 

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Your story is very interesting to me. I adopted my Golden at just over 2 years of age from her breeder after having been shown to her Championship and having a litter of puppies. My brother has a male Golden from the same breeder which he adopted at 8.5 weeks of age. My dog does exhibit some of the aloofness you mentioned, however, not with people. She adores meeting people and especially children but one thing I notice is when we are in public (i.e., if I take her to the pet food store with me) she is very aloof, calm and almost has an air of “come on this is just boring me to death”. People come to meet her, pet her, etc. but she has a very restrained reaction. Everyone comments on how calm she is when I have her out. I wonder if it’s her training for showing that gives her this “air” in public places. She is much more exuberant and has tried to jump up when meeting people on a walk in the neighbourhood, etc. The groomers love her as she is easy work as she just lets them do whatever they want without any struggle. She is a very well behaved and calm dog in and outside the house but marches to her own drum. She will come when she feels like it when I call, etc…..unless there’s a treat involved…. I have never, ever seen her feel bad or sorry when I’ve had to scold her for something.
My brother’s Golden on the other hand is much more sensitive and you dare not raise your voice to him. He is extremely obedient and VERY excitable when meeting new people with frantic barking, yipping and bum wagging. He is much more exuberant when you take him out in public. He also hates to be groomed! He too had obedience training.
 

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Yeah, I don't think Creed has ever had a mellow moment in his life! He loves people and is always positive that if there are people in the same vicinity he is, they are there to see him :)

At the National one yer, I could have wished for more stand offishness in Creed :) Kind people just commented that "My he is a VERY strong dog, isn't he?" as he hauled me over to them-and I have years of experience with strong Goldens!

If she didn't work out as a show dog, her "stand off-ish" temperament might have been one reason. I do see dogs that are more "dog" dogs than people dogs, when they have spent more time in the kennel or with other dogs, than they have with people, or with lots of different people, anyway.

Just being part of a kennel situation and a lot of other dogs doesn't make them stand-offish, but being around other dogs more than people, or being around just a few people or few social situations can. It becomes something that is out of their comfort zone.
 

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I don't think that this is "typical" of show dogs at all.
As for show dogs being more "aloof" around other dogs, this is generally a matter of training. When on a lead, and in either a ring or an enclosed space with other dogs, they need to be under control and focused on their handlers. Now, once loose and in a different environment, they play and roughhouse and act like any other pet. (Which they are, BTW...)
 

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Actually, part of what makes an outstanding show dog is an exuberant, look at me, outgoing personality, so the simple answer, as PG said, is 'No, this is not a typical show dog temperament, to be stand offish."
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the replies so far! It's very interesting. I don't know what this dog is like when she's in an environment that she's more comfortable in, but at the groomer's/day care she was definitely not displaying a "look at me!" personality, which is probably why she didn't work out as a show dog. But boy, I sure wish Flora had a little bit of this dog's restraint. She's so exuberant with her greetings!

And I was totally not implying that breeder's dogs are not pets... I know for the most part they are and are loved tremendously! I was just curious is all.
 

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Well, KD, that man's dog didn't work out as a show dog--perhaps temperament was part of the equation. I'm here in South Florida, not by him to observe his dog to know first hand, so it's really not for me to say. I have read that a dog can have excellent structure, but if they don't have the personality to carry themselves well, and show off that structure, that dog could very well have a difficult chance in the show ring. Conformation is not only about the breed standard's physical attributes. It also has to do with temperament as well.

Have you ever been to a dog show, KD? Ever time I go, I have such a smile. You can see the dogs that enjoy it--because they enjoy the atmosphere, being around people and other dogs. Dogs that don't enjoy it either don't finish, like the dog you met (perhaps that was the case? we don't know) or if they do, they aren't shown for very long (if their owners, breeders and handlers are kind).
 

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chew chew chew
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I think it would depend on the breeder and the situation. I know a lot of breeders who show here and their dogs are all very outgoing and socialized with people, dogs and other situations. However, tthere are breeders who have more of a kennel situation and the dogs aren't pets, they are kennel dogs and often not handled much other than to get them ready for a show - those dogs are more aloof and fearful, having not been socialized as puppies/young dogs. The sad part is those types of breeders tend to make a profit on selling pups and are the ones (usually) who put the ads in magazines and sell a lot of puppies, compaired to the hobby breeder who has the dogs sleeping on their bed with them.

Lana
 

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I think it would depend on the breeder and the situation. I know a lot of breeders who show here and their dogs are all very outgoing and socialized with people, dogs and other situations. However, tthere are breeders who have more of a kennel situation and the dogs aren't pets, they are kennel dogs and often not handled much other than to get them ready for a show - those dogs are more aloof and fearful, having not been socialized as puppies/young dogs. The sad part is those types of breeders tend to make a profit on selling pups and are the ones (usually) who put the ads in magazines and sell a lot of puppies, compaired to the hobby breeder who has the dogs sleeping on their bed with them.

Lana
True, true. I don't think that's really the case with Flora's breeder - the dogs are kept in an inside/outside run, but he said that the dogs were rotated into the house one by one, so I'm sure they get people socialization. And when we met his dogs almost all of them WERE very happy to see us, so I think this particular dog might be an oddity. But I'm sure there are definitely breeders that don't bother with socializing their dogs much, which could contribute to the aloofness.
 

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But boy, I sure wish Flora had a little bit of this dog's restraint. She's so exuberant with her greetings!
LOL yesterday I had a friend over and she sat on the couch and Teddy literally climbed on her head and that was after he jumped/sniffed/greeted her at the door and wouldn't let her move for like 15 minutes because he was acting so crazy. Luckily my friend was understanding and found the whole thing amusing. It's definitely something that needs to be worked on with Teddy though.
 

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My dogs are trained. They are friendly and happy, but polite, in social situations with other dogs and people. They are happy in the kennel, and happy in the house. They understand the rules in either place, and when in new situations (although because they are busy and go lots of places, nothing seems really "foreign" to them...) they count on me to let them know what is expected. They turn on in the ring when asked, and are rugs when in their crates outside the ring. When out in the dog yard with all the other dogs, they are crazy, silly maniacs who play hard, but always play well with others. When in the house, they are well behaved. They greet people coming in with a toy in their mouth, will not jump on them, nor dash out an open door.
You get out of your dogs what you put into them.
 

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My dogs are trained. They are friendly and happy, but polite, in social situations with other dogs and people. They are happy in the kennel, and happy in the house. They understand the rules in either place, and when in new situations (although because they are busy and go lots of places, nothing seems really "foreign" to them...) they count on me to let them know what is expected. They turn on in the ring when asked, and are rugs when in their crates outside the ring. When out in the dog yard with all the other dogs, they are crazy, silly maniacs who play hard, but always play well with others. When in the house, they are well behaved. They greet people coming in with a toy in their mouth, will not jump on them, nor dash out an open door.
You get out of your dogs what you put into them.
I've got the toy-in-mouth thing down, but I would like to get Flora to quit it with all the darn jumping, especially with a bum hip. She used to be so good about it, but once she hit about 11 months it all came back with a vengeance. More training is in order, I suppose.
 

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Do remember that there is a huge difference between a 3 year old's behavior and a 1 year old (still a pup) from any breeder. And consistent training will definitely pay off. I'm sure that Flora (who is absolutely beautiful) will improve as she matures. We have the unique situation of having one of your breeder's dogs that we got as an adult. She is the most well trained and stable girl we could ask for. She had 2 litters for them and then retired at age 4.5 to our home to be loved forever. Annie is very outgoing, loves every human and has never jumped up, not once, on anyone. She was older when we got her and obviously had been trained well. We have heard her bark 6 times total in 3 years.

Every dog is different. Just like every human was different. In the same human family, there can be outgoing children and shy kids (we have both). We also have 2 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. One of them is very outgoing with everyone. The other one is more timid at first, then warms up to most folks. They were both from outstanding breeders and have had a wonderful life here. No trauma, lots of love. They are just different. At the vet, Rosey will act more timid and I'm sure they have no idea that at home she is extremely funny and playful and not worried about things. That's just her (and we love her dearly).

There is also no way to know, once a dog/puppy leaves any breeders' home what they will encounter. This dog was at daycare and could have had even one experience that scared it and changed how it behaves. We had a cocker spaniel that was attacked by a black lab at an obedience class and she was terrified of anything black the rest of her life. It was one time. There is no way to know if people run too much with their dogs or let them jump off of things too early/too much, or play high-flying games like frisbee to say that hip problems are always a genetic condition. Sometimes they are, but not always.

It's nice to know that there are so many types of dogs to love and lots of people to love them. Every dog we have had has been unique and full of their own little quirks. It sure makes life interesting!:)

(I just realized that your question was for breeders/showers and although I am not one, nor do I play one on TV, our dog was a breeder and in dog shows, so hopefully I'm qualified:)
 

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People frequently mention that Selli is SO calm, now and when she was younger. A lot of it is training (she has been in classes almost constantly since she was 10 weeks old), but more of it is just lots of exposure to different things, people and places.

It could be that this dog is similar, training and exposure to new experience may make dogs seem very quiet and calm, when like Selli, when the get out to have fun they are wild.
 
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