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All of you doodle owners of both male and female doors: Do you feel there is a material difference between neutered/spayed males and females? I've heard generalizations about differences, but don't know if there is much to those generalizations. Let me know what you think. My parents are in the market for a new dog.

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Before Jackdoodle, I always had females. He was my first male, and he sold me. I'm on my second male now, Jasper, who is a purebred Poodle, and the differences between Jasper and my last Poodle (female) are night and day. 

I know there are many who will disagree, but if you talk to breeders of any breed of dog, they will almost always tell you that the males are more affectionate and more willing to please you. Among canine performance people, you will sometimes hear that the males are "softer". A tad slower to learn, maybe, but with a lot less "attitude". After all, there's a reason that the word for a female dog has such unpleasant connotations, lol.

Neutered males are no more likely to mark or to hump than females. Those are dominance behaviors, not sexual behaviors. 

We got a female this time around more for a smaller size than personality which is more of a consideration if you get a large breed.  DH also says he prefers giving belly rubs to female dogs than males (more belly real estate) which is a fair point :p

My mother always said the same thing as your DH, lol. 

I wrote this whole thing and then I realized that the simplest answer is that I think preference probably plays the biggest factor in this whole thing. I have a strong bias toward the girls, but that's because I always wanted daughters. I'm sure there are some gender differences, and I want the cuddliest, sweetest dog in the world, but not more than I want little girls with sweet names and pink collars. That and my one experience with a male dog who was a man's dog. I always played second fiddle to my dad and brother. I'm sure that contributed to my bias. Add to that my experience with rescue dogs who marked (not doodles. I had a lot of small dog potty issues.) At least when the girls had an accident it was on the floor and not the corner of my couch. 

My girls have always been sweet and cuddly and they don't have attitude. I don't know if they're as sweet as a boy would have been, but I really just wanted girls. I think, if there's no strong preference for any other reason, both sexes are equally great. Whichever dog you have is the right dog.

I had all female dogs until our Vern. Like Karen, he sold me. I am pretty sure Fudge and Vern will be our last dogs, but if I ever get another one, it would be a male. He didn't lift his leg to pee until he was around three and never humps. That said, I don't think you can go wrong if you pick a dog by personality....male or female.

And....LOL....I sometimes think the females are just smarter :) And smart dogs can be hard. I swear the only question I would ask for my next dog is...."Is he/she undersmart and does he/she have a strong prey drive?" If undersmart is yes and prey drive is a no, I would get that dog!

Really helpful replies so far..  Thanks!  Karen's response regarding humping being dominant, and not sexual behavior is interesting.  I have had 2 female doodles:  the first one was the more dominant personality (I think she might have been the alpha of the litter) and she humped while my current one doesn't.  Though both are (in Lucy's case- were) very affectionate and cuddly, and this is what I most want for my aging parents.  Sounds like you can get a snuggle buddy no matter what the gender!

I think being snuggly is more about individual personality than sex.  Luna was very loving but was not into snuggling and was very catlike in her demands for attention most of the time.  Riley on the other hand LOVES to snuggle.. which can be problematic sometimes because she doesn't realize  just how large she is lol.  DH was hoping for a snuggly doodle this time and got his wish, Riley loves spooning...something Luna was never keen on ;)

I hope you don't mind if I add some unsolicited advice. You say your aging parents. I don't know what that means to you. It could be anything from 40 - 83. But aging makes me think sedentary. I know that's not always the case, but anyway... These puppies are a full time job. That's how I ended up with Willow. The lady who purchased her didn't really understand what it meant to have a large, active, crazy puppy. She's adorable, but she has no off switch. I think sometimes people see how cute they are and think they're as easy as they are pretty. My Katie is a mini and she was nonstop until she was 2. The list of what she destroyed is as long as my arm. It's great, as long as you're prepared for that. Otherwise an older dog may be more appropriate. Once they're out of the puppy stage they are the best companions. But sometimes people bite off more than they can chew with a puppy.

I couldn't agree more.
What many people don't realize is that these are sporting breeds, and their exercise requirements are off the charts. Their coats are also very high maintenance, which means time + money. They are often billed as "living teddy bears", but that is the most deceptive kind of marketing. These are athletic dogs, not couch potatoes.
And then there's training. Smart dogs need their brains directed toward doing good, not evil. They often have their own agenda, (thank you, Poodles) and if you don't keep them occupied and motivated, they will devise their own activities, none of which will be much fun for the humans. 

Ugh, Riley is so much more poodle than Luna was... smarter, more devious, makes little games for herself (like you said the games are usually no fun for us). She can get two 30 minute walks in the morning and still needs a bunch of fetch time after before settling down a bit.

She is still young and may settle down but definitely not a dog I would recommend as compatible with most seniors.

I agree with the suggestion of adopting an older dog.

Being involved with doodle rescue, it still surprises me how many people think that leash walks are enough exercise for these dogs. Some get upset about rescues having fence requirements, but they don;t realize that most of these dogs need to run, and I mean run, on a regular basis. My fenced yard wasn't big enough for JD to really get tired out; by the time he got to top speed, he'd have to throw on the brakes or he'd hit the fence. Talk about tearing up sod!!! 

Looking forward to summer because we don't have a fenced yard yet... but dh's parents do and we visit them weekly but they go south for the winter:p it will be nice to let Riley run free in an enclosed space.  They also don't have a garden (just grass) so there isn't much for her to get into there!

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