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What is the Breed of the Month? 

Each month Westgate features information on a different breed of dog or cat. These articles provide historical information, as well as information on potential health concerns and preventative care measures that may benefit these different breeds.  Click on the picutre below to learn more about your favorite breed!

breed of month vJan January: Shih Tzu February: The exotic shorthair March: Great Dane April: English Bulldog May: Ragdoll June: Golden Retriever November: Scottish Fold July: King Charles August: Maine Coon September: Labrador October: Pug December: Standard Poodle

December- The Standard Poodle

History of the Breed:  poodle free


The Standard Poodle originated in Germany and was first used a water retrieving dog.  The fancy haircut that we typically associate with poodles was actually meant to be functional, not stylish.  The fur is cut short to facilitate movement through the water, but left longer over joints and areas of the body that are meant to stay warmer.  


Poodles tend to be good natured and intelligent dogs.  They especially make great pets for owners that are interested in obedience and agility traiing.  


Health Concerns:


Addison's Disease


Hip Dysplasia

Ear Infections



Preventative Care Recommendations:


Because of this breed's predisposition to bloat, it is recommended that Standard Poodles have a gastropexy procedure done at the time of their spay or neuter procedure.  A gastropexy is a procedure in which the stomach is tacked to the abdominal wall.  The benefit of doing this procedure is that if your poodle does happen to have gas retention (bloat) of the stomach, the stomach will not be able to twist around into a life threatening gastro-dilatation and volvus (GDV).  Click Here to read more about preventative gastropexy. 


Poodles tend to have a lot of hair in their ears.  There are mixed recommendations from dermatologists about whether or not to pluck the hair out of the ears.  Some dermatologists say that plucking the hair will cause inflammation in the ear canal and could predispose a dog to an ear infection.  Other dermatologists recommend plucking the hair out of the ears so that it doesn't trap moisture and debris.   The decision about whether or not to remove the ear hair should be made based on your dog's ear health. 

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4345 France Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55410
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