These puppies do not even look like puppies anymore. I think they were the size of aussiedoodle puppies for maybe ten minutes and then BAM! They sprouted these long legs! If I sound like this has taken be by surprise, that is true. Somehow I thought we were getting two midsize Aussiedoodles. They are six months old this week, and are not even done growing. They weigh around 40 pounds each. It is not their increasing weight that is unexpected, it is their tall gangly limbs. Summer’s front leg, from floor to shoulder, is 23 inches when standing. Koda is about the same height, and also has long front legs that can wrap around you like a human hug. I ask myself, “How did these puppies get so big?”
When we were considering the different dog breeds last winter, we talked about mid-sized dogs. Our Australian Shepherd, Dot, was a miniature aussie. She was no more than 45 pounds, carried her thickness in the body and had shorter legs. I did my research about the mix breeding of Australian Shepherds and poodles. The possible combinations were: mini aussie with toy poodle (too small), aussie with toy poodle (still too small), aussie with miniature poodle (might be good, but could be smaller than we want), and then aussie with standard poodle (this is what we thought we wanted).
A good friend of ours in California has an aussiedoodle named Scout. When we met Scout, we fell hard for her sweet human like eyes, her soft coat, and how smart and kind she was. She was just the right size. So we set out to find two “Scouts.” About a month ago, when Koda and Summer grew larger than we remembered Scout being, we both exclaimed, “What happened to Scout? These are not the Scouts we talked about gettting. They are going to be bigger than we thought. HUGE!” I decided to go back and look more closely at the pictures of Koda and Summer’s parents.
The mother is a beautiful regular sized Australian Shepherd. We met her in person, she looked just like her picture. We did not ever meet the father. Hmmm. I inspected the picture of the father poodle. Why did I assume he was a smaller poodle? Not a toy or miniature poodle, but I thought he was a smaller standard poodle. Pointy nose and skinny body does not mean petite. It could mean a very lanky TALL poodle for a dad. There are no physical markers in the background for comparison or perspective. His size in this picture deceived me. It reminds me of when you buy an inflatable raft online only to find out it is too short for a 5’8” person, because the model they use in the picture is like 4’2”. So I guess poodle dad is a tall guy.
Not to be misunderstood here, I love these two ginormous puppies! It is actually quite fitting that they have come into our family. We are, in fact, the tall family. PapaBear is 6’4”, I am 5’10”, our oldest son is 6’5”, our daughter is 5’11 1/2”, the next son is 6’3”, and the baby boy is 6’2 1/2”. Height is something we get excited about in this house, recording measurements on the side of the kitchen door. Sports like football, volleyball and basketball are some of our family favorites. My oldest son plays all kind of instruments that benefit from long arms and fingers (ie. Piano, tuba, accordian, and trombone). I love being in the presence of my extremely tall family.
I sat for weeks, night after night, studying the teeny tiny adorable faces of the puppies in the aussiedoodle litter. There may have been more focus on that little puppy stage than the one we are in now. Koda and Summer still pounce around the pillows on the sofa and chew on everything just like young puppies do. Puppyhood is supposed to last for the first two years. They are simply puppies in tall dog bodies. Not very different from my own kids who were often mistaken for being older than they were, especially in sports. Out on the soccer field I could hear parents point at my son and loudly complain, “That kids doesn’t look like he is in kindergarden, we should ask for his birth certificate.” Not everyone likes tall families, try sitting behind us in a theater. I’m happy being tall and can accept the escalating sizes of the dogs. I am hoping the maturity catches up to the physical growth soon.
Koda and Summer, I’m glad you are both so tall, and fit in so well with our family. Just try to make a little space for us on the sofa please, and try not to put your dirty paws up onto the glass backdoor (it makes it hard for me to see out the window).