Adopters should ensure that they are working with reputable rescue groups. The Poodle Club of America is a trustworthy resource for rescue referrals. Good rescues should also have thorough screening processes and reasonable adoption fees.
Potential adopters should listen to the shelter or rescue staff and trust their judgment. Although it is easy to fall in love with a dog from a photograph or a quick meeting, shelter staff are experienced at evaluating temperaments and finding good matches.
Adopters should be prepared before visiting the rescue group. Ask what documentation or information is needed, and bring it. There should be plenty of time allotted for the visit so it is not rushed or stressful.
Poodles are smart dogs, but they can be shy and aloof until they bond with new people. An adopter should be patient with a new dog and allow plenty of time for it to settle into its new environment. Rescued dogs may need some training, including house training, so adopters should plan to approach that gently. If there are already dogs living in the house, the adopter should have a plan to introduce them slowly and carefully to prevent fights.
Poodles also have special grooming requirements due to their unique coats, so the adopter needs to have a plan. Although good rescue centers send their dogs home with healthy coats, the dogs may quickly need grooming again. Poodles typically need professional grooming every four to six weeks and regular brushing in the interim.