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Bernese Mountain Dog


Bernese Mountain Dog



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It is thought that the Bernese Mountain Dog began its origins as a farm dog in the Swiss mountains as paintings from the end of the 18th century display this type of dog. However, many foreign dogs by the end of the 19th century were being imported to Switzerland and there was a danger that the native breeds would be lost.  Named after the Canton of Berne, Switzerland where the breed is widely known, this sturdy dog has been used for driving livestock, draft work and as a farm guardian.  Because of this dog¬ís gentle, happy temperament, the Bernese Mountain Dog makes a great family companion.



Alert and good natured the Bernese Mountain Dog should have a friendly stable temperament, and never be nervous, shy or aggressive. Even though this dog will give a warning bark they are not a guard dog and if well socialized from puppy should be easy to live with and quite social.  These dogs are fairly easy to train and get along with other pets if introduced early. These gentle, cheerful dogs are very intelligent, not overly dominant and just love to be with their family especially the children.



Height:   58-71cm  (23-28in)

Weight:  36-50kg  (80-110lb)


The striking and friendly Bernese Mountain Dog is a sturdy, heavy dog, with a beautiful weather-resistant tri-color double coat of black with symmetrical markings of rust and white. The dog should have a white blaze on the chest, white on the head and toes, and rust markings over each eye, on the cheeks, sides of the chest, under the tail and on each leg.  It wears a coat which is moderately long and either straight or slightly wavy and have dark eyes which display a gentle expression. The tail is long and bushy and carried low when in repose.



Daily to weekly brushing of the long thick coat is important and as this breed is a seasonal heavy shedder, extra care will be required. Bathe or dry shampoo as deemed necessary. If you don't have the time to bath or groom your dog, your local  dog grooming salon provides these services.


Life Expectancy

6-8 Years


Health Concerns

Even though the Bernese Mountain Dog is a very hardy breed hip and elbow dysplasia can be common.  These dogs have also been known to be prone to cancer, bloat and eyelid problems.



The Bernese Mountain Dog is not recommended for apartment life. They will do best with at least a large, fenced-in yard.  Because of their thick coat these dogs prefer the cooler climates as they become quite uncomfortable in warm weather. These large active dogs require daily walks for up to an hour for adults with gentle exercise and no rough play until these dogs have finished growing up at around 18 months or they can hurt their growing bones.

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Working Dogs; This group  includes more breeds than any other. These dogs were bred to do a variety of work from guarding, herding, pulling sleds and rescue for example. A few in this group include Border Collie, Boxer and Briard to mention a few.


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