Breed Group: Working
Weight: Male: 90-120; Female: 70-100 lbs
Height: Male: 25-27.5; Female: 23-26 inches
Color(s): tricolored; black with tan markings and white flashings
The exact origin of this breed is unknown, but many believe they began their existence as a farm dog in the Swiss mountains. Their large hardy build and calm nature made them ideal for pulling carts, herding cattle, and being a farmer's companion. Bernese Mountain Dogs are a highly versatile breed.
The Bernese Mountain Dog is commonly referred to as the "Berner". This wonderful breed has a long list of attributes. They are strong, agile, and highly intelligent. Their gentle demeanor and stunning appearance has contributed to this breed's growing popularity. There are few dog breeds that can match the Bernese Mountain Dogs striking appearance, work ethic, and companion skills.
This breed is by nature, loving and alert. They are generally tolerant, sweet, and gentle. The Bernese Mountain Dog is typically excellent with children. However, since they are a large breed, they should never be left unsupervised with small children or children unknown to the dog. They thrive on human companionship and activity and may develop behavioral problems if they are deprived of social interaction. The Berner is protective but is not aggressive unless threatened or provoked. They may be aloof to strangers and have a tendency to be shy. This breed is a devoted indoor member of the family and a willing outdoor helper.
The Bernese Mountain Dog requires daily brushing, with extra care needed during their heavy seasonal shedding. A periodic bath or dry shampooing is recommended. They are typically a hardy breed, but may have a tendency to suffer from elbow or hip dysplasia, cancer, bloat, or eyelid problems. Their size and thick coat make them highly susceptible to heat stroke.
The Bernese Mountain Dog has a stunning weather-resistant tri-color double coat. The coat is black with symmetrical markings of white and rust, moderate in length and either slightly way or straight. It is very thick and has a bright natural sheen. This breed is a seasonal heavy shedder.
This breed benefits from early socialization and basic obedience. Bernese Mountain Dogs are extremely sensitive and will not respond to harsh or heavy-handed training methods. All training should be done with positive techniques such as respect, reward, love, fairness, and consistency.
The Bernese Mountain Dog needs an inordinate amount of exercise, interaction, and activity. They require a minimum half hour of vigorous exercise daily as well as several outside trips. They are not recommended for apartment dwelling, as they need a securely fenced large yard to run and play. They excel in conformation, obedience, tracking, herding, and agility.
Help reduce the number of dogs in shelters by doing your due diligence. Many puppies are often purchased with little or no knowledge of what goes into parenting one. Uneducated decisions often leave the puppy in need of adoption and in the care of rescue groups. Bringing home a puppy into your family has many benefits but we first implore you to educate yourself. An informed decision will take into account the characteristics of the breed, your lifestyle, expected veterinary care, the demands and limitations of owning one, their activity requirements and levels of companionship required.
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