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AKC Meet the Breeds: Bernese Mountain Dog

American Kennel Club, Inc. (c) 2011

One of four varieties of Swiss Mountain Dog, the Bernese Mountain Dog is the only variety that possesses a long, silky coat. A hardy dog that thrives in cold weather, the "Berner's" intelligence, strength and agility helped him perform the drafting and droving work in the mountainous region where he originated. Today, this versatile breed participates in conformation, obedience, carting, agility, tracking, herding and therapy work. Like the other Swiss breeds, they are tri-colored, with patches of black, rust and white.

A Look Back
Bernese Mountain Dogs (Berner Sennenhund) originated in Switzerland and are named for the Canton of Bern. Historically, Berners were used as general purpose farm dogs. Their large, sturdy frames and calm, confident temperaments made them ideal for pulling carts to market, driving dairy cattle, watching the farm and acting as companions to farmers.

Right Breed for You?
Farm dogs by heritage, Berners need a moderate amount of exercise as well as consistent obedience training. As a double-coated breed, they also tend to shed, and so require regular brushing. Their gentle, easygoing manner and the need to be close to their people makes them a good fit for families.

  • Working Group; AKC recognized in 1937.
  • Ranging in size from 23 to 27 1/2 inches tall at the shoulder.
  • Draft dog; drover; watch dog.

 

 

AKC Meet the Breeds is a registered trademark of the American Kennel Club, Inc.