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Hill’s Brand Horizon

Bernese Mountain Dog

dog Breed Profile

The Bernese mountain dog is a large dog with a beautiful tri-colored coat.


Floppy ears (naturally)



90-120 lbs.

70-100 lbs.


25 in.

(at withers)

26 in.








20-40 minutes/day

Energy level

Laid back


7-9 yrs.












Grooming Needs


Social Needs


Club recognition

AKC Class.


UKC Class.

Guardian Dog



The Bernese Mountain dog Breed

The Bernese makes a good watchdog, and is even better at herding and draft work.

About the Bernese Mountain Dog

The Bernese mountain dog is a large dog with a beautiful tri-colored coat.

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Bernese Mountain Dog personality

The Bernese mountain dog is alert and good-natured. Coming from a working background, they enjoy the challenge of learning new things. They should be obedience trained because of their large size at an early age to make them pleasant household companions. Their natural instincts to guard and work on the farm still carry over in the breed today. The Bernese makes a good watchdog, and is even better at herding and draft work. Draft work is demonstrated in field trails for Bernese mountain dogs and popular with owners today. The dogs are judged on ability to both pull and have control over a cart. As a family pet, the Bernese will enjoy some physical work and a job to do. They are eager to please!

What to expect

Because of the eventual size of the breed, a Bernese needs both obedience and household manners taught at a young age. As a breed, however, they are slow to mature both physically and mentally and should not be pushed into training too rapidly. Although they are large, they are soft dogs and do not do well with harsh correction.

The coat of the Bernese is thick, long and has a bright, natural sheen. This beautiful coat will require daily brushing to keep it clean and prevent matting. Grooming is recommended at least every two weeks. Most shed moderately year round, and usually the coat sheds heavily twice a year. The Bernese mountain dog is a devoted friend who will enjoy accompanying the family everywhere. They thrive on human companionship and will be most happy if allowed to be a house dog. Proper socialization will help ensure that the Bernese is patient with other dogs and with children. As with any breed, however, the level of patience varies with the particular dog. The Bernese is a good watchdog and requires moderate exercise. They make great walking partners!

History of the Bernese Mountain Dog

The original Bernese mountain dog was an all purpose farm dog used to herd cattle, protect the farm and pull milk carts to the local dairy. The name Bernese mountain dog roughly translates from the German berner sennenhund, which literally means Bernese Alpine herdsman's dog. The breed's original name was durrbachler, after an inn where these farm dogs were bought and sold.

Professor Albert Heim preserved the breed from near extinction around the turn of the century. He continued to carefully develop the breed, and by crossing with a Newfoundland, he improved the dog's temperament and size.

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