Characteristics Of Bernese Mountain Dogs

Characteristics Of Bernese Mountain Dogs

Bernese mountain dogs are outdoor dogs at heart, despite being well-mannered indoors; they require activity and exercise but lack a lot of endurance. When motivated, they have incredible bursts of speed for their size. They enjoy hiking and typically stick close to their people if they are healthy (have no issues with their elbows, hips, or other joints). The Bernese can become aggressive and bark if they aren’t given enough exercise.

Because they are very affectionate, Bernese mountain dogs make a good breed for families with young children. They are calm dogs that tolerate kids climbing over them well. A Bernese, despite having a lot of energy, will also enjoy a quiet evening.

According to the Bernese mountain dog breed standard, dogs should be “good-natured,” “self-assured,” “placid toward strangers,” and “docile,” rather than “aggressive, anxious, or distinctly shy.” When necessary, it only launches an attack (its owner is getting attacked). Individual dogs’ temperaments can vary, and not all examples of the breed have been carefully bred to adhere to the standard. All large breed dogs should receive regular training and activities throughout their lives, as well as good socialization when they are puppies.

Bernese mountain dogs are friendly toward strangers and other animals. They make great stewards. They tend to form strong bonds with just one owner or family and can be distant and wary of outsiders.

Due to musculoskeletal issues, Bernese Mountain Dogs have an unusually high mortality rate. In the UK study, cruciate ligament rupture, hip dysplasia, and arthritis were reported as the causes of death in 6% of Bernese Mountain Dogs; in contrast, mortality from musculoskeletal disorders was reported to be less than 2% for pure-bred dogs overall. A cruciate ligament rupture, arthritis (especially in the shoulders and elbows), hip dysplasia, and other musculoskeletal issues are the four most frequently reported in Bernese Mountain Dog owners compared to owners of other breeds.

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Additionally, the age at which musculoskeletal issues manifest is unusually young. At an average age of 4.3 years in the U.S./Canada study, 11% of living dogs had arthritis.

The majority of other prevalent, non-musculoskeletal morbidity problems affect Berners at similar rates to other breeds. Owners-to-be of Bernese Mountain Dogs should be ready to deal with a big dog who might develop mobility issues at a young age. Dog wheelchairs, lifting harnesses and slings, and ramps for house or car access are some solutions for helping dogs with mobility issues.

Joint pain may be lessened with cozy bedding. Owners of Bernese Mountain Dogs should make sure that their dogs receive OFA and CERF certificates due to these prevalent medical conditions.

Duration Of Life

In terms of purebred dogs in general and other breeds of comparable size, the Bernese is one of the breeds with the shortest lifespans. A Bernese Mountain Dog can expect to live for 8 to 9 years on average. The median lifespan for other breeds of comparable size is 10–11 years. In a UK survey conducted in 2004, the oldest-dead Bernese Mountain Dog was 15.2 years old.

Characteristics Of Bernese mountain Dogs

Because of their placid disposition, the Bernese are excellent at pulling small carts or wagons, which is what they were originally used for in Switzerland. When properly trained, they take pleasure in giving young passengers rides in a cart or marching in parades like the Conway, New Hampshire, holiday parade. Carting workshops are frequently offered by local Bernese clubs. For the breed, carting competitions are held.


The Bernese Mountain Dog gained access to AKC Herding Events on July 1, 2010. Non-competitive herding tests can be used to assess a dog’s trainability and herding instincts. Berners with basic herding propensities can be trained to participate in herding competitions.


All year long, Bernese Mountain Dogs shed, with seasonal changes being the time of year when they shed the most. To keep its coat neat and lessen the amount of fur on the floor and furniture, the Bernese typically only needs to be brushed once per week, with additional brushing needed in the spring and fall. Depending on how active it is and how frequently it spends time in the mud, the Bernese will only need to take a bath every few months or so.

The Bernese Mountain Dog’s ears require extra care because they can collect bacteria, dirt, and liquid. Weekly ear cleanings with a veterinary-recommended cleanser reduce the chance of an ear infection.

Other Characteristics Of Bernese Mountain Dog are:

This breed’s dogs make excellent watchdogs, but that also means they have a propensity for loud barking. Even though they are quite gentle when fully grown and properly trained, they may want to chase and play rough with smaller animals.