Bernese Mountain Dogs
The Bernese Mountain Dog originated in Switzerland, in the canton of Bern, for which it is named. They were an all purpose farm dog whose jobs included carting, driving cattle and guarding property and livestock. A friendly outgoing nature was needed as the dogs accompanied their owners to market.
The Bernese is a large, tricolor breed with a moderate coat. Males range from 80 to 120 lbs, while females range from 70 to 100 lbs. Male height is generally between 25 and 27 inches, females between 23 and 25 inches at the shoulder.
The Bernese is a people dog and does best living in the home with its human family. It is a versatile breed and does well in conformation, obedience, tracking, herding, as well as many other dog sports.
The Bernese requires regular brushing, this will help control shedding. Bathing also helps remove dead hairs and keeps the coat healthy.
The Bernese is an eager to please dog which makes training easy. Positive reinforcement type training is most effective with this breed.
While the Bernese does make the ideal pet there are several health concerns in the breed, such as hip and elbow dysplasia, cancer, PRA, cataracts and SAS (a heart condition), as well as a susceptibility to immune disorders. Screening can be done for some of these conditions, however there is no screening for cancer which is fairly prevalent in the breed. The prevalence of cancer has shortened the life expectancy by quite a bit and owners shouldn't expect their Bernese to live much beyond 8 years of age, however many still do live to a ripe old age.
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