A bernese mountain dog

Get to Know the Bernese Mountain Dog


Recent Blog:

The majestic Bernese Mountain Dog is a friendly and large dog breed known for its calm and gentle nature, as well as a striking tri-coloured coat. This is a great family dog with a loyal and gentle nature; just be prepared to deal with their thick double coat that sheds year round. Bernese Mountain dog puppies not only need daily brushing, they need plenty of space and exercise… Even more so as they mature!

Exquisite looking as they are – you should only consider getting one if you have a lifestyle and home setup to accommodate their needs. Find out more here.

bernese mountain dog

The Bernese Mountain Dog’s key traits

Bernese Mountain Dogs (also known as Berner Sennenhunds) are one of four mountain-dog breeds from Bern, a vast agricultural region in Switzerland. The others are the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, the Appenzeller Mountain Dog and the Entlebucher Mountain Dog.

A Berne is not only striking with its glorious tri-colour coat, something that makes it very huggable, it’s usually very happy to be a part of the family. Here are some fast facts:

They’re big

The Bernese Mountain Dog is a large breed, weighing between 50 to 90kg and standing between 58 to 70 cm at the shoulder. Because the Bernese are big and energetic, they require plenty of exercise to stay healthy and happy. You’ll want to go on plenty of walks and runs, as well as playing and exploring.

They’re hairy

This breed comes with the need for a sturdy dog brush! From the time it’s a puppy the Bernese Mountain Dog’s thick, tricolour double coat is long and silky, requiring regular grooming to keep it in good condition.

They’re loving

The Bernese are very friendly, loyal, and affectionate. They’re known for their calm and gentle nature, plus being intelligent and eager to please. This means they enjoy spending time with their family and make great companion dogs.

They’re prone to health issues

Unfortunately, Bernese Mountain Dogs have a relatively short lifespan compared to other breeds. They’re prone to certain health conditions such as hip dysplasia in dogs and certain types of cancer. Regular vet check-ups and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is very important to giving them a happy lifespan.

Find out more about what to expect from vet checks here:

Coat of the Bernese Mountain Dog

This large dog breed’s most striking feature is its coat, which comes in black, brown and white. But beware, these pups shed … A LOT. They have a significant amount of hair and require regular grooming to maintain their coat in good condition.

Brush your Bernese’s coat daily, or in the very least once a week to remove tangles and mats, and trim its nails as needed. Also be aware that their thick coat can make them sensitive to heat. It’s important to provide them with a cool and shaded area during hot weather, and be careful not to over-exercise them during the hottest parts of the day.

Can you get a Bernese Mountain Dog puppy in New Zealand?

Yes, it’s possible. Bernese Mountain Dog puppies are popular and you can find them through reputable breeders.

In doing so, always be aware that identifying ethical dog breeders may be a bit of a challenge. You want to avoid puppy mills at all costs, as they breed dogs with little regard for their welfare. Any breeder you approach should provide you with information about the dog’s health, temperament and lineage, along with authentic registration and vaccination documentation.

A good way to find a reputable Bernese Mountain Dog puppy breeder is by contacting a local or national Bernese Mountain Dog club, and by checking with an organisation such as the Dogs New Zealand. They may have a list of reputable breeders and can provide you with information and guidance to help you choose.

Alternatively, if you can find one of these beauties at a rescue organisation, it’s another option to consider. This is a great way to give a dog a second chance and provide them a loving home.

a bernese mountain dog


Let’s take a look at some of the most asked question of Google regarding the Bernese Mountain Dog…

Do Bernese Mountain Dogs drool?

The breed is not known for being heavy drooler, but it can be a characteristic in some. They may drool more when they’re excited, anxious, thirsty, eating or drinking. The extent to which they drool may differ from one dog to another.

Some strategies you can try to minimise drooling would be to feed your Bernese in a specific area that’s easy to clean, provide plenty of water, and keep a towel nearby to wipe away any dribbles.

Also make sure to keep their teeth and gums healthy, right from the Bernese Mountain Dog puppy stage. They’re prone to certain dental problems, so regular dental check-ups and teeth cleaning with your vet are recommended. Read our pet dental insurance article to read more about dental protection.

Do Bernese Mountain Dogs smell?

Overall, Bernese Mountain Dogs don’t smell more than other large dog breeds.

If there’s any smell, it’s likely due to poor hygiene or an underlying health issues. It could be due to dog skin conditions or ear infections. It’s also possible that the smell is caused by an accumulation of oils and dirt in the coat if the dog isn’t groomed regularly.

To keep your Bernese Mountain Dog from smelling, give them regular baths and brush their coat to remove dirt and dead hair. Check for any skin conditions and treat them promptly, as well as keep their ears clean and dry. Regular grooming, including regular tooth brushing, regular ear cleaning and regular clipping of nails, can also help reduce any smells.

a man hugging a dog
Are Bernese Mountain Dog puppies easy to train?

Bernese Mountain Dogs are intelligent and eager to please, making them often fairly easy to train. They respond well to positive reinforcement dog training, which can include the use of treats, praise, and toys.

However, they also have a strong independent streak that may make some Bernese less responsive to commands. Be consistent in their training and keep sessions short and positive. They can also be prone to distraction so it’s important to be patient and persistent with them.

With consistency and patience, you can successfully train your Bernese Mountain Dog to be a well-mannered and obedient companion.

Are Bernese Mountain Dogs hypoallergenic?

No, they’re not considered hypoallergenic. They shed their coat regularly and have a lot of hair! This produces dander – small flakes of skin – and other allergens that can trigger an allergic person’s symptoms.

Keep in mind that no dog is completely hypoallergenic (though some, like Maltese dogs, don’t shed). All breeds have the potential to cause allergic reactions. It’s recommended to spend some time with the dog before committing to one, to see if your allergies are triggered. Also keep in mind that regular grooming, vacuuming and cleaning can help to minimise allergens in the home.

Read more about dog and cat allergies.

a bernese mountain dog

Insure your gorgeous pup

PD Insurance covers small and large dog breeds and most breeds in between! We offer every new customer one or more months of pet insurance cover for free, with puppies usually scoring even more than that.

Even better, the younger they are when you start the cover the less likely they’ll have any pre-existing conditions – which means you’ll enjoy broader coverage. Now’s the time to protect your pup against accident, illness and more with a dog insurance plan that suits their health needs … and your purse strings!

Share on :