- Not AKC Recognized
- Lifespan: 8 years
- Size: large
- Energy: medium
- Recommended Crate Size: 42" dog crate*
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Table of Contents
Gorgeous, calm, and intelligent - that’s the Bernedoodle! A creative cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle, this delightful hybrid breed has a lot to offer.
He is a fantastic companion dog who’s overflowing with personality, even to the point of being goofy at times. He barely sheds at all, if any, making him the ideal choice for those who suffer from dog and dander allergies.
While the Bernedoodle has the smarts and zany traits of the Poodle, he gets his athletic side from the Bernese blood that runs through him. He loves to hike, even in the snow, and will enthusiastically accompany you up any mountain.
He isn’t afraid to work either. At the end of the day, he’ll curl up with you on the couch to watch television or catch a good nap. This versatile dog is a best friend indeed.
Bernedoodles are stunning and downright fascinating. Since they are a hybrid breed, they cannot be members of the AKC. So, if you are wanting a dog to show or for competition, this breed is not going to qualify.
While most are the ideal mix of their parents - a Poodle and a Bernese Mountain Dog, no two are identical and not only that, there can even be vast differences between two pups in the same liter.
Choosing a breeder who is able to provide you with what you are looking for in one is helpful due to the great variations and unpredictability.
Something to watch out for is that, like other many hybrids, this crossbreed comes from two parents whose breeds have been extensively inbred. When breeds are overbred, health problems and temperament issues can prevail.
While the majority of Bernedoodles are calm and loving creatures, some turn out to be very skittish and stubborn. When a trait is born into a dog due to faulty genetics, it is difficult to change and can be extremely hard to deal with as a pet parent.
Bernedoodles can originate from a cross of Bernese Mountain Dog with a Standard, Miniature, or Toy Poodle. There are different scenarios that can occur when breeding such as mixing a Bernedoodle with a Mini Poodle which is a Mini Bernedoodle.
Tiny Bernedoodles are begotten by crossing a Mini Bernedoodle with a Toy Poodle. That fact accounts for much of the variety that can result.
Bernedoodles who are not stunted by overbreeding is absolutely amazing. He aims to please and hits the mark, the ideal companion for those who want a dog to share in their active lifestyle and serve as an oversize lap dog too.
Like snowflakes are different, all Bernedoodles have unique coats. The typical colorings of a Bernedoodle, however, are black and white, pure black, black and brown, and tri-color (a mix of black, white, and brown).
There are other colors and color combinations as well. Pups in a litter can come out favoring either side - the Poodle or Bernese. In general, Bernedoodles’ coats are wavy but occasionally there are those with straight hair.
Most, however, take on a predominant Bernese look with their larger build and somewhat of a shaggy big Teddy bear appearance. The most desired look is with markings along the lines of a Bernese while the sought after temperament includes a good bit of the Poodle side and just enough of the Bernese.
Size ranges as much as looks do with this hybrid breed. Much depends upon their parents’ size but some are just in the luck of the draw and the gene pool. Females are likely to be smaller as with most other breeds.
For Standard Poodles mixes, the weight is usually from 50 pounds and on up, topping out around 90 pounds and averaging 70-90. They generally are 23-29 inches in height.
Miniature Poodle crosses usually yield Mini Bernedoodles weighing in between 25 and 49 pounds and standing between 18-22 inches high at the shoulder while Tiny Bernedoodles will be smaller.
It is recommended to provide feed formulated to Bernedoodle large breeds, or, as the case may be - medium to large due to the variance in size associated with them.
Do be certain to provide a good quality product that correlates with his nutritional needs. Speaking with your dog’s veterinarian can help you figure out what nutrient requirements he has. The frequency of meals is another thing to consider when consulting with your vet.
As your puppy grows, his feeding routine and amounts may vary. As with any pet, be sure to keep plenty of fresh water readily available to him at all times.
As a rule, the less curly your dog’s coat is, the easier it will be to maintain. Especially considering the Poodle roots of the Bernedoodle, most are pretty curly so they will need to be regularly brushed so their coat doesn’t tangle and mat.
The curlier their coat, the less they will shed though. Be sure to have a curly Bernedoodle clipped every few months and a less curly coated one as needed.
The curlier the coat, the more often a Bernedoodle will need to be bathed too in order to keep him clean and his hair fresh.
If your dog spends a good amount of time outside, he may naturally trim his nails down. You will still need to clip them but not as often. Be sure to keep his ears clean and dry too.
Bernedoodles are fairly simple to train and benefit from 20-60 minutes of daily exercise. They are highly intelligent and take well to attention and to showing off. In their later years, however, training may become a huge challenge as they slow down around their seventh year if not before.
It is imperative to use a positive tone when training this breed as they get their feelings hurt easily and can become stubborn as well.
Socializing your Bernedoodle early in life is highly recommended. They tend to be naturally reserved and a bit cautious where strangers are concerned. Training him during his puppy years will produce a more social dog for his entire lifetime.
While training a Bernedoodle is not difficult, it does require patience, especially with the males who tend to want to be class clowns and can get stubborn in an instant if they don’t like the way the training session is going.
Females tend to train easier. With both, male and female, you will need to remain calm and assertive or you will be taking steps backward. When he’s got it, he’s got it though and he is not likely to ever forget what you have taught him.
Pet Crates Direct recommends a large, 42" dog crate* for most adult Bernedoodle but due to variances in lineage, a smaller or even larger size may be required.
To understand the personality of this rare and beautiful dog, it’s important to take a look at the two breeds that he consists of. The Bernese Mountain Dog hails from the Swiss Alps where he was bred to work pulling carts and driving cattle.
This intelligent and strong breed sports a thick double coat to keep him warm in the snow that abounded in the mountains from which he came. He loves cold weather and does quite well in it due to his ability to stay warm.
He excels in trekking, agility, endurance, and herding. He is medium energy. Because of his fierce loyalty and loving nature, he makes a superb therapy dog.
The Poodle side of the Bernedoodle brings other characteristics to the table. Poodles are highly intelligent.
It is also imperative to take into consideration the exact mix of the Bernedoodle to determine his personality traits. Smaller breeds, like the Mini and Tiny, will usually have more bounding energy.
The Bernedoodle is loyal beyond measure. They bond so tightly that if rehomed later on in adult life, they may never be able to attach due to the fact they have given their all to the former owner.
Bernedoodles love attention and will absolutely soak it up. They may clown around in order to get their fair share of it. With this trait in mind, training this breed is easy if you can break through the stubborn steak they may have.
They will like that doing tricks earn them plenty of attention and will be more than eager to learn more of them and to perform them as well. You might say they are “hams”.
Something worth noting is that Bernedoodle females are more on the independent side whereas the males are more stubborn and like to put on shows for attention.
One health issue that is prevalent with this breed is hip and elbow dysplasia. Other diseases to be mindful of is epilepsy beginning around his fourth year, heart disease, and cancer. The cancer fatality rate of the Bernedoodle accounts for a good part of his life expectancy which is around 8 years.
Is a Bernedoodle Right for You?
A Bernedoodle isn’t a good fit for everyone. The first thing to take into consideration is if you “pre-order” one, there are a myriad of possibilities as to what you will get.
Bernedoodles can range greatly in size, coloring, and temperament too. You may end up with a female who is smaller and takes on more of the Poodle characteristics of being extremely bright, and very independent.
Or, you may end up with one who leans more toward the Bernese Mountain Dog side and is quite large and smart but goofy and especially if it’s a male, maybe stubborn too. If you pick from a litter, you will have more of an idea of what you are getting but still leave much up to chance.
There are some traits that are common to the breed though. It is important to make sure your lifestyle, your personality and the lifestyle and personality of any family members you have will be a good match.
Bernedoodles are good with children but if you get a really large one and have small kids, you might be in for trouble. With that in mind, if your family is active and would like a dog that is as well, the Bernedoodle brings with him the Bernese Mountain Dog characteristics of being great trekkers, climbers, and all-around endurance athletes.
If you are wanting one that can be outside by day and is flexible enough to be a good family indoor pet at the end of the day, this breed has you covered.
This breed doesn’t shed much and doesn’t tend to drool much either. He can squeeze into a fairly small home but isn’t completely ideal for an apartment that is tiny because of his large size and because of the fact that he can, at times, become mouthy and bark a bit.
If you live where it is cold in the winter months or even year-round, this dog might be perfect to warm things up for you. He loves the snow and adores snow activities such as long hikes, accompanying you while you trek in snowshoes, and all other snow-bound activities.
While many Bernedoodles do live where the summers are hot, the most ideal place for this guy is a milder climate. They tend to hold in a good bit of heat and like their Berne side, don’t really care for extremely hot temperatures.
Bernedoodles take after their Berne heritage in that they are lovers. They love with all their hearts and are loyal till the end. If you take one on, be sure it is for life. He will have it no other way.
Bernedoodles don’t have a super long life expectancy. That can be difficult on owners. If you are willing to give him all the love he can handle during the years he does have on earth, you can bet he will do the same in return and...even more so.
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