viewed by the IMIER Kennel


he Bernese Mountain Dog is a very affectionate dog, easy to love and so lovable. It is a great loyal friend who will follow you everywhere and will always be at your side through the ups and downs of life.

The bernese has a look, an eye that sees everything and will not meddle in everything. His instinct will ensure that the extended family, his owners, children, cats and other animals are under its discreet surveillance. Once he feels at home and he has the necessary maturity, he will feel imbued with this important task.

His physical compared often to bear cubs, especially in young age, his soulful eyes and sense of responsibility will be the ideal candidate to use and abuse of his privileges and power. He is so cute that it automatically calls for forgiveness, no matter what he does. In other words, the Bernese Mountain Dog requires responsible owners who will educate the dog and take their own place as pack leader. It is a priority, if not the cute little puppy will become a less cute big dog. Your duty is to educate then to enjoy the pleasure of its company.

A good Bernese Mountain Dog, for someone who loves the breed is a dog that is near perfection but it is not flawless! Beware, the dog can be very demanding of love and attention, and eventually be too intrusive, but with a good education and trainig he will take his place and share your space and time in a balanced manner.

It may, unfortunately, like humans and other animals have health problems. The lottery of life is not always fair. We know because we may have experienced it with loved ones, it is no different with dogs. We have to apply the same principle with our dearest dog friend meaning that we have to be able to care if he has a health problem as much as we need to be able to accept life’s challenges and learn to say goodbye when the time comes. And because it is such a loving dog, it takes so much courage and many tissues to let go.


It was important for me to talk about the Bernese mountain dog’ soul before writing about his appearance. In everyday life we are in contact with the inner being, his qualities, his presence, his affection. Our eyes forget his appearance when life is pleasant in its company. Just imagine the dog being physically perfect but detestable, you’ll see everything in a different angle.

At the Imier Kennel, we like a dog looking and well-typed, beautiful head, good stance, strong and athletic. We strive size and weight who live in the middle of the standard, a Swiss type, inclined to work fairly sporty, a bit rustic, with average length hair.

You will find below the official standard of the race for Canada.


The Bernese Mountain Dog likes to work and please its owners. It can even do obedience, rally-o, taffy cart, carry a load, making search and rescue, agility and herding. He has a good nose, but not really hunting skills. The Bernese Mountain Dog has no natural ability to bring back objects.


Our job is to try to meet the charming temperament typical of the breed to a proportionate appearance, associated with good health and longevity. This is a very interesting challenge that demands to be passionate!

Our goal is present in all decisions, with the constant hope of attaining it. We are masters of our decisions, we assume fully, but we cannot control nature or genetic endless combinations that can result from mating. Maybe one day science will give us more information about it.

Honestly, with us nothing is ever decided in order to do with wrong intents. We apply the old method of acting in "good father" in its modern sense to see the good of everyone and the good of the race.


To serve our customers we provide service after sale for the dog’s lifetime. Please contact us if you have any questions. The extent of our skills, we will try to answer your questions or help you find information. It's important to understand that we don't have veterinary training so the advice we provide is based on our knowledge and years of experience with the dogs.


The information below has been provided by the Canadian Kennel Club, Copyright 1999

  • Please note that the Canadian standard of the Bernese Mountain Dog is different from the American and European standard.

    Origin and Purpose

    The Bernese Mountain Dog takes its name from the Canton of Bern in Switzerland, its native land. It is one of the four Swiss tri-colour breeds known by the collective name Sennenhunde, the only one of the four with a long coat. The Bernese Mountain Dog and his ancestors lived for many generations as farm dogs with occasional use as draft dogs. From this background developed a hardy, natural, good-natured working breed that today is known principally as a faithful family companion.

    General Appearance

    Large, sturdy, well balanced working dog of substantial bone. Square in appearance from withers to ground and withers to tail set. Heavy-coated with distinctive characteristic markings. In comparison with the opposite sex, dogs appear masculine, bitches feminine without loss of type.


    The Bernese temperament is one of the breed’s strongest assets. Consistent, dependable, with a strong desire to please. Self-confident, alert, good natured. Attached and loyal to human family; may be aloof or suspicious with strangers, but never sharp or shy. A dog must stand for examination when required to do so by its handler.


    Dogs 24.4-27.6 inches (62-70 cm), best size 26-26.8 inches (66-68 cm); bitches 22.8-26 inches (58-66 cm), best size 23.6-24.8 inches (60-63 cm). Height measured at withers. The stocky, well-balanced appearance must be maintained.

    Coat and Colour

    The adult coat is thick, moderately long, possibly with a slight wave but never curly. It has a bright natural sheen. In texture it is soft rather than harsh, but is weather resistant, easily kept and resists matting. There is a soft, seasonal undercoat. Compulsory markings: Jet-black ground colour. Rich russet markings (dark reddish brown is most favoured) appear on the cheeks, in a spot over each eye, in a patch above each foreleg, and on all four legs between the black of the upper leg and the white of the feet. Clean white markings as follows: On chest extending uninterrupted to under chin; also a slight to middle-sized blaze extending into a muzzle band which is not so wide as to obliterate the russet on the cheek (and which preferably does not extend past the corners of the mouth). Preferable markings: White feet with white reaching at the Canadian Kennel Club Official Breed Standards

    GROUP III WORKING DOGS III-3 January 2004 III-3.1 GROUP III WORKING DOGS highest the pasterns and a white tip of tail. Markings should be symmetrical. Too little white is preferable to too much.


    Skull: Flat and broad with a slight furrow; defined, but not exaggerated stop. Muzzle strong and straight; roughly square proportions, tapering only very slightly. Muzzle is slightly shorter than length of skull. Lips are fairly clean and tight; black in colour. Teeth: jaw is strong with good teeth meeting in a scissors bite. Dentition should be complete. Nostrils well open and black in colour. Eyes dark brown in colour, almond shaped, and well set apart; tight eyelids. Expression is intelligent, animated and gentle. Ears middle-sized, triangular in shape with rounded tip. Set above eye level high on side of head; hanging close to the head in repose, brought forward at the base when alert.


    Strong, muscular of medium length, well set on. Dewlaps are very slightly developed.


    Approximately square from withers to ground and withers to tail set. The body is sturdy. The chest is broad, with good depth of brisket reaching at least to the elbows; ribs are well sprung. The back is firm and level. Loins are strong and muscular. The croup is broad, well muscled.


    Shoulders are well muscled, flat lying and well laid back. Forelegs are straight with substantial bone; parallel stance. Elbows are well under shoulders. Pasterns are slightly sloping, but not weak. Feet are proportionate in size, round and compact. Dew claws are preferably removed.


    The hindquarters are powerful, with broad, well-muscled thighs and substantial bone. Stifles are well angulated. Hocks are well let down, turning neither in nor out. Pasterns are wide and straight, standing parallel. Feet are proportionate in size, round and compact. Dewclaws must be removed in the first few days of life.


    Bushy, hanging straight, with bone reaching to the hock joint or slightly below. Carried low in repose, higher when the dog is in motion or alert. An upward arc is permissible, but the tail should never curl over itself or be carried over the back.


    The natural travelling gait of the breed is a slow trot, but it is capable of speed and agility. Good reach in front. Strong drive from the rear, flexing well at the stifles. The level backline is maintained; there is no wasted action. Front and rear feet of each side travel in lines parallel to direction of motion, converging towards a centre line at increased speeds.


    A fault is any deviation from the standard, to be weighed in accordance with the degree of deviation. In addition and in particular: Major faults: ectropion or entropion; undershot or overshot mouth; tail rolled over back. Minor faults (subject to degree of fault): deficiency of type, particularly lack of substance; overly long or thin body; light or round eyes; level bite; incomplete dentition; too narrow or too snipey muzzle; too massive or too light head; too light russet markings or impure colour; grey colouring in black coat; nonsymmetrical markings, especially facial; white neck patch; white anal patch; curly coat in adult dog; splayed feet; kink in tail.


    Cryptorchid or monorchid males; split nose; absent markings as described in compulsory markings; white neck ring; blue eye; ground colour other than black.

    Canadian Kennel Club Official Breed Standards


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