It’s no secret that the whip-smart Poodle is a wildly popular dog breed. Being elegantly confident, independent, affectionate, and athletic, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better breed out there.
And just when you thought it couldn’t get better, you throw the Bernese Mountain dog in the mix and what do you get? The widely loved Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle Mix – otherwise known as the Bernedoodle.
This breed has all the excellence of the Poodle combined with the loving, loyal family-orientated traits of the Bernese Mountain Dog. These designer canines are the perfect combination of a gentle giant and a brainy pooch.
This post delves into everything you might wish to find out about the Bernedoodle so that you will have everything you need to know before embarking on parenthood.
- 1 1. History of the Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle Mix
- 2 2. Personality and Temperament
- 3 3. Socialization
- 4 4. They Are Hypoallergenic
- 5 5. Grooming
- 6 6. Bernedoodle Health Problems
- 7 7. What Size is a Bernedoodle?
- 8 8. Bernedoodle Coats
- 9 9. How much are Bernedoodle Puppies?
- 10 10. Diet Requirements
- 11 11. Exercise Requirements
- 12 12. Pros of Owning a Bernedoodle
- 13 13. Cons of Owning a Bernedoodle
- 14 14. Male and Female Bernedoodles
- 15 Final Thoughts on the Bernedoodle
1. History of the Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle Mix
It’s unclear when the very first breeding of the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog occurred but the first intentional breeding happened in 2003 in Canada. The first litter of Bernedoodles was bred in Ontario by Sherry Rupke and she still works on developing this hybrid breed today.
To understand this mix breed best, it helps to understand its parent breeds first. The beloved Poodle originated in Germany and France around the 1400s.
These hounds were primarily used as retriever dogs, particularly retrievers of waterfowl for hunters. However groomed and finicky these dogs may appear to be in shows today, they are in fact hard-working hounds who were referred to as ‘duck dogs’ for their excellent work in water-animal retrieving.
In fact, the Poodle’s prize-winning coat that you see today was initially developed for practical purposes. They spend a lot of time in the water and their fur was designed to prevent getting caught on underwater debris while they were hunting.
Bernese Mountain Dog
The Bernedoodle’s other parent, the Bernese Mountain Dog originated in the farmlands of Switzerland in a canton called Bern which is where they are said to get their names. These excellent dogs were bred as working type canines. They did everything from cattle herding, to pulling carts and acting as watchdogs and loving companions.
These hounds are sizable and sturdy, with a plethora of love and loyalty to offer. Their friendly and calm natures made them well suited for daily tasks as well as for tracking activities and obedience training.
The Bernedoodle is a hybrid of two pure breeds rather than a new breed and is therefore not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). However the American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Breed Registry and the International Designer Canine Registry all recognize this hybrid breed.
2. Personality and Temperament
The goofy Bernedoodle is one hefty combination of cuteness and loyalty. The Alpine giant’s silly, loveable qualities mixed with the intelligent Poodle leaves very little not to love. Although their individual personalities within the breed can often vary.
These playful pups also make for stellar family dogs who thrive when surrounded by people. They are particularly kid-friendly doggos – they love the little ones, so it should be no problem integrating these pups into your young family. They will take their family role very seriously and love every bit of being part of your household.
These hybrid pups gain the best features of both their parent breeds and the result is an easily trainable, smart, loving family dog. They are also great for novice owners who haven’t parented many dogs previously.
They are super easygoing and eager to please. They are equally happy playing outside or cuddling up with their favorite humans on the couch for a Netflix marathon.
Bernedoodles are undoubtedly very clever dogs who are easy to train but this doesn’t mean that they don’t require a stern hand when they are young. Bernedoodles inherit a bit of the Bernese’s apprehension when it comes to being around strangers which is why socialization is important with this breed.
These dogs are no small breed so in order to keep them in line when they are older, their socialization with people and other animals should start young. If not, they may develop habits like jumping up on people or unintentionally hurting small children.
Do Bernedoodles Get Along with Other Pets?
For the most part, this breed gets along just fine with other dogs. These hounds love playtime so it may even be beneficial if you have other pets so they can have a playmate for company when you can’t be there.
However, it will of course be ideal to introduce them when they’re still young. And similarly, your Bernedoodle and your cat have a better chance of a happy relationship if they meet at a young age.
While these hounds aren’t known for having a big prey drive, they do have a little Poodle in them. These intelligent pooches were initially bred to chase and catch birds. So best not to leave your Bernedoodle with small animals just in case the Poodle in them follows an urge.
Do Bernedoodles get Along With People?
These are family dogs through and through. While they are on the bigger side, they are well-behaved around children. In fact, they aren’t snappy when it comes to rougher play which is when their size is beneficial. So if your little one goes for an ear or yanks a handful of hair, your Bernedoodle will likely remain calm.
They have a gentle nature but still require training to avoid injuries caused by jumping up or other impulsive actions. Luckily training won’t be a problem since your Bernedoodle is intelligent and eager to please.
4. They Are Hypoallergenic
If this pooch doesn’t already have enough winning qualities, then perhaps the fact that they are hypoallergenic will convince you. Bernedoodle’s inherited their Poodle parent’s low-shedding coat which makes them ideal for allergic owners who struggle with shedding fur.
Dog fur usually sheds as it grows but Poodles have hair rather than fur. The hair continues to grow without really shedding which means it will need regular trimming. A poodle has a single-layer coat which means less fur ends up all over your clothing and furniture.
Another cause of allergic reactions from dogs is saliva, urine, and dander (microscopic skin flakes that shed). Thanks to their Poodle parent, Bernadoodles produce minimal dander, they don’t excessively salivate, and these dogs don’t shed heavily.
As we’ve covered, these dogs are low-shedding which is a bonus when it comes to cutting down on your house cleaning. However, they are a little higher maintenance in the grooming department.
Their daily grooming will mostly just consist of gently brushing their coat. Luckily this is a great time to bond with your beloved fur baby and many people use it as a time to grow intimacy with their pooch.
A slicker brush is good to use for overall grooming and a curry brush is best if you have a short-haired pooch. A fine-toothed comb is best for puppies with thin hair or for removing tangles from your pup’s coat.
Much like humans, your pooch’s nails will need regular cutting to avoid them catching on things or hurting someone in an accidental scratch. If you hear click-clacking on the floor or see protruding nails over their pads then it’s likely time for a cut. The dog nail clippers you use will depend on your pup’s size.
And readying some doggy treats might be helpful for distraction purposes. It’s perfectly acceptable to opt instead for the professional grooming route. Your groomer may even teach you a trick or two for at-home grooming.
If you don’t feel confident in your Bernedoodle’s grooming needs or you simply don’t have time then there are plenty of reputable groomers who will take the best care of your fur baby. Bear in mind only after your pup reaches three or four months old should professional grooming become an option.
6. Bernedoodle Health Problems
For the most part, these canines are healthy pups that live a long and happy life. Thanks to their crossbreeding genes, these puppies are less prone to congenital diseases which of course saves on management costs.
Bernese Mountain Poodle Mix Dogs have a minor tendency to gain weight which in turn can lead to some health issues. To avoid these, be sure to monitor their energy output like their exercise, as well as keep an eye on their food intake. It might be a good idea to invest in a slow-feeder to ensure mealtimes are slowed down.
Like any parent, it’s good to know any areas your baby may be at risk so you can be best prepared. If you are raising a Bernedoodle pup then the most common health issues to look out for are the following:
Serious Health Issues
- Elbow Dysplasia: This condition involves multiple abnormalities in the development of the elbow joint.
- Hip dysplasia: Hip Dysplasia causes the hip joint to loosen leading to mobility issues and pain. It occurs in the growing stage in dogs. The hip and cartilage wear down causing issues like arthritis.
- Hot Spots: They are prone to skin problems like hot spots which are skin lesions that are red and inflamed. It is also known as moist dermatitis.
- Sebaceous Adenitis: This immune-mediated disorder causes inflammation in the sebaceous glands in the skin which are responsible for keeping a supple and soft coat.
Less Serious Health Issues
- Cataracts: Eye problems like Cataracts occur in this breed where dogs develop cloudiness in the eye which disturbs their vision.
- Color Dilution Alopecia: CDA is a genetic recessive inherited condition. It results in patches of hair loss or thinning as well as flaky and itchy skin.
- Hyperadrenocorticism: HAC is also known as Cushing’s disease. It’s a fairly common endocrine syndrome that affects older dogs. The disease is generally caused by tumors of the pituitary or adrenal glands.
In order to best care for your Bernedoodle baby, genetic testing is a good idea as well as regular vet checkups. Your awareness of possible conditions will allow you to keep an eye out for any warning signs that may manifest early on.
7. What Size is a Bernedoodle?
These adorable pups come in various sizes depending on their parent breeds. This means you can get a Bernedoodle in any size that suits your fancy, your living space, or your lifestyle best.
The main size varieties that these pooches come in are toy, miniature, and standard. Toy varieties weigh around 10 lbs to 24 lbs and are around 12 inches to 17 inches in size. The Miniature pups are between 25 lbs and 49 lbs with a height range of 18 inches to 22 inches. And lastly, the Standard variety weighs in around 50 lbs to 90 lbs reaching heights between 23 inches and 29 inches.
8. Bernedoodle Coats
These loveable canines don a variety of coat colors and types which creates a lovely diversity amongst the breed. The most common coat type amongst Bernedoodles is long and wavy whereas a less common variety is the straight-coat type. The pups with curly or wavy coats are less prone to shedding and the hair remains trapped in the curl coil.
There is quite a range in colors when it comes to Bernedoodle coats. Some of their coats are pure black, while others are black and white, or black and brown. Bernedoodles coats can also be tri-colored which have patches of black, white, and brown. The most popular coat colors and markings of a Bernedoodle usually resemble the tri-colored Bernese Mountain Dog.
When it comes to their coat thickness they hit quite the happy medium. Their coats help them thrive in cooler temperatures while also providing a fair amount of protection from the sun in the summer months.
9. How much are Bernedoodle Puppies?
While this designer breed is not purebred, they have gained popularity and thus become rather sought after. When most buyers hear intelligent, playful, and good with children they are willing to pay top dollar.
You can expect to pay around $2,000 for a well-bred Bernedoodle. Bear in mind that this price will go up significantly if they have the highly desirable tricolor coat.
It’s important to find a reputable and recommended breeder. Be sure to ask them plenty of questions about the puppy itself and the parent dogs as this improves the odds that you will get a healthy puppy.
These designer breeds can definitely be pricey but it is still worth searching your local shelters to go the adoption route. Adoption fees usually range between $250 and $350. Whether you are adopting or buying from a breeder, be sure to meet your puppy beforehand to watch how they interact with other dogs. This will give you a good indication of their nature.
10. Diet Requirements
When it comes to your puppy‘s food requirement there is no set amount, it is very much dependent on the individual’s size, age, and amount of daily activity. Standard Bernedoodle pups will eat more than their Toy or Mini varieties for example.
And ensuring that your puppy food is rich in essential nutrients and vitamins is important so that they grow optimally. Older Bernedoodles on the other hand should be monitored when it comes to portions, so as to avoid weight gain. Overall, it’s best to consult your vet if you are unsure of the dietary needs of your Bernedoodle.
11. Exercise Requirements
This Poodle mix Bernese Mountain Dog pups are rather high energy which means they require a lot of physical and mental stimulation. When these dogs are puppies they require a lot of attention and playing time so be sure to invest in some interactive dog toys or doggy puzzles.
Some of the best activities you could do with your Bernedoodle include jogging, walking, swimming, hiking, and playing fetch.
Like most mixed breeds, Bernedoodles can vary in personality depending on their parent dogs. Some Bernedoodle puppies may require a whole lot less attention and be a lot less energetic. And 30 minutes to an hour of walking a day should suffice in this case. For the most part, Bernedoodles are easy-going and easily adaptable to different environments, and routines.
Can Bernedoodles Live in an Apartment?
These pups are pretty easy-going and adaptable, however, their size is a factor when it comes to housing a dog. If you want to make a predominantly indoor dog out of your Bernedoodle baby then it may be best to go for the smaller sized Bernedoodles such as the Mini or Toy varieties. Whereas standard Bernedoodles might thrive best in a yard where they can burn off excess energy.
Be sure to still get your Toy or Mini Bernedoodle active and outdoors to ensure they are their happiest and healthiest. A short 30-minute walk a day would be plenty which means these varieties are ideal for someone who doesn’t have much time for dedicated exercise. As long as they can be around their favorite humans most of the time, they are happy.
12. Pros of Owning a Bernedoodle
These wonderful-natured dogs have a long lifespan compared to their Bernese parent, thanks to the Poodle influence. They also suffer from very few health issues.
In addition, they are ideal as apartment dogs because their shedding is minimal and they are happy living indoors with their humans as long as they get sufficient walks. Not to mention they are hypoallergenic which is perfect for owners who suffer from the dreaded allergies.
13. Cons of Owning a Bernedoodle
There aren’t many drawbacks of owning a Bernedoodle but these are some of the less ideal sides to consider. They are very needy for your attention and love – this is hardly a negative for some. But for the working person who spends little time at home, it can become an issue if your doggo is unhappy or feels neglected.
They also have rather high maintenance grooming needs when it comes to their coat care specifically. This means as an owner you should learn the ropes of grooming or be prepared to pay grooming fees.
14. Male and Female Bernedoodles
There are more myths than facts when it comes to the differences between male and female puppies in general and this is no different when it comes to Bernedoodles. For the most part, there is very little difference between the two genders especially regarding important matters like health issues and lifespan.
The main difference between male and female dogs of any breed is that females tend to be slightly smaller than male dogs. However, this even varies within the same breed, especially because with mixed breeds
The puppy’s characteristics are very dependent on the two parent breeds. For the most part, your Bernedoodle pup’s traits will be the luck of the draw which will make your pooch all the more unique.
Final Thoughts on the Bernedoodle
Now that you know more about this happy-go-lucky, charming, and intelligent hound, you may be convinced of all things Bernedoodle. So whether you get a little more Poodle or a little more Bernese Mountain Dog in your Bernedoodle, you are guaranteed a loving, intelligent pooch.
If you’re looking for a dog for the whole family or you’re single looking for a loving companion, mixed breed pup with bounds of personality, then you can’t go wrong with becoming a Bernedoodle parent. These dogs are easy to please and their quirkiness will have you thoroughly entertained.
I covered all of the costs associated with writing this post on why do dogs shake when they sleep. However, it does contain affiliate links. That means if you click through on some of the links in this article and end up making a purchase I may receive a small commission. It won’t affect the price that you pay. Just wanted to let you know.