Originated through crossbreeding between a Poodle and Bernese Mountain Dog, this pup is as gentle and loving as they get. The Bernedoodle is perfect for both families with children as well as solo owners with active lifestyles looking for a loving and loyal animal companion. Incredibly playful and charming, these dogs are happiest when surrounded by the people they love.
While the Bernedoodle may have been around for longer than is officially understood as a result of accidental breeding, this dog wasn’t purposefully bred until 2003. The Poodle and Bernese Mountain Dog are claimed to have been brought together intentionally for the first time by the breeder Sherry Rupke. Due to the relatively new nature of this hybrid breed, the Bernedoodle is yet to be formally acknowledged by the American Kennel Club. However, this playful and loving pup is recognized by various other official platforms such as the American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Breed Registry, and the International Designer Canine Registry. While these dogs are available through breeders, the Berndedoodle can also be found in various shelters looking to be adopted by loving families.
When it comes to the Bernedoodle, it’s really the best of both worlds. With a Poodle and a Bernese Mountain Dog as parents, these dogs are incredibly capable. They rank high in intelligence and are fiercely loyal, with the tendency to be a goofball every now and then, guaranteed to leave you with a smile on your face. Due to the mix of genes, the temperament of the Bernedoodle may vary from one dog to the next, but on average, these are super energetic dogs that love playtime with their humans. This breed may be a little stubborn due to their Bernese Mountain Dog genes, which may cause friction when it comes to training. Also, they may be suspicious of new people and act defensively. However, an easy solution to these issues is early socialization, making sure your pup gets to spend adequate time familiarizing themselves with different humans, animals, and environments. The Bernedoodle needs at least moderate amounts of exercise best received through a long daily walk. However, this breed loves spending time indoors as well and will be more than happy to spend the day cuddling with their human.
The size of the Bernedoodle is dependent on the size of the Poodle parent, which can be of three standard sizes (Toy, Miniature, and Standard). Due to this, the Bernedoodle comes in three size variations, with the males being slightly taller than the females on average. The Tiny Bernedoodle has a height of around 12 to 17 inches and weighs anywhere around 10 to 24 pounds. The Miniature Bernedoodle has a height and weight of around 18 to 22 inches and 25 to 49 pounds, respectively, while the Standard Bernedoodle has a height of around 23 to 29 inches and a weight of about 70 to 90 pounds.
Due to the relatively new nature of this breed, health issues that Bernedoodle’s may be more prone to are not very well-documented. However, on average, this dog is considered to have better health than its purebred parents, who are likely to develop more diseases during their lifetime due to inbreeding, an issue not faced by mixed breeds like Bernedoodles. However, keep a lookout for issues such as elbow and hip dysplasia, as well as allergies and eye problems, to ensure that your dog is living its best and healthiest life.
Due to the highly intelligent nature of the Bernedoodle, they are fairly easy to train. These dogs will easily pick up on any tricks. However, they may just as easily pick up any undesirable habits as well, so it is recommended to keep up with training and incorporate a lot of positive reinforcement. Like most other dogs, early socialization is key in ensuring that your pup grows up to have a well-rounded personality and a friendly temperament. Expose them early on to other humans, animals, and environments. The Bernedoodle is not a very demanding dog when it comes to space and will mostly be content with moderate levels of exercise that helps them release any pent-up energy. The Toy and Miniature Bernedoodle are ideal apartment pets due to their small size and limited need for physical stimulation. A Standard Bernedoodle, due to its relatively larger size, thrives in a home with at least a small yard where they can run around. The Bernedoodle loves spending time with humans and so is not fit for kennel living and should not be left alone for long periods of time.
The Bernedoodle’s ideal diet depends on a host of factors such as size, age, and sex. It’s best to speak to a professional when coming up with a feeding plan for your Bernedoodle. This breed has a giant appetite and will gulp down any food placed in front of them, so free feeding is an option you should steer clear of.
The Bernedoodle comes in a variety of different coat types, depending on whether the pup inherited genes from the Poodle parent or the Bernese Mountain Dog parent. On average, the Bernedoodle has either a curly or a wavy coat that is better suited to people with allergies since these coats either do not shed at all or shed very little. On the other hand, the Bernedoodle may come with a straight coat which is less suited to those with allergies since this type of coat is prone to moderate shedding. The thicker their coat, the easier it is for this breed to thrive in either cooler or warmer temperatures since the thick coat offers a fair amount of protection from both cold and heat. The Bernedoodle comes in a range of colors, from black to white to brown and everything in between. They may also come in a combination of the three colors.
Bernedoodles with curlier coats are generally harder to groom because they need to be brushed regularly to prevent the fur from getting matted. Use brushing as a bonding experience with your dog since brushing is something that they enjoy. Brush your Bernedoodle’s teeth regularly and monitor their ears for any potential issues such as ear infections. It is also recommended to trim your Bernedoodle’s coat every few months to keep it easier to maintain.
A Bernedoodle puppy can cost anywhere between $2500 to $5000, depending on various factors such as age, sex, coat type, and color. The most expensive of the bunch are usually the Bernedoodles belonging to the tri-color variety.
While these adorable pups are definitely considered a “designer breed”, a breeder is by no means the only way to get a Bernedoodle. These dogs are available in shelters and through various rescue organizations. At the end of the day, it’s always better to adopt than shop! Here’s a list of organizations with Bernedoodle rescues (among other breeds):