Bernedoodle puppies are fun, active and very loyal. They grow to be medium to giant sized dogs, and do well in large active homes. The Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle mix combines two loving and lovable breeds. Today we take a look at the pros and cons of living with a full grown Bernedoodle dog. And answer those all important Bernedoodle puppy parenting questions!
- Where do Bernedoodles come from?
- The mini Bernedoodle
- Are Bernedoodles hypoallergenic?
- How big are Bernedoodles?
- Bernedoodle price
- Bernedoodle personality
- How long do Bernedoodles live?
- Bernedoodle puppies
Bernedoodle At A Glance
|Popularity:||Becoming more well known|
|Purpose||Companionship and sport|
|Temperament:||Social and energetic|
What Is A Bernedoodle?
Also known as a Bernese Mountain Doodle, or a Bernepoo, the Bernedoodle is a cross between a Poodle and a Bernese Mountain Dog. Most of these Doodles are a first generation cross between two purebred parents. This first generation mix is referred to as an F1 Bernedoodle.
The outcome of mixed breeding is not as predictable as mating two dogs of the same breed. As a result, your cute little Bernese Poodle mix could grow up to be a lot like his Poodle parent, or a lot more like his Mountain Dog ancestors!
However, the outcome of a mix between a Poodle and a Bernese is more predictable than the outcome of breeding from two F1 Doodles. Which is why most Mountain Doodle puppy buyers opt for the F1 cross.
History and Original Purpose of the Bernedoodle
Because deliberate mixed breeding is a fairly new practice, the Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle mix is a fresh addition to the dog world. Luckily, we are able to learn more about Bernedoodles and what to expect by taking a look at the histories of its purebred parents.
Origins of the Poodle
Today, the Poodle is the national dog of France. But did you know it was originally bred in Germany nearly 400 years ago? Back then, the Poodle was best known for its skills in duck hunting! In fact, that’s where the Poodle’s famous haircut came from. Used mostly as show dogs today, the Poodle’s flamboyant coat style originally had a very practical purpose. The poms on a Poodle’s head, tail, chest, and legs were meant to help them swim well. In addition, they would also help protect the more sensitive parts of the Poodle’s body while hunting in freezing waters.
It wasn’t long before the Poodle became known for more than just good hunting skills. Soon, they were popular in circuses. But it wasn’t just beauty that earned this pooch a spot in the limelight! Namely, the Poodle is incredibly intelligent and quick to pick up tricks, so was the perfect addition to theatrical acts. It’s no surprise that the Poodle eventually became popular with noblemen thanks to its extravagant coat and graceful gait.
Bernese Mountain Dog History
The Bernese Mountain Dog comes from Switzerland, where it was once common to find them roaming the Swiss Alps. For this reason, you’ll occasionally hear the Bernedoodle referred to as the Swiss Doodle.
Formerly known by locals as the Dürrbachhund, after the small town of Dürrbach from which they originated, the Bernese Mountain Dog was initially used as a working dog. For instance, they were used to pull heavy loads and were widely used to help with farming tasks before industrial machinery became commonplace.
Mountain Doodle origins
Today, both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog are incredibly popular family pets, renowned for their intelligence, friendly nature, and work ethic. All in all, with two histories as rich as the Poodle’s and the Bernese Mountain Dog’s, it’s easy to see why a mixed offspring would be so appealing.
Bernedoodle Grooming & Coat
It’s always going to be difficult to know exactly what a mixed breed puppy will look like. For instance, they could inherit a wide range of physical traits from either one of their purebred parents. And it will differ depending upon whether it’s a first generation mix, or a later stage mix like the F1b Bernedoodle.
In this case, the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog look as different as can be. So, things like height, weight, color, and texture are going to vary depending on what parent the puppy takes after most. To help identify some of the possible traits your Mountain Doodle could inherit, we’ll look at the common physical traits of the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog.
The Standard Poodle has a curly coat that comes in three standard colors: apricot, black, and brown. The Bernese Mountain Dog is known for its stunning, tri-colored coat that is primarily black, tan, and white. Your puppy could inherit any of these gorgeous color combinations. So in theory, you can have black Bernedoodles, the traditional tri color Bernedoodle, black and white Bernedoodles, and even golden Bernedoodles. In practice, most are black and white, or tricolor.
Merle is a pretty and sought after dappled color, but it is not a color present in either the Poodle breed or the Bernese Mountain Dog. So be aware that if you see merle Bernedoodle puppies advertised, the litter is not a first generation cross. The same applies if you see Australian Bernedoodles for sale. These are a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and an Australian Labradoodle.
Do Bernedoodles shed?
Poodles do not shed, or at least any hair that comes loose remains trapped within the Poodle’s coat. This can be helpful for people that are sensitive to the allergen that all dogs carry. The Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle mix on the other hand, has a longer coat that sheds profusely and requires consistent brushing and grooming. Generally, the looser the curls, the more the dog sheds. And as Doodles have looser curls than Poodles, it’s likely that your Bernedoodle will shed, even if it’s just slightly.
Is the Bernedoodle Hypoallergenic?
To be fair, no dog is truly and absolutely hypoallergenic, it’s simply that low shedding dogs can sometimes be tolerated by people with low levels of allergy. Remember, a Doodle with tighter curls will shed less than one with very loose curls. If you suffer from allergies, its a good idea to spend some time around Bernedoodles before you bring one into your home, to make sure that your allergies aren’t triggered by the dog.
Bernedoodle Size – How Big Do Bernedoodles Get?
Bernedoodle weight and height will depend on which size of Poodle is involved. And like Poodles, Bernedoodles come in three different sizes:
- The standard Bernedoodle
- The miniature Bernedoodle
- The toy Bernedoodle
The Poodle Bernese Mountain Dog mix will usually combine the largest Poodle type, resulting in a full size Bernedoodle. But not always!
The Standard Bernedoodle
The Standard Poodle weighs in at approximately 40-70 pounds. And stands at least 15 inches tall, most are taller. A large breed, the Bernese Mountain Dog is even taller at a towereing 27 inches and weighs in at 70-115 pounds!
The full grown standard Bernedoodle puppy will reach a height and weight that lies anywhere between its parents and it is difficult to predict which end of the range that will be. This means that an adult Bernedoodle could reach up to 27 inches in height and weighs a hefty 70lb to 80lbs. Possibly even more! In either case you are looking at a big dog!
The Miniature Bernedoodle
A Miniature Poodle crossed with a Bernese Mountain Dog will result in a Mini Bernedoodle. Mini bernedoodle breeders are aiming for a much smaller dog and the full grown mini Bernedoodle adult will probably weigh in at less than 40lbs, but there is plenty of room for surprises with one parent being so large. This is the Bernese Mountain Poodle mix to go for if you are hoping for a medium Bernedoodle. But remember, there are no guarantees.
The Micro Bernedoodle
A Toy Poodle crossed with a Bernese Mountain Dog will give you the micro Bernedoodle, also known as the toy Bernedoodle, or the tiny Bernedoodle. You may also see teacup Bernedoodles, or teacup mini bernedoodles advertised for sale. Be cautious about any puppy described as a teacup dog, because extreme miniaturization is commonly associated with health risks, including weak and sickly puppies that may not survive.
How Much Will A Bernedoodle Cost?
You can expect to pay from $3000 to $5000 for a Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle mix puppy. The price tends to go up as the size goes down! So Mini Bernedoodles are likely to be at the upper end of that range.
Remember that the initial price you pay is just the start. You’ll need pet health insurance to protect you against unexpected veterinary bills, and one of the larger Doodles will eat their way through a substantial amount of food each month.
As previously mentioned, crossbreeding comes with its share of controversy. One of the issues is the inability to predict with certainty the type of temperament your crossbreed could inherit from its purebred parents. In this case, both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog share a few of the same behavioral traits that will more than likely be passed on to their puppy. For example, both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog are intelligent breeds who are very alert and friendly.
Do Bernedoodles Make Good Family Pets?
Both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog are intelligent breeds who enjoy being around their family members and do well with children, so we can expect the our Doodle to behave similarly.
However, like any large dog, they need to be well trained to ensure that they are safe and good company both at home and while visiting friends and family. The Poodle, for example, makes a wonderful student who is eager to please and enjoys learning new tricks. They are also incredibly active and will need a steady amount of exercise and play.
Despite their size, Bernese Mountain Dogs are more docile than Poodles. For instance, they enjoy lounging around the house or resting in a nice, cozy spot. However, that’s not to say the Bernese Mountain Dog won’t enjoy a nice run in the yard. They also make great jogging or hiking partners. Remember, this dog was once a working breed, and is used to walking long distances.
Odds are your Mountain Dog Poodle mix will also be a large, active crossbreed who will do best in homes with yards rather than in smaller apartments. But if you don’t mind a bit of shedding and if you have the ability to train and exercise your dog on a consistent basis, then this just might be the perfect crossbreed for you!
Training and Exercising your Bernedoodle
Bernedoodles are intelligent dogs with energetic personalities. They need regular training sessions using only positive reinforcement techniques. It’s important not to come into conflict with such a large dog.
They love spending time outdoors, but might not tolerate heat well so keep an eye on the weather.
Fun Facts about the Bernedoodle
Brooklyn Nets star D’Angelo Russell is a big fan of this cuddly mixed breed. He famously adopted two adorable Bernedoodle pups named Molly and Max!
Bernese Mountain Doodle Care
We recommend brushing your Mountain Doodle with a wire brush to collect dead hair at least once a week. Other than that, both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog only require occasional bathing, so you can count on the same for your pup.
They will also need weekly ear checks and cleaning to avoid infection caused by waxy build-up and moisture. In addition, we recommend regularly trimming your Doodle’s nails to avoid splitting and cracking. This can result in infection and pain.
Bernese Mountain Dog Poodle Mix Health
A mix breed dog is also called a “hybrid”, “cross” or a “designer dog.” One of the reasons that purebred dogs are so popular is because they have been bred for generations to ensure that things like size, temperament, and physical characteristics remain consistent. When crossbreeding a dog between two purebred parents, those above traits, along with many others, may vary from one puppy to another, especially if the parent breeds are very different. However, that doesn’t mean purebred dogs are perfect.
Purebred vs Mutts
As many of us in the dog-loving community are aware, purebred dogs have become increasingly plagued by certain health issues. Most of these are caused by generations of over-breeding in progressively smaller gene pools. Those who support crossbreeding claim the practice could be a solution to such health issues.
Unfortunately, Bernedoodles can be prone to epilepsy, hypoglycemia, Addison’s Disease, progressive retinal atrophy, thyroid issues, hip dysplasia, and bloat. Mostly, they are often predisposed to hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia, bloat, and mast cell tumor.
Early health screening for your puppy is an option we like to recommend. This can help to prevent or prepare for certain health problems you may end up encountering in the future.
The average lifespan for a Poodle is 12 years. The Bernese Mountain Dog has a shorter average lifespan of 8.4 years. Therefore, provided both parent dogs are healthy, you can expect your Doodle to live an average of about 10 years. However, it is still unclear if crossbreeding is a true solution to the generational health problems that have been problematic for purebred dogs. There are a number of factors that can influence Bernedoodle life expectancy, including the health issues the purebred parents are predisposed to.
Rescuing a Bernedoodle
If you have your sights set on a Bernedoodle adoption from a local shelter or a Bernedoodle rescue is a great idea, remember that there is a chance you may not find the crossbreed right away. So, don’t set yourself up for disappointment! First, try calling your local shelters and asking to be notified when a Bernese Mountain Dog mix arrives.
Also, be sure to ask about health screening options, temperament issues, and any backstory the shelter may have on your Doodle, such as where they came from and how they wound up there. To get started, take a look at our list of rescue agencies to see if there’s one in your area. However, if you prefer the fun and excitement of raising a puppy yourself, make sure you do your research and find a reputable breeder.
Finding a Bernedoodle Puppy
Finding a puppy from a reliable source is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and your potential dog. First of all, remember that not all breeders are responsible. Be sure to ask plenty of questions regarding temperamental and health issues with previous litters or the parents of your puppy.
Secondly, reputable breeders should be able to deliver certificates that prove their dogs have been screened for health and temperamental issues, so don’t be shy about asking for those.
Bernedoodle Puppy Price
If you plan on going to a breeder to purchase your puppy, expect to spend over $1000. This price will vary depending on the breeder and the purebred parents. For example, if the breeder is well known and often produces high-quality show dogs, prepare to pay more. If you are lucky, you may be able to find a Bernedoodle available for adoption from a shelter or rescue organization.
Keep in mind that although shelters are a fraction of the price of breeders, there will be adoption fees that can run anywhere from $50 to $100. On the flip side, shelters will often cover the initial veterinary fees, ensuring your puppy is healthy, happy, and ready to come home!
Raising a Bernedoodle Puppy
There are some great guides to help you with all aspects of puppy care and training. You’ll find them listed on our puppy care page. We have also put together a useful list of products and accessories that you’ll need before welcoming a large Mountain Doodle into your home.
Products and Accessories
- Best Cooling Pads for Dogs
- Shampoos for Poodles
- Best Dog Ear Cleaner
- Poodle Gifts
Pros And Cons of Getting A Bernedoodle
- Tendency to overheat
- Weight and height is unpredictable
- Predisposed to many health ailments
- Fun and energetic
- Great with kids and large families
- Easy to train
Comparing the Bernedoodle with Other Breeds
- The Goldendoodle
- The Aussiedoodle
- The Sheepadoodle
- Mini Bernese Mountain Dog
- Labernese – The Bernese Mountain Dog Lab Mix
- Bolognese Poodle Mix
- The Mini Bernedoodle
- Newfypoo Vs Bernedoodle
Also, take a look at other Poodle mixes here.
- The Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Western Australia
- Rescue Me! Bernese Mountain Dog
- Pet Rescue | Poodle Cross Rescue
Good luck! We hope your Doodle brings you lots of joy for years to come. If you already own a Bernedoodle, let us know in the comments how you found one and what your experience has been.
References and Resources
- Adams, VJ, et al. 2010. “Methods and mortality results of a health survey of purebred dogs in the UK.” Journal of Small Animal Practice.
- Klopfenstein, M, et al. 2016. “Life expectancy and causes of death in Bernese mountain dogs in Switzerland.” BMC Veterinary Research.
- Mattinson, P. 2018. “Purebred Vs Mutt-Common Objections to Mixed Breed Dogs.” The Labrador Site.
- Abadie, J, et al. 2009. “Epidemoilogy, Pathology, and Genetics of Histiocytic Sarcoma in the Bernese Mountain Dog Breed.” Journal of Heredity, Volume 100.
- Turcsan, B, et al. 2017. “Owner Perceived Differences Between Mixed-Breed and Purebred Dogs.” PLOS One.
- Howell, TJ, et al. 2015. “Puppy Parties and Beyond: the role of early age socialization practices on adult dog behavior.” Dove Medical Press.
- Santoro, D and Marsella, R. 2002. “Genetic aspects of labrador retriever myopathy.” Research in Veterinary Science.
- Oberbauer, AM, et al. 2017. “Long-term genetic selection reduced prevalence of hip and elbow dysplasia in 60 dog breeds.” PLOS one.
- Licht, BG, et al. 2007. “Clinical characteristics and mode of inheritance of familial focal seizures in Standard Poodles.” Journal of the American Veterinary Association.
- Bellumori, TP, et al. 2013. “Prevalence of inherited disorders among mixed-breed and purebred dogs: 27254 cases (1995-2010).” Journal of the American Veterinary Association.
- Sutter, NB and Ostrander, EA. 2004. “Dog Star Rising: The Canine Genetic System.” Nature Reviews Genetics, Volume 5.
- Irion, DN et al. 2003. “Analysis of Genetic Variation in 28 Dog Breed Populations With 100 Microsatellite Markers.” Journal of Heredity.
- Beuchat, C. 2014. “The Myth of Hybrid Vigor in Dogs.” Institute of Canine Biology.