About the Saint Bernard
The Saint Bernard, also known as the Alpine Mastiff, is a native of Switzerland. In hopes of keeping the rescue reputation of this breed, the Bernadine Monks have raised Saint Bernards for rescue and draft work since the 1600s.
Today the Saint Bernard is used mainly as a companion dog.
The Saint Bernard is a very loving and kind dog who is excellent with families. They love children and their leisurely manner and patience makes them a perfect match. They are dedicated to their family and will do whatever is needed to please them. They are very intelligent and moderately easy to train though the training must be started young. They are not territorial but will protect their family when needed. Early socialization is key, though they do get along with other animals.
Saint Bernards have a huge head with wrinkles above the eyes that are more visible when the dog is alert. Their muzzle is short and wide showing the flews on the lower jaw. They have a black nose with wide nostrils and black lips. Their ears are round and triangular shaped which show off their medium sized, dark brown eyes. Their tail is very strong, lengthy and heavy and has a slight curve at the end. They have very powerful legs that are straight with wide paws and high set toes. These dogs come in two varieties, short coat and long coat. Short coat Saints have short, smooth hair while long coats have rougher, lengthier coats that may be wavy in appearance. The traditional colors are white with red, red with white, or brindle with white patches. White markings are also on the chest, feet, tail, nose, collar and forehead.
The Saint Bernard is prone to elbow and hip dysplasia as well as heart problems, skin problems, bloat and eye problems.
These lovable dogs can live successfully in an apartment though daily exercise is required. Like other big dogs with flews, they can drool and be messy eaters.