Bernedoodles are a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle.
They’re usually a friendly, energetic and outgoing dog breed that can display traits inherited from both their Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle parent.
Bernedoodles can come in three different sizes depending on the size of the Poodle parent bred with the Bernese Mountain Dog.
The Sherry Rupke of Swissridge Kennels are thought to be the initial breeders of this particular Doodle variety.
In this article, we’re going to take a close look at the Bernedoodle, examining Bernedoodle size, Bernedoodle temperament, Bernedoodle shedding and Bernedoodle exercise needs.
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What is a Bernedoodle?
A Bernedoodle is a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle. They can also go by the name Bernese Mountain Poo.
Like we mentioned above, Sherry Rupke of Swissridge Kennels are often credited with having created this unique Doodle mix in 2003.
You can get a F1 Bernedoodle – a first generation mix between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle. A F1B is a cross between a Bernedoodle and a Poodle (25% Bernese Mountain Dog, Poodle 75%).
While the Bernese Mountain Dog and the Poodle are breeds recognised by the American Kennel Club, the AKC haven’t granted the Bernedoodle status.
The Bernedoodle has been granted recognition by the following organizations: American Canine Hybrid Club, Dog Registry of America and International Designer Canine Registry.
What size is a Bernedoodle?
The Bernedoodle can come in three different sizes: standard, miniature and toy.
The size of the Bernedoodle will depend on whether a Bernese Mountain Dog is bred with a standard, miniature or toy Poodle.
Standard Bernedoodles will range from 23 to 29 inches tall and 70 to 90 pounds in weight, miniature Bernedoodles can vary from 18 to 22 inches tall and 25 to 49 pounds in weight as well as 12 to 17 inches tall and 10 to 24 pounds in weight.
We asked Dennis (@dennis.b.doodle) about his size.
Dennis is what you would consider a standard Bernedoodle, although he is definitely on the lower end of the scale in terms of size and weight. He will mature at approximately 55lbs and will be about 23-24 inches in height at the shoulder.
Bernedoodles will inherit physical traits from both the Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle parent. It’s impossible to predict a Bernedoodle puppy’s appearance given there’s the influence of two different breeds in their genetic makeup. Having said, we can look at some of the possible coat colors of Bernedoodles, which can range from black and white, grey and white, brown and white and white. They can also have a tricolor coat. Bernedoodles will usually have brown eyes, triangular-shaped ears and a black nose.
Eevee (@eeveethebernedoodle) gave us an insight into Bernedoodle appearance.
Eevee is a big teddy bear! She’s now one year old and weight 75lbs! She used to be pretty fluffy and her coat was mostly wavy but when she lost her baby coat it changed to more curly hair! She’s still the perfect mix of curly Poodle hair (doesn’t shed and hypoallergenic) and fluffy Bernese hair! But some Bernedoodles will end up more curly than others and some will have a more wavy coat! Eevee kept her colouring with time but I would say that her brown definitely faded a little bit with her coat changing! So again some Bernedoodles will keep their marking while growing up as some other might fade a little!
Kenzie (@kenziedood) gave us a further insight into Bernedoodle appearance.
Bernedoodles are beautiful, striking dogs, and they can really vary in their coloring as well as their coat. They will often have Bernese coloring, black, brown and white- but this can present differently in different pups even from the same litter. You can also switch up their appearance depending on how you get them groomed.
Bernedoodles tend to be friendly, intelligent, playful and outgoing dogs that like be around other people and other dogs.
It’s important to note that just like with Bernedoodle appearance, every Bernedoodle may have a slightly different personality depending on the temperament traits that they inherit from the Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle parent.
They’re usually quite intelligent dogs that have a tenacious personality, sometimes embodying the hard-working trait often associated with mountain dog breeds.
Bernedoodles can make loyal dogs that become very attached to their pet parents, proving to be an excellent potential candidate for a family pet.
In your search for your Bernedoodle breeder, it’s important to locate one that is breeding to create a well-rounded Bernedoodle of sound temperament rather than ones that are breeding for a unique color or size.
We asked Dennis’ (@dennis.b.doodle) parents to shed some light on the personality of their Bernedoodle.
Temperament has a large genetic component. A dog of any breed is only going to be as sound as the parents. There are two common types of Bernedoodle temperament: reserved/skittish and low confidence, and very happy, bouncy, stable and tolerant. Bernese, in particular, come in both those flavors so it is important to know the breeder is breeding the best dogs possible. Dennis’ breeder, Moonstruck Bernedoodles, selects dogs in their program based on temperament and health scores and THEN colour and coat.
Do Bernedoodles suffer from separation anxiety?
Separation anxiety is a chronic canine disorder that can affect any dog irrespective of breed, mix or background. We spoke to a dog separation anxiety expert to learn more about this condition. You can read our in-depth chat about the issue here. Separation anxiety usually occurs when a dog is left at home alone. However, some dogs can display signs of separation anxiety as soon as you put on your shoes or show some tell-tell signs that your departure is imminent. Although some dogs can suffer in silence, many dogs will display outward symptoms that they’re struggling with this chronic disorder. The symptoms include incessant barking, howling or whining, destructive chewing or digging, relentless pacing or in some extreme cases defecting or urinating inside the home.
Bernedoodles, just like any other type of dog, can suffer with separation anxiety. Naturally, there will be some Bernedoodle owners that will never encounter this issue, but that’s not to say that some members of this mix breed won’t struggle with this issue.
Jamie, who is the mom of Dennis (@dennis.b.doodle), gave us her view on Bernedoodle separation anxiety.
Separation anxiety also has a strong genetic component as well as a husbandry component. Sound tempered parents that are not anxious should not produce anxious puppies. That said under the right circumstances a great dog can learn to be anxious based on experiences. Dennis doesn’t suffer from separation anxiety. He is happy to sleep in his crate, or work on a Kong filled with frozen yogourt while we are away for a few hours.
Do Bernedoodles make great family pets?
Bernedoodles can make excellent family pets provided that they’re socialized properly from a young age. It’s a good idea to expose your Bernedoodle puppy to different people, dogs and situations as much as possible provided you do so in a responsible way. You may prefer to hire the services of a dog trainer to help guide you socialize your Bernedoodle dog.
We put the question of whether Bernedoodles are a good choice for family pets to two of our Bernedoodle owners.
Based on her experience with Dennis (@dennis.b.doodle), Jamie said:
Yes! Overall, they are spectacular family dogs, and are usually very easy-going and patient with children. Dennis loves to play with our young nieces and nephew.
Kenzie’s mom Kelly (@kenziedood) added:
Bernedoodles are very cuddly and great with people including kids. They love to be close to you and are very loyal. They are even-tempered and not aggressive.
Are Bernedoodles smart?
Bernedoodles tend to be pretty smart dogs. As you’ll probably know, Poodles are considered the second smartest dogs in the world behind the Border Collie. The Intelligence of Dogs ranks the Bernese Mountain Dog at number 27 just below the supremely smart Belgian Malinois breed. So, if you decide the Bernedoodle is the right Doodle mix for you, the odds are you’ll have a dog with a pretty good IQ on your hands. Some Bernedoodles can display a stubborn streak, which is why consistent training is required from a young age.
Are Bernedoodle easy to train?
So we know that Bernedoodles are likely to be pretty smart dogs. Bernedoodle training can be quite smooth provided you start at a young age and show patience. It’s generally a good idea to train your Bernedoodle from a young age to lay down the fundamental ground-rules and build from that foundation.
Kenzie (@kenziedood) has been quick to learn new commands and tricks.
Bernedoodles are very smart and can quickly pick up on new tricks as well as remember their previous training. They are very food motivated so that makes positive reinforcement training really effective. We love Zak George’s videos on YouTube for training tips.
How much exercise do Bernedoodles need?
Bernedoodles will have moderate to high exercise needs given both Bernese Mountain Dogs and Poodles are pretty active breeds.
As a smart breed that like to stretch their legs, it’s important that you give a Bernedoodle sufficient exercise or mental stimulation every day to meet their needs.
Kenzie (@kenziedood) gets around three walks a day.
Bernedoodles love long walks and have quick bursts of energy- but also value a good long nap. Like any dog, they appreciate exercise and it helps them behave better throughout the day. We give our dog about 3 walks a day, as well as fetch and training sessions (which exercise her mind) throughout the day.
Do Bernedoodles get along with other dogs?
With the right socialization and training, most dogs can be social with other canines. However, responsible dog owners shouldn’t force interactions. There’s no reason your dog has to say hello to every dog it passes. It’s good practice to take part in some socialization classes or training from a young age.
This is a point emphasised by Eevee’s mom (@eeveethebernedoodle).
I think this really depends on the personality of your dog and the way you raise them. Eevee use to be a little scared of dogs growing up but with time she got use to have dogs around her and now she’s obsessed by any kind of dogs! She wants to be friend with all of them! Bernedoodles are generally friendly and also really chill so I would say they do get along with other dogs as long as you get them use to them young and introduce good manners around other dogs!
Are Bernedoodles hypoallergenic?
Bernedoodles, and Doodles in general, are much loved for their hypoallergenic qualities. The American Kennel Club write that there’s no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog breed. However, the AKC do put forward a number of breeds that are more hypoallergenic than other types of dogs. The Poodle is one of the breeds on their 19-dog list. The influence of the Poodle genes means that it’s likely a Bernedoodle will have some hypoallergenic qualities. It’s important to remember that each Bernedoodle is different and there’s no guarantee they’ll be highly hypoallergenic.
Dennis’ mom Jamie (@dennis.b.doodle) explained that this can cary with every Bernedoodle you meet.
Doodles of various mixes are allergy friendly and most people with allergies will not react to them. However, it is all on an individual basis as to how each individual react to with an individual dog.
Do Bernedoodles shed?
Bernedoodles are relatively low-shedding dogs thanks to the influence of the Poodle parent. However, you should keep in mind that the Bernese Mountain Dog is a breed that does shed. So Bernedoodles can barely shed, shed a little or shed moderately depending on the genes that they inherit from each parent.
Kenzie (@kenziedood) offered some advice for pet lovers looking for a low-shedding Bernedoodle.
It will depend on their coat, but probably not much if at all. If no shedding is important to you- you can look for an F1B Bernedoodle, meaning they are 75% poodle. The only time we’ve even seen a loose hair from our Bernedoodle is when she was given a bath.
Do Bernedoodles need regular grooming?
While you may save time cleaning dog hair around your home thanks to the Bernedoodle’s low-shedding coat, you’ll have to dedicate some of your time to grooming your Bernedoodle.
This mix require a daily brushing to ensure their hair doesn’t become matted or tangled. Bernedoodles will need a trim every few months to keep their curly hair in check.
Eevee’s mom (@eeveethebernedoodle) provided us with an insight into their grooming routine.
Eevee has only had two full grooms so far. The groomers recommended us to wait until she lost her baby coat until a full groom! We took her for a face and paw trim when she was 6 months but we now try to trim her face and paws ourself when her hair gets too long (I would definitely recommend to get your puppy use to scissors and brush really young). At 9 months we took her for her first full groom! Almost 4 hours and $160 later, she was a new dog! If you get a Bernedoodle (or any doodle dog) you have to be ready to brush them often to avoid mats and pay for pricey groom but it’s so worth not having hair all over you and the house! I would say that Bernedoodles need a full groom every season (depends on how short you want their coat and how often you keep up with home brushing and trimming).
Do Bernedoodles have any health problems?
There’s a perception that mixed breeds are healthier dogs. While some mixed breeds can have less health issues, they can still be prone to some problems. These could include:
• Elbow Dysplasia
• Sebaceous Adenitis
• Hip Dysplasia
We asked Vicky about whether Eevee (@eeveethebernedoodle) has experienced any health issues.
The only “health” problem that Eevee have is that she’s intolerant to chicken (and most likely to all bird meat). We found out that a lot of Bernedoodles have the same issue (and that also Bernese Mountain Dogs can have really sensitive stomach) but other then that she’s a healthy happy dog! I recommend you really do your research before getting a Bernedoodle to make sure the breeder have all their health certificates for hip issues because Bernese Mountain Dogs and Poodles are big dogs and can often have hip and back issue growing up.
Are Bernedoodles fussy eaters?
Some Bernedoodles can be prone to fussiness at mealtime, but other Bernedoodles will quickly gobble down their food. It all depends on the individual dog.
For instance, my Alaskan Klee Kai have traditionally been very fussy until I switched them onto Nom Nom and Butternut Box. I’ve reviewed the best dog food delivery companies in the USA and the best dog food delivery companies in the UK.
Alternatively, if you prefer feeding your Bernedoodle dry food such as kibble, you can still find some great options here. Other pet parents may prefer to check out the leading options in the raw dog food market.
Dennis (@dennis.b.doodle) isn’t a picky eater, as his mum Jamie explains to us.
Fussy eating is a created behavior. It is very rare that a lean dog that is exercised properly and fed a proper amount of food for the individual dog’s metabolism will be fussy. This applies to ALL breeds. Dogs that are overfed and have a BMI that is too high will self regulate and humans view this as “fussy”. Bernese are known for their unstoppable appetite and many, many Bernese are quite overweight. Their doodles can inherit this appetite. But they also have a Poodle component and they are well known to self regulate and become disinterested in food once their BMI gets too high, so it can go either way. You can control “fussy” eating by maintaining an appropriate BMI for your dog.
Bernedoodles are often dubbed a designer breed, just like other types of Doodle breeds. Based upon our research, Bernedoodles can cost between $3,000 and $4,000.
Kenzie’s mum (@kenziedood) believes Bernedoodles a worth the investment.
Bernedoodles are a “designer” breed, it’s rare that you’d find one at a rescue, and more likely you’d have to get it from a breeder. However they are worth it! Our is from Crockett Doodles.
Are Bernedoodles expensive?
Aside from the initial cost of Bernedoodles, you’ll need to think about the monthly costs of owning your cross breed.
These can range from pet food, pet insurance, grooming, trips to the vet and much more. As you’ll now know, Bernedoodles require regular grooming, which can be quite expensive if you go to a professional groomer. You can check out the best pet insurance options in the USA and the UK.
Would you recommend Bernedoodles to first-time owners?
If you’re a first-time dog owner and you’re considering a Bernedoodle as your canine companion, you’re probably wondering whether this Doodle mix will be a good fit for a novice owner.
Vicky offered the following advice based upon her experience with Eevee (@eeveethebernedoodle).
Our Bernedoodle was our first dog to me and my boyfriend! (We were both raised with dogs in our family so we are use to having dogs around) Eevee is so sweet and really chill! We live in the city in a small apartment and she’s super happy! If you raise you dog well and train them good Bernedoodles can be great first time dog owner! Eevee love to cuddle! Younger she wouldn’t cuddle much with us but now she always has to be on top of us; she’s the biggest lap dog! But because she gets hot easily she usually don’t cuddle for too long (which is good because she’s getting really heavy)
Bernedoodle to follow on Instagram
We often find that Instagram can be an excellent place to learn more about a dog breed. Usually pet parents are more than forthcoming with information about their dogs.
Here are three Bernedoodle accounts to check out on Instagram.
• Eevee (@eeveethebernedoodle)
• Dennis (@dennis.b.doodle)
• Kenzie (@kenziedood)
What are the pros and cons of Bernedoodles?
Eevee/Vicky: Bernedoodles are generally really chill and sweet with the goofy side of them! Eevee is the sweetest with kids and small dogs. She doesn’t require much exercise and she’s pretty lazy. Bernedoodle don’t shed (or minimum shedding depends on the % of poodle they have in them) and are usually hypoallergenic. They are great family dog! (But again always depends on the personality and the way you raise them)
Dennis/Jamie: A good Bernedoodle will have an easy-going, happy disposition and rarely show aggressive behaviors that you see more naturally in breeds like German Shepherds or Mastiffs or Terriers. They are super cute, come in a variety of sizes and colours, and are low-no shed/allergy friendly.
Kenzie/Kelly: They come in different sizes (Bernedoodle and Minibernedoodle) meaning you can select a weight range for them. They are fantastic family dogs, very adorable and loving. They are usually hypoallergenic, love the water and are very smart.
Eevee/Vicky: For some their weight could be an issue; standard Bernedoodles can weight from 50-100lbs! The grooming could be for some a big con; lots of brushing (I would say every other day or at least three times a week) and keeping up with grooming appointments (that can be sometime pricey). If your Bernedoodle gets more of the Poodle personality, they sometimes can be a little stubborn (Eevee is definitely stubborn and a little sassy).
Dennis/Jamie: Grooming is expensive and time consuming and inconvenient. They can be extremely stubborn and while they are easy to teach using food and motivational methods, they will also ignore you if it suits them.
Kenzie/Kelly: Cons are if you’re highly allergic, you cannot guarantee that they will be hypoallergenic. You also have to get them groomed consistently. Like any dog, they can also be stubborn and anxious.
We’ve reached the end of our feature on Bernedoodles.
They’re a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle. The result is standard, miniature or toy Bernedoodle.
This Doodle mix can make great family pets thanks to their outgoing personalities.
Bernedoodles are usually hypoallergenic but this can vary between each member of the cross breed.
They can sometimes have a sensitive stomach but Bernedoodles tend to be pretty healthy dogs.