Characteristics and personality of the San Bernardo dog breed


The San Bernardo is the noble giant of dogs. His fame in helping people lost in the high Alps is very real and well deserved. Some of these dogs saved many people at those heights during snowstorms.

This breed descends from the mastiffs of the Roman legions, or possibly the Tibetan Mastiff, these having been linked to the dogs that inhabited the region of Switzerland where the breed was established. In the middle of the eleventh century it is possible that the type or race was already defined, being used on farms in the valleys.

The current name is received from the San Bernardo hospice in the Swiss Alps where since the mid-seventeenth century he was raised for the purpose of guiding monks in the snow and rescuing travelers during storms. It is estimated that more than 2,500 people were saved by these dogs, one of the dogs, Barry, is credited with rescuing forty people.

At the beginning of the 19th century, the monks of the hospice to the lineage of the Saint Bernard added him from Newfoundland to provide him with even greater size and vitality. It was from this crossroads where the St. Bernard of long hair emerged. This variety had problems with the ice in the hair and the monks did not keep it, giving the puppies to people who lived in the valleys at a lower height.

In 1882 the first San Bernardo club in the United Kingdom already had competitions, we understand that it was established in 1881 and ten years later he had already won championship cups. In 1884 the Swiss club was established for this breed. In the International Cinological Congress of 1887, in Zurich, a standard for the race was drawn, the biggest influence in this standard being that of the Swiss club.

At the beginning of the 20th century, in the Kendon Bowdon, the three most notable lineages of the United Kingdom were combined and some of the mastiff was added, some size was lost in exchange for considerably improving the hips. Sympathetic that a century earlier it had been St. Bernard, in the United Kingdom, who helped the mastiff.

For those people who have the space in their home to keep one of these giants, the San Bernardo is the perfect pet. An extremely noble and good dog towards the children of the house, child abuse cannot be allowed, it is also noble with the other pets. Its arrangement allows it to adapt to life in an apartment, but size is something to consider. It does very well in a house with fenced yard.

Remember that eating this dog's food can be an income.

By his way of being ensaliva the whole house. Also snore.

The exercise should be moderate, taking him out for a walk every day. At least once a week you should be taken to walk a greater distance (without exhausting it and let the dog determine) and allow you to run freely (loose or with a long leash) if the dog so desires.

A daily hairstyle is enough to remove loose hair.

· Hip dysplasia.
· Heart problems.
· Gastric dilatation.

The name of San Bernardo, with its translations into other languages, was officially given to this breed of dogs in 1880. It had already been called before, at least since 1833, by this name but it was also called by other names.

St. Bernard in English is known as “St. Bernard ”, also called“ Alpine Mastiff ”,“ Hospice Dog ”and“ Sacred Dog ”.

In Portuguese it is called "Sгo Bernardo".

Relation of canine federations that recognize this breed. Useful references to estimate the popularity of this breed, the effort made to keep it defined, get advice before acquiring a purebred puppy, and watch this breed compete.

American Kennel Club: AKC (United States).

United Kennel Club: UKC (United States).

The Kennel Club: KC (Great Britain).

Canadian Kennel Club: CKC (Canada).

Federation Cynologique Internationale: FCI (Belgium, with federations affiliated in practically all over the world).


The measures vary among the different canine federations in the world. We present relative figures that give an idea of ​​the size and appearance of the breed. If you want to exhibit your dog, check the federation measures where you want to compete.

The San Bernardo is a giant and massive dog. Its constitution is at least double. Its shape is square, it is as tall as it is long. This breed was created to work in the high snow, requiring that its limbs be proportional to its height.

Of benevolent, dignified and intelligent expression.

Big, massive, rounded.

Dark, medium size. Attentive but not penetrating.

The "stop", front of the head under the forehead, is moderate.

Placed at eye level. Medium size It keeps them down, glued to the cheeks.

Short. The truffle, or nose, black.

Abundant inner mantle. Outer mantle, two types:

Relatively short, dense, smooth, glued to the body, without being rough to the touch. On the back of the body the hair can be slightly waved. It feels denser on the thighs. At the base of the tail the hair is dense and longer, being shorter towards the tip.

Medium in length, from smooth to slightly wavy, with waves on the back of the body being most noticeable. It feels denser on the thighs. In the tail the hair is dense.

At least some federations: Curly hair is a foul.

The preferred color is white with reddish brown spots, the spots can be reddish brown and yellowish reddish brown (orange).

White: chest, feet, tail tip, snout, and neck.

At least some federations: Never of a color or without white.

Long fall. Slightly arched at the tip. The tip should not be raised higher than the back (back) when the dog is active.

To the cross or shoulders: Males should measure at least 70 cm (approximately 27Ѕ inches). The minimum height of the females is 65 cm (approximately 25Ѕ inches).

The weight is 55 to 90 kg (approximately 120 to 200 pounds).

Usually the litter is five to six puppies. Litters of up to 22 puppies are recorded.

San Bernardo, being one of the largest dogs with the greatest weight, has a very limited longevity compared to other dogs. Careful, it must be 8 to 10 years old.


The San Bernardo are affectionate and placid dogs. His instinctive sympathy will probably counteract the initial fear of a stranger who approaches such a large dog. However, the San Bernardo are equally fast in protecting family members who believe they are in danger.

Because they are so friendly, sweet and tolerant, San Bernardos can get along especially well with families with children with good behavior. Famous for being exceptionally understanding and patient, the San Bernardo will be careful not to hurt children.

These dogs want to please, so their training may be easier than with other breeds.


The San Bernardo is a sociable dog. Nothing makes him happier than participating in family activities. However, this dog will probably sulk if he thinks they are depriving him of fun. Given the large size of the adult San Bernardo, his training is indispensable, the earlier the better. This breed is reputed to be stubborn from time to time. However, once the Saint Bernard understands what is expected of him, his instinctive desire to please will usually counteract his stubbornness.

The adult San Bernardo sheds hair twice a year, in spring and autumn. Regular brushing will help minimize such change.

Although the dog needs to eat enough food to maintain a healthy weight, it should not be supercharged. An excess of weight can force the joints and worsen the problems of hips or elbows that the dog could have. The food requirements, in proportion, for a San Bernardo may be lower than those of other races because their temperament is calmer and needs less exercise than many other races.

As with other very large races, the San Bernardos have a relatively short life. Their life expectancy usually ranges between eight and ten years.

The San Bernardos are strong dogs of giant size with deep mythological and legendary roots. Although it was traditionally believed that this breed developed in a monastery in the Swiss Alps in the eleventh century, the first verifiable appearance of this dog in the monastery, or anywhere else, probably occurred about six centuries later.

Experts believe that those first monastery dogs were used as guard dogs. However, shortly after his lifeguard skill was evident. During the following three centuries, the San Bernardo would have saved more than two thousand human lives.

Today the San Bernardo are famous not only for their historical feats, but also for their love and devotion to their human companions, especially children. Two well-known children's films of the nineties, Beethoven and Beethoven 2, took advantage of this feature to tell stories about the adventures of an adorable Saint Bernard with his American family located in a residential area.