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Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Origins:

The Bernese Mountian is an old breed. Though it is impossible to put an actual date on when the breed was formed, we know that it was developed from dogs that came with Julias Cesar and his Legions when the Roman Empire moved into the Swiss mountain range. The Berner was developed along with four other Greater Swiss Mountian Dogs, the Entlebucher Mountain Dog, the Appenzeller Sennenhund, and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog. All four of these breeds share a similarity in appearance and that striking tri-color cost. However, the Berner is the only one that posses long hair out of the four. Each breed also had similar purposes being used as draft dogs to pull carts, droving cattle, and farm and family guardians.

The Pyrenese Mountian Dog, or Great Pyrenese, is an even older breed. France is where the breed was first standardized and refined. But, the breed is much, much older. Experts believe the breed actually originated in Asia or Siberia and came along with immigrants who moved into Europe. There have also been fossils of the breed found dating back as far as 1,800 to 1,000 B.C. But, we do know that the breed was adopted as the Royal dog of France sometime in the 17th century as that is where it eventually made its permanent home.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Appearance:

The Bernese has a fascinating appearance with that long, silky majestic coat of white underbelly, black on the top, and brown markings around the gums and eyes. They are a sturdy, powerful dog which some incredible muscle underneath their luxurious coats. Their ears are triangle-shaped and sit high up on their heads. They also have a bushy tail, which tends to sit at a lower position on their rear.

Males can be up to 27.5 inches tall and weigh 115 pounds. In contrast, females can grow up to 26 inches tall and weigh up to 95 pounds.

The Berner only comes in one color: tri-color.

The Pyrenese Mountian dog is a show stopper. They are another fluffy dog, though they are incredibly large and powerful. They appear regal or majestic. They have a large head and dark, intelligent, observant gaze.

Male Pyrenese cand stand up to 32 inches tall and weigh well over 100 pounds, and females can be up to 29 inches tall and weigh anywhere over 85 pounds.

The Pyrenese always comes with a base coat of white. However, they can have some markings in different colors, such as grey, tan, reddish-brown, and Badger.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Exercise Requirements And Grooming Requirements:

The Berner is a breed that was bred to work. Thus, they have more energy than one might think they would for a breed their size. They were used to pull carts, move cattle, and to guard. They are happiest when they can have a job that will drain them both physically and mentally. But, if no job is available, one will need to make time for long walks and play sessions to burn off some energy. If they are not afforded a physical outlet, this breed will create its own ways to expel that energy like making a job out of chewing up furniture, or dumpster diving in your kitchen trashcan.

This breed also requires a lot of grooming. They have a long coat which sheds frequently and a dense wooly undercoat, which they will blow twice a year when the season change. They need a proper brushing two to three times a week, and even if you stay on schedule with this grooming regime, you can still expect to find hair around the house and sticking to clothing.

The Pyrenese is also a working dog, and no matter how much you exercise them, they are still going to work, though not in the way you might think. This breed was used for guarding herds of livestock high up in the mountains. So, while a pleasant walk will save them from the "zoomies," at home and around the house, they will be on the lookout for threats. If you have a fenced-in backyard, they will regularly patrol the perimeter to make sure there is nothing unwelcome, and nothing is out of sorts.

As for grooming, the Pyrenese has a ton of hair. But, they only require weekly grooming to reduce shedding. They do possess an undercoat and will blow their coats when the seasons change, so be prepared with a pin brush and a slicker brush to reduce the amount of fur blown around your house. This breed does possess a coat that is naturally dirt and tangle resistant. So, you do not want to bathe this breed too much, and you never want to shave them as this can damage the natural properties of their coat and result in their fur matting- and when it mats, it MATS.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Life Expectancy And Health:

The Bernese Mountian dog has a depressingly short life span of seven to ten years. Though some say it is closer to six years of age.

The breed is also not the healthiest. They are frequent sufferers from bloat, a condition in which the stomach turns over on itself in the dog's abdomen. They also can have Hip or Elbow Dysplasia. They also have a very high risk of cancers. Histiocytosis being the most common. 25% of all cases of this type of cancer can be found within the Bernese Mountain Dog breed. Some genetic diseases such as Von Willebrand's Disease can result in clotting issues and cause the dog to bleed excessively if it happens to be injured or even during surgery, such as a spay-neuter.

The Pyrenese Mountian Dog, on the other hand, is a generally healthy breed. With life expectancies from ten to twelve years.

This breed also suffers from Bloat and Hip or Elbow Dysplasia. Some eye disorders and neurological issues have been seen in the breed as well. Patellar luxation, which is a disorder in which the kneecaps dislocate. There have also been some cases of bone cancer within the breed.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Social Needs:

The Bernese Mountian Dog loves its people. It truly 100% adores them, and they enjoy shadowing their humans around the house. They tend to pick one person from the household and develop a special bond with that individual. The social needs of this breed are incredibly high and they are not a suitable choice for a dog that will live outside all of the time as their desire to be with their people is so deeply embedded into their character.

The Pyrenese Mountian Dog also loves its people. But this is a breed that will not feel the need to follow you around. The breed was developed to work autonomously and independently when required. So, while this breed will love its people and defend them with its life when the chips are down it is fine to go do its own thing.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Temperament:

The Berner is an affectionate dog, with high intelligence. It is also a fun-loving breed that wants to go where its people go and do things with them both inside and outside the house. While loving and amiable with its family, it can be somewhat aloof with strangers. Though they will come to their families aid in a time of need, they prefer to rely on intimidation tactics to get the job done.

The Great Pyrenese, in comparison, is a serious dog. They are calm, patient, smart, and tend to be on the more mellow side. But if there is something to get serious about this dog will not waste any time getting the point across. And because they were bred to act independently, they most likely not look to their owner for direction when something needs to be handled.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Intelligence And Trainability:

The Bernese Mountain Dog is highly intelligent. It is also very biddable, which makes it very easy to train. They love to please their people, so if it makes their owner happy, they will gladly put in the effort into learning whatever it is you want to teach them. This breed does tend to be a bit on the softer side, and their feelings are easily hurt, so gentler methods may be more appropriate during training.

The Great Pyrenese is also incredibly intelligent. However, it isn't in the way we gauge intelligence in most dogs. They often don't see the point in doing endless repetitions of one command and get bored quite easily if they don't see the point, which makes this a breed better to train as you go through daily life rather than setting aside time for training sessions. This breed is also incredibly observant and can pick up things on its own. For example, you don't want the cat in the kitchen. If it sees you shoo the cat out enough, it will start to also keep the cat out of the kitchen, which can sometimes be problematic.

Bernese Mountain Dog Vs Pyrenese Mountain Dog Child, Small Animal, and Other Dog Friendliness:

The Berner is an outstanding choice for families with children. They tend to be gentle with young children and more predictable, which goes well when there are little ones involved.

The Bernese Mountian Dog also does well with small animals. They have grown up with them or are introduced to them appropriately. They do have some prey drive, and with their energy, they may be prone sometimes to give chase.

The Berner also does well with other dogs as long as good introductions are done beforehand. Though, they may be more suspicious of strange dogs coming onto their property.

The Pyrenese Mountian dog is also stellar with children as they are naturally calm and laid back. It is also within their instincts, as it is with most Live Stock Guardian breeds, to protect and look out for the weaker and more vulnerable charges.

The Pyrenese is an excellent dog for coexisting with small animals. They are typically very accepting of any little critters that are "theirs." But problems can arise when small animals that are strangers to them wander into their territory, and the results can be deadly.

This breed does great with other dogs that are members of their household. But, when it comes to strange dogs coming onto their turf? It can sometimes be a recipe for disaster. Proper introductions should always be done with a Pyrenese Mountian dog, and even then, if the other dog doesn't respect the rules, you can expect this breed to set them straight and possibly issue what they think are corrections. This breed is also not the right choice for taking to the dog park.


This concludes our match up of these two mountain dog breeds. Do you have one of these breeds? Or which would you pick?


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