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Bernese Mountain Dog vs. Saint Bernard: Know the Difference

Hifza Nasir
By Hifza Nasir & Shumaila Saeed || Published on March 5, 2024
Bernese Mountain Dog is known for its agility and long fur, ideal for cold climates, while Saint Bernard is larger, with a rescue heritage. Both are friendly.
Bernese Mountain Dog vs. Saint Bernard

Key Differences

Bernese Mountain Dogs and Saint Bernards are both large, friendly breeds originating from the Swiss Alps, but their histories diverge significantly. The Bernese is a versatile farm dog, used for herding cattle and pulling carts, while the Saint Bernard is famous for its role in mountain rescue, guided by monks at the Saint Bernard Pass.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024
Both breeds have thick, double coats that protect them against cold weather, the Bernese Mountain Dog's fur is longer and silkier, requiring more grooming. Saint Bernards, on the other hand, can have either short or long fur, with the short-haired variety being slightly easier to maintain.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024
Saint Bernards are generally larger and heavier than Bernese Mountain Dogs. A male Saint Bernard can weigh up to 180 pounds, while a male Bernese typically reaches about 115 pounds. This size difference also reflects in their strength and stamina, with Saint Bernards having a slight edge in endurance.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024
Both breeds are known for their gentle temperament and loyalty to their families. However, Bernese Mountain Dogs tend to be a bit more energetic and playful, while Saint Bernards are more laid-back and patient, making the latter a better choice for families with small children.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024
Lifespan is another area where the breeds differ. Bernese Mountain Dogs have a shorter life expectancy, usually around 7-10 years, due to their susceptibility to certain cancers. Saint Bernards have a slightly longer lifespan, averaging 8-10 years, but they too face health challenges due to their size.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Origin

Swiss Alps
Swiss Alps
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

Primary Use

Herding, pulling carts
Mountain rescue
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Coat Type

Long, silky, needs grooming
Short or long, less grooming
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Size

Up to 115 pounds
Up to 180 pounds
Dua Fatima
Dua Fatima
Mar 05, 2024

Temperament

Energetic, playful
Laid-back, patient
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Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024
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Lifespan

7-10 years
8-10 years
Dua Fatima
Dua Fatima
Mar 05, 2024

Health Issues

Prone to cancers
Size-related issues
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

Grooming Needs

High
Moderate to high
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Exercise Requirements

Moderate to high
Moderate
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Good with Children

Yes
Yes, especially patient
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024
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Bernese Mountain Dog and Saint Bernard Definitions

Bernese Mountain Dog

A large, long-furred dog known for its tricolor coat.
The Bernese Mountain Dog thrives in cold weather due to its thick fur.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 27, 2024

Saint Bernard

Faces health challenges due to its size.
Caring for a Saint Bernard means paying attention to its joint health.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 27, 2024

Bernese Mountain Dog

Originally bred for herding and pulling carts.
The Bernese Mountain Dog effortlessly pulled the cart filled with farm produce.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Feb 27, 2024

Saint Bernard

Known for its gentle temperament and patience.
The Saint Bernard patiently waited by the toddler's side.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Feb 27, 2024

Bernese Mountain Dog

Prone to certain cancers, affecting lifespan.
Despite health concerns, the Bernese Mountain Dog is a beloved family pet.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 27, 2024

Saint Bernard

A giant breed famous for mountain rescue.
The Saint Bernard is revered for its historic role in saving lives in the Alps.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 27, 2024

Bernese Mountain Dog

Known for its agility and strength.
The agile Bernese Mountain Dog navigated the rugged terrain with ease.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Feb 27, 2024

Saint Bernard

Larger and stronger than many breeds.
The Saint Bernard's strength is evident in its powerful build.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Feb 27, 2024

Bernese Mountain Dog

Requires regular grooming due to its long coat.
Grooming the Bernese Mountain Dog's silky fur is a weekly ritual.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Feb 27, 2024

Saint Bernard

Can have either short or long fur.
The short-haired Saint Bernard requires less grooming than its long-haired counterpart.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Feb 27, 2024

Repeatedly Asked Queries

Which breed is larger, Bernese Mountain Dog or Saint Bernard?

Saint Bernard is generally larger and heavier than the Bernese Mountain Dog.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

Can both breeds be used for rescue operations?

While Saint Bernards are specifically known for mountain rescue, Bernese Mountain Dogs are not traditionally rescue dogs.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

What kind of health issues do these breeds face?

Bernese Mountain Dogs are prone to cancers, while Saint Bernards face health challenges related to their size.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

Is either breed considered a good choice for first-time dog owners?

Due to their size and grooming needs, neither breed is typically recommended for first-time dog owners.
Dua Fatima
Dua Fatima
Mar 05, 2024

Are both breeds suitable for cold climates?

Yes, both have thick coats that protect them against cold weather.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Which breed lives longer?

Saint Bernards have a slightly longer average lifespan compared to Bernese Mountain Dogs.
Dua Fatima
Dua Fatima
Mar 05, 2024

Are these breeds good with children?

Yes, both are known for being gentle and patient, making them good family pets.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Which breed requires more grooming?

The Bernese Mountain Dog requires more grooming due to its longer fur.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

What makes Bernese Mountain Dogs unique among other breeds?

Their agility, strength, and distinctive tricolor coat set them apart.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

What were Bernese Mountain Dogs originally bred for?

They were bred for herding livestock and pulling carts.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Do both breeds require a lot of exercises?

Bernese Mountain Dogs require moderate to high exercise, while Saint Bernards need moderate exercise.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Are Bernese Mountain Dogs good for farm work?

Yes, they were originally bred for tasks around the farm, including herding and pulling carts.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

How often do Saint Bernards need to be groomed?

Their grooming frequency depends on the fur type; short-haired varieties require less grooming than long-haired ones.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

How does the temperament of Bernese Mountain Dogs compare to Saint Bernards?

Bernese Mountain Dogs are more energetic and playful, while Saint Bernards are more laid-back and patient.
Hifza Nasir
Hifza Nasir
Mar 05, 2024

Can Saint Bernards live comfortably in warm climates?

They can adapt but may struggle in very hot weather due to their thick coats.
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed
Mar 05, 2024

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About Author
Hifza Nasir
Written by
Hifza Nasir
Shumaila Saeed
Co-written by
Shumaila Saeed
Shumaila Saeed, an expert content creator with 6 years of experience, specializes in distilling complex topics into easily digestible comparisons, shining a light on the nuances that both inform and educate readers with clarity and accuracy.

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