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Showing posts with label swiss dog. Show all posts
Showing posts with label swiss dog. Show all posts

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Everything about your Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

Everything about your Greater Swiss Mountain Dog
  The Greater Swiss Mountain dog breed was developed to be an all-around working dog, herding cattle, pulling carts, and standing guard. These days, the Swissy enjoys life as a family pet, but because of his working heritage, he enjoys being busy. This powerful breed excels in all sorts of dog sports, from agility to weight pulling.

Overview
  Switzerland has four varieties of farm dogs, and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, is the largest. On the farm, his jobs included guarding and herding livestock and pulling carts loaded with milk and cheeses. This is a giant breed, with males weighing in at 105 to 140 pounds and females at 85 to 110 pounds.
  These days, the Greater Swiss is primarily a family companion or show dog, beloved for his gentle, easygoing temperament. He has many good qualities, including an alert nature that makes him an excellent watchdog. But, like any breed, he’s not right for everyone. If you want a Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, be prepared to do a lot of homework to find him and to put in plenty of effort training and socializing once you bring him home.
  Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs have a short, easy care coat. Weekly brushing — more often during shedding season — will help to keep loose hair under control. Clean the ears and trim the nails as needed, and bathe the Swissy when he’s dirty to keep his tricolor coat gleaming.
  While you might think of him as an outdoor dog, nothing could be farther from the truth. Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs love people and will pine without human companionship. They should have access to a securely fenced yard, but when the family is home the Swissy should be with them. It’s also important to remember that the Swissy does not tolerate heat well, so during hot weather he needs to stay in a cool, shady place with ready access to fresh water.

Highlights
  • Due to his large size, the Swissy is not suited for apartment or condo living. A home with a fenced yard is ideal.
  • The Swissy was bred to work and likes to have a job to do. Obedience training can give him the mental stimulation he needs, and is essential for handling a dog of this size.
  • Although he's generally good with kids, the Swissy is a large dog who can accidentally knock over a small child.
  • The Swissy is prone to overheating. Keep him inside in air conditioning or in front of fans when the weather's hot, and wait until it cools off to exercise him.
  • Some Swiss Mountain Dogs will chase small animals. To keep the neighbor's cat safe — as well as your dog — make sure the yard is securely fenced, and keep him on leash when you're out and about.
  • The Greater Swiss Moutain Dog was an all-around farm companion who drove livestock to pasture, pulled milk carts to the dairy, and acted as a watchdog. They usually hauled the heavy cans of milk in pairs, so it was common to see two of them hooked up to a cart.
  • The Swissy is a large dog with a tricolor coat, a gentle expression, dark-brown eyes, triangular-shaped drop ears, and a long tail.
Breed standards

AKC group: Working
UKC group: Guardian Dog
Average lifespan: 7 to 11 years
Average size: 85 to 140 pounds
Coat appearance: short, double coat
Coloration: tricolor (black, rust or tan, and white)
Hypoallergenic: No
Best Suited For: Families with children, active singles and seniors, houses with yards
Temperament: Easygoing, gentle, bold, alert
Comparable Breeds: Bernese Mountain Dog, Mastiff

History
  The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is considered one of Switzerland's oldest dog breeds. There are several theories as to the Swissy's origins. The most popular is that he's descended from large, Mastiff-like dogs that were brought to the Alps by invading Roman Legions.
  The Swissy's ancestors served as herding, guard, and draft dogs. At one time the Swissy is thought to have been one of the most popular breeds in Switzerland. By the 1900s however, their numbers dwindled, probably because their traditional jobs on Swiss farms were taken over by other dog breeds or machines.
  In 1908, a canine researcher named Albert Heim spotted two dogs at a Swiss Kennel Club jubilee, listed as "short-haired Bernese Mountain Dogs." Heim recognized the dogs as being large members of the Sennenhund type, a family of four breeds that includes the Swissy.
Heim lobbied to get the dogs recognized as a separate breed and, in 1909, the Swiss Kennel Club listed the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog  in the Swiss Stud Book.
  Since then, the breed's popularity has grown slowly, but steadily. In 1968 the first Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs were brought to the U.S., and soon after, the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Club of America formed. The Swissy was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1995, as a member of the Working Group.



Personality
  The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog was designed as a draft dog and was often referred to as “the poor man's horse.” They are serious dogs who still enjoy pulling carts and sleds, but have grown to be faithful family companions. They are fiercely loyal to their families and require constant companionship to be happy. Families with children may shy away from such a large dog, but the Swissy gets along well with kids of all ages. 
  Small children should be supervised, as they can easily get knocked down by an excited Swissy, but the dog never means to harm. They are alert watchdogs, letting everyone in a three-block radius know that a stranger is approaching, but they are not aggressive guard dogs and can be trusted to be polite to house guests, once properly introduced.

Health
  The average life span of the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is 10 to 12 years. Breed health concerns may include bloat (gastric dilatation and volvulus), epilepsy, elbow dysplasia and hip dysplasia.

Care

  As it is a traditional working dog, this breed is fond of spending time outdoors, particularly in cold weather. It can survive outdoors in cool climates, but prefers to spend more time with its human family. The dog is also fond of pulling.
  A vigorous romp or a good, long walk is sufficient to fulfill its daily exercise requirements. Indoors, the dog requires a lot of space to stretch itself. Coat care in the form of brushing once a week is enough, but the frequency should be increased at times of shedding.

Living Conditions
  They will do okay in an apartment if sufficiently exercised. They prefer cool climates. A small yard is sufficient.

Trainability
  Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are a challenge to train, even for experienced owners. They are willful and independent, and training should begin as early as possible. Once this dog hits adolescence, he will behave like a typical teenager, testing your boundaries whenever possible.
  Consistency and strong leadership is key, but a Swissy should never be treated harshly. Training should involve a lot of treats, as this is probably the only way to motivate this headstrong animal.

Exercise Requirements

  Although Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs require a good bit of exercise, they do not need to run for long periods of time like some other breeds. Several long walks will keep a Swissy happy. He will be even happier if he is allowed to carry a backpack or pull a wagon.
  The Swissy likes to feel that he is doing a job so incorporating work with fun will make your dog feel needed.

Grooming Needs
  Grooming the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is easy. Brush once or twice per week to keep shedding under control, though Spring and Fall will mean brushing several times per week. Bathe only as needed, which typically amounts to every four to six weeks.
  Check the dog's ears regularly for signs of irritation, infection, or wax buildup. Clean the ears with a cotton ball and a veterinarian-approved cleanser. Brushing teeth weekly (or more), can keep tartar from building up, promote gum health, and keep bad breath at bay. If the dog does not wear down his toenails naturally, trim the nails once per month. If they make a clicking sound on hard floors, they are too long.

Children And Other Pets

  The Swissy enjoys the attention and company of youngsters if he's given plenty of exposure to them beginning in puppyhood, and the kids are taught to treat the dog with care and respect. However, young children should never be left unsupervised with any dog. Even if the Swissy means well, this is a large, strong dog, and a Swissy can easily knock over a small child by accident.
  As with every breed, you should always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's eating or sleeping or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog, no matter how friendly, should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
  The good-natured Swissy generally enjoys the company of other dogs and loves to play rough and rambunctious. This is especially true if he has been properly socialized with other dogs at an early age. As in any breed, dogs of the same sex who haven't been spayed or neutered may not tolerate each another.
  Swissy dogs vary in their prey drive: some will chase squirrels, cats, and other small animals, and some won't. As with any dog, you'll have a better shot at peace among the family pets if you expose your Swissy to other animals beginning at an early age, and are careful about the introductions.

Is the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog the Right Breed for you?

Low Maintenance: Infrequent grooming is required to maintain upkeep. No trimming or stripping needed.
Moderate Shedding: Routine brushing will help. Be prepared to vacuum often!
Difficult Training: The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog isn't deal for a first time dog owner. Patience and perseverance are required to adequately train it.
Fairly Active: It will need regular exercise to maintain its fitness. Trips to the dog park are a great idea.
Not Good for New Owners: This breed is best for those who have previous experience with dog ownership.
Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them.

Did You Know?
  In Switzerland, the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is known as the Grosser Schweizer Sennenhund, which means “large dog of the Alpine pastures.”


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Thursday, December 28, 2017

Everything about your Entlebucher Mountain Dog

Everything about your Entlebucher Mountain Dog
  The athletic and physical Entle makes an excellent family dog; he is known for his extreme devotion to his family. He is a great watchdog, as he is aloof with strangers and has a big bark for his size. Self-assured and determined, he is intelligent and thrives on being with his people.

Overview
  The Entlebucher, or Entle for short, is a Swiss herding breed related to the Appenzeller, the Bernese Mountain Dog, and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog; of the four, he's the smallest.
  He's known for his intelligence, personable attitutude, agility, and loyalty. He's independent and self-confident, yet he bonds strongly to his person and is happiest spending the day at his family's side. He's got energy to burn, and needs an owner who can give him about an hour of vigorous exercise a day — if not herding flocks, then competing in dog sports like tracking, frisbee, or agility. Like other smart working dogs, he loves having jobs to do, so begin training this smart cookie early, teaching him to gather up dirty laundry, bring in the newspaper, fetch your slippers, or other useful tasks.
  The Entlebucher can be territorial and will bark to announce the presence of strangers or arrival of guests. He's aloof with people he doesn't know, and like any dog, he needs early socialization to learn how to behave around strangers and other dogs. He loves his kids but, because he also loves roughousing, he must learn to be gentle with little ones. He may try to "herd" his kids by nipping at their heels.

Other Quick Facts
  • There are two common pronunciations for Entlebucher: Ent’-lee-boo-ker or Entel-boo-ker. He is also known as the Entlebucher Sennenhund (which means dog of the Alpine herdsman) and Entlebucher Cattle Dog.
  • The Entlebucher is a medium-size dog with a compact but muscular body. Dark-brown eyes have an alert, attentive, friendly expression. Triangular ears, rounded at the tips, hang down, raising up slightly when the dog is alert. The tricolor coat is black with symmetrical white markings on the face, chest and feet and rich fawn to mahogany markings on the eyebrows and between the black and white markings.
Breed standards

AKC group: Herding
UKC group: Guardian Dog
Average lifespan: 11-15 years
Average size: 55-66 pounds
Coat appearance: double coat that consists of short, tight, harsh and glossy outer coat and a dense undercoat
Coloration:  black with symmetrical tan and white
Hypoallergenic: No
Best Suited For: Families with older children, active singles and seniors, houses with yards and farms/rural areas
Temperament: Devoted, loyal, intelligent, independent
Comparable Breeds: Appenzeller Sennenhunde, Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

History 
  All of the Swiss mountain dogs, including the Entlebucher, descend from mastiff-type dogs brought by the Romans more than 2,000 years ago. The dogs that became the Entlebucher was used to herd cattle to and from mountain pastures.
  The dogs were first called Entlebucherhund in 1889. They were little known and generally considered the same breed as the Appenzell Cattle dog until 1913. That year, four of the dogs were exhibited at a Swiss dog show. Based on the judges’ reports, they were classified in the Swiss Canine Stud Book as a fourth Mountain and Cattle Dog breed. Even so, it wasn’t until 1927 that a standard was written for them, after the founding of the Swiss Club of Entlebuch Cattle Dogs in 1926. 
  The breed developed slowly but was eventually recognized for his lively, tireless nature and excellent qualities as both a working and family dog. The American Kennel Club recognized the Entlebucher in 2011

Temperament
  Entlebucher Mountain Dogs are intelligent and very quick to learn new things. They are agile, active dogs by nature which means they enjoy being given things to do. In their native Switzerland, the Entlebucher is still used as a herding dog and are highly prized because they are so reliable and biddable by nature.
  They form extremely strong bonds with their owners whether in a working or home environment and are known to become totally devoted to their families and children. They are very people-oriented by nature and enjoy nothing more than being included in a household although they form the strongest bond with the person who usually feeds and takes care of them.
  Being so smart and so active, the Entlebucher thrives in a country environment and with people who live active, outdoor lives. They are a very good choice as a family pet in homes where one person is usually around when everyone else is out of the house. They are highly trainable and love nothing more than to learn new things. Entlebuchers excel at all sorts of canine sports which includes activities like agility and flyball.
  They are not the best choice for first time owners, because the Entlebucher needs to be trained and handled by someone who is familiar with the breed or similar type of active, intelligent working dog. Without the right amount of daily exercise and mental stimulation, an Entlebucher would quickly become bored and find new ways to amuse themselves which could result in them becoming wilful and unruly making them a lot harder to handle.
  If left to their own devices for long periods of time, the Entlebucher can also suffer from separation anxiety which could lead to a dog becoming destructive around the house. These hard working dogs are never happier than when they are being given something to do that occupies their minds. 

Health Problems
  Because the foundation stock of Entlebuchers was so small, these dogs are known to suffer from several hereditary ailments such as hip dysplasia, hemolytic anemia and progressive retinal atrophy.

Care
  As with any other breed, Entlebuchers need to be groomed on a regular basis to make sure their coats and skin are kept in top condition. They also need to be given regular daily exercise to ensure they remain fit and healthy. On top of this, dogs need to be fed good quality food that meets all their nutritional needs throughout their lives.

Living Conditions
  The Entlebucher Mountain Dog is not recommended for apartment life.

Trainability
  The Entlebucher Mountain Dog is highly intelligent and therefore in the right hands and environment they are easy to train. They revel in learning new things and are very quick to pick up on things. However, this means they quickly learn both the good and the bad, which is why their socialisation and training has to start early. It also has to be consistent throughout their lives because these active dogs like nothing more than knowing their place in the pack and who they can look to for direction and guidance.
  They excel at many canine sports which includes activities like flyball and agility because they adore the one-to-one attention they are given during a training session and remain highly focused when they take part in any competitions. Entlebuchers are always keen and alert, but they do not answer well to any sort of harsh correction or heavy handed training methods which would not achieve any sort of good results with these highly intelligent and voice sensitive dogs. An Entlebucher needs to know what is expected of them to be truly well rounded dogs.



Exercise Requirements
  Bred to herd cattle across the Swiss Alps for days on end, Entlebuchers have a virtually inexhaustible amount of energy. Therefore it is important that they be provided with at least an hour of vigorous exercise each day. It is also beneficial for these dogs to have a meaningful task to which they can devote themselves to.

Grooming
  The Entlebucher has a short, thick, double coat. The coat is easy to care for, but it sheds. Brush the dog weekly with a rubber curry brush to remove dead hair. The Entle sheds a little more heavily in spring, so you may need to brush a little more often for a few weeks until he has lost all of his winter coat.
  The rest is basic care. Trim the nails as needed, usually once a month. Brush the teeth frequently for good overall health and fresh breath. Check the ears weekly for dirt, redness or a bad odor that can indicate an infection. If the ears look dirty, wipe them out with a cotton ball dampened with a gentle ear cleaner recommended by your veterinarian.

Children and Other Pets
  Entlebuchers are known to be friendly, devoted dogs by nature and they love nothing more than to be part of a family. As such they are generally very good around children although they can play a little rough at times which means any interaction between younger children should always be well supervised by an adult to make sure things don't get too boisterous.
  If they have grown up with a family cat in a household, they usually get on well with them although they will think nothing of chasing off a neighbour's cat whenever they can. If well socialised from a young enough age, the Entlebucher generally gets on well with other dogs and smaller pets as long as they were introduced when a dog was younger. Care always has to be taken when they are around any small animals they don't already know just in case.

Is the Entlebucher Mountain Dog the Right Breed for you?
Low Maintenance: Infrequent grooming is required to maintain upkeep. Little to no trimming or stripping needed.
Moderate Shedding: Routine brushing will help. Be prepared to vacuum often!
Difficult Training: The Entlebucher Mountain Dog isn't deal for a first time dog owner. Patience and perseverance are required to adequately train it.
Very Active: It will need daily exercise to maintain its shape. Committed and active owners will enjoy performing fitness activities with this breed.
Not Good for New Owners: This breed is best for those who have previous experience with dog ownership.
Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them.

Did You Know?
  The Entlebucher is one of four farm dogs native to Switzerland. He takes his name from the Entlebuch valley where he originated.
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