One of the rising stars in the designer dog breed category is the Bernedoodle, a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle. This popular new breed has a lot of positive attributes. However, you should know a few things about the breed before choosing a Bernedoodle for a companion.
A Berndoodle Poodle mix comes in more varieties than a simple 50% Bernese Mountain Dog and 50% Poodle split. There are seven different mixes available: each with a different percentage of each breed. Whilst the mix typically breeds from a standard-sized Bernese Mountain Dog, there are 3 sizes of poodle to mate with. So this mix comes in many sizes and colors.
Understanding the background of the Bernedoodle and knowing how to spot the best traits in a puppy can be the beginning of a great relationship with wonderful dogs who can provide companionship, entertainment, and service for years. We’ll explain the Bernedoodle’s traits and needs to help you make a good decision about how well a Bernese Poodle mix fits your lifestyle in this breed and buying guide so you are fully informed.
The Origins of the Bernese Poodle Mix
The history of where Bernedoodles originate is a bit cloudy.
However, the first intentional breeding of a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle is thought to be Sherry Rupke’s work in Canada in 2003. Rupke has said that she intended to produce a hypoallergenic breed with good characteristics and traits.
The results certainly proved themselves. Bernedoodles usually bring together the best traits of both breeds.
- Patience and good temperament
- Intelligence coupled with high energy
- Playful and inquisitive
- A wide range of sizes from 10 to 90 pounds
- Low to non-shedding
- Healthy and long-lived
- Devoted and loving.
What Are Bernedoodle Generations?
Being a hybrid breed, Bernedoodles have specific generations. That just means different combinations of genes to create the Bernedoodle.
When you are buying a Bernedoodle you need to be aware of these generation types because they may influence your decision in buying a puppy.
The “F” in the generation type means “Filial Hybrid”. The Bernese Poodle mix is a hybrid of two purebred breeds: Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle. Each generation is a different percentage mix of these two purebred breeds.
The number in the generation type refers to the generation, that is first, second, third, and so on so and F2 would mean the second generation of offspring.
|Generation||% Poodle||% Bernese Mountain Dog|
My research revealed that the F1B with a 75% poodle in the mix doesn’t mean there’s a 75% chance this dog will have the look or personality of a poodle. The % in their generation just refers to the likelihood the dog will not shed and be hypoallergenic.
An F1 cross is considered the healthiest. This is because the parents carry the same gene for common inheritable diseases.
Teddy Bear Bernedoodles
F2B Bernedoodles are popularly referred to as a Teddy Bear Bernedoodle. This is a cross between an F1 Bernedoodle with an F1B Bernedoodle with the result being a 62.5% Poodle and a 37.5% Bernese Mountain Dog.
This generation has a little more Bernese in them compared with an F1B generation.
Coats and Colors
|F1||Plush to loose wavy coats. Curly coats are the exception.||Tricolor (traditional color), Phantom tri color or black and white||Recommended for families with mild allergies.|
|F1B||Loose wavy to curly plush coats||Tricolor (traditional color), Phantom tricolor, Phantom, Sable tricolor, Brindle tricolor, and more color variations.||Recommended for families with moderate to severe allergies. With 75% Poodle, this generation is one of most hypo-allergenic.|
|F2B||Loose wavy, straight and curly||Tricolor (traditional color), Phantom tricolor, Phantom, Sable tricolor, Brindle tricolor, and more color variations.||Suit families with moderate to severe allergies|
Experienced breeders will be able to let you know what the coat type will be of puppies in the litter when they reach 4-6 weeks old.
Check out the color guide at Utah Bernedoodles website.
Most first-generation Bernedoodles will shed slightly and some can have moderate shedding. With 75% Poodle, F1B Bernedoodles are the most likely to shed less and be the most non-allergenic.
Teddy Bears (F2B) have better success at non-shedding vs the F1 and F2 generations.
Bernedoodle Size and Types
The weights we have below are only estimates. No breeder can guarantee weights and heights.
You will notice different generations use different sizing terminology. We’ve tried to make it easier by putting what you need to know in a table format.
If you are looking for a Bernese Poodle Mix that will stay smaller than 50 pounds, it would be best to find a Tiny Bernedoodle or a small to medium Teddy Bear Bernedoodle.
This dog is a Standard Poodle crossed with a Bernese Mountain Dog. The weights are as follows:
|Generation||Larger Standard||Small Standard||Standard|
|F1||80-100 lbs||55-80 lbs|
|F1B||55 plus lbs|
|F2B||55 plus lbs|
Standard Bernedoodles come in at around 23-29 inches at the shoulder.
These aren’t exactly lap dogs!
Miniature Bernedoodle or Mini Bernedoodle
If you cross a miniature Poodle crossed with a Bernese Mountain Dog, you would get a Mini Bernedoodle.
Miniature Bernedoodle measures at 18-22 inches at the shoulder.
These dogs make excellent apartment dogs, and their size is perfect for romping and playing with children.
Toy or Tiny Bernedoodle
You have probably guessed that a Ting Bernedoodle is a cross between a Toy Poodle crossed with a Bernese Mountain Dog. They measure 12-17 inches around the shoulder.
Please note there are no Tiny Bernedoodles available as a first-generation (F1).
If you want a lap snuggling companion dog, a Tiny Bernedoodle is a great choice. Usually weighing less than 24 lbs. and rarely getting taller than 17 inches at the shoulder, the Tiny Bernedoodle is small enough to curl up in your lap but large enough to take on comfortable walks.
|Standard Bernedoodle||12-15 years|
|Miniature Bernedoodle or Mini Bernedoodle||12-17 years|
|Toy Bernedoodle||12-18 years|
Both breeds, the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog, are known for their excellent temperaments.
When bred together, these easy-going traits usually mean a dog that fits well as both a family dog and a companion for a single person.
You can expect your Bernese Poodle mix to:
- Be a mixture of patience, sweetness, smartness, and energy.
- Do well around children of any size or age.
- Bond deeply with their owner and want to remain as close as possible all the time
- Need regular exercise and mental challenges
- Be a bit stubborn and may resist training.
What questions should you, as a buyer, ask a breeder to determine if that breeder is reputable?
- What is your goal with your breeding program?
- Are all of your dog’s health tested before breeding?
- When I know what litter I will be getting a puppy from can I see copies of the parent’s health testing?
- Have you had any past puppies with any health issues? If a breeder has been breeding for more than 10 years, they will more than likely have had at least one past puppy with a health issue. This question is a good one to ask a Bernedoodle breeder to see how honest they are and to see if they will tell you if they have had any health issues in the past.
Look for Bernedoodle breeders that do the volhard testing and help families pick a puppy based on temperament not looks!
|Name of Breeder||Location||Contact Name||Contact Details|
|Utah Bernedoodle*||Penrose, Utah, U.S.||Ruth Sommers|
|SwissRidge Bernedoodles*||Schomberg, Ontario, Canada||Sherry Rupke||(289) 608-8164|
|Rocky Mountain Bernedoodles*||Montrose, Colorado||Tammie and Fernando Rendon||(970) 240-5995|
|Highfalutin Furry Babies*||Florida||Alicia & Lexie Marshallemail@example.com|
|Alpine Bernedoodles8||Montrose, Colorado||Kathryn Hadfield||(970) 901-5892 ThunderRiverRanch@yahoo.com|
|KB Ranch Doodles||Aubrey, Texas, U.S.||Not available||(940) 536-8833|
|Buckeye Ridge Bernedoodles*||Glouster, Ohio||Paul and Angie Jewell||(740) 297-9310|
|Above and Beyond Standards||Jefferson, North Carolina||Not firstname.lastname@example.org|
*Specialize in breeding Bernedoodles only
Choosing A Bernedoodle – What to Look for and What to Expect
Before you go shopping for a Bernese Poodle mix puppy, you should stop and think about your lifestyle and what you want from a new dog.
The Bernedoodle breed is perfect for a wide range of lifestyles and home situations due to the two-parent breeds’ attributes.
Picking a new puppy is exciting and emotional for many people.
Considering that this dog may be part of your life for up to 18 years, it is important to find the right match.
However, how do you tell what you are getting when you look at a litter of puppies?
The obvious things
You should know going into the selection of your choice of certain characteristics. The most important of these is size and sex. However, sex is not an issue for many people because they intend to spay or neuter their new pet.
Coloring and markings
Bernedoodles come in a fantastic array of colors and markings. You may have seen a dog that strikes your fancy and want to find a dog with similar colors or markings.
Temperament and personality
Figuring out a puppy’s temperament and personality is more difficult.
Ask the breeder, who probably has an idea of each puppy’s characteristics.
Don’t be in a hurry.
Spend time with the litter getting to know each of the puppies. With a little observation, you will begin to see the difference in each member of the litter’s personalities and temperament.
Background and pedigree
Ask lots of questions about the parents of the litter.
Ask to meet them if possible.
Getting to know your new puppy’s parents can give you insight into how your puppy will develop as it matures.
Know the breeder
You should spend as much time getting to know the breeder as you do picking out your puppy.
Finding and working with a good breeder helps ensure that you are getting a healthy puppy and from a good environment.
A good breeder can also provide a wealth of information down the road if you do have problems.
Frequently Asked Buyer Questions
Outdoordogfun.com approached a breeder in Utah, to find out what information you need to know when talking to a breeder and what questions you need to ask them before you buy your new Bernese Poodle mix puppy.
What factors affect the price of a Bernedoodle?
The price is determined by the breeder. Every breeder seems to have different prices.
What price (on average) should a buyer expect to pay for the standard, mini, and tiny Bernedoodles?
The average cost of a Bernedoodle is $4000.
What are the most common questions breeders receive from Bernedoodle puppy buyers?
- Do you have a puppy available now?!!
- What size will my puppy be?
- Can I get my puppy NOW?
What is a Health Clearance?
The breeder at Utah Bernedoodles said to them “health clearance” means that the dog is OFA/Pennhip (hip health) and DNA tested. A good question to ask a breeder is what kind of testing have they done on the parents and puppies around health. You want puppies that are preferably full health tested.
In terms of maintenance, what is the average annual cost for a Bernedoodle once you factor in food, grooming, vet bills, etc?
The average annual cost is around $1200 per year.
What are the exercise needs of the Bernedoodle breed?
This will depend on the temperament of the puppy you get. Some of them need daily exercise, twice daily, and a few times a week. This is why it is very important to work with a breeder that will help you pick a puppy based off of temperament!
Back at Home – Now What?
If you have made your choice on your new companion and are back home, you must make good choices about caring for and raising your puppy.
Starting your puppy off right will make things later much easier.
Proper training starts early
The best method for training dogs are systems based on positive reinforcement.
Using positive reinforcement is true for Bernedoodles, who have a predisposition to stubbornness.
Getting an early start with a consistent training method will usually mean a wonderfully trained and obedient adult dog.
If your Bernedoodle is not listening to you, read this article on our blog for some helpful tips.
What to feed your puppy – nutrition is the key to long life
What and how much to feed your Bernedoodle depends on several factors.
- The size of your Bernedoodle
- Quality is more important than quantity
- Vary the diet. Dogs get bored too.
In general, you should feed your Bernedoodle puppy four times a day. When your Bernedoodle reaches adulthood, cut back to 2 meals per day.
Here’s a guide on how much to feed your Bernedoodle.
|Type||Calories per day|
|Standard Bernedoodle||1400 to 1800 calories per day|
|Mini-Bernedoodles||750 – 1400 calories per day|
|Toy Bernedoodle||400 – 1000 calories per day|
Bernedoodle Health – Both Mental and Physical Health Requires Care
Establish a personal relationship with a good vet who is familiar with the Bernedoodle breed. if your Bernedoodle is local to you, they could recommend a vet.
By and large, Bernedoodles are healthy dogs who usually live a long life.
However, there are things you should know and understand about your Bernedoodle.
- Some Bernedoodles are prone to hip and elbow dysplasia. That’s why we recommend breeders who do OFA-Pennhip tests on parents. Dysplasia is more common in standard size Bernedoodles than the smaller breeds.
- Ask your breeder about any testing done on the parents for more common diseases and issues that might point to problems later.
- Bernedoodles descend from working dog breeds and, as such, tend to be athletic and energetic. Regular exercise is a must to keep your Bernedoodle both physically and mentally healthy and alert.
- Keep life interesting for your Bernedoodle. Bernedoodles are intelligent and curious dogs. They can easily get bored if their routine becomes too repetitive. Find ways to challenge your Bernedoodle, both physically and mentally.
Finding that Perfect Companion
The Bernese Poodle mix has rapidly become a popular breed for families and individuals. These highly intelligent dogs are loving and devoted and will bond with you and your family. Doing a bit of homework and understanding the Bernedoodle breed puts you in a better place to pick out your new companion. Remember, you are adding a family member that will be with you for many years. Make wise choices.