Australian Shepherd vs. Bernese Mountain Dog

Last Updated on November 12, 2022 by Becky Roberts

*. Are you trying to choose between the Australian Shepherd and the Bernese Mountain Dog as your fluffy companion ?? There are many striking similarities between the two but there are also some big differences that you need to be aware.

Both of these breeds are friendly and active and highly-trainable .. Both can be a wonderful companion dog or family pet. They do have some differences in their sizes and temperaments. They can be a better match for certain families than others.

Want to know more? Learn more about the , breeds and which families they are best suited for. Learn about their history, how they are often compared, and hopefully get some insight into which breed might be best suited to your lifestyle. Let’s get started!

Australian Shepherd vs. Bernese Mountain Dog

Breed History

To understand what to expect from any breed of dog, you must look at their history Many of the breeds we love and know were originally created for a particular purpose. This history influences how pets behave today.

Both are both work dogs ,, which is a way that humans have bred them for specific tasks. Many working dogs share some common traits ,, including intelligence, protective attitude, and lots of energy. They thrive in active homes with plenty of space for running and exploring.

Although they are both working dogs both breeds were created for different purposes. Here is a brief overview of the unique breed histories.

Australian Shepherd

Believe it or not, Australian Shepherds are not from Australia. They were originally bred in America to assist farmers and ranchers with their livestock.

So why is the name? No one knows for sure (because this breed has been around for so long), but most experts believe the Australian Shepherd was bred as a mix of collies and sheepdogs that arrived in the U.S. from Australia back in the early 1840s.

The original purpose of the breed was to produce an intelligent, hard-working, and dependable dog that could be trained to herd animals, not chase them. Australian Shepherds are experts at following directions and returning sheep or cattle to their pens. This makes them one of today’s most useful working dogs.

Australian Shepherds were a popular housepet in the post-WWII period. Western movies and rodeos encouraged a new interest and passion for “cowboy culture.” Breed variations and mixes like the Aussiedoodle are gaining popularity, too!

Bernese Mountain Dog

The Bernese Mountain Dog, sometimes called the Berner, was bred as a working farm dog in Switzerland. They were once used to herd sheep and cattle, much like the Australian Shepherd.

But Berner wasn’t just bred for herding. They were also bred for their .friendliness, loyalty, strength, and strength . They are great companions and protectors as well as farm dogs.

Berners are a descendant of the Molosser breed. They have been around for a while. Some experts believe the first Berners were working on Swiss farms as long as 2,000 years ago! They caught the attention of American breeders in 1902 when they first showed up in Swiss dog shows.

By the late 1940s, tons of Berners were being imported to the US as pets and working dogs. The AKC adopted its current breed standards in 1990, which led to a boom in popularity. These friendly, fluffy, and happy dogs can be found in homes all over the country today.

Appearance

When comparing the two dogs side by side, you will notice a difference in their sizes. Bernese Mountain Dogs are significantly bigger, at 25-28 inches tall and between 75-115 pounds (males are generally heavier than females). They are generally compared to other large dogs by potential dog owners looking for a larger pup, rather than smaller dogs like the Aussie.

The Australian Shepherds are smaller working dogs. Males stand between 20-23 inches and weigh up to 65 pounds, while females are 18-21 inches tall and weigh 40-55 pounds. It is important to remember that smaller breeds, such as the Miniature Australian Shepherd or Teacup, are not officially recognized HTML1.

Both dogs have a thick, long coat , the Berner’s is thicker and requires more grooming. Australian Shepherds are available in multiple colors, while Bernese Mountain Dogs can be found with a black, brown or white coat.

Temperament

Both of these breeds are social, energetic and friendly — just like most working dogs.

However, Berners have a lower energy than Aussies as they age. They were originally bred to be companion dogs and are extremely affectionate. They love to cuddle their owners, especially children. Adult Berners will not have any trouble sleeping through the afternoon, or relaxing on long car rides.

*Australian Shepherds need lots of exercise every day because they are energetic and high-energy. They are happy to be given a job, no matter if it’s fetching a frisbee or taking a long hike or working on the farm. Although they are friendly to their families and loyal , it might take them a while to get to know new people.

These dogs can be socialized and trained as puppies to become friendly with other dogs at the dog park and in your home. They can chase small animals and cats with their herding instincts, but can be taught to stop this behavior as puppies. To prevent them from chasing, Australian Shepherds will require special training.

Exercise

*Every working dog should get plenty of exercise in order to be healthy. These two breeds are not exceptions. These dogs are not happy to be left alone in the house all day.

An adult Australian Shepherd needs between 30-60 minutes of exercise every day to stay healthy. Dogs love fetch and can even be taught to catch a frisbee. Owners take their Aussies for long runs to burn off energy. However, their instinctive herding instincts mean that it is important to teach them to not chase other dogs while running.

*When training your Aussie to exercise outside, it is a good idea to harness-train them. A harness will make it easier for them to be trained. Just make sure you pick the right-sized harness for the Aussie breed.

Berners should get at least an hour of exercise each day . They can become destructive chewers or digging habits if they don’t get enough exercise. This makes it difficult for them to live in apartments or houses without a yard. Berners love to play fetch, take long walks and play with other dogs at the park.

Training

*)Trainability is one of the greatest advantages of working dogs. You can train a Berner or Australian Shepherd puppy to be the right dog for you and your family.

Let’s begin with Australian Shepherds. These dogs can learn multiple commands and are extremely intelligent. It’s crucial to start training your Aussie as soon as possible and remain consistent. Untrained Australian Shepherds can be stubborn, independent and inclined to run.

You can begin training your Australian Shepherd puppy around seven weeks of age. This includes basic commands such as sit and socialization. To prevent them from biting or chasing, they will require consistent reinforcementmen t. To prevent chewing and mouthiness, Bernese Mountain Dogs

should be taught to puppies. They are smart, but highly responsive , so they can pick up basic commands quickly.

Remember that Berners are about 30-50 pounds heavier than Australian Shepherds, so it’s especially important to train them out of jumping to show affection. If they are well trained and exercised, Berners can be great with children. However, they will jump on children to show affection.

Both breeds require positive reinforcement and verbal commands to be successful in training. Berners are food-motivated so reward them with treats.

Health

Both breeds of dog are active and healthy. Due to their size and certain diseases, Bernese Mountain Dogs have an shorter life expectancy of around eight years.

If you decide to adopt a Berner it is important that they are from a qualified breeder. Irresponsible breeding can lead to serious health issues like hip dysplasia and Von Willebrand’s disease. Your Berner should visit your vet regularly to look for signs of cancer, such as hip and elbow dysplasia and hyperthyroidism.

Berners, like other large dogs are more susceptible to gastric torsion with age. If your Berner is eating too fast, slow-feeding dog bowls can help to prevent this condition.

Australian Shepherds generally can live between 13-15 years when they are well cared for. As your dog gets older, be aware of hip and elbow dysplasia as well as epilepsy as well as cataracts. Australian Shepherds are prone to hearing loss

. and deafness . Although deafness can’t be cured, a dog that is deaf can be trained to live a happy and fulfilling life.

Nutrition

No matter what breed of dog you have, a nutritious and well-rounded diet is essential . Both dogs and their owners will be healthier as they age by eating high-quality dog food.

An Australian Shepherd should eat 1.5-2.5 cups of dry dog food every day, preferably in two meals. Buy food specifically formulated for Bernese Mountain Dogs . Large dogs have different nutritional requirements than smaller breeds. A Berner consumes between 2.5-3 cups of dry food per day.

Both breeds require that you speak to your veterinarian to determine the best nutrition for your dog.

Grooming

When comparing these two dog breeds, it is clear that the Berner requires more grooming than the Aussie.

Berners have long, thick coats to keep them warm in snowy winters. Although their wooly undercoat is soft and fluffy, it can get tangled easily without frequent brushing. Berners shed year-round, so be prepared for the extra fur around your home. Brushing can reduce shed and maintain furniture cleanliness.

While Australian Shepherds are less demanding than other dog breeds, they still require routine grooming. They do shed quite a bit, but because they are smaller than the Berner, it may appear like they shed less. Regular brushing and bathing will keep your Aussies healthy .

Puppy Prices

Are you ready to welcome a new friend into your family? You should make sure you only get your puppy from a licensed and reputable breeder .. Unlicensed breeders and puppy mills often maltreat their dogs and make poor-quality puppies.

Australian Shepherds are slightly more expensive than the other options. Depending on the breeder, a puppy will cost between $600-$1000. Pedigreed Aussies can cost as much as $1800.

Australian Shepherds are very popular and it is not unusual to find one in shelters. Check with your local shelter prior to you shop. A rescue Aussie is just as smart and trainable as a puppy purchased from a breeder.

Bernese Mountain Dogs tend to be less common in the United States, so they are usually more expensive. A pup from a reputable breeder costs $1,000-$2,500, depending on the pedigree. Before you purchase a Berner puppy, make sure that your breeder fully licensed . Unscrupulous breeding can lead to serious health problems in adult dogs.

Final Thoughts

Both of these wonderful breeds are hardworking, social, and energetic. They’re great for active families, and require plenty of space.

Neither one of these dogs is better than the other — it all depends upon your preference. A Bernese Mountain Dog is the perfect choice if you are looking for a loyal, loving dog that will protect your home and take a nap after a long day. Make sure they get enough exercise and you have the space.

An Australian Shepherd is a breed that can play fetch all day and go with you on long hikes or runs. They are less care-intensive than Berners, and have fewer health issues.

No matter what breed you choose, make sure you buy them from a responsible breeder or rescue. These dogs can be wonderful pets if you give them the proper training and lots of love.

Becky Roberts

Becky Roberts

One of Becky's favourite things to do every morning is to browse the top pet-related forums, looking for issues and questions that people have. She then shortlists the most common ones, and turns them into blog posts for Fuzzy Rescue. She's had over 4 cats and 2 dogs over the past decade, so she does know a thing or 2 about raising/training, and more importantly, loving them. She's the only one on our team that doesn't like coffee, but it seems to us she really doesn't need more energy :). We're very fortunate to have her on board as she does most of the heavy listing for the site, outputting an insane amount of content each month. Read More

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