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swiss mountain dog ???

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I have loooved this breed for yrs. A friend in Ct has 4 of them and these are well socialized family dogs. Does anybody here have them? Do they do well with chickens? Training is  not an issue, this breed is smart and all of my dogs have been socialized and trained well. (I had a cgc am-staff that used to go to nursing homes with me) My beautiful Mastiff passed away about 2 months ago and I miss having a big dog with me. My son and I  will be living alone shortly, so I was looking at breed choices and thought maybe it was time to take the plunge and find myself a Swissy.  I would love input from swissy owners.

Silkies make me smile
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Silkies make me smile
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post #2 of 13

As in the greater swiss mountain dog?  I don't have one but they are a beautiful and large breed!

"So the writer who breeds more words than he needs, is making a chore for the reader who reads."
"If you never did, you should. These things are fun, and fun is good." All quotes by Dr Seuss!
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"So the writer who breeds more words than he needs, is making a chore for the reader who reads."
"If you never did, you should. These things are fun, and fun is good." All quotes by Dr Seuss!
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post #3 of 13

I have a Bernese Mountain dog named Bishop and he is about 18 months old.  He came from a breeder so has had most of the rampant health issues weeded out of his line.  The biggest problem with these dogs are the health problems (hips, eyes, early cancers) so my recommendation is to spend the extra money to ensure that you have a healthy specimen to start.  Bishop is a lovely dog with a very sweet temperament.  He is great with other dogs, people and children.  I have not had any problems with him and my chickens- they are all frequently out in the yard together- but he seems a little too interested in my geese for my tastes, so he is not allowed into their pen.  He chases squirrels and chipmunks, but otherwise seems uninterested in pursuing prey animals.  He will wander at times, but it is usually to go visiting the neighbors (who love him), never to attack any animals or livestock.  He loves everybody and tends to want to sit on top of your feet- this lack of personal space is common with these dogs.  They like to be as close as possible to their people.  Bishop is possibly the goofiest dog I have ever been around.  He seems to like it when people are laughing at him.  I don't know if that is a breed characteristic or just a Bishop characteristic, but he is a hoot.  Proper diet and exercise are pretty important with these breeds because they have a tendency towards obesity and that's no good with the bigger breeds.  Bloat is a common problem, so food dishes should be elevated.  Bishop is a big old couch potato most of the time, but we have found that a daily walk (on top of his work out on the farm) is important to keep him slim, trim and well-mannered.  He has more instances of wandering if he hasn't had a walk.  BMD's have long hair but SMD's don't, so I will spare you the grooming details.  Extensive grooming for BMD's is necessary and time-consuming.

I love big dogs.  These are some of the best big dogs out there.  I hope we have a long time with Bishop.  Hope this helped and good luck with your decision.

post #4 of 13

Good luck, and I hope the dog adopts you!!!!!!!!!

The irony of life! One day you are the windshield and then the next - the bug!!

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The irony of life! One day you are the windshield and then the next - the bug!!

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post #5 of 13

We have a swissy mix.  He is good with our chickens generally though he did kill one once (I think it was an accidental killing as he hasn't ever shown any interest in the chickens).  We love swissys and don't plan on ever getting another breed in the future.  This is Chewie when he was about 3.5months:

http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h45/IanTavisMom/2008_0421chicks0115.jpg

Heather, full-time farmer and homeschooling Mom to two boys, four dogs, 20 layers, and 17 guineas. We recently relocated to Virginia and are anxious to start our farm back up.
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Heather, full-time farmer and homeschooling Mom to two boys, four dogs, 20 layers, and 17 guineas. We recently relocated to Virginia and are anxious to start our farm back up.
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post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

thanks guys!

CMV, I have done alot of reading about both breeds. I did see the health concerns, so I'll definitely look for a breeder that has had enough litters/longer lineage and testing done.  I was reading how 98 percent of this breed carry the dna for epilepsy... sad... I am familiar with bloat and cancers with the Mastiff, but epilepsy is scary. I was concerned about the heat here in florida, but I have found 5 breeders in the state, so they must be ok, plus, my dogs live in the house.  I love the working dogs that will hang around with you  all day while you work outside, then  come inside and be couch taters. The Bernese would be a dream come true, but I'll wait on that till I move back up north.....someday.

Potterwatch.... that's one cute puppy face.

Silkies make me smile
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Silkies make me smile
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post #7 of 13

I work with a woman who has raised and bred Swissys for years.  She's never had any issues with the dogs and her chickens, but I'm sure it's like any dog and depends on what they're use to how they're raised. smile  Beautiful dogs though and very smart!

post #8 of 13

My husband and I have been looking into getting one also.  I just don't have the $1500 to spend on one they are very expensive and hard to find around us.  Hopefully next summer we will be able to get one!  I talked to a couple breeders and they say prey drive depends on the dog.  Some have higher ones than others.  If you they are a good breeder they should be able to tell the puppies personalities and help you make a decision.  Good luck!

It's supposed to be a challenge, that's why they call it a shortcut. If it was easy it would just be the way.
Life is but a flash of light between two eternities of darkness.
The tongue weighs practically nothing, yet few people can hold it.
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It's supposed to be a challenge, that's why they call it a shortcut. If it was easy it would just be the way.
Life is but a flash of light between two eternities of darkness.
The tongue weighs practically nothing, yet few people can hold it.
Reply
post #9 of 13

A friend of my husband's breeds Bernese Mt Dogs and he has a long waiting list. His dogs have been bought by people all over the world. His dogs have many trophies. http://www.swisskiss-bmd.com
There are very strict guidelines to breeding them.

On the other hand there is a woman around here who got two Burnese Mt  Dogs and bred them without consulting the breed association. Both are not registered animals.
She cannot register them or the puppies and the male dog she imported from a puppy mill in the US. He has personality and health issues but most people don't care, they want the "look". They are getting that and allot of health problems as well.

If you have to manipulate the truth, to be viewed in a better light, you're standing in artificial lighting.--Fred Cuellar
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If you have to manipulate the truth, to be viewed in a better light, you're standing in artificial lighting.--Fred Cuellar
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post #10 of 13

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/30085_no_words_needed.jpg


 

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