ABOUT BERNESE MOUNTAIN DOGS
It is thought that the Bernese are an ancient breed probably originating from the large Mastiff type dogs that crossed the Alps with the Roman Legions and used for driving the herds and protecting the camps. These dogs probably bred with local dogs whose origins around the Swiss Lake area date back to Neolithic times. The breed was named Berner Sennunhund (Bernese Alpine Herdsman’s Dog) after the Swiss Canton of Bern where it originated, and Senn, the Swiss name for an Alpine herdsman. These dogs were used for driving herds to pasture and market, pulling heavy carts with milk churns, cheese and other farm produce. Affectionately known as “Berners”, they are a large, sturdy long haired dog with a striking appearance. They have a tricolour markings, with a mainly black coat, a large white chest blaze and tan and white markings on the face and legs. They can appear imposing, with some male dogs weighing over 50kgs but their friendly, social disposition makes them wonderful companions. Their gentleness and intelligence allows them to be trained as Delta dogs, assistance and therapy dogs. They also perform search and rescue duties. They love human companionship and want to be part of a family so are not dogs to be left outside and ignored. They are affectionate, loving, loyal, intelligent and have a calm and tolerant disposition with children. While they are a versatile breed that is involved in obedience work, herding, tracking, carting and confirmation, they are just as happy going to the park, the beach or just lounging around watching television with their human family.
BERNESE MOUNTAIN CLUB OF QUEENSLAND
The BMD Club of Queensland was inaugurated in August 1999 at the Zeigen Kennels in Toowoomba. Almost sixty adults, several children and more than forty Bernese Mountain Dogs were in attendance. Reporters from ABC TV attended on the day, filming and interviewing owners with their dogs. For the past eighteen years, the club has provided support and friendship to Berner owners through social activities and the availability of experienced owners to provide advice and guidance for responsible Berner ownership.
Club members meet officially four times a year usually at recreational parks or a member’s home. This allows members to discuss club business while having a great social day out. All Berners and owners are welcome and generally there is a large collection of dogs of all ages and owners with puppies always attracting extra attention. These meetings allow information sharing, advice for anyone having issues and for those whose Berners have crossed the rainbow bridge, consolation and comfort from other members of the club. Club members also celebrate our “oldies” when Berners reach the age of 10years by awarding the Golden Oldie Medal”.
As our members are scattered all over South East Queensland, they cannot always attend meetings so the Club has been utilising Facebook and email as a way of keeping in touch. Members regularly add photos of their dogs and new puppies, advise of any issues such as illness or injuries, report their missing dogs and request help in searches, and promote products they have found useful for their dogs. Health advice is also a popular topic discussed on the Facebook site. Club members are currently developing a Website which will allow greater access for both members and the general public to obtain information about this beautiful breed.
Aims of the BMD Club of QLD
Showcase the characteristics of the breed. Loving, Loyal, Gentle, Strong.
Promote responsible Berner ownership by encouraging the early introduction to Dog Obedience training, appropriate nutrition, exercise and grooming.
Promote dog ownership by participating in events such as Pet Expo and the Brisbane Dog Lovers Show. Provide the public with information about what to expect when living with and loving a Bernese Mountain Dog.
Promote the proper care of all animals by supporting organisations such as the RSPCA Million Paws Walk
Provide rescue and rehoming of Berners who have been abandoned or are no longer able to be cared for by their owners. The club raises money at meetings so this service can be provided in case veterinary care is required.
Encourage and support owners who enter confirmation competitions and help cheer them on at shows such as the EKKA.
Stand Number: B160