Bernese Mountain Dogs - Breed Information & Education for Puppy Buyers, Owners and Breeders

The Swiss Mountain Dogs & Dog Clubs

The Bernese Mountain Dog is one of four breeds of cattle dogs originating in Switzerland. The Bernese Mountain Dog (Berner Sennenhund, Dürrbächler), the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog (Grosser Schweizer Sennenhund), the Appenzell Mountain Dog (Appenzeller Sennenhunde), and the Entlebucher Mountain Dog breeds are appreciated worldwide for their adaptability, working abilities, and as exceptional companion dogs.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) & Swiss breeds in the United States

The Bernese Mountain Dog is listed as a member of the Working Group by the AKC. Bernese acquired AKC recognition in 1937. The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog was officially granted full recognition in the AKC Working Group in July 1995. The Entlebucher was accepted into AKC in 2011 in the Herding Group.

The Appenzell Mountain Dog is classified by the AKC as FSS® breeds and as such are not eligible for AKC registration. The AKC provides the Foundation Stock Service® service to allow these purebred breeds to continue to develop while providing them with the security of a reliable and reputable avenue to maintain their records. Appenzell Mountain Dogs are approved to compete in AKC companion events including obedience, tracking, agility and rally.

For more information on Swiss Mountain Dogs please visit the following websites. The organizations/association listed below are recognized by the AKC as the official Parent Clubs for their respective breeds.

International Bernese Mountain Dog Club Resources

For a list of International Bernese Mountain Dog Club websites see our Worldwide Bernese Clubs page. It is advisable to contact BMD clubs, protecting the best interests of the BMD in other counties prior to importing a dog. The Fédération Cynologique Internationale is the World Canine Organization. FCI affiliated clubs can provide you with information about BMD clubs and reputable breeders in their respective regions or countries. FCI members can be reached through the following web address: The North American BMD fanciers from the US and Canada, due to our close proximity, have enjoyed a longstanding association including an ongoing exchange of dogs and services. For information on Canadian breeders and clubs please visit the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Canada at

Swiss Breed History

The History and Standard of the Bernese Mountain Dog article located on the BMDCA's website provides insight into breed standards and the original function of the breed.

The Naturhistorisches Museum der Burgergemeinde Bern website contains some breed information and a link to The Albert Heim Foundation website.