Almost immediately after the first Bernedoodle came to be, this breed became a very popular choice for anyone looking for an intelligent, loyal and faithful companion. Bernedoodles are a fun-loving breed of dog whether they’re fetching a ball, running in the backyard with kids, or laying by their master’s feet.
Do Bernedoodles like to swim? Bernedoodles generally like swimming, especially if they’re exposed to it early. A lot of their feelings towards water and swimming come from their parents. Bernese Mountain Dogs aren’t usually huge fans of the water, but Poodles are known to love the water. So if a Bernedoodle inherits more traits from the Bernese side, she might not enjoy the water.
Talking with the breeder can give you better insight into your particular pup or one you might be considering. They should be able to tell you how previous litters have done with water and swimming. Making their first introduction to water enjoyable is huge!
Tips For Introducing Them To Water
Most Bernedoodles enjoy being in the water whether it’s for playing, swimming, catching a Frisbee or just cooling off on a hot day. This love of the water usually comes from the Poodle side of the family because Poodles have always loved the water going back to day one when they were bred to be water retrievers for hunting.
Bernese Mountain Dogs, on the other hand, are not born with an inclination to jump into the water. You can get the Bernedoodle to enjoy the water if they are introduced to it as early as possible before they’ve already told themselves they don’t enjoy or are afraid of the water. Keep in mind that they are half Poodle so it might not take too much convincing! Here are some steps in getting your Bernedoodle to accept and even enjoy the water.
- Basic training – Before you think about introducing the dog to water, make sure the dog understands and follows basic commands like come and stay. If your pup does wander out too far, you want to be assured that he will come when you call him.
- Introduce early – You can begin introducing the dog to water as young as 8 weeks old if he understands simple commands. Start with a small amount of water, say in the bathtub.
- Follow by Example – If you have adult dogs, let the puppy watch the adult dogs go in the water. Their natural curiosity will have them wanting to see why the adults seem to be having so much fun.
- Introduce Slowly – Start the puppy off in just a couple inches of water whether it’s by the shore, in a bathtub or in a kiddie pool. Let the pup go in at a pace that’s comfortable to him.
- Make it Fun – Most of the time when a dog is afraid of the water, it’s because the dog has had an unpleasant experience at one time in his life, and dogs have an excellent and very long memory. Let the dog run through a sprinkler or throw a few chew toys or balls near him in the water.
- Don’t expect too much – Despite what they say about all dogs knowing how to swim, that is not the case. Not all dogs are born swimmers, and not all dogs are going to instantly love the water, but with caution and time, the Bernedoodle usually does enjoy swimming and playing in the water.
Safety For Swimming In Large Bodies Of Water
Regardless of how much your Bernedoodle seems to enjoy the water or how good of a swimmer he appears to be, there is a big difference between swimming in the local pond and swimming in a lake or ocean. There are many dangers for dogs swimming in a large body of water, and safety should always be exercised first and foremost.
Make sure your dog isn’t in deeper water than he can handle and particularly in water with high tides and powerful waves. Your dog may be having so much fun that he won’t know when to quit. Many dogs die every year because they get exhausted from swimming to much and end up with lung infections, inflammation or similar problems.
If the water is cold, don’t allow your dog to just jump in quickly. Make sure he goes in gradually and comes out at the first sign that he’s getting tired. Whether you’re out on the lake swimming or fishing with your Bernedoodle, do not allow him to eat raw fish or other things that may appeal to him.
Keeping Their Ears Safe
Dogs are very susceptible to ear infections, especially when the inside of their ears get wet. When water gets in their ears, they make shake their heads to try to get it out, but they may be only partially successful. If the dog seems to be shaking his head repeatedly, that’s usually a sign that they may have gotten water in their ear canal. The owners need to take precautions to keep the dog’s ears as clean and dry as possible.
There are a couple of preventative measures dog owners can use to keep their Bernedoodle’s ears safe. Wax earplugs have been proven very effective in keeping not just water out of the ear canal but debris and bugs as well. All you need to do is mold them to fit into the dog’s ear, and they’ll prevent a lot of water from entering the ear canal.
The dog barely feels the earplugs, so there is no worry about the dog trying to get them out. Cotton balls can also be used to protect the ears. They’re soft, comfortable and will absorb a lot of the water before it has a chance to get inside the ear. Cotton balls are also easier to insert in the dog’s ear than the moldable earplugs. Which one to use is a matter of personal choice because they both work fairly well.
Once the dog is out of the water, the owner should remove the balls or plugs and thoroughly dry the inside of the ear. There are drying solutions you can buy as well. You just apply a little inside the ear and it helps speed up the drying process. You can also make up your own drying solution by adding 1 teaspoon of water with 1 teaspoon of vinegar. Put this in a small spray bottle, spray it into the dog’s ear, and it will help dry up any remaining water.
Background Of The Bernedoodle
The Bernedoodle dog, also known as Bernese Mountain Poo, is the result of a carefully researched breeding program. Whereas many mixed breed dogs are results of careless or accidental breeding, the Bernedoodle breed was created on purpose. Sherry Rupke of Swiss Ridge Kennels started the Bernedoodle dog breed in 2003. While the mixture of the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog may have happened prior to this time, this was the first time it was done deliberately to create a specific dog.
Sherry felt that both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog had some very good characteristics and believed that breeding the two together would bring out the best in both breeds: intelligence, loyalty, playfulness and gentle temperament all in an allergy-friendly dog. The first breeding resulted in only two black puppies. Since that first breeding, Sherry has continued to fine-tooth the program and focus on specific characteristics, such as beautiful coloring, calm temperament, good health, and excellent conformation.
Swiss Ridge Kennels is no longer the only breeder to create Bernedoodle dogs. Once other breeders realized what a fine dog the Bernese Mountain Dog could be, as well as its monetary value, they also began breeding these dogs. Once the breeders determined that the Bernedoodle dog was rapidly gaining in popularity, they began experimenting with different sizes and coat types. Responsible and dedicated Bernedoodle breeders are now able to breed the dogs for customers who want a certain size Bernedoodle with a specific type and color coat.
Is saltwater bad for a dog’s coat?
Unless the dog is constantly in the water to the point that his skin never has a chance to fully dry out, saltwater usually offers the dog many health benefits. Saltwater or seawater is loaded with many healthy chemicals, which can be helpful in treating dermatitis or other skin conditions. Another advantage of saltwater is that it dries much quicker than freshwater. You’ll probably want to rinse your pup off with some fresh water after, to prevent salt build-up in their coat.
Do they make earplugs for dog swimming?
They do make wax earplugs that owners can mold into the shape and size they need to fit in the dog’s ears. Another product on the market is a neoprene headwrap that goes over the dogs head and covers both ears to protect the dog’s ear canals.
That’s A Wrap!
Bernedoodles are fun-loving dogs that are loaded with energy and need something to stimulate them at all times. They often find the stimulation they need through water sports and games. Whether you’re looking for a hunting dog, a companion, a therapy dog or a family pet, the Bernedoodle dog often fits the bill. With responsible breeding, the Bernedoodle brings out the best of both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog.