Bernese Mountain Dog vs German Shepherd

Breed Snapshot

Life Expectancy:
7 to 10 years
Size:

Extra Large

Maintenance Level:

High

Shed Level:

High

Best For

Bernese Mountain Dogs are best for active homes with lots of opportunities for outdoor exercise and play. Berners thrive in cold climates but can do OK in warmer weather with lots of shade and AC....

Bernese Mountain Dogs are best for active homes with lots of opportunities for outdoor exercise and play. Berners thrive in cold climates but can do OK in warmer weather with lots of shade and AC. They're kid-friendly, though younger dogs may need supervision due to the breed's large size and weight.

Bernese Mountain Dog Temperament

Bernese Mountain Dogs have an affectionate temperament, making them great as a pet. Give your Berner lots of attention. This isn’t a dog who wants to be left alone in your yard outside. They might get bored and start barking at the birds to keep themselves entertained! Berners als...

Bernese Mountain Dogs have an affectionate temperament, making them great as a pet. Give your Berner lots of attention. This isn’t a dog who wants to be left alone in your yard outside. They might get bored and start barking at the birds to keep themselves entertained! Berners also love to explore, so take them with you on your adventures. And at the end of the day, they’ll love nothing more than to cuddle up with you, enjoying the quiet times as much as they enjoy playtime.

These dogs also are smart and eager to please. Bred to be working dogs, they thrive with structured games or sports. Although they’re not the high-energy type like a Border Collie or Jack Russell Terrier, they still need daily exercise to meet their energy level needs. They’ll love activities like carting, drafting, herding, agility sports or scent work.

Although the Bernese breed is a powerful, large dog, they’re also docile and sweet. They have a lot of patience and are known to be good with children. Like many dogs, however, they might be cautious or shy around strangers or in new situations. That’s why it’s so important to socialize them as puppies. Because they’re big, they might forget their own strength, especially when they’re younger than 3 or 4 years old and feeling extra playful. So, it’s good to keep an eye on younger Berners when they’re with kids and babies or smaller pets like cats. But overall, they’re really quite calm and sweet-tempered.

Bernese Mountain Dog Traits

Friendliness
Exercise Needs
Health Issues
Barking Tendencies
Grooming Needs
Shedding Level
Training Needs
Good With Kids
Good With Cats
Good As A Service Dog
Good For Apartments & Small Homes
Biting Tendencies
Energy Level
Good With Other Dogs
Playfulness
Sensitive to Cold Weather
Sensitive to Warm Weather
Good For First Time Pet Parents

Breed Snapshot

Life Expectancy:
12 to 14 years
Size:

Large

Maintenance Level:

High

Shed Level:

Very High

Best For

German Shepherds are best for active households and experienced pet parents who are ready to train this highly-active pup.

German Shepherd Temperament

Born guardians, the German Shepherd’s best trait is their intense, unwavering loyalty to their families. (There’s a reason they make some of the best police dogs.) The fearless breed has also been known to put themselves in harm’s way before they let a family member get hur...

Born guardians, the German Shepherd’s best trait is their intense, unwavering loyalty to their families. (There’s a reason they make some of the best police dogs.) The fearless breed has also been known to put themselves in harm’s way before they let a family member get hurt.

Not surprisingly, friendliness is not the German Shepherd dog breed’s strong suit. They can be aloof, and you definitely have to earn their trust. Naturally wary of strangers, a German Shepherd will default to “guard dog mode” if they believe their family is in danger.

Early social interactions with kids, babies and other animals is also important if you want your German Shepherd to be well-behaved around guests. With the proper education, this easy-to-train pup can be a great family dog.

German Shepherds are born talkers. They will bark when they’re bored, and they’ll bark to alert you if something isn’t quite right. But training and exercise can help curb a lippy pup and keep their barking to when you need it the most.

These dogs are incredibly smart, and they are at their best when they have a job to do, whether working as a police or military dog, doing tracking or search and rescue, serving as a guide dog or at home practicing scent work or solving puzzles for a treat. And when they’re with their family, German Shepherds will let their silly side show as they flip their toys in the air and roll around on their backs.

German Shepherd Traits

Friendliness
Exercise Needs
Health Issues
Barking Tendencies
Grooming Needs
Shedding Level
Training Needs
Good With Kids
Good With Cats
Good As A Service Dog
Good For Apartments & Small Homes
Biting Tendencies
Energy Level
Good With Other Dogs
Playfulness
Sensitive to Cold Weather
Sensitive to Warm Weather
Good For First Time Pet Parents
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