AKC PuppyFinder: Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Puppies
- Breed Traits
- Personality: Faithful, dependable, family oriented; Swissies are famously even-tempered
- Energy Level: Somewhat Active; Mellow around the house, but these blue-collar bruisers enjoy hard work
- Good with Children: Yes
- Good with other Dogs: With Supervision
- Shedding: Seasonal
- Grooming: Occasional
- Trainability: Responds Well
- Height: 25.5-28.5 inches (male), 23.7-27 inches (female)
- Weight: 115-140 pounds (male), 85-110 pounds (female)
- Life Expectancy: 8-11 years
- Barking Level: Barks When Necessary
- Breed Description
If you're thinking of adding a Greater Swiss Mountain Dog puppy to your family, keep in mind that the stocky pup could grow to stand almost 3 feet tall and outweigh an average human. These strong working dogs were bred as drovers and combine the confidence and robustness needed for the job with a friendly, even-tempered personality. They love having a job to do, such as carting, herding or weight-pulling and enjoy hiking and backpacking with the family. They can also be protective watchdogs, so start training and socializing your Greater Swiss Mountain Dog early, while he's still a manageable size.
- History & Job
Year Recognized: 1995
Breed History & Job Description: Swissies descend from war dogs brought over the Alps by Julius Caesar’s legions. The Swiss utilized these mastiff-types when breeding their Alpine mountain dogs, or Sennenhund. Of these, Swissies are the oldest and the largest (or, the “greater”). In remote mountain passes they toiled as all-around farm-and-pasture hands, specializing in hauling loads of meat and dairy to market in smartly outfitted dogcarts. The Greater Swiss is closely related to the Bernese Mountain Dog and is a component breed of the Saint Bernard and Rottweiler.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are generally a healthy breed. Like all breeds there may be some health issues, like hip and elbow dysplasia and eye disease. GSMDs may be affected by bloat, a digestive disorder of the stomach. Some dogs may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are healthy dogs. Because of the breed's characteristic large size, black color and thick undercoat, Swissies do not tolerate high temperatures well. If exercised for prolonged periods in hot, sunny conditions, a GSMD can fall prey to heat prostration or heatstroke. During the summer months, walks and other exercise should be planed for either early or late in the day, avoiding the hottest midday hours. A Swissy should have a sheltered place to escape from the heat of the day, and in some areas the only suitable daytime refuge may be inside an air-conditioned house.
Read the Official Breed Club Health Statement.
Recommended Health Tests from the National Breed Club:
- Hip Evaluation
- Elbow Evaluation
- Shoulder Evaluation
- Ophthalmologist Evaluation
- Breed Club