St. Bernard

St. Bernards have their own museum in Switzerland, close to the hospice at the Great St. Bernard Pass, where one dog, Barry (1800 – 1814), reportedly saved 40 lives.

About the St. Bernard

St. Bernards are friendly giants of a generally calm disposition but not lacking in energy despite their imposing stature. For over a century they have been the best known and the most popular of the mountain breeds.

There are two varieties: the shorthair has a dense, smooth, close-lying coat, while the longhair has a straight, medium-length topcoat, again with an abundant undercoat.

Source: key facts and characteristics sourced from Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)

Breed specifics

FCI Group 2, AKC Working Group
Size category
Very large
Avg life expectancy
8–10 years

Friendly / Calm / Lively / Alert

Key facts

  • Makes a great guard dog
  • Requires moderate grooming
  • Requires outdoor space