San Bernardo
Suiza FCI 61

San Bernardo

The San Bernardo It is very affectionate and has an innate sense of relief especially in the snow.

The San Bernardo It is a breed of dog whose name in other languages: St. Very, Bernhardiner, Chien du Saint-Bernard, Saint Bernard Dog.

According to historians of the race, San Bernardo, descended from the ancient molossians Asian, whose ancestral form was and is represented by the Tibetan Mastiff.

A team of researchers from the University of Manchester, directed by Chris Klingenberg of the Faculty of biological sciences, reviewed 47 San Bernardos skulls donated by Swiss farmers to the Bern Natural History Museum covering a period of 120 years, from modern copies until those old dogs of the time that was initially defined the standard of the breed. It was found that the features stipulated in the standard of the San Bernardo race have become more exaggerated with the passage of time, as breeders chose dogs who had desired physical attributes.

Compared to their ancestors, the modern St. Bernard has a wider skull, the angle between the nose and the forehead more pronounced, and also a more significant bump over the eyes. These changes are described exactly as desired in the breed standards. Clearly, not due to other factors such as overall growth, that they do not provide any physical advantage to the animal, so we can be sure of have evolved only by selective breeders considerations.

This research shows how the selection, either natural or in this case artificially influenced by the man, It is the fundamental driving force behind the evolution of life on the planet.

In the year 923 was born Bernard of Menthon in Menton, region of Savoy (France), which he became Archdeacon of Aosta, in the Italian Alps, dedicated to spreading the Christian faith among the inhabitants of the Alps. In one of these Alpine passes was founded in the year 1049 the Hospice of the Gran San Bernardo, to help, help and shelter to hikers who were the step. The Holy, Catholic scholar and theologian, He was part of the Cistercian order or better known as Trappist, as fellow (the Trappist monks) in Switzerland they had as a companion a dog of this breed around the 16th century.

In the great Mount St mountain pass. Bernhard, to 2.469 meters above the sea level, monks founded in the 11th century, a hospice for travellers and pilgrims. There they raised, Since the mid-17TH century, big mountain dogs for guard and surveillance. The existence of those dogs is documented graphically from 1695 written in a chronicle of the Hospice from the year 1707.

These dogs were soon used as guard dogs and, especially, as rescue dogs for travellers lost in the fog and snow.

There are Chronicles published in many languages over the many lives were saved by these dogs in the “White death” and stories of soldiers who crossed the mountain pass with Napoleon Bonaparte to 1800, in the 19th century, He spread the fame of the Saint Bernard dog throughout Europe.

Already known at the time “Barry Hund“, and the legendary “Barry” He became the symbol of the dog rescue. The direct ancestors of the St. Bernard dog were widespread large size dogs, peasants of the region. These large dogs became only a few generations, an ideal pattern, in the current race.

Following a Congress held international cinológico the 2 in June of 1887, St. Bernard dog was officially recognised as Swiss breed and the breed standard became mandatory. Since then St. Bernard dog was converted in the “Swiss national dog”.

Heinrich Schumacher Holligen, was the first, in 1867 creating genealogical documents for their dogs. In February of 1884 opened the “Schweizerische Hundestammbuch” (Swiss races book, SHSB). The first entry was the dog of St. Bernard's “Leon”, followed by other 28 annotations of St. Bernard dogs. The 15 in March of 1884 was founded the “Schweizerische St. Bernhardsclub” (Swiss Club of the St. Bernard dog) in Basel.

Physical characteristics

San bernardo, is classified in the Group 2: Dog type Pinscher and Schnauzer, Molosoides and mountain dogs and Swiss Boyeros, and other races; section 2; Molossoid, 2.2 Type mountain (without working trial). Of the FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale).

There are two varieties of the dog of St. Bernard:

  • The variety of short hair (Double hair, Stockhaar).
  • The long-haired variety.

Two varieties are of great stature and of a noble general appearance; they have a vigorous body, robust, harmonic and muscular, as well as an imposing head with expression of the face care.

The cross appeal is, minimum of 70 cm for males and 65 cm for females. The FCI standard sets a maximum of 90 cm for males and 80 cm for females (dogs exceeding the maximum height is not devaluarán if its general aspect is harmonic and its proper motion).

In general the size is defined as:

  • Very large“, to be optimal in San Bernardo, When exceeds the 86 cm in males and the 80 cm in females.
  • Large” When going from 82 to 86 cm in males and 75 to 80 cm in females.
  • Media” When going from 78 to 82 cm in males and 70 to 75 cm in females.
  • Small” When going from 70 to 78 cm in males and 65 to 70 cm in females.

"In the"period of gold of the San Bernardo” (1920-1940) were very rarely seen in exposures lower males to 80 Switzerland cm, of Germany, in the Netherlands and the subjects were not so rare above the 90 cm..

Also currently a good San Bernardo for access to the Championship should never be - with some exceptions- below the 80-82 cm and abundant exceed such limit to reach above if the maximum Doge German and Irish Wolfhound is possible but with greater volume, greater length of the trunk and heavier, course.

San Bernardo: Standard FCI



As a whole: Stunning, mass with a strong expression.


  • Skull: Strong and wide. Seen from the front and profile the top part of the skull is slightly domed. When is the dog at attention, the inclusion of the ears is a straight line with the top of the skull which side presents a soft curl towards cheeks high and strongly developed. The inclination from forehead to well steep snout. The occipital Protuberance should shortly be accented. The orbitals above arches strongly developed. Clearly marked front Groove starts on the forehead and extends to the top of the head. Skin from the forehead over the eyes forms slight folds that converge toward the central sulcus. When is the dog at attention, they are usually almost imperceptible.
  • Depression links (Stop): Strongly pronounced.


  • Truffle: Wide and square with well marked angles, well open nostrils. The truffles must be black.
  • Snout: Uniformly wide. Nasal helm straight with a slight furrow in the Center.
  • Belfos: Pigmented edges of black. The belfos of the upper jaw should be highly developed, shoulder straps, but not too pendants; they form a wide arc towards the nose. The corners must be visible.
  • JAWS/teeth: Strong upper and lower jaws, wide and the same length.
  • Bite scissors or well developed clamp, regular and complete. It allows light lower prognathism, provided that the incisors do not lose contact. The absence of the PM1 is tolerated (premolars 1) and the M3.
  • Eyes: Medium-sized, they can be dark brown to hazelnut; moderately sunken. Friendly expression. The edges of the eyelids are completely Pigmented.
  • A full closure is desirable, natural. Is allowed a small fold on the bottom with little visible conjunctival eyelid and a small crease on the upper eyelid.
  • Ears: Medium-sized, high and wide insertion. Highly developed Pavilion. Lobes soft triangle with rounded tip. The back edge is slightly separated from the head, While the above should be set to the cheeks.

NECK: Strong and good long. The double chin neck and throat, moderately developed.


  • As a whole: The general impression should be, harmonica, well muscled and imposing.
  • Cross: Well developed.
  • Back: Wide, powerful and strong. The topline is straight and level until the lumbar region.
  • Rump: Long, slightly descending with a harmonious transition to the insertion of the tail.
  • Breast : Moderately deep chest with well sprung ribs, but not abarriladas. You must not get below the elbows.
  • Abdomen and bottom line: Slight upward backward.

TAIL: Of wide and strong base, It should be long and heavy.

  • The last vertebra should reach at least the articulation of the Hock. At rest should hang straight or slightly curved upward in the last third. In State care may be higher.


Former members:

  • As a whole: Seen from the front, rather wide position. Members must be straight and parallel.
  • Shoulder: Inclined scapula, muscular and firmly attached to the body.
  • Arm: As long as the scapula. The angle between the scapula and the arm must not be too open.
  • Elbow: Close to the body.
  • Forearm: Straight, strong bone and muscles dry.
  • Metacarpus: Seen from the front must be vertical in its extension to the forearm. Viewed laterally must be slightly oblique.
  • Front feet: Widths, with strong fingers, together robust and highly arched.

Later members:

  • As a whole: Moderately angled rear limbs and muscled. Seen from the rear must be parallel and not together.
  • Thigh: Robust, muscular and wide.
  • Knee: Well angled and not turn inward or outward.
  • Leg: Fairly long and oblique.
  • Hocks: Moderately angled and strong.
  • Metatarsals: Seen from the back as straight and parallel.
  • Back feet: Widths, with strong fingers, together robust and highly arched. The Spurs are tolerated if not they interfere with normal movement.

MOVEMENT: Harmonic, long steps. Good push from the hind limbs. The back remains firm and stable.
Anterior and posterior members must move in a straight line when walking.


  • Short hair (Double hair): Dense outer layer, smooth and stuck to the body. Internal NAP thick. Thighs with fringes of not very notable hairs. Tail with thick hair.
  • Long hair: Outer layer of hairs of medium length, smooth. Abundant internal NAP. On the hip and rump, the hair can be somewhat wavy. Thighs with fringes of abundant hair and forelimbs with flags. Face and ears with short hair. Tail with abundant bushy hair.

COLOR: The basic color is white with reddish brown spots smaller or larger (spotted dogs), to form a continuous blanket of uninterrupted reddish brown on the back and flanks (dogs with mantle). This mantle interrupted by white veins have the same value. The reddish brown tabby is allowed. The yellowish-brown is tolerated. The dark brown on the head is much appreciated. Will tolerate some light traces of black color on the body.

  • Major brands: Sill, feet, the tail, nose cane, headband and nape.
  • Desirable markings: White collar.
  • Dark mask symmetrical.


Minimum height:

  • Males: 70 cm..
  • Females: 65 cm..

Maximum height:

  • Males: 90 cm..
  • Females: 80 cm..
  • Dogs exceeding the maximum height is not devaluarán in its judging if their general appearance is harmonious and correct movement.

FAULTS: Any deviation from the above mentioned criteria is considered as missing and the gravity of this is considered in proportion to the degree of deviation to the standard and its consequences on the health and well-being of the dog.

  • Characteristics of sex not developed sufficiently.
  • Non-harmonic overall appearance.
  • Very short relative to the height of the cross member.
  • Excess of folds in head and neck.
  • Muzzle too long or too short.
  • Pendants and returned lower jaw belfos out.
  • Lack of teeth (except the PM1 and the M3) ; small teeth (especially the incisors).
  • Slight lower prognathism.
  • Clear eyes.
  • Eyelids too loose.
  • Back saddle or in tent.
  • Rump too high or too fall.
  • Tail coiled on top of the back.
  • Absence of white markings deemed important.
  • Curved or very returned former members out.
  • Later in the form of Coop members, of “X”, or too straight.
  • Faulty movement.
  • Curly hair.
  • Incomplete or lack of it in the truffle pigmentation, belfos, eyelids and around the nose.
  • Wrong basic color, small splashes or spots of wetwood color on white.


  • Fearful dogs, aggressiveness.
  • Upper prognathism, marked lower prognathism.
  • Blue eyes.
  • Entropion, ectropion.
  • Completely white or completely brown reddish coat (absence of the basic color).
  • Coat of a different color.
  • Dogs that do not reach the minimum height.
  • Any dog showing clear physical abnormalities or behavioral signs shall be disqualified.

NOTE: Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles, fully descended into the scrotum.

  • This revised standard shall be applicable from April 2004.

TRANSLATION: Brigida Nestler.

Character and skills

San Bernardo is a large dog, elegant and strong, Extrovert, his appearance is friendly, peaceful, is a dog “debonair“. Generally gentle and affectionate, He is very loyal and devoted to their masters.

It is especially suitable for children by those who feel special attraction, so it received the nickname of “MINDER dog”. It is large enough to protect measured aggression.

It is a dog of a quiet nature, quiet but cheerful, the relationship with the children is excellent.

His company and joy are favorable for health. You need two fundamental things in care: Clean them ears and remove them the laganas.

They bring much love in the family. It is a very jealous breed with their owners, they might attack if they were seen at risk, and love the children.

It is a dog needing care in its fur, especially in the face, eyes and eyelids, you need to do exercise (without exceeding) and space. It needs to receive love, like all animal.

Images of San Bernardo
Videos del San Bernardo

  • Otros nombres: St. Bernhardshund / Bernhardiner / Chien du Saint-Bernard / Saint Bernard Dog.
  • Group 2 / Section 2 – Molosoides and mountain dogs.

Dogs breeds: San Bernardo

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