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Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

General Description

As the name suggests, the Great Swiss Mountain dog is the largest of the Swiss herding breeds and the heaviest in build. He shares the exact origins as the Bernese and carries the typical tricolor markings, but he has a short dense coat and is perhaps a little heavier in the head.

General Health

They include hip and elbow dysplasia, other orthopedic problems such as panosteitis and osteochondritis dissecans of the shoulder, an eye disease called distichiasis, gastric torsion, epilepsy, and urinary incontinence in females.

Character and Temperament

Self-confident, alert, fearless, devoted, good-natured and protective


The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog requires moderate exercise. A walk around the block or a romp in the woods generally will satisfy their daily exercise needs. This breed is much better suited for the person looking for a hiking companion than the person wanting a bicycling or marathon-running partner.


Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are almost certainly the result of indigenous dogs mating with large mastiff-type dogs brought to Switzerland by foreign settlers. At one time, the breed was believed to have been among the most popular in Switzerland.

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