Since a Saint Bernard is destined to be a very large dog, and grows in an extremely short time, it is best to get a handle on the socialization and training of your family pet at a very early age. It is recommended not to waste any time introducing your Saint Bernard to new experiences that involve unfamiliar people, animals, and situations. Obedience is beneficial in any domesticated animal; it is crucial in an animal that will eventually outweigh most members of your family.
Finding reputable breeders from which to purchase a Saint Bernard puppy is something that will require patience and diligence. In the long run the pay off will be well worth the wait, when you have a Saint Bernard as part of your family the fun, laughter, and memorable challenges will be plentiful.
As a show dog, any Saint Bernard whose height stays within proportion to its weight is a candidate for showmanship. Two types of topcoats exist for full-bred Saint Bernards. Rough and smooth coats both are very dense. Saint Bernard, also known in some areas as, Saint Barnhardshun, Alpine Mastiff, or Bernhardiner, are strong, muscular animals with a powerful neck and head.
Most people know the Saint Bernard as the dogs that rescue people from avalanches. These strong and loyal animals are indeed lifesavers. Their strong sense of smell enables them to find avalanche victims who are buried far beneath the snow. As a trained search and rescue team Saint Bernards will find a fallen person and while one canine leaves to retrieve human help the other, with its large body, will lend much needed warmth for the victim. Typically a Saint Bernard not only has the ability to rescue people once an avalanche has occurred, they also have a strong sense of impending avalanche activity, a sixth sense if you will, that is important to humans.
In that they have the patience and caring for rescue missions, Saint Bernards are gentle giants and can be trusted around children as well. Their tolerant, docile, and friendly nature makes them an excellent candidate to be included in any family no matter how many or what ages the children or elderly family members might be.
The Saint Bernard is an excellent watchdog. The mere size of a full-grown Saint Bernard is often effective in deterring most unsavory activity in or around your home or on your property. As with any dog breed there are health concerns. One health concern typically related to larger canine breeds is hip dysplasia. Saint Bernard's drool, every last one of them. Make certain you factor that into any decision you may make of owning a Saint Bernard. It has been recommended to feed a Saint Bernard two smaller meals in one day rather than one large as they can bloat easily and suffer from twisted stomachs.
Overall Saint Bernard's can live comfortably in an apartment as long as they get a few long walks in everyday they are healthy. With a life expectancy of eight to ten years, the Saint Bernard is a welcomed member to any family.