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Bergamo Shepherd Dog

Bergamo Shepherd Dog

Country of origin:

Domestic, guard dog

Black, grey, silver fawn, black and brown

Intelligent, determined, hardy, agile, fearless, patient, adaptable, alert

55-61 cm

27-38 kg

12-13 years

Other names:
Bergamask, Bergamasco, Bergamasco Shepherd Dog, Bergermaschi


Litter size:
6-10 puppies

Bergamo Shepherd Dog

The Bergamo Shepherd Dog is a very old breed of dog, currently around two thousand years old. They are very confident, strong and friendly dogs that are eager to get along with people but do not always get along with other animals. The Bergamo Shepherd Dog is intelligent and relatively easy to train, so you can be sure that it will make a really great family friend.

History of the breed

About two thousand years ago, the Phoenicians brought the Longhaired Shepherd Dog to Europe. It is believed that these dogs first arrived in Tuscany and later in Bergamo. Later on, these dogs became popular not only in Italy, but also in France and Spain. These dogs had excellent shepherding qualities – they were entrusted with even very large flocks of sheep. Interestingly, these dogs learned to herd sheep without any special training, which proves once again that the Bergamo Shepherd Dogs are very intelligent dogs. The most famous breeder of Bergamo Shepherds is considered to be the Italian Dr Maria Andreoli, who helped to save the breed from extinction when it lost its popularity. The first Bergamo Shepherds arrived in the USA in 1990, and five years later the first fanciers’ club was founded here. Currently, the breed is quite rare.

Bergamo Shepherd Dog: appearance

The Bergamo Shepherd Dog is a medium-sized dog: the height of the male is 60 cm at the withers, the female about 56 cm. Females are smaller, weighing between 27 and 32 kg (males between 32 and 38 kg). Bergamo Shepherds have a square body, a high and relatively long crest and a body length very close to the height of the dog. The muzzle is exactly the same length as the skull and the head appears large. The muzzle is round and broad, the jaws are very well developed and the bite is scissor-like. The ears are high set and two thirds of the ears are drooping. The eyes are usually brown, but other colours may be present (depending on coat colour). The nose is black and the nostrils are open. Legs are strong and muscular, with oval paws. Tail thick at the base, tapering towards the rear, drooping. Coat dense, long, coarse, rather untidy looking. On the head, the fur is slightly less tangled but also long, covering the eyes. The undercoat is short but very dense. The coat may be solid grey or any shade of grey with grey patches, light brown or yellowish brown is acceptable, and a completely black coat is possible. White is not preferred, but is allowed if it does not cover more than one fifth of the coat.

Bergamot Shepherd Dog: character

The Bergamo Shepherd was bred to herd animals and protect flocks, and is therefore characterised by alertness, guarding, courage and energy. Although Bergamo Shepherds can make excellent watchdogs, they are actually quite peaceful dogs. They are always very gentle with their owners, and they are eager to interact with children. Strangers are not a source of confidence for Bergamo Shepherds, but this breed never shows aggression. Bergamo Shepherds usually get on really well with dogs, but they are not always friendly with cats and other animals. One of the most important characteristics of Bergamo Shepherds is their curiosity: they are always eager to take part in their owners’ activities, and they are constantly watching their family members. It is important to take care of socialisation and basic training at an early age. Bergamo Shepherds are very receptive to training and can learn not only general obedience commands but also

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