The Saint Berdoodle or the “Saint Berpoo” is a cross of two purebred dogs, the Saint Bernard and the Poodle. Owning one is like having a living and breathing version of a giant stuff toy. It’s fluffy, adorable, and irresistible! Learn about tips in raising one, should you decide to adopt or buy a Saint Berdoodle soon.
As a relatively new crossbreed, the year of origin of the Saint Berdoodle is still unknown but it’s believed that it was first bred in the United States in the 1980s. However, the Saint Bernard and Poodle have a long and interesting history. Saint Bernards were originally bred as rescue dogs in Italy while Poodles descended from Germany as water dogs.
Although you cannot register it to major dog clubs like the American Kennel Club, this designer breed can be registered in hybrid dog registries. It is eligible for full registration and pedigree services at the International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR).
Apart from IDCR, organizations like the American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Dogs Kennel Club, Designer Breed Registry, and the Dog Registry of America also recognize this crossbreed.
It’s a result of pairing a Saint Bernard to a Standard Poodle. The intent of breeding them is to produce non-shedding dogs like the Poodles. If you ever saw a smaller variety, this is likely a Mini Saint Berdoodle which is a result of breeding a miniature poodle and a Saint Bernard.
Do note that not all Saint Berdoodles came from first generation or F1. Some breeders produce multiple generations of Doodles, which is either more of a Poodle or more of a Saint Bernard’s gene.
The Saint Berdoodle is a giant dog like the Saint Bernard. It can grow anywhere between 110-160 pounds and 24-27 inches tall on average. It may share many physical traits with the Saint Bernard but it has the coat texture of a Poodle.
Because the majority of them only shed lightly, this breed is suitable for pet owners with allergies to pets. Heavy shedding is actually a problem among Saint Bernards, that’s why many people think twice before adopting or buying them.
This crossbreed is ideal for people who are longing for a Saint Bernard but want a dog that does not shed a lot. Saint Berdoodles have a low to moderate shedding level, especially if the pup has more of the Poodle gene.
Otherwise, you might need to keep your vacuum and grooming tools in handy. If your pup’s coat resembles the Saint Bernard’s one, there is a great chance it will shed profusely. Don’t worry, though, because there are a lot of tools, like a de-shedding tool that will make your job easier.
Vacuum three times a week and get rid of pet hair using rubber gloves. Besides, it is not the pet hair that could make you sneeze or have skin rashes. It’s dander or dead skin from the dog’s skin that causes humans to be allergic to pets.
Meanwhile, their coat colors will depend on its parents, because the Saint Bernard and the Poodle come in a range of coat colors. However, the most common color among this mix is white with either black or brown markings.
Your Saint Berdoodle only needs a bath a few times a year. Because they are hardly energetic, they rarely get soiled. They are also too big that you might find it tricky to bathe them safely. But should you decide to give your Saint Berdoo his full bath, do it outdoors and, much better, in a huge bathtub that fits them.
Clipping its hair will be recommended if the Saint Berdoodle got the coat of its Poodle parent. This way, the hair could keep on growing all year round. If it has the Saint Bernard’s coat, which is either smooth or rough, you have to brush it at least twice a week. This is to ensure that the coat will always look healthy and shiny.
The Saint Berdoodle is an extremely friendly and playful dog that makes it ideal as a family pet, especially for households with young children. Many of them have developed such a strong bond with their humans that they find it hard to be separated from them.
A fun-loving mix, this dog will not mind being the center of attention. Cuddly as they are, these dogs would love hugs and lots of loving from their humans. They are among the sweetest crossbreeds out there.
A Saint Berdoodle will please you with its loyalty and affection. Although they are giant dogs, they don’t frighten people because they have a charming physique that attracts the people they meet. They can be slightly intimidating due to their size but they don’t have a fierce look to keep people away.
They rarely bark, but when they do, it can be because they are just alerting their owners of something. This is just one proof of their loyalty towards their owners. It could be their warning when an intruder comes, although they will not really show aggression. They can be great watchdogs too due to their protective nature.
Saint Berdoodles are highly intelligent dogs, which is favorable for pet owners who want an easy to train dog. They learn quickly which means you don’t need to keep repeating what you said for them to learn a new trick. Just always be firm so your pet will be encouraged to learn a new skill.
The only challenge you will encounter with this crossbreed is their clinginess. They love to be around their humans so they might find it hard to adjust when you decide to leave them for a while. The best way to prevent this from happening is to provide early socialization so your pet will be used to the people around him and not just you.
As with any large dog, the Saint Berdoodle has a short lifespan of six to 10 years, on average. Keep an eye for the following hereditary conditions a Poodle and a Saint Bernard could pass on to its pup:
- Distichiasis – it is one of the eyelash problems found in canines. This happens when an eyelash grows from an abnormal eyelid spot. While it is often resolved by plucking, there are other treatments available, like applying a lubricating gel, cryosurgery, and electroepilation.
- Gastric Torsion – also known as bloating, this refers to the twisting of the stomach because it is filled with gas. There are a lot of possible causes for bloating, but the common ones involve dietary factors. Dogs eating only once per day are at risk for bloating. Hence, a dog’s meal should be served in portions and at regular intervals during the day. For instance, you may offer 2-3 cups per serving three times a day.
- Elbow Dysplasia – this occurs when there is a growth disturbance in a dog’s elbow joint. The multiple abnormalities in his elbow area can cause pain in a dog especially in the advanced stages of the condition. Dogs with this inherited disorder are usually prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs. Apart from it, a range of motion activities can prevent further damage in the dog’s elbows.
- Sebaceous Adenitis – it is a type of rare inflammatory skin disease affecting the skin’s sebaceous glands. Topical medications are prescribed to get rid of any scale or crust on the dog’s skin. A vet may also recommend putting a dog on systemic therapy to lessen the inflammation of the sebaceous glands.
- Cataracts – if inherited, this may occur at birth although in many cases it will only show when the dog is 12 weeks old and above. Other possible causes of canine cataracts are old age and eye trauma and is also a problem commonly faced by diabetic dogs. It is characterized by cloudy eyes. Though it looks like a dog can still see well, it does not mean it does not have cataracts so better have him checked early.
For large dogs weighing 110-160 pounds, it is recommended to serve a minimum of six cups of food per day. The ideal amount is actually 6 and ¾ cups for a 100 lbs dog and half a cup for every 10 pounds added. So if your Saint Berdoodle weighs 120 lbs, the recommended amount for him is 7 and ¾ cups of food.
If you wish to feed your pet exclusively dog food, get a combination of wet and dry formulas. Because these mixes are quite prone to induce bloating, it helps to at least moisten up their meals. Dry food is one of the usual causes of bloating in canines. More importantly, make sure they are well-hydrated at all times.
As with any dog, a Saint Berdoodle thrives on a high-protein and low-carbohydrate diet. Your buddy needs to consume a good amount of easily digestible proteins, which may come from animal or plants. For animal-based proteins, stick to high-quality meats like lamb, chicken, and lean beef.
If you want to offer plant-based proteins, consider offering them gradually as to not cause gastrointestinal distress in your dog. Plant-based protein sources like beans, quinoa, oatmeal, and potatoes can be offered in small amounts. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals that can help a growing dog.
Not all human foods are dog-friendly, though. Not all fruits are safe for dogs and grapes are considered to be toxic. When giving fruits with pits like mangoes, make sure the dog will only consume the flesh because the seed can cause intestinal obstruction.
When you are in the process of transitioning from formula to human food, ask for your vet’s advice first. A vet will evaluate your pet’s needs based on his activities, his size, and his current health condition. If your pet has an overly sensitive stomach, it helps to have him checked first before deciding to modify his diet.
Many Saint Berdoodles are couch potatoes. If they are not sleeping, you will find them laying on the porch and observing people in the house. Because they are quite lazy to move around, a 20-minute walk each day will be fine for them. A common trait among Saint Berdoodles is sleeping right after a walk. That’s how laid-back they usually are!
Although it’s rare, there are actually days when they are more energetic than usual. If this happens, use the opportunity to explore the neighborhood. The Saint Berdoodle cannot tolerate cold weather as much as Saint Bernards do, so better avoid going on walks when it’s a bit cold outside. This one actually thrives in a slightly warm place.
Reminders before Getting a Saint Berdoodle
Think long before getting a Saint Berdoodle. Decide if it’s the pet that will fit the kind of lifestyle that you have before finding a reliable breeder near you. Just a heads up, it matters to visit a kennel first so you will get to know in what kind of environment the dogs were raised before they are handed to you.
Is the environment free from odor? Can you see that every part of the facility is well-maintained and clean? If so, then proceed to the more important part like asking for health certificates of the dog. This is important because it tells about any inherited flaw a dog can possibly have.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions, especially if it’s the first time you own a Saint Berdoodle. A good breeder will always welcome curious pet owners, anyway, because it’s a sign that they are truly interested in the dog.
A Saint Berdoodle is a gentle giant that sheds low to moderately. It’s large but it is very friendly and that’s a good reason to keep one as a family pet. So if you are thinking of adopting or buying your Saint Berdoodle, go ahead and have one! They are not just obedient and kind dogs. They are also loyal, affectionate, and intelligent.