Breed Type: Herding
Country of Origin: Switzerland
Also known as: Entlebucher Sennenhund, Entlebucher Cattle, the Entlebucher
Males: Height: 43-53 cm Weight: 27- 29 kg
Females: Height: 41-51 cm Weight: 24-27 kg
Exercise Requirements: Vigorous
Care Requirements: Low
Lifespan: 10-12 Years
Best Suited as: Working Dog, Family Pet
Entlebucher Mountain dogs originated in Switzerland and are the smallest type of the Swiss Mountain breeds distinguished as tri-colored. Rarely are they found outside of Switzerland, but they are very popular within the country. These are strong, intelligent dogs enough strength to deal with larger animals, but also agile enough to move with haste as needed. Entlebuchers are a challenging choice for those new to dog owning because they possess a strong-willed nature but otherwise are simple to train and have great personalities. They also possess high energy levels and love outdoor activities and do well as active companions with a strong desire to please, easily trained for hunting purposes and just as happy working with livestock or pulling carts. Entlebuchers do not care for strangers but are loyal and steadfast with their owners.
The Entlebucher Mountain dogs have a similar appearance to the Greater Swiss Mountain dogs and the Rottweiler breed. They are medium to large in size with a powerful and stocky build. The Entlebucher weighs between 24-29 kilograms with an average height of 41-53 centimeters. The males are usually larger than the females as with most other dogs. Their individual sizes will lean towards more agility on the smaller end of the scale to more strength on the larger end. They are very muscular in appearance with wide hip placement and a deep, powerful chest.
Their coat is very short and usually tri-colored with black, tan, and white. The white has a symmetrical uniform appearance on the face, chest, feet, and muzzle while the brown color tones are found on the eyebrows and between the white and black areas on the rest of the shiny coat. They have a double-layered coat with the undercoat being very thick and dense in order to protect it from the harsh elements of an Alpine winter.
Entlebuchers’ tails are naturally long with a white tip unless docked as is common for this breed. Very alert brown eyes expressive and friendly are exhibited in thoroughbreds while yellow eyes are seen as a fault to the breed as are the lack of an undercoat and a disproportionately sized jaw.
Entlebuchers have a sweet nature that is friendly and social with friends and loved ones. They are very intelligent with an easy-going nature that works well with children and cattle alike. They love the outdoors and anything they can do outside is great. They strike an excellent balance between play and work and have the stamina and desire to finish any job they are given. Entlebuchers love people and want close companionship with their owners but are also confident and independent as needed to complete any task. They should not be left unattended for long periods of time as loneliness and boredom trigger undesirable activities. Their highly active energy levels do not decrease as they mature, so Entlebuchers are best for families that are also highly energetic and active.
Very loyal and protective instinctively, care needs to be taken in socializing Entlebuchers from puppyhood in order to balance out their natural distrust and suspicion of strangers which is a good trait when kept balanced with social interactions with visitors to the home. Even though devoted and protective, Entlebuchers do not tend to be aggressive but will protect their loved ones if challenged to do so. They are excellent as children companions and watch dogs as they stay very alert with a strong bark of warning to any threats while also able to be playful and safe when interacting with children.
Though originating from Switzerland, Entlebucher Mountain Dogs have ancestry that can be traced back to the Molosser breed of ancient Rome specifically suggested by their mastiff-like physical features, as the Molossers are mastiffs. Entlebuchers were considered the same breed as the Appenzeller Sennenhunde and weren’t differentiated from them until the early 1900’s.
Entlebucher Mountain dogs almost became extinct after World War I because they were crossbred so much with German Shepherds and other dogs imported to the region after the war. However, Professor Albert Heim valued the pureness of the Entlebuchers and was able to revive the breed so their unique characteristics can still be enjoyed today although rarely are outside of Switzerland. Entlebuchers were used primarily for herding livestock in the Alpine Mountains of Switzerland and still do so in the present age.
Care and Grooming:
The low level of grooming needs also help make Entlebuchers a great working dog. They only need to be brushed well every few weeks in order to maintain a healthy coat but will need more frequent brushing during the spring and summer because of their propensity for shedding. Entlebuchers only need a bath every now and then unless muddy or otherwise dirty.
The Entlebucher Mountain dog is a strong and healthy breed with a typical lifespan of 10-12 years. However, crossbreeding and inbreeding has left them with genetic tendencies for hip dysplasia, anemia, and eye problems. Those traits are currently the focus of both genetic testing and selective breeding with the hope of eventually lessening or eliminating the disease tendencies.
Suitability as a Pet:
Their strength and endurance allows them to be particularly suited for herding cattle, while their loyal and protective characteristics make them great guard dogs. They also love being a part of any physical activity outdoors so make great hiking companions and children’s companions. If living in the city, Entlebuchers need to have more exercise than just the casual daily walk. They need activity that is more physically demanding in order to work off their boundless energy. They love to herd anything whether its cattle or people on nature hikes. They enjoy playing with other dogs so having a daily time to wrestle with other dogs within the safety of backyards or a dog park is great. They do not do well living in apartments or other cramped environments. They need plenty of space in order to be happy.
Training Entlebuchers should include vigorous exercise and they love to learn physical tricks such as jumping, agility races, or even things like Frisbee and football. They are easily trained for canine sports or anything requiring intelligence and stamina, but their strong-wills can be a challenge to those unfamiliar with dog training needs and techniques. Entlebuchers have a high threshold for pain which is only one reason physical punitive measures do not work with them and should not be used with them (or any other breed for that matter). They thrive on positive reinforcement techniques that focus on consistency and praise with plenty of treats.
Entelbuch Mountain Dog or Entelbucher Sennenhund Organisations in Australia
No club information listed
Entelbuch Mountain Dog or Entelbucher Sennenhund Organisations in the UK
National Entlebucher Mountain Dog Association
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