This new Swiss breed of dog is quickly finding its way into the hearts of dog lovers everywhere. Find out more about this snowy pup here!
The Berger Blanc Suisse, also known as the Swiss Shepherd or Snowy Shepherd, originates from Switzerland and descends from the German Shepherd. It’s a medium-sized dog that weighs about 55 to 77 lbs fully grown. Its calm and good-natured personality that makes it patient, intelligent, and obedient.
As you read further, you’ll get to see all the important facts and information about the Berger Blanc Suisse. It’ll start with the history of this breed and how it was developed. You’ll also learn about what the Berger Blanc Suisse looks like and its personality. Next, you’ll read about how to the needs of a Berger Blanc Suisse such as grooming, feeding, dental care, and exercise. Finally, you’ll discover the different health issues that your Berger Blanc Suisse might face.
The History of the Berger Blanc Suisse
The Berger Blanc Suisse was developed in 2011 by breeding German Shepherds that had the recessive gene that gives the dog a white coat. It is similar to the White Shepherd which is a breed that is recognized by the United Kennel Club of England (UKC) but not the American Kennel Club (AKC).
Compared to the White Shepherd, the Berger Blanc Suisse has a back that is more level and a gentler temperament. This is because this breed was developed before the sloped back feature became desired by pet owners. To this day, the Berger Blanc Suisse hasn’t been recognized as a breed by the AKC but it is recognized by Fédération Cynologique Internationale, an international federation of kennel clubs based in Belgium.
What a Berger Blanc Suisse Looks Like
The Berger Blanc Suisse can attribute much of its popularity to its gorgeous appearance. This handsome and athletic breed has achieved and maintained its status as an attractive dog in just a few years because of how much pet owners love the way it looks. These next few sections will give you a thorough and detailed description of what your Berger Blanc Suisse will look like.
A Berger Blanc Suisse is a medium-sized dog that is similar in size to the German Shepherd. However, its size varies more than its ancestor breed. Male Berger Blanc Suisses grow up to be 23 to 26 inches tall and weigh about 66 to 88 lbs when fully grown. Female Berger Blanc Suisses are smaller in comparison, growing up to 21 to 24 inches in height and weigh around 55 to 77 lbs when fully grown.
The Berger Blanc Suisse strongly resembles the German Shepherd in both facial structure and build. Berger Blanc Suisses have a squarish body that is athletic and well-muscled, just like the German Shepherd. This breed is longer than it is tall and has an even and straight back.
Berger Blanc Suisses have handsome wedge-shaped heads and long sharp snouts. They have bushy tails and a bit of extra fur and fluff around their necks, ears, and underbellies. The Berger Blanc Suisse also has large paws which makes it great at digging, running, and leaping. This breed has expressive almond-shaped eyes and triangular ears that are pointed and placed high on their skulls.
Unlike the German Shepherd, the Berger Blanc Suisse can have a back that is straight rather than sloped because this breed was developed before the sloped back became desired by pet breeders.
Coat, Nose, and Eye Colors
The Berger Blanc Suisse can only have one coat color which is a striking white. This coat color covers this breed’s entire body and is contrasted by brown eyes with black rims and black lips. According to the breed’s standards, the Berger Blanc Suisse should have a black nose. However, some Berger Blanc Suisses can have pink or cream-colored noses as well.
This breed’s coat is long and thick to keep it warm during colder seasons. The Berger Blanc Suisse’s fur is straight and frays around the tail, cheeks, and ears. Its fur is known to be smooth and soft to the touch, much like that of the German Shepherd’s.
Berger Blanc Suisse Personality
The Berger Blanc Suisse is an attentive, protective, and gentle dog. This breed is known to be well-natured and easy-going. Like the German Shepherd, the Berger Blanc Suisse tends to be protective of its family and home. However, it is also known to have a calmer disposition, making it a great family pet.
Berger Blanc Suisses are patient and playful with children. Due to their large size, they can get a bit carried away with playtime, so if your Berger Blanc Suisse is going to be around a child, be sure to monitor their play.
This breed is also highly intelligent with a desire to please its owner. This makes them easy to train using positive reinforcement. The Berger Blanc Suisse can easily pick up different tricks and enjoy playing with interactive pet toys.
Taking Care of a Berger Blanc Suisse
Taking care of a Berger Blanc Suisse is serious business. This breed is a high maintenance dog that has several grooming needs, a large appetite, and a need for daily regular exercise. It just goes to show that it takes a whole village to raise this unique and special dog. These next few sections will cover everything you need to know about your Berger Blanc Suisse’s grooming, feeding, dental care, and exercise requirements.
Grooming your Berger Blanc Suisse takes frequent and regular care. The Berger Blanc Suisse’s coat is long and thick with a heavy undercoat. This breed is highly prone to shedding, matting, and knots in its fur so you will need to brush it every day even during non-shedding seasons.
The best types of brushes to use with a Berger Blanc Suisse are a deshedder and a dematter. A deshedder will get rid of any fur that your dog is about to shed to prevent any fur from spreading around your home. A dematter is designed to rake through your dog’s undercoat and remove any loose fur that can lead to matting.
Since the Berger Blanc Suisse has a white coat, you may want to use a bluing shampoo to keep its coat sparkling white. Bluing shampoo is formulated to gently clean your Berger Blanc Suisse’s coat while removing stains and maintaining its natural white color.
It’s always a good idea to use a natural pet conditioner when bathing your Berger Blanc Suisse because it keeps its coat soft and silky and lessens the chances of knotting and matting. You should bathe your Berger Blanc Suisse once a week for the first few months until they get used to bathing. Afterward, you can transition towards bathing your pup only when necessary or when they get into a messy accident.
Berger Blanc Suisses don’t particularly need to have their fur trimmed often because it isn’t prone to overgrowing. However, you can opt to take your pup to a groomer for a haircut if you want to try out haircut styles to change up its look.
Since the Berger Blanc Suisse’s fur grows out of its ears, grooming your dog’s fur is a must. If left unclean, your Berger Blanc Suisse can easily develop infections in their ear from built-up dirt. You can keep your Berger Blanc Suisse’s ears clean by dampening a cotton pad with a pet ear cleaning solution and wiping your puppy’s ears once a day.
Berger Blanc Suisses need to eat about 1.25 cups or 0.3 lbs of dog food a day as a puppy and 2.5 cups or 0.7 lbs of dog food a day as an adult. While your Berger Blanc Suisse is still a puppy, it’s good to divide its daily food intake into 3 to 4 meals a day. Once it reaches adulthood, you can divide its daily food intake into just 2 meals a day. This is to make sure that your Berger Blanc Suisse has enough energy throughout the day and to prevent it from choking or overfeeding.
According to veterinarians, high-quality kibble or dry food is the best option for feeding a Berger Blanc Suisse. Dry food allows your Berger Blanc Suisse to be fed easily, efficiently, and without risk of overfeeding. High-quality types of kibble also offer your Berger Blanc Suisse a balanced and nutritional diet.
Below is a table that compares the price of the brands of dry puppy food that you can feed your Berger Blanc Suisse puppy:
|Puppy food brand||Quantity per bag||Bags per year||Unit price||Price per year|
|Diamond Naturals||20 lbs||6||$38.99||$234|
|Hill’s Science||33 lbs||4||$54.99||$220|
|Taste of the Wild||30 lbs||4||$48.99||$200|
|Royal Canin||30 lbs||4||$83.69||$335|
Below is a table that compares the price of the brands of dry dog food that you can feed your adult Berger Blanc Suisse:
|Dog food brand||Quantity per bag||Bags per year||Unit price||Price per year|
|Diamond Naturals||30 lbs||9||$36.99||$332|
|Hill’s Science||30 lbs||9||$60.99||$550|
|Taste of the Wild||28 lbs||9||$48.99||$440|
|Royal Canin||30 lbs||9||$79.04||$711|
Brushing your Berger Blanc Suisse’s teeth every day is key to keeping its oral health in check. You should brush your Berger Blanc Suisse’s teeth once a day to prevent plaque and tartar and plaque build-up. You can use a pet-friendly toothbrush kit to keep your dog’s teeth clean and healthy. It’s important to start while it’s a puppy and to do it regularly so that your dog can get used to getting its teeth cleaned.
If your Berger Blanc Suisse doesn’t take to using a toothbrush, you can try enzymatic toothpaste and water additives. Enzymatic toothpaste breaks down plaque in your dog’s teeth and provides it with nutrients to help with oral health. Water additives help keep your dog’s breath minty fresh.
Berger Blanc Suisses are both highly intelligent and high-energy dogs. Your Berger Blanc Suisse will need about an hour to an hour and a half of exercise every day. A good way to exercise your Berger Blanc Suisse is by going on long walks or jogs or taking it to the dog park. These dogs love to be outdoors and run around.
The Berger Blanc Suisse is the perfect companion for pet owners that lead an active lifestyle. These dogs are happy to join you for your run or trek and will easily match your pace. However, be sure to only take them out for a hike or long run during cooler times of the day because their thick fur can make them prone to overheating.
Another type of exercise that a Berger Blanc Suisse will need is regular mental exercise. This breed can quickly become bored and agitated when it isn’t intellectually stimulated. Without mental exercise, your Berger Blanc Suisse can become anxious, disruptive, and even destructive. To prevent any unwanted behaviors from your dog, you can use training exercises like agility courses, herding activities, or obedience training. The Berger Blanc Suisse can quickly pick up any trick so you should change things up as often as possible to keep it interested.
Health Issues in Berger Blanc Suisses
Since the Berger Blanc Suisse descends from German Shepherds, it is prone to the same health problems that German Shepherds have. Unfortunately, most of the health issues that occur in this breed are difficult to treat. Most forms of treatment involve surgery and life-long medication. The most common health problems that Berger Blanc Suisses face are hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, bloat, and primary lens luxation. The following sections will explain each of these health problems, how you can identify their symptoms, diagnosing them, and treating them.
Below are the common health complications in Berger Blanc Suisses:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Primary Lens Luxation
Hip dysplasia is a medical condition wherein the Berger Blanc Suisse’s ball and socket joint doesn’t fit correctly in the hip. This is a common condition in most dog breeds but it is even more prevalent among Berger Blanc Suisses.
Symptoms of hip dysplasia include limping, sudden lower energy or lethargy, an unstable rump, decreased range of movement, and a dropped back. You can tell that your Berger Blanc Suisse is suffering from hip dysplasia if you observe any of these symptoms.
If you’re worried that your Berger Blanc Suisse might have hip dysplasia, you must rush your dog to the vet as soon as possible. Diagnosing hip dysplasia is done through an x-ray over your dog’s hip area.
Treating hip dysplasia depends on the severity of your dog’s condition. Dogs with a mild case of hip dysplasia are normally treated with maintenance medicine that can alleviate the pain and treat any arthritis that the dysplasia causes. If your veterinarian finds that your dog’s hip dysplasia is severe, it will be treated through surgery that will correct the fit of its ball and socket joint.
Similar to hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia is a medical condition that affects your dog’s joints. It affects the ulna bone, which is found in the Berger Blanc Suisse’s elbow. It causes bone and cartilage to break into smaller fragments and pieces which can lead to osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis causes consistent and severe pain in your dog’s elbow joints.
The symptoms of elbow dysplasia include limping, decreased, activity, lower energy, and decreased range of movement. Some dogs don’t show any outward signs of elbow dysplasia while other dogs appear to be in pain. The best way to diagnose elbow dysplasia is by taking your Berger Blanc Suisse to your local veterinarian.
Diagnosing elbow dysplasia will involve conducting an x-ray of your dog’s elbow joints. Before your veterinarian can conduct an x-ray, they will need to use anesthesia to make sure your dog is asleep during the process. Blood tests are necessary to make sure that your veterinarian can safely administer anesthesia to your dog.
Mild cases of elbow dysplasia can be treated with maintenance medicine and physical therapy. Your veterinarian will prescribe your dog medicine that will help with the pain caused by elbow dysplasia and alleviate arthritis that it causes. If the x-ray finds that your dog is suffering from a severe case of elbow dysplasia, it will have to undergo corrective surgery. The surgery will remove the fragments of cartilage and bone and correct the positioning of your dog’s elbow joint.
Berger Blanc Suisses are prone to bloating because they tend to consume their food too quickly. Bloating is a condition that occurs wherein your dog experiences strain and discomfort after a meal.
The symptoms of bloating include an enlarged stomach, restlessness, rapid breathing, drooling, and gagging. If your dog shows any of these symptoms after a meal, you must take them to the vet right away.
While bloating isn’t particularly dangerous for humans, it can be painful and even life-threatening for dogs. You can prevent bloating by dividing your dog’s food into two to three meals a day and feeding them with a slow-feeding bowl.
Bloating can lead to serious gastrointestinal problems for your dog if left untreated. If your Berger Blanc Suisse experiences a serious case of bloat, it will have to be taken to the vet. Treating bloating involves the use of a stomach tube or a large needle to release trapped gas in your dog’s stomach. If during this procedure, your veterinarian finds that your dog’s stomach is twisted, they will have to perform corrective surgery.
Primary Lens Luxation
Primary lens luxation is a genetic condition that commonly affects Berger Blanc Suisses. This is inherited from its ancestor breed, the German Shepherd. To help you understand what primary lens luxation is, you must first understand where and how it occurs.
There is a crystalline lens found in your dog’s pupil which helps redirect light into your dog’s retina to form visual images. This lens is held together by fibers called the zonules.
In some dogs, the zonules can break down which results in the lens becoming unstable. When this happens, the lens can either sink or rise and cause acute pain in your dog’s eye and even vision loss. Primary lens luxation normally occurs at an early age and affects Berger Blanc Suisse puppies.
Symptoms of primary lens luxation include redness in the eye, swelling, eye scratching, and the pupils turning blue. If you observe any of these symptoms in your Berger Blanc Suisse, you must rush it to your veterinarian right away.
The best course treatment for primary lens luxation is surgery. If the luxation is still reversible, your veterinarian will perform corrective surgery to put the lens back in place. However, if it is a severe case, your veterinarian may be forced to completely remove the eye to relieve your dog of any pain.
In the event that your veterinarian cannot perform surgery on your dog, they will attempt to treat it medically. This course of treatment involves sedating your dog and widening the pupil to push the lens back into your dog’s eye.
After that, your dog will be put on life-long daily medication that will help keep your Berger Blanc Suisse’s pupils small and the lens in place. However, this course of treatment only has an 80% chance of success.
The Berger Blanc Suisse is a new but impressive breed of dog. Descending from the mighty German Shepherd, these snowy-coated dogs are athletic, intelligent, playful, and loyal. They make for a perfect family pet because of their ability to get along with children and learn tricks with ease.
Taking care of a Berger Blanc Suisse can be a bit pricey but it is definitely manageable. These large dogs need to be groomed every day to keep their coats healthy. They also need a lot of food to maintain a healthy weight and a good amount of energy. They might not be the perfect dog for inexperienced pet owners but they are great for anyone who’s willing to prepare for taking them home.
Aside from their grooming and feeding needs, these dogs are also prone to a number of serious and expensive health issues. Most of the health problems that Berger Blanc Suisses faces are treated through surgery. The Berger Blanc Suisse needs an owner that can invest in giving it a long and healthy life and receive the perfect, most loving, best friend in return.
Hey there! I’m Matt and I’m a content writer from the Philippines. I’ve raised over 10 dogs and 5 cats. I love taking care of my rescue dog Kewpie and my two rescue cats, Misty and Rosy.