Bernese Mountain Dog Free To Good Home

Bernese Mountain Dog Free To Good Home

Finding Free Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies in the United States may seem almost impossible. However, it isn’t. Dog enthusiasts looking to get a puppy without breaking the bank can still get free puppies if they know where to look, and this article will show you a few tried and tested options. Remember that you are taking a risk when looking for a free Bernese Mountain Dog.

Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies for Sale
Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies for Sale

Therefore, you must be vigilant to weed out legitimate sources from scammers. One way to ensure you get a genuine dog is to visit the premise of whoever is giving away the puppy to see the puppy before you take it home. If you live far away, arrange a video call, as pictures and videos can be doctored.

Best Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies for sale
Best Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies for sale

You could also arrange to have the puppy checked by a vet before you take it home if the owner permits. You could also ask the owner if you could do a trial period of a few weeks before committing to taking the puppy home. The most important thing to remember is that you need to be 100% comfortable before bringing the puppy home.

Bernese Mountain Dog rescues and adoption
Bernese Mountain Dog rescues and adoption

Before Beginning Your Search For Free Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies

Characteristics of the Bernese Mountain Dog

Bernese mountain dogs typically have a good-natured personality. Hallmarks of their temperament include their gentle nature and eagerness to please. With proper socialization, they can be open to meeting strangers and are quite affectionate with their families. They are protective and make good watchdogs, though some can bark more than you might desire.

Berners are intelligent dogs that are quite trainable, and while any dog should have thorough obedience training starting in puppyhood, it is especially important with a large-breed dog like the Bernese Mountain Dog. Although gentle, these dogs can be playful and exuberant, and their size and weight means that they might accidentally knock over a child, or even an adult, should they jump up in greeting or get too energetic while playing.

Because of their outgoing personalities and devotion to their family, Berners don’t like to be left alone for too long. This isn’t the right breed for you if you work long hours and expect a dog that can remain happily alone at home.

Affection Level High
Friendliness High
Kid-Friendly High
Pet-Friendly High
Exercise Needs Medium
Playfulness Medium
Energy Level Medium
Trainability High
Intelligence Medium
Tendency to Bark Medium
Amount of Shedding High

History of the Bernese Mountain Dog

The Bernese mountain dog originated in Switzerland around the city of Berne, for which it is named. Its ancestors came to the area thousands of years ago and descend from Roman mastiffs, among other dogs. Today, the Berner is one of four varieties of Swiss mountain dog, set apart by its longer and silkier coat. The other three varieties are the Greater Swiss mountain dog, the Entlebucher mountain dog, and the Appenzeller mountain dog.

In the 1800s, these dogs were used to drive livestock, guard farms, and pull heavy loads. They also were loving companions to their families. The breed declined in popularity toward the end of the 1800s due to machines replacing them in much of their work. However, that spurred clubs to form to preserve the breed and revive its popularity.

Berners arrived in the U.S. in the early 1900s. And the American Kennel Club first recognized the breed in 1937. They’re now regularly one of the most popular dog breeds in the country, thanks to their friendliness, reasonable energy level, and good looks.


The Berner has a double coat (a shorter undercoat paired with a longer outer coat), which repels dirt and debris nicely. But the coat does shed a lot. Brush your dog thoroughly at least weekly to remove loose fur and prevent mats and tangles. Also, shedding will typically increase when the weather changes in the spring and fall, and daily brushings might be necessary to keep up with all the loose fur. Begin brushing your Berner as a puppy so it becomes accustomed to regular grooming; many dogs will even look forward to their grooming sessions if you make it a habit when they are still young.

Bathe your dog roughly every month, depending on how dirty it gets. And check to see whether it needs a nail trim every month as well. Also, examine your dog’s ears weekly to see whether they need cleaning. Look for dirt, along with any redness, swelling, or smell in the ears. Dogs with floppy ears, like the Bernese Mountain Dog, can be more prone to ear infections than dogs with upright ears.

Finally, many Bernese mountain dogs drool very little, but those with loose jowls can drool quite a bit. That slobber can end up on the dog, in the house, and on you. So if you have a drooler, keep a cleanup cloth on hand to prevent the drool from embedding in your dog’s fur. And as with any dog, try to brush your Berner’s teeth regularly to prevent the buildup of tartar that can lead to gum disease.


Berners have a moderate energy level, and they need space for their big bodies to move and play. Aim for a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise every day, such as brisk walks, hikes, and games of fetch. Berners are quite athletic dogs and can compete in dog sports, such as obedience, agility, tracking, and carting. This will help to challenge them both mentally and physically, and can be lots of fun for you both.

As a general rule, these dogs do best in a house with a yard. If you live in an apartment or a home without a yard, then it is even more important to make sure your Bernese Mountain Dog gets daily outdoors time in the form of a long walk, time at the dog park, a session of doggy daycare, or a vigorous game of fetch the ball or Frisbee. Your Berner will likely love playdates with fellow friendly and outgoing dogs as well, as long as they are matched in size and strength.


Bernese mountain dogs are bright and eager to please, which helps to make training easy. Start basic obedience and socialization when your dog is a puppy, teaching it to sit, stay, and lie down on command. This is especially important for such a large breed like a Berner, as adults are powerful and thus difficult to control if they haven’t learned their manners. Aim to expose your dog to different people, other animals, and various situations to boost its comfort and confidence.

Berners respond well to consistent and positive training techniques, such as clicker training. They are sensitive to harsh corrections and might shut down with such training. And like many other large-breed dogs, they take longer to reach full physical and mental maturity, so always be patient with your pet and remember that multiple short training sessions each day—just five minutes or so—are more effective than one long session.

Common Health Problems

Bernese mountain dogs have relatively short lifespans compared to many other smaller breeds, which is something to take into consideration before deciding to bring one home. Like many breeds, the Berner is prone to certain hereditary conditions1, including:

  • Hip and elbow dysplasia, which is a genetic abnormality in the development of the joints
  • Blood disorders, including Von Willebrand’s disease, in which the blood doesn’t clot properly
  • Cancer, especially a type of cancer that affects the white blood cells
  • Progressive retinal atrophy, a degenerative eye disease
  • Bloat, a potentially life-threatening condition in which the stomach bloats and can twist—often from eating too quickly

Diet and Nutrition

Always have fresh water available for your dog, and select a quality, nutritionally balanced canine diet. Berner puppies especially will benefit from a diet made for large breeds. These diets contain the proper nutrition to encourage slow and steady growth to help prevent joint problems and other issues.

Most owners feed meals twice per day. Discuss the diet and quantity with your vet to ensure your dog is eating properly. And make sure treats and other extra food don’t lead to your dog overeating and becoming overweight. Excess weight can put a great deal of stress on these big dogs’ joints and lead to other health problems.

Find Free Bernese Mountain Dog Puppies Near Me

All the Bernese mountain dog rescue agencies on this list are recognized by the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America (BMDCA). Here are the best Bernese Mountain Dog rescues in the United States.

Arizona Bernese Mountain Dog Rescue (Arizona)

  • While BMDCA can’t recognize this non-profit organization, it is backed by the Grand Canyon State Bernese Mountain Dog Club that has recognition of that caliber. This program helps Bernese Mountain Dog rescues find “forever homes.” Each dog is spayed and neutered in their care.
  • The Arizona Bernese Mountain Dog Rescue is unique because they 501(c)3 non-profit organization that actually provides a shelter, treatment, and care for any Bernese Mountain Dogs that need to be rehomed. If you want to adopt or rehome one of these dogs, you can also email them at

Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Alaska (Alaska)

This club has meetings and activities throughout the year for both Bernese Mountain Dog owners and enthusiasts alike. They also have an active Bernese Mountain Dog rescue program for re-homing and adopting. To get information about how to adopt one of their rescues, you must contact one of their board members.

We like this Bernese Mountain Dog rescue because they are committed to well-being of the Berner dog breed. For whatever reasons, if you need to surrender your Bernese Mountain Dog, they will take your dog and not judge you. They are located in Alaska.

NorCal Bernese Mountain Dog Rescue (California)

This program is dedicated to bringing safety, stability, and love to Bernese Mountain Dogs. This non-profit is affiliated with the Sierra West Bernese Mountain Dog Club, which is recognized by the BMDCA. This program only places within their geographical location because prospective families must pass a home visit before completing the adoption.

Heartland Bernese Mountain Dog Club (Multiple States)

  • This club services the Arkansas, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, and Oklahoma areas to help transport, rehabilitate, foster, and adopt Bernese Mountain Dogs to find the best match and care for them. To learn more about how to rescue a dog from this regional club, you must contact their Rescue Chair.
  • Most of their Bernese Mountain Dogs that get surrendered are over two years old and already an adult. There dogs come from all walks of life including being abandoned, surrendered, are a stray, or need to be rehomed. They only specialize in the Bernese Mountain Dog, so if you’re looking to rescue or adopt then you can contact this organization.

Bernese Mountain Dogs of the Rockies (Colorado and surrounding states)

  • This organization has placed dogs throughout the Colorado, Wyoming, and Montana areas, although they can branch out to Utah and New Mexico as well. If you want to adopt from them, they’ll keep your application on file for six months before it must be updated again. Before adoption, all Berners from this rescue are spayed and neutered.
  • According to their website, on average they are able to place 20 dogs per year. This is a relatively high volume for Bernese Mountain Dogs so if you’re looking to rescue or adopt you should reach out this organization.

Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Southern California (California)

  • As with most places on this list, adoption is not on a first-come, first-serve basis. These programs take time to get to know the animal and the prospective owners to make sure a correct match is made. To apply for a rescue dog, you must complete the adoption application and submit it to the Rescue Chair.
  • The applications are not fulfilled on a first come first serve basis. Instead, these Bernese Mountain Dog are adopted out based on the right fit for the family and dog.

Chattahoochee Valley Bernese Mountain Dog Club (Georgia and Surrounding States)

Most events this club hosts take place in the Georgia area, but can expand into Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, and Tennessee. They do not have a set adoption fee, as the rate for each dog varies. On average, this organization places about 10 dogs a year which is a relatively high volume for Bernese Mountain Dogs.

Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Nashoba Valley (East Coast)

  • This Bernese Mountain Dog club serves the New England area (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Vermont). This organization will let you adopt from out-of-state. However, you have to make the drive to pick up your dog, as they will not “ship” the dog to you.
  • In order to apply, you simply need to fill out the application and wait. They will contact you once one of their Bernese Mountain Dogs are available for adoption. Like most Bernese Mountain Dog rescues, they tend to have a lot more applicants than they do dogs to adopt.

Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Northeastern Illinois (Illinois)

  • This organization serves the Northern Illinois and Chicago area with no out-of-state adoptions. Prospective owners must have a fenced-in backyard, participate in crate training, and attend formal obedience training. They also require a home visit to ensure the applicant is a good fit for a Berner rescue.
  • Generally, there Bernese Mountain Dogs come from the local animal shelter when they are determined to be mostly purebred BMDs. In addition, sometime their dogs come from puppy mills, pet stores, backyard breeders, or even internet purchases. Most of the dogs are bought by people who aren’t adequately able to care for their dog and only want a cute puppy.

Heart of Michigan Bernese Mountain Dog Rescue (Michigan)

  • This rescue program is backed by The Heart of Michigan Bernese Mountain Dog Club, a recognized BMDCA club. This organization makes sure prospective adopters know the added cost and time-dedication it takes to own a Berner.
  • There is a pretty lengthy application form, but they want to make sure perspective dog owners are going to be able to care for the lifetime of their adopted Bernese Mountain Dog. They don’t want to see their dogs end up back in the shelter, but they want to see them living a happy and healthy life.

Blue Ridge Bernese Mountain Dog Club (North Carolina)

This program is dedicated to helping people find loving rehomes for their Bernese Mountain Dogs. They foster their rescues with other club members. There is no kenneling or living outside for these Berners.

Bernese Mountain Dog Club of the Greater Twin Cities (Minnesota)

Although they don’t have a strict fence policy, this program strongly discourages people from using “invisible” fencing with Bernese Mountain Dogs. Most of the time, they avoid the pain to chase whatever they’re after!

Mason Dixon Bernese Mountain Dog Club (All States)

  • All dogs that come from this rescue program are spayed and neutered. This adoption process also requires a home visit and everyone in the family to meet the prospective dog. If you don’t want to adopt, you can also foster.
  • They will take Bernese Mountain Dogs from all over the United States and contact members to foster these dogs until they can get them adopted. They are a very caring organization and love the Berner breed.

Lone Star Bernese Mountain Dog Club and Rescue (Texas)

  • This program mainly places dogs in the Texas area but can branch out into Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana. Like most other rescue programs, the dogs are spayed and neutered before being placed in their adoptive home.
  • If you want to adopt a Bernese Mountain Dog but don’t know where to start, check out any of the links provided. These organizations are happy to inform you about these beautiful dogs and make sure you’re as good a fit in their lives as they are in yours.

Final Thoughts

We hope that you enjoyed our list of the best Bernese Mountain Dog Rescues where you can hopefully try to adopt or rescue one of these beautiful dogs. Typically, adopted Bernese Mountain Dogs tend to be adults and they may have had a not so great past. Make sure that you are able to financial care for these dogs and have enough free time to adequately exercise them. Best of luck finding one of these dogs.

Edward Hollon is an avid dog lover and writer, knowing all there is to know about our furry friends. Edward has been writing for petdii for three years now, wanting to use her knowledge for good and share everything she can with new dog owners. Edward has two dogs herself - a German shepherd called Banjo and a chocolate labrador called Buttons. Edward knows more than anyone how adjusting to new life with a puppy can turn your life upside down, and she wants to ease some of the burdens through her articles.