HOW MUCH DO THEY EAT?
A Saint Bernard will not "eat
you out of house and home." The fact is, a Saint Bernard can be raised and maintained on no more food than required for other
large breeds. Since Saints are basically placid dogs, they generally require less food per pound of body weight than most
smaller, more active breeds.
HOW MUCH DO THEY WEIGH?
Saint puppies weigh about one and one-half pounds at birth and grow rapidly during
the first year, although it may take as long as three years before they reach full maturity. Adult males may reach a height
of 28-30 inches at the shoulder and will normally weigh between 140 and 200 pounds. Females are somewhat smaller at about
26-28 inches at the shoulder and typically range from 120 to 180 pounds.
ARE THEY GOOD WITH CHILDREN?
Definitely. They have
an understanding of a child's way and are amazingly careful not to injure a child. They are excellent babysitters and companions.
Naturally, a child must never be allowed to torment any dog, regardless of breed.
ARE THEY EASY TO TRAIN?
Because of the size
of the animal, the Saint Bernard MUST be trained and this must be done early in his life. Fortunately, Saints are eager to
please and will begin responding to commands as soon as they understand what you want of them.
DO THEY SHED?
Yes. Twice a year, usually
in Spring and Fall, they lose much of their coats to help them adjust to the changing seasons. For the remainder of the year,
there is seldom any annoyance from shedding.
DO THEY DROOL?
Yes. Depending on the
weather, the level of excitement, and the shape of the dog's jowls, most Saints will drool on occasion. Technically, there
is no such thing as a "dry mouthed Saint", but most Saints do not drool to an offensive degree.
ARE THEY GOOD WATCHDOGS?
The Saint's size and
bark will discourage most intruders, yet he will learn to recognize your friends and receive them cordially. If an intruder
gets by the size and barks, your Saint may decide to lead him straight to the family silver since he would much prefer to
be a friend to all. The one exception to this is when a member of the family is being threatened. The Saint's instinct to
protect those he loves becomes very apparent at this time.
WHY DO SOME SAINT BERNARD'S HAVE SHORT HAIR?
Saint Bernard's were all short-haired dogs. Over 150 years ago. the Monks in Switzerland found it necessary to bring some
new blood into their breeding and interbred the long coated Newfoundland with their Saints. Today, the influence of that breeding
is still with us and we have both long and short-haired Saint Bernard's.
HOW MUCH ROOM DO THEY NEED?
The Saint by nature does not
require acres and acres to roam. They are not as active or nervous as some breeds and are content to remain close to home
for the most part. Consequently, a small fenced yard or kennel run is enough just so long as there is some place for regular
exercise. The apartment dweller must be walked frequently to make up for the exercise he would normally take at his leisure.
SHOULD I GET A MALE OR A FEMALE?
is strictly a matter of personal preference. Both are equal in pet qualities. The male, being larger, is more impressive when
first viewed. The female, however, must be considered his equal in all other respects. Modern veterinary practice recommends
neutering of non-breeding animals of both sexes as a means to a healthier, better pet.
HOW DO THEY HANDLE THE HOT WEATHER?
The dog will do well as long as there is a cool dry place
to nap and plenty of fresh cool water. He will cut down both his food intake and his amount of activity. It must be remembered
that going from an air conditioned place into the boiling heat can be disastrous. Abrupt changes in temperature are extremely
hard on a Saint.