The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is said to have once been the most popular breed of dog in Switzerland. But what is the current price of this dog, what’s its height and weight; what is its life span; how can you get a hold of puppies and rescue adults? That’s what we aim to discover in this guide to everything you need to know about this breed.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Life Span: 7 to 11 Years
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Price: $1,500 to $3,000
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Height: From 23 Inches to 29 Inches
Other Names: Grosser Schweizer Sennenhund, Grand Bouvier Suisse
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Basics
This breed is said to have originated from indigenous Swiss breeds mating with mastiff dogs that had made their way to the country care of foreign settlers. The end product was a dog that was strong but loyal; hard-working but loving. There are many pluses to this breed of dog with regards to its health and its capability, and that’s why it was so popular for so long and why it is said to be one of the mot common working dogs throughout the whole of Switzerland.
This is a large dog, make no mistake about it. It is actually the largest and the oldest (in terms of its origins) of all Sennenhunde breeds. It has a tricolor double coat, with short fur.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Temperament
Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are one of the best dogs for kids, as it has a close affinity with humans of all shapes and sizes. It is a very active, happy-go-lucky dog, which makes it perfect for family homes. It does require a lot of exercise and like most big dogs it can be little too eager and that can cause breakages in the home. But at the same time, these dogs can be trained and they are very quick learners.
This speed of learning is likely down to the fact that the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is a very smart dog. It is very aware, very observant and very understanding, which is why it works do well with kids, other animals and with families of all shapes and sizes.
All in all, it’s exactly what you would hope to get from a large dog and this temperament is why the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog has been increasing in popularity over the last couple decades.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Lifespan
The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog doesn’t have the best life span. On average they live for 11 years, but they can also pass of natural causes a couple years either side of this. It is rare for this breed to live to or beyond 15, but they are usually fit and healthy until their later years.
One of the health issues faced by Greater Swiss Mountain Dog is urinary incontinence. It is said that a fifth of all female Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs will experience this issue. Fortunately, it is not linked to any serious condition and is no more than a minor annoyance for the owners and dog.
Around a fifth of both male and female dogs in this breed have issues with their eyelashes, namely a condition known as “Distichiasis”. They may also be prone to epilepsy, which is obviously more of a serious issue and one that could lead to major problems.
Perhaps more worryingly for the owners of Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, they are one of the few large dog breeds that can be prone to a condition known as Sudden Onset Aggression, also known as Rage Syndrome. This is defined as sudden and seemingly random acts of aggression, followed by moments of complete calm.
This is more common in Cocker Spaniels and may be genetic. It can be treated.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Price
These dogs are not cheap. There are many Greater Swiss Mountain Dog breeders that charge in excess of $3,000 per dog. The average, however, is much less than this at around $1,800. It all depends on the breeder, the parentage and a few other factors.
Greater Swiss Mountain Puppies
Like all dogs, Greater Swiss Mountain Dog puppies are exaggerated versions of their adult self. They are even more active, even more energetic. They are still good with children and in most cases they are also good with other animals like cats. It is important to monitor them when they are around small animals (like rabbits and guinea pigs) and children, but at the same time you should avoid being too cautious.
It is a good idea to introduce dogs to children and and other animals when they are puppies. That way they can grow alongside them and get used to them, so that when they are adults they see them as part of the family and not as a threat or a nuisance.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog for Sale
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog puppies are often sold in pet shops and on puppy farms. These are never good place to buy any dog because they are there for profit only and never have the dog’s best interests at heart.
Of course, breeders are also in it for profit, but they tend to charge a more respectable price, they are more likely to get the dog checked over and the odds of them keeping the dog locked up in a cage until it’s ready to be sold are slim. If you want a healthier dog and you want to promote better living conditions and practices, then make sure you buy your Greater Swiss Mountain puppy from a local independent breeder.
Greater Swiss Mountain Dog Rescue
As working dogs that require a lot of exercise and breeds that can develop a few health issues, Greater Swiss Mountain Dogs are not common in rescue centers. As adults they are also often overlooked as they don’t appear to be friendly, cuddly and kind natured dogs. But appearances aren’t everything and the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, like most other dogs, certainly fit into that mold.
So, give them a chance if you find one in your local shelter and you happen to be to be looking for a new dog. They will give you years of loyalty and adoration for your efforts.