He’s our 3 year old Bernese Mountain Dog/Border Collie mix. We adopted him last week. Besides his perfect pint sized apartment body, he is all Bernese Mountain Dog. He is very calm and extremely gentle and low key. I’m in love.
We can’t figure out how we got so lucky because he is such a handsome sweet boy. All I can think is that he wasn’t neutered, so people took him out for a walk and he peed on everything and they thought, “not the dog for us.”
Due his gentle and sweet personality he is a doll in the house. He doesn’t chew, bark, or bite. Outside, he needs some work. He gets really excited by new smells and other people and pulls pretty badly on his leash. The elevator is his favorite place due to the number of smells in such an enclosed spot. I’m doing the best I can and we are going to start a training class next Thursday that I hope will be helpful.
I really think if we can get him as calm outside as he is inside, he could even be a therapy dog because he is so sweet and loving. Right now, he just needs to learn to channel it more appropriately.
Leave your favorite training tip here! Right now I am working with treats, a clicker, and lots and lots of practice. :-)
As a side note:
Things I love about Lattice:
1. When ignored, he totally picks up the message. So, he leaves me alone in the kitchen and won’t beg for food.
2. No barking. Not in the car (even though he loves watching other cars go by) and not when he sees other dogs
3. I love that he loves people. We absolutely need to work on channeling his excitement so he doesn’t jump or paw. But, he is a joy to watch and gets super wiggly and happy.
4. He cuddles at home, but nicely. He”ll put his head on your lap or nudge you to scratch his ears.
5. Happy wake-ups. Whether I am taking a nap or waking up in the morning. He comes over to me for a cuddle and an ear scratch.
6. Knows inside behavior. He may be nuts on walks, but inside the house, he is totally low key, calm, and sleeps all day.
7. Isn’t glued to my side. If he is sleeping in one room and I walk around the apartment, he stays put. He doesn’t follow me unless I motion for him too.
8. Calm. Especially in the house, he is fairly slow moving and not overly eager. It actually makes training a bit hard. Unless I am using really tasty treats (cheese, hot dogs), he will sit and give me this look like… “I’m calm, you’re calm. I’ll sit for you…whats the issue?”
9. Sensitive. G. gently play hit him with a tube the other night. When G. pulled out the tube last night, he squealed and moved away. This is good for G. so that he can become more aware of the fact that his actions and energy have consequences. He isn’t scared of G., and he doesn’t pee (which other dogs do when they meet him because he is so energetic around dogs!) but he is clearly responsive.
The other thing he does with G. that he never does with me, is hump!! I think G. gets so excited to have a puppy that he transmits his excitement to Lattice who takes that out with humping behavior. But, no one likes to get humped! So, the dog is training G. to be more calm too!
It also makes me wonder if Lattice was given up because he was in a family with children and he humped the children every time they riled him up, even as a young dog? We get the sense that he does have some house manners and was in a house, at least as a puppy. He is clearly well socialized. He isn’t afraid of any sounds or new places, loves people, and is friendly with other dogs. He also came to use house trained and recognizing basic commands like “sit” and “come.” He sleeps in his crate every night, even though we leave the door open.
So, who would give a dog like this up (and who wouldn’t neuter their dog?? grrr). But, if he humps every time he gets excited and you have kids, I could definitely see that being a deal breaker.
10. Mini Berner. G. and I definitely wanted a Bernese Mountain Dog. They are huge, gentle, giants. But the breed pool is small so they are extremely expensive and have major health problems, plus very short lives. We are feeling like we are getting a taste of what having a Bernese Mountain Dog is like, without the size and health problems!