The Leonberger Saint Bernard Mix, is a mixed breed dog resulting from breeding the Leonberger and the Saint Bernard. This could make for a very powerful and large breed. Is it more like the Leonberger or the Saint Bernard? Those are the questions we will try and answer below. Continue reading below to see pictures, videos, and learn more about the beautiful Leonberger Saint Bernard Mix.
While we really recommend that you acquire all animals through a rescue, we understand that some people might go through a breeder to get their Leonberger Saint Bernard Mix puppy. That is, if they have any Leonberger Saint Bernard Mix puppies for sale.
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All hybrid or designer dogs are tough to get a good read on as there isn’t much history to them. Breeding specific dogs like this has become common in the last twenty years or so even though I am sure that this mixed breed found it’s share of dogs to the shelter due to accidental breeding. We will take a closer look at the history of both parent breeds below. If you are looking at breeders for new, designer dogs please beware of Puppy Mills. These are places that mass produce puppies, specifically for profit and don’t care at all about the dogs. Please sign our petition to stop puppy mills.
Saint Bernard History:
The Saint Bernard is a very old breed of dog descending primarily from the French Alps. The ancestors of the St. Bernard have a similar history and background with the Sennenhunds. The St. Bernard is also referred to as an Alpine Mountain Dog or Alpine Cattle Dog, these were the large farm dogs of the farmers and dairymen of most notably the French Alps, livestock guardians, herding dogs, and draft dogs as well as hunting dogs, search and rescue dogs, and watchdogs. They are thought to be descendants of large breed dogs brought into the Alps by the ancient Romans.
The earliest written records of the St. Bernard breed come from monks that were living and working at a hospice at the Great St. Bernard Pass in 1707. However, paintings and drawings of the dog date back even earlier than that. There was a famous Saint Bernard, named Barry (sometimes spelled Berry), who reportedly saved somewhere between 40 and 100 lives as a search and rescue dog. There is a monument to Barry in the Cimetière des Chiens, and his body was preserved in the Natural History Museum in Berne. Another famous dog was Rutor, the faithful companion of the priest fr:Pierre Chanoux named after the peak Tête du Rutor located above the Little St Bernard pass. The classic St. Bernard looked very different from the St. Bernard of today because of cross-breeding. Severe winters from 1816 to 1818 led to increased numbers of avalanches, killing many of the dogs used for breeding while they were performing rescues. After their dwindling numbers there was an attempt to preserve the breed, the remaining St. Bernards were crossed with Leonbergers brought from the Colony of Leonberger in the 1850s. The Leonberger wasn’t the best breed of dog for intense search and rescue work as their long hair would freeze and weigh them down.
The Monks trained the younger dogs for search and rescue work by letting the younger dogs watch and learn from the older dogs.
The Swiss St. Bernard Club was founded in Basel on 15 March 1884. The St. Bernard was the very first breed entered into the Swiss Stud Book in 1884, and the breed standard was finally approved in 1888. Since then, the breed has been a Swiss national dog.
The dogs at the St Bernard hospice were working dogs that were smaller than today's show St Bernard's dogs. Originally about the size of a German Shepherd Dog. It makes sense that a little smaller dog would work better than a larger one. The St Bernard grew to the size of today's dog as kennel clubs and dog shows emphasized appearance over the dog's working ability.
Originally the Leonberger were kept as farm dogs. They pulled carts and did other tasks as needed. In the 20th Century, they became water rescue dogs, and they still continue to live in that role today.
In the 1830s a dog breeder named Heinrich Essig claims to have created the Leonberger by crossing a male dog that would later create the Saint Bernard breed along with a female Landseer Newfoundland. Later down the line, Essig claims to have added a Pyrenean Mountain dog to the mix, which created the large dog with long white coats.
This may just be a story since the claim is still disputed. The reason for this is due to a description that claims animals the looked like Leonbergers were owned by Austrian Prince Franz Metternich, of Wolfberg in 1585.
The more modern look of a Leonberger, which includes darker coats and black masks, came later in the 20th century. This happened when other breeds, such as the Newfoundland, were reintroduced to the genetic pool. The reintroduction was due to the loss of Leonbergers during World War I, and even though the breed started to thrive again, it was lost once more during World War II. Leonbergers were used to pull ammunition carts during these wars.
Interestingly, all Leonberger today can be traced back to the only eight survivors of World War II.
Height: 28 - 35 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 140 - 120 lb.
Lifespan: 8-10 years
The Leonberger is considered a giant-sized dog. The average height of a male Leonberger is 28 to 31.5 inches, while a female is between 25.5 to 29.5 inches in height. The weight average for a male Leonberger is 120 to 170 pounds. On the other hand, the Leonberger female averages 100 to 135 pounds.
Like all hybrids, you have to look to the parents to get a good read on how they will likely behave. This could obviously make for a very powerful and strong breed that will have a lot of energy and a high prey drive. Both of these parent breeds have higher energy and a very strong prey and drive instincts. They should get along well with other animals if exposed and socialized properly as well. They are somewhat capable of independence, or alone time when the house is noisy or full. She responds well to positive reinforcement, like all dogs. She should be rather affectionate and enjoy spending lots of time with you. Don’t plan on leaving her alone for long periods as he won’t do well alone. She wants to be with the “pack.”
All dogs have the potential to develop genetic health problems as all breeds are susceptible to some things more than others. However, the one positive thing about getting a puppy is that you can avoid this as much as possible. A breeder should absolutely offer a health guarantee on puppies. If they won’t do this, then look no more and don’t consider that breeder at all. A reputable breeder will be honest and open about health problems in the breed and the incidence with which they occur. Health clearances prove that a dog has been tested for and cleared of a particular condition.
The Leonberger mixed with the Saint Bernard might be prone to Distichiasis, Gastric Torsion, Elbow Dysplasia, Hip Dysplasia, Heart Conditions, Wobbler's Syndrome
Note that these are just common problems in both breeds.
What are the grooming requirements?
This will be a tougher dog to groom as both of the parent breeds have longer hair. Be prepared to brush them a few times a week. Either way, get ready to invest in a good vacuum if you want to keep your floors clean! Give them baths as needed, but not so much that you dry out their skin. Never tie your dog up outside - that is inhumane and not fair to him.
What are the exercise requirements?
Plan on taking them for extremely long walks and hikes to keep their energy level down. This exercise will keep them from being destructive. A tired dog is a good dog. A tired dog is a good dog though. Never tie your dog up outside - that is inhumane and not fair to him.
What are the training requirements?
This is an intelligent dog that will be a little bit challenging to train. They are going to want to take the alpha position and need someone with a firm, strong, hand that can let them know their place. The best thing you can do is break the sessions into shorter daily sessions to keep their attention span higher. It might have a prey drive and be disposed to running for and chasing small prey, but if handled properly this can be managed. All dogs respond best to positive reinforcement. So make sure to praise her when she does well. She is an intelligent dog who loves to please, and loves a physical challenge. The more exercise she gets the easier she will be to train. Proper socialization is imperative to all dogs and puppies. Make sure to take her to the park and doggy day care to get her around as many people and dogs as possible.
A lot of times diet is done on a per-dog basis. Each one is unique and has different dietary requirements. Most dogs in the U.S. are overweight. A mix like this one that is prone to hip and elbow dysplasia should really be on fish oil and glucosamine and chondroitin supplements as soon as possible.
Overfeeding any dog is not a good idea as that can really exacerbate health problems such as elbow and hip dysplasia.
A good diet to look into is Raw Food Diet. A raw food diet will be especially good for the Wolf background.
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