The Latest Designer Dog That’s Breaking the Internet: Why Everyone’s Obsessed with the Golden Mountain Dog!
Ready to learn about a designer dog breed you’ve probably never heard of? The Golden Mountain Dog is a Golden Retriever Bernese Mountain Dog mix that dazzles dog lovers with its giant size and sweet, gentle personality. A beautiful mix, Golden Mountain Dogs often look like Golden Retrievers wearing Bernese Mountain Dog colors, but some look much more like purebred Goldens. Adorable as pups, young Golden Mountain Dogs look a whole lot like teddy bears, which helps to make them extra irresistible.
But is mixing two very different breeds like Golden Retrievers and Bernese Mountain Dogs a good idea, and are their offspring happier or healthier than their purebred parent breeds?
In this guide, we’ll cover everything there is to know about this new designer mixed dog breed and get to the bottom of whether you should add a Golden Mountain Dog to your family.
Get To Know 9 Golden Mountain Dogs from Instagram
If you’re having a hard time imagining what Golden Mountain Dogs look like, imagine no longer! Let’s meet a handful of adorable Golden Retriever Bernese Mountain Dog mixes from around the world whose looks exemplify this hybrid breed. Remember, breeders rarely know exactly what mixed-breed puppies will look like full-grown, so taking a good look at adults of that mix before you commit is a good way to prepare yourself.
Brewster is still just a puppy, but from the size of his fluffy paws, you can tell he’s going to be a big boy! A Golden Mountain Dog from South Boston, Brewster is a pretty easy-going pup who enjoys walks with his humans, playing with his toys, and finding comfy spots to observe and learn about the world.
2. Sully & Nala
Sully (left) and Nala (right) are both Golden Mountain Dogs, but Nala looks almost like a purebred Golden Retriever! In mixed breeds, there can be a lot of variation, and these two are a great example of how two dogs of the same mix can differ so greatly.
This handsome boy is Romy, a Golden Mountain Dog from Lyon, France whose bestie is a cat! Romy is playful, friendly, and loves to meet other dogs, but his favorite spot is snuggled up in a blanket with his kitty cat Spiky and his human.
If you had to guess what breed Norm is just from his looks, you might say he is a Newfoundland. Despite his almost all-black coat, Norm is actually a Golden Retriever Bernese Mountain mix! Norm is six years old and from Northern Illinois where he has lived with his family since they got him as a puppy from a tree farm!
Loki is an 11-month-old Golden Mountain Dog from Canada who is in training to become a service dog! A super smart boy who is always eager to please his humans, Loki is going to be the perfect helper someday when he finishes his training.
This pretty lady is Wattle, a Golden Mountain Dog from Vancouver Island, BC in Canada. Just one year old, Wattle is already a pretty big dog and is definitely taking after her Bernese Mountain Dog parentage in terms of looks.
Also from Vancouver Island, BC, Brewer is a three-year-old Golden Retriever x Bernese Mountain Dog mix who loves the outdoors and especially the beach! Brewer could spend hours chasing his ball into the water and has enjoyed many sunsets on the sand after a day of playing.
Gary might look like a Golden Retriever dyed black, but his little white toes and reddish-brown chest fur hint at his real identity: Golden Mountain Dog! Six years old and from Vancouver, BC, Gary is the biggest dog in his family which also includes a Pitbull mix, small Terriers, and Chihuahua mixes.
Handsome Hank is a five-year-old Golden Mountain Dog from London, Ontario whose humans say he is a fanatic for belly rubs! A smiley boy who is always happy to tag along on an adventure, Hank’s Retriever genes kick in whenever he is near water and he just has to go swimming!
Bernese Mountain Dog Golden Retriever Mix Basic Info
Bernese Mountain Dogs and Golden Retrievers are very different dog breeds that don’t even belong to the same breed group. Bernese Mountain Dogs are a working breed originally used as cattle herders, livestock guardian dogs, and later draft dogs hauling loads for their human companions. Quite the opposite, Golden Retrievers were bred for hunting and designed to retrieve game—particularly waterfowl—for hunters.
So, what do you get when you combine these two breeds?
Like most designer mixes, there is no breed standard for the Golden Mountain Dog. Because of this, the best that anyone can do—including people who claim to be professional breeders of this mix—is to guess at what the end result will be. Here you’ll learn about what you might be able to expect if you own a Golden Mountain Dog and hear advice from people living their lives with these mixes.
Golden Mountain Dog Temperament
Sweet, gentle, and friendly the Golden Mountain Dog is far less imposing than its size might suggest. Most examples of this breed are playful yet affectionate and enjoy spending time being active just as much as they love to be with their humans. Some Golden Mountain Dogs inherit a tendency toward anxiety from their Berner side, but often only need a little time to get over their initial concerns.
“My [Golden Mountain Dog] is a giant goofball…[he] has some of the Berner anxiety but overall he’s a good boy and has been in good health. He’s about 100 pounds and gets along well with pretty much everyone, to a fault in some cases. But there is another Golden Mountain Dog at the park we go to and they have very different personalities. She likes water—he doesn’t, she’s always up in your business and my dude can be a bit more aloof…I don’t think you can really bank on a specific personality type.”Golden Mountain Dog owner, Reddit
Typically intelligent and fast learners, Golden Mountain Dogs do well when given tasks and commands, and will happily follow the energy of their “pack” rather than making themselves the center of attention. Because of their large size, Golden Mountain Dogs should be given early exposure to plenty of people and other animals, especially since some can be slightly skittish.
Golden Mountain Dog Size
Golden Mountain Dogs are large to extra-large dogs that stand 21.5–27.5 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 55–115 pounds.
Golden Mountain Dog Health
Unfortunately, Bernese Mountain Dogs and Berner mixes are known for having relatively short lifespans and developing serious and life-threatening genetic illnesses. While Golden Retrievers are often a healthy breed, mixing these breeds does not guarantee a healthy or long-lived puppy.
“I had a Bernese/Pyrenees mix and got him instead of getting a purebred Berner [hoping he would be healthier,]” says a comment addressing whether mixed breeds are always healthier than purebreds. “He died of histiocytosis (Berner genetic cancer) at age 7. So in my case, the mix did not extend his life.”
Some of the health issues to be aware of, if you own a Golden Mountain Dog, include:
- Chronic ear infections
- Eye and vision problems (e.g. cataracts, pigmentary uveitis, progressive retinal atrophy)
- Joint issues (e.g. hip and elbow dysplasia, patellar luxation)
- Back issues (e.g. degenerative myelopathy [Bernese Mountain Dog variant])
- Neurological issues (e.g. neuronal ceroid lipofuscinosis 5)
Where To Find Golden Mountain Dog Puppies
Golden Mountain Dogs are not bred by ethical or kennel club-affiliated breeders, and for that reason, we do not recommend buying a Golden Mountain Dog puppy. Backyard breeders and puppy mills producing this mix are motivated by profit and do not follow the correct procedures to ensure their mating pairs are genetically compatible. Not only does creating designer mixed breeds produce uncertain results, but it can also produce very unhealthy dogs.
Rather than buying a mixed breed from an unethical breeder, we recommend seeking out ethical breeders of purebred Golden Retrievers or purebred Bernese Mountain Dogs. Similarly, animal rescues specializing in this breed can help you connect with your dream dog. Here are a few resources to get you started.
Golden Mountain Dog FAQ
You’ve probably never met a Golden Mountain Dog in person, so since you can’t ask a GMD owner about life with this mix, we’ve collected some of the top questions to answer here and now! Let’s talk about some of the specifics of owning a Golden Mountain Dog.
Are Golden Mountain Dogs easy to train?
Yes. Both Golden Retrievers and Bernese Mountain Dogs are known for their easy-going yet intelligent personalities which make them excellent learners who are eager to learn. Most Golden Mountain Dogs pick up on training very quickly and enjoy following the rules and boundaries their humans set for them.
Do Golden Mountain Dogs bark a lot?
No, Golden Mountain Dogs do not bark more than the average dog and are considered moderate barkers who will mostly become vocal when they are alerting you to something they see or hear.
Do Golden Mountain Dogs shed a lot?
Yes. Golden Mountain Dogs shed year-round and are moderate to heavy shedders. Because of their long, dense fur, many benefit from regular brushing to remove stuck shed and debris. Often, Golden Mountain Dogs will also blow their coats twice a year as the seasons change during which time their shedding will become extremely heavy.
Are Golden Mountain Dogs hypoallergenic?
No. There is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog, but low-shedding dogs may be less likely to trigger allergies for some people. Golden Mountain Dogs are moderate to heavy shedders and are very likely to trigger allergies in people who react to dog dander.
How long do Golden Mountain Dogs live?
Based on the lifespans of the Golden Mountain Dog’s parent breeds, you can expect these dogs to live around 6–12 years. Bernese Mountain Dogs are notoriously short-lived, and it is thanks to these genes that many Golden Mountain Dogs pass away before their 10th birthdays.
Do Golden Mountain Dogs like to swim?
Sometimes! Golden Retrievers love to swim, and some Golden Mountain Dogs inherit this love of the water. Bernese Mountain Dogs can become good, strong swimmers and many enjoy it, but the urge to jump in lakes, pools, and oceans comes from the Retriever side of the Golden Mountain Dog’s heritage.
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