The Rafeiro do Alentejo Saint Bernard Mix, is a mixed breed dog resulting from breeding the Rafeiro do Alentejo and the Saint Bernard. Both of these dogs can be friendly but personalities differ, so you never know. The Portuguese Watchdog is known for being calm, sober, and protective. All dogs need proper socialization and that will be a big factor in how they interact with others. What does this mixed breed look and act like? Is it more like the Rafeiro do Alentejo 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 Rafeiro do Alentejo 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 Rafeiro do Alentejo Saint Bernard Mix puppy. That is, if they have any Rafeiro do Alentejo 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. If you have a few minutes, please sign our petition to stop puppy mills.
Rafeiro do Alentejo History
The Rafeiro do Alentejo is not a common breed of dog. It is also known as the Portuguese Watchdog. There is not a lot of information on it, but it is believed to have originated in the Middle East. Like most dog breeds they were used to protect flocks of sheep and goats in the mountains. As well as while they migrated their animals back and forth from the mountains to the lowlands. It is a large dog with a very large head.
Saint Bernard History
The Saint Bernard, also known as the Alpine Spaniel, St Bernhardog or the Bernhardinner 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 Great Pyreneess brought from the Colony of Great Pyrenees in the 1850s. The Great Pyrenees 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.
Rafeiro do Alentejo
Height: 25 - 29 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 75 - 110 lb.
Lifespan: 12 - 14 years
Height: 28 - 35 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 140 - 120 lb.
Lifespan: 8-10 years
The Rafeiro do Alentejo and the Saint Bernard might be a little bit spunky. They can be an inquisitive little fella so keep on the lookout for that behavior! All dogs need attention and don't want to be left alone. That's why you have a pet, right? Plan on putting forth effort to socialize her as this will reap dividends in the long run. Please use always use positive reinforcement even though they can have a mind of their own. Enjoy being with your new mixed breed and love the relationship you will have with them.
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. We obviously recommend that you look for a reputable animal rescue in your area to find your new mixed breed. Health clearances prove that a dog has been tested for and cleared of a particular condition.
The Rafeiro do Alentejo mixed with the Saint Bernard might be prone to joint dysplasia, epilepsy, luxating patellas, among others.
Note that these are just common problems in both breeds.
What are the grooming requirements?
Even if you know the breed, sometimes it is hard to tell if it will be a heavy shedder or a light shedder. 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.
What are the exercise requirements?
Plan on taking them for extremely long walks and hikes to keep their energy level down. This mix will more than likely have a high energy level. 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. A good diet to look into is Raw Food Diet. A raw food diet will be especially good for the Wolf background.
Overfeeding any dog is not a good idea as that can really exacerbate health problems such as elbow and hip dysplasia.
I good diet to look into is Raw Food Diet. A raw food diet will be especially good for the Wolf background."