Entlebucher Mountain Dog

  • Overview

    2011 was an exciting year for the Entlebucher Mountain Dog. It was the first year that they were seen competing as members of the Herding group in the American Kennel Club's dog show. Entlebucher Mountain Dogs are the smallest of the four Swiss Mountain Dogs. They stand between 17 and 21 inches tall and weigh between 45 and 65 pounds.

  • Personality

    Entlebucher Mountain Dogs are agreeable dogs who are not easily rattled. They devote themselves to their family and to the jobs they are given to perform, which makes them excellent competitors in canine sports and athletic activities. When they are not concentrated on a task, Entlebuchers are cheerful, spirited playmates who enjoy tussling with children and rough-housing in a friendly fashion with other dogs.

    The Entlebucher's original purpose — he's a drover who responded acutely to his owners commands and often lived in the home — means that they were bred to bond extremely closely to their masters and read their moods. They are used to being guardians, which means they are extremely protective and occasionally suspicious or aloof around strangers, so socializing them with friends outside the family will help them flourish in many environments. Entlebuchers who do not work as herders need plenty of activity and exercise to expend all the energy they save for herding.

    Entlebucher Mountain Dogs are still somewhat rare, so they may be somewhat difficult to find. For those who make the effort to own one, they make dutiful, watchful companions who will enjoy living in active homes where they have plenty of opportunities to expend their boundless energy.

  • Coat Care

    Entlebucher Mountain Dogs have shiny black coats with symmetrical white coloring on their chests, feet and tips of their tails and a white blaze on their muzzles. Areas in between the black and white are tan or rust-colored. They have a thick coat with a dense undercoat and a smooth over coat. Some dogs have naturally bobbed tails.

Entlebucher Mountain Dog
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The Entlebucher's short coat sheds a manageable amount, but it does shed consistently throughout the year. Weekly brushing will help to control the shedding.

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With preparation, perseverance and a positive attitude, bathing can become a fun and fulfilling part of the regular grooming cycle, while helping your dog avoid many diseases and infections.

Smooth coated breeds adhere to the general rule of dog bathing: about once every three months. The coat should end up fresh smelling, shiny, with no loose or shedding hair. First give the dog a good brushing to remove dead hair and mats. Place a rubber mat in the tub to provide secure footing and fill the tub with three to four inches of lukewarm water. Use a spray hose, pitcher or unbreakable cup to wet the dog, taking caution to avoid getting water in the eyes, ears and nose. Massage in pet shampoo, saving the head for last. Immediately rinse thoroughly, starting with the head to prevent soap from dripping into the eyes. Towel dry. Wipe wrinkled breeds with a soft cloth and make sure they are totally dry after bathing.

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Hair Clipping

Clipping or trimming your dog’s coat is far easier than you would ever imagine. With the right clipper, trimmer and scissors, giving your dog a haircut is easy on your wallet and your schedule.

Dogs with smooth coats generally only require trims and tidying up in areas of excessive hair growth using a trimmer or blunt scissors. It's always wise to take a dog for a short walk or exercise to calm them down before trimming. Remember to brush the coat first to remove any tangles and mats. Don't forget to trim around the paws, pads, tail, chest and sanitary areas, as needed. The coat should lay flat and smooth against the body when finished.

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Many dog owners are apprehensive about trimming their dog’s nails because they are nervous about cutting into the quick. But with the right conditioning and careful cutting, nail clipping can be a simple, stress-free activity for you and your dog.

Provide your dog with plenty of positive reinforcement and even treats to help associate nail clipping with a positive experience.  As you start to clip, gently press on your dog’s paws to help him become accustomed to the feeling of having his nails clipped. Then, work gradually, shaving down just a thin portion of the nail at first to make sure you don’t reach the quick. Clip one nail, reward your dog with a treat, and stop to give him some positive reinforcement before moving on. Gradually increase the number of nails you clip in one sitting to help your dog get used to the process. Never trim extremely long nails down to a short nail in one sitting, because this is an excellent way to accidently quick the dog’s nail. Instead, work gradually, shaving small portions of your dog’s nails off each time.

You can tell if you’re getting close to the quick by the texture of your dog’s nail. The nail is hard closer to the surface and becomes softer as you get closer to the quick. If your dog’s nail starts to feel softer, that’s a good indication that you’re getting close to the quick.

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Eyes / Ears

Not all breeds and coat styles require routine trimming in and around the eyes and ears but all should undergo regular inspection and cleaning around these sensitive areas. Doing so will help prevent the development of infections that could seriously damage these amazing organs.

It is always important to routinely clean your dog's eyes and ears, and examine for potential infections. Some smooth-coated dogs, like Basenjis and Boxers, and dogs with large ears, like Weimaraners and Great Danes, have sensitive ears that should be checked  weekly for infection and cleaned with a cotton ball. Gently wipe a cotton ball moistened with mineral oil, olive oil or witch hazel in your dog's ear, being careful to avoid the ear canal. Never use a Q-Tip, which could cause damage to the inner ear if your dog suddenly shakes or jerks his head. Bushy hair growth within the ear can be thinned with tweezers or blunt scissors. Use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around the eyes, ears and face. If you have a small dog, like an Italian Greyhound, take special care to  clean around their eyes with a cotton ball or soft cloth and use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around their eyes to make sure they are comfortable. Dogs with facial wrinkles, like French Bulldogs and Boston Terriers, should have their faces wiped down at least weekly to prevent infection.

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Many owners do not realize how important it is to brush your pet’s teeth on a regular basis. Some dogs are prone to dental problems and sensitive teeth, especially small dogs with tiny teeth and dogs with special diets. These problems can be easily combatted with frequent brushing.

Cavities are rare with dogs but gum disease caused by tartar buildup is not, which is why they require regular brushing with toothpaste and a toothbrush formulated specifically for dogs. While daily brushing is ideal, doing so on a weekly basis will be a big help in avoiding the need to bring your dog to a veterinarian for a cleaning, which usually has to be done under sedation.