Not surprisingly, there are many people who love the Bernese Mountain Dog, but not their short lifespan. People would like to have a dog with a chance for a longer life. Early generations of dogs from the Vitality Project may vary in looks and temperament; however, we expect to see improved longevity in the first generation. Considering that the average Bernese Mountain Dog lives only seven years, we hypothesis that there is a good chance that the majority of Vitality Project pups will live at least that long. This is why we track each and every puppy to document if we are making progress in improving longevity.
Interested in a Puppy?
We are very particular about out puppy parents. Because of the nature of this program, puppy parents become members and active participants in the Vitality Project. This is a commitment that will last at least the life of the dog. All pups will be temperament tested and placed into homes compatible with their personalities. People who want a puppy from the Vitality Project must agree to the below requirements:
Homes will be asked to keep their dog intact (not spayed or neutered) until the next generation is selected for breeding. This is done between 1 and 3 years of age. For homes of female pups this would also include potentially whelping a litter. Dogs not selected to breed must then be spayed or neutered. No breeding without the consent and oversight of the Vitality Project will be permitted.
It is understood that each and every puppy produced, whether the puppy is eventually bred or not, must be followed throughout their life. Owners must be willing to stay closely in touch with the Vitality Project, run testing as requested by the Vitality Project, pass along any and all health information, and fill out personality and temperament questionnaires . Knowing whether or not we are making progress depends on knowing the status of each and every puppy produced.
Homes will provide a high standard of care to each pup. We seek homes in which the puppies will not be left alone for long periods either through a person at home with them, taken along with a family member throughout the day, or through a doggy daycare program. We highly encourage obedience training and other programs such as drafting and agility in line with the puppy’s physical development.
If at any time the puppy parent becomes unable to keep a pup, the Vitality Project must be contacted first to place the dog in a home approved by the Vitality Project. No puppy produced by the Vitality Project will be surrendered to a shelter or rescue organization.
If you are interested in being part of the Vitality Project and would like to be considered for a puppy, please contact us immediately!
To Our Silent Partners
A heartfelt thank you to all breeders and stud owners who have had the courage to take this first step. We recognize that it is far easier and safer to sit by the sidelines and critique something like this, as opposed to taking action. While we wish we could publicly thank you by name, we will honor your privacy, a wise step at the beginning of such a project. But we commend you! And you have our complete gratitude!
At this time, we are not revealing what we are crossing to to discourage some individuals that might be looking for the next great hybrid to exploit. We are choosing anonymity at this time to protect any outside breed, as we are concerned with the welfare of all dogs, not just the Bernese Mountain Dog. Since our goal is not to be secretive, but rather respectful of the privacy of our members, therefore meticulous records are being kept in a private database. Eventually all breeding combinations will be made public when the time is appropriate.