Testimonials – Mini Bernedoodles

Brady (Parents: Lulu x Dizzy)
Owners: The Marianis
Winchester, MA

Brady1-large“We can’t believe Brady is six months old! He is amazing. He is calm yet playful, affectionate, and a total love. Literally nothing phases him. He has been exposed to thunder, fireworks, loud mechanical noises, vacuums right up to his crate, umbrellas, and all of the other things people find puppies dislike, with no issues. He does not like to venture very far in the dark, but that’s useful when we don’t want to have long nighttime rambles! We have taken him to our older son’s soccer games, and he just sits there and lets his adoring public come over to say hello.

He is beyond wonderful with kids of all sizes and has developed a certain rapport with our cat (though I wouldn’t describe them as friends, they have no issues being next to one another, and even seem to play together a bit). He barked inside of the house for the first time ever two days ago, and it looks like he did so because we had a fox skulking around the house. He prefers to be with us all the time, but has no problem going into his crate when we need him to do so. He is quiet as a mouse from the time we crate him at night until we get him out in the morning (typically between 9:30 p.m. and 6 a.m.).

Brady3-largeTraining has gone very easily. He has occasional stubborn moments, but for the most part, unless we are working on something brand new or really difficult, we do not need to treat with food any longer as he is extremely responsive to praise and petting. We had a trainer out to the house once, and really there wasn’t much that he thought Brady needed to have done differently except a few tips on voice, tone, and reinforcing command with visual cues. He could not get over how smart and gentle Brady is.

Brady2-largeBrady is very social, both with people and with other dogs. He goes to puppy play group two days a week and his tail starts wagging the moment the van pulls up at the house to take him there. The biggest training challenges we have had with him came from his desire to meet and greet every person and dog he sees. It has taken him a while to understand that when we are walking, not every person or dog is going to want to stop and meet him, and that there will be times when we don’t want him to stop. He’s finally gotten the hang of that in the last few weeks. The last big basic thing that we continue to need to work on is jumping up on new people. If we know someone new is coming to the house, we keep a leash on him and he is getting much better about not jumping. I would say he is 90 percent there. He walks beautifully on a leash until we are about fifty feet from returning to our house, then he gets the zoomies and either pulls or tries to grab the leash. We generally stop and put him into sit, down for a few seconds, then resume the walk. Normally we only have to do that once. He is still a puppy, though, as you can see from his morning routine which I have in the video below!

In short, he is the perfect dog for us, and we can’t thank you enough.” ~Amy and John Mariani

Motley (Parents: Sheena x Pickle)
Owner: Jamie Amell
St. Catharines, ON

Motley5-large“This is Motley – he lives in St. Catharines, ON, with Jamie and Billy. He is a mini bernedoodle from Sheena and Pickle (08-27-12). He is about 50 lbs. but thinks he is a 5 lb. lap dog. He has a wavy coat.

Some words we would use to describe Motley are affectionate, happy, goofy, friendly, smart, easy-going and lazy. He is very laid-back. He loves to sleep in and relax but will run around and play when the time is right. The cottage in the summer is his happy place where he will run around and swim and play like crazy. He loves to go for boat cruises.

He is super smart, was very easy to train and has always been a huge love bug. He loves to snuggle. Almost every morning when our alarm goes off he knows he can come into bed so he will quietly come into our room and put his paws up and wait for a boost. He has the most expressive human-like eyes that completely make my heart melt.

Motley has been coming to work with me since he was 9 weeks old, which has made him extremely social with people of all ages, shapes and sizes. He loves everyone and is not shy to lean on a stranger or sit on their feet. He is our office greeter and official mascot. Every person that comes into the office or meets him absolutely adores him. He is literally a celebrity around my office and in our neighborhood. When we are out and about we get stopped constantly with people wondering what kind of dog he is and then commenting on how awesome he is.

Because of his laid-back nature and incredible social skills we decided he would make the perfect therapy dog. He passed his CGN test in April and has proved himself to be an amazing therapy dog on the few visits we have been on so far. Motley is our first dog and we could not imagine life without him! Sherry picked the perfect puppy to fit our family. He makes us smile and laugh every day and we couldn’t love him more!

Please feel free to email me if you have any questions. I love talking about Motley and about SwissRidge Kennels and the amazing job that Sherry Rupke does! I couldn’t imagine getting a dog from anywhere else.” ~Jamie Amell

Waldo (Parents: Mango x Dizzy)
Owners: The Pulices
Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, QC

“It’s been about 7 weeks since we came to SwissRidge and picked up Waldo, and our lives have been forever changed. She has captured our hearts, to the point where we are wondering why we waited so long to adopt a dog. (She is the first dog for both of us.)

Waldo is a sweet, loving, mischievous, and funny little dog. Always wakes up with bounds of energy and so happy to see us. (Even though it’s usually between 5:30 and 6:00 a.m.!) She walks with pride in her step, obviously thinking “I’m a SwissRidge Bernedoodle, dammit!!” She’s had no trouble making new friends, both 2 and 4 legged. Whenever we take her anywhere, people always stop to pet her and ask what type of dog she is and gush about how gorgeous she is!

She is about 20 pounds now, at 22 weeks, so if we use your calculations (per the book 20/22 x 52) she will be much bigger than the original 30 lbs. prediction. It doesn’t matter, because no matter her size we will love her! Thank you for selecting her for us, she couldn’t be a better fit for us.” ~Terri Pulice

Sula (Parents: Juno x Eddie)
Owners: The Murphys
Salem, MA

Sula1-large“Being the proud pack leader of three bernedoodles, I can honestly say that I am not sure if I will ever adopt another family member from anyone but Sherry Rupke and her team at SwissRidge Kennels.

We sent in our first adoption form over 4 years ago when I fell in LOVE with a tri-color puppy on the SwissRidge website. I had my heart set on a puppy just like the one I saw in the picture. I stalked the SwissRidge website day after day. I will never forget the day Sherry called me out of the blue. Sherry said, ‘I have a puppy, but he’s not tri-color.’ She sent me a picture and the whole family fell in love with him. We didn’t need a tri-color pup. We needed this black standard bernedoodle with a white cross on his chest, and a tan swirl over his eyes!

From that day on, we knew this pup we named Raglan was going to be a wonderful addition to our growing family. He was an adorable pup, full of energy, dedication, and spunk. We loved him so much that we knew we had room for another. Our youngest daughter wanted a doodle she could bond with, something smaller, so the following Christmas Santa left a dog crate filled with toys with a note saying we were on the list for a mini bernedoodle. Sula was born the next month and our pack was growing! Sula added a new energy to our pack. She was a playful pup who tested any and all limits she was given. With the help of a local trainer, and a quick education in being the leader of my pack, Raglan and Sula were a dream come true.

Now that we had a mini and a standard bernedoodle, my love for SwissRidge doodles continued to grow, I hinted around that one more pup would complete our pack. A tiny bernedoodle would make our family complete. I never considered myself to be a small dog person, but there was something about these tiny pups that turned me around. My husband must be as crazy as I am because he contacted Sherry on his own and wanted to surprise me with my third bernedoodle for my birthday!

Raglan was from the litter of Chantelle, an Apricot standard poodle, and Dominique, a handsome Bernese mountain dog. Raglan is a wonderful pup, but he did take some time and effort to get him that way. I’d say that was our fault though. Even though I read the books and studied the puppy handbook, I still made some mistakes. Luckily with the support of a great trainer, I realized what I was doing wrong. Raglan is a wonderful companion and family member. He walks down the street like he is a Clydesdale horse and if one of his pack members breaks away from the pack he does not stand down until they return. He is loyal, loving, and with his long legged stature and winning personality he is the best of all worlds. Raglan will be four in June 2014.

Sula is a mini doodle from Juno, a Bernese mountain dog, and Eddie, a poodle, born January 2, 2012. She is a total love and attention hound. Throughout my day I always have the feeling that sometimes I am being watched. As I take a glance around, Sula’s eyes are directly focused on me. If I leave the house she will assume her position in the front bay window and wait for my return. Sula loves everything and everyone. She always wants to know what is going on. Whether you are driving a car, sitting on the couch, or yes, even sitting at the kitchen counter, Sula is right by your side. She is very vocal and opinionated and will express her opinion any chance she gets! We only wish we knew what she was trying to say.

Sula9-largeGibbs is a tiny bernedoodle from the litter of Kia and Pickle, born May 24, 2013. He is as smart as he is adorable. When I brought Gibbs in for his first vet appointment, the first thing the vet said is, ‘He is stink’in cute.’ Gibbs can keep up with the big dogs, but can also be a sweet cuddly lap dog at the drop of a dime. Never having a small dog before (Gibbs weighs 15 pounds at 11 months), we decided to fly from Boston to California with Gibbs in a carry-on bag not knowing what to expect. With a five hour flight ahead of us, we were prepared for anything and everything! Let’s just say we were over-prepared. Gibbs was unbelievable! He cuddled up in a ball in his special travel bag and didn’t bark or whimper during the entire flight! I was truly amazed at how well he adjusted to this new adventure.

You may ask, ‘Why am I telling you all this?’ Well, the reason is because there is something so special about the puppies that Sherry and her SwissRidge Team create. We knew Sherry was special the first time we emailed her. We knew she and her pups were worth every penny we would spend on them. Once you make the commitment to Sherry and her pups you will never look back, or wonder if you made the right choice. And then, when you hold your precious treasure in your arms for the very first time, you will not be able to control that warm and fuzzy feeling that will run through your entire body. The testing, the care, the follow-through, and most importantly her love for her job are just some of the reasons why Sherry Rupke is the very best Breeder of the Pack.” ~M. Murphy

Uli (Parents: Molly x Pickle)
Owners: The Cooks
Broomfield, CO

Uli-largeMeet Uli. She is owned by the Cook family. Her parents are Molly and Pickle. She was born 10/4/2013. She is a mini F1b bernedoodle who weighs 20 lbs. at 21 weeks. Her final weight should be in the high 30 lb. range.

Debbie says: “My husband wanted a Bernese Mountain Dog or a Poodle. I didn’t want the associated health issues with either breed, especially the average life span of the Bernese. While searching the internet for options, I found Sherry’s site. I had no idea that a hybrid existed. My interest was peaked with the Bernedoodle, but there was the initial sticker shock for a pup. I tried to find a breeder in the U.S. There are a few, but I wanted a smaller dog – medium sized at most to hopefully prolong it’s life span. Our family was in love with the Bernedoodle. I inquired with every U.S. breeder that I could find. Not one was successfully breeding medium sized dogs. My search returned me to SwissRidge Kennels. I read Sherry’s book and was sold on the breed and her as our breeder.

I was drawn to the effort that Sherry puts into selecting the breeding pair. The U.S. breeders that I had spoken with seemed to lack this forethought. My impression of their process was this: I have a beautiful, affectionate Bernese female and am rolling the dice with a male poodle – he seems like a great guy. I hope the mating is successful and I will analyze the puppies’ genetics and temperaments to determine if I am following the right breeding path.

Granted, all hybrid breeders do this, and it is an art, but Sherry seems to take a more scientific approach before the mating occurs.

MiniBerneDoodle-largeAfter A LOT of discussion and thought, as spending this much money on a dog and a dog from Canada was scary for us – I spent a day pondering it after the husband said do it – I sent a deposit for a ‘mini’ and we were matched to an F1b litter. My wait was shorter because I guess people didn’t want an F1b puppy?? I researched Goldendoodle websites and discovered that MANY Goldendoodles are F1bs, the breeders just don’t advertise it. And I figured, well if the Goldendoodle breeders have been doing it for years and years, then I will trust this stranger in Canada.

After excellent breeding, and a lot of worrying on my part, Molly had her puppies. I must have stared at the litter’s photos for hours. After fantastic early puppy care, Sherry selected a spirited female for us. Uli is a perfect fit for our active and loudish family.

She arrived on her 8th week birthday and was shipped from Ontario to Denver. The arrival day was very long for Uli, but you could not tell. The paper in her kennel was dry. She was happy to be out of that crate, but didn’t seem phased AT ALL by the long travel. When I do it again, I will fly to Sherry and bring the pup home in-cabin. Uli’s travel was overly stressful for me!!!

All of the above breeding attributes were evident when we held Uli for the first time. My husband said ‘You get what you pay for.’ Training is beyond easy. Uli loves to learn and please. Potty training was shockingly a breeze.

Uli has the perfect combination of Berner and Poodle traits. She immediately adapted to each family member in a unique way. She must be a dog genius and is the perfect amount of spunk. She does not shed – not a trait that I thought I needed but a definite surprise, and now a requirement. Uli loves everyone that she meets, especially young kids. She believes every dog that she meets should play. Uli will play all day long but settles immediately when in her crate, on the couch or on the bed. The kids love how excited Uli is to see them after school, and you can hardly see her wagging tail. She has the most beautiful multicolored coat and white-tipped black tail. She loves to cuddle. She’s very playful and goofy.

Thank You, Sherry!!  Love, the Cooks.” ~Debbie Cook

Beckett & Finley (Parents: Sheena x Pickle)
Owners: The Hutchins
Clovis, CA

FinLay3-largeMeet Finley, DOB 8/27/12, and Beckett, DOB 11/29/13. These full blood sisters from Sheena and Pickle are a hoot! They are both owned by the Hutchins family. Dawn says: “So many funny stories, not sure which to share –Beckett jumping into the bushes and Finley following her (which she knows are or, rather, WERE off limits) to play Hide n Seek through the hedges (which has offered me the opportunity to re-landscape my backyard), to wherever Finley goes, Beckett follows, a sort of ‘Me and my Shadow’ type of sisterhood.

They are hardly ever apart unless Mom separates them (into their crates) or for the ‘Big Girls’ walk (where I walk Finley and Anni, our 11.5 year old Bichon). When Finley races around the yard taunting Beckett with toys and ‘you-can’t-catch-me!’ antics, it is hilarious to watch little Beckett tiptoeing, trying to stalk Finley from behind. But alas, Finley is too quick for little Beckett. As the weeks pass and Beckett matures, the distance between them in their cat-and-mouse game lessens. In a matter of time, Beckett will have Finley by the tail, matching her step by step.

These two ‘Bookends’ are definitely two peas in a pod! They bring so much laughter, joy, fun and lightheartedness to our everyday life. Our lives have been changed forever by Finley and Beckett’s adoring presence in our family *:x lovestruck” ~Dawn Hutchin

Bernie (Parents: Abbie x Sting)
Owners: The Fairmans
Markham, ON

Bernie-largeMeet Bernie. He is a larger mini bernedoodle weighing in at 50 lbs. He was born July 25, 2011. He is owned by the Fairman family.

Richard says: “Bernie is a great dog and has been an integral part of the family from the first day we brought him home. He has a great temperament and if you can believe it a great sense of humor. He is very intelligent, which is both a plus and a minus. On the plus side he was basically house-trained from the time he walked in the door. We have to think very hard to remember him having an accident in the house. He was very easy to train. In each of the 3 or 4 training classes we attended, he was always in the running for the best dog in the class. On the negative side, if you are not consistent and develop your role as the leader of the pack, you will quickly find that he starts training you.

We have never had any issues of aggression towards humans or other animals since we have had him. In fact he at times can be overly friendly and become over-excited when greeting someone new. He is definitely a conversation piece. We have not met a person yet who is not immediately smitten by him and wants to take him home. We were in Hilton Head last March and walking the beach or in town, we were constantly stopped by everyone wanting to pat him and find out more about him.

BernieMiniBerneDoodlesRef-largeSherry at SwissRidge is great. If you take the time to fill out your questionnaire completely and honestly, she is very good at matching you with a pup that matches your family. We originally wanted a standard but the timing didn’t work. I asked if she could provide me with a mini that would be close to 50 lbs. Bernie at his last checkup weighed in at 50 lbs. As stated prior, he is the perfect dog for our family and our stage in life.

Sherry has always been there to answer any questions we have had in a timely manner and has always been very supportive.

As much as I feel my opinion is biased, over the summer SwissRidge held its first annual Doodle Romp. Over 80 owners from all over North America attended. It was at this event that I realized that Bernie was not the exception but the norm when it came to SwissRidge Doodles. Both the owners and dogs seemed cut from the same cloth. With over 80 dogs engaging in various forms of free play and interacting with a large number of humans, there were not any issues of aggressiveness or inappropriate behavior that I witnessed. SwissRidge owners are very special and dedicated to the breed as witnessed by the SwissRidge group on Facebook. Here you find owners who share their good times, the rough spots, and very good advice and support.

Some tips I can give are to find a good training book and enroll your pup in puppy classes and others as needed. As stated the doodles are very smart dogs who are easily trained, but you need to know how and be consistent to establish you and your family are the pack leaders. Because dogs are pack animals, when you bring your pup home, crate him in your bedroom at night. They want to be part of the pack. This was something we came to understand by accident and had reconfirmed in talking with others and reading training materials.

You cannot go wrong with a doodle, especially one from SwissRidge!! Sherry does a great job providing well-mannered, healthy pups that meet the needs of their owners. As soon as we can convince my wife that Bernie needs a sibling for company, I will be in line for a standard doodle. Good luck and feel free to ask if you have any further questions.” ~Richard Fairman

Gus (Parents: Sheena x Pickle)
Owners: The Scheelers
Pickering, ON

gus-vicki-scheeler-mini-bernedoodle“Gus has the most special personality ever. He is fun, loving, goofy as well as very laid-back and calm. All he wants to do is be around his humans and give as much love as he receives. He is so playful and gentle. He loves playing with his sister cats but just as easily settles down when they no longer want the attention. Gus is an all-around perfect dog and I never could have expected such an amazing boy to be part of our lives. He is my love and we are his.” ~Jamie Scheeler

Maia (Parents: Zoey x Crumpet)
Owners: The Connors
Toronto, ON

maia-heather-connor-mini-bernedoodle“In short, she is amazing! We are very pleased with how she is fitting in with our family. The boys love her, as do my husband and I. I was not expecting any therapeutic benefit from her until she was older and a little more trained, but we were pleasantly surprised to see our five-year-old’s anxiety and independence improve within the first few weeks.

On a funny note, Owen went around and told everyone that Maia is a rescue dog. I couldn’t help but laugh, as an expensive dog is the exact opposite of a rescue. When I explained to him that we did not rescue her, he looked up at me and softly said, ‘No, mama. I mean she rescues me.’ It was a very sweet moment that perfectly sums up how he feels about his dog.

Maia is very emotionally intuitive. When one of the boys are in pain she immediately crawls into their lap and burrows her head in their neck. We did not train her for this, rather it is something she has done since the day she came home. She seems to know the difference between angry/tantrum cry and hurt cry. When they are fighting or mad, she does not climb on them but rather sits next to them and waits it out. Her natural response to the emotional energy in the room is very neat to see.

maia-heather-connor-mini-bernedoodle-2On a training front – her trainer is VERY impressed with her. She is very eager to please and is picking things up quickly. She is doing remarkably well. She is doing the classic commands ‘come’ ‘sit,’ ‘down’ and ‘stand.’ We are also using ‘touch’ as an alternative to come, where she must come and touch her nose to your hand. She is working on reverse call, where I hold her and tell her who to go to, and then she must find them. She is also working on extended stay’ and depending on the day and her mood is up to two minutes. She is learning hand signals for down and sit, as well as heel and switching sides on command. She is good at leave it and we are able to successfully place treats on each on her paws while she waits for permission to eat them. She is very well behaved in public and has earned her service dog in training’ vest! We should receive it next week.

You should know that her Vet was very impressed with her. She is his first Bernedoodle and he raved about her jaw alignment, hips and coat. His exact words were This is a very hearty, healthy and beautifully well-bred animal.

Her energy level is perfect. She is mellow yet playful. All in all, we could not be happier with her. Thank you so much for placing her with us! We will let you know how she progresses from a service perspective, especially now that we will be ramping up her training.” ~Heather Connor

Heidi (Parents: Daisy x Eddie)
Owners: The Levys
Chicago, IL

heidi_1Heidi is a mini bernedoodle out of Daisy and Eddie’s litter. She was born April 2009. She is owned by the Levy family in Chicago, IL. Mike and Rebecca say: “Heidi has been everything we expected and more. She’s as cute as can be, very smart, and full of personality.  She mastered several commands within weeks of getting home, and we’re still stopped everywhere we go (everyone asks about her!). She’s known at the park as the ‘Fun Director’ as she always makes sure everyone is having a great time. SwissRidge has done an absolutely wonderful job in breeding these dogs. Heidi has been the absolute perfect mix; she’s fun and she LOVES curling up on the couch next to us at night.” ~Mike and Rebecca Levy

Brandy (Parents: Baily x Eddie)
Owner: Lily Ann
Toronto, ON

Meet Brandy. She is a mini bernedoodle owned by Lily Ann. She is out of Bailey and Eddie, born May 31, 2009. Lily Ann says this about Brandy: “Brandy is such a sweetheart. She is such a friendly pup, who insists on saying hi to everyone she sees. She is a ball of energy and full of character. She’s finished puppy school and has learned a ton of tricks. She loves to learn new tricks because she knows she’ll get lots of belly rubs and kisses. We are so proud of how much she’s learned in such a short amount of time.
She loves going for walks, especially through the trail behind our house. She’ll always find a stick on our walks and carries it proudly back home. At night, she’ll lay by our feet as we watch TV. Brandy will occasionally come with me to work. When we’re at work, she’s very obedient and will just sit by me and play with her toys. We’re so happy to have Brandy join our family!!” ~Lily Ann

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