The Appenzeller Sennenhunde!

The Appenzeller Sennenhunde is one of the four Swiss mountain dog breeds and is considered rare and threatened by extinction. It got its name from the Appenzell region which was its original breeding territory and Sennenhunde which means the dog of the Alpine dairymen. It has a compact and muscular body with a back that is moderately long and straight and a deep broad chest that reaches to the elbow. Its skull is fairly flat which is relatively broad especially between the ears. It has almond shaped eyes and ears hanging down flat and close to the cheeks. It has a firm and close fitting double coat. This breed is affectionately called “Blaze” due to the white blaze on its nose and forehead. It has its own trademark which is a post horn tail. The Appenzell Mountain Dog and the Appenzell Cattle Dog are its other names.

Some Quick Facts:

Life Expectancy:
12-15 years

Energy Level:

Living Conditions:
Farm or rural environment.


Exercise Needs:
Needs sustained outdoor activity with open running; occassional mental tasks.

Breed Group:


19-24 inches

55 to 70 pounds

Standard Hair Colors:
Black or havana brown with symmetrical tan and white markings

National breed club:
Appenzell Mountain Dog Club of America

Appenzeller Sennenhunde Skills

An Appenzeller Sennenhunde breeder’s standard is basically a dog that would work tirelessly the whole day in all kinds of weather and still be able to stay watchful throughout the night. Anything less is undesirable. This breed has been known to be fearless farm or guard dogs whose work includes herding cattle, guarding the household and performing general farm work. At present, they are popular pets or utility dogs and excel in agility events. Their use as escort, protection, rescue and tracking dogs are fast gaining acceptance, quite a long way from its original work as a helper to alpine dairy farmers.

Appenzeller Sennenhunde Personality

An Appenzeller Sennenhunde is a lively and confident breed whose main source of happiness is to be given tasks to do to keep it occupied. It demonstrates special affection towards its human family but is naturally suspicious of strangers. Obedience and social skills are easily learned by this intelligent breed. It is quite accepting of its master’s dominance and exhibits a very strong group instinct. Good treatment of this dog results to evident love for children. A special close relationship with women has been observed in this breed probably due to their constant presence during the raising period.

Exercise Needs

An inactive lifestyle is not suitable for an Appenzeller Sennenhunde. Being active herding dogs, they require regular exercise, tasks and work.

Living Conditions

Apartment life is definitely not for an Appenzeller Sennenhunde as it does not take well to indoor environment. Neither is it suited to be kept outside of the house in a kennel. This breed truly belongs to a farm or rural environment where it can have a simple shelter of its own, where he can go in and out as it pleases. The place, which is often chosen by the dog itself, should give a good overview of the territory. It does very well living with its people so much so that the surest way to produce an ill-humored and dangerous Appenzeller Sennenhunde is to keep it in a place with no contact at all from humans or members of the same species.

Grooming Requirements

It is quite easy to take care of an Appenzeller Sennenhunde’s coat as it does not need constant brushing. However, more frequent brushing is required after the first change of coat takes place.

Health Issues

It is a generally healthy breed but may be susceptible to hip dysplasia.

If you liked this dog…

...consider looking into the possibilities of having a Collie. Considered one of the most valuable country dogs, it was specially developed for herding while its narrow-headed streamlined variety is bred for showy appearances.

appenzeller sennenhunde


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