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Do Bernedoodles Like To Swim?

Do Bernedoodles Like To Swim?

You might wonder if your Bernedoodle would love a dip in the pool. But do Bernedoodles like to swim?

Do you have to treat them any differently than other dogs that have taken a dip in the lake or family pool?

We must go into the parents’ background, a Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle. Then, we will look at the Bernedoodle and how to treat them differently. 

Bernese Mountain Dogs And Water

Show appreciation after an Accident

A Bernese Mountain Dog typically does not enjoy the water as other breeds naturally do.

They were originally bred in the Swiss mountains, where it is cold and snowy, and no significant bodies of water besides smaller ponds and creeks.

They do not have the instinct to swim like other dogs of similar size and weight, like the Newfoundland. 

Each dog is different and has their unique personality, but Bernese Mountain Dogs generally have to be trained at a young age to swim and enjoy the water.

It is not uncommon to see a Bernese wadding in ankle-deep shallows, but very rare to see one jump headfirst into the pool like a Golden Retriever. 

So to answer this question, Do Bernedoodles like to swim? Even with training at a young age, it is never guaranteed that the Bernese will ever enjoy swimming or learn how to.

They much prefer to be inside during hot weather. Snow, on the other hand, is different. They would gladly make a few snow angels with you over swimming in a lake. 

Poodles And Water

“Poodle” comes from the German term “to splash.” Poodles originated in Germany as water-retrieving hunting dogs. Poodles are natural-born swimmers by genetics. 

With webbed toes and a water-resistant coat, nothing stops a Poodle from taking a plunge into any body of water.

The original “Poodle cut” also has roots in helping the Poodle to swim faster. The tufts of hair strategically placed all over the body kept areas of the body sensitive to cold warm in colder water.

It is rare to see a Poodle who doesn’t gravitate toward the water. 

Do Bernedoodles Like To Swim?

With a combination of both parents differing views on water, your Bernedoodle could go either way.

Some Bernedoodles are more like their Bernese Mountain Dog ancestry and avoid water. Then others seem drawn to it, like their Poodle ancestry.

With mixed breeds, there can not be a breed standard on what to expect, though most Bernedoodles love the water after being taught to swim. 

can bernedoodles swim

Training Tips

Start Young

If you would like your dog to love the water in the future, then it’s best to start as a pup.

Playing in the bathtub during winter or in a small kiddie pool during the summer for smaller pups could get them exposure when they are too small to swim.

Frequent exposure will give your Bernedoodle better chances at loving water.

Start Small

Introducing water can be scary for the first few times. You would never want your dog’s first encounter with water to be diving right into the ocean.

Take baby steps until you can tell if your dog will take to the water well. Starting with a shallow pool or slow-moving creek is a good starting point.

Don’t Force It

If your Bernedoodle does not like swimming, do not try to force them to. You can not force a dog to swim if he does not like it.

Forcing your Bernedoodle to swim will only cause aggression that could make bath time a trigger. You will soon answer this question: Do Bernedoodles like to swim?

Increase Exposure

Once your dog has gotten a taste of what it’s like, gradually bring him into the deeper end and extend the time spent in the water.

With small increments of exposure, your Bernedoodle will love swimming in no time.

Talk To Your Breeder

If water is a big part of your lifestyle, talking to your breeder can give you a better idea of what to expect.

They would know if the parents loved the water and if the previous litters loved it. A positive water history will increase your chances of having a Bernedoodle that loves the water.

Give Praise And Treats

Bernedoodles love to make their owners happy. Giving them praise and a reward for doing something they are unsure about will likely get them to do it again.

Show By Example

Have them watch another dog first, especially if your Bernedoodle has never been around the water before.

Watching older dogs in the household they know and trust can get them to warm up to swimming faster.

If you have no other dogs, take them to a dog beach. They will love to play with the others and quickly trust them for water play.

Play Games

Bernedoodles are fun and playful dogs. Use this with games and toys your dog can’t resist. This is a surefire way of getting them to experience new things with enthusiasm.

Be Patient

Bernedoodles can be a little stubborn at times. Being patient and calm will help your Bernedoodle know that he is ok. Yelling and force will only make him hate water. Just keep trying and be patient.

Take Breaks

You should take a break and play another fun game, particularly if your dog has difficulty adjusting to the water or seems uncertain.

After they have seemed to calm down or forgotten about the water, try again slowly. Breaks are also helpful if they take well to water, giving their muscles a break until they have strengthened them.


When bringing any dog into the water, safety is always essential. To answer this question, Do Bernedoodles like to swim?

Follow these important safety tips, no matter how well your dog can swim or how experienced your dog may be.

Life jackets

Dog life jackets are essential for new and experienced swimmers. Especially in larger lakes and oceans where their feet can not touch the ground.

Cold Waters

Be mindful of colder waters and try to avoid it when possible. It does not take long for cold water to cause hypothermia.

Keep Ears Dry

Drying out your dog’s ears thoroughly will help prevent infections and swimmers’ ears. You can buy wax plugs that keep water from entering the ear canal that mold to any ear shape.

You can find these in any local pharmacy. When finished swimming, always dry the ear out completely.


Never let your dog swim unattended no matter how well they seem to swim.

Once your Bernedoodle has found the joys of your family pool, it might be hard to keep her out of it! You might be wondering how to care for their dense coats after water play to keep it free and healthy.

After Water Care


After swimming in any body of water, rinse off your Bernedoodle thoroughly. This is to get dirt or chemicals out of their hair.

Microfiber Towels

These towels are great for the curly and wavy coats of a Bernedoodle. It will dry them fast without causing frizz and damage to their hair follicles.

Microfiber is super absorbent; you can dry them mostly with one towel.

High-Velocity Dryer

If your Bernedoodle has a longer coat, you might want to invest in a professional-grade high-velocity dryer. These dryers cut your drying time by half.

They get deep down into the fur, unlike a normal hairdryer. Drying to the skin is especially important because if the water is left unable to dry on the skin because it can cause yeast infections.

Ear Drying Drops

Because these drops will help clean and dry up any water left in floppy ears. This will prevent infection and yeast from growing with repeated exposure to water.

Slicker Brush

You will want to use a slicker brush to de-matt after your Bernedoodle is dried. If this step is skipped, your Bernedoodle will start to matt close to the skin and need to be shaved down to relieve him.


A spray conditioner will help keep their coats nice and soft, especially if your dog has been swimming in the ocean or treated water.

This is the equivalent of us using aloe after being in the sun all day. It helps to protect and restore moisture to the hair follicle after prolonged water exposure.

Shave Down

It might be best to keep them shaved short for the summer, especially if you plan to be in the water with your dog. It will make swimming easier for them and grooming more manageable for you.


Bernedoodles all have unique personalities. Some love the water and swimming as much as a fish, while others don’t care for it as much.

With these tips, you can train your Bernedoodle to love the water as much as you. 

Other Bernedoodle articles

  1. How Long Do Mini Bernedoodles Live?
  2. How Much Do Bernedoodles Cost?
  3. When Do Bernedoodles Stop Growing?
  4. How Big Do Bernedoodles Get?
  5. Do Bernedoodles Shed?

Below is a Pinterest friendly photo…. so you can pin it to your Doodle Board!!

Do Bernedoodles like to go swimming?

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