The Entlebucher is lively, intelligent,
obedient, loyal and loving to its family. This dog needs to feel
purposeful and seeks approval from its master for its accomplishments.
They are incredibly faithful to their master and very protective of all
other family members. They are very playful, yet very astute when told
it's time to stop. With their intelligence and instincts, they learn their
boundaries quickly and easily. Entlebuchers are 'thinking' dogs, and
innate problem solvers.
They can be persistent when they want something,
but always polite.
persistence and determination is evidenced early on.
At eight weeks, Alida Delux was absolutely as determined as an
Entle can be that she was going to use the dog door. I really didn’t
like the idea. At that stage I wanted to be present when she was with the
big dogs. I was afraid that she would get hurt. She headed after the big
dogs every time they went out through the dog door. Unfortunately, she had
no trouble getting out whenever I took my eyes off of her. She could get
difficulty. However, coming back in was another story. There is a little
step outside and the outside of the door is therefore lower than the
inside. She had great difficulty hoisting her puppy belly in as her hind
legs were treading nothing but air. She would wail for help when she got
stuck, but she persisted in trying. In no time, she was somehow launching
herself back in, delighted to be such a grown up dog. By then I had given
up trying to intercept her exits as I had determined that she was quite
safe. Henri was her protector/guardian.
Oona was initially not very
nice to Alida. She tended to discipline Alida more energetically than
necessary when the puppy violated a dog rule. Henri quickly intervened
and had zero tolerance for Oona’s excesses. Henri disciplined Oona
rather aggressively when he thought her behavior was excessive and then
he placed himself between Oona and the puppy. Very quickly Oona’s
behavior changed and they then all got along well until
Alida became an adult. Henri displayed similar protective behavior
toward Oona when she was a pup and my old lab was too aggressive with
Henri was always tolerant
of pups but in his later years preferred that they leave him alone... he
avoided them as much as possible. I guess he thought he had trained
enough of them.
Henri and Mira would
play fetch till they dropped if you let them. But when there is a group of
dogs playing a competitive fetch game, Lida would rather chase, herd, and
bark at the dogs who are chasing the ball.
The only thing much better than
a game of fetch to my pack of Entles
is a long, long serious stretch of multiple dog tug. They all love tug. It is a sight to see four or five Entles all tugging
ferociously on one deflated basketball or a Holey Roller ball or a Jolly
Ball or a stick. It sounds as though someone will surely be killed.
frequently asked this question. Having had Labs I understand how dogs
can be drawn to water by their genetic material. No, Entles are
typically not drawn to water. I would say that the vast majority really
have no interest in going much past their pasterns into the water on
their own, if that. However, there are exceptions and then, as with most
things, if the master wants a water dog an Entle will comply and even
learn to love water.
Entlebuchers have never been encouraged and in fact have been
discouraged from becoming “pond dogs”. After years of bathing pond muck
off of my Labs before we could reenter the house I welcomed my Entles
lack of interest in swimming. There were many times on a “before
bedtime” walk in the dark with my Labs that I would hear the ominous
splash and groan at the thought of bathing a dog covered in algae and
muck before I could go to bed.
wade across the shallow river in the summer when we hike, and snuffle
around a little but that is it. Lida will sometimes wallow in the muddy
shallows like a pig in mud, carefully making sure she gets both sides of
her head and muzzle slathered but swim – Never.
learn to swim when the master or mistress swims and leaves them on
shore. Horrors! They have been known to take a flying leap off of the
dock, as scary as it must seem, just to catch up. Entles will go to any
length to be with their people. Some of my pups go boating and swimming
with their families and love it but they were typically encouraged to do
so as pups and it becomes a normal, pleasant part of their lives.
Entlebuchers are not aggressive by nature, however they can be
unafraid if the need arises. They have a 'big dog' attitude packaged in a
small body. Typically, they are for people who are experienced dog owners.
Their energy level requires them to keep busy, so they need ample space
you are looking primarily for a watchdog, an outside guard dog, please
choose another breed. Entlebuchers are great inside alarm
barkers. No one will sneak up on you. There is little doubt that they
would protect you if such action were needed but they are primarily a
companion dog. They will protect you because you are their purpose for
being in life, their companion, their job so to speak not because they
are inherently vicious.
DO ENTLEBUCHERS GET ALONG WITH OTHER
DOGS? WHAT ABOUT CATS?
are not dog aggressive by nature. They get along very well with other
dogs as long as they are socialized with other dogs when young and have
the opportunity to learn “Dog Rules”. Puppy classes are a must at
minimum. They like the companionship of other dogs but can also be quite
happy being the only dog in the house.
They have a
very strong social hierarchy (pack) instinct even though as a breed they
were never raised in large groups or packs. This instinct also plays a
large role in training Entles as they require that there be clear roles
of authority in the families they live with.
Entles catch and kill small vermin in the yard/woods, they are
incredibly fast, they get along fine with cats when raised with them. In
fact, when Oona went to live with her new family in CT they had a large
Persian who had lived with Berners previously. He missed his good Berner
friend who had died and when Oona and I arrived he rushed up to meet the
new tri-colored mountain dog in his living room. What a shock – he took
off for the basement not to be seen again the two days I was there. He
did come out, he and Oona cautiously examined one another. They must
have decided they both belonged there as they gradually became fast
friends. He even groomed her ears.
typically the cat who determines the extent and tenor of the
relationship. I worry more about my pups than the cat when they go to a
home with cats, especially when the cats have their claws.