All About Appenzeller Dogs

The Appenzeller dog is also known as the Appenzeller Sennenhund or Appenzeller Mountain Dog.

It’s one of the rarest of four Swiss Mountain Dogs.

What You Should Know

The first time this breed was mentioned is in a book from 1853. Then, the Appenzeller Sennenhund was listed as a breed in 1898. Eight dogs were then introduced at the Winterthur first International Dog Show. Dr. Albert Heim created the Appenzeller Sennenhund Club in 1906 because of his great concern of Swiss Cattledogs.

This breed is known for herding, pulling carts and guarding. They are active and need lots of exercise to be happy.

Male Appenzeller dogs stand about 20 inches at the shoulder, while the female is slightly smaller. This dog will weigh anywhere from 48 to 55 pounds. They have a heavy body build plus a tri-color coat. This coat is shiny and thick with either brown or black as the prominent color and some white or tan markings.

The undercoat is typically gray, black or brown. Their small eyes are always brown but range from light to dark. Most have white markings on the feet, the tip of the tail, chin, and face. Finally, the Appenzeller has small, triangular ears that hang down against the cheeks.

What Sound Do They Make?

Appenzeller dogs are known for their vigilance to guarding loved ones. When they perceive a threat or they want to announce a visitor, they let off a deep sound. This alarm works against its owners because the Appenzeller sees anything different as a threat, even the neighbor leaving for work.

Group Characteristics

Though an Appenzeller is polite when guests arrive, it is always alert for danger. It’s important to socialize the dog to provide a stable and confident temperament that understands when there’s a real threat. Otherwise, this breed becomes pushy and dominant.

The Appenzeller will live nine to 12 years, on average. The female will have one litter per year. Typically, each litter produces four to six puppies.

How Many are There?

This breed isn’t recognized by the AKC or other major American kennel clubs, but it is registered with international clubs and smaller groups in America. It is the rarest from the Sennenhund canine breeds.

If you need a little more cuteness in your day, you’ll get a kick out of this adorable eight-week-old Appenzeller puppy.

Pop Culture

The Appenzeller isn’t a popular dog breed and hasn’t made it to mainstream media. You won’t find this breed as a common choice for kids movies or TV shows.

Interesting Facts

Sennenhund means dairy farmer’s dog, which makes sense since they were purposed with protecting the cows. They are also known for sacrificing their lives to protect those they watch over. It’s believed that they could be descendants from the Romans cattle dogs, but there’s no proof to back that up.

Because this breed is active and energetic, it’s required that they receive plenty of exercise. They don’t make good city dogs but prefer wide-open spaces where they can run. If they don’t receive any physical activity, they become restless and destructive. The Appenzeller even excels at competitions and outdoor sports where herding skills are vital. Furthermore, this dog prefers colder climates and isn’t fond of higher temperatures.

Because of very careful breeding practices, the Appenzeller is remarkably healthy. This breed doesn’t suffer from any major diseases or defects.