Appenzeller Sennenhund: Training and Attitude

The Appenzell Mountain Dog is very affectionate and likes to bond with children and women. He can then express his joy by waving wildly, and his lively, often downright quicksilver temperament comes into its own.


Thanks to his good powers of observation and his enormous adaptability, he gets along with his owner without big words. He closely observes his facial expressions and gestures and is usually able to conclude whether he likes his behavior or not.

Penalties are rarely necessary. Without being overly sensitive, he doesn’t take hardness very well. If you treat the Appenzeller roughly and unlovingly and exclude him from the family circle, he will become shy and possibly even bite. One shouldn’t be surprised if even friendly intentioned approaches are answered with a growl.

The quality of the Appenzell Mountain Dogs when working with herds of cattle deserves special mention even today.

If you entrust a herd to these dogs, they will quickly get to know all the cows in the association, even if it is a larger herd. The Appenzeller is quite capable of rounding up to 200 scattered cows all by himself. He is fearless and agile at the same time, does not give up on any cow, no matter how far away, and does not rest until the last one is back in its place in the herd.

Nature of the Appenzeller

The Appenzell people have always been very intelligent and very trainable, while physically almost unbeatable with their fearlessness, which goes hand in hand with unbelievable agility and agility. Due to their high willingness to learn, their patience, and their strong relationship with people, these dogs are also often trained as guide dogs for the blind and are extremely reliable there.

Regarding the history of goal-oriented breeding, towards the end of the 19th century, the breeders of this breed began to organize themselves. In 1898 a detailed description of the breed was presented. It was not until 8 years later that an association was founded with the aim of promoting Appenzeller breeding.

Nevertheless, one cannot say that the Appenzell people have multiplied and spread all over the country – on the contrary. Unfortunately, their population is so small that they are listed as an endangered breed. In 1997, the Swiss ProSpedieRara Foundation, whose goal is to protect acutely endangered farm animal breeds, but also endangered plants from extinction, committed itself to preserve the Appenzeller Sennenhunde.


The Appenzeller Sennenhund has a very attractive appearance. He is very well proportioned, his height at the withers is around 52 cm – 56 cm for males, bitches are slightly smaller with a height at the withers of 50 cm – 54 cm. No specific value was set for the weight because the variations in this area are too different. This breed has a stock hair coat with a black base color. The dogs have white and brown markings that are symmetrically arranged.

In addition to black as the basic color, Havana brown can also occur as a basic tone. A typical feature of the Appenzellerhund is its curled tail, which is often referred to locally as the “post squirrel”.


The Appenzeller is very well suited as a family dog because he is absolutely obedient to his family and his master while being loyal and devoted. He is also ideal for families with children because he likes children very much and is patient when dealing with them, this also applies to dealing with other dogs.

All in all, the Appenzeller is a bright, happy, and carefree family member. However, it is important to remember that this breed likes to be kept busy and needs plenty of exercise on a regular basis. For a small city apartment, this breed is absolutely not suitable. A rural attitude is optimal for this dog, whereby a farm with a lot of exercise area is of course the ideal case.

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