The Bergamasco Sheepdog is one weird looking dog! It's fur changes as it grows from a cute fluffy puppy into a scruffy teenage rebel before eventually becoming the dreadlocked cool dude in adulthood!
In terms of personality, the Bergamaso Sheepdog (or Bergamasco Shepherd as he is also known) is a friendly, intelligent, peaceful and well balanced breed.
He loves children - his natural herding and protective naturally comes out when he is around kids and the Bergamasco dog breed has been successfully used as a therapy dog for disabled children.
They have 3 different types of hair which weave together as the dog gets older: a dense oily undercoat made up of fine hairs, a longer type of hair which is harsher and similar to a goat's and a woolly top coat.
A sheepdog with a strong work ethic, the Bergamasco's most unique characteristic is its coat, which contains "dog hair," "goat hair" and "wool" that combine to form black or gray felt-like mats.
The mats grow over the course of the dog's life, reaching the ground at approximately 6 years of age.
The coat can actually smell like a sweater when it is wet. But despite its formidable appearance, the Bergamasco is really a trim, athletic sheepdog.
He can be a little suspicious and dis-trustful of strangers, although he isn't aggressive and he remains very loyal to his owner.
The Bergamasco Sheepdog gets on well with other dogs as long as he doesn't view them as being a threat to him and as for cats, they should be fine too. Even better if you can raise them both together whilst young.
Due to his size, the Bergamasco Shepherd is not suitable for apartment living - he requires a large yard to exercise in.
The Bergamasco has ancient origins. In fact, it comes from that stock of shepherds and cattle dogs that spread from the Orient to the Western world after migrations of the nomad populations and their herds.
The exchange of the dogs took place when the sheep were sold.
The progenitor of the Bergamasco Shepherd found its most suitable cradle in our country in the territory of the Alpine Arc, where sheep herding was very developed, and in the Po Basin of Piedmont and Lombardy, where they went for wintering.