Bergamascos are a very old breed from the Italian Alps and are referred to by different names: Bergamasco sheepdog, Bergamasco shepherd, Bergermaschi, Italian Alpine Sheepdog, and Cane da Pastore Bergamasco. Bergamscos have worked for a very long time in the Alps herding and guarding flocks. They are named for the Bergamasche valley in northern Italy.

The adult’s coat is unique and becomes felted or flocked. It is made up of three different hair types.  The coat does not fully develop until 2-3 years of age.  The flocks look similar to dreadlocks. Some just consider the flocks mats.  The flocked coat protects the dogs from the environment and attacks from other animals. Bergamascos have 2 coat colors black or grey & black (merle). The black coat can become shaded to grey. Within the 2 colors there are a lot of variations of grey and black.  Their coat does not require the daily brushing of other long haired breeds. It does need attention in certain areas. The coat can form large matted regions as the flocking is developed. These areas will need to be separated. The dogs can be bathed frequently but should not be brushed when wet. They do not smell anymore than any other breed if groomed and bathed properly.

The Bergamasco has a strong instinct to protect the herd or their family. They need to be socialized at an early age. They are alert, sensitive, loyal and intelligent. Obedience training is recommended and effective because they learn quickly and is helpful with socialization. Bergamascos respond to consistent and firm but gentle training. They are happy to have a job or task to fullfill.  Bergamascos are very loyal and form a close bond to their family.  This breed is better suited to a someone with dog experience especially with a herding breed. Bergamascos make great companions and have been a joy to our family.

Bergamasco puppy info