Monday, February 7, 2011

To the rescue… soon! Nine St Bernard puppies take their first steps in the Swiss Alps


The 'ah' factor: Not perturbed in the least by all the attention from cooing specatators, the exceedingly cute St Bernard puppies groom each other in their enclosure at the museum in Martigny, Switzerland

This litter of St Bernard puppies is causing quite a stir in the town of Martigny, Switzerland.

The adorable nine puppies - four girls and five boys - were born to mother Ivoire days before Christmas, and have just gone on show to the general public at the St Bernard Dog Museum.

The Swiss museum boasts a healthy breeding programme for the popular dogs, best known for their role as the 'guardians of the Alps.'

Although St Bernards are no longer used in rescues, the St Bernard Museum celebrates the past and present of Switzerland's most famous dog breed, who earned their legendary status as lifesavers of travellers lost in the snow.

Only dogs bred at this museum, or at the St Bernard Hospice in the Alps are classified as coming from the Great St Bernard breed.

Nine's a crowd: Mother Ivoire and six of her nine litter of puppies tumble excitedly all over each other

In 2005 the non-profit Barry Foundation, named after the most famous of the rescue dogs, took over the breeding kennel from the hospice at the Great Saint Bernard mountain pass (altitude 8114 ft) to continue the 300-year-old tradition of breeding the famous dogs, which return to their origin on the mountain pass during the summer months.

The St Bernard Museum tells the story of the Great St. Bernard Hospice and Pass, and the exhibition is dedicated to promoting the St. Bernard dog as a universal icon.

Originally used to locate freezing and helpless travelers during snowstorms, the Saint Bernard now uses his intelligence and strength in conformation and obedience competitions, cart pulling and weight pulling.

Although powerful and muscular in build, St Bernards possess a gentle and dignified temperament. Their coats can be long or short and range in colour from deep brown to brown-yellow.

A keeper plays with seven week-old Saint Bernard puppies and their mother Ivoire at an enclosure of the St. Bernard Dog Museum

Feeding time: The animals prepare to be fed by one of the keepers as a crown watch

source :dailymail

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | Grants For Single Moms