Family: Alder Yarrow, Ruth and Sparrow Lieu
Age: She will be 3 years old in April
Breed: Bernese Mountain Dog
Adoption story: For the longest time we didn’t think our lives were compatible with a dog because of travel and work, but like so many people, that changed in the pandemic. We fenced our yard and got on a waiting list for a breeder, and were expecting to choose a puppy in November, but we got a call in August telling us that a dog from the April litter had been returned to the breeder because its parents were recalled to their home country of Germany, and during the pandemic, they couldn’t repatriate a dog. So we became Riley’s parents at 4 months of age instead of 2 months. We missed the little fuzzball stage, but she came house trained, and even knew how to ring a bell to tell us when she needed to go outside.
Likes: She likes people more than dogs, especially anyone willing to let her tunnel through their legs so she can get her butt scratched. She also has a weakness for bananas and bread. Even though she doesn’t get to see it that often, her genetic love of snow is surprisingly strong. We’ve never seen her happier than when she is bounding through deep drifts or burying herself in a snowbank.
Dislikes: Despite being a huge 107-pound fluff ball, she’s quite timid and scared of any barking dog, no matter how small. She also happens to not like water very much, and will go to great lengths to avoid getting wet, and acts like a small child at the beach running away from the waves.
Interesting facts: For the first year of her life with us, Riley never barked once. We weren’t sure she knew how. Then one day she decided that we needed protection from the UPS delivery coming up our front steps, and we couldn’t believe what a huge scary dog she sounded like.
Last summer I saw a BMD cross with a dachshund!