Pictures from events of recent years



Text Box: Berner International Working Group Meeting &
Bernese Mountain Dog
Health Seminar





22nd and 23rd September 2011


The Woodside Hotel and Conference Centre

Kenilworth, England


Held in conjunction with

BMDC of GB Championship Show Weekend

24th & 25th September 2011

The Officers and Committee of The Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Great Britain would like to invite all members of the worldwide BMD community and their dogs to join them in celebrating our Ruby Jubilee in 2011 at an extended Bernese week-end in September.


This leaflet mainly gives details of the Thursday and Friday events and how you can attend them. A separate schedule will be issued for the show and all main events can be booked on line (see below).


Full List of The Events

Thursday 22nd

4.00 p.m. - We will host the meeting of the Berner International Working Group

7.00 p.m. - Informal reception to welcome our overseas guests on Thursday evening.


Friday 23rd

9.00 a.m. - We are proud to hold the 8th International Bernese Health Seminar

7.30 p.m. Ruby Jubilee dinner


Saturday 24th

9.00 a.m. BMD Championship show (plus a Limited Obedience show) up to 200 dogs typically. Day opens with Parade of Swiss decorated carts.

6.30 p.m. Bernknees Up – After show party with food and fun


Sunday 25th  Three Events in One

From approx 9.30 a.m. Simply  a great family day out with or without your dogs,  just watch or join in and again opened with a parade of Swiss decorated carts.

lWorking Day – a chance to practice and compete with your Bernese in Working Carting, Agility and Obedience or just watch other people with their Bernese,

l Bernese Supermatch - New for this year only, a knockout match for Bernese. A form of show (approved by the Kennel Club).

l Fun Day - Fancy Dress events, and other Novelty competitions, fun and games such as waggiest tail, biscuit catching etc.

The Area

The whole week-end will be held in Central England near to the city of Coventry. This area is well served by rail and road links and is close to the City of Birmingham airport.


Nearby places of Interest

If you’re thinking of making a holiday visit there are several places you might like to visit.

Stratford Upon Avon which was the home of William Shakespeare with many associated attractions but is also an historic English town with lots of traditional features and buildings, Warwick is another historic town with a famous well preserved Medieval Castle and of course you are not far away from Birmingham, the UK’s second largest city

How to Attend

1] Observer at BIWG Meeting (£4)

Must be booked in advance. Send an email to and you will be placed on the Reservation List. You will be advised several weeks before the event if you have been successful and the charge for liquid refreshments will be made when you attend on the day.


2] Informal Thursday Evening Reception (£24)

3] International Bernese Health Seminar (Members £25 NON Members £35, Lunch £13)

4] Friday Evening Ruby Jubilee Celebration Meal (£30)

6] Saturday Evening Bernknees Up Party (£9)


Places for all the above can be booked and paid for online via the show entry web site (see below) either independently or as part of your show entry with your dog. If you prefer to pay by cheque and the postal system you can download the booking form from our web site



5] Championship BMD Breed Show with Limited Obedience

You can enter online at Scroll down and look for our show plus there is also the option to change language on this site. If it is your first time entering a show via this site you will need to register your dog first but this is easy to do. You can then just choose your class and options, including the above. You do not have to enter a dog to select other option(s) for the week-end.

Alternatively the paper schedule will be sent to all club members and available from the above site and via our club web site. Closing date by post is August 27th and online September 5th.


7] Working Day, Fun Day and Bernese Super Match

You can enter all the Working and Fun events when you arrive in the morning, there will be a small charge per class that you enter. Entry forms to fill in before you attend will be available on our web site.


You can also enter your dog in the exciting new Supermatch in advance as an option when you enter the Championship show (£5). Entries will also be taken at the show on Saturday and Sunday morning if there are spaces left. Places will be limited in this event so to make sure of your entry it is advised to book early.


We hope it will be really easy for everyone to book their places for whichever parts of our week-end they wish to attend. We will be glad to help anyone who is having any difficulty. Whilst the closing date for the seminar is the same as for the show places may be limited so please book as early as possible to avoid disappointment. You can book for the seminar and then revisit the site and enter dogs at a later stage.


If you wish to join our club prior to booking a seminar place, Membership details are available from our web site .


Any Queries

Thursday and Friday arrangements queries to Jackie Green at

Saturday Event Queries to Karen Bird at

Sunday’s Events Queries to Lianne Marsden at

General Queries to Steve Green at




We look forward to welcoming lots of new faces and, hopefully a few of their dogs, to our week-end and we are sure all Bernese lovers will have a great few days whether they join in or just enjoy watching the huge variety of Bernese Mountain Dog activities on show.



N.B. All information in this leaflet is correct at time of going to press and given in good faith. There may be changes to details before the actual events.

The Events In More Detail

Thursday 4.00 p.m.

1] The Berner International Working Group Meeting is a forum for different Breed clubs from around the world to meet and share breed information from their countries. The meeting is open to representatives of the member clubs but, subject to available space, observers are welcome to witness the meeting and hear the news from other countries directly.

BIWG delegates will be contacted separately but if you are a new breed club (wishing to attend for the first time) please notify us at

As we do not know attendance figures at this stage, and therefore how much space for observers, anyone interested in attending just to listen and watch the meeting, will be placed on a reservation list and then notified as space allows (first come first served). This space will be very limited so please book early to give yourself a chance.

There will be small (on the day) charge for observers only to cover refreshments (£4 per person).

Please book before June 30th to guarantee consideration.


2] Following the meeting there will be an Informal Evening Reception which all are welcome to attend.  This will be barbeque style food at a cost of £24 per head.


Friday 9.00 a.m.

3] International Bernese Health Seminar. This is a seminar bringing together speakers from the UK and overseas on issues relevant to Bernese Health. The seminar fee is fantastic value for such an event and includes a booklet plus liquid refreshments through the day but lunch is an optional extra.


The speakers are

u Dr Jane Dobson     Latest developments in Cancer Treatments

For many years the Head of Veterinary Oncology at Cambridge University Veterinary School, Jane is in a great position to update us on the cutting edge of cancer treatments for our dogs.


u Dr Benoit Hedan     Genetic Progress in the fight against Histiocytic saroma (Malignant Histiocytosis)

Dr Hedan is veterinarian at University of Rennes ( France) in Catherine Andre's lab for Dog genetic research. Since his thesis, he has worked on deciphering genetic basis of histiocytic disorders in dog with research of predisposing genes. This work was completed by a post doctoratal position in Matthew Breen 's laboratory (NCSU, Raleigh, USA)  looking for recurrent chromosomal aberrations in tumor cells leading to histiocytic sarcoma . He will present the latest results from these researches and the potential applications for the dogs and breeders.


u Dr Lorna Kennedy     Is the Major Histiocompatability gene a genetic risk marker for Malignant Histiocytosis in BMD?

Dr Kennedy is a Senior Scientist at the University of Manchester Centre for Integrated Genomic Medical Research. There is some evidence that the human equivalent of malignant histiocytosis is associated with certain variants of Major Histocompatibility Complex (MHC) genes. These genes are involved in the control of the immune response. We are investigating the MHC in healthy and affected Bernese Mountain dogs, to ascertain whether there is also an association in dogs. She has been looking to set up a collaboration with our breed so is very keen to join in our seminar.

u Professor Jeff Sampson      Latest KC initiatives to produce healthier dogs

Jeff is connected to the British Kennel Club as their geneticist and heavily involved in most of their current initiatives and responses to pressures of the last few years. The problems and issues in the UK world of pedigree dogs are mirrored in most countries. The way our Kennel Club is dealing with them in the UK will be an interesting comparison to other countries.

u   Samantha Goldberg     Steroid Responsive Meningitis (SRM)

Sam is a British companion animal vet who is also a dog breeder and judges to CC level in Beagles. She is the KC Health Coordinator for the UK Beagle Clubs but also very interested in all pedigree dog health issues. She has taken a special interest in SRM which occurs in Beagles has also been observed in other breeds including the Bernese Mountain Dog. Fortunately it appears not to be too widespread in BMD but is something we all need to be aware of and watchful for. The Animal Health Trust has been collecting DNA samples from Beagles affected by SRM and is conducting research to see if there is a genetic basis for the disease. Other breeds have also started collecting samples pending the results from the beagles.


u Dr Urs Geissbühler     Swiss study into Morbidity in the Bernese Mountain Dog

Dr Geissbuhler is Chairman of the Health committee of the Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Switzerland and will be presenting this study undertaken by Menga Rossetti who recently completed her Doctorate analysing this study of Bernese Health in the breed’s homeland of Switzerland. The study was carried out over many years and followed a large sample of dogs born in 2001 and 2002 and gives a uniquely accurate view of issues such as causes of death.


u  Professor Berndt Klinghorn     Swedish Pet Insurance Survey of Bernese Health

Berndt is a retired professor of veterinary virology, Chairman of the Breeding Committee of the Swedish Club of Swiss Mountain Dogs, consultant to the Swedish Kennel Club, and the President of two research foundations promoting research on dogs and cats. The study he will be presenting gives a good insight into our breed’s problems.


u Pat Long     Bernergarde and why you should support it.

Pat is massively respected for her work towards Bernese Health in America and has a long and well known association with Berner Garde in America and gives regular updates at our International seminars. Berner Garde is a well established fantastic tool for our world wide to use and many countries are now using it to record BMD details.


u Steve Green     Berner International Working Group

A very brief update from the President of the BIWG


Depending available time there will be a question and answer/discussion session to end the day.


Also included is a seminar booklet in which there will be the usual synopses of the speaker’s presentations and a list of delegates (as usual) but also a summary from other projects around the world involving, or relevant to, Bernese Mountain Dogs. It is also hoped to include summaries of the previous day’s presentations to the BIWG from each countries breed representatives. This booklet will therefore be much more than just a guide to the seminar but a summary of BMD health worldwide.


The cost of the seminar, accompanying booklet and including liquid refreshments all day is stunning value at just £25 per person (club members) and £35 (non members).

If you wish to include a finger buffet lunch the cost is an extra £13 per person.


Please note you will not be able to consume your own food inside the premises.





4] Friday Evening 7.30 p.m. Ruby Jubilee Celebration Meal

A more formal 4 course meal to commemorate 40 years of the club.  

Cost £30 per person



 5] Saturday 9.00 p.m. Championship BMD Breed Show with Limited Obedience

This is our annual club show and usually attracts an entry second only to Crufts in the UK of up to 200 dogs. Our judges this year are Breed Specialist Jan Herngren from Sweden judging Dogs and Sandra Gatward judging Bitches. All UK BMDs or those registered in any FCI country are eligible to enter but the show is run to UK Kennel Club rules. Details of how to bring your dog into Britain can be found via the club’s website. Show entry details will be in the schedule and available online. (see below). The Show is opened by a parade of Bernese carters in Swiss costume.

Our show system is very different to most countries but this usually makes it interesting to visitors who are used to the FCI structure. For example all the show judging will take place in one ring so it is easy to see all the dogs


The Obedience Show, alongside the Championship show, is also fully licensed by the Kennel Club and open to all BMDs and again details can be found via the web site or in the schedule.


6] Saturday 6.30 p.m. Bernknees Up Party

This is the annual after show chance to relax and have a laugh. There is an excellent buffet provided as well as music , dancing and entertainment. Held in the Kennel Club building the price includes an excellent buffet but you need to bring your own alcoholic drinks.  (Time may be changed via announcement at the show)                                                                                   Cost £9 per person.


7] Sunday approx 9.30 a.m. Working Day, Fun Day and Bernese Super Match

Working Day - This is a chance to take part in working events with your Bernese or sit and watch others work with their dogs. There will be friendly competitions for Working Carts, Agility, Obedience as well as tuition if you wish to try out Carting or Agility for the first time. If you wish to try your dog in a cart, for example, this will be a chance for you to borrow a cart and receive some training. At the end of the day there is an overall Top Working dog award who can gain points in all disciplines. There will also be dog training and advice sessions with the chance to ask a Professional Dog Trainer about your dog. Other opportunities include Character Assessment and KC Good Citizen testing.

Fun Day – The programme is not yet completed but is basically a chance to have some fun with your Bernese, there will be decorated carts in Swiss and other styles, games such as biscuit catching or waggiest tail as well as a Puppy parade and the ever popular Veteran and Rescue Parades where you get the chance to hear some moving stories of our Bernese friends.

Bernese Super Match – Held with Kennel Club permission this is a friendly show based knock out competition for this Special year only. Open to all dogs including Champions and overseas dogs with (ATC number).  Exactly how it is scheduled into the day depends upon the size of entry but the final rounds will be in the main ring and there are excellent prizes and stunning rosettes on offer. Match Entry fee is just £5 per dog


We hope you agree there are lots of fascinating things to see and do. In all this is a Bernese family day out with something for every Bernese Mountain Dog person whatever their interest in the breed. You can join in with your dog or just enjoy watching other people working their dog or just having fun.


The Venues

The Thursday and Friday events will all be at The Woodside Hotel and Conference Centre, on the outskirts of the town of Kenilworth. This fantastic venue is set within 32 acres (13 hectares) of secure grounds so is perfect for people staying with dogs. Access to the whole site and car park is via a security gate so dogs that have to be left in cars for example should be as secure as they are anywhere. The club has reserved a number of rooms for people attending the seminar and negotiated a discounted room rate for delegates as follows.


Room Rates (including VAT)

1 Night                    £70.00 Single                       £80.00 Double

2 Nights                 £130.00 Single                     £140.00 Double

3 Nights                 £180.00 Single                     £190.00 Double

4 Nights                 £220.00 Single                    £230.00 Double

All include breakfast.

Dogs are an extra £20 total (per stay not per night)


To find out more or book your accommodation

Tel: 0845 504 9550 (From UK only)                                         From overseas call 44 1926 852217 

Woodside, Glasshouse Lane, Kenilworth, Warwickshire. CV8 2AL 

N.B. To claim your seminar discounted room rate please quote the promotional code 65933 and we recommend booking early to ensure your place in the hotel and at the seminar.


To avoid confusion please note that all prices in this leaflet are given in British Pounds.


The venue for the Saturday, Saturday evening and Sunday Events is The Kennel Club Building, Stoneleigh Park and Showground. This venue is 10 minutes drive away from the seminar hotel and we plan to arrange some transport between the two locations to assist our overseas visitors without transport. It is a large purpose built show venue with inside and outside rings (we hope to be outside if possible).



The Kennel Club building is sited within Stoneleigh Park which is a very large exhibition complex which includes a camp site for camping and caravans. If you wish to stay on this campsite you should contact them on the following details

Stoneleigh Park Campsite, Stoneleigh Park, Nr Coventry, CV8 2LZ



We have arranged for all those Bernese campers who want to be together in one area of the site to be located on the side of the camp site closest to the showground and the KC building.  When booking please state that you are attending the Bernese weekend event.


Campsite Prices

Caravans and motor homes - £15 per night or £18 with electric hook up

Tents - £8 per night or £10 with electric hook up



TEL 44 /0 2476 690123

Please note these camping prices are as at February 2011 but may be subject to change.