About Kennel Fanaberner'n
The owner of this kennel name is me; Nina Bless.
I was born and raised in Bodø and am a Northener in body and heart. In 1980 however, I followed love to Bergen.
My family consists of my husband Ottar and my three children; Marte, Even and Tobias. I seem to be on my own though, when it comes to my biggest passion; my dogs.
As a little girl I collected clippings of dogs wishing I had one of my own. First page in my large clippings book was a picture of two beautiful Berners sitting together. To me, this was the most handsome breed of them all.
Years later when I finally bought my own dog, the choice was simple. But in the early eighties getting hold of a Berner proved somewhat a problem. In the end I went to Sweden to buy one. In Bredbyn we found Eva Bergstrøm who had a female puppy we could have, and the decision was made. This is how Came Capella, born 16.17.82 became ours.
Anja, which was her everyday name, was a large, friendly and beautiful dog. She won Price of Honour, CC and CAC at dog shows in both Norway and Sweden. Unfortunately she had a very high HD in one of her hips, which meant we couldn’t use her for breeding. Anja got lymph cancer and died just over four years old. I grieved terribly over her, and decided then that we would never have only one dog ever again.
After three weeks I got a call from Liv Flathus about a female puppy she had. It was ready for delivery and she said I could have a look at her. Liv had contacts in SAS Airlines and had her flown to Bergen. The joy was indescribable when little Mia Maiken came to us. She was a bright, cheeky and gorgeous girl.
Mia was a dog of great personality, and we have so many stories about her. She even took part in a locally filmed movie and received a treat in the mail for it. She also did some courses as an avalanche search dog, and passed the first degree.
Mia was then approved for breeding and I started thinking about having puppies. Her first boyfriend was York v Nesslacker. I needed a kennel name and decided on Fanaberner’n because at the time we lived in Fana, a part of Bergen.
In June 1989 our very first litter was born; five females and two males. This was York’s first litter in Norway. One of the puppies got to stay behind with us; Malin Maruschka.
In other words, the kennel Fanaberner’n was 20 years old in 2009!
Mia had one more litter, with Grizzly Adams Bamse from Sweden. From this came three handsome male puppies, amongst others Fanaberner’ns Captain Chaos.
Mia died at eight from lung cancer.
Malin was a very special dog to us, since we had bred her ourselves and she was from our very first litter. She had good results at the dog shows and even became best female, and BOS twice at the annual speciality dog show at Geilo, and the most winning Berner female in Norway in 1994.
Malin also had two litters; one of five puppies with Tiroheimes Kaifas, and one of seven with Grizzly Adams Bamse.
My eye had caught Macis Kempe Dansk and really wanted to have a last litter with him and Malin. I went to Sweden and to Carin Lingårdh and tried, but with no result. Then, at Malin’s next heat which came during the winter, we had them send fresh semen from Skåne, Sweden. Unfortunately the snowstorm and
chaos in Sweden caused delays and there was not much life left in it when the semen finally arrived. I then decided to buy one of Kempe’s puppies rather than try again with Malin.
Anne-Kari Skardhamar had a litter with her Mira and Kempe, and I was really lucky to get to buy the adorable little Corabarnas Miriam Miranda.
She became a new hope with new genes, and she was a dream of a dog. A gentler, kinder and more beautiful dog you’d have to look long and hard to find. She lived almost 11 and a half years, and each and every day it was a joy to have her as a part of the family. To lose a dog like her was a great tragedy, and we will never have another one like her.
Miriam became best female and BOS at the annual speciality dog show in Geilo in 2001 and the most winning female Berner in Norway that same year.
Miriam had two litters with Glanzberg Galaxy, with three puppies in each litter. Lex, which was his everyday name, and Miriam were a very special couple. They just seemed to belong together, and always had a special relationship with each other. They also met several times in dog shows ending up as BOB and BOS. The last time was at the NKK show in Rogaland in 2005. By this time Miriam was almost eight years old, and Lex was seven.
We kept Fanaberner’ns Mathea Matruschka from Miriam and Lex’s first litter.
Mathea was the most sturdy minded dog you can imagine. She was never worried or scared of anything. Even as an old lady she was never frightened by fireworks or thunder. We attempted to breed with Mathea a few times, and we’re happy that she at least got to have one litter, with Apoletanos Isak. Seven beautiful puppies.
July 2009 Mathea got an infection in her uterus. She had an operation but there was complications and after five days of bleeding the difficult decision of ending her life had to be made. She brought a lot of joy and happiness into our lives and saying farewell to this great and kind dog was very tough.
Miriam had a third litter as well, with Fridahaugens Antoine Huxleyson which ended with a single female puppy; Fanaberner‘ns Mattie Maxima. To keep hold of Miriam’s good genes, I kept the ownership rights for Mattie while having her living with some friends of the family.
As unbelievable as it was, Mattie’s romance with Skoghus Dennis resulted in eleven puppies. Mattie sure didn’t want any of her babies to have to be all alone like she had been. It was an incredible experience to have eleven Berner puppies running around. I don’t expect that to happen too often.
Fanaberner'ns Nuna Nanooka
Fanaberner'ns Nuna Nanooka
Mathea’s daughter Fanaberner’ns Nuna Nanooka is owned by Heidi and Jo Vidar in Fauske, and they really wanted Nuna to have puppies, but were unable to have the litter themselves. This is how the 10th litter came to be a collaborative project between the north and the west. Heidi went to Tromsø with Nuna and arranged a mating between her dog and Yanabos Caspar Casanova, and when the ultra sound confirmed that there were puppies in Nuna’s tummy, she brought her to me in Bergen. Five puppies; two girls and three boys was the result. While this litter lived under our roof, we had four generations living here at the same time, and we made sure to take photos with each of the puppies and their older generations; their mother Nuna four years old, grandmother Mathea almost nine, and last but not least, their great grandmother Miriam eleven years old.
Carla and Catalina
The spring of 2007 I was given the opportunity to buy a female puppy from France. Margunn Berge and Hege Aa Nilsen in Sandnes were buying one, and in the same litter there was another female who originally was meant to go to Brazil. Hege
went all the way to France to collect the two puppies; Catalina and Carla de Roches du Mettey, and bring them home. They are two very lovely females. With Carla you’ve got “happy hour” all day long. She is a very social dog and loves people. The x-rays of Carla were very good and she’s got A’s on all her legs. She’s done well in shows, and I am hoping to have a litter with her in 2010 once I find an appropriate male for her.
And I did, Carla was mated to Jayson v d Weyenberg and I kept Zavannah for myself from this litter. A male Cornelis I co own with Vivi a friend of mine.
Carla 8 months
Carla 8 months
Mother and daughter february 2012
Carla & Zavannah ~ February 2012
Nina and Cornelis
Cornelis, Zavannah, Carla & Baron
My thoughts on being a breeder
The responsibility when breeding dogs is great, and sometimes I think it’s almost too great. It is my responsibility to make sure the puppies are born safely, and my responsibility to make sure they end up with responsible owners with the best for their dog in mind. I wish to breed dogs with good health, good moods, keep the look of the traditional Berner, and have them live long, happy lives. To lose your dog at it’s peak is a terrible thing. Cancer is in my eyes the biggest challenge for the Bernese Mountain Dog breed, and I feel we should take this issue very seriously.
As a breeder I am also focused on keeping as wide a range of genes as possible. Through the years I have gained so much information about the breed, dogs and genes that I find the business of breeding more complicated than ever. I keep becoming more aware of all the different variables out there. My task is nevertheless to make the puppies as healthy as possible. I also focus a great deal on their temperament. I want the Berner to be of a sturdy mind, and not scared of new people. It worries me to see dogs as large as the Berners are, put their tales between their legs in a show ring. Perhaps more breeders need to avoid using dogs with nervous tendencies in breeding.
It some times makes me wonder what kind of Berner the judges want to see. It can seem like they’re looking for a more elegant dog than what I feel the standard of the Berner race should be. I guess it is easy to fall for the well trimmed “floating Berners”. Personally I much prefer the broader built, blunter and well rounded type, and am hoping that the breeding I do will produce more of these.
Ÿ I follow the Norwegian Kennel Club’s ethical directories for breeding of dogs as well as the directories from the Norwegian Bernese Mountain Dog Club.
Ÿ The puppies will not leave my care until they are at least 8 weeks old. They will then have been vaccinated and been treated for worms. It will by then have had a lot of experience with socializing both with people and other dogs, so that it is fit to meet its new life as well prepared as possible.
Ÿ The puppies will all be ID tagged with a micro chip and registered in the Norwegian Kennel Club, and delivered with a pedigree and a health certificate. I use the Buyers Contract made by the Norwegian Bernese Mountain Dog Club. The buyer will have the responsibility to ensure that the puppy is sufficiently insured.
Ÿ The puppy will be presented as a family dog. It is expected to become a part of the family, take part in its activities and have a free and active life. It is of unbelievable importance that the puppy gets to take part in the family life, both outdoors and indoors.
Ÿ The puppy must not be left tied to the porch. Its dog life is so much better when it gets to take part, to live with its family, its herd.
Ÿ As a Breeder it comes without saying that I wish to keep in contact, follow up the dog and be of assistance as long as it is needed. I would love for the new owners to bring the puppy back to visit so that I can say hello to both them and the puppy again.
Baron with Mommy Zavannah and Uncle Cornelis ~ Oct. 2013