Walnut Valley FAQ

Here are some frequently asked questions and helpful information about us and our Bernedoodles. Click on a question to learn more.

Mini Bernedoodles

Questions About Bernedoodles

Are Bernedoodles Hypoallergenic?

Yes, Bernedoodles are considered a hypoallergenic breed. However, there is no such thing as a fully hypoallergenic dog, as people can also be allergic to dog saliva or urine, etc. For those with mild to medium pet allergies, doodles make a wonderful addition to the family, as they are usually low shed to no shed.  For a person with severe allergies we want to ensure that the puppy you take home has as curly a coat as possible. An F1B is usually recommended for people with more severe allergy problems. If you have concerns, we suggest that you get further allergy testing done as well as take some time to interact with doodles and their humans in your area before purchasing a puppy.

What Are the Bernedoodle Coat Types?

Bernedoodle coats can vary in thickness, consistency, and color. Keep in mind that Bernedoodles come from both the Poodle and the Bernese Mountain Dog. In an F1 (first generation) breeding, you might get a puppy with a coat that looks more similar to a Poodle and get another puppy with a coat very close like a Bernese. (Sometimes even within the same litter) Bernedoodle coats are generally put into three main categories - Curly, Wavy, and Straight.
Please note when looking at the examples below that the appearance of our Bernedoodles is greatly affected by whether they are groomed and how short the coats are if groomed. Be sure to consider this when looking at the pictures.

Examples of a Curly Coat

Coat types

Curly coat – The curly coat will shed the least and is the most hypoallergenic of the three types. The curls on this coat are usually tight with a soft texture much like what you would see on a Poodle. Curly coats may still shed, but they shed the hair upon themselves rather than on your floor. Unfortunately, this shedding upon themselves is what makes it necessary for them to be brushed daily and trimmed frequently. The curly coated Bernedoodle is usually the most suitable for owners who have an allergy to dog dander. If you don’t want to deal with shedding, keep in mind that the curlier the coat, the less it’s going to shed.

Examples of a Wavy Coat

Coat types
Wavy coat – The wavy coat, which is low-to non-shedding, is probably the coat most seen on Bernedoodles. This coat is very free-flowing and often has a lightly kinked or wavy appearance. Most people with allergies to dog dander (i.e., experience sneezing, watery eyes) are fine with a wavy coated dog. Note, if you are unsure if this coat type will be fine for you, we suggest that you get further allergy testing done as well as take some time to interact with doodles and their humans in your area before purchasing a puppy.

Examples of a Straight Coat

Coat types
Straight coat – The straight coats usually shed the most and are the least hypoallergenic of the three coat types. Even though this coat is called “straight” or flat, it may actually have a slight wave to it. The length of the dog’s straight hair depends mostly on the length of the parent’s hair. Straight-coated Bernedoodles are not very common; you’ll mostly find them with wavy or curly coats.

Groomed Versus Ungroomed

The appearance of our Bernedoodles is greatly affected by whether they are groomed and how short the coats are if groomed. Be sure to consider this when looking at any pictures. Here is an example of the same dog with the pictures taken only several hours from each other. How you groom your dog is a big part of what gives them the look they have.

Coat types

What is the Difference Between an F1, F2, and F1B?

  • F1 refers to the cross between two purebred dogs- A Bernese Mountain Dog crossed to a Poodle. This generation cross gives a 50/50 mix, genetically they will have a combination of attributes between the two parents. Coats in F1s can vary in terms of the percentage of hair shedding. Some will be nearly completely non-shedding and others will have a percentage of hair that still sheds. There can be variation within this generation in terms of coat but most will be a loose wavy coat through to a curly wave. The reason someone would choose this generation is that they have a more even combination of the genetics and personality of the parent breeds- In Bernedoodles the F1s typically have the most Bernese colors, blockiness and personality.

  • F1B’s are a Bernedoodle crossed to a Poodle- with 75% poodle, their coats are usually fairly consistently, low to non-shedding. Typically, half of the litter will be have a curly coat and half will have a looser wavy coat. They are more suited to a family that may have mild allergies or that feel strongly about shedding in their dog. Their build will usually be a little less blocky and their colors can vary more than the F1’s.

  • F2 or Multi-Generational refer to two Bernedoodle parents that are bred together to achieve a multi-generational cross. The attributes can vary, but the idea behind multi-gen breeding is to reach a consistent pairing between desirable attributes from both parents. All purebred dogs today come from many generations of breeding multi-gen crosses to achieve a consistent breed standard. There can be variation in the mix of genes that each multi-gen puppy gets, but with many generations, a predictable set of traits and looks will emerge.

What Are the Grooming Requirements For Bernedoodles?

Bernedoodles are like poodles in that they have hair, not fur. This means that they will require regular brushing to keep them free from matting. Because the hair of bernedoodles are prone to matting, you must brush their hair 2 to 3 times a week with a specialized dog brush. From the time they are puppies, it is a good idea to brush your dogs hair every day to get them used to regular grooming. Bernedoodles do well being clipped every 8-12 weeks. This is dependent on your preferences and your dog's activities. An active outdoor doodle will enjoy a shorter cut more frequently. Beginning the grooming process as soon as you bring your puppy home will go a long way to ensuring that grooming becomes a wonderful bonding experience between you and your pet!
The curlier the coat the more professional grooming they will need. Without grooming, the dog runs the risk of getting a matted coat and may need to be shaved to prevent further issues. A wavy or straight coat can be easily groomed by brushing when you bathe your dog (bi-weekly, monthly, etc).

What is the Size of Your Bernedoodles?

We have Standard, Miniature, and Tiny Bernedoodles.

Our Bernedoodles come in three breed sizes - Standard, Miniature, and Tiny. A cross between the Bernese Mountain Dog and the Standard Poodle will create a F1 Standard Bernedoodle. Our F1 Standard Bernedoodles will usually stand 23-29 inches at the shoulder and weigh 70-100 or more pounds. Most standard Bernedoodles are in the 70-90 pound range. Females are usually smaller than males.
An F1 Miniature Bernedoodle is a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Miniature Poodle. Our F1 Mini Bernedoodles usually stand between 17 and 22 inches tall and weigh anywhere from 25 to 65 pounds with most of them weighing 35-45 lbs. Again females tend to be smaller than males.
An F1B Mini Bernedoodle is a cross between an F1 Standard Bernedoodle and a Miniature Poodle. They are sized similar to our F1 Minis. Because these puppies are 75% poodle they tend to be more hypoallergenic and usually shed less than the F1 puppies.
An F1B Tiny Bernedoodle is the result of breeding an F1 Mini Bernedoodle to a Miniature Poodle. F1B Tiny Bernedoodles usually stand between 12 and 17 inches tall and weigh between 15 and 25 pounds. Again, these puppies tend to be more hypoallergenic and usually less shedding than the F1 Bernedoodles.

Why is the Puppies Nose Pink?

All Bernedoodles are born with pink noses. As the puppies grow older, their black pigmentation sets in and the nose fully fills to a nice black nose that we all know and love. Most puppies have a full black nose by the time they are 8 weeks old. Some puppies will take longer and may not have a full black nose until they're 2-4 months of age.
Occasionally there is a puppy that never gets a fully black nose.

Coat types

Questions About Walnut Valley

What is The Current Wait Time For a Puppy?

Our general goal is to produce approximately 8-10 litters of F1 Mini Bernedoodles, 2-3 litters of F1b Mini & Micro Bernedoodles, and 2-3 litters of Standard Bernedoodles on an annual basis.
At this point the approximate wait time for each breed is,

  • F1 Mini Bernedoodle = 0-6 months
  • F1 Standard Bernedoodle = 3-6 months
  • F1B Mini & Micro Bernedoodles = 3-12 months
These numbers are approximate and can vary significantly based on the many variables in our puppy life. We only breed our females if they are healthy and ready for pregnancy. Even then, there is no guarantee that they will have puppies, or how many they have if they do get pregnant. See more on our Reservation Page.

Occasionally we have puppies become available to the public after we are thru with our waitlist selection process. Check our Available Bernedoodle page to see if we have any currently available.

Is Your Waitlist Up-To-Date?

Yes! We keep the website updated almost daily. Occasionally it may be outdated a day or two over the weekend. Our waitlist is generally updated daily!

How Does the Puppy Selection Work?

When you place a deposit for a future litter your name is placed on the list on a "first come, first pick" basis. When puppies come, we update the website within a few days with details of the litter. We take pictures of the puppies when they are several days old, at 3 weeks old, and then again when they're 5 weeks old. Once the puppies are 5 weeks old we will take updated pictures and videos of each puppy and then start on top of the Reservation List and let people pick out their puppies. We can help you with your decision by taking videos and/or via a FaceTime call. (If you would like to see the litter before making a decision, you will have to visit the puppies when they're between 4 and 5 weeks old) Once it's your turn to pick, you can choose an available puppy OR decide to skip your turn for that litter and wait for a subsequent litter, at which time you would likely have a higher pick.
We will be contacting you (usually via text) when your turn is getting close and if you choose to pass we will then move onto the next person(s). It is imperative that you respond within 4 hours after being notified of an available puppy of your interest. Otherwise, we will have to keep moving down our list. We ask that you keep an eye on our website as well as our Facebook and Instagram pages for current and upcoming litters. If you don't respond to our text and/or email notification of currently available puppies then we assume you will want to wait. In such a case we will hold your spot on the Reservation List and continue moving down the list to others waiting on their turn.

What are the AVAILABLE spots on the waitlist?

You may notice some spots on the waitlist say AVAILABLE. This is because someone dropped off the list and that spot is now available to anyone on or off the list. Note: If someone drops off the list and chooses to have their deposit refunded, we will mark that spot on the list as available. We will make a note of it in our News For Waitlist Families section on our waitlist page. Anyone can then claim that spot if they want to move up. When jumping to the available spot, there will be a $50 charge for every spot you move up on the waitlist. For example: If you are at #40 on the list and spot #20 becomes available, you can move up for $1,000 (20 spots up the list at $50 each). Any spot on the list will be available first come, first serve. Paying to move up on the list is an additional fee and will not be counted towards the cost of your puppy. This fee is NON-REFUNDABLE. If you are not on the list and would like to claim an available spot, you must first join the list at the end and then contact us about moving up.

Is My Deposit Refundable?

Deposits are 50% Refundable and can be refunded for any reason. There is no way that you can know for sure that we will have a puppy for you in the future, and we understand that. We fully respect your decision if you find a puppy elsewhere or change your mind for any other reason. In such a case we would refund 50% of your deposit. ($250.00 on a $500.00 deposit) After you pick a puppy the deposit becomes completely non-refundable and goes towards the final price of the puppy. Reservations are honored in order of deposits placed.

Do You Provide a Health Guarantee and Warranty?

Guarantee and Health Warranty: We want every puppy to go home happy and healthy. But as it is with us humans, things can go wrong in the puppy world. To ensure that all is well in its new environment, we ask that if possible you get your puppy checked by a vet within 72 hours of going home. Any normal costs incurred are the responsibility of the buyer. If there would happen to be any problems, we would need a copy of the veterinarian's invoice to reimburse you for the cost of treatment. (That amount not exceeding the cost of the dog.)
We also offer a 2-year Genetic Health Guarantee on our puppies. There are many things that can affect the long-term health of a dog including genetics. While genetic health is an issue of concern, an equal or greater factor is diet and exercise. In this sense, we are taking a risk by giving a 2-year guarantee because we do not know how well the puppies will be taken care of. We choose to trust that they will be received into good homes.

Do You Remove Dew Claws?

Yes, all puppies have their dew claws removed at 3-5 days of age. They will be groomed and active dogs throughout their lives, and we feel that this gives them the best chance of not having the dew claw snagged while being groomed or out playing.

I Live Out of State, How Can I Pick Up My Puppy?

Local pickup and ground shipping

Local pickup is preferred, but we do sell a lot of puppies that need to be transported. If you can't pick up locally, we have several ground shipping options available. We can (in most situations) deliver directly to your home for $1.50 per mile. We would be happy to discuss the options with you and help you decide what option is the best for you. Any puppies picked up in Illinois are subject to 6.25% state sales tax. Puppies that are flown or are picked up/delivered outside of Illinois are not taxed.
Flying Puppies
Our Flight nanny personally carries your puppy from the Indianapolis, IN airport to the closest major airport near you. The price is $375 (this includes the $125 pet fee) plus the price of the airline ticket and the nanny carries the puppy with her in a breathable, soft travel carrier in cabin with her, the whole time. The puppy has treats, a chance to go the bathroom along the way and lots of love and snuggles from her as they travel.
Airport Pickup
If you want to fly the puppy yourself we can meet you at the Indianapolis Airport for $175 within business hours. You will then be responsible to purchase your own airline tickets.

How do I make my FINAL PAYMENT?

Final payments (including any shipping costs) are due 10 days before the puppies are ready to go home at eight weeks (Unless paying cash at pickup/delivery).  The puppy is considered yours once the deposit and final payment is received. The final payments can be made via Check, Cash, Bank Transfer, or PayPal/Credit Card. Balance payments that are paid with PayPal or Credit Card will be subject to a 3% processing fee. (We personally pay the fee on all initial deposits made with Credit Card or PayPal.)

Do The Puppies Come With Spay And Neuter Contracts?

Yes! All of our puppies go home with a spay/neuter contract! If you wish to adopt a puppy to use for breeding purposes please contact us before joining the waitlist to talk about full registration and additional cost of adopting a puppy without a spay/neuter contract!
We allow puppies to be adopted for breeding purposes (without a spay/neuter contract) to qualifying breeders at an additional charge. Breeding rights are available for our F1 Mini Bernedoodles as well as our F1B Mini & Tiny Bernedoodles. Breeding rights are NOT available for our F1 Standard Bernedoodles!

What Are The Prices of Your Puppies?

Pricing for Bernedoodles:
Bernedoodles come in a variety of colors and therefore have different prices.

Our F1 Mini Bernedoodles have a set price not based on color.

  • $4450.00 - F1 Mini Bernedoodles

Our F1 Standard and F1B Mini & Tiny Bernedoodles prices vary based on the colors listed below.

  • $3950.00 - Tri-colored
  • $3950.00 - Blue Merle
  • $3750.00 - Tri-colored Parti
  • $3750.00 - Blue Merle Parti
  • $3450.00 - Black-and-white

There is a $1500 additional charge for breeding rights for your puppy!

*In the case of a price change, we will honor the price specified at the time of your deposit.*

Where Are You Located?

We are located at Flat Rock in southern Illinois, 4 hours south of Chicago and 2.5 hours east of St Louis, Missouri.
We are about 2 hours from the Indianapolis International Airport.

General Questions

How to Avoid Getting Scammed When Adopting a Puppy!

I talk with a lot of people who either got scammed or almost got scammed and are very nervous because they don't know how to avoid it happening again. Here are a few tips on how to steer clear of shady websites and scammers who are only out to get your money. I have personally done a bunch of research on scam websites and can now spot one easily without ever talking to the people who are running it.

• Look for Google reviews
Google reviews are hard to fake and most scam websites do not have any. If they don't have any google reviews or only have negative reviews, be cautious. Google ranking and reviews take time to build up and a lot of these scammers are constantly building new websites to stay ahead of the game.

• The Offer Sounds Too Good to Be True
If it sounds too great, it probably is. Excellent breeders will not sell their Bernedoodle puppies for rock bottom prices. It is not cheap to raise a litter. Vet bills, health testing, food and supplements, time and effort go into a litter. So, if the price seems too good, it probably is not legit. If you have been checking the price of Bernedoodle puppies that you are interested in buying and a puppy comes up that is way below the going price, there is a reason for it. Most scam websites have very low prices to attract you into a deal faster.

• Free or nearly free shipping
Many scammers will offer shipping at a ridiculously low price with their choice of Pet Delivery Agency. Scammers entice you to purchase knowing that shipping is not going to be an added expense however, if you fall for the scam, the cost of shipping continues to grow almost daily. Scammers will normally insist on shipping the puppy to you. They will make up 101 excuses for why you cannot pick up the puppy in person. This is because they will charge you much more for the shipping than you have paid for the puppy.
If you are adamant that you will pick up the puppy in person the scammer will eventually relent and arrange an appointment to meet. (They will then send you a random location that is within a few hours of you)
Scammers do this as there is a possibility that you will relent and pay for shipping. It does not cost them anything if you insist on driving cross-country to an address that has no connection with the scam.

• Do a reverse image search on google
If you think a website may be a scam, do a reverse image search with the pictures of their puppies. This will search the internet for the image and will pull it up on other websites if the scammers got their pictures from a real breeder. A reverse image search will often reveal a scam because most scammers get their pictures off of other peoples websites.
This is a handy tool and has revealed many scammers and saved folks a lot of money. You can do a reverse search here or use google.

• Get on the phone
Most scammers (not all) don't have a phone number on their website and only communicate via email. If you can't talk with the breeder on the phone, go somewhere else. They prefer not to speak to you as this may arouse your suspicions.
Scammers are also happy to correspond by email. Read the email carefully. The wording in the email should be proper English. If you are in the US, scan the wording and determine if it is a native speaking US citizen. The same applies to the UK, New Zealand, Australia or other English-speaking countries. Puppy scams often originate abroad.
If it is a scammer the first replies to your questions will be well written however this a script that they are coping and pasting. When you continue to ask questions about the puppy, the scammers answers deteriorate and become much shorter. If the responses you receive seem odd, or don't conform to the local vernacular or how you would expect a native to speak or respond to your questions, chances are you are not corresponding with a local person. While not a definite sign, that should at least send up a red flag. Odd use of grammar is a telltale sign that you are not dealing with a native speaker.

• Ask a lot of questions
In the event that you can get on the phone with them, ask a lot of questions! Don't worry about being nosy, you have the right to know everything about your future pet. Ask to FaceTime with them and the puppy. If they refuse it's probably because they don't have the puppy.
Ask for their personal names and do a Google search of their name with the words "dog breeder". If they have any sort of registration you should get a lot of good google results. If there are no clear google results, the name is probably fake.

• Puppies from various litters?
On most scam websites there are normally beautiful photos of small puppies all appearing to be between 6 weeks and 12 weeks. Study the photographs well. If the photos look professional then they should all share the same background as they would have been taken at the same time. If they are not professionally taken then they should all be of the same quality and appear to be from the same location.
A legit breeder will almost always have a litter for sale with some pictures of all the puppies together as well as their parents, while scammers will often have a variety of puppies for sale. If you see various puppies that all look like they're all from different litters, be careful.
Scam websites also usually do not have the puppies date of birth. Instead it will say "eight weeks" or something similar. This is so that a person can come onto the website three weeks from now and the puppy is still eight weeks old. They do not put down the date of birth because then they would constantly have to be changing it to make so the puppy doesn't get older.

• Don't except unusual payment methods
Most scammers will want to get cash thru unusual payment methods. Stick with PayPal or something you are familiar with and make sure you have fraud protection.

• Facebook Scams
There has recently been an increase in Facebook scammers trying to pose as legit dog breeders. Scammers are constantly having to make new profiles to stay ahead so check out their profile. If it has only recently been created be cautious. They will often have friends but any posts they've made have little or no likes and comments. Common wording for scam Facebook pages are titles like "Bernedoodle puppies for rehoming, Bernedoodle puppies for adoption, or Bernedoodle puppies available for sale"
If you are messaging someone on Facebook and are unsure if they are legit please text me at 618-421-5246. I have dealt with many scammers and can easily see if the person is legit.

• You’ve Been Scammed, Now What?
There is no guarantee that you will recover your losses, but there are a few things you still should do. The more places you report it, the better chance you have to shut down their website.
It truly feels horrible when you discover you have been a victim of puppy scams. The emotional loss of knowing the puppy you already started to love will never be yours. Losing money, not matter what your financial situation is difficult to take. Please take some time to recover your loss before you begin to look again. File reports with as many agencies that you can find. This helps put these puppy scammers out of business.
Lastly, and this is truly the hardest, don’t fall emotionally in love with a beautiful puppy pictures until you’ve done your due diligence.

If you have tips to add to this page or aren't sure if the person you are dealing with is a scam, feel free to call or text Tina at 618-421-5246.

What Should I Feed My Puppy?

Puppy Food

Choosing the right food to feed your new puppy is crucial to their overall health and well-being and something that should be done with careful thought and consideration. As your puppy’s breeder, our commitment to the health and happiness of your newest family member doesn’t end when you take your puppy home! Our aim is to provide the best advice when it comes to caring for your new pet, especially nutrition!

This is one of the many reasons why we choose to feed our dogs and proudly recommend TLC Whole Life Dog Food. Delivering the ultimate balance of quality meats, animal fats, vitamins and minerals, TLC Whole Life Dog Food provides everything your puppy needs to develop into a strong, healthy and energetic dog.

Will The Puppy Have Vaccinations And Deworming Before Coming Home?

Yes! Your puppy will be fully up-to-date on all shots and vaccinations! The puppies are typically de-wormed 3 times before they go home (e.g. at 3, 4, 7 weeks) and have their first set of vaccinations at 4 and 6 weeks. The next set of shots will be due around 3 weeks from then. That usually falls at around 9-10 weeks. Your puppy will likely come home at 8 weeks, so the first set will be due 1-2 weeks after the puppy comes home. It is important to keep your puppy on schedule for their puppy vaccinations. Your vet can discuss the best plan at your first vet appointment when the puppy goes home.
  There will be a Health Record in the paperwork that comes with your puppy. Make sure you take this with you to your vet. This will show your vet all the shots and vaccinations that your puppy has had, and he will be able to get you on the right schedule to finish out your puppy's shots.
  Please note that puppies may pick up common parasites, such as giardia, coccidia, roundworm, etc. We do everything in our power to prevent and eliminate these parasites by putting dogs and pups on a strict deworming program. However, mother dogs tend to be more vulnerable to parasites when they have puppies, and may pass parasites along to the pups. Depending on the life cycle of the particular parasite, it is possible that a few pups will go home with one. We ask that you have your puppy checked by a vet within 72 hours of taking them home. In this checkup please make sure the vet checks for parasites. If for any reason your puppy does not check through clear and needs some sort of treatment or medication, we will reimburse you 100% for that cost. But only if you take your puppy to a Licensed Veterinary within 72 hours.

Can I Take My Puppy To Public Places When I First Get Them?

There is an important period of time between 8-16 weeks when puppies learn many of their social skills but also it is a time that fears and nervous behaviours can develop. We want our puppies to be kept safe from communicable diseases before they are fully immunized (which is typically under 16-18 weeks) but it is also important to have them meet new people, dogs, smells, sounds and textures during this time. Having your puppy go with you to safe places - trusted family members and friend’s homes where you know that their dogs are healthy and fully immunized is a good compromise between keeping your puppy away from potential illnesses but also allowing them to experience new things to help them develop into confident, well-adjusted adults.  Taking them for car rides, having positive experiences is SO important, but also keep them away from places that carry high risks for Parvo and other illnesses. Keep your under-immunized puppy away from pet stores, high foot traffic places like dog parks, sidewalks and when you go to the vet, hold your puppy off the ground. Puppies lick their paws and so be aware in the first 2 months that they can pick things up at places like the vet from other sick dogs, but taking precautions like removing your shoes before entering your house, not letting the puppy lick shoes and other contaminated surfaces will help reduce the risk. Don’t let your puppy miss out on fun new experiences, but just be careful about how you do it.

How Often Should I Feed My Puppy?

Most puppies will need to eat 3 times a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner. The quantity varies, depending on the age and size of the puppy, and the quality of the food. I like to give them a generous bowl of food for 10-15 minutes, and once they lose interest in eating, take it away, take your puppy out to the bathroom for the next 20 minutes. Don’t feed your puppy too late at night or your pup will need to go to the bathroom more often when you want to be sleeping!

Use this handy calculator to see how much your puppy should be eating!

When Can My Puppy Come Home?

Puppies can go home at 8 weeks old. You should make arrangements in advance for your “Gotcha Day”.
  As important as the first 8 weeks are in a puppy's development, most of a puppy's training, and socialization happens after they leave us...when they go home with you! The task of training a puppy can be an overwhelming thought to some people, especially when this is your first puppy, or it has been several years since you have had a puppy. This is one reason we were drawn to BAXTER & Bella! While most puppy training classes last for a few weeks or months, the BAXTER & Bella puppy school has lifetime access to 60+ online, step-by-step lessons that you can take at your own pace from your home. Plus, you have access to over 100 videos, printable checklists and charts, field trip activities with your puppy, and more! You can book a LIVE Zoom or Voice call anytime with a professional trainer anytime and as often as you want to at no additional charge!

Read More

Still have questions? Text Tina at 618-421-5246