Loyal and affectionate companion and saviour of alpine hikers and mountaineers. It was named after the monks of the hospice on the Great St. Bernard Pass in Switzerland. The dogs were used as search and rescue dogs to find missing hikers, climbers and skiers. They never received any special training from the monks. Instead, younger dogs would learn how to perform search and rescue operations from older dogs. The most famous St. Bernard who saved people at the pass was Barry, who reportedly saved between 40 and 100 lives. There is an ineradicable tradition to portray St. Bernards wearing small barrels of brandy around their necks like Josef in the famous Heidi cartoons. This was apparently intended to revive avalanche victims, however, a stiff drink is the last thing you should offer a hypothermia victim. Due to the dogs’ impressive sense of direction and lovable stubbornness they are commonly compared to the people of the Alps.