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Monks sell St. Bernards

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St. Bernard Pass, Switzerland

The monks who run the hostel at the St. Bernard Pass in the Alps said this week they must sell the famous rescue dogs they’ve bred for centuries. St. Bernards, with their keen sense of smell and tremendous endurance, have plowed through snowbanks to rescue some 2,000 travelers over the past 200 years. But the last such rescue mission was in 1975, and since then helicopters have picked up stranded hikers. The dogs are now just a tourist attraction, and the monks say they can’t afford to feed the 34 dogs currently in their care all winter. “It will take a load off of us and allow us to spend more time with those who need it,” said Brother Frederic. The new owners will be required to return the dogs to the pass every summer for the tourist season.

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