If you’ve ever wondered what a Labrador Retriever would be like if they were twice the size and twice as hairy, the Newfoundland dog would fit the bill. These incredibly sweet dogs are hard-working and trainable, making them excellent companions.
The Newfoundland dog or Newfie grows exceedingly large, but despite their imposing stature they’re very popular with families. They’re devoted and loving to their family members, and are equally friendly with strangers.
Newfies can be a bit goofy, which can be hard to handle since they’re so big and heavy. They do best with experienced dog owners who know how to train their dogs starting at an early age.
Because of their dedication to their owners and swimming ability, they’re still used as working dogs in their home provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada. But even city-dwellers with no intention of putting their dog to work will appreciate the positive qualities of the Newfoundland dog.
Height64 to 76 cm at the shoulder
Weight100 to 150 pounds
Life Expectancy8 to 10 years
Coat ColoursBlack, brown, grey, white
Here are some of the qualities you can expect from the Newfoundland dog, rated from one to five stars. However, all dogs are individuals, and your dog may not display exactly the same characteristics.
The precise origin of the Newfoundland dog breed is unknown. We do know that Sir Joseph Banks initially recognized the breed in the late 18th century.
The breed was first developed as a fisherman’s working dog that would help bring in nets full of fish. As a result, much like the Labrador Retriever from the same province, the Newfoundland dog thrives in the water, where their webbed feet and thick insulating coats are used to full effect.
The Canadian government had placed large taxes on dog ownership during the period when the Newfoundland dog was first identified. As a result, the breed was in decline and in serious danger of dying out.
Luckily, noted painter, Edwin Landseer, and the governor of Newfoundland, the Honourable Harold MacPherson, were fans of the breed and contributed greatly toward the breed’s resurgence.
One of the main traits of the Newfoundland dog is a sweet disposition and gentle demeanour. They tend to love children in particular, though they still should not be left unsupervised around smaller kids.
Newfies shed and drool, though these may not be deal-breakers for fans of the breed. Their grooming needs are significant due to their large size and thick, dense coats of water-resistant fur. You may want to consider learning to groom them yourself. Expect to have to brush your Newfoundland daily during shedding season, which happens twice a year.
While Newfoundlands work hard with their owners, they don’t require an unreasonable amount of exercise each day. Around 30 minutes of exercise is enough, whether through gentle walks or play.
Adult Newfoundland dogs will need around 3 to 4 cups of dry dog food each day, and Newfoundland puppies will require around half that amount. Watch their intake as they are prone to weight gain.
Newfoundlands need training from a young age due to their adult size and weight. While they aren’t aggressive in the least, they may not realise how big they are – teaching them proper behaviours will help prevent any accidents when they grow up.
While Newfoundland dogs are generally healthy, it’s still best to avoid potential genetic issues by buying your Newfoundland puppies from a reputable breeder. Ensure that your chosen breeder is registered with a breeding organisation that upholds standards for the care of the breeding animals.
When looking for a Newfoundland dog for sale, ask your breeder whether they conduct health checks and genetic tests. Your breeder should have a good knowledge of the genetic profile of all their dogs.
No. While Newfies are gentle and calm most of the time, they rely on their human family members for comfort and structure throughout their day. They dislike being alone and prefer to be working alongside their owners.
Yes, Newfoundlands can make good watchdogs as they are protective and loyal towards their family, and can be vocal when strangers enter their territory.
The information is for general use only. For any specific advice or queries, please consult with your veterinarian.
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