All About the Newfoundland Dog Breed

Newfie Information

Hudson young Newfoundland dog enjoying sea view.
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The Newfoundland is a giant dog that with a hard-working spirit and a gentle disposition. The breed is intelligent, noble and very loyal. Often called Newfs or Newfies, Newfoundlands make excellent working dogs. However, they are also calm and affectionate companions. 

Newfoundland Dog Breed Details

Group: Working

Size: Weight: 100-150 pounds; Height: 26 to 28 inches tall at the shoulder

Colors: Brown, black, gray or black & white

History of the Newfoundland Dog Breed

The Newfoundland dog breed originates from the Canadian province of Newfoundland, where it has a rich history as an ideal working dog. These superb water dogs have assisted fisherman, rescued potential drowning victims and hauled carts. It is believed that the ancestors of Newfies were brought to Newfoundland by European fisherman. Though their exact lineage is widely debated, the most popular theory suggests that the Newfie evolved from Great Pyrenees dogs and black retrievers.

By the 19th century, Newfies had become popular in England. Soon after, the breed arrived in the US and was recognized by the AKC in 1879.

Caring for Your Newfoundland Dog

The Newfie has a thick, medium-long coat that serves as insulation from cold waters. This coat has a relatively high shedding rate (especially in spring and fall) that requires regular grooming, specifically hair-brushing two to three times per week.

The Newfie may naturally wear down its nails due to its large size, but be sure to check the toes and trim the nails as needed. This breed can be a drooler, so many owners prefer to keep a "slobber cloth" handy. When a Newfie shakes its head, there a good change the spit will go flying!

Newfies have a strong drive to work and protect.

They need daily exercise to keep them fit and happy. In addition, Newfies will benefit from some type of "job," such as guarding the home or obedience competition. In general, these are usually very calm, loyal and loving companions.

Newfies are intelligent dogs that respond very well to training. Proper socialization and training are both very important for all dogs. However, the giant size of the Newfie make training and socialization essential so you can maintain control of your dog.

Newfoundland Dog Breed Health Problems

Responsible breeders strive to maintain the highest breed standards as established by kennel clubs like the AKC. Dogs bred by these standards are less likely to inherit health conditions. However, some hereditary health problems can occur in the breed. As with any dog breed, it's important to visit the veterinarian for regular checkups. Your vet may be able to detect health problems early. The following are some conditions to be aware of:

Is the Newfoundland Dog Breed Right for You?

The Newfoundland is an affectionate and gentle dog breed that makes a delightful companion. These versatile dogs have a natural instinct to protect and assist people, making them wonderful service dogs and family pets.

 Typically, this breed gets along very well with children. However, a Newfie may not realize its size. Use caution around very small children. 

You don't necessarily need a huge home and large yard to have a Newfie. However, a very tiny home can make things difficult. Make sure there is enough room in your home for a 100+ pound dog to get around comfortably. Also be sure you have the space for large dog beds and lots of dog supplies.

If you would love to get a Newfoundland of your own, make sure to do research first. Ask veterinarians, Newfie owners, reputable breeders, and Newfie rescue groups for more information about the breed.