Type: Guardian Dog

Height: 26 - 28 inches.

Weight: 110 -150 lbs.

Life Span: 10 - 11 years.

Litter Size: 8 - 10 puppies.

Country of Origin: Canada

Activity: Outdoors - High. Indoors - Low.

Watch-dog: High. Newfoundlands are very alert to their surroundings, and keep an eye on their family at all times.

Guard-dog: Low. They are a very friendly breed.


The Newfoundland is an exceptionally patient dog who fits into any type of household. The Newfoundland is a large and beautiful breed who rarely has a bad temper, unless provoked. Known for their love and ability to swim, Newfoundlands have been known to rescue drowning victims and have been used for this purpose in the past. Newfoundlands are also known to be very good with children, younger and older alike. They also get along well with other pets, making them ideal for a family environment. One would never know from a personality description that this gentle breed is actually quite large. They are big dogs with a lot of thick fur, which is oily and water resistant. They have webbed paws, like some other water breeds, making them great swimmers. They come in colors of black, gray, or black and white. Newfies, as they are often affectionately referred to, are a giant, peaceful breed. As with any giant breed their owner will require vigilance in their raising and caring for the Newfoundland, in return they will give their complete devotion and constant protection. Newfoundland

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Colors: Black, brown, gray, or Landseer (black head with black markings on a white background).

Coat: Flat, dense, and coarse textured double coat; oily and water resistant. Outer coat is moderately long, straight or slightly wavy.

Temperament: Newfoundlands are responsive and docile. They are very loving and gentle, especially with children. They have been known to rescue people who aren't even drowning, and are uncaring about their own well-being when it comes to saving another's life. They are devoted, loyal and brave. Newfoundlands love the water and should have access to it, they are easygoing and friendly.

With Children: Yes, good with small children, provides a wonderful companion for growing active children.

With Pets: Yes, does well with other pets.

Special Skills: Originally a fisherman's dog, now a family pet.

Care and Training: Daily brushing of the Newfoundland's thick double coat with a hard brush is required. Shedding of the undercoat is twice a year. Avoid bathing unless necessary as it will strip away their natural coat's oils. Instead, use a dry shampoo. They need regular, moderate exercise even though they would love to laze around. The Newfoundland loves to swim and they should be given the opportunity whenever possible. A calm and balanced manner of training is needed, as they are a very sensitive breed who will listen to the tone of your voice.

Learning Rate: High. Obedience - High. Problem Solving - High. This is an intelligent and pleasing breed.

Special Needs: Financial ability for giant-sized needs, grooming, supervision around water so that they don't accidentally hurt other swimmers, and training.

Living Environment: Not suited for apartment living, as they need lots of room. A large fenced yard is essential. If possible, they should have access to a pool of water, even if it is a kiddie pool. They are more suited to colder climates than hot climates, as they have a heavy coat. The best owner for this breed would be an easy going owner who is not fastidious, who is living in a rural or suburban environment.

Health Issues: Hip and elbow dysplasia, genetic heart conditions, skin allergies, and hypothyroidism.

History: One of the few native North American breeds, they come from Newfoundland Island in Canada, where they were said to have first served as fisherman's aids to the British and French fisherman who reached these North Atlantic shores. Newfoundlands' ancestors may have included the Great Pyrenees and Tibetan Mastiff. Folklore tells of a Tibetan Mastiff type breed that traveled with Indians to the Maritime Provinces of Canada. Four thousand years later in 1001 A.D., Vikings were said to have traveled to the same place with "bear like dogs". These two were thought to have bred together to create what is now known as the Newfoundland. Later in the 1600s when European fishing boats stopped by the islands, Portuguese Water Dogs and Great Pyrenees were thought to have landed on the island as well, breeding with the already "bear like dog". This is probably what gave the breed a waterproof coat and webbed feet. More than one breed came from this mix: Lesser St. John's Dog (AKA Labrador Retriever), Greater St. John's Dog (Newfie and Landseer). They were bred by the early settlers to pull sleds, hunt and guard. Often they were used to pull drunken sailors out of the water and carrying lines from ship to ship. They adapted to the rugged conditions of Newfoundland by developing webbed feet and an oily coat which allows them to remain in the water for long periods of time. Back then they were mixed with smaller dogs, and had lighter bones than the Newfies of today, as well as different colored coats. In the 1800s a standard was written for the breed, and they became very popular in England. Today they are popular as a household pet throughout Europe and North America.

First Registered by the AKC: 1886

AKC Group: Working

Class: Working

Registries: AKC, ANKC, CKC, FCI (Group 2), KC (GB), UKC