Newfoundland Dog 

Breed History

Newfoundland dogs are big dogs with huge bone structure, strong, muscular, huge coat and a calm demeanor. Water resistance double coat you will see this huge dog with a lot of fur year around.

North America area of Newfoundland is a Canadian island off the coast. Since they are known to be from this area, they were called the name of the place they come from.  

Natural swimmers made them a great working dog in the water and other places. Ability to swim long distances and underwater makes them fit to be a water rescue animal.

Rescue and lifesaving abilities are a unique characteristic. They can save a full size adult male or female from drowning because of their massive size and strength. Surprisingly, this isn’t the only work these dogs are known to do.

Known for hunting, pulling, and guard dog duties in addition to rescue missions makes this breed incredibly valuable to humans. Versatile dog that can work in different settings and make an impact on the community.

St John dog and Newfoundland were the two known dogs in the same area. This dog is bigger than the St John dog. Saint Bernard’s’ have a lot of their ancestry from this breed as well.


One of the first 50 dogs to get registration in the American Kennel Club and dating back to the late 1800’s. Known all around the world and having a long history of being an official breed. Hundreds of years have come and went, and this dog is still around.

These are the Kennel Clubs hat recognize this breed.

Newfoundland Dog Size

Male Weight: 130-150 pounds

Female Weight: 100-120 pounds

Male Height: 28 inches

Female Height: 26 inches

The males are much larger than the females in this breed. Size differences are significant, and you can identify either gender quickly upon first glance.

Litter Size

Litter size is 8 to 10 puppies on average. Double digit litters are not uncommon either. Most big breeds are prone to have bigger litters than smaller dogs. Following this trend, the Newfoundland is right on par with other big breed dogs.


Solid Colors

  • Black
  • Brown
  • Gray
  • White


  • Chin
  • Chest
  • Toes
  • Tail

Colors on the markings are mostly white but tan markings are also acceptable on darker coat colors.

Newfoundland Dog Price

The price for this dog is $1,000 to $2,500 for a high-quality puppy with papers. Papers will guarantee a certain quality of puppy that will document and trace their bloodline.

Dogs without these credentials will not guarantee you will get the type of the dog you are looking for. Without papers you can expect to pay a few hundreds.


You can expect to have one of the heaviest shedders in the dog community. At least twice per year this dog will shed an excessive amount of their coat. Proper preparation and expectation will help when you have hair in the car, couch, and every area you put the dog.

  1. Brushing
  2. Combing
  3. Bathing
  4. Ears
  5. Nails
  6. Professional Help

Brush the dog often and that means multiple times per week. Keeping the coat healthy and helping with the shedding are the main benefits of brushing at regular intervals.

Combing is important because you will keep the hair separate. Get all the way to the skin and comb out towards the outercoat every time.

Bathe the dog as you see fit. There are times when you can do it on schedule and other times when the dog is dirty, and you need to take care of business.

Ears in a dirt environment will experience more ear infections that other areas. If you live in a desert and windy area, make sure you clean the ears on a weekly basis or watch the vet bills pile up.

Nails will be taken care of with two different options. First one is to exercise them, and they will naturally stay trim. Dogs in the wild don’t need to trim their nails. If you choose to be very lazy then you will need to clip them.

Professional help should be something you really think about getting with this breed. When you see heavy shedding on the horizon take them to get all the extra hair taken off.

Life Span

8- 10 years is how long they live. Shorter than most dog breeds but average for the size of the dog. Knowing how long the dog will live will help you with training and understanding their senior phase.

A decade is still a long time for most people making up at least 10 percent of your life if you live to one hundred. Unlikely, so either way this dog will be a significant part of your life.

Health Issues

These are the five test their Kennel Club recommends you check for this breed. All these conditions should be checked with the vet as a screening precaution.

Hips – dysplasia is rapid with bigger breeds and it is a great decision to take them to the vet and get an x-ray done. They will be able to determine if the hip sockets properly fit the leg bone inside or if it is irregular.

Elbow – Dysplasia is a growth that starts to deteriorate the elbow joint. Stiffness and disinterest in working out and regular physical activity are all signs that they might be suffering form this issue.

DNA Cystinuria – there are different stages that they can be suffering from, but the condition is an indication that they have failure in the kidneys. Newfoundland’s suffer from type one which is the least serious out of the three.

Eyes – checking out the eyes will help determine early issues such as cherry eye, cataracts, glaucoma, and ultimately blindness. Annual checkups will give the vet the possibility to catch these conditions in the early stages.

Patella Palpation – knee condition of a floating kneecap which normally affects a smaller dog and not a bigger one. Nonetheless the surgery is expensive, and the condition is painful.

Breed Group

There is no other place to put this dog than in the working group. Its ability to work on rescues, guard dog, pull, sled, and many other make them one of the best candidates for the group.

These dogs all have one thing in common, they all did some activity that helped humans in the past. Some of those activities are not in demand like they once were. For example, a farm dog was in demand when more had them.

Now some of these jobs have come and gone but the dogs and humans have found new areas for their assistance. Here are the dogs in the working group

Exercise Needs

Large and heavyweight dogs can be the gift and the curse. When you start exercising them, they can show signs of exhaustion quickly. If you don’t exercise them, you will notice that the dog can be destruction.

130 pounds of destruction is something that can make a dog owner want to get rid of them.

Working dogs have a higher energy boost than most and giving them a job can be beneficial for both their physical and mental needs.

As a basic principle you should look at your dog’s behavior when assessing how much exercise to give them. When the dog is misbehaving or simply not listening take that opportunity to increase the workload.

Remember there is always a direct relationship between the behavior and exercise.

Here is what we recommend.

Morning (1 hour run, walk or treadmill)

Evening (30 minutes run, walk, or treadmill)

Energetic dogs will receive more runs because they need the outlet. Better to walk dogs that are calm and listening. They’re in the proper state of mind to receive to walk without pulling and constant lunging at other dogs.

When this dog doesn’t get the exercise, they need you will exercise behavior that is undesirable. Although you will correct the behavior it will be difficult to train the dog to behave that doesn’t get an outlet.

Most people are shocked at how quick the dog’s behavior changes.

The highest energy levels will consist of two runs a day to get them under control. Older dogs can get a run sometime and a walk often. Older senior dogs will never get a run for the most part and very short walks.


  1. Exercise program
  2. Commands
  3. Socialization
  4. Corrections

Exercising the dog every day is the key to running a successful dog training program. People will have objections to this statement, but it isn’t as radical as people make it out to be. Watch any documentary of lions, wolves, or wild dogs without any human interference. You will see them walking and running the entire time. Why wouldn’t we exercise the dog?

Commands are a part of dog training, but it is so easy that it doesn’t need too much instruction. For example, the dog will sit but still jump all over you. He will lay but bark all night long and be so energetic it is embarrassing to have family around. Commands simply need repetition. When it comes time to give commands make sure you do it before life activities. Sit before you use the bathroom etc.

Socialize the dog at dog parks, vet, friends, family, and other animals like cats if they’re apart of your daily life. People are going to wait eight months before each session with no exercise and bring them around people or dogs. That’s when you see an explosive of energy. Best methods are to exercise in the morning and then again in the afternoon and then take them to the dog park with less energy. Doing this over time will give your dog the best socialization.

Lastly, correcting the dog is something that happens without humans. We must make sure we do it the right way. Dogs correct other dogs without excessive force and brute strength. Correcting is not to afflict pain but to get the dogs attentions. If you can do that verbally then perfect. If not use a leash correction and progress from there.

Are Newfoundland’s good family dogs?

Yes, they’re excellent family dogs and can adjust to living in the house very well. People will look at the massive size of this dog and wouldn’t think twice about breaking into your home.

Although they have this large size these dogs are good with the family. Lazy and relaxed are words you always hear to describe them especially when they start getting a little bit older in age.

Additional Resources