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Newfoundland Dog


  • Origin: Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
  • Alternate names: Newf, Newfie, The Gentle Giant, Blackbear
  • Size: Large
  • Life Span: 09-11 years
  • Popularity: Ranked #36 in 2017
  • Availability in India: Rare
  • Avg Puppy Price in India: ₹65,000 and above
  • Dog Breed Group: Working Group
  • Guide Dog: Yes

Is Newfoundland Good for Indians?

It’s pretty rare to find a Newfoundland dog in the Asian countries and the reason mostly being their low tolerance to high temperatures and the extravagant financial investment that is required to purchase them and then efficiently maintain them. In India, a reputable breeder can sell a Newfoundland Dog as high as 2-3 lakhs. And, because of such high expenses, a lot of people are yet to experience the gentle and sweet personality of this massive pooch. But, it is also true that they need to be given extra care and attention especially if the weather conditions are hot and humid which is very much the case in a country like India, hence, their low resistance to hot weather and enormous price tag justifies their low demand and availability in India.

Newfoundland Dog Official Breed Standards

The Newfoundland is quite a large yet well-balanced dog that is heavily feathered and has an overall muscular and strong body. They carry their heads with a sense of pride and dignity and are fairly sweet-tempered. Official standards for the Newfoundland Dog are given as follows:

  • Newfoundland Height and Weight

The Newfoundland Dog is considered to be a Giant breed in some regions, so that should give you a hint about the size of this massive doggy. On average, a Newfie weigh somewhere around 45-70 kilograms and stands tall with a decent height of 25-29 inches (at the shoulder).






59-70 kg

27-29 inch



25-27 inch

  • Coat

They possess a water-resistant, flat-lying double coat in which the undercoat is dense and soft and the outer coat is coarse and moderately long in length. The hair on the foreface and the muzzle region is fine and short but the rest of the body is normally quite heavily feathered.

  • Body

They have a muscly and deep-boned body with a strong neck which is very well-set on their sturdy shoulders. Their chest is deep and full and the back region is fairly broad, strong and muscular. Their tail is also quite wide at the base and is covered with long dense hair. The forequarters are muscular and well-laid back and the hindquarters are equally strong and powerful.

  • Head

They have a massive head with a strongly developed skull which is quite broad and sturdy. Their eyes are relatively small, mostly dark brown in color and are set wide apart. The ears are triangular in shape with rounded tips and they lie close to the head. Their forehead and the foreface are quite smooth and do not possess any folds of skin or wrinkles.

  • Jaws

They have a strong jaw region with their teeth meeting in a level or scissors bite. The muzzle is very broad and deep with the top being fairly rounded.

  • Temperament

The Newfoundland Dogs are very calm and even-tempered canines who are very loyal and devoted to their family members. They are always hugely affectionate and friendly towards their loved ones and are also quite protective of them. Although they are massive in size, it shouldn’t deflect from the fact that they remain extremely gentle and benign with almost everybody and are thus known as the “Gentle-Giants” of the doggy world. They are also quite courageous and are known to have a decent watchdog ability. General temperamental traits of the Newfoundland Dog are listed below:

  • Gentle
  • Affectionate
  • Courageous
  • Intelligent
  • Cheerful
  • Loyal
  • Sweet
  • Social

Newfoundland Dog Overview

The Newfoundland dog is a sizeable breed that bears a fine resemblance to a bear. They have a large-sized body with a moderately long coat, but the outer appearance is where the similarities between them and a bear end as these dogs are extremely kind and gentle with most of the people they meet.

They are considered a very good companion and a great family pet because of their affectionate and loving personality. They are also very tender and careful with small kids but it is better to be a little more watchful when they are around kids as they may inadvertently knock down or lean on the kids or the frailed-bodied.

It is also a well-known fact that the Newfoundland dogs are awesome swimmers. They love the water and are always ready to take a dip in a swimming pool or any water body, as a matter of fact. And, because of their ability to swim superbly, they are used as lifeguards in several parts of the world.

They are also quite obedient and loyal to their owners and loved ones and thus, they are fairly easy to train. They love to learn new things and commands and are known to be reasonably quick learners. And, apart from their great swimming ability, their sweet and gentle temper also comes in handy and they are used as therapy dogs in many places especially in European and North American countries.

Popular Newfoundland Dog Types and Colors

The Newfoundland dog is divided into different types on the basis 0f the various colors that it is available in. These colors are as follows:

  • Black
  • Gray
  • Brown
  • White and Black

Newfoundland Dog Breed Characteristics



Sensitivity Level


Affection Level


Potential for mouthiness




Drooling Potential


Barking Tendencies


Energy Level


Friendly towards dogs


Health Issues


Friendly towards other animals




Child Friendly




Exercise Needs


Shedding Level


Grooming Needs


Social Needs


Good for novice owners


Stranger Friendly




Watchdog Ability


Tolerates Heat


Tolerates Cold


Newfoundland Maintenance and Care

  • Feeding

The Newfies require a substantial amount of food to remain in perfect shape and health. They do well on a good-quality diet which can be given as per the advice of a skilled veterinarian. The important thing to note about their feeding requirements is that they should be given a good amount of food but in multiple portions and at regular intervals. Giving them large quantities of food all at once is not beneficial to them and therefore, not recommended.

  • Exercise

They were bred as working dogs and thus they are very cheerful when they are outside the house doing something. They love to play games with their family members and are also quite fond of slow-paced long walks with their owners and loved ones in a park. As mentioned, they love to swim and thus taking them for a swim at least once or twice a week can be highly valuable to their health and will also make them extremely happy. Also, it should be noted that any kind of exercise or heavy physical activities should be avoided around the mealtimes.

  • Training

The Newfoundland dogs are quite easy to train. They are very responsive and agreeable while learning new things and are always looking to please their owners/trainers. They learn the things that are taught to them fairly quickly and are quite obedient and well-mannered while getting trained. But they are a bit sensitive by nature and thus, harsh training methods are not advised for them.

  • Grooming and Shedding

They shed quite profusely at least twice a year and during that period, they should be brushed daily with a long-toothed comb and a slicker brush. But apart from that, their brushing requirements are not that high and only needs to be done once or twice a week. But this changes, if the Newfie is neutered, as it sheds all year long and thus should be brushed several times a week. Trimming of nails and bathing them can be done as deemed necessary by the owner.

  • Health Issues

The Newfoundland dogs are prone to several health-related issues which can be highly harmful to them and thus they must receive extra care and protection from their owners and family members. Common health problems found in the Newfies are:

  • Gastric Torsion
  • Cardiac Diseases
  • Cystinuria
  • Sub-Aortic Stenosis (SAS)
  • Epilepsy
  • Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD)
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Visits to the Vet

It is recommended to take this large sized dog at least once a month to a skilled vet for health and full body check-ups.

Newfoundland History and Background

As their name suggests, the Newfoundland dog hails from the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. It is believed that they were bred as working dogs and were specifically used by the fishermen to pull heavy fishing nets and several other types of equipment. And, they were, and still are, known to be very good swimmers and hence they were also used to rescue sailors from the water who had accidentally fallen overboard.

The cynologists have gathered so much information about them, but their true origin and beginning are still quite unclear. There are many theories which state how these dogs came into existence but there is no concrete evidence to prove any of the theory to be hundred percent correct.

The first theory states that these dogs were left by the Vikings in 1000 A.D. and then they were bred with the wolves. The second assumption is that this breed was a result of specific cross-breeding between the American Black Wolf and the Tibetan Mastiff. And the final speculation is that the Newfoundland Dog came into existence due to the breeding between various European breeds like the Portuguese Water Dogs, the Mastiffs, and the Pyrenean Shepherds.

Whichever theory might be true, but it doesn’t change the fact that these dogs had an extremely rich history and past, and they were incredible at their job as lifeguards which can be proved by several lives they saved and rescued during their time with the sailors on their boats. In today's time, they still prove their worth as they are heavily used as water rescue dogs in several parts of the world. They were recognized by the AKC in the year 1886 as an official breed.