Newfoundland Overview

Dog Breed:
Breed Group:
Working Group
Sweet, majestic, devoted, patient, and affectionate.
26 -28 inches
100-150 pounds
Life Span:
9-10 years
Coat Colors:
Gray, brown, black, and black and white.
Area of Origin:
Best For:
Large Living Space/Families who are not too house proud/Owners with funds for the high food and veterinary care bills.
Adult Food:
Best Dog Food for Newfoundlands
Puppy Food:
Best Puppy Food for Newfoundlands
Mixed Breeds:
New Shep

Newfoundland Characteristics

Good for First-Time Owners
Good with Children
Easy to Train
Exercise Requirements
Ease of Grooming
Amount of Shedding
Amount of Drooling
Tendency to Bark

About The Newfoundland

  • Large powerful dog

  • Sweet natured

  • Prefers cooler climates

The massive Newfoundland is a powerful dog which combines a strong working ability with a sweet-natured temperament. However, owning a dog who may weigh more than you do comes with its challenges. Not only do you need to consider the size of your home but also if your car will be big enough for trips out or vet visits.

This is not a breed that needs to be walked for hours every day, but they still need daily exercise. You also need to schedule in time for training classes. With a dog of this size, it is essential that they have good manners and can greet people politely to ensure that they’re not a liability.

Coming from the cold of Newfoundland, they have a preference for cooler climates. They can cope with warmer climates, but care will be needed to ensure that they don’t overheat. 

Newfoundland Breed History

  • Developed in Canada

  • Used as a draught and water dog

  • Recognized by the AKC in 1886


The Newfoundland was developed on the island in Canada from which it takes its name. It’s thought that the Newfie was bred from a combination of native Indian dogs and the many European breeds, which traveled across with explorers and fishermen. Come the 17th century, the breed had become well established as the large, web-footed dog we now know. 

The Newfoundland’s useful qualities both as a draught dog and in the water soon came to the attention of the Europeans. When this working ability was combined with their balanced temperament and ease of training, demand was high, and considerable numbers were exported across the Atlantic Ocean. However, not all of these dogs were destined for working life. Many were brought to wander in the estates of the rich and to entertain their children. 

In 1886, the Newfoundland was recognized by the American Kennel Club and is currently the 40th most popular breed out of a total of 195.

Newfoundland Size & Weight

  • A giant breed

  • Height of 28 inches for males and 26 inches for females

  • Males weight up to 150 pounds and females up to 120 pounds


This is a giant breed with males standing 28 inches at the withers and females at 26 inches. The approximate weight of adult males is from 130 to 150 pounds, and adult females from 100 to 120 pounds. 

Despite their sweet temperament, this is still a lot of dog to be exercised and to live with. Very careful consideration is needed as to whether your lifestyle can accommodate a Newfoundland and successfully meet all their needs. 

Newfoundland Personality & Temperament

  • Gentle natured

  • Can be protective

  • Get on well with other family pets


The Newfoundland is well known for their exceptionally gentle and docile nature. Often known as the ‘Nanny Dog,’ their affinity for children is renowned. As youngsters, however, they will need supervision, just in case they accidentally knock toddlers over. 

Many tales have been told of the Newfoundland’s courage in lifesaving exploits from saving Napoleon Bonaparte in 1815 when he was knocked overseas through to a 10-month-old Newfoundland named Boo who saved a drowning man from the Yuba River in Northern California in 1995.

Despite being sweet-tempered, the Newfoundland does also have strong protective instincts. While they are not a breed who will make a good watchdog, they are protectors of their loved ones.

Newfoundlands’ generally get on very well with other dogs and pets in the home. Supervision will be needed where there are smaller dogs to ensure they don’t get injured in play.

Newfoundland Health & Grooming

  • Genetic testing of dogs needed before breeding

  • Through brushing needed once a week

  • Drools a lot

Newfoundland Training

  • Outgoing and intelligent

  • High prey drive

  • Known for being vocal


The Newfoundland puppy is outgoing and intelligent. Attending puppy classes is highly recommended to ensure that they grow up to be a well-mannered companion. With their affectionate and trusting nature, they respond well to gentle reward-based methods. 

Newfoundland Breed clubs across the world arrange training days for their members to teach the skills needed for both water work and drafting. The Newfoundland Club of America has a series of tests starting with beginners to assess and develop the breeds’ natural abilities. 

Some Newfoundlands’ can have a high prey drive. This then means that training control exercises, along with an excellent recall, are essential to keeping them safe when out on walks. 

This isn’t a breed which is known for being vocal. Generally, if they do make a noise, then you know that you need to go and investigate to see what’s happening.

Newfoundland Exercise Requirements

  • Outgoing and intelligent

  • High prey drive

  • Known for being vocal


The adult Newfoundland does not demand a great deal of exercise but can quickly become a couch potato. Daily walks, a run in the garden, or a swim will help to keep them fit and prevent them from becoming overweight. Care is needed not to over-exercise puppies while they are still developing their bone structure.

Newfies can be playful dogs; however, they tend not to play with the intensity of other breeds, and so short and frequent playtimes tend to suit them best.

Newfoundland Diet & Feeding

  • Speak to a veterinarian for advice on individual dog’s needs

  • Look for foods formulated for large breeds

  • Can be liable to bloat

Newfoundland Rescue Groups


Sadly, there are times when Newfoundlands’ can find themselves in need of a new home. While it may because of life circumstances such as illness or divorce, there are also times when owners just didn’t realize the responsibility they were taking on. 

Breed rescue groups such as those listed below can provide help and advice if you’re thinking about offering a Newfoundland their new forever home.


The Newfoundland Club of America Rescue Network –


Colonial Newfoundland Rescue


South Central Newfoundland Rescue

For further information on this amazing breed, take a look at the website for the Newfoundland Club of America –