You Want a Newfoundland?
What is a Newfoundland?
A very large dog, and when full grown generally
stands about 24" (female)
or 28" (male) at the shoulders. They usually weigh between 110 to 150
pounds, and the males are generally larger than the females. Most Newfs are
Black, but other colors are White and Black (Landseer), Brown, or Gray. They
normally have double coats; a wooly undercoat, and long guard fur.
Drawbacks about owning a Newfoundland
Newfs drool; some a lot, some once in a while. When you own a Newf, your home
will be decorated with slobber. Slobber will be everywhere, just like the
balls of fur.
They have a lot of fur, and
are considered a "high maintenance" breed, since they need
constant grooming. Grooming must be on a routine basis, otherwise,
if neglected it might take you all day just to untangle the fur.
Newfs shed a lot.
Newfs are very BIG DOGS. Their
tails are at the perfect height to wipe out the contents of your
coffee tables, and their noses are dining room table height or higher.
If untrained, they will knock down children, and senior citizens,
by bumping or jumping onto the person.
Due to their large size, and rapid
growth the first year, they will eat a lot. Depending on the Newf's
age, size, and activity level, a Newf may eat between 4 to 8 cups
of high quality food daily.
Some regular expenses include
veterinarian care, professional grooming, boarding, etc. Since a
Newf is large, expenses are higher than a toy poodle.
Owning a dog requires confining
your dog within your property. You will need a fenced-in yard, or
kennel run. Newfs require a fence to be at least six feet high. A
Newf should never be tied up, or put on a trolley. Shelter must be
provided to protect your dog from extreme weather conditions. Most
Newfs want to spend time with their owner, and will not be happy
if left alone outside for long periods of time.
Newfs will need regular exercise,
especially an adult. Most adult Newfs are inactive if left alone.
To keep them happy and healthy, you need to take them out for long
walks, play games, and take them swimming (if possible).
Will you have time to take
your Newf to obedience classes? Puppies will need early obedience
training since a Newf puppy may weigh 90 to 100 pounds at 8 or 9
Will you have time to spend 10 to 15 minutes daily, training your
Newf between your weekly classes?
The breed is prone to the following
health problems (but not limited to): Hip Dysplasia, Heart Problems,
Skin Ailments, and Arthritis. To help you in trying to find a healthy
puppy, check with the Breeder to insure that the parents of the puppy
have been OFA certified for their hips, and have had heart clearances.
Unfortunately, like most giant
breeds, their life expectancy is very short, usually about 8 to 10
Good reasons to own a Newfoundland
The Newfoundland is known as the "Gentle Giant", loyal and kind companions
to humans. Temperament is the hallmark of the breed, and most Newfs are great
They are intelligent, versatile
working dogs, love the water and possesses strong water rescue instinct.
Most Newfs enjoy pulling carts for children, hauling wood or the
family's Christmas tree. They do well in obedience and tracking.
Due to their calm disposition,
most Newfs are regular volunteers visiting nursing homes, schools,
and various health facilities.
The Newfoundland is truly a magnificent
animal, and beautiful to behold. They have a proud head carriage,
and you can see their intelligence and serenity when you look into
If this is the breed for you,
the following guidelines will help you purchase a Newfoundland
Write, call or visit at least two or three breeders. Be sure to see an adult
Newf so you will understand the size of this dog. Try to attend local dog shows,
and visit with Newf owners. Look at the Standard
for the Newfoundland which are the guidelines that describe the ideal Newf.
Plan to wait 4 to 6 months or
longer for a puppy; a healthy puppy is worth waiting for.
Buy a puppy from a reputable
reputable breeder usually is an active member of the local Newfoundland
Club, and the Newfoundland Club of America. The breeder is
usually a participant at dog shows, whether obedience or other working
dog events. The Newfoundland
Club of America, Inc. publishes a Breeders List. It is
included in the General Education packet which also contains a booklist,
subscription information to the quarterly magazine Newf Tide, membership
information, regional club and rescue information and the booklet
The Newf And You. The packet can be ordered by sending $ 5.00
to the Newfoundland Club of America at P. O. Box 2614, Cheyenne,
Most reputable breeders will
not release their puppies until 8 weeks of age. It has been
noted that it is critical that the puppy be with the mother and littermates
for proper socialization.
When visiting the breeder,
observe their facility. It should be clean, lots of drinking
water available, adequate shelter and space provided for the dogs.
the Newfs should be good-natured and approachable.
There is another option to getting
a Newf, and that is to look into Newfoundland Rescue.
10 Tips on Where To Buy a Purebred
Buying a purebred pup is like
marriage or any other long-term relationship -- impulse or convenience shouldn't
determine where you do your match-making. The pup you buy should
be a quality companion that looks and acts as a fine representative
of his breed. Considering the source of the pup is the first step
of the smart buyer. Rate your pup's origin with this checklist.
- Sells pups as merchandise
to anyone willing to pay. Doesn't screen buyers and will
sell to inappropriate homes.
- Obtains stock from
sources who breed for profit, often from "puppy mills" or
local people who mate inferior specimens to sell at
low cost. Reputable breeders never place pups in pet
due to Point #1 (above).
- Pups often from breeding
stock which has had poor health care and/or living conditions.
Breeding stock not screened for genetic problems.
- Health guarantees are
minimum prescribed by law. Sales personnel unwilling or
unable to discuss diseases or genetic problems a breed
may be prone to.
- Sales staff often doesn't
have in-depth knowledge of breeds sold.
- Pet shop display limits
the socialization, exercise and affection individual pups
need at a critical point in development.
- Pet shop offers AKC
registration papers as proof of "quality".
Doesn't mention that AKC accepts registrations without
if breeding stock is sound and true to type.
- Pet shops unwilling
or unable to produce pedigree, or name, address & phone
of breeder prior to sale.
- Price at high end of
local range for what are usually just generic specimens
and may be breed deviations.
- Pet shop owner doesn't
care about welfare of pup after purchase. If, after some
time, you have training or health problems with your pup,
you're on your own.
or "Backyard" Breeder
- Motive for breeding: "fun", "good
for kids," or make money. Doesn't screen buyers
and seldom refuses to sell, even if buyer is unsuitable.
- Breeds family pet to
any convenient pet of same breed just to have purebred
pups. Has no concern for genetics, bloodlines, or breed
- Though pet may be well-loved,
it wasn't x-rayed for hip dysplasia nor checked for other
- Offers no health guarantees
beyond proof of shots. Unqualified to give help if problems
- Seller has little knowledge
of breed history or AKC breed standard. May claim this
doesn't matter for "just pets".
- Pups raised in makeshift
accommodations indicating lack of long-term investment
- Even when selling "just
pets", may produce AKC papers or "championship
pedigree" as proof of quality. Yet seller doesn't
increase own knowledge through participation in national
or local breed club. Doesn't show own dogs to "prove" quality.
- May be unwilling to
show buyer entire litter or to introduce dam of litter.
Can't or won't compare/critique pups or pups' ancestors.
- Prices at low end of
local range since has to move pups rapidly.
- No concern of individual
pup's and breed's future. Doesn't use AKC's limited registration
option or ask for spay/neuter contract to guard against
breeding of substandard pets. If you can't keep pup, tells
you to take it to dog pound or sell it.
- Dedication to producing
quality dogs is serious avocation. Has so much invested
in dogs that struggles to break even, not make profit.
However, will only sell pups to approved buyers.
- Can explain how planned
breeding to emphasize specific qualities through linebreeding,
out-crossing, or more rarely, inbreeding.
- Has breeding stock
x-rayed to check for hip dysplasia and test for other genetic
faults. Can produce certification to prove claims.
- Lifetime commitment
to replace a dog with proven genetic faults or to help
owner deal with problem.
- Loves breed and can
talk at length about its background, uses, and ideal type.
- Has a serious investment
in dog equipment such as puppy pens, crates, grooming tables
- and knows how to use it.
- Is member of local
or national dog club, indicating a love for sport of dogs.
Exhibits own dogs as an objective test of how stock measure
- Shows off litter and
dam in sanitary environment. Helps buyer evaluate and
choose pup. Explains criteria for "show picks" versus "pet
- Prices will be at high
end of local range, not cut-rate. Price won't reflect all
that's invested in pups.
- After purchase, will
help with grooming or training problems. Will take back
pup you can't keep rather than see it disposed of inappropriately.
Sells pets with spay/neuter agreement or limited AKC registration
for welfare of breed. Reputation based on your satisfaction.