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Pedigree Dogs > Newfoundland
The Newfoundland is a Working dog. Newfoundlands can be
black, brown, gray, or black and white (Landseer). They
were originally bred and used as a working dog for
fishermen in the Dominion of Newfoundland, now part of
Canada. They are known for their giant size, tremendous
strength, calm dispositions, and loyalty. Newfoundland
dogs excel at water rescue/lifesaving because of their
muscular build, thick double coat, webbed feet, and
innate swimming abilities.
Newfoundlands ('Newfs', 'Newfies') have webbed feet and
a water-resistant coat. Males normally weigh 60–70 kg
(130–150 lb), and females 45–55 kg (100–120 lb), placing
them in the "Giant" weight range but some Newfoundland
dogs have been known to weigh over 90 kg (200 lb) - and
the largest on record weighed 120 kg (260 lbs) and
measured over 6 feet (1.82 m) from nose to tail, ranking
it among the biggest Molossers. They may grow up to
22–28 inches (55-71 cm) tall at the shoulder.
The American Kennel Club (AKC) standard colors of the
Newfoundland dogs are: black, brown, gray, and Landseer
(white dog with black markings) Other colors are not
rare, and not recommended because of breeding double
recessive genes; The Kennel Club (KC) permits only
black, brown, and landseer; the Canadian Kennel Club (CKC)
permits only black and landseer. Contrary to popular
belief The Landseer is named after the artist Sir Edwin
Henry Landseer, who featured them in many of his
paintings. AKC, CKC, and KC all treat Landseer as part
of the breed. Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)
consider the ECT Landseer to be a separate breed. It is
a taller, more narrow white dog with black markings not
bred with a Newfoundland.
The Newfoundland's extremely large bones give it mass,
while its large musculature gives it the power it needs
to take on rough ocean waves and powerful tides. These
dogs have great lung capacity for swimming extremely
long distances, and a thick, oily and waterproof double
coat which protects them from the chill of icy waters.
The droopy lips and jowls make the dog drool. In the
water, the dog's massive webbed paws give it maximum
propulsion. The swimming stroke is not an ordinary dog
paddle. Unlike other dogs, the Newfoundland moves its
limbs in a down-and-out motion, which can be seen as a
The Newfoundland dog is legendary for its calm and
docile nature and its strength.They are incredibly loyal
and make incredible working dogs. It is for this reason
that this breed is known as "the gentle giant" or the
nanny dog. International kennel clubs generally describe
the breed as having a sweet temper.
Newfoundlands were brought and introduced to the St.
Bernard breed in the 18th century when the population
was threatened by an epidemic of distemper. They share
many characteristics of many mountain dog breeds such as
the Great Pyrenees.
The Newfoundland breed originated in Newfoundland, and
is descended from a breed indigenous to the island known
as the lesser Newfoundland, or St. John's Dog. The
mastiff characteristics of the Newfoundland are likely a
result of breeding with Portuguese Mastiffs brought to
the island by Portuguese fishermen beginning in the 16th
The speculation that Newfoundlands may be partly
descended from big black bear dogs introduced by the
Vikings in 1001 A.D. is based more in romance than in
It is common that "Newfs" live to be 8 to 10 years of
age; 10 years is a commonly cited life expectancy.