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Beginners Guide To Grooming Your Newfoundland At Home

The Newfoundland is a giant breed dog that has a water-resistant double coat.

The second layer of their coat, the undercoat, is soft and dense.

The outer coat or the top layer is long and coarse.

Due to their thick double coat, Newfoundlands need to be groomed weekly if not daily to keep their coat and skin healthy and free from debris and painful mats.

While a puppy coat doesn’t require much grooming at first, getting your Newfie used to being groomed should start the day that you bring them home!

If you put it off, you’ll end up with a large dog that bites at the brush, refuses to get on the grooming table and runs away from you every time you reach for the dog brush

brown newfoundland dog sitting on grooming table

In your puppy’s first few months with you should focus on introducing them to all the different grooming tools including:

  • a pin brush
  • comb
  • dog rake
  • slicker brush
  • dog dryer
  • grooming table
  • nail clippers

Even if you plan to take your Newfoundland to a professional groomer, you should still take the time to brush and comb them regularly. 

All of my Newfies have always been placed on the grooming table the first day they came home.

You have a very small window of opportunity to get them used to being groomed before the puppy fear stage sets in, so hop to it!

Here’s what has worked well for my Newfies over the years.

brown newfie puppy on grooming table

Brushing and Combing

Even though your puppy doesn’t have their full adult coat yet, you still aim to brush its coat for at least a few minutes a day at first. 

Once they get used to the brush, you can switch to every other day.

Always reward them for good behavior with some yummy puppy treats!

Pick and choose your time for brushing wisely!

woman line combing a newfoundland dog s

Obviously, if your puppy is full of energy and has a case of the zoomies, it’s not a good idea to ask them to sit still while you brush them. 

Work smarter not harder!

Just a few strokes of the brush is all you need right now, don’t try for a marathon, just run the brush through their coat a few times and end the session there. 

The same goes with the comb and believe me, you’re going to use this comb a lot when they’re blowing their coat in a few years. 

Newfoundlands shed year-round but they blow their coat twice a year, usually in the fall and then the spring. 

During this time, you will be doing a lot of brushing and line combing to help reduce shedding and remove that loose undercoat. 

brown newfoundland puppy getting a bath

How To Use The Dog Brush In Your Newfoundland

When brushing your Newfie’s coat with a pin brush, you’ll want to use gentle short strokes in the direction that the hair grows. 

Start at your Newfoundland’s head and work down to the shoulders and finish with the legs and the tails.

If you’re working on an adult Newfie, you might want to use grooming spray to help the brush glide through the coat better. 

Grooming sprays we like include:

  • Magic Mist
  • Ice on Ice
  • ProGro
  • Show Sheen

best dog combs

How To Use A Dog Comb

A comb is used for line combing and it works best to remove loose undercoat and it helps to prevent mats from forming. 

You’ll want to lift up the top coat and place the comb on the undercoat and comb down. 

We have a guide on how to line comb that explains this technique in detail. 

woman line combing a newfoundland dog s

Trimming Your Newfoundland’s Coat

If you’ve never trimmed your dog before, it’s best to reach out to a professional dog groomer in your area or reach out to someone in the Newfie community for guidance. 

I always recommend that if you’re new to grooming your Newfie, start with thinning shears and go slow. 

Newfies usually need their ears and paws trimmed the most frequently and these are easy to do once you get comfortable with trimming. 

brown newfie puppy getting a bath outside


Bathing Your Newfoundland

If you’re wondering how often a Newfoundland needs to get a bath, the results will vary. 

Newfies need a bath when they’re dirty and since their coat picks up a lot of things, this is usually about every 6-8 weeks. 

The hardest part about bathing a Newfie is getting their water-resistant coat soaked down to the skin and then drying them.

A lot of Newfie owners will use bathing tools like the EZall Bathing System or something similar. 

These products really help to get the Newfie’s wet and distribute the shampoo without working up a sweat. 

landseer newfoundland getting a bath

The type of shampoo you use will depend on your dog’s coat. 

I use a brightening shampoo for Odin because he has a lot of white that is prone to staining. 

A few popular shampoo products in the Newfie community are:

  • Panagenics
  • iGroom
  • Chris Christensen
  • Mane n’ Tail
  • Cowboy Magic
  • Tropiclean
  • Filthy Beast

Make sure you’re diluting the shampoo according to the directions on the bottle. 

I also like to spritz my Newfies with a vinegar + water spray after I’m done bathing and before I dry. 

It leaves their coat so soft and shiny!

brown newfie being dried with high velocity dog dryer

Drying Your Newfoundland

A high-velocity dog dryer is a must when you have a Newfoundland. 

A wet Newfie is a happy Newfie but a wet Newfie is also prone to hot spots if their coat stays wet for long periods of time.

Hot spots are acute moist dermatitis that can often appear out of the blue and escalate quickly.

They can be painful and quite irritating to a dog which causes them to bite, chew and scratch at the area creating more inflammation.

They are sometimes difficult to get under control because they spread fast.

A good dog dryer not only helps to dry a Newfie’s coat but it can also be used to blow debris, loose hair and dander out of a dry Newfie’s coat. 

Dog dryers vary in price from about $100 to over $600. 

Check out Choosing a Dog Dryer For Your Newfoundland.

Use a Grooming Table

A grooming table is one of the most important grooming supplies that you need and a puppy should be introduced to it as soon as possible. 

Why a grooming table?

A grooming table is a designated place for grooming and the sooner your puppy realizes that the better.

48″ Inch Grooming Table

Grooming a puppy or grown Newfoundland on the floor can be difficult because they associate the floor with naptime or playtime. 

If you don’t want to invest in a grooming table then designate a grooming area.

This can be a separate room or an area of a room in your house or even in the garage or back patio. 

You can use a yoga mat or a cooling pad as the designated area. 

Check out How to Choose a Grooming Table For Your Newfoundland 

If you’re feeling crafty, you can even make your own grooming table for under $100!

Make a Grooming Schedule

Finding time to groom your Newfoundland can sometimes be a challenge with the hustle and bustle of daily life but keep in mind that a Newfie’s coat is not that hard to care for when a regular grooming schedule is followed. 

Instead of randomly grooming when you have a few spare minutes try to set up a grooming schedule.

Try having a designated time and day to do a good grooming. 

I usually use the weekend for grooming!

I always looked forward to this time because it was therapeutic for me and I got to spend quality time with my boys.

newfoundland dog being groomed with a pin brush

Make Grooming Time a Positive Experience 

Since you’ll be spending a lot of time grooming your Newfoundland you want to make sure that they see this time as a good thing. 

Start off slow and increase the amount of time you spend on grooming.

Don’t expect a puppy to sit for an hour for grooming.

Start off at a few minutes and work up. 

Make sure you are offering high-value treats and praise for each successful grooming session. 


Related articles:

Line Combing

Grooming Tools For The Newfoundland 

How To Choose The Best Dog Dryer

How Often Should I Give My Newf a Bath? 




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Susan Kent

Sunday 28th of June 2020

We rescued a Newfie chow chow mix! Personality is awesome! I have read about grooming both breeds......My dogs top coat is long And you have any suggestions on grooming........ thank you, Susan


Monday 29th of June 2020

Hi Susan,

Slicker brush and wide tooth comb would probably work best!


Tuesday 9th of April 2019

Hahaha. Sam sounds like Leroy. I gave him a bath the other day and he was so disgusted with me!


Tuesday 9th of April 2019

Tails Around the Ranch

Sunday 7th of April 2019

Well done! Despite doing a full groom including bath once a month for pet therapy visits, sometimes Sam acts like it's day one. Knuckleheaded dog! Since the day I brought Elsa home I took a brush to her to get her used to it. She doesn't like it one bit and can only handle a few minutes at a time before getting too stressed, but she's getting better. Treats are a godsend.

Ducky's Mom

Friday 5th of April 2019

I wish I had started grooming early with Callie and Shadow; but we live and learn. When/if we get another Golden, I'll definitely start right away. Though I think I'll use a yoga mat instead of a grooming table - I can't see me lifting an 80-pound dog now, never mind when I'm in my 70's. (I pulled a muscle picking Ducky up yesterday and she only weighs 28 pounds.)


Tuesday 9th of April 2019

That is so true. When I had my first Newfie I knew nothing about grooming! I lived and learned and I'm still learning!

I hear you about pulling muscles. I have a shoulder that is throbbing almost every day from helping these guys when they aren't feeling so great! I hope you heal quickly!

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