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Embrace These 8 Traits Or Don’t Get A Newfoundland

There is no doubt that Newfoundlands are one of the most amazing dogs that are on this earth and Newfie owners are a special breed in their own right 

Having one of these dogs requires a level of commitment that isn’t found with most other dog breeds

This commitment starts from the day they enter into our homes and never lessens.

Newfies are one of the most intelligent and loyal breeds and owning one is a lifestyle.

Ask any person who has been blessed with a Newfoundland dog in their life and they will tell you to learn everything you can about this wonderful breed before bringing one into your life. 

black newfoundland dog sitting on the beach


Newfoundland Dog Traits

Newfoundland dogs will vary in personality but there are a few traits that most will share:

  • Intelligence
  • Trainability
  • Loyalty
  • Shedding
  • Drooling
  • Temperament
  • Strength
  • Stubborn


Many people underestimate the intelligence of the Newfie. 

Newfies don’t show off that they’re smart and their intelligence can often be overlooked by their owner. 

This breed learns quickly and understands and enjoys the process of working with its owner.

It should also be noted that the Newfie has been known on many occasions to be smarter than their human. 


2 Newfies wearing cute dog drool bibs

Newfoundlands are easy to train when being trained by someone who gets them. 

They pick things up quickly and are ready to move on to the next challenge.

Training should begin early on as puppies and should continue throughout the life of the dog. 

Training sessions should be kept short and sweet. 

The breed responds best to positive reinforcement and they are eager to please.


brown newfoundland dog getting a bath outside

A Newfie is one of the most loyal breeds that there is.

Newfies are happiest when they are by their owner’s side and they form a strong bond with the entire family.

This is not a breed that will do well living outside alone in a backyard. 

Newfies that are kept from being with their family can easily become destructive and develop behavioral problems

If left alone inside of the house a lot they can also develop separation anxiety or become depressed. 


adolescent stage of newfoundland

It’s common knowledge that a dog with a double coat will shed but many owners are not ready for the amount of hair that will be shed by a Newfoundland. 

Newfies will blow their coat twice a year but shed 24/7 and they require a lot of grooming to maintain their coat. 

They will leave stands of dog hair sprinkled on your couch and dog fur embedded into your carpet if you haven’t ripped it all up yet. 

If you’re not the type of person that can handle dog hair in your butter dish and on your clothes all the time, this might not be the breed for you. 


We talk about drooling a lot here but it’s because not everyone can handle dog drool and we want people to know that it is a trait within the breed. 

Not all Newfies will be leaky faucets but they are going to drool at some point. 

Drinking water, eating, begging-there is going to drool. 

Not everyone will be able to tolerate the drool on their floors, ceilings, and pants. 

Sweet Temperament

lou the brown newfie puppy

“According to the Newfoundland Club of America, “Sweetness of temperament is the hallmark of the breed” and it should not be taken for granted. 

You’ll start with a rambunctious puppy with razor-sharp teeth and a lot of back talking but once the dog matures the sweetness will emerge. 

Most ADULT Newfoundlands are wonderful with children and are often referred to as a nanny dog, but young children should always be taught to respect the dog’s space. 

If you’re looking for a dog to guard your flock or home, that is not the Newfoundland. 


A Newfie is a purposely-bred working dog and they should be able to fulfill this drive. 

They can pull boats to safety due to their strong, unique swimming style and they can haul large loads by cart due to their sound build. 

newfoundland dog swimming as a working dog

They thrive in environments where they are allowed to work and they need an owner that is willing to offer them a lot of training, challenges and the ability to work.

They are wickedly strong and because of this they need to be properly trained or someone, or dog, can get seriously injured. 


A trait often overlooked but very prevalent in many Newfies.

Remember, Newfies are smart and like to please but they can also be stubborn. 

This is where it is sometimes confused that Newfies aren’t smart.

Many times a Newfie will know exactly what he is being asked to do but refuses to do it. 

An example is when your Newf is laying in the middle of the kitchen and you ask him to move. 

Most understand the word move, but they don’t do it because they don’t want to.

They know that if forced, you’ll work around them and then they won’t miss any action that falls on the floor. 

Another example is when you’re out for a casual stroll and all of a sudden your Newf decides that he doesn’t want to walk anymore. 

He plops down and refuses to move. 

You might be there for days waiting for him to be ready.

You might have to call for backup.

Oh, and Newfies always have the last word.

They’re More Than Just a Dog, They’re a Lifestyle

When you’ve owned a Newfie for a while you’ll come across the phrase “A Newfie is more than just a dog, they’re a lifestyle. ” 

Not everyone is prepared to change their lifestyle for a dog and that’s o.k.

This is why you should be honest with yourself when considering adding this breed to your life. 

full grown adult landseer newfoundland dog

Do you have the time to spend training, socializing, exercising and grooming them? 

Do you have a sense of humor? Because you need that. 

Are you willing to change your current lifestyle for your Newfoundland and embrace these traits? 

If so, then maybe you’re ready to be owned by a Newf.


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Darci Lewis

Monday 30th of August 2021

Cody has learned the words Beep Beep and he'll move. lol

Gardner Leighton

Sunday 6th of September 2020

GREAt articles we have two newly and no truer words have been spoken!!


Saturday 9th of May 2020

We got a good laugh over your article because it describes the breed to a t. We have 2 Newfies and 2 Golden Retrievers. The Newfies are always making us laugh with their antics, but boy are they lovable!!! And have you noticed their dog drool is more like glue or slime than drool?


Thursday 7th of April 2022

@Laureen, I had 2 goldens. I went 7 years without a dog after they passed. Mainly because I am a petsitter and have everyone’s dogs to love on. But mostly because I didn’t think any dog out there could come close to being as perfect as my goldens. One of my clients had to rehome their 5 yr old newfie so I was given her. She changed my life forever. Like I couldn’t ever imagine. I love all dogs but I have never been lived before like a newfie loves. She died at 10 and half my heart died with her. I looked at rescue sights for years. One day a friend of my daughters had taken on more than she was prepared for with a newfie puppy and rehomed her to me. Ophelia was 7 months old and I 64. Let me say a 7 month old newfie is ALOT more work than a 5 year old newfie! Wow! Little raptor, like a toddler on crack? but so funny, and loveable like you can’t even imagine. She is the one who has rescued me. Broke my arm chasing a rabbit, but she could’ve broken every limb in my body and I still would never dream of giving her up. My last newf was a runt and came to me at 80 lbs. she was 199lbs when she passed. My current newf is almost 150lbs at 2!? Must LOVE dogs to own a Newfie. They are a lot of work and commitment and the most definitely own you but they will change your life forever! Once you own a newfie you will never want anything else but. Once they turn 2 (females) they start calming down ALOT. Best dog on the planet!


Thursday 7th of May 2020

We don't own a newfie, but our Rottweiler, Eskin, seems to have all these traits! Well, besides the one with A LOT of shedding. Just like newfies, people tend to overlook how intelligent and loyal Rottweilers are. Our dog is the sweetest thing, but... he's also hilariously stubborn.

Stacey Kline

Thursday 23rd of April 2020

Newfoundlands are beautiful and so complex. Thank you for sharing!

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