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10 Important Things To Teach Your Newfoundland Puppy

Set your Newfoundland puppy up for success from the day that you bring him or her home by using positive and consistent training techniques. 

When you first bring your Newfoundland puppy home it’s hard to stop staring at this giant ball of fluff that is cute as can be. 

You know that in a blink of an eye they are going to be out of that cute puppy stage and into the terrible teens so you savor each and every second.

However, it’s important that you start training and weed out their bad habits as soon as possible or you’re going to have some really BIG issues later on. 

Here are a few of the most important things that you should be teaching your new puppy from day 1. 

black and landseer newfoundland puppies

Potty Training Your Newfoundland Puppy

Your puppy is going to have accidents but it’s important that as you get to know your puppy that you keep those accidents limited. 

It’s important to start immediately showing your puppy where he should be eliminating. 

If you have another dog, sometimes this is an easier process because monkey see, monkey do but you’ll still need to play an important role with rewarding him when he does his business outside where he’s supposed to. 

If your Newfie puppy is taking too much time exploring the yard rather than eliminating you can try hooking them up to a leash and guiding him to a specific area to pee or poop. Once he eliminates in that spot, keep taking him there but also make sure that you change up the spot too!

Using a crate or confining to one small area will be helpful for long periods of time such as overnight or when you are at work or running errands. 

How long will it take for your Newfie puppy to be housetrained?

That varies from dog to do but consistency should help narrow the amount of time down.

black newfoundland puppy with white spot on chest

Prevent Separation Anxiety

Newfies are always happiest when they are with their family so they are a breed that can have issues with separation anxiety. 

Start early leaving your puppy home alone, even if it’s just for 5-10 minutes to start. 

Place them in a crate or safe confined area with a favorite toy or treat and leave without making a fuss. 

When you return, try to be calm as you greet them again. 

If you work from home you can still work on this simply by putting your puppy in a crate or exercise pen in a separate room.

Believe me, it will be a lot easier to teach this now than to have a 150-pound dog that is tearing the house up, barking or scratching at the door while you’re away. 

Teach Your Newfie Puppy Good Grooming Manners

I have said this 100 times before and I’ll say it another 100 times, your Newfie needs to be comfortable with grooming and you need to start that as young as possible even if they don’t need it. 

Newfies are a high maintenance breed when it comes to being groomed and they need to be groomed often. 

Your puppy isn’t shedding yet but they still should be brushed and combed daily so that they are comfortable with it. 

You should be gently handling their paws, ears, and tail a lot too.

And even if you plan on taking your Newf to a professional dog groomer, you should get them comfortable on a grooming table right away. 

My puppies/dogs have always been introduced to the grooming table and dog dryer the first day that they came home. 

brown newfie puppy

Puppy Meets The Dog Ramp

Your Newfie puppy doesn’t need a dog ramp to get in the car right now because you can lift them but that’s not going to last long. 

A Newfie puppy should be taught to use a dog ramp or stairs as soon as possible because when they’re 7 years old and need a ramp because they can no longer get in the car, they are not going to want to do it. 

Not to mention a growing giant breed dog should not be taking the impact that they get when jumping out of a vehicle. 

Start early with the ramp or the stairs so you and them don’t have to worry about it in the future. 

Wearing a Leash or Harness 

It’s crazy the number of people that have issues walking their Newfoundland and I can understand why.

We are told not to walk Newfoundland puppies too much until their growth plates are closed which is normally around 2 years of age.

However, Newfie puppies can still walk in a controlled environment.

What that means is that you want to avoid any constant jarring of their joints so controlled walks and walks that are on soft surfaces are fine. 

And walks that are short-5 minutes to start.

They don’t need much more than that.

You just want them to learn early to walk nicely on a leash. 

Yes, they’re going to pull at first, they’re a puppy.

You need to find a consistent way to not get them to pull and stick with it. 

I’m not going to go over leash pulling right now because that’s a subject for a different day and one that a professional trainer should help you with but if you’re introducing a leash, collar and short walks from the getgo, you may avoid bad leash manners in the future. 

landseer newfoundland puppy sitting

Resource and Food Guarding

A lot of people are surprised when they have a Newfoundland puppy that displays resource guarding but any dog can have this behavior so you should watch carefully for it and eliminate it as soon as possible. 

Hand-feeding food and giving treats with training will help your puppy associate food with positive things such as people and food=good. 

Also, instead of ripping a toy or object away from them, instead, try trading them for something better. 

If there’s another dog in the home that resource guards, that issue should be resolved before bringing a new dog into the home. 

Appropriate Chew Toy Training 

Chew items are not only your puppy’s friend but also your friend.

Puppies need to chew and they should be given appropriate chew toys so that they’re not chewing on your couch or kitchen chairs.

Make sure that you provide your Newfie puppy with a variety of safe dog chews and toys and always make sure to monitor them.

Chewing will help to dull the pain of teething puppies plus it keeps them busy. 

black newfoundland puppy swimming

Teach Your Newfie Puppy Not To Bite

This is another normal puppy behavior that people seem to be surprised at when they get a Newfoundland puppy. 

All puppies bite and it hurts!

Start on day one to let your pup know puppy biting is not OK to do.

If your puppy is in a biting frenzy, stop and walk away.

Come back in a few seconds and resume play and if he bites again, walk away.

You want your dog to learn that the fun stops when he bites!

One training tool that I always love to use is the Pet Corrector. It releases a small burst of air and it’s never failed for me. 

I use the burst of air and “No biting!” in conjunction. For me, it’s usually only taken a few bursts for them to stop the unwanted behavior. 


No matter what, your Newfie puppy is going to be the talk of the neighborhood from the day that you bring them home until they are a full-grown bear. 

People are always going to want to stop and pet your Newf, take a picture and ask you at least 12 questions. 

They need to learn early so when your puppy has all their required vaccines, start exposing them to new sites, sounds and smells. 

I’ve always had good luck going to the park and sitting in a safe but busy area near a bike path. 

I bring plenty of treats and water and the puppy is exposed to bikes, runners, other dogs, people and all kinds of good smells. 

Take note of things that your puppy doesn’t seem comfortable with so you can work on that in the future. 

Don’t Skip The Obedience Training

There is no such thing as a dog having too much training and it’s always best to learn from a professional, positive dog trainer.

Not only should your puppy be learning the basic commands of sit, down, stay, heel and leave it but they should have a great recall.

Formal training is always the best way to go and will pay for itself in the years to come. 

If all this sounds like a lot, it is. 

Raising a Newfoundland puppy isn’t and shouldn’t be easy.

A lot of work and training goes into having a well-rounded and trained Newfoundland but I can promise you, it is always worth the time and effort. 


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Monday 17th of May 2021

So when my now one year old was little he was allowed to greet every dog he saw. Huge mistake! I now have a 150lb toddler that I’m having to retrain to walk past dogs. In fact he’s hard to take anywhere because he’s overly friendly ? I’ve learned if we get another newf to teach this early!!

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