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7 Lessons I’ve Learned Raising a Newfie Puppy Over The Past 30 Days

Last weekend my husband turned to me (after cleaning up a river of pee) and said, “Wow. I forgot how exhausting Newfie puppies were.”

“I. KNOW, RIGHT?!” Was my response in between yawns.

While it was many years ago when Sherman and Leroy were puppies and I’ve blocked out some of it, I know it was exhausting and I know that’s why I haven’t gotten a puppy before this. 

I don’t care what anyone says, raising a Newfie puppy is different than raising another breed of puppy.

I mean Finn was a puppy this time last year and I don’t remember anyone saying how exhausting HE WAS.

Maybe it’s the size of a Newfie puppy or because I’m familiar with the breed.

lou the brown newfoundland

I’ve been there, done that and know what could go wrong but also what could go right.

Maybe I’m just a paranoid freak.

Whatever it is, here are few important lessons I’ve learned over the last 30+ days with Lou:

I Need More Towels 

Newfie puppies are wet, a lot.

They sure do love their water bowls.

They like to drink from it, sleep in it and play in it. 

12 week old brown newfie puppy sitting

And even though I have a hefty stack of dog towels, I did not have enough to dry Lou every 30 minutes. 

I didn’t have enough paper towels, even with the triple roll 6 pack of Bounty. 

It just wasn’t enough.

Newfie Puppies Pee So Much

What goes in must come out and my goodness, it’s a lot of pee.

And since Lou is a pee-walker he doesn’t just stand and pee a lake, he walks and pees a river from the kitchen, through the family room and into the bedroom. 

brown newfoundland puppy

Between the pee and water, I’m surprised that our house hasn’t flooded. 

I feel like the NORMAL puppy potty training rules don’t apply to Newfoundland puppies because they pee whenever they move. 

Newfoundland Puppies Try To Self Destruct

I’ve never seen a breed try to self-destruct as much as a Newfie puppy. 

There’s a reason why they shouldn’t be on furniture when they’re puppies, it’s because they believe they can fly. 

But they don’t even have to be on furniture!

4 month old newfoundland puppy

The other day Lou came running around the corner, tried to leap over Odin, and landed flat on his face. 

I couldn’t have predicted that was going to happen even if I was physic. 

It’s Important to Watch and Encourage Their Instincts.

This is something that I didn’t do a great job of when raising Sherman and Leroy and I wish I had, but in fairness, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was looking for back then. 

Newfies are a working breed and if they show that working drive, you should go with it.

Lou has a strong “hold and carry” instinct and I picked up on it quickly so now it’s encouraged.

16 week old brown newfounland puppy with Jolly ball

I’m trying to get as many things as I can that he can safely carry, and have them easily available to him. 

His favorite thing to carry right now is his Jolly Ball and a bucket of water. 

But I think Lou is going to want to work and be in the water!

Puppies Are Super Impressionable

A puppy from the age of 6 to 16 weeks is highly impressionable and they go through many stages of development that can give them good and bad behaviors.

When you have other dogs in the home that have good and bad behaviors, this can be good and bad.

I have watched Lou watch Odin like hawk and pick up on some things that he does very quickly. 

Barking when outside is one of those things. 

brown newfie puppy with chew toy

At night, Odin will run the perimeter of the yard and if he senses anything he will bark. 

The first time he did this, Lou just sat back and watched but now, as soon as Odin barks back in the corner of the yard, Lou is right there. 

It’s immediate.

Lou could be facing the other direction but if Odin barks, Lou immediately barks, then turns and moves towards Odin. 

I’m ok with this behavior. 

However, he has picked up some non-desirable behaviors from Finn, such as a little resource guarding of toys.

I tried to get all of Finn’s bad behaviors corrected before Lou came.

lou the brown newfie puppy

I was successful with the aggressive barking at the vacuum, the biting of the mop and his unhealthy obsession with the lawnmower but the resource guarding of the toys is still a work in progress.

Lou has picked up on a little of the resource guarding but I feel I’ve done a good job of nipping it in the bud.

This is a tough age because Newfie puppies are adorable and some of their bad behaviors are seen as cute.

However, I always remind myself that if I don’t want a 150-pound dog doing it, then I don’t want Lou doing it now.

Putting my time and energy into your Lou during these crucial weeks will have a huge payoff for the rest of his life. 

It’s Not All Puppies and Rainbows

Don’t get me wrong, I love Lou with all my heart and wouldn’t trade him or the puppy years for anything but it’s not always a great time. 

There’s a lot of stress and anxiety that comes with a Newfoundland puppy. 

And it’s a learning experience, no matter how long you’ve had Newfies or been involved with the breed. 

For this reason, it’s important to have a network of friends that you can reach out to.

brown newfoundland puppy

I’m very blessed that over the year I’ve made lifelong friends in the Newfie community through social media.

I’m also blessed that a small group of these wonderful people are currently raising a Newfie puppy. 

We’ve been able to chat here and there, vent and share experiences and it’s just a great feeling and boost to know that you’re not the only one having struggles.

You know who you are! Thank you for listening! 

Newfies Steal Your Heart-FAST

I’m not going to lie, my heart is a little guarded and scared but there’s no denying how fast Lou has stolen it. 

Gosh, he just wormed his way in there with his cute fluffy face and silly antics. 

I’m in love and I don’t care who knows it! (name that movie)

On one side, I want Lou to stay a puppy forever but on the other side, I’m so excited for the Newfie he’s going to be. 

Lastly, I’ve learned that there is no book, person or video that is going to have all the information that I need to raise a happy and healthy Lou, because every single Newfoundland is different. 

What some of these things can give me are resources that I can use to help guide us throughout Lou’s life. 

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Tammy Baker

Monday 27th of September 2021

I am raising my first Newfie also, Fiona is six months. She has a sister Belgium Malinois Khali. We unfortunately lost her to be sister Piper (Rottweiler) a month before we picked her up so she has helped heal my heart. I’ve had GSD’s, miniature Schnauzers, the Rottweiler and Mal. I’ve gotta say the Newfie is much easier than the Mal. They have soooo much energy from the start! They are Velcro dogs meaning you are their world. Fiona has been very independent from day one and doesn’t need three hours of running per day! The GSD’s, Rottweiler and Mal have taught me an awful lot about very early training and control so I don’t find her to be a huge challenge! Although the stubbornness is kicking in and she is put in ‘place’ more often now! She is wonderful though and I am so glad I chose a Newfie!


Tuesday 28th of September 2021

I bet! From what I've read a Mal is definitely not for everyone and I can see them being a lot more challenging than a Newfie!

Joan Paccione

Saturday 28th of August 2021

I love “Baby Lou”. His adorable innocent face makes him irresistible. I agree , certain behavior have to be redirected as they will not be acceptable for a 150 lb make Newfie . My 3 y/o make Newfie ( Bogart) will often just react because his 6 y/o sister ( Abby) barks or sees something- I know Bogie didn’t see anything and he barks or if on a walk will just lurch towards the direction! Bogie is 3 y/o - he is Always wet!!! We love Odin , Finn and Lou ! I hope he enjoys swimming to work on water rescue - Bogie loves it - unfortunately our lessons were put on hold and hoping to start again in September??❤️?


Thursday 26th of August 2021

Thanks for this! This is our first Newfie. We have raised Dobermans and Mastiffs. But we were unprepared for this puppy. She is completely different and a whole lot more work than our other dogs ever were. Through your articles we now have a better understanding of this beautiful breed.


Friday 6th of August 2021

In sept Max will be 17 months and he’s getting a girlfriend, she’ll be 8 weeks. I’m already wondering how I’m going to do this? Like I think he’ll trample her? Sleep? All of it!! What was I thinking ?

faithanne flesher

Saturday 31st of July 2021

Great words!I have 2 newfs(duncan and sam).They are both 8 yrs old and I'm ready for a puppy so that he can learn the good behaviors of these two guys.I cared for a friend's newf.I found that 3 is a bit easier than 2! They seem to form a pack and arent as insistent about each getting my constant attention.Aren't they just the best breed?


Saturday 31st of July 2021

Ohhhhh, 3 would be a dream! They are the VERY best breed in my opinion :)

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