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5 Essential Steps To Bathing Your Newfoundland

Bathing your Newfoundland can seem like a daunting task due to their size and thick fur, but with the right approach, it can be a rewarding bonding experience for both you and your giant bear.

Regular baths are crucial for maintaining your Newfoundland’s coat and overall hygiene.

Here are five important steps to ensure a successful bathing session for you and your Newfie:


Preparing to bathe your Newfoundland includes more than just gathering bath supplies, it also includes preparing the dog’s coat, which is a step that is often overlooked. 

Preparing your Newfie’s coat is important because it makes the bathing process more efficient. 

5 Essential Steps To Bathing Your Newfoundland

Blow Out

Using a high-velocity dog dryer on a dry coat is a great way to blow out loose hair and dander before bathing. 

It also gives you a chance to check the dog’s body for any issues like skin infections, wounds or tangles.

Comb Out

It’s always important to remove any mats or tangles before you wet the coat because they will only get bigger and tighter once wet. 

The best way to do this is by line combing or line brushing the areas that tend to mat frequently on Newfies. 

brown newfoundland dog being combed


Before diving into the bathing process, gather all the necessary supplies to have them within reach.

It never fails that I forget something (it’s usually the cotton balls) and I have to scramble around trying to locate it.

Regular dog bath supplies for a Newfie can include:

  • shampoo + conditioner
  • dog brush or comb
  • hose attachment
  • towels
  • cotton balls (optional way to keep water from getting inside the ear canal)
  • dog dryer
  • treats
  • happy hoodie (if you use one when drying)
  • ear cleaner (optional)

Newfoundland dog shampoo

Choose the Right Shampoo

Selecting the appropriate shampoo is vital for your Newfoundland’s skin and coat health.

Opt for a high-quality dog shampoo specifically formulated for your Newfoundland’s double coat.

The options are endless and will vary based on your dog’s coat and your budget. 

For instance, I use different shampoos for Odin and Lou because they have different coat types.

A few common shampoos used for Newfoundlands are:

  • Chris Christensen 
  • iGroom 
  • Panagenics
  • Mane n’ Tail
  • Cowboy Magic
  • Skout’s Honor
  • Bio-Groom

(most of these brands have several options available so that’s why I didn’t directly link to any of them)

Make sure to dilute the shampoo and conditioner according to the directions. I’ve missed this step before!

Apply the shampoo evenly throughout your Newfoundland’s coat making sure to get to the skin. 

You can use a hose attachment made for dog baths which makes the shampooing and rinsing part a bit easier. 

Pay special attention to areas prone to dirt and odor, such as the chest, chin, underbelly, paws and hocks. (your Newfie’s hocks get dirtier than you think)

Washing The Coat

Thorough Wetting

One of the biggest struggles when giving a Newfoundland a bath is getting their coat wet and then getting it dry. 

Newfies have a dense double coat with the top layer being waterproof. 

There’s also an oily texture to that topcoat

These features make it tough to get the Newfie wet to the skin but it can be done!

Newfoundland dog getting a bath

Thorough Rinsing

After shampooing, it’s crucial to rinse your Newfoundland’s coat thoroughly to remove all traces of shampoo.

Inadequate rinsing can lead to skin irritation and residual product buildup.


Drying your Newfoundland is the longest process of the bath and can take anywhere from 1 to 2 hours depending on your Newfie’s coat.

Once fully rinsed, carefully squeeze out excess water from your dog’s coat, and let them do a few good shakes.

Use several towels to pat your Newfoundland dry, absorbing as much moisture as possible. 

You can use cotton towels, microfiber towels or swimmer towels.

Some Newfie owners also use drying coats

Optional step: spray the coat with a water/white vinegar mixture (equal parts of each) this helps to cut down on odor and leaves the coat nice and shiny.

Now it’s time to finish drying with your high-velocity dog dryer. 

You’ll want to start at the top of your Newfoundland, near their head, and dry down their body. 

brown newfie wearing drying hoodie

If your Newfie doesn’t like the loud sound of the dog dryer, you can use a happy hoodie which also helps to dry the head and ears. 

When drying the bottom part of your Newfie, legs and underbelly, try using a towel to catch some of the water. 

I saw this being done by a groomer on TikTok a few months ago and it works well and helps to cut down on drying time!

brown newfoundland dog after a bath

Post-Bath Care and Brushing

After the bath, it’s essential to pay attention to your Newfoundland’s ears and nails.

Gently dry the ears with a soft towel to prevent moisture buildup, which can lead to ear infections.

You can also use an ear cleaner that has a drying effect such as Epi-Otic.

Trim your dog’s nails if necessary, being cautious not to cut too close to the quick.

Once your Newfoundland is completely dry (if that’s possible), give them a thorough brushing to remove any tangles and distribute natural oils throughout the coat.

Regular brushing not only keeps your dog looking neat but also helps prevent mats and keep the coat healthy.

How Long Does It Take to Give a Newfoundland a Bath?

One of the most frequently asked questions about Newfies is how long it takes to bathe them. 

Obviously, the answer is going to vary but on average it can take anywhere from 2-4 hours from start to finish. 

I only endorse and recommend products that I use or products that are highly recommended by my peers. Please don’t spend money on any of these products unless you believe they are best for you and your Newfoundland. Read our full privacy policy here.

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phyllis johnson

Sunday 12th of May 2024

i would like to see the cooling mats again

Anne Taylor

Tuesday 2nd of April 2024

I love to read anything you write about these beautiful babies. I am so glad I found you! You are straight forward, you get to the point and you let us make our own decisions. This was my first Newfoundland,in fact he might be a little mixed but I wouldn't trade him for anything. I wish I would have found out about this breed sooner,so this will probably be my only one, but it will be such a wonderful ride!THANK YOU, again!

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