Newfoundland is a breed of dog with a thick coat and excellent swimming abilities, making it a popular choice for search and rescue teams.
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Origin of the Newfoundland Dog
The Newfoundland dog originates in the coastal region of Newfoundland, which is located in eastern Canada. In the 19th century, English settlers migrated to this land. When they moved, they brought along their giant mastiff dogs. Over time, the local wolf-like dogs and the giant Tibetan Mastiffs combined, giving birth to the Newfoundland dog – one of the most useful dog breeds in the world.
After crossing the Atlantic, English traders introduced the Newfoundland dog to Europe. However, after the outbreak of World War I and World War II, this breed became scarce in Europe.
Newfoundland is situated in the Northern Hemisphere and is incredibly cold-resistant. These dogs are capable swimmers, even under icy conditions. They excel at moving gracefully on various terrains on land and water. Residents frequently used them for sled pulling, snow transport, or sea rescues.
Physical Characteristics of the Newfoundland Dog
Many people often mistake Newfoundland dogs for Tibetan Mastiffs because they may look similar. However, a closer look reveals the distinct differences between them. Newfoundland dogs have some unique characteristics.
Regarding body size, Newfoundland dogs are considered giant breeds, with their height being approximately double that of other average dog breeds. Males typically reach around 69 cm, while females are slightly smaller, at about 75 cm. In addition to their height, Newfoundland dogs are quite heavy, ranging from 45 to 54 kg. These dogs possess strong and muscular bodies, complemented by a dense and lush coat, which makes them appear as giant, green giants.
Their fur stands out as a unique feature. Unlike other dog breeds like Basenjis, Newfoundland dogs have a thick, fluffy coat that flows like the Tibetan Mastiff’s. The fur comprises two layers, with the inner layer being a soft, fine, insulating coat that allows it to withstand the cold and keep warm in the Canadian climate. The outer layer serves for aesthetics, thick and hairy, giving them a majestic appearance. An exciting feature of the Newfoundland dog’s coat is its water-resistant quality, so they are often referred to as rescue dogs. Their fur allows them to float on water like a mobile lifebuoy.
Their coat color is usually uniform, lacking spots or mixed colors on other body parts. Prominent color options for this breed are black, brown, and gray. Some white fur may be present on their paws, chest, or tail tips.
Newfoundland dogs have large, sturdy legs, making navigating muddy terrain and beaches easy. They have a broad head, wide nose, thick neck, and robust bone structure – all of which are common characteristics of Mastiff-type dogs, including St. Bernards, Tibetan Mastiffs, and English Mastiffs.
These dogs are exceptionally healthy and skilled swimmers, thanks to their tails acting like a rudder, helping them maintain balance and move efficiently in water. Their webbed feet are a notable adaptation for easy swimming in turbulent waters.
Personality Traits of the Newfoundland Dog
If you own a Newfoundland dog, you’ll quickly appreciate their amiable and affectionate nature. Despite their imposing size, these dogs are known for their calm, gentle, and loving temperament. They are highly intelligent, easy to train, and incredibly loyal to their owners. They have a keen sense of smell, allowing them to detect threats and dangerous situations. While they are protective of their families, they are also friendly towards strangers they perceive as well-intentioned.
Newfoundland dogs are especially good with children and have a naturally gentle and protective disposition towards them. They are often described as a “gentle giant” and are known for being excellent with kids. Their sensitivity to the tone of human language and their ability to understand their owner’s thoughts make them trainable, even for those with limited dog training experience.
Newfoundland dogs enjoy playfulness and swimming in the water, so they require space to satisfy their preferences.
Caring for a Newfoundland Dog
Caring for a Newfoundland dog can be challenging due to their size and specific needs. To keep them healthy and agile, you should consider the following points:
Newfoundland dogs are large and thrive in spacious and well-ventilated environments, such as a garden. It’s ideal if you have a pond or pool for them to play in, as they love being in the water. These dogs do not tolerate high temperatures well, so you should provide shade and plenty of water to keep them cool during hot weather. While the climate in Vietnam may not be suitable for them, if you decide to own one, ensure they have a comfortable living space.
Their thick, insulating coat, designed for the cold Canadian climate, can make them uncomfortable in the relatively hot climate of Vietnam. Therefore, keeping them in a cool and well-ventilated environment is essential. Limit their time outdoors and ensure they have regular opportunities to cool off with baths. Trimming their fur is essential to prevent overheating during the summer.
Healthcare: Despite being a generally healthy breed, Newfoundland dogs can be prone to certain health issues. They are particularly sensitive to heat, and conditions like bloat or gastric torsion are concerns. These dogs are also sensitive to anesthesia, so any medical procedures should be carefully managed. It’s crucial to provide them with regular vaccinations, including deworming, and protect them from common dog illnesses like rabies.
Opt for lean meats such as chicken, beef, and duck, as Newfoundland dogs tend to be susceptible to obesity and other health problems if they consume too much fat. Avoid excessive fatty foods as they can lead to obesity, high cholesterol, and related health issues. Additionally, fiber and vitamins from vegetables and fruits are added to maintain their digestive health.
In addition to their basic diet, you may consider adding supplements like oats and imported milk to provide comprehensive nutrition for your Newfoundland dog.
Newfoundland Dog Price
The cost of a Newfoundland dog varies depending on factors such as age, lineage, and the source of acquisition. Adoption from shelters or rescue organizations typically ranges from $50 to $300.
If you opt for a Newfoundland puppy from a reputable breeder, prices can range from $1,000 to $3,000, with show-quality puppies costing $3,000 to $5,000 or more.
Considering ongoing expenses like food, grooming, vet care, and training is important. When purchasing a Newfoundland, choosing a responsible breeder is crucial, as they prioritize the health and well-being of their dogs. Alternatively, consider adoption, which provides a loving home and is often more budget-friendly.