Newfoundland dogs originate from – well – Newfoundland, and there is a lot more to this breed than just being really big. At 28 inches, and weighing 130-150 pounds, this breed was used to pull nets for fishermen and haul lumber from the forest. But they are not just big in size. They are loyal, hardworking, and well suited to work on both land and water. They are also very sweet in nature and make a wonderful family companion.
Here are a few things that you probably didn’t know about Newfoundlands:
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#7 They are called ‘Nanny Dogs’
Renowned for their sweetness and devotion Newfoundlands are perfect family companions. Gentleness is a trademark characteristic and they are often dubbed as ‘Nanny Dog’ because of their special affinity towards children.
#6 They are Protective of the ones they love
Newfoundlands are sweet-natured but they can be very protective of the ones they love. They are not good watch dogs and are generally friendly towards strangers. However, they will retaliate if the ones they are protecting comes under threat.
#5 They are excellent swimmers
Newfoundlands are physically gifted with broad chests, webbed feet and big lung capacity which makes them excellent water dogs. Their fur is double coated and they can swim for long distances. They are capable of pulling drowning victims to shore which is why they are known as lifesaver dogs.
#4 They are suitable for heavy work
Not only in water, the Newfoundlands are also very capable on land. In their homeland – Newfoundland – they are used to haul wood, pull carts and nets for the fishermen and other heavy-duty work. They are also very skilled in dog sports such as tracking, carting, drafting.
#3 They need regular exercise
Newfoundlands are very docile but they are monsters when it comes to exercise. We bet you’ll fall over from exhaustion before a Newf even start panting.
#2 They drool and shed a lot!
If you’re planning to take a Newfoundland home, you’ll need a lot of prep work. Besides the usual shindig, you definitely need a big space so that the dog can move around comfortably. They also drool a lot, so keep a rag in your reach and expect a lot of shedding too!
#1 Newfoundlands are famous!
Throughout time, you will see Newfoundlands with various historical personalities. ‘Seaman’ a Newf accompanied Lewis and Clarke on their journey. Meriwether Lewis wrote in his journal – “May 29, 1805: last night we were all alarmed by a large buffalo bull, when he came near the tent, my dog saved us by causing him to change his course.”
Lord Byron wrote an epitaph to ‘Boatswain’ his Newfoundland. Three US Presidents had Newfoundlands including Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford Hayes, and James Buchanan. ‘Carlo’ – another Newf accompanied Emily Dickinson his entire life. She only had that one dog.
Finally, yet importantly, ‘Swansea Jack’ the Newf named “Dog of the Century” in his homeland of Wales was said to have saved about 23-27 people from drowning.
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