How Much Exercise Does a Newfoundland Need?

How much exercise does a Newfoundland need?

Newfoundlands, a breed that originated as working dogs for fishermen in Newfoundland, Canada, are known for their gentle nature and excellent swimming abilities. If you are considering adding one of these sweet-natured giants to your family, it’s important to understand their exercise requirements to ensure their well-being.

Key Takeaways:

  • Average exercise time for an adult Newfoundland is 1 hour per day.
  • Avoid over-exercising Newfoundland puppies and be cautious in warm weather.
  • Mental exercise through games is beneficial for Newfoundlands.
  • Grooming requirements include regular brushing and cleaning around the face and lips.
  • Newfoundlands respond well to calm and balanced training approaches.

The Temperament of Newfoundlands

Newfoundlands are often referred to as gentle giants due to their calm and kind temperament. They are known for their affectionate and patient nature, making them excellent family pets. Whether it’s with their human family or other pets, Newfoundlands are naturally sociable and get along well with everyone.

One of the remarkable qualities of Newfoundlands is their love for children. They are incredibly patient and protective, making them an ideal choice for families with young kids. These gentle giants are known to be watchful over children, ensuring their safety and providing a comforting presence.

When it comes to interacting with other dogs and people, Newfoundlands are usually friendly and welcoming. They have a calm and non-aggressive disposition, which makes them great companions in social settings. Their welcoming nature often extends to strangers, which can be both heartwarming and reassuring.

The Newfoundland’s personality is a combination of their gentle demeanor, loyalty, and intelligence. They are highly trainable and eager to please, making them ideal candidates for obedience training and various dog sports. Their intelligence and willingness to learn make training sessions enjoyable for both the dog and their owner.

To sum it up, the Newfoundland temperament is that of a gentle giant. They are loving, patient, and sociable, making them an ideal addition to any family. Their friendly nature and intelligence contribute to their charm and make them a delightful companion for people of all ages.

Exercise Needs of Newfoundlands

When it comes to exercise, Newfoundlands have specific needs that should be met to keep them healthy and happy. Regular physical activity is important for these gentle giants, but it’s essential to find the right balance to avoid over-exertion. Here’s what you need to know:

Adult Newfoundlands typically require around 1 hour of exercise per day. This can be divided into multiple sessions to ensure they get enough physical activity throughout the day. However, it’s crucial to adapt their exercise routine based on their specific age, health, and individual preferences.

“Exercise is important for Newfoundlands, but you should always consider their age and health when planning their activities.” – Dr. Emma Greenaway, Veterinarian

When it comes to Newfoundland puppies, the exercise approach needs to be more cautious. Puppies have developing bones and joints that are sensitive to excessive strain. Limit their exercise to short and controlled play sessions to prevent potential injuries. Around 15 minutes of exercise for puppies under 6 months of age and gradually increasing to 30 minutes for those between 6 and 12 months is recommended.

Additionally, it’s important to be mindful of the weather conditions while exercising your Newfoundland. These dogs have a dense double coat that makes them more susceptible to heat. Avoid strenuous activities during hot and humid weather, and provide plenty of shade and water breaks to prevent overheating.

Exercise for Newfoundlands isn’t solely about physical activity. Mental stimulation is equally important for these intelligent dogs. Engage them in games that challenge their problem-solving skills, such as puzzle toys, hide-and-seek, or obedience training. This not only keeps them mentally sharp but also helps prevent boredom and destructive behaviors.

Remember, every Newfoundland’s exercise needs may vary slightly, so it’s important to monitor their overall well-being and adjust their exercise routine accordingly. Consult with your veterinarian for personalized advice on the exercise requirements of your beloved Newfoundland.

Benefits of Exercise for Newfoundlands:

  • Improves cardiovascular health
  • Helps maintain a healthy weight to prevent obesity
  • Builds muscle strength and endurance
  • Stimulates mental sharpness and prevents boredom
  • Promotes socialization and bonding with their human and canine companions

Grooming Requirements for Newfoundlands

Newfoundlands, with their dense, water-resistant double coat, require regular grooming to maintain their coat’s health and appearance. Proper grooming not only helps prevent tangling and shedding but also keeps your Newfoundland comfortable and free from skin issues. Here are some essential grooming practices for your furry friend:

Regular Brushing:

Brushing your Newfoundland’s coat at least once or twice a week is crucial in preventing matting and keeping their fur in top condition. Use a slicker brush or a grooming rake to remove loose hair and detangle any knots. Pay extra attention to areas prone to matting, such as behind the ears, the chest, and the underbelly.

Occasional Trimming:

While the Newfoundland’s coat doesn’t require regular trims, some Newfies may need occasional trimming around their faces and lips. This helps prevent excessive drooling and keeps their facial area clean and hygienic. It’s best to consult a professional groomer for precise trimming techniques to maintain your Newfoundland’s distinct look.

Ear Care:

Newfoundlands are prone to ear infections, so it’s essential to check and clean their ears regularly. Use a veterinarian-approved ear cleaning solution and gently wipe the inner part of their ears with a cotton ball or a soft cloth. Be cautious not to insert anything deep into the ear canal to avoid injury.

Tooth Brushing:

Proper dental care is vital for your Newfoundland’s overall health. Regular tooth brushing helps prevent oral issues such as gum disease and bad breath. Use a canine toothbrush and toothpaste specifically formulated for dogs, and gently brush their teeth at least two to three times a week.

By following these grooming practices, you can ensure that your Newfoundland’s coat remains healthy, shiny, and free from mats and tangles. Regular grooming sessions also serve as bonding time with your gentle giant, promoting a strong and loving relationship.

Training a Newfoundland

Training a Newfoundland is a rewarding experience that can help you establish a strong bond with your gentle giant. Whether you have a Newfoundland puppy or an adult dog, consistent training is essential to ensure their obedience and well-being.

Newfoundlands are known for their intelligence and willingness to please, making them relatively easy to train. Starting their training from a young age is beneficial, as it helps them develop good habits early on.

“Newfoundlands respond well to calm and balanced training approaches. Avoid using harsh methods or punishment, as these can hinder their progress. Instead, focus on positive reinforcement techniques and reward them with treats, praise, and affection.”

Establishing boundaries is crucial when training a Newfoundland. Since they are large and powerful dogs, it’s important to teach them not to jump on people or pull on the leash. Consistency and patience are key in reinforcing these behaviors.

Introduce basic commands like sit, stay, and come gradually, using clear and consistent verbal cues paired with hand signals. As Newfoundlands are eager to please, they usually pick up on commands quickly.

It’s also beneficial to socialize your Newfoundland with other dogs, animals, and people. This helps them become more comfortable in various social situations and reduces the risk of aggression or fear-based behaviors.

Remember to keep training sessions short and focused, as Newfoundlands have a tendency to become easily distracted. Training sessions should be enjoyable for both you and your dog, reinforcing the positive bond between you.

With patience, positive reinforcement, and consistency, you can train your Newfoundland to be a well-behaved and obedient companion.

Feeding a Newfoundland

Proper nutrition plays a crucial role in maintaining the health and well-being of your adult Newfoundland. To ensure they receive the necessary nutrients, it is important to feed them a complete and balanced dog food that is specifically formulated for their size and breed.

Monitoring their weight is essential to prevent obesity, which can lead to various health issues. Maintaining a healthy weight is especially important for Newfoundlands, as their large size puts added strain on their joints.

“Feeding your Newfoundland the right amount of food and monitoring their weight is crucial for their overall health and longevity.”

For Newfoundland puppies, feeding should be more frequent and in smaller portions to support their growth. It is important to follow the feeding guidelines provided by the dog food manufacturer and consult with your veterinarian for specific recommendations.

As your Newfoundland grows, it is necessary to gradually transition them from puppy food to adult dog food. This process allows their digestive system to adjust to the new food formulation.

In summary, providing a balanced diet, monitoring their weight, and following feeding guidelines are essential for the health and longevity of your Newfoundland.

Common Health Concerns for Newfoundlands

Newfoundlands, like all dog breeds, are susceptible to certain health issues. It’s important to be aware of these common health problems and take appropriate measures to keep your Newfoundland happy and healthy.

One of the most prevalent health concerns for Newfoundlands is hip and elbow dysplasia. These conditions occur when the hip or elbow joint doesn’t develop properly, leading to pain and mobility issues. Regular vet check-ups and joint evaluations can help identify and manage these conditions early on.

Osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer, is another health issue that Newfoundlands are prone to. It primarily affects large dog breeds and can be highly aggressive. Early detection and prompt treatment are crucial for a better prognosis.

Eye problems can also occur in Newfoundlands, including cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy, and entropion. Routine eye examinations and proper care can help prevent or manage these conditions.

Gastrointestinal issues, such as bloat and gastric torsion, are common concerns for deep-chested breeds like Newfoundlands. These conditions can be life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. Monitoring your Newfoundland’s eating habits and providing them with appropriate meals can help prevent these issues.

Heart disease, including subvalvular aortic stenosis and dilated cardiomyopathy, is another health problem that can affect Newfoundlands. Regular heart screenings and heart-healthy lifestyle choices are essential for managing and preventing these conditions.

“Regular vet check-ups and monitoring your Newfoundland for any signs of discomfort or illness are crucial in maintaining their overall health and well-being.”

Exercise Needs of Newfoundland Puppies

Newfoundland puppies are adorable and full of energy, but it’s important to remember that they are still growing and developing. As such, their exercise needs are different from those of adult Newfoundlands. Over-exercising Newfoundland puppies can put excessive strain on their still-forming joints, potentially leading to long-term health issues. Therefore, it’s crucial to strike a balance between providing them with enough physical activity and ensuring their well-being.

For puppies under 6 months of age, around 15 minutes of exercise per day is sufficient. This can include short walks, gentle play, or supervised interaction with other dogs. As they grow older, between 6 to 12 months, their exercise time can gradually be increased to about 30 minutes per day. This allows them to burn off their excess energy and helps promote muscle development without risking joint problems.

However, exercise alone is not enough. Socialization training is also a vital aspect of a Newfoundland puppy’s development. Starting between 12 and 18 weeks of age, introducing them to different people, animals, and environments helps them become well-rounded and confident adults. This training should be done gradually, taking their age and personality into account.

Factors Affecting Newfoundland Exercise Requirements

When it comes to meeting the exercise needs of your Newfoundland, several factors come into play. Understanding these factors will help you develop an exercise routine that suits your gentle giant’s requirements and ensures their overall well-being.

“Newfoundland’s eating routine should be considered to prevent bloat.”

One important factor to consider is your Newfoundland’s eating routine. These dogs are prone to a condition called bloat, where the stomach twists and can become life-threatening. It’s essential to schedule exercise sessions around their mealtimes to prevent the risk of bloat. Exercise should be avoided for at least an hour before and after meals.

“Hot weather can cause overheating in their thick coats.”

Another factor to keep in mind is hot weather. Newfoundlands have thick double coats that can make them susceptible to overheating in warm temperatures. During hot days, it’s crucial to exercise them during cooler times of the day, provide shade and ample fresh water, and avoid rigorous activities that could lead to heatstroke.

“Walks help release pent-up energy, and resistance training can be beneficial.”

Regular walks are an essential part of a Newfoundland’s exercise routine. Daily walks help release their pent-up energy and keep them physically fit. Additionally, incorporating resistance training, such as pulling weight or using a weighted vest, can provide them with a more challenging workout and strengthen their muscles.

By taking these factors into consideration – their eating routine, hot weather precautions, and walking needs – you can create a customized exercise plan that meets your Newfoundland’s specific requirements and keeps them happy and healthy.

Top 5 Exercise Ideas for Newfoundlands

Newfoundlands are active and playful dogs that require regular exercise to stay healthy and happy. Here are some exercise ideas to keep your Newfoundland engaged and energized:

  1. Swimming:

    Swimming is a favorite activity for Newfoundlands due to their excellent swimming abilities and love for water. It is a low-impact exercise that is gentle on their joints while providing an excellent cardiovascular workout. Find a safe swimming spot and let your Newfoundland enjoy the water. Always supervise them to ensure their safety.

  2. Playing Fetch:

    Playing fetch is a fun and interactive exercise that provides mental and physical stimulation for your Newfoundland. Use a tennis ball or a favorite toy and throw it for your dog to retrieve. This game helps burn off excess energy and strengthens their muscles. Make sure to play in a spacious area where your dog can run freely.

  3. Playdates with Other Dogs:

    Newfoundlands are generally friendly and sociable with other dogs. Organize playdates with other friendly dogs to provide socialization opportunities and promote healthy interactions. Playing with other dogs helps prevent aggression and enhances their social skills. Ensure that the play environment is safe and supervised.

  4. Interactive Toys:

    Interactive toys offer mental stimulation and engage your Newfoundland’s problem-solving skills. Toys that require them to figure out how to reach a treat or solve a puzzle can keep them entertained for hours. These toys help prevent boredom and provide a mental workout for your dog.

  5. Hiking:

    Newfoundlands love exploring the great outdoors, and hiking is a fantastic way to fulfill their exercise needs while enjoying nature. Choose hiking trails suitable for dogs and ensure they are on a sturdy leash. Hiking provides both physical and mental stimulation, making it an excellent exercise option for your Newfoundland.

Remember to adjust the intensity and duration of exercise based on your Newfoundland’s age, health, and fitness level. Regular exercise, along with proper grooming and mental stimulation, contributes to the overall well-being of your gentle giant companion.

When Do Newfoundlands Need Less Exercise Than Average?

As Newfoundlands age, their exercise requirements may decrease due to the effects of aging and potential joint sensitivities. Older Newfoundlands tend to have reduced mobility and may not be as physically capable as when they were younger. It’s important to adjust their exercise routine to accommodate their changing needs and overall health.

Dogs recovering from injuries or living with chronic illnesses may also need less exercise than average. These conditions can affect their stamina and ability to engage in prolonged physical activity. It’s crucial to consult with a veterinarian to determine the appropriate exercise level for a Newfoundland in such circumstances.

Living arrangements and interactions with other dogs can further impact the exercise needs of a Newfoundland. For instance, a Newfoundland that lives in a spacious rural area with ample opportunity to roam and explore may require less structured exercise. On the other hand, a Newfoundland living in an urban environment without access to large open spaces may benefit from structured exercise activities such as long walks or swimming sessions.

Understanding your Newfoundland’s individual needs and limitations is crucial when determining their exercise requirements. Pay attention to any signs of discomfort or fatigue during exercise and adjust accordingly. It’s always better to err on the side of caution and prioritize their well-being.


In conclusion, meeting the exercise needs of your Newfoundland is crucial for their overall well-being. These gentle giants require a moderate amount of physical activity to keep them happy and healthy. However, it’s essential to adjust their exercise routine based on factors such as their age, health condition, and living environment.

Regular exercise not only helps in maintaining a healthy weight but also promotes cardiovascular health and strengthens their muscles and joints. Along with physical activity, mental stimulation through games and training is equally important for their cognitive development and to prevent boredom.

Additionally, proper grooming is an essential aspect of taking care of your Newfoundland. Their thick double coat requires regular brushing to prevent tangling and shedding. Paying attention to their dental hygiene, ear care, and keeping them clean will help keep them looking and feeling their best.

Remember, each Newfoundland is unique, and their exercise requirements may vary. Consulting with a veterinarian and considering individual factors will help you create a tailored exercise plan that suits your Newfoundland’s specific needs. By providing them with the right amount of exercise, mental stimulation, and grooming, you can ensure a happy and healthy life for your beloved gentle giant.

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