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Posted in: Dogs

Do Newfoundland Dogs Shed? Should You Cut Your Doggie’s Coat?

Grooming is an essential part of taking care of your dog. When you get a large, long-haired dog, the thought of combing your pup might seem like a nightmare. But what about Newfoundlands? Do Newfoundland dogs shed or are they suitable for people who want low-maintenance dogs?

Newfoundland is a large working dog breed that originates from Newfoundland, Canada. They are among dogs known as ‘gentle giants’ as they are huge and sometimes even scary-looking but possess a calm, gentle temperament.

They are known as courageous dogs used for water rescue, and they are loyal companions and great family dogs for those who can afford to keep such a huge dog breed. But what about grooming them? Do Newfoundland dogs shed and should you cut their long coat in summer? Here’s what you need to know:

Do Newfoundland Dogs Shed?

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Yes, Newfoundland dogs are relatively high-shedding breed. They possess thick undercoats and fairly longer upper coat. This type of double coat is usually connected with high shedding amounts, and the same can be said for this dog breed, as well.

They shed significantly more in spring and fall, as this is the shedding season during which they ‘blow coats’. In fact, they shed so much that they are in line with Bernese Mountain Dogs and Great Pyrenees, two other large dogs that are known for leaving a hairy mess wherever they go.

Fortunately, the shedding amount is terribly high throughout the year. As they are seasonal shedders, they will only be a struggle to maintain two times a year. Still, they will shed no matter the season, and the shedding amount remains moderate to high. [1]

If you have a young Newfoundland dog, you might wonder: “Do Newfoundland dogs shed?”, as you didn’t notice such a big shedding problem with your pup. This is because the seasonal shedding only begins when your dog becomes an adult, which is usually around three years of age. Until this moment, their coat isn’t fully developed. This leaves you with a few blissful years until the Newfoundland shedding season starts.

The reason behind this huge shedding amount isn’t just in the Newfie’s coat type. The breed’s huge size also plays a part. The bigger the dog, the higher the shedding amount. In other words, even if they didn’t lose as much hair as they do, the amount of cleaning you’d have to do is still bigger than if you were dealing with smaller dog breeds.

Another dog breed that has this same issue is Great Dane. Great Danes are so big that even though they aren’t shedding that much, they still require lots of maintenance. Now imagine what’s it like dealing with a dog with a much thicker and longer coat!

Are Newfies Challenging to Groom?

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Other than wondering do Newfoundland dogs shed, another issue many aspiring dog owners wander about is the grooming requirement.

Newfoundlands have long, coarse upper coat and a soft yet thick undercoat. As they originate from a region with cold climate, their coats had to insulate them and help them keep their body warmth. Not just that, but their coat is waterproof, so if they get wet, they’ll dry almost instantly.[2]

However, this does mean that they require some maintenance. They are not too challenging, but you’ll still have to dedicate a lot of time brushing their coats and making sure it is shiny and healthy.

Due to its type, Newfie’s coat is almost like a dirt magnet! Every single bit of debris will get stuck on it. As such, you’ll have to spend some time making sure they are clean – especially if you allow them to spend more time outdoors than usually.

 

How to Brush Your Newfie?

Newfoundland matter fur is challenging to deal with without having to cut the entire portion of the coat. As such, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. The best way to prevent matted fur is to brush your Newfoundland at least once every day.

Your best choice would be to brush them with a wire slicker brush to detangle all the long, outer coat. This type of brush is strong enough to do all the heavy lifting and remove dead hairs from the coat. Next, you should use some de-shedding tool that can reach the undercoat and remove any loose hairs. The more hairs you remove this way, the less you’ll have to clean afterwards.

How to Reduce Newfoundland Shedding Amounts?

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The only entirely effective way to reduce a healthy Newfie’s shedding amount is to brush your pooch every single day in a proper way. Brushing will remove any dead hairs before they fall off and create a mess. Not just that, but it will ensure your dog’s coat and skin are healthy and good-looking.

This is because brushing helps distribute coat oils, and this can help moisturize and hydrate his skin. As dry skin is a common reason behind excessive shedding, the healthiest the skin the less his coat will shed.[3]

However, when you brush your Newfoundland, remember to brush all the way to his undercoat. Sure, brushing the outer coat will help, but the only way to remove the entirety of loose hairs is to brush all the way into his undercoat. This is especially the case in the shedding season, when he’ll lose more hairs than normally.

Brushing, however, isn’t the only way to reduce shedding. There are a few more things you can do. This includes:

  • Feeding your Newfie a proper diet. A balanced diet, full of omega 3 fatty acids, can ensure your dog’s skin isn’t dry and that his coat is healthy and shiny. When the coat is healthy, it won’t fall off in large amounts. You might also add coconut oil or fish oil into your pup’s diet. However, make sure to check with your vet before you make any changes into the type of food you’re feeding your pup.[4]
  • Don’t over-bathe your dog. It is recommended that you bathe your Newfoundland once every few months, but it’s okay even if you bathe him monthly. However, if you bathe him more often than that, you’re risking drying out his skin, and this can lead to hairs falling off.
  • Use high-quality dog shampoo. Don’t ever bathe your dog with a shampoo made for humans. Also, make sure the dog shampoo is as natural as possible. Harsh chemicals can harm your dog’s sensitive skin.

Are Newfoundlands Hypoallergenic?

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Next to “Do Newfoundland dogs shed?”, “Are Newfoundlands hypoallergenic?” is another common question. But to understand this, it’s important to first dissect what does hypoallergenic mean.

Hypoallergenic is a word we see plastered all over various products, such as make-up, food, or shampoos. It means that the product in question doesn’t contain any chemicals that are known to cause allergies in sensitive individuals. The same word is used to describe dogs that are suitable for people with dog allergies. However, there is a catch.

Most people think that they are having issues with dog hair. This isn’t exactly the case. What’s really causing issue are proteins found in dog’s saliva, urine, and dander (dead skin flakes). All dogs produce these three. This means that you cannot find a truly hypoallergenic dog.

However, dander, the most common allergen, gets stuck on dead hair and this is how it spreads around. This is also why most people have issues with dog hair – it has dander everywhere on it. As such, dogs that don’t have excessively dry skin and dogs that don’t shed a lot won’t spread dander around as dogs that are large shedders do.

Unfortunately, Newfoundland dogs shed – a lot. They are also prone to dry skin, especially if they spend a lot of time indoors. As such, they are not the best choice for people with dog allergies. However, you might consider checking out Newfypoos – a crossbreed of Poodle and Newfoundland. As this mixed breed dog contains genes of Poodles, dog breed known for being as close to hypoallergenic as possible, it will usually shed less than purebred Newfie. As such, it will be more friendly toward people with dog allergies.

Newfoundland Grooming Styles

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Whether you choose to take your Newfie to a professional groomer or if you decide to style his coat by yourself, you have probably thought of giving your doggie a unique hairstyle at least once. Even if your dog doesn’t participate in dog shows, there is no reason why you shouldn’t have some fun and make your pup look as pretty as possible.

If you want to do this the proper way, don’t style and groom your pup while his coat is wet. Blow-drying can be helpful, but it isn’t the only way to make sure your pooch looks styled. Wait until he’s entirely dry. In fact, you’ll get the best results if you wait until tomorrow.

Before grooming, comb his coat thoroughly. This will help untangle his fur, and it will also help lower the shedding amount in the next period of time. If you don’t know how to cut a Newfoundland with clippers, regular grooming scissors will do.

Here are a few tips if you’re doing this on your own:

  • Make sure your dog retains his natural appearance – at least if you want to take him to a dog show. If you’re grooming him just for fun, you can go for it and style his coat in any way you’d like!
  • Don’t forget trimming Newfoundland feet! This can not just give your pup a prettier appearance, but it will also make sure his feet are healthy.
  • Sometimes, evening out the feathering is all it takes to give your Newfie a neat appearance.
  • Always cut in the direction of hair growth to give his coat natural layers.
  • Don’t trim his tail. Newfoundlands already have a pretty neat tail, and there is no need to cut his coat on this body part.
  • Don’t forget to cut the coat behind his ears, as this is where hairs tend to be longer, which will ruin his head shape.
  • Don’t cut too much hair at once! You can always go back and cut some more, but it will take a while for a hair to grow back.
  • Comb him thoroughly once you’ve completed your grooming session. This will help you make sure everything looks nice and neat.

Should You Cut Your Newfoundland’s Coat?

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Most Newfie owners have thought about giving their Newfoundland summer cut at least once. When you look at a long-haired dog when it’s hot outside, you probably think you should cut his coat short, or even shave it all off. Is this something you should be doing?

When it comes to cutting his coat short, this might be helpful to an extent during summer. Keep in mind that we’re talking about cutting his coat, not shaving it off. Here are some reasons why you might want to keep his coat short:

  • It will make it easier to detect any parasites, such as ticks or fleas.[5]
  • It will make it seem as if your dog isn’t shedding as much, as all loose hairs will be shorter.
  • Maintaining your dog’s coat will be easier and quicker.
  • Your dog might feel a bit better in the summer heat.

However, you should never shave your Newfoundland or cut his coat to be shorter than an inch. This is why:

  • Double coats serve for insulation. Not only do they keep dogs from freezing, they also make sure they are cool enough in summer.
  • Your dog will be more exposed to ticks.
  • If you shave them off to less than an inch length, you’ll expose your pup to sun rays.

As such, we would never recommend cutting your Newfie’s coat too short, let alone shaving it off. Nature has a reason why it designed Newfoundlands with a thick double coat. It is wise to let them be.

So, do Newfoundland dogs shed?

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Here are a few things we can conclude:

Newfoundlands are dogs that shed a lot, especially during shedding season. This also means they are a bad choice for people with dog allergies, as their hairs will fly everywhere, spreading dander around your house, clothes, and furniture. If you decide to buy a Newfoundland, prepare yourself for some heavy-duty cleaning most of the time.

Fortunately, they are rather easy to groom as they don’t require complicated hair cuts or frequent bathing. All you need to do is make sure their coat is tidy and to brush them daily to prevent mats and tangles. You might also take them to a groomer every few weeks if you feel like you cannot groom your pup properly.

If you ignore the shedding amount, Newfies make amazing pets – as long as you have a large backyard where they can spend a lot of time running around. They are gentle giants that can learn to be good even around small kids. Don’t let some brushing keep you from becoming a owner to this amazing dog breed!

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