Old and fabled stories

There are many old and fabled stories about the legendary Newfoundlander breed and their close relationship with seafarers. They were the chosen dog aboard countless naval journeys due to their amazing good nature, loyalty and big stature and feet that allow them to swim distances of up to 3000 meters whilst simultaneously pulling a small boat of people. Newfoundlanders in particular have incredible double-layered coats, which means they can withstand cold water temperatures and their paws are huge and almost web-like which means their swimming abilities are outstanding.

These dogs originated in Canada on the island of Newfoundland, which is also their namesake. But according to the Italian School of Water Rescue Dogs, any dog that has a predisposition to the water and weighs over 30kg can qualify as a water rescue dog, which means that many Labradors and other big, water loving breeds can also make excellent water rescuers.

Water rescue dogs can accomplish incredible feats and can be taught to jump from moving boats, helicopters and into many other dangerous situations that most humans wouldn’t dream of. The Newfoundland breed originally come from an area that is an extremely cold island where they would assist fishermen to pull in their nets. They were essentially working dogs in these far northern realms where temperatures are low and the conditions harsh. Their amazing swimming skills and their willingness to befriend and rescue humans makes them some of natures most amazing and selfless heroes.

water rescue dog pulling a dummy out of the water

Transporting your Newfoundlander

Training and exercise for your Marine Rescue Dog and in particular the Newfoundland breeds is really important. First of all, they love working, especially if they are working together with their owners or partners. Secondly, this is a big breed that has a strong muscular structure that needs to swim, play, run and enjoy being outdoors in order to be in shape for when they need to do their rescue work. This is why regular daily exercise and training will be a part of your daily lifestyle if living with a water rescue dog.

If you have a Newfoundland dog, then your car will need a little extra assistance to keep clean. If you’ve been out walking, playing or swimming as mentioned, then putting your dog into a Siccaro WetDog jacket is the best way to get them dry quickly before going into your home or car. You can keep it on in the car if you want to protect your seats, which can be extremely beneficial.

Sometimes training skills or travel over long distances will be required for you and your K9 water rescuer. If you need to put your Newfoundlander in a crate for transport then it is a great idea to line the crate with a Siccaro FlexDog mat. Newfoundlanders are known to drool a lot also, so this will help catch the mess before it gets onto the car seats. It is the safest and most comfortable way for your dog to travel. Both the FlexDog Mat and WetDog jacket are able to be machine washed at 40 degrees centigrade and machine or air dried afterwards.


Care for Water Rescue Dogs

Whilst most water or marine rescue dogs are Newfoundland, Golden Retriever or Labrador breeds, they can also be other larger size dogs that have good swimming abilities and also have a propensity towards helping their fellow friends. Other K9 varieties can also be trained to have water rescue skills such as German Shepherds. The main breed that we will look at is the Newfoundland, which is a breed predominantly found in colder climates where their thick coat is put to good use.

Because Water Rescue Dogs or Marine dogs are constantly in and out of the water it is important to check them regularly for parasites, especially ticks, fleas and other nasties. The constant wetness can lead to higher than normal occurrence of skin issues such as fungal and bacterial infections. It can also lead to ear infections if there is water in the ears and it is a windy day. By using a high quality dog drying jacket such as the Siccaro Wet dog, you can get a lot of the dampness absorbed quickly and the long neck on the robe means that their ears can be covered and dried quickly also.

In order to avoid all these issues, getting your puppy used to regular grooming is important. By grooming regularly, you can firstly establish and close bond with your dog, ensuring that they are patted and have a lot of positive affection. Secondly, it is a great opportunity to check their ears, clean the outer ear (never the inside ear) and look for redness, skin issues or parasites.


Interested in Siccaro for your rescue dog?

Newfoundland dog wearing Siccaro WetDog drying robe


If you're interested in investing in the best quality equipment for your dog then look no further than the Siccaro wetdog range. Click the button above to see more information about the original Wetdog.

dog in Siccaro WetDog drying robe sticking head out of a vehicle


Wondering how you and your dog can benefit from the Siccaro product range? Then please watch this short video.

Special Care for the Newfoundland Breed

The Newfoundland breed has a hugely long and shaggy coat that is a magnet for dirt and dust, which means a little extra care is required from the owner. Trimming nails and grooming with a good brushing 2-3 times per week is very important, especially because they will shed a lot and this will assist with minimising the amount that is left about your house and car. Give your Newfoundland a bath at least once every one to two months. After a bath, when you are drying them, they can be extremely wet and having a wet, huge dog at home can be a little daunting. In order to dry them with maximum ease and for your dog to feel comfortable in the mean time, we recommend using a Siccaro WetDog drying jacket to absorb the water and protect your home from getting wet. This step is a lot easier than drying them down with numerous towels.

As an owner of this breed, it is important to remember that despite their placid temperament, they still need regular exercise and of course a good deal of attention. This means regular walks outside and when the opportunity arises, letting them have a swim.

This often means a wet and dirty dog at the end of a walk or visit into nature, however if you have a simple, Siccaro WetDog drying jacket then this will not be an issue. Newfoundlanders love children but should never be left alone with them with small kids in case they pull their tails or accidentally knock them over. They have an extremely friendly temperament so getting your kids involved in exercise and games with your Newfoundlander is great for the whole family.

A last note, is about the Newfoundlander and their ability to cope with heat. Generally with such a thick coat, these dogs do not fare well in high temperatures. If you are faced with unusually warm temperatures, it will be necessary to cool your dog down as much as possible. Keep them in air conditioning or in front of a fan and take your dog for regular swims. A new method of cooling for Labradors and Newfoundlanders is to get a Siccaro WetDog jacket and then dampen the jacket in cold water. Squeeze the excess out and then put the damp jacket onto the dog and this will help cool them down naturally as the air surrounding the body becomes naturally colder.

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