The Newfypoo and the Bernedoodle are two of the most popular larger Doodle breeds around today and in this article, we are going to look at the differences and the similarities between them. Many people consider both when looking for a large to giant Doodle (I myself considered both and was lucky enough to find a breeder with both available). If you are in this position hopefully, we can help you to make the right choice for your lifestyle.
Let’s start with the biggest difference. The Newfypoo is a cross between the Newfoundland and the Standard Poodle whereas the Bernedoodle is a cross between the Bernese Mountain Dog and the Standard Poodle. Some breeders do indeed use Miniature Poodles to create Mini Newfypoos and Mini Bernedoodles but we will concentrate on the Standard F1 or first crosses.
The Newfoundland and the Bernese Mountain Dog are quite similar breeds themselves which is why at first glance the Newfypoo and the Bernedoodle appear so similar. The Newfoundland is a giant breed bred to help fishermen and carry out water rescues in his native Canada. The Newfy, as he is affectionately known stands between 60 and 74cm high and weighs between 45 and 70kg on average with many being much heavier.
Newfoundlands come in black, brown, grey, black and white, and brown and white with the particolored varieties being known as Landseers. He is as gentle and sweet-natured as he is huge and despite his size is a low energy dog and only needs to be exercised moderately to stay healthy and happy.
The Bernese Mountain Dog is large rather than giant, standing 58 to 70cm tall and weighing between 36 and 50kg. Originally bred as a general farm dog he hails from the Swiss Alps and is instantly recognizable by his striking tri-colored coat. It is this beautiful coloring that first attracts many to the breed and it is the only color seen in these dogs.
The Bernese Mountain Dog is also famed for his amiable nature and makes a wonderful family pet. The Bernese is a little more energetic than the Newfy and can be slightly shy with strangers making socialization very important while he is still a pup. Although he needs a little more exercise than his cousin the Newfoundland the Bernese is still an easy-going dog who is generally not prone to excitability or boisterousness.
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Newfypoo and Bernedoodle Size Comparison
Now we have looked at the difference between the parent breeds how do the Newfypoo and Bernedoodle compare size-wise? The Newfypoo is a very large Doodle mix with many being big enough to be classed as giant dogs. Reaching heights of between 53 and 74cm (some even taller) and weighing between 35 and 70kg the Newfypoo is one of the largest Doodle mixes around.
The Bernedoodle is very similar height-wise to the Newfypoo usually standing between 50 and 74cm tall but is often a little lighter, weighing on average between 30 and 50kg. However, as with all hybrid dogs, there is no standard size and some individuals will exceed the size of their largest parent. I have seen Bernedoodles that have grown larger than Newfypoos so choosing between them based purely on size could be a mistake.
Is there much difference between these two Doodles color-wise? Well there’s no easy answer to that as this can be influenced greatly by the color of the Poodle parent and we know that Poodles come in a huge variety of colors.
However, the tri-colored coat prized so highly in Bernese Mountain Dogs is rarely seen in Poodles (although it is possible) and never seen in Newfoundlands.
So, if it’s the tri-color tickles your fancy you may well fall in love with a Bernedoodle pup. However, not all Bernedoodles are tri-colored and are commonly seen in solid black, black and white, black and brown (phantom) and even merle and sable.
The Newfypoo can never be tri-colored and is usually black, brown, grey, black and white, or brown and white.
The Newfypoo coat type, as with all crossbreeds can vary but as we are talking about first-generation crosses in this article, he will sport typical Doodle furnishings and will vary from wavy to tighter Poodle type curls.
The Newfypoo is one of the heaviest coated Doodle mixes and as such expect to spend a lot of time grooming. Some Newfypoos have a coarse feeling water repellent coat, my own girl has this coat type, and it dries surprisingly quickly. Others have a softer more Poodle texture that is prone to matting and a little harder to brush. With this in mind, it’s worth noting that many Newfypoo owners have their dogs clipped regularly and keep them a little shorter especially as their love for water is second to none.
Newfypoos are low to non-shedding, apart from the odd tumbleweed although you may get a couple of handfuls of undercoat out when you groom him. Whichever coat type your Newfypoo has he will be high maintenance so expect to spend lots of time grooming your dog and mopping the floor.
The Bernedoodle also has a wavy or curly coat very similar to that of the Newfypoo but tends to be softer to touch as the Bernese Mountain Dog is not bred to work in water. Again, this coat requires lots of grooming and can be prone to matting if you don’t keep on top of it. He should be low to non-shedding depending on how much he takes after his Poodle parent and also needs regular clipping to keep him looking his best.
Temperament is the most important of all aspects when choosing your canine companion. The Newfypoo is known to be gentle, calm, and loving much like his Newfoundland parent. Depending on which parent breed he takes after he can be very chilled and even a little lazy although he will still need a good romp outside every day, my own girl is surprisingly athletic for such a large dog and does enjoy a run off the lead of about an hour per day.
The Newfoundland is often referred to as the ‘Nanny dog’ and Newfypoos get on well with children and other animals and should never be prone to aggression. He can however be stubborn like the Newfoundland and can easily knock small children over unintentionally due to his size so early training is very important.
Friendly and sociable he doesn’t make a great guard dog although his size and deep bark are usually enough to deter intruders.
The Bernedoodle is another friendly, loyal dog and is described by some owners as a little ‘goofy’. He is often slightly more energetic than the Newfypoo and can be boisterous when young so training is vital as he is too large to greet people by jumping up. The Bernedoodle is an intelligent dog, perhaps more so than the Newfypoo, and responds well to training. Bernedoodles can also be a little stubborn as adolescents but this stage tends to pass quickly. He does love to be around his human family as much as possible and can be prone to mischief if he is allowed to become bored. As most Bernedoodles have a little more energy than Newfypoos if you are active and enjoy long walks he could be a perfect choice.
The Newfypoo and the Bernedoodle are both large, fast-growing breeds and correct nutrition especially while growing is essential to keep your dog healthy. Good quality food is a must whether you decide to feed dry, wet, or raw and as puppies grow rapidly you will need to feed your pup 10% of his bodyweight split into four daily meals gradually reducing to 4% split into two meals once he is fully grown.
Some dogs of either breed prefer to graze throughout the day rather than eating large meals in one go. This can actually be a good thing as, like all large, deep-chested dogs, bloat can be a problem for both Newfypoos and Bernedoodles.
We have already touched briefly on the exercise needs of these two wonderful Doodle breeds but a point worth mentioning is that with all large to giant breeds you should limit exercise while your dog is growing.
Both the Newfypoo and the Bernedoodle grow rapidly and carrying such a large body on immature bones and joints can cause problems in later life so stick to the rule of 5 minutes per month of age until your dog becomes an adult. It’s also best to avoid letting him climb stairs or jump on and off furniture or in and out of the car at least while he is young.
Once your dog is fully grown you can be guided by him. As a rule, the Newfypoo will need slightly less exercise than the Bernedoodle to keep him healthy and content but both breeds do need a walk, preferably with some off-lead time daily and access to a garden or yard. Both feel the heat and do enjoy spending lots of time outdoors.
With all dogs, especially large breeds, it is essential to buy only from a breeder who health tests the parents. Hip and elbow dysplasia are common concerns in large dogs although this is not always genetic and can be environmental. This is the reason that taking care not to over-exercise or let your giant Doodle puppy run on slippery surfaces is so important.
Newfypoos can also suffer from cherry eye, a condition where the inner eyelid becomes swollen, red and protruding. This condition requires surgery to correct.
Cystinuria, crystals that form in the urine, is also common in Newfoundlands and can be a problem in Newfypoos too so it is important again that the parents are tested for this condition as it is hereditary. If one parent is a carrier and the other is clear the pups may be carriers but will never be affected by this disease however if two carriers are bred together the pups may actually be affected.
The Bernedoodle is prone to the same joint problems as the Newfypoo with regards to hips, elbows, and eyes. Sadly, the Bernese Mountain Dog is known to have one of the shortest lifespans of all breeds with a great number of dogs being affected by an aggressive form of cancer. This makes it even more important to buy from a reputable breeder who health tests all his dogs and records the average lifespan of dogs in the family line to the best of his ability.
The good news for both Doodle mixes is that the Poodle is known for his longevity and hybrid vigor does mean that a well-bred Doodle can be healthier than a purebred so if you choose carefully your giant Doodle, whichever breed you select, should be with you for many years.