Newfoundland Dog Names: Best Names for a Gentle Giant

Three Newfoundland Dog and Puppies
Written by David Jones

Newfoundland dogs—fondly shortened to Newfs or Newfies—are a large dog breed that originated in Canada. They are big, cuddly, sweet, and loyal. However, some people find their size intimidating, which is probably one of the reasons why people have a hard time finding good names for them. We have a few ideas on how to find good Newfoundland dog names that could fit your gentle giant nicely.

As a dog breed, Newfies are intelligent, strong, calm, and loyal. They excel in water rescue or lifesaving thanks to their muscular build, thick double coat, webbed feet, and outstanding swimming abilities. Their musculature makes it easy for them to power through ocean waves and powerful tides.

This is why when giving your Newfie a name, you should choose one that sounds strong, so it reflects their characteristics and abilities, yet gentle so people won’t be intimidated by their big size. A name like that is quite a tall order, but don’t worry because we’re well prepared to fulfill it.

Side view of a brown Newfoundland Dog

Not all of us have a collection of names ready for our future best friends. If you’re having problems naming your Newfie, don’t worry because we’re sure you’ll find something that shows off your dog’s best features well in the list of names below. No two Newfies are the same, and because we understand that, we’ve categorized the names according to different Newfie characteristics so you can choose one that best symbolizes your dog.

The Best Newfoundland Dog Names

Newfies look like big bears, and it was said that they descended from the big black bear dogs introduced by the Vikings. In fact, it is not uncommon for Newfies to be called “Blackie, Brownie,” or “Bear” due to their coloring and looks.

saint bernard Newfoundland dog lying down on grass

However, these names sound generic and common. As a dog owner, you want a name that stands out—lest a couple of Brownies, Blackies, and Bears run to you when you’re at the local dog park. You want a name that commands respect and pays tribute to your dog’s abilities, strength, or characteristics.

Names for Gentle Newfies

Newfs are known as gentle giants. They are calm and have a sweet temper. They are also easy to train when started young. Newfs are great with children and are ideal companions in the world of therapy. In fact, Newfs are forever immortalized as the beloved guardian dog “Nana” in JM Barrie’s Peter Pan.

Close-up image of a Newfoundland Dog

If you chose a Newfoundland for their gentle nature—perhaps because you’d like to delegate the task of being your child’s playmate and guardian to them—here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Argos — Odysseus’ faithful dog in Homer’s Odyssey

  • Arav – clam and peaceful

  • Ada – noble and kind

  • Buddha – teacher of Nirvana

  • Bree – the exalted one

  • Casimir – keeping the peace

  • Chesna – peaceful

  • Dembe – African for peace-loving

  • Denys — Medieval form of Dionysus, the god of the grape harvest

  • Enid – soul

  • Eric – eternal ruler in Norse mythology

  • Fred – peaceful ruler

  • Frida – peace

  • Gala – calm

  • Galen – calm

  • Halima – patient

  • Hoshi — star

  • Iren – peaceful

  • Iris — rainbow

  • Jeff – God’s peace

  • Jonah — Dove

  • Jam – something sweet

  • Keola — life

  • Kenny – good looking

  • Liam – protection

  • Livia – life

  • Milo — peaceful

  • Malia – Mary in Hawaiian

  • Noah – rest

  • Nadine – hope

  • Ollie – elf army

  • Olive – olive

  • Paz/Pax — peace

  • Placido – untroubled

  • Rafiki – friend

  • Rei – salute

  • Salma – whole

  • Salim – secure

  • Tova – good

  • Tao – apple

  • Udo –time of peace

  • Uma – flax

  • Valentina – healthy, strong

  • Vladimir – to rule with greatness, peace

  • Winnie – blessed peace

  • Wyatt – brave and strong

  • Zoey – life

  • Ziggy – victory, protection

Names for Strong Newfies

If you got a Newfie to guard the house against intruders, you’d want to underline their size, strength, and protective nature. Here are some great options when you’re looking for the best name to gift to your new guardian angel, divided by gender:

Strong Newfie Names #1: Males

Here are some names inspired by powerful male heroic figures.

Newfoundland Dog from a side view

Some of these figures can be found in history or literature books whereas others are fictional characters derived from popular movies and cartoons.

  • Apache

  • Aslan

  • Bane

  • Beowulf

  • Brutus

  • Cassius

  • Cerberus

  • Champ

  • Colossus

  • Cujo

  • Czar

  • Fenrir

  • Goliath

  • Gunner

  • Hades

  • Hulk

  • Ice

  • Khan

  • King

  • Kong

  • Lennox

  • Major

  • Max

  • Moose

  • Neptune

  • Nero

  • Odin

  • Pistol

  • Pyro

  • Rhino

  • Spike

  • Sultan

  • Tank

  • Thor

  • Tiberius

  • Titan

  • Voltron

  • Vulcan

  • Yukon

  • Zeppelin

Strong Newfie Names #2: Females

Female Newfies can be just as strong and dependable as their male counterpart—perhaps even more so.

Newfoundland female Dog and Puppies

Be it from pop culture or mythological sources, there is no lack of female hero names to go by.

  • Amazon

  • Astra

  • Athena

  • Aztec

  • Baroness

  • Bertha

  • Blaze

  • Brooklyn

  • Brünnhilde

  • Buffy

  • Calypso

  • Chaka

  • Dakota

  • Diva

  • Duchess

  • Everest

  • Freya

  • Huntress

  • Ivy

  • Juno

  • Karma

  • Katniss

  • Koko

  • Laika

  • Liberty

  • Maxi

  • Medusa

  • Olga

  • Olympia

  • Pandora

  • Ripley

  • Rogue

  • Saber

  • Sable

  • Sheba

  • She-Ra

  • Tiger or Tigress

  • Valkyrie

  • Xena

  • Zelda

  • Zena

Names for Smart Newfies

Aside from being strong and tough, Newfies are also highly intelligent. That’s why they are highly coveted as help dogs or rescue dogs.

Black Newfoundland Dog lying down near flowers

If you got a Newfie for that purpose, here are some names that can get them admitted to Harvard or Yale after they get straight A’s at home.

  • Albert or Einstein – genius physicist and Nobel Prize winner

  • Alcott – after the author of Little Women and 270 other books, Louisa May Alcott

  • Asimov – after the science fiction author, Isaac Asimov

  • Bobby – chess master

  • Brain – Penny’s dog in Inspector Gadget

  • Curie – for scientist Marie Curie

  • Darwin – after Charles Darwin, developer of the Theory of Evolution

  • Dell — Michael Dell of Dell Computers

  • Dexter — genius cartoon character with a laboratory

  • Doogie – Doogie Howser, our favorite teenage doctor

  • Dolph – Dolph Lundgren from the Rocky movies has an IQ of over 160

  • Egghead – slang for smart kids in school

  • Faraday – nice guy and physicist

  • Freud – psychologist and one smart man

  • Galileo – astronomer and physicist

  • Genius – let’s just call a spade, a spade

  • Hannibal – sounds tough, scary and smart just like evil genius Hannibal Lecter

  • Hawk — short for Stephen Hawking, the genius physicist

  • Holmes – Sherlock Holmes, the detective

  • IQ – for smarty pants dogs

  • Jobs – Apple founder and iPhone creator

  • Kasparov – Garry Kasparov, chess grandmaster

  • Kepler — for Johannes Kepler who discovered the motion of planets

  • Kofi – former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan

  • Leonardo — inventor and painter

  • Lisa – the smartest Simpson

  • Ludwig – the composer Ludwig Van Beethoven

  • Mensa – society of people with high IQ

  • Neutron – the other boy genius cartoon character

  • Newton – genius, mathematician, and a good guy

  • Princeton – for the smart Newf with unlimited budget

  • Professor – Newfs that are smart enough to teach at a university

  • Quentin — movie director Quentin Tarantino with IQ over 160

  • Roslin — President Laura Roslin of Battlestar Galactica

  • Rubik – the game for smart cookies

  • Sage – for smart Newfies that don’t pick fights with pit bulls

  • Salk – Jonas Salk, inventor of the polio vaccine

  • Savant – for the Newf with detailed knowledge in a specialized field

  • Savvy – meaning smart and shrewd

  • Screech — Screech Savage from Saved by the Bell

  • Urkel – the brainy kid from Family Matters

  • Witty – Newfs with an intelligent sense of humor

  • Wright – for the Wright Brothers

These are just examples of how you can give an intelligent Newf a smart name. These names will impress people especially if they know who or what you’re naming your dog after. While Newfies are naturally smart, make sure to hone their intelligence by teaching them skills and tricks so that other people can see and appreciate how clever they are. If your Newf is trained as a help dog or a rescue dog, rest assured while you entrust your safety to them because they will help you navigate your way around and protect you.

Names for Water-Loving Newfies

If you take a look at a Newfie’s paws, you will instantly notice the webbed feet. Not all dogs have webbed feet, so Newfs are really special. Aside from this, they also have a water-resistant coat. This is because Newfs were originally companions of fishermen in Newfoundland in Canada. They were used as working dogs that pulled up fishnets, hauled cart, and other equipment.

st-bernard-sitting in the middle of the street

Newfies also exhibit a strong instinct to rescue people from the water. One Newfie once aided in the rescue of 63 shipwrecked sailors. There are many accounts of Newfies rescuing humans from the water. For example, an unnamed Newfie was said to have rescued Napoleon Bonaparte in 1815 during his infamous escape from Elba.

In 1995, a Newf named Boo rescued a hearing-impaired man in the Yuba River in Northern California who almost drowned while dredging for gold. Such brave dogs deserve a strong and heroic name. Here are some ideas for your water-loving Newf.

  • 4 Winds – the strength of God

  • Admiral – highest Naval rank

  • Anchor – somebody to hold us in 1 place

  • Bahama – one of the best places for swimming and relaxing

  • Beach – in reference to their love of the water

  • Bo Po – short for Beach Police

  • Buoy – the good boy who helps us stay afloat

  • Captain — because sometimes you’re the admiral and he’s a rank lower

  • Commodore – for Newfs above captain rank

  • Corona – because we need a cold one after rescuing people

  • Crab – can be in reference to Crusty Crab, famous underwater burger joint

  • Duck – a name that can confuse and amuse other people

  • First Mate – the captain’s right-hand man

  • Goose – another amusing name for a Newf

  • Kayak – a ride for a water-loving dog

  • Lighthouse – guiding light in perilous or unfamiliar waters

  • Marina – safe harbor

  • Mate – an apt name for your best friend

  • Pier — stopover for sailors and seamen

  • Pirate – conqueror of hearts

  • Sailor – low ranking Naval officer, but still loved

  • Sand Dollar – Newfs that love collecting shells or sand

  • Sandusky – meaning water

  • Shrimp – a small name for a big lovable pooch

  • Sub – a big name for a big dog

  • Sundancer – when your Newf is not only a water lover but a dancer too

  • Trout – more amusing Newf names

  • Waves – because waves are fun

  • TMF – for Newfs that are too much fun!

Hopefully, these names will “float your boat.”

Names by the Color of the Newf’s Coat

Another way to name your Newf is to take a look at the color of their coat. Newfs come in 3 colors: black, brown, and white-and-black (Landseer).

A White & Black Newfoundland Puppy sitting by a water bowl

Coming up with names based on their coat color can be hard considering this limitation, but we’ll give it our best shot. Here are some ideas beyond Blackie, Brownie, and Spot.

  • Angus

  • Anise

  • Ajax

  • Baxter

  • Buffy

  • Bandit

  • Coffee

  • Cadbury

  • Cinders

  • Copper

  • Diesel

  • Dove

  • Espresso

  • Ember

  • Ebony

  • Febo

  • Frosty

  • Friday

  • Granite

  • Gypsy

  • Hershey

  • Holi

  • Hex

  • Igloo

  • Ink

  • Jet

  • Jinx

  • Kane

  • Kali

  • Knight

  • Lancelot

  • Link

  • Latte

  • Magnus

  • Merle

  • Monk

  • Noir

  • Nera

  • Onyx

  • Oreo

  • Omen

  • Puck

  • Pepsi

  • Peanut

  • Pongo

  • Quicksilver

  • Quinn

  • Raisin

  • Rusty

  • Storm

  • Smoke

  • Shadow

  • Terror

  • Tootsie

  • Toffee

  • Uno

  • Ursula

  • Vlad

  • Velvet

  • Warlock

  • Waffles

  • Xia

  • X-ray

  • Yankee

  • Yoda

  • Zen

  • Zephyr

Names Inspired by Famous Newfies

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery; so, if you’re having a hard time finding a name for your best friend, why not borrow the names of famous Newfies?

Saint Bernard Newfoundland Dog lying down and a mountain landscape behing them

Here are the names of some of the most famous real and fictional Newfoundland dogs.

  • Adam — winner of Best in Show at the 1984 Westminster Dog Show

  • Bashaw – the Earl of Dudley’s favorite dog

  • Beckham — dog of Penguins’ Matt Murray

  • Bilbo – lifeguard at Sennen beach in Cornwall that saved three lives

  • Boatswain – Lord Byron’s pet

  • Bouncer — Newfie given to George V and Queen Mary when they visited Newfoundland in 1901

  • Brumus — RFK’s dog

  • Bonkers – dog from The World According to Garp

  • Bummer – friend of Lazarus that frequently wandered San Francisco during the early 1860s

  • Carlo – Newfie friend of Emily Dickinson

  • Charlie Erhart – Lyndon B. Johnsn’s Newf

  • Crusoe – main character in R.M. Ballantyne’s The Dog Crusoe and His Master

  • Faithful – Ulysses Grant’s first dog

  • Gander — Royal Rifles of Canada’s mascot, also known as Sergeant Gander

  • Napoleon the Wonder Dog – famous circus dog from England during the 1860s

  • Nana – Wendy, John, and Michael’s dog in Peter Pan

  • Pollux – Newf in Desolation Island

  • Russ – the last dog of Richard Wagner that was buried in the tomb of the famous composer

  • Rigel – mythical Newf of the first officer William Murdoch aboard the RMS Titanic

  • Sable Chief — Royal Newfoundland Regiment’s WWI mascot

Wrap Up

Newfies started out as a working dog, and they sure know how to work their way into our hearts. As a dog breed, they are calm, dignified, and quiet, which is why they need a good strong name that best describes these attributes. Their big size makes them intimidating, but deep down we know that they’re gentle and kind.

Newfoundland Dogs are also big, strong, intelligent, and loyal. Because they are strong, Newfies are also perceived as tough. This is pretty understandable since they look like black and brown bears. Dogs are inherently loyal to their masters. In fact, this is why we have the term “lap dog.” Just like other dogs, Newfs show loyalty to those who are a part or could be part of their pack. Therefore, dogs and Newfs want to bond with their owners because loyalty to humans makes the pack work more efficiently (see how naturally smart they are).

They should have a name that highlights these admirable traits and something that you will be proud to call. You don’t want a name that’s common because other dogs might already have those names, but you also don’t want a name that’s too weird. While there is nothing really wrong about naming them funny or unusual names, it is best to remember that you might need to call your dog aloud in public.

The Newfoundland puppies running on a hill

Remember that Newfies are polite dogs that are good swimmers and like to rescue people in the water. Keep their characteristics in mind, and it will be easy for you to find a name for this gentle giant.

Have you found a name for your Newfie best friend? What did you think of the names listed above? Do you think you will name your dog after one of the names we suggested? Or perhaps you have a list of names of your own that Newfie owners should not miss? Tell us by leaving your comments below.

About the author
David Jones