Working Dogs


In AKC Conformation the judge compares each Newfoundland to the breed standard, the written description for the breed. The dog and bitch that “conform” best to the Standard in the Judge’s opinion that day are awarded Championship Points. The number of points awarded is based upon the number of Newfoundlands entered in each sex.

The NCSD holds our Regional Specialty Show every year at the Del Mar Fair Grounds. See the events page for dates.

Water Rescue

Nowhere is the bond of admiration and trust between a dog and its handler more apparent than at a Newfoundland water test. Maybe, it’s because the purpose of the event is to measure the dog’s ability to save human life when called upon. Maybe it’s because of the intense training needed to prepare for testing.

Whatever the reason, it allows us to witness the unique traits of a special breed. The Newfoundland’s large stature and powerful muscles, its waterproof coat and webbed toes all enable it to stroke through the water with the speed and endurance to rescue a drowning man.

There are many instances on record of Newfies saving lives in water disasters. To encourage these lifesaving instincts, in 1971, a group of enthusiasts developed plans for a water trial consisting of 12 exercises, six each in two divisions, junior and senior. Two years later, the Newfoundland Club of America sanctioned its first official rescue test in Michigan. Over time, the rules have changed, mostly from observing the dog’s natural instincts, but the original concept remains intact.

NCSD help each other prepare for all levels of Water Rescue and we hold Water Tests in the late summer, where we test our skills and work on earning these titles.
NCA Water Work Information

Draft Work

The goal of draft work is to show how beautifully Newfs and their humans can work as a team. A great performance displays control while highlighting the Newfs natural abilities and independence.

Specialty carting is a great beginning event for new draft teams. The titles that a team can earn range from DD (Draft Dog), to DDX (Advanced Draft Dog) or TDD (Team Draft).


Did you know our dogs have a sense of smell that’s between 10,000 and 100,000 times more perceptive than the human nose?

Nosework is a fun sport that can help build confidence in a young or shy dog and give an older dog or dog recovering from injuries a safe, non-strenuous activity.

There are a few different organizations that hold trials, each unique in their requirements, but all fun for you and your Newf:

Obedience / Rally


Obedience is the foundation for all kinds of fun activities with your Newf. It’s the best place to start if you want to do water work, draft work, agility, or simply have a well-behaved pet. You might even get bit by the obedience bug and end up competing in a trial.


Rally is where you and your Newf can demonstrate your ability to work as a team. The goal is to navigate a course of 10-20 signs made up of obedience-style tasks that are performed continuously. The team that scores the highest in the shortest amount of time takes the top prize.

Therapy Work

Naturally sweet, calm, and in tune with their people, our Newfs excel as therapy dogs. Therapy dogs visit schools, group homes and rehabilitation centers providing therapy to individuals. The dogs are accompanied by their handlers (generally their owners) who have trained them and have been certified by an organization to provide this service to the community.

There are several organizations in our area where you will find Newfs and their owners committed to helping others:

Love On A Leash (The Foundation For Pet-Provided Therapy)