New member
A word to Breeders:
More on C-BARQ - Full Instructions are at: http://www.ncanewfs.org/cbarq.shtml
Over 400 Newfs have already taken advantage of this great tool AND contributed to the pool of data for the NCA CTMB - a WIN- WIN. Please take a moment and enter your dogs and then - as an ethical, reputable, responsible preservation breeder who cares about the future of our breed- SHARE the link with your puppy families and encourage them to participate! (Dogs need to be 6 months old to be entered).
Here are some thoughts from Pat Randall -
The Newfoundland standard strongly emphasizes the importance of temperament, referring to sweetness of temperament as the “hallmark of the breed,” the “most important single characteristic” of the breed. Occasionally, usually based on reports of isolated incidents at Dog shows or other, e.g. working, events, breeders and owners will question whether we are in danger of losing this ideal temperament. The reports are clearly anecdotal rather than systematic, and highly subjective. Fortunately, or unfortunately, the reports are amplified by the now more dominant social media. With these tools alone it is unlikely we will ever to make any educated judgment about anything other than the most blatant sudden changes in our population of Newfoundlands.
There are three issues that stand in the way of making objective observations of our population. First, is finding (or devising) an instrument to provide systematic and repeatable measurements of various aspects of temperament. Second, is our ability to apply the instrument to a well-defined population. Third is being able to provide absolute anonymity while still being able to access the raw data for individual dogs.
The C-BARQ questionnaire has been administered to thousands of dogs of different breeds and behaves with sufficient reliability and validity to serve as our instrument. It has already been used with service dogs and shelter dogs, in addition to the general pet population. It has a complex factor structure with the main data base having 12 factors (traits), 6 of which have proven repeatable across different populations. It is likely that we will be able to use all twelve in our more restrictive populations, though it is always possible that the Newfoundlands will have insufficient variance to make meaningful measurements on some.
Third, the questionnaire is being collected by a completely independent organization with high credibility.
This can be a game changing development in our ability to track one important aspect of our Newfoundlands, temperament.
- provided by Pat Randall

R Taft

Active member
I still think the "how they have been raised" and "how they have been Socialised" is important. i know that two of my troubled Rescue newfies were due to stupid people and not the breeding of these newfies. But one i think is actually due to bad breeding (Harry).... but a lot can be done to make any dog a sweet temperament. I think the environment has a lot to do with it. and so it is that many dogs with good underlying temperament can be ruined....I think there is still a "type" of person that will often pick a newfie as their companion..... It many ways i think it is sad that they have become so popular due to the media and say FB, becuase a lot of people who do not suit our beautiful giants are getting them, because they think they come trained and easy to get along with, instead of putting in some effort and ending up with dogs like our newfies from pup


Active member
I agree with Ronnie completely.

While I appreciate the idea, the database questionnaire lacks the device to account for environmental factors such as socialization, the dog's experiences, training, the dog's physical health, the situation involved in any given incident, or how the dog is treated overall. The test assumes that all animals are treated or raised equally as in a controlled lab experiment; and it is still only anecdotal based on the fact that it is simply a questionnaire filled out by owners or breeders in which the questions are subject to different interpretations and personal goals. What's more worrying is that the results could be used to stereotype certain breeds.

The questionnaire can't differentiate between situations in which an animal reacts based on environmental factors and/or experience (such as with a harsh, bullying or neglectful owner) or a genetic propensity. It isn't clear whether it takes into account stages of social development such as those that puppies go through.

The questionnaire also doesn't consider whether people lie or are evasive; or are just oblivious to some behaviors; or whether they simply don't understand or may read the question wrong; or to what extent their knowledge is of animal behavior.

And without any baseline from the past to compare with, it can't really predict if there is a newly developing trend. I know it's the best that we have at the moment, but I don't find it all that useful in determining whether Newfs as a whole are losing their sweet temperament. Maybe with a decade of use, it will.

BTW, I did fill out the form on my old rescue dog. In several instances, I found myself questioning what the most truthful and correct answer should be. Which means, I could have answered in different ways, thus skewing the overall result. My own emotions, along with my own experience with this dog and some scanty knowledge of his past, as well as some assumptions, had a definite effect on my answers and how I personally interpreted the given results.
Last edited:


New member
Jane's comments are right on target. I found myself second guessing my answers, etc. and over all did not find the survey to be very enlightening. I filled it out for both Traveler, who I've had from puppyhood and Annabelle, our rescue.