About Newf Friends

Newf Friends Newfoundland Dog Rescue is a volunteer run, foster home based rescue group for Newfoundland Dogs in need in Ontario, Canada.
We place Newfs into carefully screened homes in Ontario and surrounding provinces and states.
Established in 2008.

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Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for general information about our program and our adoption policies and procedures.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Why should I volunteer with a Newf rescue group?

A wonderful note written by one of our volunteers.  Thank you Kaila for all you do, we are so lucky to have you on our team.

I am speaking to my Newf lovers in this note, but the word "Newf" could easily be replaced with any breed of dog.

I started to volunteer with my local Newf Rescue group (Newf Friends) shortly after I brought home Ayasha (4 short years ago).  It has changed my life forever.

There are the obvious benefits to volunteering.

It feels good to watch Newfs come into the program, transform into 'new dogs' (in some cases) and move onto their loving forever homes.  You get to make new like-minded friends that you will not only learn from, but teach; that you'll grow to love and cherish as true friends, and who you can turn to in confidence when you need help or advice.  You will feel like you really are a part of a group working towards a common goal. You will share in the small and big victories and pick each other back up when feeling defeated.  You will be amazed at how a small group of people can consolidate their talents and skills and rally for the Newfs.  They host some pretty awesome social parties too  :)

I cherish all of these benefits of volunteering, but it is not what drives me or has changed my life.  It is not the reason I continue to volunteer or try and educate, educate, educate at any opportunity I get.

I am a Newf rescue volunteer because backyard breeders exist.  When backyard breeders are eliminated, I will stop volunteering because there will no longer be a need.

Lately, it has become more and more apparent to me how beneficial it would be for EVERY single prospective puppy buyer to volunteer with their local Newf Rescue.  In addition to all the benefits I've mentioned above, they will get hands-on experience with cleaning up the messes left behind by backyard breeders, and thus, when it actually comes to puppy purchase time, they will know precisely and very intimately, what to avoid in selecting a breeder.

The prospective puppy buyer will get to experience first-hand what it is like to see a Newf so crippled it can't even walk, let alone run due to no health screening of the dogs in its pedigree.

They will get to see the pain and agony in the eyes of the family that have to give up their beloved pet because they cannot afford the massive vet bills they are facing.

Or, they will get to meet the Newfs that have really terrible temperaments who cannot be placed into homes with other dogs, cats, or children and need nothing less than an experienced, trained handler.  Temperaments that were bred into them from generation after generation of poor breeding stock.

There will be some Newfs that come in with a pedigree to prove they are purebred Newfs, but the homely dog standing in front of them will barely resemble that beautiful Newf they have been visualizing in their head.

Then there will be the cases of neglect.  Dogs so matted and covered in sores they can't move without cowering in pain.  Or so covered in fleas they have no coat whatsoever.  A result of a backyard breeder who didn't give a shit where their pups were going and required nothing more than a cleared cheque before handing over a puppy.

The prospective puppy buyer will immediately have the benefit of a visual of what it means to have NO health clearances, NO concern for temperament, NO proven conformation from the show ring, and NO support system from the breeder.  This first-hand experience is WAY more beneficial and impactful than reading any book, or talking to any contacts or resources.  Until you have been on the front-lines dealing with backyard breeders you will never fully appreciate the importance of DOING YOUR HOMEWORK, identifying the tell-tale signs of a BYB, and doing your part to eliminate them by NOT SUPPORTING THEM!!!

Sometimes I am called an "elitist", a "purebred snob".  That is such a small price to pay to get the message out to people that the ONLY way to eliminate BYBs is by identifying them and NOT supporting them.  Call me whatever you want.  I will continue to raise these points and educate even if not asked for it because I HAVE seen those Newfs mentioned above and once these people have too, they will intimately understand why we are fighting so hard to get this message out. Over and over and over.

I commend all those that are trying to get this same message out to the masses.  If even one person is absorbing this message, then we are winning.  :)

So, for those of you out there that are thinking of adding a puppy to your family PLEASE VOLUNTEER!!!!  Like me, you will be forever changed, you will start shouting the same message as me, and you will have first-hand experience with the effects of NOT doing enough homework and supporting those that have NO interest in improving the breed.  And who knows, you may even end up with a rescue Newf warming your feet at night rather than that puppy you were originally planning for.  :)