Dog Breeds: N

The gigantic Neapolitan Mastiff’s fearsome appearance gives a clue as to its history as a guardian breed. Fiercely protective of its people and property, the Neo’s power and strong instincts make ownership an onerous responsibility. As it can be aggressive towards other dogs, it is not suitable for multi-pet households, and it is too large and clumsy to be suitable as a children’s companion.

An uncommon and unusual breed of wild dog, the New Guinea Singing Dog is native to New Guinea, an island off the Australian coast. While it is hoped a small number remain in the wild, most are kept within zoos and conservation parks. A few individuals live with people, though they make difficult pets who require extensive socialisation and a consistent training programme.

The New Labralound (or Newfador) is a hybrid dog, which is a mix between a Newfoundland and a Labrador Retriever. This large dog is a gentle giant with an enviable reputation for being tolerant of pets and children. They need plenty of living space and exercise, and their sheer size can make them a hazard to small children or the infirm. Possible health concerns include bloat, allergic skin disease, and heart problems.

Truly a gentle giant, the Newfoundland has been credited with saving many lives at sea. Docile and intelligent, the breed is easily trained and very trustworthy with other pets and children. Newfies need a fair amount of grooming, and produce a lot of drool, which may be an issue for house-proud owners.

A social dog that will play happily with other animals and people, the Newfypoo has a relaxed, happy-go-lucky nature that tends to be contagious. They are protective of those they love and always on high alert, making them superb guard dogs. Given their size, the Newfypoo would not be suited to a small house and requires ample space.

The Norfolk Terrier is a big character in a very compact frame. The breed was developed to control vermin in the farmyards of East Anglia – a task which it still performs well to this day. However, it is an affectionate and sociable pet, approaching life with a fearless and cheerful demeanour. It has modest exercise requirements, and is a great companion for children and other dogs.

Energetic and driven, the Norjack is not for the faint of heart and will be sure to keep their owners on their toes. With a loving, happy nature, the Norjack makes a pleasant companion, though can be hard work and requires lots of exercise every day. Smart and intuitive, this breed has the ability to excel in a wide range of disciplines.

A mixed-breed that descends from working dogs, the Norkie has evolved into a satisfactory little companion animal that enjoys spending time with its family. While most get along well with children, some have the potential to be snappy, so owners should focus their attention on ensuring that bad behaviour is not tolerated and that they are thoroughly socialised from a young age.

The Norrbottenspets is an old breed whose numbers are recovering from near extinction. This medium-sized Spitz-type dog is a paragon of virtue who gets on with children and other pets. Loving, loyal, and energetic, he makes a great family dog. His only vice is his voice, as he does love to bark.

A strikingly beautiful breed, these ‘wolf-like’ dogs have only been around for a few decades. Bred to resemble a wolf but to form strong bonds with people, these intelligent animals can make a superb addition to an active household with older children. Sensitive at times, the Northern Inuit Dog appreciates having human company, as well as something to do to keep them active and occupy their mind.

The Norwegian Buhund is a hardy herding dog who was used to move sheep and other livestock to summer grazing grounds. They are cheerful, affectionate dogs and love to please their owners. They prefer a highly active lifestyle with plenty of opportunities to get out and about in a variety of environments.

National dog of its homeland, the Norwegian Elkhound has a history as a moose hunter that goes back to Viking times, but nowadays, it is most often kept as an entertaining and loyal family pet. Naturally protective, it makes an excellent watch dog, but does bark a lot, and its owners need to be able to provide it with plenty of exercise.

A small and attractive dog, the Norwegian Lundehund was once used to hunt puffin birds from their nests on coastal cliffs. While no longer needed for this task today, they are becoming increasingly popular within Norway (as well as internationally), thanks to their affectionate, gentle nature and their undeniable ability to get along well with small children and other household pets.

Like its cousin the Norfolk Terrier, the Norwich Terrier is a small dog with a big personality. Its background as a ratter and fox hunter gives it plenty of spark, and its affectionate, eager-to-please nature makes it a pleasure to be around. This is a highly sociable breed that gets along well with everyone and will happily integrate into a family with other dogs.

The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever is a medium sized gundog with a fox-like appearance. Originally developed in Canada by crossing a number of breeds the ‘Toller’, as it is otherwise known, was used to lure wildfowl out into the open and retrieve them after they had been shot. The breed has an affectionate, bouncy, playful personality but requires lots of exercise. There are a number of health problems that can affect the Toller, so it is important to be aware of these.