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Drawing by Harrison Weir (1824-1906)  The anecdote I am now about to give is from the pen of the Rev. J.E. Atkinson, a good and scientific naturalist:  "Walking with a favorite Newfoundland dog of great size, one frosty day, I observed the animal's repeated disappointment on putting his head down, with the intention to drink, at sundry ice-covered pools. After one of these disappointments, I broke the ice with my foot, for my thirsty companion's behoof. The next time it seemed good to the dog to try and drink, instead of waiting for me to break the ice as before, he set his own huge paw forcibly on the ice, and, with a little effort, obtained water for himself."  From: Rev. R.O. Morris, B.A. Dogs and Their Doings. N.Y., Harper & Bros, 1872, p. 16f.  (reprinted from NewfTide 1976)

Painters of Note

battArthur Batt
Horse, Mastiff and Newfoundland, 1881
Oil on canvas, 27 x 36 ins. Collection AKC Museum,
gift of Marie A. Moore

"The tendency to memorialize favorite horses and dogs on canvas flourished in the 19th century, particularly in England. This painting shows a gray horse under saddle with a Mastiff and Newfoundland posed outside a country house. A painting of this type not only documented the owner's most prized possessions but also his station in life." William Secord, A Breed Apart 2001


Horatio Henry Couldery (1832-1893):
The President 1868

Oil on Canvas 20 x 24 inches. Collection AKC Museum, gift of Frank T. Sabella. "Although he became renown for his sensitive portraits of cats, Couldery was a masterful painter of dogs as well, paying close attention to expression and coat texture, as is evident in this pisture of a Newfoundland sitting behind his writing desk." William Secord, A Breed Apart 2001.

detail of painting by Alfred de Dreux
Innocence Between Two Friends Chromolithograph, Collection AKC Museum,
gift of Pamela Cole, Dornwald Kennel

"De Dreux was influenced by English painters, especially Landseer, and some of his works reflect the Victorian fascination with children and dogs. The Landseer Newfound looks protectively at the child, almost assuming the role of foster parent, while a spaniel sits up and begs for attention." William Secord, A Breed Apart 2001.

George Earl, Cato c. 1870 Oil on Canvas 14 x 15 1/2 ins. Collection AKC Museum, gift of Frank T. Sabella

"This portrait head study of Cato was part of George Earl's series of oval and circular paintings entitled "Champion Dogs of England" dating from around 1870." William Secord, A Breed Apart 2001.


John Emms (1843-1912): Dogs Watching Bathers


Jean-Léon Gérôme’s L’Attente: Etude de Chien de Terra-Nuova, which depicts a Newfoundland, was estimated at $120,000-$180,000, and sold for $204,000 at Christies in June 2007. An early example of Gérôme’s dog portraits, it is the largest known work by the artist in this genre, and may be a portrait of the artist's dog.

George Charles Morland Cropped Mastiff and a Newfoundland, 1792
Oil on canvas, 16 x 22 ins. Collection AKC Museum,
gift of Marie A. Moore

"Although he was known for his charming rustic scenes and his love of animals, Morland lived a somewhat wild life, regularly attending cock fights and bullbaiting exhibitions. The Mastifftype dog with cropped ears on the left was probably kept for bull- and animal-baiting. The dog on the right is probably an ancestor of our present-day Landseer Newfoundland, named after Sir Edwin Landseer." William Secord, A Breed Apart 2001


Charles Schwanfelder (1774–1837):
Nelson with a Terrier


George Stubbs: Portrait of a Newfoundland dog, the property of H.R.H., the Duke of York. Painted 1803, auctioned at Sotheby's London: November 24, 1999 (3.6 million dollars US)


Eugéne-Joseph Verboeckhoven (1798-1881): Princess Louise- Marie d'Orleans with a horse and a black Newfoundland


Eugéne-Joseph Verboeckhoven (1798-1881): The favourite animals of Leopold I - 1845

Oil on canvas 71 1/4" x 59" Bellvue Museum, Brussels. Verboeckhoven's composition is almost a mirror image of the Landseer work "Hector, Nero, and Dash with the Parrot, Lory". The chair is positioned on the right and the focus of the attention on the large black- and-white Newfoundland Dog. Like the animals in the Landseer painting, those in Verboeckhoven's work appear in the best possible light, cleaned up for their portrait, no doubt to please their royal patrons. Such portraits were very much admired and in the mainstream of art at the time. Bowron, Rebbert, Rsenblum & Secord Best In Show 2006.


Wouterus Verschuur (1812-1874)


Arthur Wardle Landseer Newfoundland
Oil on canvas, 30 x 25 ins.
Collection AKC, gift of Gerald Massey


The Faithful Playmate- Samuel West


A Lakeside Repose




dogmuseumAKC Museum of the Dog

Few museums are devoted to simple ideas that live forever, like love and devotion.

In the early 1970s, interested individuals devoted to dogs met to discuss the possibility of a national museum of art and books focusing on man's best friend. In 1973, the Westminster Kennel Club Foundation conducted a survey to explore the level of support for such a project. While encouraged by the results, it was decided a broader level of support was needed. In 1979, the American Kennel Club Foundation was formed to help meet this need and by 1981, The Dog Museum of America had its first director, William Secord.


The AKC Museum of the Dog is dedicated to the collection, preservation, exhibition, and interpretation of the art, artifacts and literature of the dog for the purposes of education, historical perspective, aesthetic enjoyment and in order to enhance the appreciation for and knowledge of the significance of the dog and the human/canine relationship.

The NCA Board approved a $1000 annual donation to support the work of the AKC Museum of the Dog.

The AKC Museum of the Dog houses a number of works depicting Newfoundland Dogs, including:

Ch Dryad's Strong Sea Pirate, 1978, lifesize bronze by June Harrah, given in memory of Elinor C. Ayers (see photo above)

Newfoundland, lithograph by Girio Brummett, given by Mrs. Jay A. Dewey in memory of her mother, Kitty Drury

Arrival (Lewis and Clark with Newfoundland), 1980, bronze by Stanley Wanlass, given by the estate of Lorna E. Spangenberg

Pair of Newfoundland Garden Dogs, 20th Century, given by Charles Webster

Cato, 1865, oil on canvas by George Earl, given by Frank T. Sabella

Innocence Bewteen Two Friends, chromolithograph by ALfred de Dreux, given by Dornwald Kennel

The President (Paying The Bills), 1868, oil on canvas by Horatio H. Couldery, given by Frank T. Sabella










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