The Canine Chronicles Directory
Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever has a double coat with a straight, medium
length outer-coat and a soft, dense undercoat. Feathering should be on the throat,
back of the thighs and behind the ears. When showing this breed, the color preferences
are all shades of red or orange, lighter with colored feathering underneath the
body and tail. They may also have white markings on their feet, chest, face, and
on the tip of their tail. The wide head is slightly rounded with a wedge-like appearance
and the muzzle tapered. The almond-shaped eyes should be medium in size and be amber
to brown in color. The eye rim color should be the same as the coat or dark. The
nose and lips should match the eye rim. The triangular-shaped ears are set high
and well back on the head. They should be medium in size and have rounded tips.
The lips should be tight and the mouth soft but strong. The teeth should meet in
a scissor-like bite. The well-muscled neck should be medium in length merging into
a short back with a level topline. The chest should be deep and well insulated.
The forelegs should be straight and parallel. The hindlegs should be well muscled
with slightly sloping pasterns. The round feet are webbed with well-arched toes.
The luxuriously feathered tail is carried below the topline while at rest. When
active the tail is held high and curves over the back.
Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers are a gentle, affectionate and loving breed.
They enjoy being with their family and are patient with children. This breed, unlike
other retrievers, tend to be reserved around strangers and will bark when they sense
danger. The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever gets along well with other dogs and
household animals. This breed can dominate the household if allowed so they should
be socialized and trained from an early age. They are playful, love to swim and
are naturally passionate about hunting.
Height: 17-21" ; Weight: 37-51 lbs.
Minor concerns with this breed include thyroid and autoimmune problems and progressive
The Toller will do okay living in an apartment if they get enough exercise. They
prefer colder climates.
This breed needs lots of daily exercise and should be allowed have lots of fun.
They do well with retrieving.
About 12-14 years
The topcoat and undercoat of this breed need to be combed and brushed daily. Bathe
only when necessary so that you do not remove the natural oils in its coat that
make it waterproof. This breed is an average shedder.
This breed was originally developed during the 19th century, in the Little River
District of Nova Scotia, Canada. They were initially called the Little River Dog
(or the Yarmouth Toller) after their birthplace. The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever
is believed to be developed from a cross between Golden, Chesapeake Bay, Labrador,
and Flat Coated Retrievers. It is also thought that a small amount of Cocker Spaniel,
Irish Setter, working Collies and a variety of Spitz were added as well. In the
20th century, their skills were honed to lure and retrieve waterfowl. In 1945, the
breed was recognized by the Canadian Kennel Club and the breed's name was officially
changed to Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. This name was chosen from the method
in which this breed lures ducks to the hunter. When "tolling" the dog runs and jumps
along a shoreline full of ducks. The dog then disappears and reappears with a stick
or balls, thus arousing the curiosity of the ducks and bringing them into gunshot
range of the hunter. Once the shooting commences, the dog retrieves the ducks for
their owner. The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever was not well known until they
won Best in Show at two Canadian Dog Shows. The breed became increasingly popular
after these events. They were soon exporting the breed to countries such as the
United Kingdom, the United States and Sweden. In 1988, this breed, along with three
other Canadian dog breeds, were honored with their portraits on a postage stamp
and in 1995 they became the official dog of Nova Scotia. The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling
Retriever was officially recognized by the UKC in 1987 and by the AKC in 2003.
AKC Sporting, UKC Gun Dog