Pawfect Facts About The Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Dog Kids Will Love

Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever facts to discover a fascinating breed of dog.

The Nova Scotia duck tolling retrievers are gun dogs bred for hunting. The toller can distract the waterfowl from their territories and bring them in the radius of the hunters shooting range. The breed's origin can be traced to Nova Scotia in Canada. The breed was initially known as the little river duck dog. It has other names like the Yarmouth toller, tolling retriever, and the little red duck dog. The toller breed is a cross of breeds like retrievers, spaniels, setters, and farm collie mongrels.

Tollers have a beautiful double coat of water repellent fur. The red coat or the orange coat comes with white markings on the tail, feet, and chest. They have a fluffy tail, and these little furballs make a photogenic breed. They are pretty popular in dog sports and are classified as a sporting dog by many organizations. Although they are a healthy dog breed, they have occasional troubles with their health concerning progressive retinal atrophy, Addison's disease, and hip dysplasia.

If you are a dog fanatic, you will find more exciting information right here on the labrador retriever and the Australian shepherd.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

Fact File

What do they prey on?


What do they eat?


Average litter size?

6–10 pups

How much do they weigh?

Male: 44 – 51 lb (20 – 23 kg) Female: 37 – 44 lb (17 – 20 kg)

How long are they?


How tall are they?

Male: 18 – 21 in (45 – 54 cm)

Female: 16 – 20 in (42 – 51 cm)

What do they look like?

Red, Copper, Red Golden, Orange with White Markings

Skin Type


What are their main threats?


What is their conservation status?


Where you'll find them

Pet owners' home and Shelters


Canada, North America, United Kingdom





Scientific Name

Canus Lupus familiaris





Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever?

The tollers are purebred dogs known for their sporty and energetic nature. They are the smallest variants in the retrievers breed. Their inherent nature is hunting dogs to help hunters get their game. They are very popular in dog sports, excelling in dock jumping, search, rescue, and flyball.

What class of animal does a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever belong to?

Tollers are mammals who give birth to their offspring. The female dogs have mammary glands, a distinct feature of the mammals, and they nurse their puppies postpartum.

How many Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers are there in the world?

As per an independent study, the toller's count was estimated at 27 dogs in 2010. There is no information available on any recent study being made to re-evaluate this rare breed of dogs' population status.

Where does a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever live?

The tollers live with their owners or in shelters. They are one of the friendliest dogs to bring home. They are highly adaptable dogs and eager to please their humans around. Bring home your adventure partners, and you will not regret it one bit.

What is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever's habitat?

The toller lives with their owners in their homes. They may not be suited for apartment living as they get excited and tend to bark a lot. The toller will fare pretty well with novice owners. They have separation anxiety if left alone for too long. They are best suited for cold weather.

Who do Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers live with?

The tollers are generally known to be living with their pet owners. Their intelligence, high energy levels, and eagerness to please make them an instant hit with the family members. Tollers love to be in their people's company and are very good with children. They have a lot of patience and are friendly towards other pets too. Their unique characteristics make them a favorite in dog sport.

How long does a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever live?

The average life span of a toller is 10 - 14 years. The tollers boast good health and tend to be easy on the grooming side. Toller's general health problems can be Hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, and collie eye anomaly, to name a few.

How do they reproduce?

Reproduction happens by mating the male and female dogs. The female delivers six to ten puppies in one litter and the average gestation period is 63 days in these breeds of dogs.

What is their conservation status?

As per an independent study by the Institute of Canine Biology, the Tollers species is endangered. Inbreeding and a lower count of the dogs being used for breeding is a significant concern. As very few families owned these dogs, there is a massive gap in the count of males and females used for breeding. A few clubs are formed to preserve this rare breed of dogs.

Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Fun Facts

What do Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers look like?

Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever puppies are too adorable to be ignored.

These fur companions will stand out in a crowd for their copper, red, or orange coats with white markings. Their wide almond-shaped eyes with alert and friendly expressions will make your heart mush. Their triangular-shaped ears sit well on their face giving a vigilant straight look. They have strong jaws good enough to carry their game or catch to the masters.

How cute are they?

It is difficult not to fall for the cuteness of these affectionate dogs. They will always greet you with the same enthusiasm when you are away from them, be it for 30 minutes or a few hours away. They are ever enthusiastic about an outdoor game or a trek. It would help if you gave them undivided attention, and they will be the best companion there ever will be for you. The puppy or an adult toller cannot miss the sporting enthusiasm.

How do they communicate?

Like any other dog breed, the tollers also have unique ways to communicate with their masters. It can be in eye movements, different sounds, or body language. The Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever's scream indicates their excitement or keenness, which is for loud barks.

Tollers need to be handled very delicately as they are susceptible dogs. They can get aggressive if they are left alone for long hours. Tollers need good training and early socialization skills to keep their destructive nature off-limits.

How big is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever?

Tollers are medium-sized dogs and are considered more petite than other Retriever variants. The average toller size can be 19 – 20 inches compared to a golden retriever that can grow up to 22 - 24 inches.

How fast can a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever run?

Tollers are considered one of the most athletic breeds of dogs. Their sporting nature and hunting genes contribute to great agility and speed. They are energetic and love the outdoors. They make a great companion for running, playing, hunting, camping, and more.

How much does a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever weigh?

The average toller weighs about 44 – 51 pounds. They are much lighter than the golden retriever, which weighs 65 - 75 pounds. The weight of the toller needs to be observed. Like with any other dog, tollers have a big appetite for their energy levels. Hence the amount of food served should be carefully monitored to keep obesity at bay.

What are their male and female names of the species?

The male dog is often referred to as a dog, while the female is referred to as a bitch. In the breeding parlance, the male dog is called a stud, and the female is termed as a bitch. While indicating parentage, the male is called sire, and the female is referred to as a dam.

What would you call a baby Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever?

This dog breed's baby is called a pup, whelp, or puppy. The Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever cost is anywhere between $1500 - $2500. Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever's price is on the higher end for the breed's rarity. A Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever puppy can be destructive with their high energy if proper crate training is not given to them.

What do they eat?

They need high-quality dog food to be fed to them twice a day. The amount of food needs to be regulated based on the dog's age. The quantity also needs to be kept in check as these fur buddies are prone to obesity. Obesity attracts unnecessary health issues which are better left avoided. Though dog treats are essential to motivate your dog during training, a check on how much is given is essential.

These dogs are notorious for having a big appetite. The food should be out of reach from them; otherwise, they can gulp it down in one go

Are they slobbery?

This dog breed is a blessing for all the cleanliness enthusiasts out there. The tollers' drooling potential is the least, making them less of a concern in the hygiene department. The Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever shedding is average, requiring weekly brushing. Only during the spring and fall may they need daily brushing.

Would they make a good pet?

The toller is a very family-friendly dog known for its patience. The little river duck dog is a cuddle monster if you are looking for some pet love. Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever temperament makes them keen and observant, always ready for some action. They are brilliant and alert dogs who need a good amount of physical and mental activities to keep their energy levels checked. They constantly need new tricks or training to keep their prey drive healthy. Though they are good with the family members, they can be a little aloof from strangers. They may not warm up to a stranger that easily. All the toller expects from you is some affection in return and your time.

Did you know...

They are the provincial dog of Nova Scotia

Only two dogs in the world are used for decoy purposes. Nova Scotia duck tolling retrievers is one of them and the other dog breed being 'Nderlandse Kooikerhondje.'

The Mic Mac Indian dog inspired the Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever breed.

The American Kennel Club recognizes the Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever as having the longest breed name in its records.

The breed enthusiasts who wanted to conserve this breed formed the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Club USA in 1984.

Where does the name 'toller' come from?

The word toller has its origin in the Middle English word 'tollen,' meaning to allure or entice. The tollers lure the game for the hunters and assist in hunting waterfowls. The hunters hide and allow the dogs to play near the water edge. The Yarmouth toller's antics piques the curiosity of the ducks and other waterfowl, who come closer to shore within shooting range of the hunter. Once the hunter claims the game, these dogs retrieve the dead animals for their masters.

How are Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers adapted to water?

They have webbed feet and a water repellent double coat of medium length to swim better. The double coat is water-resistant. This ability helps them retrieve the game from the water sources. They are excellent swimmers too.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including the greyhound and the Newfoundland.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one of our Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever coloring pages.



At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents.

We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it’s important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.

Kidadl provides inspiration to entertain and educate your children. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.

Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong.

Sponsorship & Advertising Policy

Kidadl is independent and to make our service free to you the reader we are supported by advertising.

We hope you love our recommendations for products and services! What we suggest is selected independently by the Kidadl team. If you purchase using the buy now button we may earn a small commission. This does not influence our choices. Please note: prices are correct and items are available at the time the article was published.

Kidadl has a number of affiliate partners that we work with including Amazon. Please note that Kidadl is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.

We also link to other websites, but are not responsible for their content.

Read our Sponsorship & Advertising Policy
Get The Kidadl Newsletter

1,000 of inspirational ideas direct to your inbox for things to do with your kids.

Thank you! Your newsletter will be with you soon.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
No items found.
No items found.