Newts are adolescent Freakers.
Newts are adolescent children or teenagers infected with the "Freaker Virus." They appear to be ranging in age from ten through fourteen, and have a height between 55 inches to 62.5 inches. Though occasionally bipedal, Newts will usually crawl on all fours when they move or attack. Like the adult Freakers, their skin are discolored and their internal structure are somewhat visible. However, a unique characteristic that the Newts have apart from any other Freaker is still retaining Hair. This could be from a late-stage symptom of the virus causing hair loss not yet being fully active in Newts.
Newts are "opportunistic hunters" that will only attack Deacon if he is low health or engages them. They also apparently, as stated by some of Days Gone staff, tend to avoid larger Freakers. They seem to have a sense of self preservation exemplified by them waiting for a good opportunity to strike, rather than attacking you head on like the other variants of Freakers would.
As stated, they will avoid Deacon or observe him from a distance if he has a good amount of health. Newts also appear to be very agile, scaling structures to run away or position themselves for attack. It would make logical sense for Newts to follow similar behavioral patterns as the other Freakers (e.g. needing food, drink and hibernating).