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Mastiff

Mastiff Dog Breed Information

In a Sentence:

A large and powerful breed of dog with a calm and gentle temperament.

Scientific Name:

Canis lupus familiaris.
Type:Mammal

Size:

Mastiffs are considered a Large to Very Large Dog breed.
Weight:60-90 kg.
Height:70-91 cm (27-36 inches) for males-64-81 cm (25-32 inches) for females.
Length:76-91 cm (30-36 inches).

Lifespan:

The average lifespan of a Mastiff is 6-12 years.

Behavior:

What type of dog is a Mastiff, how do they behave and what temperament do they have? See below for a detailed overview of their traits and personality.

Personality & Temperament

Mastiffs are known for their gentle and loyal personalities. They are calm, patient and affectionate dogs that love to be around their families. They also have protective instincts and will go to great lengths to protect their loved ones.

Mastiffs are generally good-natured and friendly with people and other animals. They are not typically aggressive or territorial, but they may become protective if they sense a threat to their family or home. They are intelligent and can be trained to perform a variety of tasks.

Mastiffs are generally laid-back and relaxed dogs that enjoy spending time with their families. They are not typically high-energy dogs and do not require a lot of exercise. However, they do need regular walks and playtime to keep them healthy and happy.

Mastiffs are also renownwed for their loyalty and devotion to their families. They are often described as “velcro dogs” because they love to be near their owners and will follow them around the house. They are also very sensitive to their owners’ moods and emotions and will often try to comfort them when they are feeling down.

Overall, Mastiffs are gentle giants with a calm and loyal temperament. They make great family pets and are well-suited for households with children and other pets. However, they do require proper socialization and training to ensure that they are well-behaved and well-adjusted dogs.

Intelligence

Mastiffs are generally considered to be intelligent dogs. They are loyalty, protective and have a very calm demeanor. They are quick learners and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. However, like all dogs, individual Mastiffs may vary in their intelligence and trainability.

Trainability

Mastiffs are intelligent and trainable dogs, but they can also be stubborn and independent at times. As with any dog, training requires patience, consistency and positive reinforcement. Early socialization and obedience training are essential for Mastiffs to become well-behaved and obedient pets. With proper training and socialization, Mastiffs can be trained to be excellent family pets and loyal companions. However, it is important to note that Mastiffs are large and powerful dogs, so it is crucial to train them with care and respect to prevent any potential behavioral issues.

Sleep

Mastiffs are big sleepers and can sleep for up to 14 hours a day. However, the amount of sleep they need can vary depending on their age, activity level and health. Puppies and older dogs may need more sleep, while younger and more active dogs may need less. It’s important to provide your Mastiff with a comfortable and quiet place to sleep so they can get the rest they need.

Bark

Mastiffs are generally not excessive barkers, but they will bark to alert their owners of potential danger or strangers approaching their territory. They have a deep, booming bark that can be intimidating to intruders. However, excessive barking can be a sign of boredom, anxiety or lack of exercise, so it’s important to provide them with enough mental and physical stimulation to prevent this behavior.

Drool

Mastiffs are known for their excessive drooling. They are a breed that drools a lot, especially after eating or drinking or when they are excited or anxious. Some Mastiffs drool more than others, but in general, they are considered heavy droolers. It is important to keep a towel handy to wipe their mouths and prevent excessive drool from getting on furniture or clothing.

Lick

Mastiffs are affectionate dogs and may lick their owners or other dogs as a sign of affection. However, the amount of licking can vary from dog to dog and may also depend on the individual dog’s personality and behavior. Some Mastiffs may lick more than others, while some may not lick much at all. It is important to note that excessive licking can sometimes be a sign of anxiety or stress, so it is important to monitor your Mastiff’s behavior and consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns.

Jump

Mastiffs do not have a great ability to jump. Due to their large size and heavy build, they are not very agile and are not capable of jumping very high. In general, Mastiffs can only jump up to a height of about 2-3 feet, but this can vary depending on the individual dog’s size and physical ability. However, it is important to note that Mastiffs are not typically trained for jumping activities and should not be encouraged to jump excessively as it can put strain on their joints and cause injury.

Dig

Mastiffs have a moderate tendency to dig. They aren’t excessive diggers, but they may dig holes in the yard if they are bored or not getting enough exercise. Providing them with plenty of mental and physical stimulation can help reduce their digging behavior.

Good Fit for You?

Is a Mastiff the right dog for you? Keep reading to find out how compatible you are with a Mastiff.

Exercise

Mastiffs are a large breed of dog that require moderate exercise to maintain their health and well-being. They should be given at least 30-60 minutes of exercise daily, which can include walks, playtime and other activities that engage their minds and bodies. However, it is important to note that Mastiffs are prone to joint and bone problems, so it is important to avoid excessive exercise or high-impact activities that could cause injury. It is always best to consult with a veterinarian to determine the appropriate exercise routine for your Mastiff based on their age, weight and overall health.

Space

Mastiffs are large dogs and require a lot of space to move around comfortably. They need a minimum of a large yard or outdoor space where they can run and play. They also need a spacious indoor area where they can rest and relax. Ideally, they should have access to both indoor and outdoor spaces throughout the day. It is important to note that Mastiffs are not suited for small apartments or homes with limited space.

Apartment

Mastiffs are not typically recommended for apartment living due to their large size and need for space to move around. They are usually relatively inactive indoors and require daily exercise and outdoor time. Additionally, their size can make them difficult to manage in small living spaces and they may not be suitable for neighbors who are sensitive to noise. If you are looking for a dog to keep in an apartment, it is best to consider breeds that are smaller in size and have lower energy levels.

Left Alone

Mastiffs aren’t comfortable with being left alone for long periods of time. They are social animals and thrive on human interaction and attention. If left alone for extended periods, they may become anxious, depressed or destructive. It is important to provide them with plenty of exercise, mental stimulation and socialization to prevent these issues. Additionally, crate training can be helpful in providing a safe and comfortable space for them when left alone.

Kid/Family Friendly

Yes, Mastiffs are generally good with kids and families. They have a gentle and calm nature and they are very protective of their family members. However, due to their large size, they may accidentally knock over small children, so it is important to supervise interactions between Mastiffs and young children. Additionally, proper socialization and training are important to ensure that the Mastiff is well-behaved around children and other family members.

Perfect Fit

A Mastiff would be a perfect fit for a home/household that has:

  1. A spacious yard: Mastiffs are large dogs and need plenty of space to move around and exercise.
  2. A family with older children: Mastiffs are gentle giants but their size can be overwhelming for young children. They are also protective of their family and may not tolerate rough play.
  3. A calm and consistent environment: Mastiffs thrive in a calm and consistent environment. They do not do well with loud noises or sudden changes in routine.
  4. A family that is willing to provide regular exercise: Mastiffs need regular exercise to maintain their health and prevent obesity. Daily walks and playtime in the yard are important for their physical and mental well-being.
  5. A family that is willing to provide proper training and socialization: Mastiffs are intelligent dogs but can be stubborn. Proper training and socialization are important to ensure they are well-behaved and obedient.

Pros and Cons:

Mastiffs are large, powerful dogs that have been bred for centuries as guardians and protectors. While they can make loyal and loving pets, there are also some drawbacks to owning one. Here are five pros and cons of owning a Mastiff:

ProsCons
1. Loyal and protective1. High maintenance
2. Gentle and affectionate2. Large size
3. Low exercise needs3. Health issues
4. Good with children4. Can be stubborn
5. Calm and relaxed temperament5. Shorter lifespan

Overall, owning a Mastiff can be a rewarding experience for those who are willing to put in the time and effort to care for these gentle giants. However, it’s important to consider the potential challenges before bringing one into your home.

Cost:

The cost of a Mastiff in Australia can vary depending on several factors, including the breeder, location and pedigree. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 AUD for a Mastiff puppy from a reputable breeder. However, prices can go higher for show-quality or champion bloodline Mastiffs. It’s important to do your research and find a reputable breeder who health tests their dogs and provides proper care for their puppies.

Breed History:

Mastiffs were originally bred as war dogs and guard dogs. They were used by ancient civilizations such as the Babylonians, Persians and Romans to protect their homes, livestock and property. Later, they were used as hunting dogs and to fight in battles.

In medieval times, Mastiffs were used to guard castles and estates. They were also used to hunt large game such as wild boar and bears.

Today, Mastiffs are primarily bred as companion dogs. They are loyal and have a protective nature, making them excellent family pets. However, they still retain their strong guarding instincts and can be trained for protection work.

Current Usage

Mastiffs are used for a variety of purposes, including as pets, guard dogs and working dogs. Here are some examples:

  1. Guard dogs: Mastiffs are known for their protective nature and are often used as guard dogs. They are loyal and devoted to their owners and will protect them from any perceived threats. Mastiffs are often used to guard homes, businesses and livestock.
  2. Search and rescue: Mastiffs have a keen sense of smell and are often used in search and rescue operations. They can track missing persons and are also used to locate survivors in natural disasters.
  3. Therapy dogs: Mastiffs are gentle giants and have a calming effect on people. They are often used as therapy dogs in hospitals, nursing homes and schools to help people cope with stress and anxiety.
  4. Police dogs: Mastiffs are strong and powerful dogs and are sometimes used as police dogs. They are trained to apprehend suspects and can also be used to detect drugs and explosives.
  5. Livestock guardians: Mastiffs are used as livestock guardians on farms and ranches. They are trained to protect livestock from predators such as coyotes and wolves.

Overall, Mastiffs are versatile dogs that can be used for a variety of purposes. While they make great pets, they also have a long history of being used as working dogs.

Guard Dogs

Yes, Mastiffs make excellent guard dogs due to their size, strength and protective nature. They are known for being loyal and devoted to their families and will not hesitate to defend their loved ones if they perceive a threat. However, it is important to note that proper training and socialization are crucial for Mastiffs to become effective guard dogs. They need to learn how to differentiate between real threats and harmless situations and how to respond appropriately. Additionally, Mastiffs require regular exercise and mental stimulation to maintain their physical and mental well-being.

Where Are They Found?

Mastiffs are popular in many countries around the world, but some of the countries where they are most commonly found include:

1. United States6. France
2. United Kingdom7. Spain
3. Canada8. Italy
4. Australia9. Russia
5. Germany10. China

These countries have a large number of Mastiff breeders and enthusiasts and the breed is often used for various purposes such as guarding, hunting and as family pets.

Climate

Mastiffs are best suited to a moderate climate with mild temperatures. They have a thick coat that can make them uncomfortable in hot weather and they are not well-suited to extreme cold either. They are also prone to heatstroke, so it is important to keep them cool and hydrated in warmer weather. Overall, a climate with moderate temperatures and low humidity is ideal for Mastiffs.

Population

It is difficult to determine the exact number of Mastiffs in the world as there is no centralized registry or database for all Mastiffs. However, it is estimated that there are tens of thousands of Mastiffs worldwide, with the highest populations found in the United States, United Kingdom and China.

Physical Appearance:

Mastiffs are large and muscular dogs with a powerful build. They have a broad head with a short muzzle and droopy jowls. Their ears are small and folded over and their eyes are dark and expressive. Mastiffs have a thick, short coat that can come in a variety of colors, including fawn, apricot and brindle. They have a wide chest and a broad, sturdy frame that gives them a commanding presence. Despite their size, Mastiffs are graceful and agile, with a confident and dignified gait. Overall, Mastiffs are imposing yet gentle giants with a distinctive appearance that commands respect.

Coat:

Colours:

Mastiffs can come in a variety of colors, including:

1. Fawn: This is the most common color for Mastiffs. It ranges from light to dark tan.

2. Brindle: This is a pattern of dark stripes on a lighter background color. Brindle Mastiffs can have a fawn or apricot base color.

3. Apricot: This is a light orange or yellowish color.

4. Black: This is a rare color for Mastiffs, but it does occur.

5. Blue: This is another rare color for Mastiffs. It is a grayish-blue color.

6. Harlequin: This is a pattern of black spots on a white background.

7. Mantle: This is a pattern of black and white on the body, with a black mask on the face.

8. Merle: This is a pattern of dark patches on a lighter background color, with a marbled or mottled appearance.

Hair/Fur Length:

Mastiffs have short to medium-length hair. Their coat is dense, smooth and close-lying. They shed moderately throughout the year and require regular brushing to keep their coat healthy and shiny.

Shedding:

Yes, Mastiffs do shed. They have a short, dense coat that sheds moderately throughout the year, with heavier shedding occurring during seasonal changes. Regular brushing and grooming can help to minimize shedding and keep their coat healthy and shiny.

Grooming:

The Mastiff has a short and dense coat that requires minimal grooming. They shed moderately throughout the year and heavily during shedding season. Brushing them once a week with a slicker brush or a rubber curry brush can help remove loose hair and distribute natural oils throughout their coat. They only need to be bathed when necessary, such as when they get dirty or smelly.

Mastiffs do not require haircuts as their coat does not grow long. However, they may need occasional trimming of their nails, cleaning of their ears and brushing of their teeth to maintain their overall health and hygiene.

Hypoallergenic:

No, Mastiffs are not considered hypoallergenic. They have a short, dense coat that sheds moderately year-round, which can trigger allergies in some people. Additionally, Mastiffs produce dander, which is a common allergen. If you have allergies, it is recommended that you spend time with a Mastiff before bringing one into your home to see if you have a reaction.

Speed:

Mastiffs are not fast dogs and their maximum running speed is only around 20-25 kph (12-15 mph). However, they are more suited for short bursts of speed rather than long-distance running.

Health:

Mastiffs are generally healthy dogs, but like all breeds, they are prone to certain health issues. Some of the most common health issues Mastiffs are faced with include:

  • Hip dysplasia: a genetic condition where the hip joint doesn’t develop properly, causing pain and mobility issues.
  • Elbow dysplasia: a genetic condition where the elbow joint doesn’t develop properly, causing pain and mobility issues.
  • Bloat: a life-threatening condition where the stomach fills with gas and twists, cutting off blood flow to vital organs.
  • Heart disease: a range of conditions that affect the heart, including dilated cardiomyopathy and aortic stenosis.
  • Cystinuria: a genetic condition where the dog’s urine contains high levels of cystine, which can lead to bladder stones and urinary tract infections.

Teeth:

Mastiffs typically have 42 teeth, which is the same number of teeth as most other dog breeds.

Eyesight:

Mastiffs have average eyesight compared to other dog breeds. However, they have a strong sense of smell and hearing, which are their primary senses for hunting and tracking.

Nipples:

Mastiffs usually have six to eight nipples. The exact number can vary within this range, but six to eight is the general count for this breed.

Gestation:

Litter Size:

The typical litter size for Mastiffs is between 6 to 8 puppies, but it can vary from 1 to 13 puppies depending on the individual dog and breeding.

Gestation Period:

The gestation period for Mastiffs is typically around 63 days, although it can range from 58 to 68 days.

Heat:

Female Mastiffs typically go into heat or estrus, every 6-8 months. The length of their heat cycle can vary but usually lasts around 3 weeks.

Male vs Female:

There are several differences between male and female Mastiffs, including:

  1. Size: Male Mastiffs are generally larger and heavier than females. Males can weigh up to 200 pounds, while females typically weigh between 120 and 170 pounds.
  2. Temperament: Male Mastiffs tend to be more dominant and assertive, while females are often more independent and reserved.
  3. Energy level: Male Mastiffs are generally more active and playful than females, who tend to be more relaxed and laid-back.
  4. Health issues: Female Mastiffs are more prone to certain health issues, such as reproductive problems and urinary tract infections.
  5. Coat: Male Mastiffs often have thicker and longer coats than females, although this can vary from dog to dog.
  6. Training: Male Mastiffs can be more challenging to train due to their dominant personalities, while females may be more receptive to training.

Tips and Advice:

Mastiffs are large, powerful dogs that require special care and attention. As a responsible owner, it’s important to provide your Mastiff with the proper care to ensure they live a happy and healthy life. Here are some tips and advice for caring for a Mastiff:

  • Provide a balanced diet: Mastiffs are prone to obesity, so it’s important to feed them a balanced diet that meets their nutritional needs without overfeeding them.
  • Exercise regularly: Mastiffs need regular exercise to maintain their physical and mental health. Daily walks and playtime are essential for keeping them active and happy.
  • Groom regularly: Mastiffs have a short, dense coat that requires regular grooming to keep it healthy and clean. Brushing their coat once a week and bathing them as needed will help keep their coat in good condition.
  • Monitor their health: Mastiffs are prone to certain health issues, such as hip dysplasia and bloat. Regular check-ups with a veterinarian can help detect and treat any health issues early on.
  • Provide a comfortable living space: Mastiffs need a comfortable living space that’s large enough for them to move around in. A soft bed and plenty of toys can help keep them comfortable and entertained.
  • Socialize early: Mastiffs can be protective of their family, so it’s important to socialize them early on to prevent any aggressive behavior towards strangers or other animals.
  • Train consistently: Mastiffs are intelligent dogs that respond well to consistent training. Positive reinforcement training can help them learn basic commands and good behavior.
  • Be patient: Mastiffs are known for their stubbornness, so it’s important to be patient and consistent with their training and care. With time and patience, they can become loyal and well-behaved companions.

Food:

Mastiffs have a large appetite due to their size and energy levels. They can eat up to 6-8 cups of high-quality dog food per day, depending on their age, weight and activity level. However, it’s important to monitor their food intake and avoid overfeeding, as Mastiffs are prone to obesity.

Mastiffs can be food-oriented dogs, especially if they are not trained properly. They may become possessive of their food and can show aggression towards other dogs or people who approach their food bowl. It’s important to establish a feeding routine and teach them to share their food and toys from an early age. Training and socialization can help prevent food-related aggression in Mastiffs.

Facts:

Mastiffs are a large and powerful breed of dog that have been around for centuries. Here are three interesting facts about Mastiffs:

  1. Mastiffs were originally bred for hunting and guarding livestock. They were often used to protect sheep and cattle from predators such as wolves and bears.
  2. Mastiffs are one of the largest dog breeds in the world. They can weigh up to 220 pounds and stand up to 30 inches tall at the shoulder.
  3. Mastiffs have a calm and gentle temperament, which makes them great family pets. Despite their size, they are known for being loyal, affectionate and protective of their owners.

Names:

Mastiffs are majestic and powerful dogs with a calm and gentle nature. When selecting names for Mastiffs, it is often suitable to consider names that reflect their strength, their regal appearance or their loyal and protective personality. Here are 15 names that would be a good fit for a Mastiff:

  1. Titan: A name that signifies strength and power, fitting for the Mastiff’s imposing size and muscular build.
  2. Duchess: This name embodies the Mastiff’s regal and noble presence, symbolizing their dignity and grace.
  3. Thor: Signifying power and might, this name matches the Mastiff’s strong and commanding personality.
  4. Athena: A name that conveys wisdom and courage, reflecting the Mastiff’s protective and loyal instincts.
  5. Maximus: This name signifies greatness and strength, matching the Mastiff’s impressive and dominant presence.
  6. Bella: Signifying beauty and grace, this name matches the Mastiff’s gentle and elegant demeanor.
  7. Hercules: Inspired by the mythological hero, this name reflects the Mastiff’s robust and powerful nature.
  8. Luna: A name that embodies the Mastiff’s calm and serene personality, symbolizing their peaceful nature.
  9. Brutus: This name conveys strength and bravery, fitting for the Mastiff’s protective and courageous character.
  10. Cleo: A name that represents the Mastiff’s regal and majestic nature, signifying their noble presence.
  11. Bear: Signifying power and protection, this name matches the Mastiff’s strong and guardian-like qualities.
  12. Stella: This name reflects the Mastiff’s calm and steady demeanor, symbolizing their composed nature.
  13. Bruno: A strong and robust name that complements the Mastiff’s sturdy and muscular build.
  14. Grace: This name embodies the Mastiff’s gentle and graceful personality, symbolizing their elegance.
  15. Maximillian: A name that signifies greatness and leadership, fitting for the Mastiff’s commanding presence.

These names capture the essence of Mastiffs, highlighting their strength, regal appearance and loyal nature. They provide a fitting identity for these majestic and gentle companions.

Famous:

Throughout history, there have been several Mastiffs that have made a name for themselves through their impressive feats, appearances in movies and ownership by famous people. Some of the most famous Mastiffs of all time include:

  • Zorba – The heaviest dog ever recorded, weighing in at 343 pounds. Zorba was a Mastiff from England who held the Guinness World Record for the heaviest dog from 1987 until his death in 1989.
  • Beasley – The lovable Mastiff from the movie “Turner & Hooch” starring Tom Hanks. Beasley played the role of Hooch, a slobbery but loyal police dog who helps solve a crime.
  • Goliath – A Mastiff owned by the famous wrestler Hulk Hogan. Goliath was known for his massive size and was often seen accompanying Hogan to events.
  • Martha – The winner of the 2017 World’s Ugliest Dog Contest, Martha was a Mastiff with droopy jowls and a sweet disposition.
  • Hercules – A Mastiff owned by the famous actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Hercules was often seen in Johnson’s social media posts and was known for his impressive size and gentle nature.
  • Kell – A Mastiff who served in the British Army during World War I. Kell was awarded the Dickin Medal, the highest honor for animals serving in military conflict, for his bravery in detecting gas attacks.

These famous Mastiffs have left their mark on history through their impressive feats, appearances in movies and ownership by famous individuals.

Summary:

A Mastiff is a large breed of dog that is known for its massive size and strength. They are typically calm, gentle and loyal dogs that are great with families and children. Mastiffs have a long history dating back to ancient times where they were used as guard dogs and for hunting. They were also used in battles and were even trained to fight in arenas. Today, Mastiffs are primarily kept as pets and have an affectionate and protective nature. They require moderate exercise and a lot of space to move around, making them better suited for larger homes with yards. Mastiffs are also renownwed for their drooling and snoring, which can be a turn-off for some people. Overall, Mastiffs make great pets for those who are looking for a loyal and protective companion that is also gentle and affectionate.