The Mastiff (often referred to as the English Mastiff) is huge. In the eighteenth century, they were given this description: "As a lion is to a cat, so is a Mastiff compared to a dog".
This is a powerful, muscular dog with a smooth, short coat which comes in golden, tiger or brindle. Their head is large and square with a black mask and soft jowls.
They have a long history. During the time of the Roman invasion of Britain, some were taken back to Rome for fighting in the Arenas but their main use, over the years has been for guarding and pulling weights. A natural guard: watchful, intelligent and calm, they will not warn of danger, they seldom bark, neither are they aggressive, their tendency is to simply hold an intruder. Their size makes it important to ensure that they are trained to behave impeccably.
Mastiffs are often good with children and other animals but may be wary of strangers. They are inclined to be sedentary indoors so a good daily walk is important to keep them fit. The short coat is easy to care for with occasional brushing and bathing.
They are prone to hip and elbow dysplasia and bloat and some suffer from CHD, gastric torsion, ectropion, PPM, vaginal hyperplasia and PRA. Many also tend to drool, wheeze and snore.
Watch our videos about some of the dog breeds in the Working group