The Old English Mastiff is calm and quiet (as an adult!) but he belongs in a roomy home with a spacious fenced yard, so that his massive body has stretching room. To stay fit, he needs daily walks (whether he seems to want them or not), but he isn't a jogging partner.
Most English Mastiffs are polite with everyone, but there is timidity (even extreme shyness) in some lines, and aggression in others. To ensure a stable temperament, English Mastiffs need earlier and more frequent socialization than many other breeds. This socialization should continue throughout their life. Watchfulness should be discouraged, as it's best for all concerned if a Mastiff intimidates by his presence alone, rather than by his behavior.
Mastiffs love children. That said, they are large, active dogs and can accidentally knock a toddler down with a swipe of the tail. They're best suited to homes with older children. Bear in mind as well that Mastiffs are not ponies, and children cannot ride them. Your Mastiff can be injured if children try to ride him. Always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's sleeping or eating or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog should ever be left unsupervised with a child. In general, Mastiffs will tolerate other dogs and cats, especially if they've been raised with them. If you're adding a second adult Mastiff to your family, you may want to consider getting one of the opposite sex to avoid any arguments over who's top dog.
The mastiff can be a noble, loving family pet, but his zealous guardianship requires moderation through socialization and obedience training. It is crucial to expose a mastiff to as many new people, places and situations as possible, particularly when during puppy hood.
Couch potatoes may find a kindred spirit in the mastiff, but both the dog and his people will be fitter and happier if they get regular exercise.
Mastiff guardians should consider buying bibs for their dogs and earplugs for themselves when they buy dog supplies. The mastiff is a well-known drooler and tends to snore loudly.
Grooming is quick and easy. The short coat requires little more than a weekly brushing and a quick wipe with a towel or chamois cloth.
As is true with other large-breed dogs, mastiffs generally do not live as long as smaller dogs do. The average lifespan is 8 to 10 years.
The Mastiff is, like all very large dogs, self-confident and calm. It has a gentle nature, and is affectionate and playful, although toddlers should not be left alone with them. It makes an excellent watchdog, and will not let strangers into the home until a family member indicates it is all right. Mastiffs should be socialized as puppies, otherwise they will become dog-aggressive. Obedience training can be a challenge.
As with all large dogs, they are prone to hip and elbow dysplasia. Bloat (gastric torsion) is also a problem. Other illnesses are Osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), a joint problem, ectropion (eyelid turns inwards), eye problems such as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). And persistent pupillary membranes (PPM). Properly cared for, the Mastiff can live around 12 years.
Yes we adopted a mastiff from a shelter and I had never had any experience with the breed! We were not disappointed with him.I always had german shepherds before,and he stold my heart! I want to have another one after we move.I have a german shepherd (got as a pup)since we got him.He is so good with the shepherd and the cats.The Mastiff is an excellent breed that will always be special to me!!
Please be careful with older shelter rescues. I took in a Mastiff that was 3 years old ---- had him over 6 months, 95% of the time a GREAT dog !! Loved him to pieces, but he did have a domience issue, especially towards women. I found out he was not well socialized with people ( kept apart in a seperate room) with his former family. We let him have the run of the house, showered him with affection ( he was needy and loved the attention and we loved giving it) But--he would constantly try to assert his authority (especially towards my self and my daughter. ) and would try to growl us down when he didn't want to do something. He did not like to have his ears touched, but one day I needed to clean the ear as he had a sore that needed attention. He tore my hand open, I spent 4 days in the hosptial and almost lost my thumb. Not too gentle and not too loving.
English Mastiffs are one of the largest breeds out there, and if you’ve got one, you’ll know they’re big eaters! They may be gentle giants, but they require a lot of calories each day to maintain their energy levels and weight. To meet their nutritional needs properly, you’ve got to give them the right food, and lucky for you, I’ve looked at a lot of options to find just the right one for you and your dog.
I love dogs but mastiffs aren't a very smart breed..