Providing the proper balance of exercise. Young Bull mastiffs need enough exercise to keep them lean and healthy, but not so much that their soft growing bones, joints, and ligaments become over-stressed and damaged. Adult Bull mastiffs need more exercise to keep them in shape, but not in hot or humid weather for fear of overheating. The proper amount of exercise can be difficult to regulate in giant breeds Since you have to minimize their exercise, young Bull mastiffs can be very rambunctious. They will romp with uncoordinated gawkiness all over your house. You need to substitute extra quantities of companionship and supervision. Otherwise, left alone, young Bull mastiffs become bored and destructive — and their powerful jaws can literally destroy your living room.
Providing enough socialization. Most Bull mastiffs have protective instincts toward strangers. They need extensive exposure to friendly people so they learn to recognize the normal behaviors of “good guys.” Then they can recognize the difference when someone acts abnormally. Without careful socialization, they may be suspicious of everyone, which could lead to biting. Some Bull mastiffs go in the opposite direction — without enough socialization, they become fearful of strangers, which can lead to defensive biting.
Animal aggression. Many Bull mastiffs will not tolerate another dog of the same sex, and some won’t tolerate the opposite sex either. Some Bull mastiffs have strong instincts to chase and seize cats and other fleeing creatures. If anything goes wrong in the breeding, socializing, training, handling, or management of this breed, it is capable of seriously injuring or killing other animals.
The strong temperament. Bull mastiffs are not Golden Retrievers. They have an independent mind of their own and are not pushovers to raise and train. Many Bull mastiffs are willful, obstinate, and dominant (they want to be the boss) and will make you prove that you can make them do things. You must show them, through absolute consistency, that you mean what you say.
The Bullmastiff is courageous, loyal, calm, and loving with those it knows. It has a very strong protective instinct and will defend its owners against anything it perceives as a threat. However, it does not normally attack to protect. Instead, it knocks the intruder over with its massive size and pins them to the ground, or, will simply stand in front of the stranger/intruder and refuse to let them pass. Bullmastiffs become intensely attached to their families and do best when they can live inside with them. Their protective instinct combined with their great size and natural wariness of strangers means that early socialization is a must. The Bullmastiff may or may not get along well with other dogs. Occasionally, females in heat will also not get along with other females. The Bullmastiff gets along well with children and is very loving towards them. Parental supervision must be maintained when they are with children; they may knock smaller children down accidentally because of their large size.
Shedding. Bull mastiffs shed more than you might think. Their short, coarse hairs come off on your hands when you pet them, and stick tenaciously to your carpeting, upholstery, and clothing.
Bull mastiff sounds. Because of the short face, Bull mastiffs snort, grunt, and snore loudly. The sounds are endearing to some people; nerve-wracking to others.
Slobbering. Most people are not prepared for how much Bull mastiffs slobber and drool, especially after eating or drinking. When they shake their heads, you will be toweling saliva and slime off your clothes, furniture, and walls.
Gassiness (flatulence) that can send you running for cover. Fortunately, Bull mastiffs who are fed a natural diet of real meat and other fresh foods have much less trouble with gassiness.
Serious health problems. The lifespan of a Bull mastiff is short and an alarming number are crippled by bone and joint diseases and/or succumb to cancer in middle age.
Legal liabilities. Bull mastiffs may be targeted for “banning” in certain areas, or refusal of homeowner insurance policies. Your friends and neighbors may be uncomfortable around this breed. In this day and age, the legal liabilities of owning any breed that looks intimidating and has a history as a guard dog should be seriously considered. People are quicker to sue if such a dog does anything even remotely questionable.
The Bull mastiff is very powerfully built, but not cumbersome, with a broad wrinkled head and fairly short, square, dark muzzle (about 1/3 the length of the whole head). The nose is black with large nostrils. The dark hazel, medium-sized eyes should have an alert, intelligent expression. The v-shaped wide-set ears are pendant and dark colored. The teeth should meet in a level or slightly undershot bite. The short back is straight and level between the withers and the loin. The tapering tail is set high and reaches to the hocks. The short, slightly rough coat comes in brindle, fawn, or red, often with black markings on the head.
Height and Weight-
Height: Dogs 25-27 inches (63-69 cm) Bitches 24-27 inches (61-66cm)
Weight: Dogs 110-133 pounds (50-60kg) Bitches 100-120 pounds (45-54kg)
Bull mastiffs will do okay in an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised. It is relatively inactive indoors and a small yard will do. They can not tolerate extremes of temperatures.
These dogs tend to be lazy so provide regular, moderate exercise. Be sure to exercise and not overfeed him, as he tends to put on weight. They need to be taken for a long daily walk.
Under 10 years
4-13 puppies with average being 8
The short-haired, slightly rough coat is easy to groom. Comb and brush with a firm bristle brush, and shampoo only when necessary. There is little shedding with this breed. Check the feet regularly because they carry a lot of weight, and trim the nails.
The Bull mastiff was obtained by crossing 60% Mastiffs with 40% Bulldogs in the country of England. Mastiff Bulldog types can be found in records as early back as 1795. In 1924 Bull mastiffs began to be judged. Three generations of breeding of Bull mastiffs was required for Bull mastiffs to be registered as purebred. The Bull mastiff was used as a gamekeeper’s dog to track down, tackle and hold poachers. The dogs were fierce and threatening, but were trained not to bite the intruders. When the need for gamekeeper’s dogs decreased, the dark brindle dogs so good for night camouflage gave way in popularity to the lighter fawn coloration. It has been prized as a hunting guard, as an aid in army and police work, and is used as a watchdog by the Diamond Society of South Africa. Today’s Bull mastiff is a reliable family companion and guardian. It enjoys living with the family, with whom it comforts itself well.
Mastiff, AKC Working
Continental Kennel Club, Federation Cynologique International, American Kennel Club, Kennel Club of Great Britain, Canadian Kennel Club, Australian National Kennel Club, National Kennel Club, New Zealand Kennel Club, American Pet Registry Inc., American Canine Registry