The Bull Mastiff – Is it the Right Breed For You? Pros and Cons of Ownership

The Bull Mastiff is a very large breed of dog. Tall, stocky, confident, athletic and strong. But in contrast they are well known to be one of the gentlest, people loving, loyal, docile and faithful breeds. Perhaps the perfect family dog…

In the 1800’s the Bull Mastiff breed was used to guard large, rich country estates, assisting in catching poachers or thieves. They were successful in this role because of their reluctance to bark, thus allowing them to sneak up and use their weight to pin down their victim until their owners told them to release. As a rule they do not bite, which means that rough and tumble with your dog is safe – albeit a bit like wrestling match! And If your Bull Mastiff does bark, go and see why, they could be warning you of something important, they are great guard dogs.

Family dog

Bull Mastiffs are also known as the ‘babysitters’ of the dog world, widely regarded as being one of the safest breeds to have around children or babies, their calm, attitude means they tolerate being pulled around, climbed on and generally harassed and never lose control. However they can be clumsy and could quite easily knock a small child over with a swish of their tail, so do be careful!

They’re colouring is described as fawn (a light beige) red (a medium brown with a very slight red tinge) or brindle which is a mixture of brown and black. Male’s average size is 25inches tall, and weight about 50-60kgs. Bitches are generally smaller size 20-25inches tall weight about 45-55kgs

Bull Mastiffs can be quite lazy, a ten minute walk will satisfy them on a cold rainy day, but they will still love nothing better than a family day out in the woods or on the beach. Never ‘over walk’ your dog even if they look like they could go on and on, they are prone to hip and elbow dysplasia which can be triggered by too much exercise. Other health problems can include arthritis, bloat and lymphoma cancer.

Family always comes first to a Bull mastiff, but if socialised properly they mix well with people and other dogs, sniffing and playing with other dogs, with people they do not jump up, which is comforting given their size! They do not however mix very well with their own breed which is worth noting if out on a walk. Also when walking your dog, be mindful of other people who may feel uncomfortable at the sight of a large breed dog off a lead, especially if they have a small dog or children with them, always be ready to call your dog to your side and be confident they will come immediately when called, otherwise it is best to keep them on the lead at all times. Extendable leads still give your dog a lot of leeway.

Taking your Bull mastiff to training classes when young is the best way of letting them interact with other people and dogs, and how to behave within a community in a safe and friendly manner. They learn well and enjoy pleasing their owners by doing as they are told.

Watch out for your furniture!

Bull mastiffs love to chew and play, if you don’t want them to practice on your home, furniture and possessions, then you need to ensure they have plenty of their own toys to distract them. Because they have such strong jaws make sure you do some research and choose a toy that will last more than a few minutes before it’s destroyed! Look around your house for cheap alternatives, old shoes, tennis balls, plastic bottles are all great fun for them.

A large cage is a must for a Bull Mastiff, its useful to transport them around in the car, and its somewhere where they can relax and snooze indoors – you will find that snoozing is a large part of their day and second only in importance to eating! When it comes to their food and personal space don’t let them get territorial, there should be no place they can go and you can’t and no bowl of food you can’t take off them – test them on this so they know who is the ‘leader of the pack’.

If you are looking for dogs for sale, a lot of people who choose a Bull Mastiff as a family pet, never buy another breed of dog again (including me) they are a wonderful asset to any home, and make a loyal, caring and often entertaining pet. However, they are big, need a confident owner and careful training and socialisation. Never take the decision to buy a Bull Mastiff lightly.

Source by Nigel R Frith

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