Discussion in 'General' started by wsmc42, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. wsmc42

    wsmc42 Well-Known Member

    Anyone have feedback or knowledge on mastiffs or more precisely, mastiff/ shepherd mixes? My wife and I decided to start looking for another dog after losing our shepherd mix last summer. We found a puppy at the local humane society that she fell in love with. He is part of a litter that they have, but they are not exactly sure of the breeds. They think they are shepherd mastiff mixes, which is probably right. This pup looks a bit more shepherd while his litter mates look more mastiff. I don't know much about the mastiff breed other than they are big. Anyone have experience with these? How easily do they train? What is their energy level like? How well do they get along withother dogs? What problems are inherent to the breed? Thanks.
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012
  2. Gigantic

    Gigantic Maverick Moto Media

    they're big, they're clumsy, they eat a lot and they drool all over the place. They're loving and loyal, perhaps too loyal and protective. They're not good with strangers, particularly if you're not present, which may be a good thing, maybe not. With shepherd mixed in, they should be ratehr intelligent and very trainable. Because of their size, they're prone to othorpedic issues like hip dysplasia. they do not live very long; 9 is quite old.
  3. auminer

    auminer Renaissance Redneck

    Mastiffs tend to be gentle giants. Expect him not to really understand how big he is while he's young, so careful if there are young kids in the house, as they could knock the snot out of a kid just playing with it. Be sure you fully understand that you could very well end up with a 150+ pound dog if you're talking about an English Mastiff mix.

    Generally, they tend to calm down & get couch potato after a couple-few years, though the shepherd mix might keep him more active. Both breeds tend toward hip dyplasia but maybe the mix breeding will help offset that danger. Lastly, Mastiff life expectancies tend to be on the short side. :(

    EDIT* Yeah, what Gigantic said... :D
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012
  4. Heikes

    Heikes Well-Known Member

    The English Mastiff's I've been around were fine with strangers, but like stated, very very lazy. They don't need a big yard because they just sleep on the couch all day. They are very lovoing, and they think they are lap dogs.

    I second everything Gigantic said, ecept the ones I've been around were fine with strangers. It's all in how they're socialized.
  5. cincigp

    cincigp Well-Known Member

    My sister and brother-in-law have an english mastiff that is about 5 years old now. Their 4 kids can do anything to her (jump on her stomach, pull her ears, ride on her back), and if she doesn't like what they are doing she just walks away. She is very big and tries to be gentle, but she can be a bit clumsy at times. Her activity level really depends on what is going on around her environment. They had a border collie for a while and when we would take our schnauzer mix over all three would chase each other around the yard for hours. On another occasion my sister forgot to put the mastiff in her crate one day and set the security system. They came back 6 hours later and the dog hadn't even moved enough to set off a motion detector. She is extremely loyal, and is fine with anyone the family is fine with, but if she senses that the family is uneasy she goes into protect mode very fast. From my experience, they seem like great dogs as long as you don't mind their size, appetite, and constant drool on everything.
  6. novice201

    novice201 "I'm a robot chicken!"

    Everything Gigantic said. Our female is an exception...she's very sweet and outgoing. Out on walks she gets upset if people don't stop to pet her (which happens a lot...we get tons of attention when out, be prepared!). They are bull strong and don't know it. She regularly walks off with the dining room table (a big oak monstrosity) when she stands up under it. She also took me down the other day playing, didn't even realize she'd run into me! And she's small for the breed.

    And hell yeah on the drool, we keep towels all over the house. The hip thing is true, the mastiff sites even say not to run with them. Our girl is pretty lean for the breed and hopefully we can keep her that way. Far as temperment, they can vary from aloof to protective to sweet. If you're looking at a pup, you should be fine as long as you socialize well and go "zero tolerance" on protective issues.
    Good luck!

    Edit: Angie is also fine with kids, loves them actually. Although in our smallish house she occaisionally pins my three-year old against the wall when trying to make a u-turn. :)

    Here's ours...
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012
  7. Umbrella girl #1

    Umbrella girl #1 Well-Known Member

    They are great dogs. Neighbor up the street had one. His name was DOG...
    He was sooooooo cool. Just remember to check with your Home Owners Insurance. Some will not allow for you to have that dog. Either they will
    cancel or not write you at all.... I think that is a big joke. Dog was the best
    and if he did attack you it was a slobery and kissy face that you got....
  8. antirich

    antirich Well-Known Member

    A client of mine has three of them. Big, lovable dogs, but very protective of his wife.

    His only issue is when the two younger ones fight (both alpha males). It doesn't happen often, but when it does, he often gets hurt trying to break them up. 300 total pounds of flying muscle and slobber does a number on the house as well.

    Personally, I think a dog's social manners has more to do with the upbringing. Getting any animal acquainted with more people is the best for socialization. Too many around here keep their animals locked up out of fear, which I think backfires later on in life.
  9. cobra2497

    cobra2497 Well-Known Member

    I have an english mastiff I rescued from SSMR. They are very very intelligent dogs. They do fine with strangers as long as you socialize them (like with any dog.) hip dysplasia is known to be an issue but the bigger issue with them is knee issues. People usually feed mastiffs way too much food to fill them out not realizing they aren't suppose to be that wide it's really bad on there legs. Mine eats a 1 1/2 cups in the morning and then same for evening. I've had more active dogs eat more then my mastiff eats. Mainly cause she just lays around sleeping a lot. Usually plays in 10 minute burst then tired out for awhile.

    This is Leda hanging out with a buddies pit mix:


  10. pucksdown

    pucksdown WERA #9

    They make good lap warmers as dogs have warmer body temps than humans. Mine used to climb in my lap when I watched TV in the winter and keep me quite warm for quite a while, as he was hard to get off. Their bite force is about 4 times that of a shepherd, my two had sort of poor vision. The meter reader refused to read the meter when he was around. Mine had the worst farts of any human/animal I had ever been around (probably the food). And many people call a bull mastiff just a 'mastiff' when it is much shorter, more like a rottweiller. Hip dysplasia got to both of mine.
  11. TwinRider79

    TwinRider79 Good Ol' One Eye

    I have a 7yr old Bully. He's probably one of the best dogs we've ever owned. He sleeps probably close to 20hrs a day. He is far from territorial and is great with other dogs, even when they come over to the house. He was never a chewer growing up and seems to have no interest in toys. Mine doesn't drool too bad, unless he's waiting for a treat. Here's a pic with by buddies Doby on the way to Tally and another pic showing their true demeanor. Mine always has to be near someone. Doesn't seem to like being in a room by himself.
  12. cobra2497

    cobra2497 Well-Known Member

    actually an english mastiff is a mastiff :up:

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