The bullmastiff (s) history began in 19th century England where it was developed to keep large estates and game free from poachers. Fearless and confident yet sweet-natured and gentle, the breed makes a great family companion.
Natural guardians, bullmastiffs do not bark much and require minimal exercise and grooming. For larger dogs, the Bullmastiff does well in an apartment as well as a home.
Bullmastiff – Vital Stats:
Dog Breed Group: Working Dogs
Height: 24 to 27 inches at the shoulder
Weight: 100 to 130 pounds
Life Span: 8 to 10 year
Colors: Brindle, Fawn, Red
FCI Number: 157
History Of Bullmastiff
The origin of the bullmastiff is unclear. In the eighteenth century, in some regions of England, the Old English Mastiff and the English Bulldog were commonly interbred to produce dogs suitable for guarding people and their property. By the early twentieth century, the breed was widely used as an aid to game wardens in poaching control.
They were bred by gamekeepers for strength, size, and speed using crosses of the tough, heavy, and aggressive nineteenth-century bulldog with the larger, stronger, less aggressive mastiff. As a result, the bullmastiff is known as the gamekeeper’s night dog.
The Bullmastiff was recognized as a breed by The Kennel Club in 1924. Dogs must be descended from Bullmastiff stock for at least four generations without input from Bulldog or Mastiff; Cross-bred animals could not be registered.
The American Kennel Club recognized it in 1934. It was definitively accepted by the Federation Sinologic Internationale in 1955.
In 1928, the diamond mining company De Beers imported bullmastiffs into South Africa to guard the mines.
|Friendliness: 3 Points||Exercise Needs: 2 Points||Health Issues: 4 Points|
|Barking Tendencies: 3 Points||Grooming Needs: 2 Points||Shedding Level: 2 Points|
|Training Needs: 4 Points||Good With Kids: 3 Points||Good With Cats: 2 Points|
|Good As A Service Dog: 1 Point||Good For Apartments: 2 Points||Biting Tendencies: 3 Points|
|Energy Level: 3 Points||Good With Other Dogs: 2 Points||Playfulness: 2 Points|
|Sensitive to Cold Weather: 2 Points||Sensitive to Warm Weather: 3 Points||Good Pet Parents: 2 Points|
Elegant and strapping, with its large head held high and focused, the Bullmastiff is an attractive dog. Its strong, wide legs support a deep chest, broad shoulders, and a sloping back.
It has a square, muscular body inherited from its Mastiff ancestor that sways slightly as its tapered tail whips at full speed.
His bulldog ancestry is visible in the wrinkles on his forehead and the folds on the short black stub of his muzzle. It’s really not as sad as it looks – quite the opposite. But in true bully style, his jowls have slightly frowned, and his round deep-set brown eyes look a little sad.
The Bullmastiff’s sleek, dense and short coat is usually fawn or red, with black accents surrounding its eyes and inking its V-shaped ears as it points down the side of its hat.
Males weigh between 110-130 pounds and females weigh 100-120 pounds. The bullmastiff meets you at hip height or higher, the crown of its head slipping under your palm. It is very common for this large working dog breed to stand 27 inches at the withers.
Bullmastiffs are loving, happy-go-lucky dogs who form deep bonds with their humans and are loyal companions. A cross between the Old English Mastiff and the courageous Bulldog, the Bullmastiff dog is the perfect combination of their traits and makes a loving guard dog.
Even with their guarding instincts, these big softies aren’t much of a barker. They were bred to find, track and pin down predators, and to achieve this mission they had to remain silent – indeed, they are the ninjas of the dog world.
You don’t know they’re around unless they’re usually leaning against your leg or trying to curl themselves into your lap. And don’t even think of leaving them out alone. They will be waiting at the back door for you to let them in. With their lovable personalities, it’s no wonder they are the 51st most popular dog in America.
Bullmastiffs are not really aggressive, nor are they known to bite. Like most working breeds, they are confident and confident protectors of their domains and can be wary of strangers. So, start training your Bullmastiff puppy early to get them used to have visitors in your home.
Because they are large dogs who often think they are toy-sized, they can be a bit clumsy around small children, cats, and small dogs. So, be sure to be careful when your bullmastiff dog is around anyone younger than them.
Bullmastiffs are gentle and affectionate with family members. Their generally calm, easy-going nature makes them good dogs for families with reasonably well-behaved children. However, the Bullmastiff’s calm demeanor with family members can change when a stranger enters the picture. These dogs are quite suspicious of people outside the family.
For all its family-oriented loyalty, the Bullmastiff is no pushover. He can be an independent thinker, which can make training a challenge.
He may be less tolerant of animal members of the family than his human members. Caution may be in order if you are considering adding a bullmastiff to your menagerie.
A UK survey based on the lifespan of 96 bullmastiffs found an average age of 7.5 years.
Health concerns in the breed include hip and elbow dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, bloat, and cancer, with relatively high incidences of lymphoma and mast cell tumors. Bullmastiffs are susceptible to certain hereditary diseases, including:
- Hip dysplasia affects 24.5% of individuals
- Elbow dysplasia, affecting 13.8% of individuals,
- Entropion and hypothyroidism affect 2.8% of individuals,
- Progressive retinal atrophy is a particular problem, as the trait is autosomal dominant. (Recently this has been questioned by another medical team and it has been shown that some bullmastiffs carry the autosomal recessive PRA gene. In America, this is being investigated by the American Bullmastiff Health and Research Committee, and the DNA Optigen test is only for dominants. genes, so it is considered insufficient at this time.)
The Bullmastiff is a low-energy dog that can adapt well to most home environments, although its size makes them best suited for a home with a fenced yard.
In addition to protecting them from roaming and traffic, fences also prevent bullmastiffs from expanding their territory outside their home and yard, which may cause them to try to keep other people and dogs from entering the area.
Their short muzzles make bullmastiffs susceptible to heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Avoid exercising during the heat of the day and keep them indoors in hot or humid weather. Make sure they always have access to shade and fresh water when they are outside.
Start training your Bullmastiff puppy as soon as you bring it home, while they are still a manageable size. Enroll in puppy socialization classes to get them used to being around other dogs and people. This is extremely important for bullmastiffs, who can become aggressive towards other dogs and people they don’t know if they are not taught manners.
In addition to puppy kindergarten and regular obedience classes, take your bullmastiff to parks, outdoor shopping malls, and other places where he can learn to meet people and get used to new experiences, sights, and sounds.
Although they want to please, Bullmastiffs think for themselves and need a confident trainer. Use positive reinforcement techniques, never corporal punishment, but be firm and consistent in what you ask of them. Avoid repetitive training, or your Bullmastiff will get bored and start doing his own thing.
Think outside the puppy. If you don’t want your bullmastiff on the furniture when he weighs 130 pounds, don’t let him on it when he weighs only 20 pounds. Once a habit is formed, it becomes difficult to break it.
Housetraining shouldn’t be a problem as long as you make it a positive experience and provide your pup with a regular potty schedule and plenty of opportunities to go outside. Crate training is a wonderful tool for house training and keeping your young puppy from chewing on things they shouldn’t.
Bullmastiffs require a strong hand when training them, but they also need love and patience. When they are trained, you will find that they are wonderful, caring, and loyal companions who will gladly risk their lives to protect you.
Bullmastiffs don’t shed as much as Border Collies, but because of their larger size, they have more coats to shed. Use a bristle brush, grooming glove, or rubber brush to keep their coat in tip-top shape and minimize the effects of shedding. Plan to brush your pup once a week. You’ll need to brush several times a week (perhaps even daily) in the spring and fall; They shed more frequently during this time as the weather changes.
When you brush your pup, take the time to clean their ears. This helps prevent allergies, ear mites, and infections, and be sure to use cotton balls (no Q-tips allowed!) or ear wipes. If you are unsure how to clean the ears, or you notice redness and/or an odor inside them, contact your veterinarian.
Your Bullmastiff may not need frequent bathing; Once a month (and sometimes every two to three months) may be enough unless your dog gets really dirty. Too many baths are not a good thing for your pup; It can strip the natural oils that keep their skin and coat healthy. If they just need a touch-up, you can clean their face with waterless shampoo or grooming wipes. Clean around the eyes with a cotton ball dipped in warm water or use a washcloth.
Brushing your teeth is one of the most important grooming habits you should develop; This will save your pup unnecessary suffering and prevent costly veterinary bills. Get your pet used to brushing their teeth when they are young. Start by brushing their teeth a few times a week and work up to daily. And every year, schedule a professional cleaning with your vet.
Large breeds like bullmastiffs require experienced pet parents who are willing to devote time to socialization and training. These demons are powerfully built and do not always know their strength. You don’t want an untrained bullmastiff running up to visitors and knocking them down.
Help your dog become a well-behaved family member by starting to train them when they are puppies. These dogs are intelligent and quick learners, so they pick up basic commands (like sit, stay, and come) and tricks right away.
Because they are such strong dogs, be sure to teach your puppy not to leash or jump on people during training to prevent mishaps as they grow up.
“Place” is a great command to teach your Bullmastiff not to be attached to guests entering the home. To teach your puppy this command, encourage them to go to the spot where you want them to be by holding a treat, Saying “place,” then giving them a treat and praising them when they sit in place. Next, leave them in place. Repeat this a few times, and move a step or two away from the spot, so you’re not standing too close. Gradually, you will be able to move around the room, say “place” and your pup will go to their place. You may find it helpful to teach them to “sit” first.
Bullmastiffs require firm, consistent training. New pet parents may find it helpful to attend a group training class. You may also want to hire a trainer who uses positive reinforcement for more one-on-one training.
Diet & Nutrition
Your Bullmastiff will benefit from a high-quality, well-balanced diet. Be sure to look for a market disclosure that says the food meets the standard set by the Association of American Feed Control Officials.
Follow the recommended feeding map on a good marketable cal food to overfeed your can. Your veterinarian can help guide your bullmastiff on its diet, health and lifestyle, and how often to feed it.
Puppies need specific nutrition for their developing musculoskeletal system. And puppy food specially formulated for large breeds of dogs can be beneficial. Brands made specifically for large breed puppies include Hill’s, Purina, and Royal Canin.
As you’re planning meal times, don’t forget that dogs count calories too! Therefore, you want to find a good balance between food and treats to keep your dog at optimal weight. As always, follow your vet’s advice. They are in the best position to make mealtime recommendations to meet your pup’s optimal nutritional needs.
Below are breed clubs, organizations, and associations where you can find additional information about the Bullmastiff.
Bullmastiff – Top 10 Facts
Other Dog Breed And Further Research
How much is a Bullmastiff dog?
If you are in the market for a Bullmastiff, expect to pay between $1,000 – $2,000 for a puppy, with an average price of around $1,500. However, it is not uncommon for purebred Bullmastiff puppies from high-quality parents to fetch around $3,000.
Is Bullmastiff hypoallergenic?
No, Bullmastiff is not hypoallergenic. Although they have short coats, Bullmastiffs drool moderately and often, which can trigger allergies.
Is the bullmastiff aggressive or dangerous?
No, Bullmastiffs are not aggressive or dangerous. Their sheer size can be intimidating to strangers, but these gentle giants can be well-behaved pets with proper training and socialization.
Does a bullmastiff shake?
Yes, bullmastiffs drool, so you’ll want to designate a towel that’s specifically for them. Bullmastiffs slip because their lips are loose (but they’ll take your secrets to the grave).
Are Bullmastiffs Good Guard Dogs?
Bullmastiffs make good guard dogs, but remember, they are ninjas, not barkers. They have a strong instinct to protect the family they love.
What are the most popular bullmastiff names?
Popular Bullmastiff names include Bear, Champion, Braveheart, King, Knight, Gallant, Spirit, Clifford, Bruiser, Goliath, Maximus, Jupiter, and Rocky.
What is the most common bullmastiff mix?
The most common Bullmastiff mixes are:
- Bullmastiff-Pit Mix (Pitbull Mastiff)
- Bullmastiff-Great Dane Mix (Bull Denis)
- Bullmastiff-Boxer Mix (Boxmas)
- Bullmastiff-German Shepherd Mix (German Shaders)
- Bullmastiff-Rottweiler Mix (Bull Mastweiler)