The gamekeeper’s “night dog”
Body: Large, symmetrical, and powerful with muscular loins, a slightly arched deep, wide chest and short, level back..
Coat: Short and dense, close to the body.
Color: Fawn, red, and brindle.
Ears: V-shaped, folded back, and set high.
Eyes: Dark or hazel and separated by a distinct furrow.
Feet: Compact and cat-like with round, well-arched toes, thick pads and black nails.
Head: Very distinctive with a large, square skull, well-developed cheeks, a broad, black nose and black mask around the eyes.
Neck: Well-muscled and powerful with a slight arch.
Legs: Forelegs are straight, wide set, and well-boned. Hind legs are powerful with well-muscled double thighs.
Height is 24 – 27 inches
Weight is 100 – 130 pounds
Tail: Natural and high set, thick at the base, tapering to the tip and carried with a slight upward curve.
Recommended for experienced dog handlers.
Patient with children if raised with them.
The Bullmastiff is a very large, powerful, and fearless breed of dog who first appeared in Britain when the English crossed the Mastiff and Bulldog in an effort to develop a dog capable of sneaking up on poachers. When close to the poacher, the Bullmastiff would attack, on command, keeping them at bay until captured and thus avoiding the inevitable bloodshed of a shootout.
He is a huge mass of muscle with a gentle, intelligent, and loyal personality. The AKC Standard says he is “fearless and confident, yet docile…showing great strength, endurance, and alertness.”
Although he is a quiet and gentle dog, he is best suited for an experienced handler who can devote lots of time to obedience training and socialization. He is a fast learner but the Bullmastiff can be obstinate and will insist on doing things his way. His master must be able to provide stern, consistent, and rewarding leadership along with companionship to this handsome gentle giant.
Family members and pets, including cats, will be welcome on his turf, however, he will not accept strange animals into his territory and may become aggressive at their appearance. He may also be aggressive with other dogs of the same gender.
The Bullmastiff requires a great deal of attention or he will quickly become bored and may take it upon himself to find some stimulating activity inside, or more likely, outside of his own domain. With his powerful body he is capable of finding his way through most enclosures if he so desires, including scaling walls if necessary.
Be certain you have the time and energy to meet their needs before considering this breed of dog for your home.
AKC Group: Working Group (dog fighting breed)
Originally bred to sneak up on poachers. Currently used as a guard dog and as a companion dog.
A cross between a Mastiff and a bulldog.
Care and Grooming
Exercise: Moderate exercise will keep your Bullmastiff fit and trim.
Grooming: His coat can easily be maintained with a quick daily brushing and occasional bath. Be sure to keep the folds of the skin clean. The Reader’s Digest Illustrated Book of Dogs recommends cleaning under the folds of skin with a cotton swab dipped in a solution of warm water and bicarbonate of soda.
Life Expectancy: 10 – 12 Years
Entropion (eyelid disorder)
Though his dense coat is protective of most weather conditions, the Bullmastiff may have respiratory problems in hot, humid climates. Be sure to provide them with ample shade and, if possible, air-conditioning to keep him cool.
Country of Origin
Originated in the United Kingdom – 1800s