Neapolitan Mastiff

Mastino Napoletano, Naples Mastiff

This beautiful hound is a big tough guy with a soft heart. His appearance may displease some, for others it only takes one glance at him to avoid venturing into his territory. Those who really know him also know that behind this immense frame, there is an equally immense heart. However, one must never assault one of his own, because the Neapolitan Mastiff will then become a fearsome enemy. This magnificent specimen of the canine gentleman is a protector at heart.

Height 70 to 85 cm
Weight 70 to 90 kg
Life expectancy 8 to 10 years
Home country Italy

Quick Overview of the Neapolitan Mastiff


  • Balanced
  • Not at all aggressive
  • Calm and gentle
  • Loves children


  • Powerful, solid and very massive
  • Heavy and stocky look
  • Resemblance to the bear
  • Short and rather huge head


  • Eye problems can occur
  • Growth to monitor
  • Beware of the many folds of the skin

Temperament of the Neapolitan Mastiff

This large dog is totally balanced and has a non-aggressive character. He is calm, gentle and adores children.

Very patient and friendly, he loves to play with children and will protect them against wind and tides. The Neapolitan Mastiff will become totally intolerant if his family is in danger. If provoked, this big hound will turn into a formidable opponent.

Usually he doesn't need to assert his authority by his aggressiveness. His very powerful deterrent power alone is more than enough to discourage any intruder or stranger from venturing any further.

mâtin napolitain personnalité

Breed Appearance

Neapolitan mastiff

This big hound is a powerful, solid and very massive dog. His heavy and stocky appearance gives him a bear-like gait.

His furtive cat-like stride is slow, and the Neapolitan Mastiff very rarely runs. This immense dog with a slightly grumpy appearance displays a robust and powerful physique.


Between 75 and 85 cm (29.53 to 33.46 inches) for the male
Between 70 and 80 cm (27.56 to 31.50 inches) for the female


Between 75 and 90 kg (165.34 to 198.41 pounds) for the male
Between 70 and 85 kg (154.32 to 187.39 pounds) for the female


The colour of his coat is mainly lead. However, grey, black, fawn, mahogany or deer fawn are also accepted.

Black or grey can sometimes be sprinkled with small white spots on the chest or fingers. The Neapolitan Mastiff can also be brindle (tiger-like).


His coat is tight, smooth and short and his skin is wrinkled mainly on the neck and head.


His head is short and rather huge. Eyes are wide apart and round. Ears are relatively small compared to the size of the hound.

They look like triangles and are located above the zygomatic arch (malar bone). His nose is voluminous and his lips are very hanging. His tail is usually cut off.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 2, section 2 and is #197

Price and monthly budget

Price you can expect to pay for a Neapolitan Mastiff puppy: between and
These prices are indicative and may vary from breeder to breeder
Average monthly budget for a Neapolitan Mastiff:
The monthly budget includes the average expenses for food and hygiene products (grooming, anti-parasite...)

Tips About this breed

Not needing much space, the Neapolitan Mastiff can live very well in the city.

Even if he doesn't get a lot of exercise, it's best to plan a daily walk so that he can relax his muscles at least once a day.

The ideal situation for this big hound is to spend many hours outdoors during the hottest part of the day and provide a warm place for him to stay overnight.

If he is a full-time guardian of the household and must stay outside, it is preferable to install a shelter to protect him from the cold.

The Neapolitan Mastiff doesn't take up a lot of space, and he really doesn't need much exercise, but due to his drooling chops, he drools a lot.

This is an important fact to consider because some owners are totally disgusted with it.

Health of the Neapolitan Mastiff

Eye problems can occur in Neapolitan Mastiffs, as well as dermatological infections, sometimes accompanied by heart problems.

It is imperative that his food is adapted very early on. His important nutritional needs must follow his rapid growth.

In order to avoid hip dysplasia, as with all large dogs, it is also preferable that the dog has access to sufficient space for daily exercise.

The many folds of his skin can bring some problems but good hygiene generally reduces the risk of skin infection. The cold can also cause him discomfort.


His dress does not require any particular maintenance, but his skin should be dried in case of humidity because the folds can cause irritations. It is not really useful to bathe or brush it.

History of this breed

Of Italian origin, the Neapolitan Mastiff belongs to the category of molosses. This large, particularly massive dog comes from the Italian peninsula.

Used extensively in Roman circus games, Mastiffs became watchdogs when the circus replaced the animals with men during the events.

This buffalo and bull keeper was particularly appreciated, and thanks to his great qualities, he also became very popular with the police, who used him regularly.

The breed almost disappeared completely in the 19th century, but Dr. Ruggero Soldati decided to save the Neapolitan Mastiff by drafting a project to standardize the breed and thus prevent the extinction of this magnificent dog.

The Italian cynologist and writer, Piero Zcanziani then reconstructed the breed from a few subjects still available. The Neapolitan Mastiff was officially recognized by the E.N.C.I. (Ente Nazionale della Cinofilia or the Italian Kennel Club) in 1949.

Probably descended from the Tibetan hound, like all hounds, the Neapolitan Mastiff has been known for at least two thousand years B.C. He is one of the oldest dog breeds on the planet.

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