Spanish Mastiff

Extremadura Mastiff, English Channel Mastiff

This big, rather friendly-looking doggy with a melancholic look is an exceptional guard, always ready to defend property and people without ever backing down. His greatest aptitude being guarding, he carries out his task scrupulously and flawlessly. This magnificent specimen must be trained with a strong hand, in order to make him docile and obedient. He will be a wonderful companion, but will remain a guardian in the soul, always ready to defend his own.

Height 52 to 88 cm
Weight 52 to 100 kg
Life expectancy 11 to 13 years
Home country Spain

Quick Overview of the Spanish Mastiff

Temperament

  • Guardian at heart
  • Affectionate and balanced character
  • Rather soft and calm
  • Some subjects may be aggressive

Appearance

  • Muscular and very powerful
  • Well-proportioned physique
  • Compact frame and bulky head
  • Sad but friendly doggie look

Health

  • Growth to watch
  • No particular pathology

Temperament of the Spanish Mastiff

This guardian at heart has a loving, balanced and very calm character. He becomes fearsome when his master or his property is in danger. As the reconstitution of the breed is not yet fully developed, some subjects are more aggressive, while others are a little too reserved compared to their large size.

Balanced but sometimes stubborn, he needs an iron fist in a velvet glove. His education must be firm and strict and hierarchy must be instilled in him at a very young age.

This magnificent dog has many qualities as life companion, but he must absolutely be monitored by an experienced master because he is endowed with a strong character and a rather stubborn temperament, often making him reluctant to be submissive.

Breed Appearance

Spanish mastiff

Muscular and powerful, this large dog is very robust. Endowed with strong, powerful limbs, his physique is nevertheless well proportioned.

His bones are compact and his head is fairly large. In spite of his sad, friendly doggy look, he has a strong character and can sometimes be fearsome.

Height

Between 77 and 88 cm (30.31 to 34.65 inches) for the male
Between 52 and 77 cm (20.47 to 30.31 inches) for the female

Weight

Between 90 and 100 kg (198.41 to 220.46 pounds) for the male
Between 52 and 77 kg (114.64 to 169.75 pounds) for the female

Color

All colors are possible for his coat, but the most common are the uniform ones, like white-beige, black, fawn, grey, brown and reddish shades.

Brindle and spotted white coats are also popular.

Hair

His full, smooth coat is medium length and hard.

Morphology

His large head is rather square. His small eyes are brown or hazelnut and almond shaped. They look rather sad. His flat, hanging ears are triangular in shape and medium size.

His nose is black. The big tail of the Spanish Mastiff is flexible and very strong. It is carried low and descends to the hocks.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 2, section 2 and is #91

Tips About this breed

His stubbornness must be firmly controlled at an early age, through very strict education. His place in the family must also be instilled early so that he knows where he stands in the family hierarchy.

He can live outdoors, but it is essential that he has an adequate shelter for protection. Despite his fur and robustness, this large hound can suffer from the cold.

Obviously, an apartment in the city is not ideal for him. He needs space and fresh air, but the master needs to be close by because human contact is also essential for him.

Health of the Spanish Mastiff

The Spanish Mastiff, rather robust once adult, requires increased surveillance during his growth, as do all molossus.

Food with a high percentage of protein is necessary, as he remains quite delicate throughout his growth. No pathology affects the breed.

GROOMING

A regular brushing is necessary for the maintenance of his beautiful fur. However, no other special maintenance is required.

History of this breed

This large hound, which originated in a region of Southwestern Spain, more precisely in Extremadura, is apparently the oldest Spanish dog breed.

Directly descended from the Molossus of Tibet, imported by the Romans, the Spanish Mastiff was used to protect livestock for centuries. Shepherds often had to move flocks of sheep to very remote areas, and with the Spanish Mastiff, shepherds and their flocks were protected and very well guarded.

The activities of the shepherds having practically disappeared in modern times, this big hound lost his popularity and almost disappeared completely. The breed is still in breeding.

The first standard of the Spanish Mastiff was established in 1946, but the club did not officially come into existence until 1981. Used at that time to guard herds, he is appreciated nowadays as a life companion, but his main skills remain guarding and protecting people and their property.

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