When it comes to size, the mastiff breed is on top of the list of the biggest dogs recognized by the American Kennel Club. Despite their gigantic size, fierce face and fearless attitudes, mastiffs are highly popular among families because of their affinity for human companionship especially with their ultra-close bonds with their human families. The trick in becoming masters to these intelligent canines is to understand their general characteristics from their physical appearance to their mental temperament.
The ancient Egyptians have domesticated mastiffs of which many of these canines were immortalized in drawings on the monuments. Even the great Caesar appreciated the sheer power and courage of the mastiffs working alongside British soldiers so much so that he brought the breed to Rome where it was primarily used for lion fighting, gladiator fights and bull baiting.
In England, the mastiff crossed over into civilian use when peasants raised the dogs against dangerous predators, human and animal alike. Today, mastiffs can be found in virtually all the continents in various forms, shapes and sizes either as family dogs or as working dogs.
Mastiffs are not suitable pets for everybody mainly because of their gigantic sizes. Wide open spaces in the countryside or large parks in suburban areas are the most suitable living spaces for the breed.
Beyond this limitation, mastiffs are great pets for individuals and families for many reasons. For one thing, its coat is easy to care for sans the constant shedding of other breeds. Owners can take pride in the canine’s muscled body, heavy jowls and loose skin that make for a beautiful dog. And yet despite its large size, it only needs a moderate amount of exercise.
For another thing, the properly trained and socialized mastiff is a powerful yet loyal, gentle and protective companion to its human masters. Its fearless courage in the face of danger coupled with its docility, calmness and good nature around the family is an irresistible combination for most owners.
Keep in mind that mastiffs are physically powerful and mentally intelligent animals, two characteristics that make them stand out from other breeds. As such, owners must be confident of their alpha dog status lest their pets take over the household. Again, proper training including socialization opportunities are of utmost importance.
Despite its hanging jowls, the mastiff breed is beautiful. Its massive frame is characterized by symmetry from the tips of the tail to the muzzle such that its posture is always of dignity, majesty and beauty. Even its great jowls have a certain appeal not found in other breeds.
The eyes of mastiffs are usually set wide apart with brown eyes that appear alert, kindly and affectionate particularly toward their owners. Their coat colors are also appealing including fawn, apricot and brindle. Overall, mastiffs elicit awe among humans and for good reasons, too.There are so many things to love in the mastiff breed from its appearance to its attitude. People are inevitably drawn to these dogs once the fear of their size, shape and reputation are overcome with good exposure to these gentle giants.