This short-muzzled dog, Bullmastiff is a fearless family guardian that first came into the limelight in the mid-1800s; they are believed to be an origin of Britain. This powerful breed is an outcome of two breeds: the Mastiff, because of its daunting height and the Bulldog was chosen owing to their ability to tear off poachers.
Nevertheless, care must be taken that the children are under the elder’s supervision while playing with a Bullmastiff.
One of the most interesting features found in this breed is that they hardly bark; they can go days without barking and they bark only when they feel agitated. This is the reason that got them the name – “barkless dogs”.
Bullmastiff Size & Weight
Height – Bullmastiff males are usually 25 – 27 inches tall and the females could be anywhere in between 24 and 26 inches.
Weight – Both the female and male Bullmastiffs weigh between 100 and 130 pounds.
What Is So Good About Them?
This canine breed is extremely loyal and protective towards the family that takes him in. Though they are sensitive towards strangers, they are very particular about territorial instincts and protection.
As an adult, the Bullmastiff is mostly calm and quiet unless they sense trouble around them. They can seem a bit aggressive towards the same sex but are very affectionate toward smaller pets like cats.
A Bullmastiff is not right for you if you cannot put up with the following behaviour of the pet;
- Rowdiness and stubbornness when they are very young
- They can turn totally destructive when they feel bored.
- Has a very strong willed mind and hence needs a very confident master to take charge over his activities
- Boredom and loneliness can turn them to be a more reserved pet.
A Bullmastiff has an average lifespan of 8 – 10 years but regular exercise and frequent health checkups can allow them to enjoy a longer life.
Bullmastiff Health Problems
Like all other dog breeds, Bullmastiffs to face a common set of health problems that are definite to worsen when left unattended. Here are a few major diseases and health conditions faced by a Bullmastiff.
- Osteosarcoma – It is an aggressive form of bone cancer that most commonly affects large dog breeds. By the time you start noticing symptoms, this disease might spread into the internal organs. Hence, it would be best if you opt for a complete health check once a year.
- Cardiomyopathy – This cardiac condition can result in weakness, lethargy, fainting and if left undetected, sudden death as well.
- Hypothyroidism – Obesity, hair-loss, and lethargy are a few common symptoms that indicate the onset of the thyroid issue. If treated at an early stage; this can be cured or at least maintained.
- Joint Diseases – Elbow and hip dysplasia is a very common disease found in the dogs as they grow old. But proper care and immediate treatment when your dog displays peculiar behavior can help retain the pet’s health.
How To Train A Bull Mastiff?
This gigantic breed needs regular exercising to keep the mind and body healthy; a very short walk to the park is enough to keep it contained. When you start training your Bullmastiff puppy, make sure Socializing is given the highest priority; they must learn to make friends with other pets and must be able to differentiate between friends and foes.
Sometimes, home training can turn out to be more tiresome; in such cases, it is always best to take help from experts who can assist you with regular training sessions for your dog.
It’s very much mandatory to train your Bullmastiff while he is a pup because as the pet grows old, you may have to put up with its stubbornness.
Here are a few training tips:
- Start Slow and don’t let your pet bite more than it can chew. Break their training into small sessions that last not more than 15 – 30 minutes.
- Be patient and consistent with your training.
- Learn to communicate with your pet; it should either start understanding what you speak or at least recognize hand gestures.
- Reward your Bullmastiff when it accomplishes a task. That will keep the pet motivated.
- Punish them if needed (not literally but make them realize they are wrong); you shouldn’t allow them to break toys or nibble slippers just as they like. Teach them to be disciplined but ensure you don’t hurt them in the process.
Along with a lot of exercises, the Bullmastiff also needs to be given a balanced diet in order to remain in a proper shape. Break the meals into two portions comprising of 3 to 4 cups of high-quality dog food.
You must keep a check on its weight and if you doubt the measurement of food given, consult the vet.
Interesting Facts About Bullmastiff
- They were primarily bred to be guard dogs; this fact seems very obvious because of their sturdiness and courage
- As mentioned earlier, they can remain calm and not bark at all for days.
- Sylvester Stallone used his pet Butkus in the film “Rocky”. What’s so interesting about it? Well, I simply love the flashback about this Bullmastiff; Sylvester sold his Bullmastiff because he was broke and once he had enough money, he made sure he got his pet back. How touching!
- They have been used in the police and army services in the past.
- Earlier, they were sold at a higher price than usual just because they bark less often.
The cost of a well-bred Bullmastiff can be anywhere around $1000 and $2000. A breeder who is willing to produce health clearance papers and test results might charge a bit higher.
The puppy you buy must be raised in a very clean environment and must be vaccinated beforehand.
The internet is crowded with breeder information and you need to do your homework if you want to bring home a healthy and vibrant Bullmastiff. Here are a few important questions that you must ask while buying a Bullmastiff;
How healthy were the pet’s parents?
Genetic disorders are quite common in dogs, so make sure the parent breeds are in good health condition. Make it known to the breeder that you would like to see all the health clearance papers before signing up on the deal.
What is the age of the female parent?
The female Mastiff must be at least 22 months old and less than 7 years old when it is bred. A breeding age that does not fall into this age limit must not be accepted.
What are the local clubs that the breeder has a membership with?
Bullmastiff breeders must have a membership with clubs that mostly support Bullmastiff breeding. A good breeder will love to associate himself with every known club that promotes Bullmastiff breeding.
What is the food brand used to feed the pup?
Before buying the pet, ask for the usual food brand used to feed the dog. You must ensure that swapping the food brands should be taken slowly; do not change the food habits all of a sudden.
Give your pet a mixture of the old and new food brand and you can gradually stop giving the old food brand once you are satisfied with its metabolic activities.