That the Bullmastiff belongs to the dog-like dogs, you can see at first sight. He was bred as a protection and guard dog only in more recent times. In fact, his breed is one of the youngest in existence. He gained fame as a police dog in Great Britain and the USA. The breed is registered with the FCI as standard number 157. In Germany, breeders are organized in the Club für Molosser e. V..
The Bullmastiff grows up to 69 cm high and thus belongs to the medium-sized dogs. With 60 kg, he appears massive and muscular. This effect is reinforced by his broad chest and compact build. His coat is smooth with short, shaggy hair. The breed comes in various shades of brindle, red or fawn.
A square head gives the Bullmastiff its characteristic appearance. This includes the v-shaped ears and short muzzle. At the same time, the black mask catches the eye. It is dark at the muzzle and fades towards the eyes. Often the breed has a white mark on the chest.
A distinctive feature of this breed are their forehead wrinkles. At rest, the forehead is smoothed. As soon as he notices something unusual, it changes. He does not emit a sound. However, the Bullmastiff pulls his forehead in clear folds. In this way, he gives his master an inaudible sign that something is wrong.
In general, the Bullmastiff rarely barks. He is attentive, but rather quiet. Towards other people he behaves suspiciously and reserved. However, he is very attached to his family and is particularly loyal.
As a guard dog, the Bullmastiff is bred for endurance and good tracking skills. He is extremely alert and vigilant. Loyal, he clings to his family and is ready to defend them at any time. His threshold of irritation is high. Nevertheless, he must be trained consistently from puppyhood. Then he accepts strangers and is not overly suspicious.
The Bullmastiff needs a lot of exercise. This powerhouse loves an active lifestyle. He loves to play and yet is calm towards other dogs. These characteristics also make him the perfect family dog. He is even-tempered and friendly with children. He knows who belongs to the family. He protects these people reliably and determinedly.
Great self-confidence and pronounced stubbornness make him an advanced dog. A profound education from the beginning is necessary. Subordination is recommended as a good occupation and education for the Bullmastiff. He likes to work and learns quickly.
In some federal states of Germany, the Bullmastiff is considered a listed dog. It is also on the breed list in Vienna and Vorarlberg. In the Swiss canton of Geneva, the breed is banned altogether and in Ticino it is on the list. It is classified as dangerous or suspected dangerous. As a result, there are some restrictions or requirements when keeping it.
The right food
Although the Bullmastiff is considered a healthy breed, some diseases do occur. These can include hip dysplasia or elbow dysplasia. Do you want to prevent or reduce these diseases? Then you need to pay attention to the diet already in puppyhood.
It is known that incorrect nutrition in the growth phase increases these diseases. This includes food with high energy content. Such food should not be fed to your young Bullmastiff. In addition, puppies should not be fed extra vitamin C, vitamin D or calcium.
So that joints, tendons and ligaments are not overloaded, you must also pay attention to the weight. The Bullmastiff is already a heavy dog due to its muscular build. It is therefore important that he remains normal weight.
This means that you adjust the nutritional value of the daily ration to the size of your dog. In addition to his basal metabolic rate, there is also the daily exercise. The rule is: the more exercise your animal has, the higher the energy intake may be.
Treats are of course allowed. You simply deduct them from the next food ration. In this way, you ensure that your dog stays slim and healthy. High weight puts a strain on the organs and the heart. Another reason to ensure a balanced dog diet.
Bullmastiffs like to eat everything that comes in front of their snout. Be careful what he eats on the side. Especially outdoors you have to be careful that he doesn't catch anything dangerous or poisonous.
Your Bullmastiff is very low maintenance. The coat needs to be brushed. After spending time outdoors, check him for ticks or minor injuries. Also look at his paws and in the spaces between the claws.
If you want, you can of course give him a bath. But actually brushing should be enough. Dirt is easily removed from the short hair. The Bullmastiff breed tends to drool quickly. You can use a cloth to remove the annoying spit regularly.
Pay special attention to the folded back ears. It is not easy to determine whether they are in order. That's why you check them regularly. There should be no inflammations, injuries or parasites.
The standard program includes trimming the claws. Regular visits to the vet will keep your dog healthy. He must be vaccinated. In addition, the doctor deworms him and checks his general condition.
As a listed dog, the Bullmastiff needs a temperament test in some German states. It could be that you as the owner have to provide a certificate of competence. This requires, besides the physical care of your dog, also some attention.
Steady, consistent education makes living with your guard dog trouble-free. Keep his alert mind busy with work. Tracking, a little agility or other training will balance his temperament. Also in everyday life you must clarify the hierarchy and emphasize obedience.
Whether it's a puppy or an adult dog, your Bullmastiff definitely needs interesting and sturdy toys. He loves to be with the family. That's why his place is definitely not in a kennel. He needs connection with his humans for socialization. A place in the house or in the apartment is appropriate.
Food, bowl and brush complete the basic products in the home. Some recommend a bib. It helps to catch excessive saliva. For car travel, this large dog should sit in the trunk. The dog crate also makes car travel safe for him.
A collar and the leash are part of the basic equipment for the road. Perhaps a muzzle is also mandatory in your area. Find out in advance if your dog is on the breed list. There you will also get the necessary information about the requirements of the authorities.
Other accessories depend on which activity you decide to do. For agility, you can equip yourself with various hurdles and sets for a course. For tracking work you need a harness. Also, a long leash or a drag line is useful.
Origin & History
In the 19th century, many noblemen with large aristocratic estates lived in England. Gamekeepers were responsible for protection against poachers on their estates. Hunger drove many people to hunt illegally for meat. However, poaching was punishable by death.
In order to apprehend the criminals, one needed a dog that was alert and able to track. He should also not hurt them unnecessarily, but only arrest them. The poachers should be executed as publicly as possible. This served as a deterrent to other potential criminals. Until then, gamekeepers used large hunting dogs. However, they injured and killed instead of just setting.
The Bullmastiff was bred purposefully. He is 60 percent descended from the Mastiff (Old English Mastiff). He owes 40 percent to the Bulldog (Old English Bulldog). A pinch of Bloodhound provided the excellent sense of smell. Thus the Gamekeeper's Nightdog or Gamekeeper night dog born
On December 24, 1924, the Kennel Club in Great Britain recognized the breed. However, his time as a dog of gamekeepers is long gone. Its qualities are especially appreciated by the police. He is a common police dog in Great Britain and the USA.
A great lover of this breed was the breeder Moseley. He made the Bullmastiff widely known. In 1925, he began to turn the guard dog into a loyal family dog. The Bullmastiff is also an excellent companion dog. He is also widely used as a scent and guard dog. Even a use as a guide dog and rescue dog is conceivable.