The English Mastiff is one of the greatest of the great large dogs and has a history that dates back to ancient times. Although there is evidence of cross breeding to form what we now know as the English Mastiff, the EM (how I will refer to the do breed for this post) is a particular breed that many of the Mastiff dog types are descended from.
Considered to be the biggest of the large dog breed in terms of mass, with an average weight greater than that of the St. Bernard, the EM is a canine that is impossible to miss!
EM dogs have a generally sweet temperament, with an average life span of 7-9 years (though of course, this time will vary by care and the individual).
It might seem a strange fact that the ancient Celts used EM’s as war dogs, given their seeming docile nature, but there are records that indicate that this is true. EM’s are used as hunting dogs today, though other, faster and more agile breeds like the Great Dane are more often preferred to this breed.
A friend of mine has a fawn colored EM named Tiny (sarcasm runs very deep) that is a gentle giant and very much a typical example of his breed. A 5th generation descendant of my friend’s father’s dog, Tiny like long naps, cookies, and wrestling with people that are brave enough to provoke him to it with his favorite rope toy. I attempted this once, and to be clear, it wasn’t even a contest; Tiny won.
English Mastiffs are a great breed and as with all large dogs, they may end up having health issues as they age. All of the weight on their bones starts wearing on them and arthritis is a common ailment in EMs.
But, with a good healthy diet rich in protein and low in carbs, your English Mastiff can grow up strong and healthy. Be sure to have regular visits to the vet as well!
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