The Bullmastiff dog is recognizable, from breeding of Bulldog (40%) and Mastiff (60%), in England, during the late ninetieth century. Originally, known as “gamekeeper dog” because the breed accompanied gamekeepers, for their ability to track and overpower a poacher, and having the ability to be tough, fearless and silent. In 1933, the Bullmastiff was recognized by the American Kennel Club, and prior to being breed in England, starting in 1925. Currently, the Bullmastiff is often used for police and military as guard dogs.
Bullmastiff dogs are distinguishable by certain characteristics. The dog is large, with a square skull and short broad muzzle. The eyes are dark in color and medium-sized, with furrow of skin between the eyes. The upper lip does not hang below the lower jaw. The ears are V-shaped, wide apart and set high. The dog’s coat is short, coarse and lies flat against the body. The color of the coat is dark brindle, fawn or red with black mask across the muzzle. Any appearance of white is seen on the chest only. Bullmastiff dogs have tails set high, long, carried straight or curved slightly upward.
The average height for this breed dog is between 25 – 27 inches, average male dogs weight between 110 – 130 pounds and female dogs weight between 110 – 120 pounds. Bullmastiff dogs can be obediently trained, guardian of the home, show great agility and tracking. Instinctively the dog can distinguish between a “bad” person and harmless visitor. Providing kindness, praise, and good food, the dog can be trained, socialized and manageable to over come stubborn behavior. The dog is sociable with children, and tolerant of ear and tail pulls besides adoring to lick. Bullmastiff dogs will slobber, especially after eating, drinking or hard exercise, which is advisable to keep a rag handy available. Also, the dog tends to snore loudly at times.
Information caring for Bullmastiff Dogs includes: The dog eats three – five cups of high quality dog food per day or 40 – 70 pounds of dog food a month, and prefers not to be left outside all day. Bullmastiffs cannot tolerate warm weather due to their short noses and being sensitive to cold weather, because of their short coats. Minimal brushing of the dog is needed, rubbing a brush or massage glove will remove old dead hairs. Nails should be kept short and ears need to be cleaned. The dog needs plenty of room to walk around the home, because of its large size. Certainly, enjoys exercising, long walks up to thirty minutes or chasing a Frisbee. Bullmastiff dogs enjoy riding in a car and hanging their head out of the window. Unfortunately, when the dog slobbers, it will drool down the windows, doors, and possible be found, on cars trailing behind.
During the teething stage, the dog enjoys chewing on raw hides or chewable toys. Bullmastiffs tend to be sociable with other dogs, most of the time. Also, breed tends to be one family type of dogs. At nighttime the dog enjoys cuddling in bed next to their owner.
The average veterinarian bill per year for Bullmastiff dogs: $500 – $1,000 which includes heartworm, shots, antibiotics, and depending on the age / health. Associated medical problems related to Bullmastiffs: Eye surgery maybe required, when eye lids dop and turn in, which causes the eyelids contacting the eyeballs. Thyroid levels can be become low, causing a depressed immune system, making it harder for the dog to fight any infection. Besides, other common medical problems, including hip dysplasia for large dogs.
A Bullmastiff dog should be purchased from a reputable breeder, rescue society or adopted from a human Society. A breeder should be able to answer any questions, help with any problems for the life of Bullmastiff dog(s), and preferable registered with the American Kennel Club. The American Bullmastiff Association will provide further information: Secretary – LInda Silva, 15 Woodward Lane, Smithstown, NY 11787. Recommended books to purchase: The Bullmastiff Manual (The World of Dogs) by Bill Walkey, and The Bullmastiff: Peerless Protector by Geraldine M. Roach, Jack Shastid.