This article will compare 6 of the most popular Mastiff breeds.
What is the best breed of mastiff for first-time dog owners or families? A pet that is loyal and protective is the best for both. However, there are many Mastiff types to choose from when selecting a pet, and these are our top picks:
- Tibetan Mastiff
- Neapolitan Mastiff
- English Mastiff
- Great Dane (German Mastiff)
- French Mastiff
Overview of Mastiff Breeds
Contrary to popular belief, the Mastiff isn’t just a single breed. Although many Mastiff breeds share similar characteristics, some are totally different. This means that certain Mastiff breeds may be better suited for families than others.
Some are usually good with children, while others need more socialization and training. While most Mastiffs are excellent guard dogs and can be trained to do so, each breed has its unique characteristics.
- A common mastiff breed is the Tibetan Mastiff. They can be extremely protective of their family members and require a lot of socialization as young dogs. They are the hairiest of all Mastiff breeds, which gives them their distinctive appearance.
- The Bullmastiff is a mix of Bulldogs and Mastiffs. They make wonderful pets and combine the best of both breeds.
- The English Mastiff is an elegant, gentle breed of dog. They can be over 200 pounds but can still fit into a family.
- The German Mastiff is another popular breed of Mastiff and are often called Great Danes. They are friendly and can weigh in at over 100 pounds.
- The Neapolitan Mastiff is another common breed of Mastiff. These dogs may be the first thing you think about when you think of Mastiffs. They can be over 100 pounds and take up lots of space.
- Although French Mastiffs may be smaller than English Mastiffs they are just as powerful. These dogs are great watchdogs, weighing in at over 100 pounds.
There are more than a dozen of Mastiff breeds. This list written above does not include all of them. Not all breeds are suitable for family pets or first-time dog owners.
Before you make your final decision, be sure to read our article about the different Mastiff breeds. It’s surely a fascinating read.
Buy a Mastiff
Before you buy a Mastiff, think about the various qualities of the breed and the entire Mastiff family. These qualities may not be right for you or your family, or if they are too much.
The Tibetan Mastiff Breed
One of our favorite candidates for the ”best” Mastiff breed is of course the Tibetan Mastiff. This large, protective dog was originally bred to protect livestock but can also be used to protect you and your family, if they are well trained and socialized.
Tibetan Mastiff Puppies
They are independent and fiercely protective of their territory. These dogs are loyal to their family and owners but If they are going to be around children, this breed needs socialization.
Because they are destructive and can get bored, the Tibetan Mastiff needs stimulation and proper training. Although they love to be outside, trained TMs are also able to remain calm indoors. They do require regular brushing because of their thick coats.
Male TMs can weigh as much as 160 pounds and stand up to 30 inches tall. Female TMs can be as heavy as 120 pounds and stand up to 28 inches tall. These dogs are large, but they can be patient and adapt well to both warm and cool climates.
The Big Neapolitan Mastiff Breed
Another great choice for families and first-time dog owners is the Neapolitan Mastiff. This mastiff breed is very popular. Neapolitan Mastiffs can be loyal to their owners and were originally bred as guardian dogs.
Neapolitan Mastiff size and weight
Females can weigh as much as 130 pounds while males can weigh in at 150 pounds. A male may be approximately 30 inches tall and a female about 28 inches.
They are loyal to their families and will watch out for you. These dogs don’t trust strangers and can be reluctant to meet people outside their family. They can still be good with children if they are socialized enough.
Neapolitan Mastiffs don’t require a lot of exercise so they are a great choice for busy families. However, they are not suitable for all, and only experienced dog owners should consider bringing home this breed.
The English Mastiff Size and Temperament
Male English Mastiffs can be approximately 37 inches in length and can weigh as much as 230 pounds. On the other hand, Female English Mastiffs can weigh as much as 170 pounds and measure over 34 inches.
Although the English Mastiff can be a big dog, they are also very affectionate and loving, and can be great with children. They are gentle and easygoing dogs that usually make great pets, being loyal and dedicated to their families.
An English Mastiff doesn’t require you to have much experience with dogs to own one. You should always have towels in handy, since they can snore and can drool quite a bit.
In comparison with the Tibetan Mastiff, you don’t need to spend too much time caring for their hair. However, you will need to give them enough space to rest and relax.
Want to Know More About Them ?...
How family-friendly is this breed? This article will answer more questions and provide additional pros and cons.
The Great Dane (or German Mastiff) Size And Temperament
Another popular Mastiff breed is the German Mastiff or Great Dane. They are big and gentle, yet they can be quite large. Great Danes are friendly, reliable dogs that can be good with children.
This breed can be kept indoors for most of the day, but can still enjoy some exercise every day. They can be taken out for a short walk, or allowed to play in the backyard or another enclosed space.
If you have more than one dog, the Great Dane will get along with them. However, you will need to be careful with this Mastiff, since Great Danes don’t always know their size and can become clumsy.
Male Great Danes are at least 120 lbs and can reach up to 30 inches in height. On the other hand, female Great Danes can grow to 28 inches tall and weigh at least 100 pounds. Although Great Danes may drool, it is not as common as with English Mastiffs.
The Dogue de Bordeaux (French Mastiff)
Another good breed for families is the French Mastiff or Dogue de Bordeaux. Although they are powerful, they don’t feel the need to use their power. They are tinier than English Mastiffs and can be calm and patient.
French Mastiff Puppy Behavior And Socialization
French Mastiffs can be loyal and calm around their family members. The breed can be aggressive towards strangers, however, and are known to be very protective dogs.
French Mastiffs should be socialized as young dogs to make them feel comfortable with children and other pets. This will also help them to understand who is OK and who is part of their family.
Male French Mastiff can weigh up to 150 pounds and measure approximately 27 inches in height. Female French Mastiffs can weigh as much as 125 lbs. and measure 26 inches tall. These dogs are gentle, despite their size.
If you are unable to decide between a family-friendly Bulldog and a Mastiff, then the Bullmastiff may be the right breed for you, since Bullmastiffs are a mix of both.
Bullmastiffs Protectice But Gentle
They are gentle and quiet but can protect your family if necessary. They don’t get angry easily and are very laid back. They can be protective if they feel threatened.
Bullmastiffs are known for their stubbornness, which is one of their less appealing traits. Male Bullmastiffs can be stubborn and aggressive towards other male dogs, but tend to be good with children, especially when they are raised together.
Male Bullmastiffs can weigh as much as 130 pounds and stand up to 27 inches tall. Female Bullmastiffs may weigh as much as 120 pounds and stand up to 26 inches in height.
This dog can be stubborn, so be aware! Before bringing one home, there are a few things to consider.
Although they are great with children, their large size can make them dangerous around very young children. They love to bark and the whole house shakes when they do.
Common Mastiff Qualities
All Mastiffs share some traits although there are many breeds within their family. One breed might possess more than one trait. Not all traits are compatible with all types of owners. We realized this and created a separate article that provides more information about their personalities. We hope you find it useful.
Overall, well trained and socialized Mastiffs have many great qualities that make them worthy companions. Although you cannot choose the personality of your Mastiff, you can look at common traits of certain breeds. This will allow you to choose a breed with more of the characteristics you desire.
Loyalty and protectiveness are two of the most popular traits in Mastiffs. A properly trained Mastiff is a large pet that can be a guard dog and yet love to live with humans.
Are Tibetan Mastiffs Protective?
Dogs are “man’s best friend”, and for a good reason. Mastiffs, like many dogs, have a strong sense of loyalty to their owners. Mastiffs love their owners and will protect them from harm.
A Tibetan Mastiff will defend your home against any unwelcome visitor, since they are territorial. Socialization is important for your young TM. They are not aggressive and will often stand their ground, so it is better to classify them as a “watchdog” than a “guard dog”.
Loyalty is an excellent trait for any dog. Your dog might be more protective if you invite friends over, but usually your TM can be around when you are at home and they will be fine sitting on the couch.
Are Mastiffs Aggresive or Calm Dogs?
Surpricingly for some people, Mastiffs can be very calm and easy-going when they’re not busy protecting you or your territory. However, they can sometimes be too dominant when they live with toddlers and younger children, and can be so large that they cause fear in some people. If you are looking for a great guard dog, the Cane Corso might be the best choice.
Mastiff Exercise And Training
It is difficult to emphasize how much a Mastiff’s life can be affected by their size. Mastiffs require some physical activity every day, helping them maintain their bones and muscles.
Some breeds require more physical activity than others. English Mastiffs, for example, need to be exercised daily. Great Danes or the German Mastiffs on the other hand can be kept indoors but still require some exercise.
Another breed that does not require as much exercise is the Neapolitan Mastiff. They still need to be looked after.
The Tibetan Mastiff must be active, whether they are asleep or awake. If getting too little exercise and training, hey might become bored and cause damage to your property, especially when they are alone or in a restricted space.
Are Mastiffs good with babies and children?
Although not all Mastiffs are ideal for families with small children, most of them can be trained to interact with children and babies. Some Mastiff breeds are more suited to guarding and hunting, while others make great house pets.
Best Mastiff As Family Pet...
Many Mastiffs are great family pets and are great options for new owners. However, some dogs can be temperamental. You can increase your chances of finding a dog who will be a part of your family by taking the time to choose the right breed. By doing so, the following bullet point can be good to keep in mind.
- Loyalty is an important part of any Mastiff breed. This is especially true if your Mastiff will be a guard dog. Loyal dogs are more likely to protect you, their space, and family.
- You may choose a breed that is less active depending on your family’s needs. You should consider a less active breed, like the English Mastiff, if you don’t have the time or energy to exercise your dog. If you enjoy taking your dog on long walks, a more active breed may be a better choice.
- As a rule of thumb, most Mastiffs can be a great choice for families and even for first-time dog owners if they are properly socialized as puppies. Since a family has a lot of things going on and children are often curious, you need to consider a type of dog who won’t become frustrated or aggressive.
As you can see, some breeds are better suited for your needs than others. If you are planning to add a Mastiff into your family, then you should consider and learn more about these top breeds that can be suitable even for for first-time dog owners and families.
Want to Learn More About Mastiffs? Have a look at the articles below to find out more.