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On this page we have listed just a few of ways a Mastiff will change the way you go about your daily business. If these Mastiff accommodations seem to be too much, then the Mastiff is not the breed for you. If you are undaunted, begin your search for the right breeder for you. Look for a
responsible breeder who breeds health-tested, well-tempered dogs that meet the breed standard. The breeder you choose should be a resource for you for the life of your dog. All dogs should be sold with a contract and AKC papers. The Mastiff Club of America website has an excellent FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section that includes a Questions to Ask a Mastiff Breeder
page. Taking your time and doing some research will help ensure that the bringing a Mastiff into your home will be a fantastic and sometimes slobbery experience!
Bringing a giant breed like a Mastiff into your home means more than making a little room on the couch. There are many
considerations to take into account to make your home Mastiff-ready.
• Most Mastiff owners forego having a coffee table. Aside from the fact that one wag of a Mastiff tail can clear the table, the table makes it difficult for the Mastiff to get on and off the couch.
• The weight of a Mastiff laying on the couch day after day can shorten the life span of the couch considerably. Slipcovers can help but nothing can save the cushions from breaking down. Heavy duty leather seems to be the best bet and is easily wiped down.
• Walls must be scrubbable. Spit flies whenever the Mastiff shakes its massive head. Once dry, the goobers form very interesting 3-dimensional shapes that can lend character to the walls (and ceiling). Should you wish to remove this fine artwork, baby wipes and magic erasers seem to do the trick.
• Mastiffs are very hard on vacuums. While Mastiffs aren’t heavy shedders, it is still a lot of dog shedding. Not many vacuums can stand up to the daily collection of hair.
• Slippery floors are a problem for any dog. But giant breeds need good traction to get up and down without injury. If you have wood, vinyl or tile floors, be prepared to put down throw rugs with non-slip pads.
• There should be a spot in each room for a drool towel. This will keep the goober transfer onto clothing rate down.
• It is best to eliminate dry cleanables from any area that the Mastiff hangs out in. Curtains seem to be goober magnets so washable or wipeable materials are a must. A shower curtain can work well!
• The dry cleaning rule applies to the owners clothing as well. It is a good idea to have sticky lint rollers on hand!
It is always important to be sure that any toys given are appropriate for your dog. Not many toys can hold up to the Mastiff. By the time a Mastiff is 6 months old most toys present a serious choking hazard.
• No balls smaller than a soccer ball should be played with. And realize that no soccer ball or basketball can hold up to a Mastiff’s canines.
• Mastiffs can easily break pieces of rubber and plastic toys. This can cause serious internal problems and result in surgery. The black Kong is one of the few toys that can hold up to Mastiff chewing.
• An empty plastic soda bottle with the label removed can be a fun, cheap toy. Once the bottle is finally defeated and begins breaking it must be taken away as the plastic can be sharp. Freezing water in the bottle can make it last a bit longer for supervised summer fun.
• Not all Mastiffs are shredders so large stuffed toys may be fine. Some of the new heavy canvas toys with heavily serged seams can hold up much longer but they can be expensive.
• You must supervise all toys and remove any loose stuffing or squeakers. Also
once pieces start coming off plastic or rubber toys they must be removed.
Mastiffs require a good quality food that is not too high in protein. They should be fed adult food — even as puppies. They eat much more food than smaller breeds making them more expensive to keep.
• A growing Mastiff will eat 8-12 cups of dry dog food a day. A full grown adult will eat 6-8.
• One Mastiff can easily go through a 33 lb bag of food in a 20 days.
• Do not underestimate cleanup! Remember 33 lbs in is 33lbs out!
• Never be give cooked meat bones, rawhides, or anything else that could easily be lodged in the throat or cause an obstruction.
• If supplements are given (eg. to support joint health) dosage is determined by weight. So again the cost here is greater than that of a small dog.
• Be prepared to change the water bowl often. Mastiffs are not neat drinkers and many do not like to drink slobbery water. Towels around the bowls can help reduce the number of times you slip walking thru the area!
Expect your vet bills to be large. Most vets have a set office fee. The amount of vaccine and/or medication your dog may receive however, is determined by weight. The cost of vaccinating or medicating a 200 lb mastiff is much greater than that of an 8 lb Yorkie.
• Find a vet with giant breed experience.
• Find a vet whose office can accommodate a Mastiff. Some exam rooms can be too small to do a proper exam and after 4 months no mastiff is going up on the table!
A single Mastiff can be transported in the back seat of your average sedan. Should you need to transport other people and a
Mastiff you will need to move up to a larger vehicle. Vans, minivans, SUVs and even some cross-over SUVs can work.
• A crate is the safest way to transport any dog. Although not many vehicles can accommodate a Mastiff-sized crate.
• Depending on the height of your vehicle, you may need to purchase a ramp to make entry and exit safe. Aside from the fact that most Mastiffs will not jump into an SUV, having one jump out is inviting injury. Remember that the ramp would need to be able to hold over 200 lbs.
• It is best to have a wipeable vinyl or leather interior. Mastiffs love to rest their heads on the back of the seats in front of them. Let’s just say that can leave a mark.
• A dog barrier is an excellent idea. Some Mastiffs like to climb over the seats to get closer to their owners — irregardless of what is on the seat in front of them (kids, luggage, a cake). Also, in an accident, a Mastiff can become a 200+ lb projectile. The barrier keeps everyone safer.
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