Bullmastiff

  • Overview

    The Bullmastiff is not a vicious guard dog, even though he was bred as a foreboding watch dog. He silently watches over his people, but he will not bite and he will rarely bark. Instead, he was bred to knock his prey to the ground with his substantial barrel body. Males can weigh up to 130 pounds and stand up to 27 inches tall, so their size can be intimidating on its own.

    These big, steady dogs make loyal, constant companions for families who appreciate the sense of security this gentle giant can provide. Their majestic appearance and noble, easy-going temperament will help them find a place in most families.

  • Personality

    Despite their reputation as a guardians and protectors, Bullmastiffs are actually surprisingly gentle and docile, especially with those they trust. They become extremely loyal to their owners, and they love to show their affection by licking and snuggling. These large dogs are not very active. They will tend to look up at you with their solicitous, pleading eyes when you suggest exercise they believe is too vigorous.

    The Bullmastiff is a little bit of a lug who will take some time growing into his big body. Help him out by training him to understand his size and respect others' space. They will quickly grow to respect an authoritative handler. Bullmastiffs can be aggressive with other dogs, so make sure they are socialized with dogs of their own size and smaller from a young age.

  • Coat Care

    Bullmastiffs have short, dense coats. Because of their short noses and wrinkly muzzles, they are prone to heat exhaustion, so they will prefer staying inside on warmer days. Their coats are red, fawn or brindle with black markings on the ears and muzzle.

Brushing

A daily brushing with a soft brush will be enough to keep the Bullmastiff's coat shiny and healthy. They do not shed much, nor do they collect debris in their coat, so they are fairly low-maintenance to groom.

Bathing

With preparation, perseverance and a positive attitude, bathing can become a fun and fulfilling part of the regular grooming cycle, while helping your dog avoid many diseases and infections.

The general rule of thumb for dog bathing is every three months but dogs with short coats do produce a distinctive dog odor, so your nose may encourage you to bathe them more frequently - about every 8-12 weeks. The coat should end up fresh smelling, shiny, with no loose or shedding hair. First give the dog a good brushing to remove dead hair and mats. Place a rubber mat in the tub to provide secure footing and fill the tub with three to four inches of lukewarm water. Use a spray hose, pitcher or unbreakable cup to wet the dog, taking caution to avoid getting water in the eyes, ears and nose. Massage in pet shampoo, saving the head for last. Immediately rinse thoroughly, starting with the head to prevent soap from dripping into the eyes. Towel dry. Wipe wrinkled breeds with a soft cloth and make sure they are totally dry after bathing; high-velocity dryers work great to remove excessive loose hair with shedding; coat should be fresh smelling, shiny, with no loose or shedding hair.

Hair Clipping

Clipping or trimming your dog’s coat is far easier than you would ever imagine. With the right clipper, trimmer and scissors, giving your dog a haircut is easy on your wallet and your schedule.

Most dogs with short coats generally require occasional trims and tidying up in areas of excessive hair growth with trimmers or blunt scissors. It's always wise to take a dog for a short walk or exercise to calm them down before trimming. Remember to brush the coat first to remove tangles and mats. Use a trimmer or a scissors to even out areas around the tail, paws, sanitary areas and chest, as needed. When finished, the coat should lay flat and smooth against the body of most short-haired dogs.

Nails

Because Bullmastiffs are not particularly active, they may need their nails trimmed more frequently if they do not wear them down naturally.

Eyes / Ears

Not all breeds and coat styles require routine trimming in and around the eyes and ears but all should undergo regular inspection and cleaning around these sensitive areas. Doing so will help prevent the development of infections that could seriously damage these amazing organs.

It is always important to routinely clean your dog's eyes and ears, and examine for potential infections. Some short-coated dogs, like hounds and mastiffs, have large, sensitive ears that should be checked weekly for infection and cleaned with a cotton ball. Gently wipe a cotton ball moistened with mineral oil, olive oil or witch hazel in your dog's ear, being careful to avoid the ear canal. Never use a Q-Tip, which could cause damage to the inner ear if your dog suddenly shakes or jerks his head. Bushy hair growth within the ear can be thinned with tweezers or blunt scissors. Use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around the eyes, ears and face. If you have a small dog, like an Pug, take special care to clean around their eyes with a cotton ball or soft cloth and use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around their eyes to make sure they are comfortable. Dogs with facial wrinkles, like Pugs and Dogues de Bordeaux, be wiped down at least weekly to prevent infection.

Teeth

Many owners do not realize how important it is to brush your pet’s teeth on a regular basis. Some dogs are prone to dental problems and sensitive teeth, especially small dogs with tiny teeth and dogs with special diets. These problems can be easily combatted with frequent brushing.

Cavities are rare with dogs but gum disease caused by tartar buildup is not, which is why they require regular brushing with toothpaste and a toothbrush formulated specifically for dogs. While daily brushing is ideal, doing so on a weekly basis will be a big help in avoiding the need to bring your dog to a veterinarian for a cleaning, which usually has to be done under sedation.