American Mastiff - Dog Breed Info, Temperament & Facts

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The American Mastiff is a huge dog, reaching up to 200 pounds and 36 inches in height. Despite their size, they are known for being calm and non-aggressive. However, they do require an experienced dog handler who can provide strong leadership, as they can be independent and have their own ideas. It’s important to socialize them early on to ensure positive interactions with people and other animals. Although they may drool less than English Mastiffs, some drooling should still be expected.

Due to their size, American Mastiffs need extra space in a home or apartment. However, they are generally inactive indoors and enjoy being couch potatoes. They are loving and patient with their families, especially with children, and make great watchdogs. With the right owner who can provide patience and leadership, the American Mastiff will be a loyal and compassionate companion.

Below, we look at American Mastiff dog breed, its history, personality, pros and cons of owning an American Mastiff, characteristics, and must-know facts. We will also examine how to care for this breed and more. Prepare for a tail-wagging adventure into the world of American Mastiffs!

Dog Breed American Mastiff
Size Giant
Weight 140-180 lbs (average)
Height 26-34″ (average)
Location United States
Ancestry English Mastiff, Anatolian Mastiff
Date of Origin 1990s
Group Working, Companion
Life Expectancy 10-12 years
Price $1000 – $1500
Family Canidae
Scientific Name Canis Lupus Familiaris

📖 Breed History

The American Mastiff is a newer breed that has its roots in the Mastiff dogs, which have been around for centuries. Originally bred as English war dogs, they were known for their ferocity and tenacity in attacking enemy soldiers. During times of peace, they were used to guard wealthy estates and even trained in bear baiting. However, over time, their aggressive traits were bred out, resulting in a more gentle and docile temperament.

Mastiffs arrived in America with colonists on the Mayflower and were primarily used for protecting families, livestock, and property. Unfortunately, inbreeding issues began to arise, leading to health complications. To address these problems, a breeder named Fredericka Wagner from Piketon, Ohio decided to create a new Mastiff breed. Starting in the late 1980s, Wagner carefully crossed the Anatolian dog with the Mastiff, gradually breeding out the undesirable traits. The result was the American Mastiff, which had a tighter lip line and drooled less than its parent Mastiffs.

By the late 1990s, Wagner stopped outcrossing and focused on breeding within her existing dog lines. In 2002, she established the American Mastiff Breeders Council, allowing a few other breeders to join. Currently, there are only 11 breeder members in the council, and they work diligently to ensure the health and temperament of their dogs. While there is still debate about the American Mastiff’s qualities, it is undeniable that breeders have successfully created a gentle giant with excellent health and temperament.

🐕 American Mastiff Appearance

The American Mastiff is a large dog with a maximum weight of 200 pounds. They resemble their English counterparts in appearance, but they are significantly leaner, have a longer snout, less wrinkles, and appear to have a friendlier countenance. They have a strong, rectangular head with floppy, high-set ears as well as a black nose, dry mouth (reduced drooling), and drier skin. Despite having a big, solidly muscled physique, this formidable dog yet has an athletic appearance. Their deep chest melds into their strong neck, which has a little arch. Having a set of enormous, padded paws completes the creature’s long, straight spine and muscular, robust legs. Their tail is large and powerful, like a whip. This breed has a sinister, even threatening appearance at first glance. Their hues, which include fawn, brindle, and apricot and can vary in tone, are accented by complementing white markings, and they have a black mask. That is, until you catch a glimpse of their warm, witty brown eyes.

👀 Eye Color Brown
🐽 Nose Color Black
🐕 Coat Color Fawn, Brown, Brindle

Fun Fact: American Mastiff dogs need for social interaction is average. This breed likes being around people or other animals, but they don’t mind being left alone for a few hours either.

🐶 Traits & Temperament of American Mastiff

Even though this friendly dog’s size may seem intimidating to a guest, they are not aggressive unless you or a family member is in danger. Then, take caution, since they will fiercely and valiantly defend their family. The American Mastiff is a calm, respectable dog that is completely attached to you; they are nice and kind and might even have a tendency to be “clingy. ” They enjoy spending time with their family and get lonely when they are separated. They do have some behaviors, such farts, snoring, fur shedding, and occasional drool, that may require some getting used to. Despite being dignified, they lack refinement. In the company of strangers, they might be apprehensive, but once they get to know someone, they become their typically amiable selves. As they will warn you of intruders, they make good watchdogs. As they want to do things their own way and may reject your ways, they can be difficult to teach. Yelling or losing your temper won’t help this dog; patience and love are required. Make the training enjoyable instead. Lessen the number of times something is repeated to avoid monotony, and include mental challenges to make people think harder about how to solve problems. Although they like kids and are tolerant and friendly with them, young dogs should always be under adult supervision because of their size, which can accidentally hurt youngsters.

🤝 Are American Mastiffs Friendly or Aggressive?

American Mastiff dogs tend to get along well with other pets and are generally friendly towards strangers. They are also known to be kid-friendly, making them a great choice for families with children. Similarly, American Mastiffs are average in terms of their friendliness towards cats and other dogs. Due to their calm and gentle nature, they are often recommended as companions for elderly individuals.

This breed is known for being:

  • Dignified
  • Protective
  • Courageous
  • Affectionate
  • Good-natured
  • Calm

🐩 American Mastiff Care & Maintenance

Normally, you can get away with brushing your dog once per week, but if your dog is going through a period of significant shedding, you should increase the frequency of brushing to at least twice weekly. The American Mastiff hardly ever has to be bathed, but it is a good idea to give them a moist cloth rubdown every other week simply to keep them smelling fresh. Despite having a short, straight coat, this dog’s sheer size means that grooming will take some time. Your large buddy won’t be concerned about grooming time since they enjoy and desire your company. It is best to teach your dog when they are still young to become accustomed to having their teeth cleaned virtually every day, as well as having their ears checked and their toenails clipped. Your gentle giant can push you away and refuse to comply if you wait till later. To prevent drooling, this huge dog has to have their mouth cleaned after consuming food and liquids. American Mastiffs frequently experience eye issues and hyperthyroidism. To prevent exorbitant veterinarian care costs, get pet health insurance right now. You may compare policies from renowned firms like Figo and Spot using our tool for pet insurance. With only a few clicks, find your pet’s “pawfect” plan!

American Mastiff dogs have a moderate level of shedding, which is a normal part of their hair growth cycle. Brushing their fur regularly can help minimize the amount of hair that is shed. The frequency of shedding can vary depending on the dog’s overall health and the specific breed. In terms of bathing, American Mastiffs typically require a bath every 3-4 weeks.

🍖 Food: We recommend 4 cups daily, costing you about $2.75 – $3.00 daily, or roughly $80.00 – $90.00 a month.

🐾 Exercise: American Mastiff dogs exercise need is minimal. If you live a slow life, this breed can be a good choice for you.

This dog breed requires to be walked for roughly 10 miles per week, which equates to about 60 minutes of physical activity daily. This consistent moderate exercise regimen will help maintain their physical wellness and significantly contribute to their mental stimulation. Consciously setting aside this time for your furry friend can dramatically enhance their life quality, helping them stay energetic, healthy, and mentally alert.

Did you know: American Mastiff dogs have a lower energy level than other dogs. If you live a chilled life, this breed can be a good choice for you.

❤️‍🩹 American Mastiff Health & Issues

Some of the major concerns for American Mastiff Dog Breed can be:

  • Joint Dysplasia

While minor concerns include:

  • Skin Problems
  • Foreleg Lameness
  • Eye Problems
  • Hyperthyroidism

🤧 Important: Is American Mastiff hypoallergenic? No.

Bonus: Check out cool, creative, and funny names for American Mastiff.

⚡ American Mastiff Dog Breed Facts

What makes the American Mastiff a great choice for families with young children?
The American Mastiff is a great choice for families with young children because they are kind, gentle, and patient with them. They show tolerance and understanding towards children’s antics, making them a safe and reliable companion for kids.

Is the American Mastiff breed considered a suitable breed for apartment living?
The American Mastiff breed is not considered suitable for apartment living due to its giant size and need for extra space. They require a house or a living environment that can accommodate their size comfortably.

How much exercise does a American Mastiff require compared to other breeds?
Compared to other breeds, the American Mastiff does not require a significant amount of exercise. They are relatively inactive inside and can be considered as couch potatoes. However, regular exercise is still important to keep them healthy and maintain their weight.

Is the American Mastiff breed known for being good with other pets?
The American Mastiff breed is generally good with other pets, but proper socialization is essential. Early socialization helps them develop positive interactions with other animals, including other dogs and strangers.

What are other low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the American Mastiff?
Some low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the American Mastiff are the Bullmastiff, Great Dane, and Saint Bernard. These breeds also have a mellow temperament and do not require excessive grooming or exercise.

What are the common health issues that American Mastiffs are prone to?
American Mastiffs are prone to certain health issues, including hip dysplasia, bloat, and heart problems. Regular vet check-ups and a balanced diet can help prevent or manage these conditions.

Are American Mastiffs known to be easy to train compared to other breeds?
American Mastiffs can be stubborn to train, as they prefer to do things their own way. Patience, kindness, and positive reinforcement methods are necessary to effectively train them. Yelling or losing your cool will not yield good results.

Are American Mastiffs more prone to separation anxiety compared to other breeds?
American Mastiffs are known to be more prone to separation anxiety compared to some other breeds. They are highly devoted and attached to their family, making them more likely to experience distress when left alone for long periods.

Are there any dog breeds similar to the American Mastiff that are suitable for people with allergies?
Some dog breeds similar to the American Mastiff that are suitable for people with allergies are the Portuguese Water Dog, Irish Water Spaniel, and Poodle. These breeds have hypoallergenic coats that produce less dander, reducing the likelihood of triggering allergies.

What sizes of dogs similar to the American Mastiff are best for individuals or families with limited space?
For individuals or families with limited space, smaller-sized dogs similar to the American Mastiff, such as the Boxer or the Labrador Retriever, can be a suitable choice. These breeds are smaller in size but still have similar traits and temperaments.

Is the American Mastiff breed known to be good with children with special needs?
The American Mastiff breed is known to be good with children, including those with special needs. Their kind and patient nature make them a suitable companion for children who may require additional support and understanding.

How does the grooming and shedding needs of the American Mastiff?
The grooming and shedding needs of the American Mastiff are relatively low compared to some other breeds. While they do shed and have some slobber, they don’t require extensive grooming. Regular brushing and occasional baths are usually sufficient to keep their coat in good condition.


We use reliable and publicly available data and resources such as AKC and American Canine Registry to ensure that American Mastiff dog breed information is accurate and up to date. If you spot an error, please don’t hesitate to bring it to our attention.

Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy is a seasoned writer and an enthusiast of dog breed expertise. Having dedicated over 5 years to studying the intricacies of different dog breeds and their unique characteristics. His profound insights and love for our four-legged friends have made him an invaluable part of our DogsInsights.com team.

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