Mastiffs are large dogs known to be gentle giants. They are highly intelligent and calm by nature loving nothing more than to be in a home environment and involved in everything that goes on around them. They form extremely long bonds with their owners which in short means they thrive on human contact and as such are best suited to families where at least one person usually stays at home when everyone else is out of the house. They are also often referred to as English Mastiffs and thanks to their sheer size, they need lot of space both indoors and outside so they can express themselves freely.
Mastiffs are among the most ancient breeds around although the dogs we see today are not the same as those seen centuries ago. There are records of the breed that date back to the 15th century when they were used to guard and protect. When they invaded the lands, the Romans were so impressed with dogs they found in Britain that they took them back to Rome with them where they were used as fighting dogs in Rome’s arenas. Later, these large, impressive dogs found favour with the Normans when they conquered Britain too.
However, after the end of the Second World War, the Mastiff nearly vanished altogether, but fortunately breeding stock was imported back to the UK and breed enthusiasts set up careful and selective programmes to save the Mastiff from extinction. Slowly, breed numbers rose and the quality of dogs also improved with many breeders producing well-bred puppies with fewer hereditary health issues.
Today, the Mastiff remains a popular breed not only here in the UK, but elsewhere in the world thanks to their charming natures and the fact they are so loyal and affectionate although anyone wishing to share their home with one of these impressive dogs would need to have enough space to accommodate them.