The short, smooth coat needs occasional brushing; head wrinkles must be kept clean and dry.
The Mastiff is a powerful yet gentle and loyal companion, but because of his size and need for space, he is best suited for country or suburban life. The breed requires light exercise and minimal grooming.
Depending on the size of your dog as an adult you are going to want to feed them a formula that will cater to their unique digestive needs through the various phases of their life. Many dog food companies have breed-specific formulas for small, medium, large and giant breeds.
The Mastiff is a giant breed and has a lifespan of 8 to 10 years. What you feed your dog is an individual choice, but working with your veterinarian and/or breeder will be the best way to determine frequency of meals as a puppy and the best adult diet to increase his longevity. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.
Grooming can be a wonderful bonding experience for you and your pet. Their strong fast-growing nails should be trimmed regularly with a nail clipper or grinder to avoid overgrowth, splitting and cracking. Their ears should be checked regularly to avoid a buildup of wax and debris which can result in an infection. Teeth should be brushed regularly.
Adequate socialization is an extremely important part of a puppy's training. If you cannot locate classes, take your puppy out often to places where it can meet people and other dogs in a friendly atmosphere such as parks and shopping centers. Positive reinforcement training tends to work best for most Mastiffs. Many Mastiffs have received their AKC Canine Good Citizen certificates and are wonderful therapy dogs. Mastiffs do not need protection training. Mastiffs are excellent companion dogs, are intelligent and eager to please their owners. This can be demonstrated by the numerous titles earned by our gentle giants in conformation, obedience, agility, carting, rally.
Like all breeds there may be some health issues, like bone cancer, lymphoma, Canine Multifocal Retinopathy (CMR) - retinal folds, Cystinuria can cause kidney stones in intact males, hip or elbow dysplasia and Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). Some dogs may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Mastiffs are healthy dogs.
Working with a responsible breeder, those wishing to own a Mastiff can gain the education they need to know about specific health concerns within the breed. Good breeders utilize genetic testing of their breeding stock to reduce the likelihood of disease in their puppies.