Bullmastiff Quick Summary
Also Known AsGamekeeper's Dog
Height (at withers)24-27in (61-69cm)
Weight100-135lbs (45-61 kg)
Hair Colour(s)Varies
Lifespan8-10 years
Energy LevelMedium
Litter size4-13
Barking TendencyMedium
Exercise requirementsLow
Ease of trainingMedium
Suitability for kidsMedium
Animal compatabilityMedium
Aggression levelsMedium
Distress if leftLow

The Bullmastiff is a powerful and muscular dog with strong, sturdy legs. Its chest is wide with well sprung ribs, and the back is short and level. The head is large and square, with a short muzzle, a broad nose with wide nostrils, and the face has a black mask. The coat is short and sleek and the colouring varies and can be red and fawn, fawn, brindle and red.


Bullmastiffs are loyal and devoted, as well as fearless, protective and alert. These giant dogs are also confident, yet gentle and mild mannered, and being cheerful, they make great companions and family pets. This is an intelligent breed, and one that is quick to learn, but they are also very stubborn and this can make training difficult. For this reason they are best suited for experienced dog owners, as they need someone that will be confident and assertive yet attentive. Their chewing tendencies as puppies will need attention too. Bullmastiffs will get along well enough with children they have been raised with and when properly socialised, but these are big dogs and so may not be suitable around smaller kids. They are fearless yet docile and will be fine with other pets too, but may want to express dominance over other dogs and will not be happy about strange animals venturing into their territory. Bullmastiffs can be reserved around strangers and may even drive them away, but they will always be loyal and loving with their family. And as they have a protective outlook, this makes them effective watchdogs.

History & Skills

Bullmastiffs originate from Great Britain and were bred from Mastiffs and the Bulldogs, which explains their name. Developed by gamekeepers, they were bred for tracking and overpowering poachers. These days Bullmastiffs are primarily used as family pets and companions, and are natural home guardians.

Breed Specific Ailments

Bullmastiffs tend to live beteen 8-10 years, and like many dogs, are subject to certain health problems. These include cancer, hip and elbow dysphasia, torn anterior cruciate ligaments, bloat, subaortic stenosis, skin and coat problems, thyroid problems and entropian. This breed should be kept out of extreme heat and sun, as they can suffer heatstroke.


Bullmastiffs are medium shedders and are low maintenance as far as grooming is required. The coat needs an occasional brushing to keep it in good condition and to remove any dead hair, and a rub down with a massage glove often suffices too. During times of heavy shedding they will need brushing on a more regular basis.

Exercise & Environment

Bullmastiffs like to live indoors with their families, and their exercise needs can usually be met with a daily half-hour walk and access to a yard or garden for play. Take note that these dogs are very intolerant to extreme heat, and like other short muzzled breeds, they must not be allowed to overheat on warm days as this can lead to respiratory problems.


FCIFCI - Federation Cynologique Internationale
KCThe Kennel Club (UK)
AKCAKC - American Kennel Club

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