Spanish Mastiff (Mastín Español) FCI Standard
The first Spanish Mastiff was exhibited in the early XX century but its standard was set up only in 1946. Currently the popularity of this breed in its native Spain equals the popularity of the Labrador Retriever in North America. In fact it represents the national dog breed of Spain with nearly 24 000 specimens living in this country. The density of population of the Mastín español is highest in the province of Leon in north-western Spain, which is called the Spanish Mastiff capital. It is an inborn guardian and in its homeland it’s still kept to guard both livestock and the home. This truly multi-purpose dog also can be trained to carry out police work, military work, tracking and hunting.
The Spanish Mastiff is acknowledged by such reputable dogs’ organisations as the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) and United Kennel Club (UKC). European fanciers appreciate this dog for its tolerance to all kind of weather conditions as well as for its intense defensive instinct. Nonetheless its number outside its native country remains relatively small.
The proper socialised dog is quite reliable around strangers but it still retains much of its aloofness around them. Its even disposition purports that the Spanish Mastiff will never become unreasonably aggressive towards an unfamiliar person. Its intimidating appearance and natural alertness make it an excellent watchdog. This alert dog is able to judge the situation very accurately and resorts to violence only in extreme circumstances. That’s why it usually becomes an almost ideal guard dog.
The Spanish Mastiff is usually polite with other canines if it has interacted with them since its puppyhood. This dogs’ owner should know that this breed is rather slow to mature and may preserve its puppy light-heartedness until 2 ½ to 3 years of age. This can potentially create some problems since young dog doesn’t know the rules of proper behaviour in the company of other dogs. As a rule the well-mannered specimen will be quite tolerable towards other species of animals and will live with a home cat in harmony. Nevertheless it’s better if the dog and other pet co-habituate together since an early age.
• canine hip dysplasia;
• hearts problems;
• eyes problems;
• gastric torsion.
The Spanish Mastiff reacts best to the training techniques, which are grounded on positive reinforcement and its favourite food incentives. On the contrary if you treat your dog harsh than you will completely lose its trust and get self-willed and resentful animal determined to ignore all your commands.
The fully matured dog will be quite satisfied with two long walks on a daily basis. It will feel itself most happy if it has been trusted with the work it was designed to do, namely guarding. The Spanish Mastiff isn’t advisable for sport-minded person who prefers his dog to jog, run beside a bike, or to play various outdoors games.