Mastiffs are a type of dogs which were developed for protection work, hunting, and blood sports such as bull-baiting. They are large, powerful, and best characterised by their droopy ears, bulky heads, and short muzzles. Mastiff-type breeds include the Rottweiler, Cane Corso, Presa Canario, Fila Brasiliero, English Mastiff, Boerboel, Boxer, and Bulldogs. These dogs tend to develop and grow very slowly, so are best viewed as long-term developmental projects. Other characteristics include strongly bonding with their families, being highly protective in the home, and somewhat orally fixated. While this does not apply to all breeds, many mastiff-types are prone to laziness.
It is for these reasons that despite their popularity, few mastiff-type breeds are appropriate for high-level protection work. We have found that Rottweilers and Cane Corsos are the most suitable because of their high intelligence, work drive, and energy levels. Well-bred working Rottweilers and Cane Corsos are just as good as a German or Belgian Shepherd with their more relaxed temperaments making them even better pets for certain types of homes. While individual dogs such as Boerboels or American Bulldogs can be trained and developed into good protection dogs, they tend to be rarer and require more work than a Rottweiler or Cane Corso would.
If you own a mastiff-type protection dog, you can expect them to be a formidable guardian, but also have an off switch and be equally happy relaxing with you and your family. These kinds of dogs thrive when spending time with their owners, form particularly strong dogs. They are famously good with children, and perhaps somewhat lower maintenance than a German or Belgian Shepherd. Sensitive and loving but stubborn, they require consistent training with firm boundaries as they may otherwise become uncontrollable given their size and strength.
Protection Dogs Worldwide holds and trains the UK’s best working Rottweilers and Cane Corsos for family protection work. If you are interested in purchasing one, please DM us on any of our social media accounts or email [email protected].
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