Posts Tagged ‘Neapolitan mastiff’


Believe it or not I once thought retrievers were boring dogs. The ones I had were nice dogs, biddable and clever with gentle natures. I didn’t realize how unique they were.

I wanted a Neapolitan mastiff.

I wanted one badly.

Not because I thought they were great guard dogs.

I thought they looked cool.

I loved that they were the dogs of the Ancient Romans, Greeks, and Assyrians.

I liked the idea of a Neapolitan mastiff.

I didn’t know any of these dogs personally.

But some friends of the family got one.

They had always had goldens and Labs before.

Their dog was cute as a puppy.

But they can’t be raised as casually as some retrievers.

They must be socialized.

This dog bonded so closely to his family.

But he hated everyone else.

The reality of the dog began to set in.

These dogs aren’t easy to handle.

They might be nice in Harry Potter films.

But the truth is they are an image dog.

They are meant only for special owners– ones who really get dogs.

My advice to anyone wanting any dog of any breed is to really get to understand the dogs as they are. The images and lore bring about romantic thoughts. But the truth is as it always will be. Each dog is an organism with its own emotions, drives, and instincts. Each dog that was originally bred for a purpose is going to have some of these traits in different concentrations and permutations.

These differences in instinct, drive, and behavioral tendencies mean that different dog breeds often behave as differently as distinct species.

I can handle retrievers and herding breeds. I can’t handle an old-fashioned guardian mastiff. And recognizing one’s own abilities is really important in determining which dog breed you should get.

If everyone would just take the time to do the research before choosing a dog, both humans and dogs would be far better off.

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Return to a more natural-looking body type with fewer wrinkles says the KC standard revision.

Characteristics Some loose fitting skin over body and head permitted, not to be excessive. [Delete ‘with a double dewlap’].

Head and Skull Head fairly large with broad short skull, broad across cheeks. Head proportion: skull length two thirds, to muzzle one third. Skull flat and parallel to topline of muzzle. [Delete ‘Well pronounced’] Definite stop, nose should not protrude beyond vertical line of muzzle. Nose large with well open nostrils. Lips fleshy and thick. The upper lips form an inverted ‘v’ when viewed from the front. Muzzle deep and square when viewed from the front. [Delete ‘with deep flews’] Loose skin on head permitted, [delete ‘forming wrinkles and folds’] but without excess.

Eyes Clean eyes, set forward, well apart, rather rounded. Rims [delete ‘fairly’] tight without [delete ‘excessive’] haw. Rim pigmentation to tone with nose colour. Free from obvious eye problems.

Neck Fairly short, stocky, very muscular. [Delete ‘dewlap from lower jaw reaching mid-point of neck’]

Body Longer than height at withers. Broad, well muscled chest, ribcage reaching at least to elbow. Ribs long and well sprung. Topline straight, sloping slightly from the withers, line of belly parallel to topline.

Hindquarters Broad loin, well let into backline, slightly rounded with well developed muscle. Croup broad, muscular, with slight slope. Thighs long, broad, moderate stifle, powerful hocks. [Delete ‘Dewclaws (single or double) removed’].

[No change to General Appearance, Temperament,  Ears, Mouth Forequarters, Feet, Tail, Gait/Movement, Coat, Colour, Size, Faults and Note].

Full working group revisions here.

See also Are Neapolitan mastiffs healthy?

A KC revision here would not change how they operate internationally, because the Neo, unlike the Lab, is not a native British breed.

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