Neapolitan Mastiff Dog


 The Neapolitan Mastiff or Mastino Napolitano is a large, strong, and muscular dog, with many folds in the skin and is much longer than it is tall. Previously, these dogs were used for wars and as guard dogs due to their great loyalty, strong temperament, and physical strength. But today they are wonderful pets, especially for those people who have a lot of space in their homes and have a lot of time to devote to these pets.

In addition to this, they also need to be socialized because they are dogs and to teach them through positive training, so it is recommended that they be pets for people who already have experience in dog care. If you are considering adopting a pet and you are very interested in a Neapolitan Mastiff, take a look at the Neapolitan Mastiff's profile and check its history, physical characteristics, and care, among other things.

The origin of the Neapolitan Mastiff

When the Romans conquered the British Isles, they brought with them the huge Molossians who used war dogs and mercilessly attacked their enemy hosts. However, they encountered more ferocious dogs defending the islands. The Romans were so fond of the ancestors of the English mastiff, that they crossed them with their Molossus, and thus the ancestors of the modern Neapolitan mastiff appeared. These dogs were fierce, bloodthirsty, and ideal for war.

Over time, these mastiffs were descended almost exclusively into the Naples region and were used primarily as guard dogs. In 1946, a dog show was held in Naples, and a canine pathologist named Pierre Scanziani got acquainted with the Neapolitan Mastiff in that city, which had been hidden from the world until then. He then devoted himself with other fans to promoting the breed and increasing its population.

Today the Neapolitan Mastiff is a dog that is famous all over the world and has lost much of the aggressive and violent temper of its ancestors.

The Neapolitan Mastiff belongs to the Molossian group, which is one of the oldest and most widespread groups. However, there is a lot of controversy surrounding the history and origin of these dogs. What is known for certain is that the Molossians were spread throughout the Roman Empire by the Romans themselves and the European tribes who captured them.

There are dozens of theories about the origin of the Molossians, but they can be divided into five main groups of origin: from Central Asia, Greece, Britain, the Middle East, and from the dogs of the Alan tribe.

The Molossians used it extensively. They guarded livestock and property, were hunters and gladiators, fighting dogs. As mentioned by Aristotle and Aristophanes, they terrified the Frankish, Gothic and British tribes.

After the fall of the Roman Empire, they did not disappear, but their roots are firmly established throughout Italy. During the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, they served as guard dogs, valued for their protective nature and ferocity.

What does the Neapolitan Mastiff look like?

This heavy, stocky dog ​​has a curious appearance due to its abundance and loose fur. His head is short and has many wrinkles and folds. The skull is broad and flat, while the frontonasal depression (stop) is well defined. The color of the nose corresponds to the coat, being black in black specimens, brown in brown dogs, and dark brown in dogs of another color. The eyes are round, well separated from each other, and slightly sunken. The ears are triangular, small, and raised. It was cut in the past, but fortunately, this practice has been neglected and even illegal in many countries.

The body of this mastiff is longer than it is tall and therefore presents an oblong shape. It is very strong and powerful. The chest is wide and open. The tail is very thick at the base and tapering off towards the end. The habit of amputating them to about two-thirds of their normal length persist, but the custom is also falling into disuse and is cruel being rejected.

The Neapolitan Mastiff's coat is short, harsh, harsh, and dense. It can be gray, gray-gray, black, brown, reddish, and deep reddish. Any of these colors can also appear as dark gray. In addition, they may have small white spots on the chest and fingertips.

However, the size and nature of the dog limited the number of people they could keep, and it remained rare. In 1996, the breed was recognized by the United Kennel Club (UKC), and the American Kennel Club (AKC) only in 2004.
Despite their growing popularity, Napoletano Mastiffs remain a rare breed.

So, in 2010, they ranked 113th out of 167, in terms of the number of dogs registered with the AKC. Most are used as companion dogs, but they also serve a lot of watchdogs.

Their personality has softened in recent decades, but they are still excellent guard dogs, with the strongest qualities of any mastiff.

Is a Neapolitan Mastiff a good family dog?

The Neapolitan Mastiff is a very domestic dog with a firm temperament, assertive, independent, intelligent, and loyal. He tends to be reserved and wary of strangers but can become a very social dog if encouraged by a puppy through good socialization. He is a quiet dog who enjoys a home life alongside his family and enjoys all kinds of outdoor activities where he needs a good dose of daily physical activity.

Neapolitan Mastiffs do not usually bark for no reason and are not very active for their size, but they can be very destructive if they do not have the company and affection that it requires. As with all breeds, he is a very social dog that needs a family core to be a part of to be happy. He is loyal to the extreme, a very loyal dog that is cared for and loves as much as he does.

It must be remembered that although a social dog and loyal to its family, the Neapolitan Mastiff may not be fully aware of its large size, so games with children and strangers should always be supervised, and understood as part of the safety of the dog - a dog of its own and those who are ignorant of its strength Great physical.

It is a dog that should be adopted by an experienced person who is familiar with the dog's behavior, positive education, and training, as well as the care it requires. It is not a recommended breed for those who know nothing about dog grooming.

Finally, no child can be as dominant as is required for this breed. If you need a bodyguard or guard, few breeds can do it better than a Mastino. But, if you have never had a dog before, then choosing Napoletano will be a mistake. They need a strong hand and a strong-willed master.

Neapolitan Mastiff, bathing, and care

Caring for the hair of the Neapolitan mastiff does not require much effort, because sometimes brushing is enough to remove dead hair. However, it is essential to clean the folds of the skin frequently (particularly those near the mouth which can hold food debris) to avoid the growth of fungi and other skin problems. These dogs drool a lot, so they are not ideal for people who are obsessed with hygiene.

Although they are not the most active dogs, the Neapolitan Mastiff needs long walks every day and does not adapt well to life in cramped apartments. They need medium or large space to feel comfortable. It is highly recommended that they can enjoy a large garden. They do not tolerate high temperatures well, so they must have good shelter with shade. Review the symptoms of heatstroke to learn how to spot and prevent it.

Teaching mastiffs in Naples

A Neapolitan Mastiff needs to socialize from an early age with all kinds of people, animals, and environments to avoid future fears or reactive reactions. It is essential to understand that socialization is the key to enjoying a stable, healthy adult dog. On the other hand, we must also bear in mind that it is very important to avoid situations that the dog might associate with being bad. A bad experience with a dog or a car, for example, can cause him to change his personality and become reactive.

We will always use positive reinforcement and avoid penalties, choke collars, or physical harm. A dog with these characteristics should never be subdued or forced into violence. Before any suspicion of behavior problems arise, you should go to a dog breeder or behavior specialist and let yourself be guided by the experience of a professional.

We will continue to teach him the basic commands of obedience, essential to a good relationship with us, with the environment, and with others. It is highly recommended to spend 5-10 minutes per day reviewing already learned commands and learning new ones. Promoting intelligence games and new experiences and stimulating the dog's physical and mental development will help us make the dog happy and have good behavior.

Neapolitan Mastiff Health

This breed is susceptible to the following diseases:

hip dysplasia,
Elbow dysplasia

In addition, the breeding of these dogs often needs assistance due to their large weight. It is common for fertilization to be done by IVF and for delivery to require a cesarean section. To prevent and detect any health problem quickly, it is best to visit your vet every 6 months and stick to a strict vaccination schedule.


It is better to adapt it to the private house and the area to be guarded. They live quietly in an apartment, but they need space.

The sheds are moderate but because of the coat size in abundance. It is necessary to comb regularly, as well as take care of the skin folds.

They perfectly behave by the intentions of unwanted guests with their appearance. He is rarely aggressive without reason, but socialization is important here so that Mastino understands what is normal and what is not.

Those who are lazy and love to eat can become obese if they do not exercise. Excess weight significantly reduces the already short life.

Neapolitan Mastiff is not recommended for those owners who have not had dogs before. They need a strong hand and fortitude, they respect their master.

For most hackers, the deep bark and frightening look are enough, but they also use force without problems.

They love people and should live in a house, not in a chain or a cage.
Puppies are active, but to avoid health problems in the future, activity should be limited.

Mastino can be devastating if they get bored. Regular exercise, training, and communication make their life rich.

They get along well with older children, but younger ones can fall out. Socialization is mandatory with children and does not leave the smartest dog alone with a child!


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