Pyrenean Mastiff: Everything About this Breed

Despite its large size, the Pyrenean Mastiff is characterized by being a very gentle and noble dog that, in addition, can become obedient if it is trained in the correct way.
Pyrenean Mastiff: Everything About this Breed

Last update: 05 August, 2021

The Pyrenean Mastiff is a giant breed of dog that formerly fulfilled the function of protecting herds. This great guardian is considered very faithful, intelligent, and loving. In addition, it turns out to be excellent company for those looking to have a calm, yet protective dog at home.

This large breed requires some care and attention to fully reach its life expectancy, which is between 8 and 12 years. If you have a Pyrenean Mastiff at home, below you can find everything you need to know about this dog.

Origin of the Pyrenean Mastiff

The Pyrenean Mastiff is one of the Spanish dog breeds. According to experts, this dog arose after the cross between the Spanish Mastiff and the Pyrenean Mountain Dog. Specifically, it’s a breed native to the Aragonese Pyrenees and experts believe that it appeared in Spain centuries ago, brought by navigators who came from the Mediterranean.

Over time, it has been used to protect herds and livestock. It was even used to drive away predators such as the wolf and the bear, due to its imposing and robust appearance. However, after the Spanish Civil War, it went into decline due to financial difficulties, as it was expensive to keep a dog that size.

In the seventies, Rafael Malo Alcrudo began to recover the breed with the few specimens that were found in the field and had typical characteristics of the traditional mastiff. Following this, in 1977, the foundation of the Mastín Club of the Pyrenees of Spain was founded.

A Pyrenean mastiff.

Characteristics

The Pyrenean Mastiff belongs to the Molossi, a group of dogs characterized by their muscular build, with strong jaws and a short muzzle. This dog has a large and moderately long head and its eyes are small, almond-shaped and dark. In addition, their ears are medium, drooping, flat and triangular in shape.

In the same way, it’s a dog with thick, elastic skin, a wide, strong and flexible neck; and thick, moderately long hair. The Pyrenean Mastiff has a rectangular body, and is very strong and robust. Females can weigh between 55 and 77 kilograms, while males reach 90 to 100 kilograms.

Regarding their size, according to the International Cynological Federation, in height at the withers, the females of this breed can reach between 72 and 75 centimeters. The males, on the other hand, measure from 77 to 81 centimeters.

Behavior

Although its size can make it look like a very imposing dog, the Pyrenean Mastiff is characterized by being a very gentle and noble breed. It’s affectionate, particularly intelligent, courageous and has a great guardian instinct. Therefore, it’s an ideal animal for children, and it gets along very well with them.

The Pyrenean Mastiff is indifferent when strangers are around, but isn’t overly aggressive. On the other hand, it has a good relationship with other dogs, but if necessary, it does not hesitate to show its fighting skills.

In general, it’s a personable, self-assured and laid-back dog. In the same way, it’s quite reliable and very faithful, especially with the members of the household where it lives. The Pyrenean Mastiff has an alert expression and a low and deep bark.

Education

For the Pyrenean Mastiff to be raised as an obedient dog, it’s important that its training begins as a puppy. This breed can take time to attend to orders and it takes time and patience to do so.

A good education and training will allow you to have control over the dog. However, this achievement is obtained progressively and with the help of incentives (prizes and affection). In addition, followed by basic obedience, the Pyrenean Mastiff will be able to fulfill exercises, activities and other canine tasks.

In addition, this large dog should also be educated so that it’s able to socialize in environments different from the ones it’s used to. Above all, you must avoid it becoming a lazy dog.

Pyrenean mastiff care

Like any pet, the Pyrenean Mastiff requires certain care that allows it to develop correctly and have quality of life. Here are some of the most important points regarding the care of this breed:

  • Vaccinations and professional review: As a first measure, it’s important that the Pyrenean Mastiff has the entire vaccination scheme required to prevent complications in its health. Similarly, it’s vital that a veterinarian periodically evaluates the dog and determines its condition.
  • Food: Due to its large size, it’s essential to control its weight. Make sure you provide this canine with a complete and balanced diet and be careful not to give it more food than it needs. This dog is gluttonous and could become overweight and obese.
  • Hygiene: It’s necessary to brush the coat of the Pyrenean Mastiff daily to avoid the accumulation of dirt on its body. In addition, this is useful in order to detect possible parasites such as fleas and ticks in time. Also, it’s best to bathe your dog once a month in order to keep it clean and soft.

Health

To take care of the Pyrenean Mastiff’s health, it’s important to carry out the aforementioned care. Among the complications that this breed can have is stomach torsion, a condition that is often caused by it eating too fast.

Similarly, this breed is prone to hereditary health problems, such as hip dysplasia, a condition that prevents proper placement of the femur in the pelvic bone. As a result, this pathology causes a lot of pain and difficulty in walking.

Deafness, Wobbler syndrome, coagulation disorders, platelet dysfunction and tricuspid valve dysplasia are other diseases that the Pyrenean Mastiff can suffer from. Always remember to be aware of the health status of this dog and don’t forget to take it for check-ups with a professional.

Finally, keep in mind that the Pyrenean Mastiff is a noble dog that will always give you loyalty and love. However, you should always make sure it receives the same affection in return. Part of appreciating a pet is reflected in providing care that gives them a healthy lifestyle.

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