The Irish Mastiff: A Complete Guide

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While both small and large dogs make great companions, if looking for a larger breed to introduce into your life, it poses a few more considerations before purchasing.

It is very common for owners to choose a dog breed that is unsuited for their house or apartment due to an impulsive adoption or purchase which can be damaging to both the dog and owner.

Before deciding on a breed of dog, it is vital to examine your way of life and what type of dog would fit into it.

The Irish Mastiff is a beautiful and calmly disposed dog that makes it an ideal choice for a large dog lover with a smaller house.

Although huge in stature, they are very mild in temperament and would love to curl up in a warm spot near their owner.

The Irish Mastiff is the hybrid of an English Mastiff and an Irish Wolfhound. It is still incredibly rare and is only seeing a rise in popularity this decade.

Irish Mastiff laying on carpet
The Irish Mastiff is a big, cuddly dog that will suit any family.

The Mastiff has origins that date back to ancient times in China, and have marched alongside armies for centuries. They would be placed on the front line to pull carts and assist soldiers.

By the time World War 2 was nearly over, the Mastiff was nearly extinct but was saved due to a series of breeders in Britain revitalizing the species.

Today it is renowned as a very popular and effective house dog.

The Irish Wolfhound has origins that date back to 391 AD. They would hunt animals such as boar and elk, but their main target was the Irish Wolf, which is now extinct.

The population of the Irish Wolfhound began to dwindle in the 1800s along with the animal it used to hunt, but once again saw popularity with breeders later on in the century.

Today it is regarded as a great companion for any home.

In this guide today, I will detail all the vital traits and factors of the Irish Wolfhound for you, to consider whether or not this canine is for you.

If you’re looking for a gentle giant to share your life with it is worth looking into how the Irish Mastiff could be perfect for you.

Irish Mastiff Puppies – Before You Buy…

There’s a lot of things you need to consider when purchasing your first dog. You need to ready your household, schedule and a slew of other things to accommodate for this creature.

This dog needs to become a part of your family or signify the beginning of a new one, so your house needs to become its new home.

Things you need to consider include:

  • The amount of space in your household. The Irish Mastiff does well in small households provided has a nice, comfy place on the couch to sit beside you. It will also need a backyard to play in.
  • The amount of time you have to socialize with this dog. Chances are you’re going to have to switch your schedule around to accommodate this dog’s needs for socialization and conversation. However, if you have a family member that can be home to do this, that will also work.
  • Colour choice. Analyze the colors in which you can get this dog, and choose accordingly.
  • Gender choice. Choose between a boy and a girl.
  • Spaying/neutering preference. This one is important because it can help prevent serious health conditions. However, it will stop your dog from ever having puppies of its own.

What Price are Irish Mastiff Puppies?

When it comes to buying your first puppy, the price is a huge factor. If you can’t afford your chosen puppy, you can’t bring it home! Dogs aren’t cheap animals and often stretch your budget quite a bit.

Therefore, the price of a dog will determine what size you initially settle on, and which breed you eventually bring home.

Because the Irish Mastiff is so big, its price point is as well. You’re looking at spending around $1000 for a puppy from a reputable, established breeder, meaning that this is far more expensive than other large crossbreeds.

However, this is a cheap alternative when compared to the $2000+ price point of an Irish Wolfhound and the $1500 price point of a Mastiff.

So at the end of the day, the Irish Mastiff is a cheaper, more budget-friendly large dog when in comparison to its parent breeds.

If you find yourself still not wanting to pay this much, you can alternatively adopt an Irish Mastiff, and that will cost you as little as $100, with a $175 adoption fee.

However, this is still a rare crossbreed and could be hard to find at shelters.

If you want something cheaper, perhaps look at smaller crossbreeds instead.

Where to Find Reputable Irish Mastiff Breeders?

Finding a reputable Irish Mastiff breeder is going to be a bit of hard work. They are still somewhat of a rare breed and are often not bred by your local dog breeders due to their large size.

Finding an Irish Mastiff Breeder may result in a little bit of traveling. When visiting a breeder, you need to analyze a few specific components to determine whether or not they are reputable.

These include:

  • The space in which the puppies are kept pending purchase.
  • How clean and groomed the puppies are, as well as if they appear healthy or not.
  • The amount of socialization they get from the breeder.
  • The amount of knowledge the breeder has on the Irish Mastiff, and its parent breeds.
  • The amount of effort the breeder puts into trying to assist you with any further information.

3 Little-Known Facts About Irish Mastiff Puppies

  1. The Irish Mastiff, along with its parent breed the Irish Wolfhound, are two of the largest dog breeds in the world.
  2. The Irish Mastiff only needs to be bathed every few months.
  3. Don’t let its intimidating name and history fool you. The Irish Mastiff is quite a calm dog.
Irish Mastiff resting head
The Irish Mastiff only needs 8 miles of walking per week.

Physical Traits of the Irish Mastiff

One thing we know for sure about the Irish Mastiff is that it is incredibly big.

It has a simple, short coat that is incredibly dense and easy to groom, with colors that range from black, blue, brown, white, grey, tan and silver.

They do have somewhat of a wrinkly face, courtesy of the Mastiff genes, but this is usually hidden by its long muzzle.

The Irish Mastiff has a giant head with ears that looked cropped in comparison, and it has brown eyes and a black nose.

How Big is a Full-Grown Irish Mastiff?

The Irish Mastiff is one of the biggest dogs around, and it stands up to 3 feet tall! Lengthwise, it will grow to 29-34 inches long.

Concerning weight, the Irish Mastiff is just as big as it is long. It is going to clock in around 105-165 pounds in mass, which is bigger than most other large-sized breeds.

Because of this size, it is a necessity that you watch it around small children.

What is the Irish Mastiff’s Life Expectancy?

Unfortunately with a big size, comes a smaller lifespan. The Irish Mastiff has a lifespan of 7-12 years, which is significantly smaller than that of most large-sized breeds.

In comparison, the Irish Wolfhound is only slated to live 7-10 years, and the Mastiff is only slated to live 10-12, so the Irish Mastiff is a good in-between.

Because of its size, the Irish Mastiff is prone to a lot of serious health conditions. Make sure to schedule regular trips to the vet.

Intelligence, Temperament, and Personality Traits of the Irish Mastiff

The Irish Mastiff will grow to become an incredibly mellow, well-behaved dog in its later years. But during adolescence, this dog is known to be distracted, and clumsy.

You will need to participate in physical activity and training in order for it to grow out of this phase. Positive reinforcement is a must.

The Irish Mastiff is incredibly tolerant of children and nice around most people. However, it is important to be careful, because it is large and powerful and can accidentally hurt others.

The Irish Mastiff has a high prey drive, and shouldn’t be kept with other pets. It is good with strangers but can become shy if not properly socialized.

The Irish Mastiff is eager to please and enjoys training.

Irish Mastiff sitting by flowers
The Irish Mastiff is the hybrid of an English Mastiff and an Irish Wolfhound.

The Irish Mastiff’s Diet

Like a big dog, the Irish Mastiff is going to have a big diet. It is estimated that it will eat 4 cups of food a day, on a diet that consists of premium dry dog food for nutrition, fruits, and meats.

This will cost an owner $80-$90 a month.

How Much Exercise Does the Irish Mastiff Need?

The Irish Mastiff only needs a moderate amount of exercise. It is estimated that you should try and reach the targets of 60 minutes of exercise per day, and 8 miles of walking per week.

This is easily obtained via jogs, hikes, and games in the park.

Irish Mastiff Health and Conditions

Serious Issues:

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Bloat
  • Elbow Dysplasia

Minor Issues:

My Final Thoughts on the Irish MastiffIrish Mastiff guide

Overall, the Irish Mastiff is a big, cuddly dog that will suit any family. It is quite easily trained and doesn’t need to much exercise.

Unfortunately, you aren’t getting as many years with this dog as you do other breeds, but it would still prove to be a great part of any family.

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