Bullmastiffs are the result of crosses between the athletic ancestors of the English Mastiff and Bulldog with some input from other breeds hundreds of years ago. They were bred to accompany British Gamekeepers when they patrolled the King’s game reserves to track down poachers. Poaching was punishable by death and anyone found was likely to put up a serious fight to prevent from being caught.  The Bullmastiff protected the Gamekeeper and closed with and held the Poacher until his arrest. More recently breeding was established to improve consistent type and while a protective breed they have mellowed somewhat from their original temperament.


A medium to large breed with substantial build and a strong well-muscled body. They have a large expressive head and a short blunt muzzle tending towards an undershot bite. Their slightly pendulous lips may lead to drooling. They vary in colour from Fawn (Bone to sandy colour) and Red (Light to dark/reddish brown) all with a black muzzle and black orbits around the eyes. Both colours also come in Brindle (stripes that overlay the Fawn or Red coat colour.)

Grooming and Physical Needs

  • Grooming Needs: Short coated and requires little grooming for maintenance.
  • Coat Type: Shorthaired, slightly rough coat.
  • Moulting: Heavy for a short haired dog and if you wish for them to live in your house then weekly brushing is advised.
  • Exercise Needs: They are not a particularly active breed but will enjoy moderate daily exercise, they are equally happy to laze around on a comfortable lounge.
  • Average Life Span: Under 10 years.


  • Family: Families with older children. They are also known to be very tolerant of younger children however with their size they may lean on or sit upon one and harm them without intent.
  • Temperament: They are a dominant protective breed and require a firm owner. They can also be gentle and goofy which belies their formidable appearance. Early socialisation is a must.
  • Trainability: Bullmastiffs can be stubborn at times however they respond to consistent training. Most times they know what you want them to do but want to do it in their own time. Patience is essential when training the Bullmastiff.
  • Sociability (Other Pets): As with most dominant breeds they can be less than tolerant of other animals in the household. It is not recommended to house two fully grown males together. They will happily live alongside cats and other pets should they be socialised and trained from a young age.
  • Barking: Low tendency. The breed is very quiet and if they are barking excitedly something is likely amiss.


Has an innate talent for distinguishing who belongs on the property and who is an intruder.


They are a breed that is devoted to their owner and loves to be so close to you that they often sit on your feet.