Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Mastiffs: we did this


Sure, I've been a bit unfair in this comparison. If you do a trawl for archive pictures of Mastiffs (or English Mastiffs as they are called everywhere other than the UK), you will certainly find history littered with some bulkier, short-faced dogs.  And, while the dog on the right was shown at Crufts this year, he didn't win (although he had certainly been placed previously in order to qualify for the show).  But just look at the harmony and balance in the 1936 dog compared to the awkward lump on the right.

In fairness,  the French dog that won Best of Breed at Crufts 2016 was a more moderate dog:



BUT... he was less than two years old at the time of his win and if you click here you can see what his parents look like. The bulk will come. 

Here's another comparison - this time a Mastiff from 1931 alongside another dog that was shown at Crufts this year.



Shocking, isn't it?

The 1931 dog is a lift from this video from British Pathé, which landed in my Facebook timeline this morning, hence the random Mastiff post on this fine summer's day.




151 comments:

  1. I don't give a hoot what a dog looks like. Well, maybe a small hoot. What concerns me about mastiff breeds is their short lifespans and horrid scores on hip and elbow evaluations and other poor health indicators (tendency to bloat is one I know of). Inconsistent temperament is also a problem for a dog that may weigh as much as its owner.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Um, you should "give a hoot" because the point of the article is that how these dogs have been bred to look directly affects their health and lifespans.

      Delete
    2. mastiffman64801@yahoo.com16 August 2016 at 22:37

      I have noticed that height/weight in Mastiff's are coming down/sizing smaller. Also black masks are getting smaller, as well as seeing a lot of Brown ears, and NOT the Black ears. I love the breed so much I go by mastiffman64801 in Joplin Mo. I also call my place, MASTIFF MANSION. Anyway, I have 3 females. They are 30 inches, 32 inches and 33 inches tall, and go in at 160-200-235. I can't find good breeding stock because Males in my area are only 28-32 inches high and weighing in around 160-180. I keep my eye out for NICE pups, but color is way off.

      Delete
  2. Agreed, the 1936 specimen shows harmony & balance. Yet a standardly correct Mastiff is characterized by a head (in general outline) giving a square appearance, complemented by a broad, deep, long body powerfully built on legs wide apart and set; muscles sharply defined. If people involved would be finally willing to read and follow the whole standard in all honesty, the breed fancy may get rid of those unsound conformation issues and ridiculous excesses of dead weight.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a problem already with your cherished standards. Show me any animal with a "square head" and it will be a dysfunctional freak.

      IC we aren't meant to take the standard literally are we?

      Unfortunately that's exactly how many breeds ended up the dysfunctional freaks they are, people taking standards literally, all concerned. The closer to a freak the closer to the standard the more chances of winning at a dog show.

      What kind of insane misguided and twisted quest is that exactly that strives to turn a dog into a dysfunctional freak?

      Delete
    2. Well speaking about a freak - ‘Not even a hundred thousand pounds could move that dog.’ That’s from you, isn’t it? The same hyperbolic personality interpretes the sentence - ‘a head (in general outline) giving a square appearance’ - into -‘a square head’ - seemingly referring to a geometric cube. If that’s the way you study standards, I can imagine your telling inability to understand them.

      Delete
    3. "Square from every angle".........I guess an exact square rather than "general outline" is never going to happen because this is an animal. However because it's written the constant striving for such has wrecked the head of the Mastiff with each passing generation in the show ring.

      A general type with a very much less than "square head" is the foundation, so lets strive for a block head instead?

      No hyperbol involved. The dog was not for sale!

      Delete
    4. Some people take words literally , ie square as a cube. If you manage to read the whole description of the head it becomes clear that it’s a bit more elaborated. There’s no reason to believe that striving for a head square in appearance has ‘wrecked’ the head of a Mastiff as ancient relics (a/o British Museum) , long before pedigreed dog breeding, indicate the existence of dogs presenting heads quite square in appearance and therefore there’s no argument to believe that a general type - read longish head - should be the foundation of the Mastiff breed.

      Quote –‘I saw a terrific one in a million black Tosa-inu few weeks ago in a back street in Bangkok. On its toes, like a panther it got to me in a flash from 50-meters away giving me the arched stiff treatment, sniffing me up and down. Huge dog, tremendous deep growl, shiny shiny smooth short solid black coat, hard coordinated muscle, dry bone, head like an angel. One sleek power house. I made an instant reflex offer and was laughed at by a bunch of car mechanics for my troubles. Dry mouthed and tight, this was no show dog. None of the tell tale marks of a fighting dog either. I was shouting offers as I dissapeared down the road, the sounds of laughter trailing behind. We sounded like a Christie's auction, not even a hundred thousand pounds could move that dog.’ – And this shouldn’t be hyperbolic? A street dog in a back street of Bangkok considered as a Tosa Inu, no rather a panther. Quite normal the sound of laughter was trailing behind you…

      Delete
    5. Missed that one. Yes Tosas are popular in Thailand it's not unusual to see one or two on your travels. American pit bulls are also very popular so are many breeds from around the world.

      Bangkok street dogs and general street dogs in Thailand can be magnificent too of course yes. They tend towards a pariah type dog with incredibly short plush coats and some very unusual colours like a lilac pointed and Dalmatian spotty, silver. Some bright spark decided to select just the ridged types and create the Thai ridgeback which is honestly just a street dog with a ridge. Up North you do see a lot of these ridged dogs used for hunting often blue in colour. I used to admire them long before they became a "breed" unfortunately quarantine laws came between me and taking a couple home with me. No pedigree of course very much a type, land race exclusively in those days. The pedigree version is a silly thing which moves very much unlike the hunting version which tends to be extremely economical and efficient in movement, the show version is also much taller and a little frail looking. Though I don't know of course how strong the gene pool is there are hundreds of working and feral ones to fix any problems in the show dog. Why one must wonder do people need to do this to a type. It makes no sense at all. Thousands of years a perfectly functional useful dog then.......

      I would and quite sincerely take a back street Thai type of my choosing over any English Mastiff, any day, they are terrifically fit functional and excellent watch dogs.

      Delete
    6. I presume you’ve thought over and over again your canine choice(s), so who am I to challenge them? If you’re convinced – ‘they are terrifically fit functional and excellent watch dogs’- , so let it remain your fine presumption. At first sight I cannot understand the way my Mastiff (& others) are mostly kind to people but clearly ignore some of them; for me it seems as if Mastiffs may have a kind of 6th sense, ie a reciprocal aversion for those who ‘breathe out’ antipathy. So your choice is quite right, a Mastiff would never become your companion on route.

      Delete
  3. btw. Checked Finnish KC stats.
    http://jalostus.kennelliitto.fi/frmTerveystilastot.aspx?R=264&Lang=en

    They list Mastiff, but not English Mastiff, so I presume Mastiff is the relevant listing. Average lifespan is 6 yr 6 mo. Only 34 dogs born between 2011 and 2016 have been hip scored. 44% scored C, 21% scored D, and 3% scored F. As is commonly the case, the unspecified categories dominate the cause of death; cancer and skeletal or articular disease are the most commonly specified causes. Excess bulk probably contributes to bad hips and other skeletal maladies.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wow, the 2016 dog at the very top has absolutely no bend of stifle. His back legs are straight as rods. What judge on earth would look at that and think that's acceptable???

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A judge that breeds mastiffs probably.

      Delete
  5. The Pathé dogs are gorgeous, though I would like to have seen more hard muscle mass. Those dogs should without much effort be able to leap over those little stable doors in one neat pop. I think the dogs shown are already in type some distance from their working ancestors and well on their way to show ruination.

    However when we look at the all too typical 2016 dog (top right) we see a dog that has litraly morphed into a bus without an engine. The angles on that dog are such that function has been 100% compromised. The hinds are dead straight the shoulder and front the same right through the pasterns, dead straight, it's missing a neck and a face and it has absolutely no muscle tone or sufficient muscle mass to carry its frame , slab sided, croup high......

    Judges comment: "feet are surprisingly nice".

    Body mass is not a problem if its hard functional muscle which this isn't. Body shape is also not particularly important unless its extremes affects function and soundness which this does. You don't have to see this dog move to know exactly how it's going to move, and that will be with great difficulty, a sad shuffle. In the canter its back legs might just break like matchsticks. I for one would definitely hold my breath. It's going to be prone to cruciate problems, elbow problems, back problems.... Yes hard functional muscle mass would hold the whole thing together that much longer, it might even get away without cruciate problems but even then it would be far far from ideal for any dog.

    This is the type of dog that as a puppy an owner would be advised not to let it run and jump, be a normal dog. Restrict its exercise and manner of exercise and starve it. Unfortunately none of this will help it as an adult, if this dog did what a normal dog does it would still break down. One couldn't blame the kibble, not this time. It would need life long crate rest, born a cripple.

    In contrast the French bred best of breed is certainly a lot better, here is a more moderate example but one that is also completely useless. It still lacks or needs the athleticism and hard muscle to carry that frame. The pasterns are weak and the hinds straight, its not going to be very much better, soft. If it was a bitch I would say it might just be OK but not something I would breed with unless breeding away, outcross (to another type) and as a last resort perhaps.

    All the effort and you are left with a completely dysfunctional mastiff that breaks down before it dies at six. Not even taking head shape into account it's a none starter.

    I have to admit those lively happy Pathé brindles got my heart racing for a few seconds there, though.

    Sometimes I wish this blog was about all the wonderfully good dogs out there.

    I saw a terrific one in a million black Tosa-inu few weeks ago in a back street in Bangkok. On its toes, like a panther it got to me in a flash from 50-meters away giving me the arched stiff treatment, sniffing me up and down. Huge dog, tremendous deep growl, shiny shiny smooth short solid black coat, hard coordinated muscle, dry bone, head like an angel. One sleek power house. I made an instant reflex offer and was laughed at by a bunch of car mechanics for my troubles. Dry mouthed and tight, this was no show dog. None of the tell tale marks of a fighting dog either. I was shouting offers as I dissapeared down the road, the sounds of laughter trailing behind. We sounded like a Christie's auction, not even a hundred thousand pounds could move that dog.




    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm at the stage now where my true idea of beauty in a dog is seen through the lens of what I think minimises health issues. Beauty to me is: no wrinkles; a decent muzzle (flat faces alarm me);good conformation; I don't like them over sized-we do not need it and they don't need it and too much bulk is unnecessary too. I'm forever looking at old videos of dogs, and can see them quite able to perform, without looking as many of them do these days. I now see more beaty in Belgian shepherds than GSDs, simply because of what's been done to their backs. Bring me a straight backed GSD, and I'll admire such a dog readily though.

    ReplyDelete
  7. excuse the typos. Hope I made the point clearly.

    ReplyDelete
  8. There are still breeders who breed for health and soundness. I have a Mastiff from parents who can clear a 6ft fence and walk/run for miles.

    ReplyDelete
  9. My dogs parents had great hip scores and clear eye tests too. I'm amazed many breeders don't health test.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Health testing is good (and should be done), but I see it being used as a crutch in place of proper selection of mates which maximize genetic diversity.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. PipedreamFarm,

      Absolutely!!

      Delete
  11. Wow! You’ve got some lovely old moderate Mastiffs there and some fairly typical extremely overdone modern Mastiffs. Anyone with any dog sense and certainly anyone with any knowledge of working dogs would say that the 2016 specimen is simply pitiful. I shared this post on my Facebook page to help breed enthusiasts learn the difference between moderate and overdone. Anyone who cares for their breed or just for dogs in general should help others understand things like this that can have such a great impact on a dog's quality of life. Thanks for blogging this Jemima!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I shared the post and got the expected reaction of people saying their Mastiff can run for miles and miles a day, thought mountains etc. The owner of the parents of the Cruft winner posted the parents and the other Mastiff he owns are perfectly fit 'for a Mastiff'. I hate that line 'for a Mastiff' as if it is a specie instead of a breed. But besides that; the males he mentioned (one is the father of the Cruft Winner) are not extremely fit. One of them, the father over the winner had two cysts, is partially paralyzed and just ended 4 weeks of antibiotics. I received another message from the owner of a half sister of the winner who is doing great. Great to hear because his 100% brother Jonah died at the age of 2 :(. I was asked if our Mastiffs are extremely fit and answered; 'I thought they where but since we lost one before the age of 5 years, I doubt if I am the person to judge'. I feel sorry for the people who think their Mastiff are fit for function and do not see what is happening with the breed. Thank you Jennifer fot sharing the link to the Finish database.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Since the owner thinks I insulted him or are trying to say he has poor bred Mastiffs I will post here what I told him. Hi Richard, I was really not trying or willing to insult you. I feel for you since I know what it is to have dogs that are not healthy or died too soon. We are having trouble right here with our dogs and lost one our selves much too soon. I hope and wish we (your family and mine) will have a better years to come with our friendly dogs! I just shared the pedigrees exposed post on facebook with the remark that the Dutch Kennelclub has changed their rules so extremely overdone Mastiffs are not appreciated in the shows in Holland. I didn't even know it where your dogs until you mentioned owning both parents and told us they and Folomi are extremely fit. Since that was not the information you shared publicly on facebook, I responded and copied it. It is public information. And I still believe it is the right thing to be open and honest about it. I would correct the comment I made on the blog if there is any information there that is not correct. But I never stated that your Jonah died because of bad breeding or stated that Envico is a poor example of a Mastiff. I just shared the facts in reaction to your statement that they are extremely fit. As a matter a fact I loved Jonah's looks and his brother the way he looks right now and think he and Jonah are far better dog than the apricot dog on the right of the post where I was referring too. I will copy this in the blog and hopes this clear up what I meant to say.

      Delete
  13. How the women above can comment on anything is beyond me,
    this coming from a woman who crossbreeds mastiffs with greyhounds.
    you should be ashamed of yourself

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I believe Jen Willshire has crossed health-tested Mastiffs to health-tested greyhounds in an effort to create heather, more functional Mastiffs? Of course it may not succeed - although I think the first generation looks pretty good and my guess is that the second generation (crossed back to Mastiffs) will look very like the dog on the left at the top.

      I understand not everyone will agree with the idea, but do you not think that the 1936 and 1931 dogs look better than many of the current-day dogs?

      Delete
    2. I completely agree with Jemina - why should Jen be ashamed?? It is about time we get back to the healthy Mastiffs and this includes drastic measures! She is actually doing something about it - thumbs up!

      Delete
    3. Hi miss anonymous,
      'The woman' just shared the comments that where posted on her FB by the owners of the dogs, in reply of Jemima's blogs. Since you know me, you can read it yourself. The post about the sick Mastiffs I referred too are also in any Mastiff group. I honestly feel sorry for the owner since I know what it is to lose a Mastiff way to soon. And maybe you should get your facts straight. We didn't crossbreed any dog, but are happy a crossbred Mastiff*Greyhound is living with us. What a joy he is!
      It's a dog who teaches us a lot about the Mastiff, Mastiffs health and dogs in general, which is far more interesting than looks and breeding standards as far as I am concerned. So far he is doing great, and 'dogpeople', professionals and vets drool over him, even Greyhound owners. I hope he will give longevity to more than one breed! It's just the Mastiff people who seem to think he is a Mastiff, which he is not, that have a problem with him. And it's funny because not anyone that gave negative comments has ever seen a dog of Jen Willshire's crossbred litter. You are welcome to meet him and our Mastiff girls any time!

      Delete
    4. I know midgard mastiffs create crossbred mastiffs with high defense drives and lovely looking dogs and his fastest dog can apparently run 35mph. They were not crossed with greyhounds though, but they are amazing looking dogs.
      I think cross breeding can potentially create much better dogs for their purpose if you really take a lot of care an effort

      Delete
    5. You don't to mix in another breed to have a healthy athletic dog. You breed for it. And continue to health tested. All my dogs are health tested, they are not these over done, over weight dogs you are seeing. We do quite well showing. I do not agree with the cross breeding.

      Delete
    6. Unknown person,

      Crossbreeding can be of huge benefit to creating a dog for a specific purpose as it can combine the positive traits of multiple breeds.

      The example I mentioned above of Midgard mastiffs breed, fast, powerful dogs that make very capable personal protection dogs and hunters of powerful game such as boar.

      You could try to work with what you have got rather than crossbreed, but the problem is that if in the breed very few people are indeed breeding for these traits, you will struggle to make progress, especially when the showring is breeding against that.

      Plus, pedigree does not matter other than for showing, I hate to say. There is no reason to try to limit yourself to the dogs in a genepool if you wish to create a good working dog.

      Delete
    7. I agree healthtesting is very important. All our dogs are hip/elbow/eye/and have a My Dog DNA passport. I also believe healthtesting leads to excluding dogs, which means a smaller genepool, which means new disorders, which means unhealthy breeds. We don't show our dogs because to us it's only looks, but of course we our proud when one of our puppies wins a show.

      Delete
    8. I believe Midgard did a lot of research before crossbreeding. I think his goal is somewhat different since he is not crossing back to the Mastiff. It looks like they are in good shape!

      Delete
    9. I good for her. No reason I can see that cross wouldn't produce some lovely functional dogs. Even If they don't look anything like Mastiffs today.
      Thats a good thing.

      Delete
    10. I think I prefer greyhound to what Midgard uses. No one needs fight responses in a dog. Ironically perhaps in this context but we aren't living in sixteenth century England for only one example where dog fighting was the sport of Kings and Queens.

      Fighting dogs in this day and age dont make good family and property guardians or even personal protection dogs for obvious reasons.

      Great Danes, Neos heavens knows what else but there are some very sad genetics in there.

      Having said that you could even use Africanis and you would be well on your way to the beginning of health in the "English Mastiff" though I would think you would need a lot lot more tweaking with various other breeds as what's left in the English Mastiff to work with is pretty limited.

      Delete
    11. Fighting dogs and protection dogs are different entirely.

      Watch this video first, then decide.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioS-ixUxhbs

      Theres a dog for everyone, which is what makes breeds so brilliant. If someone wants a dog which will protect them when needed, but is stable when there is no threat, and is willing to train and socialise their dog, then I think that there is no problem with that as long as they are safe, then its their choice.

      Delete
    12. I guess just arrive without a sleeve guard and you should be fine. He was attacking the thing even when it was lying on the floor. Shouldn't think to many people have trouble with marauding sleeves.

      Seriously it does look like a functional Great Dane, though. Nothing to sniff at considering the state of Great Danes. Where to from this single dog though to avoid the pitfalls of all breeds concerned...should be interesting. More of the same can only lead to trouble.

      Training and socialising unfortunately is not going to help with fight reflex, its hardwired, you can only try and breed it out.

      http://www.border-wars.com/2015/03/its-all-in-how-you-train-them-not-really.html

      Ideally high working drive without dog aggression is what you need. This is usualy to be found but not exclusively in the Shepherd breeds like Malinois......



      Delete
    13. Usually for sports like IPO, there are two drives at work, prey drive and defense drive, and the dogs nerves play a big part.
      Even an IPO 3 trained dog you cannot assume they will protect you, use its own head, to judge the threat accordingly.
      A dog that does well in bitework does not mean a dog which does well out in the field.

      That dog is probably using defense drives, and I would not doubt that he would bite without the sleeve there.
      Malinois and GSD also have defense drives, but also a ton of prey drive. There are some dogs that make it to the top levels of IPO purely on prey drive, but can break down when pressure is applied to their weakness.

      With correct training, the owners should have complete control of the dog
      Since we are talking about midgard mastiffs here, they talk about this lower down on their F&Q page.
      https://midgardkennels.wordpress.com/frequently-asked-questions/

      There is a difference between a fight drive and pure aggression. A dog can be balanced, yet will still respond to a threat.

      This video here shows a finish Character test which sort of attempts to test this:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DnpHPqV2p3c

      Either way, there is a more to PPD training than just the perceived "aggression".

      Delete
    14. If you wish to understand more about Protection dogs and training, I would first offer http://www.workingdogforum.com/

      Many of the members there have a lot of experience and could offer their insight to the topic

      Delete
    15. Yah Im almost certain I read on Midgaurd site where he says the dog has fight drive.

      In a very large mastiff breed that's going to be used for homestead protection it's just not something I consider much of an asset but rather something of a dangerous liability that needs constant management. Saying prey drive is also not very useful is of course also a gross understatement, but it needs to be said . Good in a boehound though.

      This is yes different to drive, work drive, protection drive.

      Homestead guardian dogs, types do need to intuit danger, this is their job. They need to be athletic yes but in a mastiff that's not a restless energy that you might get in Shepherd breed. Dogs that do police work/schutzhund work are not very much different except they are handled and respond to command rather than doing much intuiting.

      I think for a good large mastiff homestead guardian breed or type there are still a few functional options. Here again you need to do your homework and avoid dog aggression which still manages often to find its way in. Prey drive is not much of an issue in some of these types like the Boerboel for example luckily but that doesn't mean they don't have some lines of them at least plenty of drive. You can have drive without dog aggression and prey drive, but these you will definately find in a good game English pitbul.

      It's how take that raw hardwired drive and functionality and robust almost primitve health and functionality of a game pitbull without the baggage, that's quite problematic.

      Thanks for the link.

      Delete
    16. You may consider it a liability, and tbh, I do to, but everyone has their own fears and wishes, and that is something people wish for.
      Socialisation is important because it prevents fear aggression. Not prey or defense drive, but uncontrolled aggression which is the largest liability first.
      There are also some Mals and GSDs which are difficult to manage in every day life, and can be very difficult to own because of their breeding, just like any mastiff would have its difficulties.
      Take this Malinois for example:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsuCJXuEoKc
      I do not know much about this dog, but from the information given from the owner, this dog likely is reactive due to its breeding and prey drive, rather than aggression, and also doesn't show signs of fear either.
      The above I would consider a liability as much as a fearful dog.
      If a dog is balanced and unreactive in public, and to everyone it meets, then that is a good sign. Mals and GSDs aren't without any aggression, that is for sure, and aggression is just such a loose term.
      The typical fear aggression is a huge problem with them if unsocialised or with very weak nerves, they have one of the largest prey drives out of any breed, and they certainly are bred with good amounts of defense drive too.

      I think personally, no, I do not wish all mastiffs were bred like Midgards, I was using them as an example really of a large, robust dog with good instincts and huge athleticism. There are working mastiff breeders (often neos etc.) that also breed dogs with good shape and good instincts that have much more "pure" blood as well.
      Modern english mastiffs do not have the same athleticism, and while they do not need it necessarily, its always best to have a dog which is structurally capable of anything it wishes.
      That doesn't mean a dog needs to be made higher energy, (as the greyhound is an example of a very fast dog that is a very calm lapdog, but it does like a daily run), but I personally think less weight held in an athletic shape is best for all dogs and their joints, and they can still be a mastiff by the end of it.

      But, if someone wanted to breed a working dog, or a dog with some athleticism, they would not choose an english mastiff to work off in most cases. Most breeders breed with a consideration to type, so you wont be changing what breeders breed for, and things will likely stay the same.

      Delete
    17. Anyone who willingly wishes for dog aggression in a working dog is badly misguided in my opinion. This might work on the Steppes of the Caucuses where the odd wolf might be a real problem but it's not an asset in most of the world. The same with specific prey drive, for a hunting dog yes, but for a homestead protection dog no.

      I think most people who love and admire mastiff types and breeds outside of the show ring do want functionality, athleticism and drive. Without these things it's a lump of nothing.

      The more I think about it the more interesting greyhound sounds as an outcross, good solid hard massive muscling though might be more of a challenge.

      The English Mastiff doesn't have a job anymore but why should it be as dead as a floor rug, that's not much fun for anyone is it. Why should it only live to six, why should it have to live with painful conditions, hips elbows........what's the point in it at all when the breed has given up the ghost?

      Delete
    18. Dog aggression? Huh? They're not fighting dogs.

      like I said, there are PPDs for a reason, and thats what people like, and a well trained one should be perfectly safe in every day life, whether someone breeds a mastiff-type or a Malinois.
      My point was never trying to say all mastiffs should have high prey and defense drive. My point was that their dogs are athletic, fast and powerful.

      But yes, I agree, every dog should have the ability to run and play, to chase, to jump, to swim, etc.
      The dog doesn't need to be a hyper, insane workaholic to enjoy these activities, but people should at least be breeding a dog which is capable of enjoying them!

      Chasing ribbons can't provide this for a breed when everyone already has the preconceptions of what they should look like.
      Is a championship really more important than a happy, healthy dog? Though I guess they think their dogs are as happy and healthy as any other and can breed for looks.

      I would think a good crossbreeding program can really make a very healthy breed. Perhaps add dogs mixed with breeds such as greyhounds, ridgebacks, Kangals, boerboel and other mastiff breeds, etc, and work from their to get the ideal structure and temperament.

      Greyhounds and Ridgebacks have high prey drive, while the mastiff requires a low prey drive, the Kangal is very reserved with strangers usually, etc, so it would need to be maintained to keep the qualities people like in the breed, and to do that would need a serious breeding program to take place, and whether people like it or not, it would have to involve outcrossing for diversities sake, which would make the breed healthier too.
      But yeah, it is not going to happen.

      Delete
  14. I love the big dogs. But I cannot bring myself to own most of them. The damage that has been done to most of the breeds is horrifying. And I'm watching it happen with the Tibetan Mastiff. And its horrifying to watch the process......

    ReplyDelete
  15. I can't believe what I see posted. Most of the mastiff bred and shown by reputable breeders are of correct structure and type. Mastiffs live 8 to 10 years average. Many living longer. I don't know where the person with hip scores got their info. Go check out offs. Most are testing good to excellent. Just because one dog at the show was not quality doesn't mean the mastiff breed is in trouble. To the lady who breeds designer mastiffs because she couldn't breed or sell good quality you are an idiot. I don't hide my name. I have posted it before. Today's mastiffs have better conformation, health and longevity than ever before.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Really?

      Well, they say if you put a frog in boiling water, it will jump straight out, but if you put it in cold water and gradually turn up the heat, they will stay in the water until they die.

      Seems like this is true for breeding for show too.

      Delete
    2. Also, you can easily see the BOB in 2014, 2015, and 2016 on youtube at after 20:00
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bLZRWVeZa5w
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lB7E1Mulyrg
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PvUmoS4_HE

      and then say they are as athletic and powerful as the mastiffs of old.
      Because really, if you do, you might want to get your glasses/eyesight checked.

      Delete
  16. On what basis are you saying that Mastiffs lie 8-10 years on average? The only peer-reviewed longevity data I can find has the average age of death for UK Mastiffs at 6.83 years. Perhaps there have been other surveys which tell a different story?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will respond on the basis of breeding Mastiffs for 15 years in the U.S. My dogs ALL live to be 10-12 years old. During their lifetime they all were healthy. No, they did not run for miles but it's because I live in the South and it's too hot to make them run or stay out in the heat very long. They passed their hips, elbows. patellas, heart, PRA, thyroid, von wildebrand testing. My dogs ranged in size from 180-215 pounds. They were/are ALL gentle giants, have done therapy work, one was trained for search and rescue, love children and I NEVER saw any aggression in any of them and I have been owned by many, many Mastiffs. The difference is between backyard breeders/puppy mills versus reputable breeders. The Mastiff Breeders I know in the U.S. have monetarily assisted in studies to eliminate diseases that were prevalent in the breed. I take offense to this blog.

      Delete
    2. The last reply was from Suzie Fleming, not Bruce.

      Delete
  17. Quote – ‘I understand not everyone will agree with the idea, but do you not think that the 1936 and 1931 dogs look better than many of the current-day dogs?’ – Are you presuming that those 1936/1931 dogs should be held as ideal templates for the Mastiff breed because people outside the ‘standard breed’ may think they ‘look better’? Both examples are nice dogs but standard-wise very poor specimens of the Mastiff breed even in their days. People please, once again, do read the breed standard before judging some few photographs and omnisciently blackguarding the present state of the breed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. wynants,

      re; the Standard... Isn't that the problem then? The Standard? A proclamation of what we must accept, Because thats how it is ?
      No matter what else we might want. Ignoring any environmental considerations that are the usual drivers of development and evolution.
      And after all, WE ARE the environment for dogs.

      Why does a tiny part of the environment get to dictate what the rest must accept, even if it doesn't serve our purposes, fill our needs or meet our expectations?

      So we lower our expectations and forget a purpose and any values that bring them.
      Because a standard is stagnation. It brings nothing. No value. It just is. A condition of its environment.

      A standard fixes a time, in place.
      Values expand a place, in time.

      You want standards thats O.k but don't try to force them on ALL places, because they can never match the K.Cs standards any way. They're exclusive bodies.
      Keep your standards, but let the rest of us keep our values or there will be nothing left to of dogs to support.

      The K.cs were founded on values, not standards. They aren't the same thing. But with out values, theres nothing to support your standards and they will collapse. They ARE collapsing.
      Because the K.C membership insists we ALL accept standards in place of values.

      Delete
    2. So what you're saying is.... even though photographs back then were very expensive and most people didn't have access to them (only those rich enough)... people took photos of dogs that were NOT good examples of the breed standard... and no one took ANY photos of dogs that WERE good examples of the breed standard...

      Yes... because that makes PERFECT sense... >_>

      Delete
    3. Whenever there is photo evidence of a radical change in breed type, this is the excuse used by those who think current show-ring fashion is the true arbiter of 'correct type'.

      The concept that gradual change in fashion / perception over time leading to a twisting of what the dogs originally were is unfathomable to their limited perspectives.

      Delete
  18. "A Damaged Breed

    Why did 19th century breeders inflict so much damage on the breed of Mastiff? Why did 20th century breeders continue this regrettable trend? Why are 21st century breeders condoning this and even perpetuating such harm to their breed? Mastiff breeders of today need to ask themselves these questions if the breed they favour is going to survive contemporary welfare and financial pressures. Breed club officials in this very special breed must also be willing to debate whether the breed clubs themselves have, over the years, done as much damage to this famous breed as did the inexplicable use of the seriously-flawed sire Crown Prince in the 19th century. His wholly unsound, totally untypical imprint still lies on the breed. Do today's breeders want a fawn St Bernard (the Alpine Mastiff type, once favoured at Chatsworth) or the descendent of a renowned hunting dog, famed throughout Western Europe four centuries ago for its use as a hound." David Hancock.
    'nuff said.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Well said Wynants. Two bad picture examples against the breed standard as the author has portrayed, to shock, does nothing for the cause of bettering the breed IMO. After the Pedigrees Exposed BBC documentary there has been more awareness of soundness and health issues, changes in our breed standard and with breeders. This is the positive. This is what the author should focus on IMO. However we have those like Jennifer Wilshire and other crossbreeders who are using this kind of article to support crossbreeding of mastiffs, some showing pics of the 'Mastiff weapons' they are creating, doing attack training, which is a real working dog apparently. These extremists with too thin dogs, in order to show muscle definition, showing roach backs from malnutrition, but is what they think fit for function looks like, are putting this breed at risk of being banned as a dangerous breed and using your article to support them. Jemima Harrison if you really care about the dogs, why don't you do a proper follow up on the positive impact of Pedigrees Exposed and the changes that are being made by those who consider themselves guardians of the breed
    My name is Karen Dyer, but don't know how to get that in the comment as box, so had to put anonymous in

    ReplyDelete
  20. you say that the dog you picture must of won somewhere to have qualified, well as there are so few of these breed now shown it is very very easy to qualify for Crufts and only needed to just entered a show and it was as good chance it would get a 3rd in the class to qualify as the breed is only about 50 and as the average classification for show is Puppy, Junior Post Grad Limit and Open for each sex there are 60 qualifying "Chances" at ever show, so your premise that you based this article on is a flawed one.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Il cane del 1936 mi sembra un cucciolone e comunque molto giovane ...quindi il paragone è impari ...

    ReplyDelete
  22. May I ask you after your involvement into the Mastiff breed beecause you have doubt that this breed standard doesn't serve OUR purposes, fill OUR needs or meet OUR expectations?
    And trust me, you don’t need to lower your expectations as till present-day no one has succeeded to breed a Mastiff who fulfilled the complete standard. . Breeding towards this standard is therefore an never ending endeavour.The purpose is quite clear, the breeding of a large reliable guard and companion having adequate conformation & good health; innate basic aggressiveness is a no go as it’s contradictory to its common good nature of gentle giant. Breed values are imbedded within the standard (do read it), and no problem if you may have other values in life. And yes there will be nothing left if people like you should manage the Mastiff breed because your Hare Krishna-like “A standard fixes a time, in place.Values expand a place, in time” is clear and simple clueless, head in the clouds. To end there’s nothing to support your post incl your apparent wet dream, ie the collapse of standards. Go back to your lovely standard-free mongrels and please do care for them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you for real??

      This is like something out of a sit com. Seriously, there is comedy gold in these posts and thinking we could write like 'The Office' but call it 'The Kennel Club' or 'The Dog Breed Club'. We will credit you for your stupid comments.

      Delete
    2. @Anon

      haha, its the mentality of "This breed is mine, I can do what I want with it, I don't care what other people think"
      Almost selfish I reckon to breed dogs for an appearance that doesn't work well for the dogs health.

      But I guess its their breed, they don't need to care about what makes the best built dog, but what makes the Best of Breed.

      A moderate dog with an open pedigree/outcrossing programs is undeniably healthier and better structured. Less wrinkles to harbour bacteria and obscure vision, less weight so less pressure is on the joints and ease of movement, a structure which allows the dog the simple right to move as freely as they would want.

      Guess we should not be commenting, because its "their" breed, and damn anyone who shares some insight which they don't like!
      But I bet when outcrossing programs become necessary to the breeds survival (as it will be at one point), they will still oppose new blood, and it could either die out, or someone who can see past the ribbons will work to keep the breed alive.

      My expectations are very low, as the breeders are not going towards a more balanced less extreme dog, but away from it.

      Delete
    3. Re 10:24

      Is that all you have to say? No content, so no reply.

      Re 12:57

      The breed belongs to the breed fancy which cannot use pedantic outsiders like you who seem to think they can tar all Mastiff breeders with the same brush. An obvious sign you’ve no clue regarding present Mastiff breeding world-wide. So if you, as seasoned PDE acolyte, are only there to criticize the breed w/out any tangible INVOLVEMENT thereto, go for your pale ones and I hope they will satisfy you.

      Delete
    4. So, magic Mastiff whisperer, tell me your secrets to how the Mastiff is in fact not a dog, and instead a separate species all together?
      Because I do not own a mastiff, I aint allowed to comment?

      Soo, if you saw a dog bred that is designed to always have a broken back by the age of 2 due to breed standards or something (its a non existent scenario), you would sit back and say "I know nothing about breed x, so I won't comment to how these dogs can be healthier"
      Im sorry, what breeder in the breed ring could bring a nice, well structured mastiff with the athleticism and lack of wrinkles of the one in the image at the top of the page and win in the UK?
      Even if the dog at the top of the page has incorrect angluation and the like, it has better structure for health.
      Where would a dog with that kind of structure win?

      And, I wasn't talking about other breeders, I was talking about YOU and YOUR attitude.

      Delete
    5. Also, I don't want a mastiff, so I am not getting one, simple as.
      I am allowed to comment on what I think would be healthiest for the breed, even if those inside it want to ignore everything I say with the excuse that I do not own one, so I cannot say anything about it.

      I can only hope that those which do breed purely for health and good structure can do more for the breed than those which don't can take away from it.
      But then again, I don't own the breed, so why should I even care what happens to it lol

      I don't care, people can be as blind as they want.

      Meanwhile, here is a video of a dog taking part in the agility world championships at 13 years old, the age where most mastiffs are already dead.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=675ZQTxjAkE

      Or this dog whom is 11 years old that WON the agility world championships.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nj7HYAF5wIw

      I guess I shouldn't comment that bulldogs live on average 6 years, and Mastiffs on average 7 (or 8-10 as some say), and that they could be living longer?

      Delete
    6. Sorry anon 25 July 2016 at 20:20, but due to all those anons I overlooked your reply. No problem if you comment the Mastiff breed. Now if you think that the 1936 one is a well-structured athletic Mastiff, then let it be that way as I’m not your helping hand here. Presuming that the 1936 one has better structure for health might be true compared to the 2016 one but, on the sly, claiming that it’s thé Mastiff structure to strive after is a bridge too far. Re athleticism, do study the second thigh of your 1936. Is that what you want, ie want of drive? Re structure, do notice the almost upright shoulder positioning. Is this typical for a dog able to reach out reach adequately? Do also notice the difference in angulation between fore- & hind quarters. Is this the structure well off for a coordinated gait? Or shall the dog move with high pasterns (energy comsuming front stepping) in order to compensate in time the long reach of the definitely more angulated backhand? The dog is proportionately short in body, therefore lacking space to develop ground covering strides; You see, it’s not that simple as you may have thought. Re – ‘I wasn't talking talking about other breeders’ - , may I remind you that you wrote – ‘as the breeders are not going towards a more balanced less extreme dog, but away from it’ – which, of course, is clearly ‘tarring with the same brush’. Not so fair, isn’t it? But seemingly ‘bon ton’ within PDE circles.

      Delete
    7. @ wynants
      So you reckon, put them into a race and see how they run?

      Do you think looking at the total lack of any angulation in the rear around the hocks of some of the 2016 dogs that is what you want to see in a dog?

      You see the extra lbs/kgs in the 2016 dog, is that what you want in a dog? When the dog lands, its extra weight which is not needed on the joints of a dog, and is restricting the capabilities of the dogs movement.

      You see the proportionally shorter legs in relation to body depth?

      Fair enough saying the dog of the past did not have the total correct angulation and balance throughout its body.

      But tell me, you honestly see a shoulder which is mildly too upright, and the difference in angulation between the rear and front of the dog as having more of an effect than the simple lack of any form of athletic structure?

      You think the dog of the past would be breaking down because of some slightly less efficient angles in the bone?
      Quite simply, the upper arm structure will not play such a huge part as you seem to think.
      The lack of any rear angulation in some of the 2016 dogs is far worse for the structure of the dog than a slightly too upright shoulder.
      The shoulder will affect the pretty showring trot and make it so the dog will not be as good as those with more angulation.
      I know a decent amount to do with structure, and you are blowing the "severity" of the less than ideal angulation out of proportion.

      That may be what you focus on in the showring, but you have to look at the whole dog.
      Reading books, I'd suggest "What's your angle", and while I haven't come even close to learning half of what I should know about structure from all books, I know enough to understand as much as I need to know what you mean.

      The dog above may have less reach overall, and to be honest, that will effect the dog, but not as much as the overall structure of the modern dog.

      If the dog of the past had near perfect angulation, would that be your idea of a near perfect mastiff?

      How much does incorrect angulation matter to a dog? What is the true faults with incorrect structure on the level of the bone, when the overall dog is not built soundly?

      Yes, the first dog does have a straighter shoulder than what would be preferred, but I would not think of it as essential when the rest of the dogs obvious balance is much better.

      If you think the modern dog can jump heigher, have more endurance, move faster, turn quicker, and overall have less pressure on their joints than the dog of the past... I do not know what to say.

      Working dogs are always bred for what works best, and form will follow function in the end.

      Also, it could help a little if in future replies you could possibly add some paragraphs as it is a little difficult to read your reply, thanks.

      Delete
    8. Hi, I hate to repeat myself, so for once wynants19 July 2016 at 19:22 -
      ‘If people involved would be finally willing to read and follow the whole standard in all honesty, the breed fancy may get rid of those unsound conformation issues and ridiculous excesses of dead weight.’ – That will make clear my stance, isn’t it?

      The proportionally shorter legs in relation to body depth is quite obvious in a breed known for its long broad deep body, the 1936 one has a square length/height proportion which is typical for p ex a Great Dane but not for a standardly correct Mastiff.

      The difference in angulation between the rear and front of the dog has indeed an effect upon the gait as it makes impossible to produce the typical breed standard motion. The dog of the past would not break down but is incapable to show up the impressive trot of a genuine Mastiff. Yes, it will not play such a huge part if you’re satisfied with a atypical movement, so I aint blowing the "severity" of the less than ideal angulation out of proportion but only mention the breed-wise consequences of such a structure. And yes, as I’ve already stated re the standard, it all goes about the whole dog , adequately balanced in all its parts.


      Quote’ -The dog above may have less reach overall, and to be honest, that will effect the dog, but not as much as the overall structure of the modern dog.’ – that’s like stamping an open door. Quote – ‘If the dog of the past had near perfect angulation, would that be your idea of a near perfect mastiff?’ – Speaking breed-wise and even taking aside resp angulations, the 1936 is/was what it is/was, a very poorly balanced specimen. A dog is not built soundly if it has incorrect angulation as it’s incapable to move biomechanically in a way as easy as possible. Soundness is more than only a slim narrow posture. And pardon me, the rest of the 1936 dog’ balance is not OK, a/o his length/height proportion is atypical for a standard Mastiff.

      I think the modern dog, the Crufts 2016 BOB winner (see p 3rd pic), can jump heigh, has endurance, can move fast & turn quickly, but of course, not in the degrees of a Greyhound. The pressure on their joints is indeed a risk, therefore a Mastiff needs to be held in good trim, so not overfed but regularly exercised.

      Delete
    9. @wynants
      And this mentality is why the show world is messed up.
      Keep trying to convince yourself.
      Who knows, perhaps if you ever meet a working/athletic mastiff, you will have the chance to see for yourself which is perhaps more structurally capable and have this settled for a good piece of mind. Who knows, perhaps after all that you are right, I certainly don't have a mastiff like that with me right now.

      I have a less than ideally structured working lab, but let me tell you, in endurance, speed, tight turns, heat regulation, and jumping ability he can completely wipe the floor with a show line labrador. I have not met a show lab that can keep up with him yet, and yes, my lab is purebred.
      My dog doesn't have a short back though, I'll give him that.
      Now, that is the best I can give with the closest relation to the modern mastiff and the mastiff of the past.

      Have you ever even worked a dog properly? Fair enough to mention the THEORY behind what you think and see, but does it even have any real basis for it?
      A way to determine the actual effects in a controlled environment? To measure how certain angles affect the dog and to what degree in a more accurate way than "dogs with straighter shoulders can't reach as far", but the quantifiable effects on endurance, speed, etc?

      I am actually sure that there is probably a good simulator for something like that, I would love to play with one.

      Also, to what degree have you even studied locomotion and how it works? A university course perhaps? A seminar?
      Just curious to where the information comes from. I certainly have not properly studied locomotion.

      Yep, shorter backs, incorrect chest, etc etc.
      The biggest mystery is why they "fixed" one set of problems, and created a ton more, despite striving for a better show dog, it looks to me that instead of improving the breed, its just been messed up in a different way.

      I can't see the benefits for shorter legs and a stockier body for ease of movement. Perhaps there are, I can't see it.
      The lack of any rear angulation would not be able to build much power in the back legs, and I also cannot see what benefits it would have in a realistic scenario for the dog.

      The impressive trot is simply that, it looks impressive. I don't see a single animal that has to have the correct structure for survival have such a build in the back legs as the modern mastiff.
      Even the wolf which can travel up to 30 miles a day searching for food in a trot (and can live in captivity up to around 17 years might I add, and is a similar height to the mastiff and can reach 80kg)

      Next people will be saying the flying trot is the best type of trot for endurance lol.

      If you honestly got the two dogs and compared them in all categories, walk, trot, gallop, canter, endurance, speed, turns, jumping ability, acceleration, swimming, etc.
      Would you say the dog pictured with the incorrect balance, proportions, etc. would be worse in the majority of categories than the modern mastiff 3rd one down 2016's parents?

      Delete
  23. Well said Wynants

    ReplyDelete
  24. Pretty sure Wynants that you will find its fact supported by physics and what you have in The K.Cs exclusivity is an organizational identity with its environment contained in its 'self'.
    Because of its exclusivity, not because of the standards.

    Why else are we reduced to coming up with ever more 'Standards' for breeders in an attempt to bring in common values? Like health.
    But I guess elite breeders have no more use for evolutionary biology or physics to support their standards, than they have of an environment outside their own organization.

    ReplyDelete
  25. QUOTE
    "The Mastiff is remarkable
    for the combination of his general development.
    The conformation of the head
    bespeaks an unusual brain power,
    which is under admirable control.

    He is a creature of strong and sincere attachment to man,
    endowed with a wonderful power of discrimination
    and true nobility of character,
    all of which he freely exercises
    in the interests of those for whom alone he seems to live.

    He is by nature docile and gentle to a fault.
    He lays aside his giant strength
    to unite in the gambols of the child
    with the same spirit of tenderness and grace.

    The well-bred Mastiff allies himself to man as his friend,
    to whom he becomes the closest companion,
    and serves him with the truest devotion and sincerity."

    from The Dog by "Stonehenge" - George Armatage 1896

    Some insight for you all into the function and temperament of the mastiff....written in 1896!!!

    and yet there are those that would rather the Mastiff chase rabbits? Run for miles, or other working dog 'values' of the clueless. Although I can hardly expect such 'gross' people with 'gross' 'values' who continuously try and pull the Mastiff down to their own level of functioning, to understand the uniqueness of this breed can I? These are the qualities that have been preserved in our breed, that I still experience in my Mastiffs 120 yrs later!....that you would commodify and bastardise with your crossbreeding and mantras of 'fit for function'? You completely miss the true value of the Mastiff to human beings. Karen Dyer

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Er, it's a dog love.

      Get over yourself.

      Any dog should not be manipulated and deformed to meet the subjective 'standard' of a few narrow minded, poorly educated, 19th century and cognitively dissonant human beings who are clearly not very self aware about the harm they are continually inflicting on the canine species and are so blind to breedism it is canine the equivalence of racism.

      Do you know ANYTHING about evolutionary biology and population genetics? Or are you just so stupidly brain washed that you can't and won't take any objective and empirical criticism?

      Delete
    2. Your post proofs that you don’t know anything about the people who drafted the Mastiff standard and, based upon the lousy content of your post, were intellectually certainly superior to you who’s only hiding behind fancy words aka ‘evolutionary biology and population genetics’ in order to serve the ultimate goal of likeminded, ie the end of pedigreed dog breeds

      Delete
    3. Lol, everything u mentioned above anon were mental traits.

      Nothing to do with why the currant structure of the breed is useful in any way.
      And since there are no testings for the dogs personality, I guess your correct mastiff is not judged for by anyone, so why u using the quote to mention why ppl are wrong for saying that a less heavy dog is better?

      Or u tryin to sound artsy?

      Perhaps people'd rather a mastiff be able to chase after rabbits, than be structurally unable to. I haven't seen ppl say they want mastiffs to have a high prey drive, only they want 2 see less heavy and wrinkly mastiffs.

      and yh, I aint got time for good grammar lol.

      Delete
    4. Ah, The Dog by "Stonehenge"
      Lovely.

      But its not "The Standard".

      The dogs are judged by another standard that excludes those sentiments and values.
      Unless they they happen to accompany the pedigree, They aren't part of the 'Standard'.

      Delete
    5. That's the saddest excuse for 143 years of inbreeding I've ever read. Bearing in mind the Kennel Club was founded in 1873.

      "The purpose of the breed is quite clear, the breeding of a large reliable guard and companion"

      Not you will notice a floor mat. A Mastiff is about as much a deterrent as a skinned polar bear. A "reliable guard" must at all costs be able to leap onto its toes and do the job not play dead dreaming of Blush Noisette roses and peached faced children about its neck! Not "discriminate" against all work full stop.

      They will tell you its meant to be a deterrent just on looks alone. Yes believe me they are, no one in their right minds would go through the expenses and heartbreak of owning a show bred "English mastiff".

      I think the standard for one thing needs urgent attention, all mention of a working dog must be scrapped. All mention of drive (will, discrimination, whatever they want to call it) must be scrapped. All the stupid hype they mouth during Crufts commentary must be obliterated. Instead we should hear, "doesn't have the will to even get up", "so badly constructed it cant run", "lives for nothing".........etc

      Yes of course the Mastiff needs drive!!!! Its not a stuffed toy. Of course it needs to be athletic enough to be a deterrent. But mostly it just needs to be healthy enough and long lived enough to be a decent pet in this day and age where there are far more suitable healthy homestead protection mastiff types and other breeds already.

      Even a bandogge of uncertain ancestry is a better working alternative and truer representative of the present English mastiff.

      Delete
    6. Firstly, you’re wrong in years. Inbreeding (yes also recorded) exists from before 1873. Then re your whipped story about the Mastiff breed, have you ever attended a show? No, in that case you’re one of those simple minds who blindly swallow the cunning PDE recipes, ie eagerly searching after a pic of an old time one favoured for its ‘charming’ beauty, confronting a bad present-day breed specimen, and then pontificating the present state of the breed as a whole is bad and if there’s a good one then the reasoning is –‘he’s young, but, believe me, when he gets older he also becomes a wreck’. Quite objective approach, isn’t it? If you should be in your right mind, then you should look further than the nose of PDE. What drive? Prey drive, drive to kill? The genuinely calm Mastiff takes up duty only if necessary and w/out bloodshed unlike the hyperkinetic annoying eriks you so dearly love and propagate.

      Delete
    7. Inbreeding is something that has always happened, in the past, in nature, etc.
      However, in the history of a landrace or species, there was always the ability to outcross, and fewer popular sires.
      However, with the ridiculous closed pedigree, outcrossing cannot happen, which is when inbreeding slowly eats away at the health of the species.

      Prey drive is everything to a dog. It is what lets a dog wish to play with toys, to chase after balls, play tug, etc. No, it does not mean necessarily to kill.
      In a border collie, prey drive is the desire to herd, and killing the animal would make a terrible herding dog.
      In a retriever, its a modified prey drive, where the dog wants to retrieve the prey, and must do so without shaking the prey and with a soft mouth.

      Delete
    8. Exactly Sunny Dogs. Without drive a dog is a sad lump of flesh, its muscle withers down its shoulders it stoops and can barely muster a trot. Sounds familiar? At best an untrusworthy heap of nothing with a dicy character. You need hips to even be able to stand up.....

      "The genuinely calm Mastiff takes up duty only if necessary and w/out bloodshed unlike the hyperkinetic annoying eriks you so dearly love and propagate."

      Thats the whole point, they can't take up duty when necessary, they've had the stuffing bred right out of them. They dont even have the neccesary physical attributes never mind the will.

      Dead right some of the eriks most definately would make contact, it all depends on the situation. That all important intuiting. Someone standing facing you in your bedroom pointing an AK47 at your head is going to need a little more than a grunt from under the bed. Never mind a large guardian breed I would even trust a good JRT to do the job better than an "English mastiff" and I do!

      The dog Wyants romanticises and waxes lyrical about defending it's homestead, is in its prime is nothing but a sad garbage bag, a gaseous broken waste of kibble that you're likely to trip over and break your neck.

      Delete
    9. Correct, ‘all rubbish’ what you replied here. What do you want? That only people may own a dog who have a business to do in relation to dogs, ie shepherds, policemen, military, rat catchers, butchers (bull-baiting to improve the quality of meat), gangsters, &c? You’re unreal, society has changed and most people own dogs as companions and yes also pedigree dogs. Are you the person to forbid it? And re show people, they are only a small minority but you’re so eager to present all pedigree dog owners as narrow minded hunters of ribbons. It one more time makes clear that you, from head to minimus, are biased. And about romanticising, are you not the one who presented here –The terrific one in a million Tosa at Bangkok’ saga? Or, how projection can twist one’s mind. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychological_projection

      Delete
    10. Even a pet needs to be healthy, functional, for all the obvious reasons...it's no less a working dog than a retriever or a sniffer dog is in my opinion.

      J'adore little, preferably short haired companion dogs, house dogs..... Im sickened to the stomach by the fact that so many of the most charming little devoted, wonderful dogs in the world are intentionally bred to suffer for the show ring.

      "Society" is in fact in a constant flux, this might not be apparent to you in your part of Little Britain. Obviously you have at least the internet so you should at least know working dogs beyond the function of pet and companion are still very much a part of life at home and around the world.

      Personally these days I tend to go for dogs that are both companion and security.

      Sounds familiar? Why now doesn't it just? Yes because that's exactly what the Mastiff is meant to be!? It's even in your standard for ***** sake?

      Delete
  26. What ever happened to "don't judge a book by its cover" (i.e. breed standard)?

    Nowhere in the breed ring does a dog get judge to perform a function (other than look pretty, stand pretty, and walk pretty).

    There are no earthen dens in the ring to judge terriers. There are no livestock in the ring to judge the pastoral group. There are no "bad guys" in the ring to judge protection breeds. Where is the snow to judge the sled dogs? Birds and shotguns to judge the retrievers? There isn't even any families with small children in the ring to judge the dogs to be pets. The ring is nothing more than a circular catwalk; judging the book by its cover.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So true! I remember reading that in "the old days" (not sure exactly when), terriers who showed a feisty attitude and willingness to fight other terriers were actually looked upon favorably in the show ring. I can't remember where I read that, unfortunately, nor do I know if it's true.

      Delete
    2. The problem with holding up "the standard" as the golden ticket to perfection is akin to the problem of blindly following a religious text. There are words written there that seem to be taken as gospel and not questioned, when they most definitely should be; there's no sound science to back up those words; and when anyone questions those words, they are faced with formidable backlash..."but the standard is sacred! You're not in the breed, so there's no way that you know what you're talking about or know what may improve the dogs! We like it just the way it is! The standard is perfection!" And on and on...it's really quite ridiculous. Dog breeds were created by people by mixing many different types of dogs together, and purebred breeding in its current form has only been happening since what, the late 1800's? And dogs have been around for close to 30,000 years? Do you really think you all know what's "best" for dogs? Closed gene pools and beauty standards don't cut it. It is absolutely silly and anti-science to be so clingy to notions of "pedigree." Out-crossing or even just relaxing standards in favor of genetic diversity (bringing in working lines, breeding for more moderate phenotypes, allowing colors that were for some dumb reason shunned by some fancier a few decades ago, etc.) is preferable to compromising the dogs' well-being, functionality, and longevity...that should be a given.

      Delete
  27. Yep. As I said, the problem isn't that the standard and pedigree is there, to be used. But who taken sole rights to use it, and respond to it.

    So that nothing much else is brought to it.
    No environmental values.

    Closed stud books are a problem, but what makes that problem so much worse and near impossible to change is that the culture of the K.Cs is also closed to any ideas or values not written into a standard for pedigree.

    Pedigrees and standards aren't a bad idea.
    But to put all your "faith" in dogs, into one idea and try to make that a universal faith is a very bad idea.

    Doesn't matter if people don't understand the Mastiff standard. The point is that any other ideal out side of that fixed standard is squashed, and all breeds judged only by what they bring to the "Standard" in show rings or ritualized trial rings.
    Not by what values the 'standard' brings to its environment, out side the ring.
    Or by what the environments out side the rings might demand.

    I would be much happier for pedigree dogs to continue.
    They won't and can't if the culture that holds them keeps trying to limit the value of dogs to their own standards.
    Because how on earth can you define what your standards can BRING if they are always opposed to whats not there?

    No wonder we are locked into reducing the species according to what we DON'T want.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. http://www.mastiffclub.com/club/breed-standard.htm

      Above a link to the actual Mastiff breed standard. Now, in order to become a lil more specific, what bothers you in this standard? What other ideal(s) you propose? What (environmental) values need to be added? I’m curious about your answers.

      Delete
    2. Well, I'm not the person that posted the original comment, but I can begin

      1. It doesn't mention limits. Doesn't say exactly where the dog becomes too heavy, doesn't mention for every bone what is too much, too extreme.
      Nothing there stops Mastiffs being bred with near straight hocks with no angulation, or anything regarding too much bone or weight, or how to judge when things have gone too far.

      2. So highly up to interpretation its unbelievable. A "absolute soundness" can mean different things to different people.
      What is "powerfully built"? Is that a dog which can summon a lot of power in movement? in weight? In biteforce? I would consider a racing greyhound a powerfully built dog as the speed and sheer muscle and momentum they have would equate to a LOT of force and power.
      Or a pitbull could be powerfully built because they have the most muscle mass to body weight ratio or something along those lines.
      An Elephant, or a beached Manatee could be considered powerful because if one fell on you or was thrown at you, you would die and not make a single impact on the animal, or if you tried to move one, you couldn't, and for the average human would be an unstoppable force.

      3. How much do they judge temperament in the standard? Of course, they use the standard for judging, but they don't really even touch temperament.
      A few lines mentioned, says nothing about prey drive, activity levels, trainability, etc.
      Not that it would be judged anyway.
      People choose the breed for its personality, yet breed them for their appearance?

      4. Despite being so vague and up to interpretation, people still try to find the "perfect" member of the breed? It doesn't tell you whats the ultimate mastiff, why do people pretend that it is a good guide?
      It doesn't say they exact perfect weight and height, the perfect leg length to height ratio, the perfect amount of wrinkles, the perfect depth for the ribcage, etc.
      Why pretend as if you can get an ideal mastiff from a piece of writing?
      It seems to be more of a general description of the appearance than a guide to breed the ultimate mastiff.

      5. It has not done any good for the mastiff breed.
      Sure, may argue otherwise, but breeding for a standard that is so vague results in inbreeding, popular sires, removing useful genes from the genepool because of appearance, obsession with purity preventing outcrossing, etc.
      Not to mention everything people have complained at above! No need to repeat what others have said already with the structure of the modern mastiff.

      Delete
    3. Thx for your answer. You’re right, it doesn’t mention limits of size, exact degrees of angulation, &c. It is a guideline designed to assist the fancy. Everything stands or falls with the honesty of the user. Much depends upon the fact if you can digest the standard as a whole, keeping in mind that all parts of it need to be balanced with each other in order to get an overall picture wherein nothing predominates. The standard is already a long one, so it should become a table book if every single detail should be documented at nauseum and there’s comes in the ‘common sense’ of the reader, p ex large & powerful is not meant in the sense of a lump of fat, &c.

      Yes, absolute soundness can mean different things to different people, especially the ones who are headstrong in some direction, whether favouring the light version or the overdone one. What or who can or may stop people who don’t want to grasp the standard in its whole consistency. P ex the sentence ‘muscles sharply defined’ is quite clear but a lot of people overlook it in their obsession for size. How many advertise their dogs including their weight as if it should be a parameter for quality. Powerfully built is a Mastiff who, despite his large size, can move & jump easily. Biteforce is irrelant because the breed is designed (in the ultimate of danger) to jump down the intruder, stand over and growl till the situation is cleared. The temperament can be judged in the general behavior incl the glance of the eyes. The Mastiff is a guard not a hunter, so there’s no need for prey drive. Correct, people choose the breed for its personality which is part of their appearance, reason why a responsible breeder doesn’t breed from a shy unconfident parent.

      Yes, the standard indeed is vague and up to interpretation but which standard isn’t if you read them word for word instead of puzzling those single words together? Quote – ‘It has not done any good for the mastiff breed.’, that’s your opinion not more or less. I’m the last to pretend that the present state of the Mastiff breed is ideal, nor am I an advocate of inbreeding or popular sires, on the other hand - let it be said, a single outcross to another breed is only a cry in the dark, especially if you cross-breed back to the original breed over several generations. ‘Theoretical’ genetic input – 1st generation each parent 25% , 2nd gen each of 4 grandparents 6,25%, 3rd gen each of the 8 great-grandparents 1,56%, 4th gen each of the 16 great-greatparents ca 0,4%. So where’s the gain of a single outcross after some gens of crossing back? The only option for such people is to outcross again and again until there’s nothing left of the original breed.

      Delete
    4. Wynants,

      I don't see a problem with having standards as general descriptions of an ideal to work towards.

      What I see as the problem is having an Organization with closed stud books, also having a culture closed to what is out side its 'self' identity.
      A Standard IS a condition of its environment.
      That in itself isn't a bad thing. But what I am saying is that a 'standard' has no value in and of itself.
      Its the values BROUGHT to a standard that support it. Or not.

      The pedigree in K.C orgs. sets the parametres of a 'breeder'. The Org. is closed to those who disagree. Inherently. There fore any value to the standard may only be brought to it by those in the K.C environment already.
      But those people, by excluding whats outside the pedigree system as some thing to be avoided, must constantly strive to determine an identity.
      Thats usualy based on what values are offered to the community you exist in.
      In the K.Cs, that value IS the pedigree and its standards.
      The environment IS the K.Cs. Thats how they are defined. It NOT based on what values they bring to the standard, but by what sets a K.C environment apart from the rest of breeders.

      So a K.C members are defined by what values they reject. Not what they bring.
      Nothing can be brought to a pedigree that isn't there. Refinement must be accomplished by rejection.
      Better health can't be brought to a standard, so we health test to know what to reject.
      Members who strive for some thing different to whats on display today, are seen to be little better than BYBers, or puppy farmers, or whatever 'influence' they are bringing into the K.C environment.

      A closed culture, on TOP of closed pedigrees, MUST operate under a system of rejection. The values that support a standard aren't valid in that closed environment. The standard and pedigree IS the purpose. Not the values that support it.
      Its similar to an organism or cell that rejects its environment and attacks its own system of support. Like an over active immune system.
      It can't bring value, It can only decide what to reject.

      Delete
    5. @Wynants
      You need to learn more about outcrossing and how its extremely valuable for increasing genetic diversity, I'd suggest learning more from the institute of canine biology.
      http://www.instituteofcaninebiology.org/

      Genetic diversity will be one of the most important factors in keeping any breed of dog in a closed pedigree alive for future generations.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous27 July 2016 at 13:09

      Thx for the advice but I already did it. A throbbing name, although not quite reliable as I experienced there after seeing a COI diagram. To be specific – it a/o interpretes a 6% COI (with five generations) for a dog as – dixit - a relatively low risk but if one expands the calculation over 20 or more gen-s , then that same dog may have a high COI (ca 25%). Well, excuse me, but a five generations COI includes ca 97% of that dog’ genetic input, what remains after the 5th generation till the Ark of Noah forms only some 3%, yes you read well 3%.

      Which means that the increase of 19% - from 6% (5th gen) to 25% (20 or more gen-s) - presented by their diagram is simply flat-catching in order to suit their needs.

      Another point is that following Wiki the average life expectancy of mongrels is 13,2 years. Compared to another source

      http://www.petmd.com/dog/wellness/evr_dg_how_long_do_dogs_live , it’s quite clear that the majority of the breeds listed has a life expectancy which is near (SD1) to the life expectancy of mongrels. If one takes into account that, just like that majority of breeds, mongrels are usually of small or medium size having long snouts, it may support the idea that those features make the difference in average age compared to large dog breeds & the short-faced ones. This means that outcrossing cannot guarantee an improvement of health in long snouted small or medium sized dogs because the proof is simply in the pudding, mongrels = results of varied outcrossings don’t live significantly longer, they also die at about similar age due to different diseases &/or aberrations.

      It may be also clear that outcrossing amongst large breeds, or amongst short-faced breeds may remain resultless because large size, within the spectrum of breeds, shall always remain a main factor of life expectancy below par, a/o due to their proportional smaller heart (the motor); on the other hand short-faced breeds could life longer if their identities become skewed into some long snouted lookalikes. Simply said, do care for your dog, don't overfed and provide exercise & a lot of dedication and, let it be said, just like in humans, it's not a question of only number of years but quality in life.

      Delete
    7. Kind advice for future purchasers of a pup; keep in mind that it has a low COI (no near relationship between parental branches) in order to restrict the chance of inherited diseases/disorders.

      Delete
  28. The problem IS the standard because the standard only focuses upon one aspect of a dog that is controlled by genes (by breeding). Genes (breeding) control appearance (aka the breed standard), health/disease (not visible in the ring) and behaviors/temperament (not assessed in the ring). The breed descriptions then claim that because it looks like the breed standard it has the whole package as described in the breed standard and breed description.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Temperament.
    Calm, affectionate to owners, but capable of guarding. Usually indifferent with strangers; timidity is unacceptable.

    I never see "capable of guarding" ever assessed in the ring. How is this part of the standard met? How is "affectionate to owners" assessed by judges in the ring? "Calm" under what circumstances (just trotting around the ring and being handled by a judge)? How is calm assessed by a judge in real world situations?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Its all rubbish!

      For me the most laughable part of Crufts for example is the commentary as each breed makes its entrance.

      Bred to hunt, stamina, tenacity blah blah. Originally concealed in the sleeves of Chinese Empresses, oh yea try stuffing that enormous fat rolling porky ball of already suffocating legless fluff up your sleeve....

      Thing is working function has been lost in most pedigree show dogs, they are no longer selected for the very attributes still given them. This lie is fine as long as they can still hold up their end and make decent pets. But most don't make decent pets because they're riddled with genetic diseases brought about by the system of closed registries and selection for ever exaggerated deformities. Not even the most rewarded show dog is a good bet as a pet. What you are actually getting in a "pet' quality is even worse, a show reject. Though you may strike it lucky if the breed is healthy (small chance) and it simply doesn't conform colour wise or size wise or or....

      So what good is a dog if it all it can manage is to win ribbons, very little to anyone, even the exhibitor will be looking to dump it down the line unless it has marketable breeding value. It's like a show hunter, you're hardly going to throw it around the country side are you unless you want to break your neck. It can't hunt, too fat for one thing.

      For the most these sick deformed animals are bred for no other purpose than to win shows. The fattest pig at the fair. At least you get to eat the pig afterwards.

      Delete
  30. Mongrels, presuming Wiki is a reliable source, live averagely 13,2 years. If they should be the final goal in dog breeding according to people obsessed by COI’s, &c, then it might be an idea to firstly ban all (100+) breeds whose life expectancy is averagely below this score. What remains are following http://www.petmd.com/dog/wellness/evr_dg_how_long_do_dogs_live four lucky ones (all with score 14) – the Cairn Terrier, the Jack & Parson Russell Terriers, the Lhasa Apso and the Miniature Poodle. Crossing them may result in even better expectancies, ie the Cairny Jack, the Jack Lhasa, the Apso Poodle, &c. Don’t dare to cross breeds of a bit larger size because their expectancies may drop below the mutt average.

    ReplyDelete
  31. To those who say neither images are good representations of the breed, I would be interested to see what people would consider a good representation :)
    So if anyone would like to, it would be interesting to see images of what people think is the closest to the ideal Mastiff, that way you can choose the image of the dog which you think would best represent the breed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dont think there is anything living that wouldn't be a cross breed or only have mastiff in its distant past.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous 26 July 2016 at 16:15

      Here a link to a videolink presenting a Mastiff pretty close to the breed standard requirements https://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=BE&v=WIuL2IhUsgs

      Delete
    3. Westgort is obviously an absolutely adorable dog. Aren't they all.

      Huggability a full ten.

      He does have good angulation but his movement is not committed enough, "absolutely sound". This is musculature, he needs hard muscle for the all important drive from behind to be effective. Even at a young age. Not exactly a wobbler but on take off not terribly stable behind either which should get worse as he gets "older". Old being relative in Mastiffs.

      Ligaments muscle all need to come together as one to give the dog the effortless elasticity and scope a dog needs, particularly a big heavy dog because that keeps the joints sound longer. It's just no use having the musculature type and cover of a Labrador with that size frame.



      Delete
    4. Thx for your opinion, no problem there. I see a well-knit dog who presents decent muscle tone (the opposite of a slack posture), muscles on thighs & off shoulder placement well defined, keeping his top line straight on the move, no disturbing turn in elbow or hock but straight on in an easy way. So what do you mean with hard muscle? Do you like them leaner as to show off their ribcage or/& is the dog’ musculature underdeveloped due to lack of exercise? Imo, the dog is a good example, not perfect but if this should become the quality of the ‘average’ future Mastiff I would sign for it.

      Delete
    5. Far too much loose skin, especially on the face for me.

      Ignoring the body and legs and all that stuff.
      People should freakin breed a dog that is not a pile of loose skin.
      Its not a blobfish, all that skin has no benefit other than to host bacteria parties, make the dog look more amusing, and to help work on filling up the paddling pool with all those lips would produce.
      Yuck.

      Delete
    6. I think that's because that's what you are used to seeing. To me used to a much more solid dog this dog doesn't fill the eye with effortless power and ability. He should move like a cat when he needs to. Anyway no I don't see this dog being able to do that effectively or even too often.

      Look closely at his hocks when he takes off there is a false start. It should be instant, strong, solid, purposeful. Instant reflex rather than effort.

      Exaggerations leave a dog badly knit even if to the eye they appear wonderfully balanced. This dog is not as bad as your average Neo in the show ring but it's far from confidence inspiring in its movement either.

      Muscle mass and tone is critical in big dogs as is drive. But here again Im used to seeing dogs and thinking he/she is just too big, seeing 70cm as a problem rather than an asset. Weight itself is less important if its the right kind of weight. People who brag or promote their four month old puppy weighing 50KGs are a problem to any large breed.

      There has to be moderation even in a Mastiff. Producing the biggest most imposing dog in looks alone is futile, back to the fattest pig at the fair, the longest carrot on the table...

      This dog doesn't look these things yes, but it looks soft almost like it never truly grew up, at this size he should be much harder already quite capable of a solid sprint, on and off all day. All we get is a playful bounce but I dont see much more in the tank quite honestly..... I would be delighted to be proved wrong, of course.

      Delete
    7. Quote - ’all that skin has no benefit other than to host bacteria parties’ . If you want a complete bacteria-free dog , place him/her under the CSSD survey/care. Do you own animals or are you allergic? Btw, a genuine Mastiff is not something Sharpei-like. I own a Mastiff and I clean him regularly, just like it should be with all other pet dogs.

      RiverP, I presume you’re widlife fancier but ‘unfortunately’ a Mastiff is not a cat ‘designed’ for another function, ie to catch mouses &/or birds in order to make a living. So, there’s no reason he should move that way. Your ‘instant reflex’ is quite subjective, functionality off hocks begins with bringing the Achilles’ tendon under tension, then follows the take-off – in French ‘reculer pour mieux sauter’. There has to be moderation even in a Mastiff. Quite right, but also this is quite subjective, ie the Mastiff in the video probably has only 2/3 of the body weight of the Guinness record holder, a Mastiff called Zorba who was of larger 3D size. NB - a good thing such records are no longer approved as it’s counter productive for animal well-being. You think a Mastiff needs to be capable of solid sprints, on and off all day. For what function? He’s a guard and usually there are not so many thieves on and off all day over here. I leave you in your opinion that the dog in the video looks soft. Other people may also look at the video and decide if you’re right.

      Delete
    8. With no air, all the gunk would obviously fester in between the folds in the face. Sure, you can clean them, but why should they exist? Why?
      Will every pet owner know you have to clean them out to stop infections?
      Why create more work and unhealthy problems for NO REASON?

      2/3 the weight of the heaviest dog alive? Thats revolting.
      If I was 2/3s the weight of the heaviest person, I would be in a state of shock.
      Solid sprints should be allowed for any functional living animal. You care about structure, but not whether the dog is capable of the minimum for movement?
      Get your priorities straight, if the best structured mastiff can't even sprint, then that is why everyone has problems with the breed.

      Imagine a human with skin dripping off their face festering gunk and bacteria, as well as slobber, a body so round any heavy they can barely run at all, let alone sprint, no desire to do anything with their life, and was 2/3s the weight of the record holder for the heaviest person.

      Can you now see the problem?

      Every animal should have a structure which allows them to run. So shut up and realise this is topics like this exist, because some people are so messed up in the head to think this is acceptable!

      It can be both a guard and able to run, dumbass.

      Delete
    9. Tell me a good reason why the dog should NOT be able to sprint? I thought this was a brilliantly structured dog?
      Will the ability to sprint make a bad guard dog somehow?

      Also, why ARE you suddenly bringing up the breeds past as a guard dog?
      Has this dogs instincts been tested? Do you know this dog will pin down an intruder without biting?
      Would it even be able to run and jump at them with enough power in order to put enough momentum onto the shoulders of the person and force them down rather than pushing them backwards?

      Has this dog been proven to be able to do its job, or are you using the job as an excuse when it suits you?

      Seems like the dog would require speed, momentum and jump power, as well as carefully selected innate abilities in order to do what you claim it should be able to do (such as no bite, correct threat detection, the instinct to launch and pin a human down on their shoulders)

      Since it can't even be the type of guard you describe, what BS you going to use next to explain its inability to have any athletic ability?
      Whats the point in breeding good angles etc if you then say the dog doesn't need to be athletic?

      What is the point of anything you are doing?

      Delete
    10. Yes I agree about the head but one thing at a time, first we need the dog to appreciate the finer details of the head. A wet slobbering dysfunctional head with more skin than muscle honestly doesn't work on any level, though.

      This is a pretty random vid of Vinny in his garden, the kind of basic ability I would like to see in any Mastiff breed, the tightness of its musculature the reflexes, scope and very basic drives. This is not a mad neurotic dog, in the wrong hands certainy he could have ended up one. He is simply alert, alive, surely a basic for a guardian breed? This is a perfectly lovely mild mid summers day in the Netherlands, the dog is not handicapped in any way by the weather/sun by the way it has been bred. Sure if the temps were in the mid 90's he would prefer to be lying amongst the roots of a very shady tree, but this would still in no way render him useless as a guardian. He would be up in a flash, on his toes at the first whiff of intrigue making up his own mind weather he should be involved or not.

      There is a fair amount of "English mastiff" in this breeds background and the older dogs tended to be too big for function. This is however a moderate dog, example, he could be a bit bigger/taller even and would still not be compromised, he does become so as he is 2,5 years old in the vid. When size compromises frame and function you have a problem add to that chronic inbreeding, closed registers and ravages of show ring breeding/selection.........

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1N_vTY1K4Lo

      His owner is paralysed from motor racing, this is his confidant and guardian and helped him through a terribly traumatic time. The dog is very well trained and socialised but most importantly nicely bred. He's also not going to kill that cat on the wood pile unless it decided to attack his "people" of course which is highly unlikely.

      Thing is it's no use pointing fingers at all the dangerous dogs and breeds out there and saying how the Mastiff is so much better. It's not. Those are simply two extremes. One has given up the ghost the other has been dangerously bred. Both not really much use to anyone.

      Delete
  32. While there's been some discussion of Mastiff temperament here, I haven't seen any mention of their famous fear-aggression and shyness issues on this thread. I'm a former dog behavior consultant in the U.S. an was a long-time participant in a shy dog forum with thousands of members. About half of those members owned just two breeds: Border Collies and English Mastiffs. I read about shyness and fear-aggression in Mastiffs every day on that forum. I'm surprised none of the UK readers have mentioned the shyness issue, though I have seen breed differences from one country to the next. For example, many Goldens I met while living in Turkey were EXTREMELY stranger and strange-dog aggressive. So maybe you don't have the shyness issues for which the breed is known here.

    I also feel very sorry for these dogs physically. The first time I saw a Mastiff was around 1985, and it was playing in a large garden with a small terrier. The Mastiff couldn't stop or turn, and kept careening into trees, the house, etc. before it could swing around and continue the chase. What kind of a life is that for a dog?


    Regarding agility, I've never seen a Mastiff compete, but one local competitor in my area does compete with a Bullmastiff and another with an Irish Wolfhound. I don't recall seeing either of them qualify, and they walk around some of the obstacles instead of taking them. And the jumps are set quite low for them, as there's an exception for jump heights in giant breeds here. I'd love to see the Mastiff Greyhound crosses turn this around and be successful in agility.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would be bad for a mastiff to compete in agility at full height, especially for its joints. Even if it walks the course, as the full height is too much.
      The dog may not enjoy it either, so its often not worth the time, as its for fun anyway.
      I can imagine a greyhound x mastiff with the right structure (not too heavy, good tuck, etc) would be a much safer choice for agility, nothing to do with potential, but simply for the dog.

      A mastiff could enjoy agility recreationally with low jumps, and it must always be that the dog is enjoying itself.

      Its good that giant breeds where you live have lower jump heights :)
      Where I live, they would not, and I never get to see them around. I have seen a great dane enjoy agility however, and they seem to do alright.

      Delete
  33. wynants27 July 2016 at 13:16
    "I think the modern dog, the Crufts 2016 BOB winner (see p 3rd pic), can jump heigh, has endurance, can move fast & turn quickly, but of course, not in the degrees of a Greyhound."

    "I have a fast car to sell you. Just look at it (or this picture of it); you can tell how fast it is by the way it looks. The windshield is tilted back for better aerodynamics. It hugs the road well going around corners, you can tell that by how close the wheels are to the corners of the body and how low it is to the ground. It can stop on a dime; you can tell that by being able to see how big the brakes are through the spokes in the wheels. There no need for a test drive, you can tell all these things by just looking at it. If you must see it move I'll drive it around the parking lot for you and you can watch it."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. PipedreamFarm27 July 2016 at 13:55

      Btw, thx for the offer but I ain’t gone buy a fast car from you because 1) I don't need it, 2) you even cannot interprete my sentence which begins with ‘I THINK’. So I kindly advice you to google ( p ex dictionary.com) the meaning of ‘THINK’. Have a nice day.

      Delete
    2. Quite normal to read posts of people who are biased re the Mastiff size because of a/o their superficiality. If they should digest the standard they should realise that it’s designed as a calm canine giant capable of guarding with muscles sharply defined but having a large 3D framing incl dixit ‘ribs arched and well rounded’. Why? Because this permits the solid build required to be a powerful guard who doesn’t need to use his teeth but, if necessary, by his weight can easily jump you down in a sec followed by a stand over incl deep growls.

      People who presume the weight of a standardly correct Mastiff is only a lump of fat are usually too blind to observe the very thick Achilles’ tendon annex the fatless but very broad end of second thigh (due to an extra large calcaneus off hock) of a well-bred Mastiff. It’s this enormous lever functioning which a/o provides the strength to push down a sturdy adult. The same people easily confuse a standardly correct Mastiff incl ribs well arched, false ribs deep and well set back to hips’ with a lump of fat because they are used to see their flat-sided doggies missing such kind of ribs/false ribs. Repeat, a standardly correct Mastiff has muscles well defined upon a large 3D framing adequately filled with body mass resulting in a big powerful guard with no single need for back-biting, literally & figuratively…

      Delete
    3. Forget the 29 inch, 130 lbs mastiff mentioned above that can run 35-40pmh?
      They can be both powerful and athletic.

      Delete
    4. OR the fact cheetahs, which are faster than a greyhound can weigh up to 72 kg (often 32-65), and if any animal with that weight lands on you, you will not be standing.
      Lions can weigh 190kg and has been known to reach speeds of 50mph.
      To hit closer to home, the wolf can travel 37mph

      So yes, you can be large, powerful, enough to take down bison, and survive a bone shattering kick from such an animal, and still be built in a way which makes them able to be athletic and fast.
      What's the next excuse?

      Delete
    5. Realised the best comparison, the Bengal Tiger.
      90-110cm withers, 140 kg (female) 220 kg (male), 35-40 mph.

      Basically, can reach the same height as the mastiff, is double the weight of a mastiff, and can still run much faster than a mastiff, and live longer than a mastiff (16-20 years)

      Delete
    6. Actually, the best comparison I can think of would be:

      Bengal Tiger
      Height - 90-110 cm
      Weight - 140kg Female, 220kg Male
      Speed - 35-40mph
      Longevity - 16-20 years.

      Mastiff
      Height - 70-91 cm
      Weight - 55-77 kg Female, 73-100 kg Male
      Speed - Unknown?
      Longevity - 7 years average, claimed 8-10 years

      Not saying they should be built like a tiger, but that trying to excuse the way they are built by saying they need power not speed is a bit poor.
      They can have power, weight, height, etc and can still be fast and long lived.

      Delete
    7. Oops, mentioned same thing twice, sorry about that

      Delete
  34. Maybe unfortunately for you but I personally met the dog in the flesh, and you can watch him moving in the Crufts group video. Not the same, but still better than a single pic. Do you need to know the maximum height of his jump quality, his VOmax, his 100m best time or time he needs to turn 10x around with or w/out windspeed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My comment was more about the general conformation attitude that they can look at a dog and know how it will perform a function. There is no need to assess that dog performing the function. Posters on this board are doing the same thing using the photos.

      Delete
    2. Your description of what you "think" it would be capable of based upon the way it looks (you never indicated otherwise) is exactly a main tenet of conformation.

      Delete
    3. Yes absolutely and this applies to all show dogs, they should be health tested by means of basic performance testing. Make that Peke jump up a flight of stairs, can that pug survive an ordinary mild and pleasant summers day stroll in the park.....are these dogs healthy enough to even be pets?

      Delete
  35. wynants27 July 2016 at 20:41
    "It may be also clear that outcrossing amongst large breeds, or amongst short-faced breeds may remain resultless because large size, within the spectrum of breeds, shall always remain a main factor of life expectancy below par, a/o due to their proportional smaller heart (the motor); on the other hand short-faced breeds could life longer if their identities become skewed into some long snouted lookalikes."

    ...due to their proportional smaller heart (the motor).... [really??????]

    You should read this epidemiological study.

    Mortality in North American Dogs from 1984 to 2004: An Investigation into Age-, Size-, and Breed-Related Causes of Death
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1939-1676.2011.0695.x/full

    "It has long been observed that dogs from larger breeds have shorter lifespans than dogs from smaller breeds, in contrast to the more common pattern among mammals overall, where larger species tend toward longer lifespans than smaller ones. This observation has been the source of much recent interest, increasing with the completion of the canine genome.2,14–17,22–24 If we can understand which causes account for death among dogs from larger breeds as compared with dogs from smaller breeds, we may better understand why it is that dogs from smaller breeds live longer.


    In our study, increasing breed size was associated with increasing risk of death because of musculoskeletal or gastrointestinal system disease. Dogs from larger breeds seemed to be spared death because of neurologic or endocrine diseases. Neoplastic disease was a more frequent cause of death in dogs from larger breeds, whereas dogs from smaller breeds had increased risk of death because of metabolic processes. Traumatic causes were responsible for death in dogs from larger and smaller breeds at similar rates. Given these findings, we support future research into the disproportionate rates of musculoskeletal and neoplastic disorders in dogs from larger breeds to better understand their shorter lifespans. Previous authors have reported that despite the shorter lifespan of dogs from larger breeds overall, larger individuals within given breeds do not exhibit a shorter lifespan. Because our data did not include individual dog weights and we assigned breed-standard body mass to all dogs of each breed, we were not able to evaluate the possible influence on risk of death by individual size within a given breed."


    Did you read this?
    "Previous authors have reported that despite the shorter lifespan of dogs from larger breeds overall, larger individuals within given breeds do not exhibit a shorter lifespan."

    What this study suggests is that it is not simply size that causes shorter lifespans but that along with the genes to create breeds of larger sizes genes making these dogs more prone to certain diseases also lowered their life expectancy.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I’ve read it and who am I to discard it? On the other hand, after your misinterpretation re - ‘I THINK’ - (see former post) another one follows , ie my post stated ‘a/o due to their proportional smaller heart (the motor), and you certainly know a/o stands for AMONGST OTHERS. Re proportionally smaller heart size in large dogs - Scientific studies made clear that, in general, the relation of heartweight to body-weight follows the law of an inverse proportion which thus means a large dog has indeed a proportionately smaller heart; they also found out that, at the onset of heart failure, myocardial contractility is decreased in only some small dogs but many large dogs. A proportionately smaller heart needs to produce life-long more effort to keep the ship going which may lead faster to hypertrophy causing decrease of contractility.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I presume you’re an expert in googling ‘studies’, so you also can find out if the content of my post is correct or incorrect . After all, I’m not your secretary :)

      Delete
  37. There's a very interesting discrepancy between the number of claims of athleticism, longevity and working ability and the verifiable documentation of such.

    One good thing about standardised trials, at least if a dog has passed it, you know what it did do. How about the Schutzhund endurance test for a nice athletic mastiff? It's not particularly hard -- only 12 miles in 1.5 hours. Condition your dog for it, enter it, pass it, post the results.

    Too much? Your dog only has explosive speed, not endurance? Ok, take a six foot fence. Tape a yardstick to one side so it's clearly marked as being honestly as high and tape your dog jumping it -- your camera phone will do just fine. But his joints will get hurt (from doing it so much as once). Interesting... isn't it time to face up to reality?

    In a world where every pocket has the kind of recording equipment it used to cost hundreds to get, there really isn't a good reason not to evidence your dogs' ability. Or lack thereof.


    ReplyDelete
  38. In a world where many people have internet they have the possibility to look at videos like this one https://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=BE&v=WIuL2IhUsgs (already mentioned here few days ago). You’re not satisfied? It’s only one Mastiff? Well, take up a google and find other ones relating to the Mastiff. I’m not here to advertise the breed but to reply to those things which are skewed by people with an agenda. I’m the last one to pretend that all Mastiffs are sound, but perhaps you can find a breed w/out any unsound one? It depends on many things, not at least the skills of the owner re keeping a 3D large breed like Mastiff. It’s not that easy as you may think. A lot of people on this blog doesn’t seem to like show ‘competition’ for perhaps some good reason, now you come and find the need to propose similar ones, a/o an endurance race of 12 miles in 1.5 hours. Are you perhaps an Olympc athlete who does it every morning and evening with your dog(s)? I’ve some dislike for people who regularly talk about the size of their Mastiff(s), because in many instances it’s only bragging and, be honest, figures don’t make the dog or the man as it’s all about quality which you need to experience in real time without a ruler, a tapeline, scale or chrono. The same goes for your tests, ie quite relative approach of a dog’ qualities in daily life.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have looked at this footage and others and at no point has one dog so much as left the ground with all four feet, not even to clear a six-inch gap. If this is what you consider good, then these dogs are really pathetic. It's time to face reality -- they lumber. They gasp. These aren't dogs going very far or fast or for very long.

      You can find no shortage of dogs of any breed with serious structural issues that prevent them being active. Let's take rotties for example. No end of them are plagued with elbow and hip dysplasia and do well to hobble through life. But then you also have this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KpGJY5dx_u4 There are loads of rottweilers with endurance titles, carting, agility, obedience, protection sports, working in the field as police or military dogs. So, where are the equivalent mastiffs? Even at a basic level?

      I do agree with you that tests and titles are not the be all and end all of measurement, but they *are* a known and knowable yardstick. I'm particularly skeptical of competitive titles, but they too have some value. Tests highlight worthwhile attributes to select for and develop. I've noticed that when a breed stops being routinely tested, those things that the breed is supposedly good at (great nose, super trainable, brave, hunting instincts, able to work) also become hard to find.


      I put it to you that if you say that you have athletic dogs, then you should be able to find dogs able to do what athletic dogs do -- trot for 12 miles or jump a decently high jump. The examplars don't appear to be able to manage a single-suspension gallop, jump at all (not even one foot), or meet any standard and tells you something. Your standards aren't just low, they're supine.

      I'm wrong? SHOW ME THE FOOTAGE! Nothing would make me happier than to be wrong, to see these graviportal dogs surprise one with a turn of speed, of lightness of foot. It would be awesome, worth celebrating and worth propagating. I don't want to believe that size precludes performance, like these lovely livestock guarding dogs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVZBwEINqzU). I really don't. But the evidence is very disappointing when it comes to mastiffs.

      Delete
    2. Your Rottweiler doesn’t jump but climbs the fence. But go and get a Rottie. Btw, next footages show the pit bull dog power and may uncover your real passion, ie neurotic canine aggressors. I’ve also looked at your Maremma, ie ‘ King (what’s in a name?) who was behind me heard something down at the bottom of the field and all three dogs went quickly’ ... if this footage is meant to show up that size doesn’t preclude performance, then you must be kidding. The landscape aside, where’s the size? Where’s your perfection in movement? Well, in average dogs standing cow-hocked and galloping down the hill, the other one only gazing at the scenery, being too lazy or cripple? It's time for you to face reality, ie you’re biased re the Mastiff breed.

      Delete
    3. Climbing the fence is more than your mastiff can do, so whats the point in the details if both climbing and jumping are beyond your "perfectly structured" dog.

      The perfection in movement is that they can actually run.

      Who gives a **** about angles if the dog cannot even do the basics of movement.
      What kind of idiot can't even get the basic structure right? And instead focuses on the details?
      Its like building a bridge out of pure sand, no matter how well and perfectly designed you build that bridge, its made from sand.

      Get the show mentality out of your head, this is the real world where we expect real results, rather than "make believe".
      Trotting around a ring and pretending the dog is a structural masterpiece is like a child pretending they are usain bolt.
      Who knows if that child is actually a perfect athlete or not if they never raced or trained properly.

      If you believe your dog is actually built like an athlete, it should be very easy to prove it, and if you can't, then you have no proof otherwise. Simple as.
      If you claim you have the goods, you have to bring them, instead of trying to avoid the issue that you cannot.

      You have shown nothing that you preach. You have not shown an althetic dog in any way, you have not shown a powerful dog in any way, and you have not shown a dog which will protect you in any way, you have shown a pile of garbage incapable of anything except a pretty trot.

      "To lazy, a cripple"
      Really? That is so ironic. Assume a dog not chasing after the treat is a cripple, but when a well structured mastiff would not be able to do the same, you think the dog is a brilliant athlete? Stop the double standards lol.

      Now, if you want to reply, you have to show a video of a mastiff doing something athletic, doesn't have to be impressive.
      You say you got a powerful dog, what about weightpull?
      You say you have a dog with a good structure for endurance, then perhaps show a dog that has taken an endurance test?
      Or they can jump high, show it?

      I've seen Boerboels do some pretty athletic stuff, should be easy for a well structured mastiff, right?
      If you can't respond with an actual example, then don't respond at all.

      Delete
    4. Quote – ‘The perfection in movement is that they can actually run.’ – OK, if that’s enough for you. What kind of idiot can't even get the basic structure right? It seems that’s you, unable to observe hind quarters badly cow-hocked, not to mention the one with even sickle hocks, thereby presuming there are only details. And, pardon me, your shabby Maremma video doesn’t make believe anything other than a standing lazy or cripple one gazing at two running silly ones excited by some sound far away, perhaps some woodpecker drumming on a tree. Is that your understanding of working dogs? I believe my dog is breed standardly rather properly built and if you don’t, I don’t care because you’ve no clue re conformation (ref – your blindness re a/o cow-hocks). I don’t preach, I only ascertain your inability to show up correct conformation in working dogs. Quote – ‘Stop the double standards’, yeah who says it? About showing up performances, it’s useless to convince the doubting Thomas. You’ve seen Boerboels? Well, that’s good for you. Do you like their docked tails? Does it bother you as genuine dog fancier? Or do you think it’s a functional remembrance of archaic torture? If, if, if. Is is now you who determines the rules of PDE posting? I think you’re once more kidding.

      Delete
    5. Hmm, I guess the wolf, which is slightly cowhocked, for billions of years of evolution was carefully selected so only the toughest survives is your idea of a poorly structured dog, huh?
      Well, may not be ideal, but in moderation it seems cowhocks are not something that nature deems important to select out of wolves.
      You make it seem like a bigger problem than it is. In fact, I believe it to be a very weak observation on your behalf, you can do better.

      Sure, cowhocks may slightly reduce efficiency in mild situations, but my point still stands, these dogs can actually run.
      Who the **** cares about the structure if your dogs are fundamentally broken?

      Thats not my Maremma btw, its SecondThoughtsOptionals example.

      Why you changing the subject onto docked tails lol, cant answer my simple request to see a mastiff be able to do anything athletic?
      A trot is not a performance, its pretending they are doing the performance.

      These dogs are supposed to respond to the sound of any threat immediately. Whether its fake or not. They also have better hearing than both a camera and the human ear can pick up, so who knows what they heard.

      Either way, you cannot criticize dogs working when a mastiff is one of the most pathetic excuses of a working dog out there. Criticize your own breeds lack of any form of working ability first before criticizing a dog at least actually acting showing some form of reaction, whether its to an imaginary or wrongly interpreted threat or not, my guess if that actually was a threat, they would be responding to that as well.

      Delete
    6. I really think that you should stop crisicizing other dogs, its making you look bad.
      Every time you say "that dog is a cripple because it didn't go to the threat", its an embarrassment because your beloved mastiffs wouldn't do that either. Are they a cripple too?

      Despite the cowhocks, they can still run and jump to attention. Whats your mastiffs excuse?
      So, if those dogs had perfect structure, then what would your excuse be?

      Take a look at this Boerboel:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kbe59_Kp6Zg

      Sure, this dog is far too active for a protector with too high of a preydrive, but that is not my point. My point is that it is both sturdy and agile.
      Don't distract by talking about the high preydrive or docked tail. Don't talk about structure.

      The point of a good structure is what? To give the dog the best movement? Or to win in shows? Or to judge other dogs?
      Lets say its the first one. Whats the point in perfecting angles if the dog still can't do what a poorly angled dog can? It seems like focusing on things like the hocks, elbows etc. have far more diminished rewards for good movement than simply breeding a dog whos basic structure allows for movement in the first place.

      Show me an athletic mastiff, and don't respond if you can't.

      Delete
    7. Hi, if you google wolf images you indeed may find an overwhelming majority of correct hocks (straight in line with the bodily axis), those few cow-hockeds may perhaps not survive long due to the consequences of such a dysplastic structure, so not some futility. Quote –‘but my point still stands, these dogs can actually run.’ The question is, for how long before they get the same attitude as Maremma ‘King’, seemingly lazy &/or cripple. Quote – ‘Your dogs are fundamentally broken?’ Wow, are you suggesting that all Mastiffs are fundamentally broken?

      Why you changing the subject onto docked tails lol? Because I seemingly observe the whole dog, archaic docked tails included. Quote – ‘A trot is not a performance’ – Well well, so you may also think that cart horse racing is not a performance? As you may know those horses trot. Quote- ‘These dogs are supposed to respond to the sound of any threat immediately.’ Correct, if done properly. In case of a wolf that far away, the flock they should guard should be better off if not left alone with a seemingly lazy or cripple one; wolves chase in packs, so perhaps ‘assistants’ launch the ultimate attack on their flock from the opposite side.

      Quote – ‘You cannot criticize dogs working when a mastiff is one of the most pathetic excuses of a working dog out there.’ Really working? Or playing in the snow or perhaps chasing a far away Woody Woodpecker? I do criticize my own breed, see my first post on this very page. And your guess is what it is, a guess. Or do you have special equipment?

      Quote – ‘I really think that you should stop crisicizing other dogs’, - I don’t say that dog is a cripple, but only presume that he may be lazy or cripple. Yes, a genuine Mastiff would not run down the long hill to chase some futility because his/her imprint is to protect a/o his people and that’s impossible by running far away senselessly.

      The Boerboel looks fine, and I also think breed standardly OK. Quote- ‘My point is that it is both sturdy and agile’. It all depends upon what you mean with sturdy. Compared to what? To a Greyhound? Quote – ‘Whats the point in perfecting angles if the dog still can't do what a poorly angled dog can?’ ??? What’s the benefit of being poorly angulated?

      Finally (I do not stay till the cows come home, you know), your celebrated ‘basic structure’ just depends upon things like hocks, elbow, &c, and if all are correct and well-balanced together, then you’ve good movement. Or are you going to prove a straight up shoulder provides a grander reach forward or that straight backhands provide greater drive, all because there are straight? Good movement is more than running down a hill. And I don’t show you an athletic Mastiff because you’re biased in your endless ‘freakism for athletism’. A Mastiff is a large calm powerful dog capable of guarding (for the rest read the standard), so not a docktailed Boerboel, a Pitbull or even a Maremma ‘King’.

      Delete
    8. IMO Badi the boerboel is not too active for a protector nor does he have too much prey drive! Honestly where on earth do you get that from!

      I dont know the dog personally but he looks very promising as a youngster, playing in the video. Athletic with good drive and manners. My only concern might be that he is a bit lacking in the muscling department.

      He is playing, enjoying himself, its not the same prey drive you would see in a pitbull. They don't sit nicely each time waiting for the feather to be hoisted and they certainly don't sit and release quite so sweetly either. He has a lovely character too far as we can see.

      He will probably grow out of this as he gets nearer three, but some dont and very much still enjoy playing games with balls and Frisbees etc all their lives but have almost zero real prey drive in that they wont hunt little animals like rats, squirrels etc.

      I can see him knocking down an unwanted intruder with great effect but also showing a great deal of restraint in that he wont be knocking people down indiscriminately.

      I like him and yes things can change, the way and direction he is trained is important. All you have to do to turn him into a neurotic mad biting machine is fence him off in a back yard and leave him there.

      Delete
    9. Otherwise I agree 100%. Structure is not critical, it is in the show ring however.

      You have to see the whole picture.

      The Mastiff needs functionality, spark drive and health, athleticism and less exaggeration before it needs perfect conformation, yes I agree. Without all of this even the best looking dog is usless.

      Delete
    10. @River P
      I got that from the fact wynants would probably tell me off and distract from the story by saying his precious mastiff shouldn't be active if I didn't say that.
      Also, you should see some of their other dogs, they are brilliant, I love their dog Batu.

      @Wynants
      With cart horse racing, it is a race. You get a result at the end with a clear winner. The thing is speed. You are not assuming the dog has speed or stamina, it DOES have speed or stamina. It wins, thats the end of it.

      Good angulation is fine, just not the most important when everything else is not right.


      Honestly, can that Mastiff you showed guard anyone? Have you tested its instincts? Anyone can lure the dog away, and then run back to kill the owner, and that mastiff wouldn't even react.
      In fact, I don't think it would react if you just plain up killed the owner.
      And no one has tested it, so there is no proof otherwise.
      Too slow and has no drive, couldn't even outrun a human.

      Good movement starts with the basics. Being able to walk a good distance, trot a good distance, canter a good distance, sprint with good speed, jump with good height.
      How you get there is not important. The results are.
      You can "perfect" movement as much as you want, but if there are no results than its useless.
      What purpose is good angulation when the dog still finds it difficult to move?

      Wolves -
      So, you are saying that the cowhocked wolves are selected against in nature because... You looked at google images?
      Try again.
      Some wolves don't have it, some do, its not been strictly selected against in nature.

      "Cow hocked is referred to a characteristic some wolves may have or share, and it denotes front leg and perhaps backs that are close together or near touching. Yes, this can be sometimes found in wolves, but not always the case, as some wolves indeed can be boxy and do not have this trait all together. Having a stronger boxy body does not negate a wolf's heritage, again like people, some may have this trait. The conclusion, lack of cow hocking does mean a wolf has to have this visible trait in order to be a pure wolf. "

      Aka, its found in a lot of wolves. Not none, not in the mutated wolves, its not uncommon.

      Boerboel -
      Sturdy and athletic in general. As a dog, as a living being, it is both powerful and capable of movement.
      Yes, far better than your mastiff in every way, as you seem to think a good guard doesn't need to move for some reason?
      It does need to move well, end of story.


      Delete
    11. Quote re the Mastiff – Have you tested its instincts? No, but ‘yes you can’. So come and try to steal an apple in our garden but don’t forget to bring along a jumbo roll toilet paper in order to clean up the mess in your pants, unfortunately w/out eating the apple.

      Delete
  39. There is a method for measuring heart size for determining the presence of an enlarged heart (Vertebral Heart Size: http://www.vin.com/apputil/content/defaultadv1.aspx?pId=84&id=4253805). The size of the heart is scaled to the number of vertebrae it spans. The breed specific normal values using this method are all within 2 standard deviations of one another; except for racing bred whippets which have larger hearts (even compared to non-racing bred whippets). Another words, heart size scaled with the size of the vertebrae in breeds across a wide range of sizes.

    How can this be if as "others" indicate larger breeds have proportionally smaller hearts?

    ReplyDelete
  40. I have used google and more importantly google scholar to search for published studies demonstrating proportionally smaller hearts in large breeds. I have found none.

    ReplyDelete
  41. I suggest you research "Insulin-like growth factor I" for what science thinks leads to larger sizes and shorter lifespans.

    ReplyDelete
  42. THE RATIO BETWEEN THE HEART-WEIGHT AND BODY-WEIGHT IN VARIOUS ANIMALS. BY DON R. JOSEPH, M.D. -the Department of Physiology and Pharmacology of the Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research. Page 525 table IV and following alinea.

    ReplyDelete
  43. I think you will find that the knowledge in this area of study has progressed in the over 100 years since this was published

    ReplyDelete
  44. Why does dog with a larger heart to body weight ratio have a shorter lifespan than man which has a smaller ratio? Doesn't that contradict what "others" are saying about larger breeds have shorter lifespans because they have a smaller heart to body ratio?

    ReplyDelete
  45. I think you still haven’t realised the meaning of a/o (amongst others) preceding the sentence re weight ratio heart/body, iow it’s not the one and only cause! Re humans – Nature determines a day fly only lives about a day or so, dogs can breed from the age of about one year, a dog’ average life expectancy is about 13 years, an age necessary for a human to become sexually mature. Nature is too complicated to explain in simple thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Is the current "lump" Mastiff show dog really purebred? Look at it. Doesn't look at all like the pre-dog show era Mastiffs. Looks like somebody's old bulldog dug under the kennel fence. And the Mastiff/Bulldog puppies were registered as a purebred litter instead of a dual-sired litter. Just look at the face of the current show Mastiff and try to say that it doesn't look Bulldogish.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Amongst others, heart weight to body weight ratio is just Internet myth as a cause for shorter lifespan of larger breed dogs. It's such a poor hypothesis it souls revved be "amongst others".

    ReplyDelete
  48. It's so bad it shouldn't even be "amongst others"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, for you it is as it is also a real, so not a virtual, myth that you may wake up to reality instead of cluelessly nit-picking in order to save your already poor image here on this blog subject.

      Delete
    2. May have been a hypothesis but cutting edge research, easily found using google scholar (you should try it), into why large breeds don't live as long as small breeds have abadoned this hypothesis. you highlighted this hypothesis and hopefully are not basing breeding decisions upon this hypothesis

      Delete
  49. He indeed doesn’t look like Mastiffs of the pre-dog show era . In those days the term Mastiff was used by laymen to determine large dogs of more than average substance; different heads/snouts & ditto conformations all of the place. So your premise isn’t not valid. And yes the Mastiff is influenced by the Bulldog, the Boarhound, the St Bernard, the Newfoundland, the Dogue de Bordeaux, &c, and there seems also running Pug blood through their veins. Now, for the comfort, look at a picture of a genuine Bulldog head and compare it carefully to the head of your so-called current lump Mastiff. You must be myopic to not see the differences in a/o proportional lengths of resp muzzles, the presence or absence of layback & turnup in resp muzzles, the resp ears, not to speak about the so many other resp breed features of the resp heads.

    ReplyDelete