The Mastiff is a large, massive, symmetrical dog with a
well-knit frame. Dogs, the males, are more massive throughout their appearance than
the females. Bitches should not be faulted for being somewhat smaller in all
dimensions if they maintain a proportionally powerful structure. A good
evaluation considers positive qualities of type and soundness with equal weight.
The general impression when shown is one of grandeur and dignity. The mastiff is
a member of the AKC Working Group.
- Dogs, minimum, 30 inches at the shoulder.
Bitches, minimum, 27-1/2 inches at the shoulder.
Fault-Dogs or bitches below the minimum standard. The farther below
standard, the greater the fault.
the length of the dog from fore chest to rump is somewhat longer
than the height at the withers. The height of the dog should come from depth
of body rather than from length of leg.
heavy boned, with a powerful muscle structure. Great depth and breadth are
desirable. Fault-Lack of substance or slab sided.
In general outline giving a massive appearance when viewed
from any angle. Breadth is greatly desired.
-set wide apart, medium in size, and not too prominent.
alert and kindly. The eyes should be brown, the darker the better, and
showing no haw. Light eyes or a predatory expression is undesirable.
small in proportion to the skull, V-shaped, and rounded at the tips. Leather
moderately thin, set widely apart at the highest points on the sides of the
skull and continuing the outline across the summit. They should lie close to
the cheeks when in repose. Ears should be dark in color, the blacker the
better, and conforming to the color of the muzzle.
broad and somewhat flattened between the ears, forehead slightly curved,
showing marked wrinkles that are particularly distinctive when at attention.
Brows (superciliary ridges) moderately raised. Muscles of the temples well
developed, those of the cheeks extremely powerful. Arch across the skull a
flattened curve with a furrow up the center of the forehead. This extends
from between the eyes to halfway up the skull.
stop between the eyes will be well marked but not too abrupt.
should be half the length of the skull, dividing the head into three parts:
one for the foreface and two for the skull. In other words, the
distance from the tip of the nose to stop is equal to one-half the distance
between the stop and the occipital. The circumference of the muzzle (measured
midway between the eyes and nose) to that of the head (measured before the
ears) should be 3 to 5. The muzzle will be short, broad under the eyes and
running nearly equal in width to the end of the nose. It should also be truncated, i.e. blunt
and cut off square, forming a right angle with the upper line of the face.
This should also form a great depth from the point of the nose to the underjaw. The
underjaw will be broad to the end and slightly rounded. Muzzle dark in
color, the blacker the better. Fault- Any snippiness of the muzzle.
will be broad and always dark in color, the blacker the better, with spread
flat nostrils (not pointed or turned up) when seen in profile.
-diverging at obtuse angles with the septum and sufficiently pendulous so as
to show a modified square profile.
Teeth- will be healthy and wide apart. A Scissors bite is preferred, but a moderately undershot jaw should not be faulted
providing the teeth are not visible when the mouth is closed.
Neck, Top line, Body
powerful, very muscular, slightly arched, and of medium length. The neck
gradually increases in circumference as it approaches the shoulder. Neck
moderately "dry" (not showing an excess of loose skin).
profile the topline should be straight, level, and firm, not swaybacked,
roached, or dropping off sharply behind the high point of the rump.
-wide, deep, rounded, and well let down between the forelegs, extending at
least to the elbow. Fore chest should be deep and well defined with the
breastbone extending in front of the foremost point of the shoulders. Ribs
well rounded. False ribs deep and well set back.
should be a reasonable, but not exaggerated, tuck-up.
Back- muscular, powerful, and straight. When viewed from the rear, there
should be a slight rounding over the rump.
wide and muscular.
-set on moderately high and reaching to the hocks or a little below.
Wide at the root, tapering to the end, hanging straight in repose,
forming a slight curve, but never over the back when the dog is in motion.
- moderately sloping, powerful and muscular, with no tendency to looseness. Degree of front angulation to match correct rear
Legs- straight, strong and set wide apart, heavy boned.
parallel to body.
- strong and bent only slightly.
- large, round, and compact with well arched toes. Black nails preferred.
The hindquarters should be broad,
wide and muscular.
thighs- well developed, leading to a strong hock joint.
joint- is moderately angulated matching the front.
legs -are wide apart and parallel when viewed from the rear.When the portion of the leg below the hock is correctly "set
back" and stands perpendicular to the ground, a plumb line dropped from
the rearmost point of the hindquarters will pass in front of the foot. This
rules out straight hocks, and since stifle angulation varies with hock
angulation, it also rules out insufficiently angulated stifles. Fault--Straight stifles.
Outer coat straight, coarse, and
of moderately short length. Undercoat should be dense, short, and close lying.
The coat should
not be so long as to produce "fringe" on the belly, tail, or hind
legs. Fault-Long or wavy coat.
Fawn, apricot, or brindle.
Brindle should have fawn or apricot as a background color, which should be
completely covered with very dark stripes. Muzzle, ears, and nose must be dark
in color, the blacker the better, with similar color tone around the eye orbits
and extending upward between them. A small patch of white on the chest is
permitted. Faults-The presence of excessive white coloring on the chest
or white coloring on any other part of the body. Also, the lack of dark pigment
on the mask, ears, or nose.
The mastiff will show a
combination of grandeur and good nature, courage and docility. Dignity, rather
than gaiety, is the Mastiff champion's correct demeanor.