The Neapolitan Mastiff is a southern Italian dog breed that was created for guarding duties. They are commonly called by their nickname Neo or Mastino. This impressive dog breed is rather large and is probably better suited for houses with back yards than for apartments. They can be a handful so they are not the best choice for new and inexperienced owners.
The Neapolitan Mastiff is usually a peaceful dog that likes nothing more than to hang around with their family and pack. Contrary to popular belief, they are not aggressive and will attack someone only if their family is threatened or in danger. They are more likely to try and sit on your lap and their massive size will make it hard for you to lift them off there.
They are an old dog breed whose ancestors are being dated back more than 3000 years. They are composed, steady, and as all great watchdogs, distrustful towards strangers. They can be a bit stubborn so training and socialization are required from a young age.
23,5-29,5 in (60-75 cm)
110-154 lb (50-70 kg)
Dog Breed Characteristics
Since this is a very old dog breed it is no wonder it is accepted by most of the major cynology associations in the world. The one we will be focusing on is the Federation Cynologique Internationale or the FCI. The FCI has a standard in place for this breed and it placed the famous Mastino in Group 2 (Pinscher and Schnauzer, Molossoid breeds, and Swiss Mountain- and Cattle Dogs), Section 2.1 (Molossoid breeds, Mastiff type). These dogs are not required to have a working trial.
The standard describes a required size for this breed and it is 25,5 - 29,5 in (65-75 cm) for the male dogs, and 23,5 - 26,5 in (60- 68 cm) for the female. Their weight should always be proportioned to their height and it should be 132 - 154 lbs (60 - 70 kg) for male Mastinos and 110 - 132 lbs (50 - 60 kg) for the females.
This breed was registered by the FCI on the 8th of March 1956.
The American Kennel Club also has a standard for this breed and it describes these dogs as being astounding and imposing with a bestial appearance. These dogs have a specific movement that is not showy but rather rolling or lumbering. The required size for these dogs according to this standard is 26 - 31 in (66 - 78 cm) for males and 24 - 29 in (61 - 74 cm) for the female dogs. We can see that Americans prefer larger Mastinos.
These dogs have been registered by the AKC in 2004.
Before you buy a puppy from a Neapolitan Mastiff breeder, make sure you have researched everything you can about this breed and made sure that this is a breed for you. They are quite large and can be a handful to raise and properly socialize.
If you decide to go for this breed, make sure that you buy your puppy from a registered and reputable breeder that is taking good care of their dogs. Ask the breeder as many questions as possible and a good breeder can tell you a lot about this breed and help you make an informed decision.
World Dog Finder team