Do You Know What You’re Getting Into?
You are looking to add another family member to your home. You came across the cutest picture of an English Mastiff, and thought, “Now that’s the kind of dog I’m talking about!” You are probably about to make a great decision, but there are some things you might want to know about this enormous breed before you take the plunge!
I want to tell you about my baby, Syrus. He is a 14-month-old monster of a dog and could quite possibly be the love of my life (shhh, don’t tell my husband)! I can’t help but love him to pieces, even though he drives me insane!
The Reason I Decide to Get an English Mastiff
I want to give you the backstory as to why I chose this breed. I acquired a puppy when I was 19, and as it turns out, she ended up being the best darn dog on the planet. Sasha was beautiful, black, and rather large; part English Mastiff and part Black Lab. The girl stole my heart the minute I laid eyes upon her.
She passed two years ago to cancer at ten years old, and I was heartbroken. I lost my best friend. Everyone suggested that I get another puppy, but I couldn’t. I just couldn’t do it. She was the most loyal, well-behaved, and gentle being I’ve ever known.
My Mom’s Advice
Finally, two years later, and still depressed, my mom put her foot down. She told me if I didn’t go pick out a puppy to love, she was going to do it for me. So, I went about looking at ads online and in the paper. I knew if it were up to my mom, I’d get some kind of miniature yapper (not for me)!
I knew I wanted the new baby to have the same gentle demeanor as my Sasha, and I wanted a big dog, one that I could snuggle and squeeze to death! So, after searching high and low, my husband and I found a lovely litter of English Mastiffs, about three hours west of us.
We packed the kids up and headed out, and they were so excited (me too)! We get to the place after hours of “Are we there yet?” and get out. To my surprise, colossal giants are running freely everywhere! To be honest, I was scared.
The kids get out of the truck, and they start running towards a pen full of puppies on the porch. Not one of those three monstrous beings batted an eyelash at my kids, thank God. They just checked the kids out and gave them a few well-meaning, slobbery kisses.
So finally, the owners of said giants come outside to greet us. They just laughed at our kids and opened the puppy pen. The puppies held inside were breathtaking, brindle, six-week-old babies, each the size of a miniature goat! I was in heaven!
I immediately zoned in on a pretty female and picked her up. She was so docile, and her face reminded me of my Sasha. “This is the one,” I thought. I snuggled her for a few minutes, turned to show my family, and realized that they were all playing with one of the males. He was the biggest of the bunch, and ornery from the looks of it too!
I took my hubby aside and said, “This is her, honey, this is my new baby.” I didn’t get the response I was hoping for, not at all. The kids and my husband let me know that they had also chosen, and it wasn’t the cutie I held in my arms. It was the humungous and rambunctious boy who was busy tugging rope with my son. This puppy is for the family, so long story short, I did not get my way!
We took that rotten pup home with us that very day. I held him in my lap the entire ride, and in doing, he stole my heart. I have not regretted him once to this very day.
That’s not to say that this giant of a dog hasn’t irked me quite a bit in the last year. To the contrary! I realized right away that I had my hands full with this one.
I held that boy in my lap for only a short while. Maybe a week. It didn’t take long to know that this cutie was going to grow at a ridiculously fast pace and eat me out of house and home. I would go to bed and wake up the next morning to realize he had grown two inches overnight. This is not an exaggeration.
The bigger Syrus got, the clumsier he became as well. He grew so fast that he didn’t have a chance to get used to his new body. He regularly knocked things off tables. Honestly, there have been times that he has taken out the table itself!
With English Mastiffs easily being one of the biggest breeds of dogs, it isn’t hard to understand why they are so awkward. Syrus will run across the kitchen floor, and his massive body weight will plunge him into the cabinets. He cannot stop himself, poor guy.
He does try to be careful, especially around the kids but he’s been known the throw his big body around when he’s roughhousing. He’s accidentally knocked the kids (and adults) over. There is a reason that the very first thing I taught him was that he was absolutely not to jump, ever. Imagine if this giant thought he was able to jump up when he got excited! Now, that would be cause for disaster!
My Syrus is a big, big baby. He’s as docile as my previous dog had ever been, and as loyal. He has the makings of actually being the smartest dog I’ve ever had (he’s still a puppy though). He listens to commands and understands me when I talk to him. At least, that’s the way I feel.
His big, lovely brown eyes speak volumes in every expression that he makes. He is so smart. His face is so wrinkly and irresistible, and his lips droop so that he continually looks sad. I can’t help myself but to be constantly loving on him, he is such a cutie!
If you’re looking for one of these colossal cuties to call your own, know there is a steep learning curve, for both the dog and your family. This breed is obviously impressive and won’t even have to bark to scare away a potential predator. You will have to have lots of space and some grace to raise one. In my opinion, though, you cannot go wrong.