Neopolitan Mastiff

Neopolitan Mastiff At-a-Glance

The Neapolitan Mastiff is an ancient breed originating from Italy. Bred to be guard dogs and defenders, this awesome and giant Mastiff descends from the traditional guard dogs of central Italy. Despite their imposing size and massive strength, they have a calm and affectionate nature. At the same time, their fearless and protective attitude make them loyal and powerful guard dogs.

Weight (pounds)
Male: 150-210
Female: 110-140
Height (inches)
Male: 26-31
Female: 24-29
Lifespan (years)

Dog Breed Group

Characteristics Ratings

We rate 19 characteristics for each breed, divided into three categories:
Highest Rated – Characteristics for which this breed is rated 4 or 5 stars (on a 5 star scale).
Neutral Rated – Characteristics that rated 3 stars.
Lowest Rated – Characteristics that rated only 1 or 2 stars.

Highest Rated

  • Good Family Dog
  • Kid Friendly
  • Protective Nature
  • Low Amount of Barking

Neutral Rated

  • Good With Other Dogs
  • Low Shedding
  • Friendly to Strangers
  • Handles Change Easily
  • Easy to Train
  • High Intelligence

Lowest Rated

  • Low Drooling
  • Likes to Play
  • High Energy Level
  • Suitable for Small Yards/Apartments
  • Good for Novice Owners
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone
  • Tolerates Cold Climate
  • Tolerates Hot Climate
  • Good General Health

General Overview

Neapolitan Mastiffs are another one of the “gentle giants” dog breeds. They are affectionate, gentle, and loving toward their family members, making them a great choice for those looking for a wonderful family dog.

They are also fantastic with children, displaying patience and a gentle demeanor. Like with all large and giant dog breeds, supervision is necessary around small children to prevent accidental injuries due to their massive size.

With strangers, Neapolitan Mastiffs tend to be wary, which makes them excellent guard dogs. They are also fearless and love their families unconditionally. This means they are very protective and will guard their home and family from intruders at all costs. But their size and intimidating appearance are usually more than enough to scare away anyone with bad intentions.

With a size that can exceed 200 pounds, this is not a dog you want to mess with!

When it comes to socializing with other dogs and pets, Neopolitans can do well with proper training and socialization.

From a maintenance perspective, Neapolitan Mastiffs are not heavy shedders but are known for drooling (a trait common to other Mastiff breeds). Most owners will keep a towel handy to deal with this.

Like many breeds, Neapolitan Mastiffs can experience separation anxiety if left alone for long periods, and that anxiety can turn into destructive behavior. And giant breeds can cause a lot of destruction!

Although large and powerful, Neopolitan Mastiffs have only a medium level of energy. They enjoy lounging around their family members but do require at least a daily walk and some playtime.

This means that houses with small yards are usually sufficient (so long as they are fenced and the fence is strong!). However, these are large dogs and need some space to move around, so apartments are not a good choice.

We give Neapolitan Mastiffs a “medium” on the intelligence scale. In regards to trainability, there are a bit stubborn and strong-willed and are not as eager to please as some breeds. As a result, patience and persistence are needed and they are not a particularly good choice for first-time dog owners.

As with many of the giant breeds, Neopolitan Mastiffs are prone to some health issues. Hip and elbow dysplasia are the most common ones, followed by various heart conditions. Also, the loose, wrinkled skin on their face requires special attention to avoid infections.

Regular heart assessments, a balanced diet, proper exercise, and weight control will help to minimize these health risks.

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