There is so much to learn about mastiffs. We have not even begun to learn all there is to know. But regardless of where and who you get your mastiff from, please keep some things in mind.
THE BREED - Do your research and make sure this is the breed for you! These are big dogs that love to be with their families. Yep, they slobber and drool! Yep, they shed (ALOT)! Yep, they eat a lot! Yep, they are expensive! Did I mention that they slobber? They think it is wonderful to come and cuddle after they take a long drink! Cleaning your windows will now take much longer, that stuff is like glue! Believe it or not, at some point, you will find slingers on your ceiling! They should not ride in the back of a pick-up, you will need lots of space in your vehicle! These are family dogs. They should not be isolated from their family. You will never know the true nature of a mastiff if it is not allowed to be part of your family. They should never have to live outside, they are house dogs. If after all of that, you still think this is the breed for you, be ready for unconditional love, lots of cuddling and a shadow wherever you go. They are very loyal to their family!
HEALTH - There is so much regarding mastiffs and health. A reputable breeder should do as much health testing as possible. There are many tools out there available for breeders, look for those breeders that use those. Do your research! You will avoid a lot of heartache and money, if every step has been taken to keep these guys healthy. There is no guarantee but it is much better to know the effort has been made! These dogs are too special and noble to burdened with avoidable pain.
TEMPERAMENT - Temperament should be in the same category of health. Mastiffs should have good temperaments! Good mastiff owners take the time to socialize their mastiffs as much as possible. This can't be stressed enough, SOCIALIZE!! These dogs are guardians by nature, that is not an instinct you should encourage. Your dog should be a great ambassador to the breed's temperament. Take the time to know the temperaments behind your dogs and in their pedigrees.
PURITY - Mastiffs should NEVER be bred with any other breed! Too many people are creating designer breeds at the expense of these wonderful dogs. Taking two different breeds and combining them is a huge mistake. Combining two breeds is combining two totally different sets of health issues, temperaments, and structures. Unfortunately what began as a horrible mistake, has become a trend. These trends are ruining our breed, dying early from health problems, and filling up shelters that are already too full. If you want a mixed breed dog, the shelter needs your help. If you want a purebred dog, pick a breed and stick with it. Gladiators are not a breed. American Mastiffs are not a breed. There are many excuses out there for these dogs but they are nothing but a lie people are using to make a buck. These dogs are suffering at the hands of people who care nothing about the breed.