Image Credit: Claudio Gennari/Flickr
If you've ever seen a mastiff, you'll agree that there is one word that can properly size up its appearance: powerful. No kidding, this dog is huge — not as tall as a Great Dane, but probably twice as thick at between 2 and 3 feet tall with a weight of between 130 and 220 pounds.
Fittingly, these dogs make excellent guard dogs. Though the mastiff seems beast-like, it is surprisingly affectionate, gentle and extremely loyal. Its devotion to its owners and patience with children have secured its popularity for years, though it must be properly socialized to get along well with children and other pets and it's best if you don't have them around very small children or adults who are frail, as they can easily knock them over, causing serious injuries. Their life span is generally between six and 10 years, but some have lived as long as 18 years.
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