Author Topic: Need help with new mastiff  (Read 7164 times)

Offline sjc

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Need help with new mastiff
« on: October 30, 2007, 02:32:51 pm »
Hi guys. I am about to get my first Mastiff coming up in a few days.

The dog is already 20 months old, which is older than I wanted but the family needs to get rid of him (he keeps getting out of their small fence) and I've been wanting a mastiff for along time.
I have an almost 4 year old daughter, and a 3 year old shitzu dog. I have a pretty good size yard with a nice high fence.

So, what I need help with is:

-I know mastiffs bond and are very protective of their family. When I go to see him (and very likely bring him home with me), is there anything I can do to make him trust me, and want to come with me? I mean other than my own instict to be very nice to him, should I bring a treat, or anything?

-Any insight on how the dog will handle being taking out of his home by a stranger and implanted into my home?

-How will the dog interact with my current dog? I understand mastiffs integrate nicely into existing familys, but this pooch is already 20 months old.

-What can I do to help the dog bond with me quickly?
-How long might it take for the dog to bond with my family and *forget* (can't think of a better word, i doubt he would actually ever forget them) the old family?
-Any opinions on a method to introduce the dog to it's new home and family?

Basically I'm almost already in love with this dog, from photos and talking to the owner, I just want to do whatever I can to make him comfortable and feel safe in my house, so he can make my family feel safe when I'm gone.

Offline pyr4me

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2007, 04:34:32 pm »
I don't know anything about mastiffs specifically, but I have adopted two dogs who were 2 years old at the time of adoption. One of the biggest things that helped with developing the bond between me and my dogs has been to go to positive training classes with them. It helped both the dogs and myself with knowing who was in charge, who to listen to, and to trust me as the "leader." 

Good luck with your new addition!

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Offline kathryn

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2007, 05:39:41 pm »
Razor came to the house at around 1 1/2yo and he's been here for a couple of months now.  I've lost track of time.  Anyway, I think giving him some special alone time with us as opposed to him always having to share for attention with the rest of the pack has helped.  Also, some obedience lessons and lots of love and understanding.  He's done really well and the honeymoon period is wearing off so he's getting into a lot more trouble by testing boundaries but it's still good.
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Offline sjc

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2007, 12:06:48 pm »
Thanks for all the advice guys. I'm not in an area where I can go to obedience classes, so I don't have that option, but I'm excited to get him and hoping everything is very smooth when I get to meet him.

I'll be in the town for 2 nights, I wonder if it would be best for me to go and meet him and spend a bit of time with him the first night, and take him home the second night, or would I be better off just picking him up when I'm ready to leave the city?

Offline Nina

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2007, 02:47:50 pm »
I find the best thing to do to bond with a dog is to go on a long walk with the dog. Do this before you even bring the dog into your home. (I do this will all my fosters. Then I bring out my dog and introduce them in a neutral territory. Once they are comfortable with each other I bring them in the home. This will help with sorting the pack and preventing fights ect. You will most likely get a few tiffs with your two but introducing them outside of the home will help with this, that is just from my experience.

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Offline pam craig

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #5 on: November 01, 2007, 11:25:30 am »
I drove from Texas to Ky to pick up a 225 pound neo mastiff.  The only thing I needed was the largest rawhide bone they make.  He would have followed me anywhere.  I am a small woman and this moose seemed to have realized that.  He was very gentle and bonded with me immediately.  Loved him so much that I went and got an english mastiff.  I have to say, Personally, I think these are the most perfect dog ever created.

Offline mynameislola

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2007, 06:32:01 pm »
Is this your first big dog?  As the Mama to a Newfie, two Italian Mastiffs and a Chihuahua, I am curious what you plan to do to keep your Shih Tzu from getting squashed. 

My Chihuahua has a heating pad, doghouse, bed, and too many toys inside one of the Mastiff-sized wire crates.  Around all that is a portable fence with bracing to keep Zita from pushing it over.  The humans' part of the house has five dog gates. 

Sparky Chihuahua, when he's not being carried or walked around the other dogs while he is in his harness and leash, is kept in his doggie palace in an area of the house the big dogs don't go in very much.  He has a huge window to look out of and find things to bark at.  Yesterday I put the rat's cage next to him for entertainment.

I'd get your Mastiff the first day so you have more time to get used to the dog before you leave the area. 

Have you ever been dragged by a big dog?  If you don't want to drop the leash, try to keep your feet under you and slide like you are skiing.  Then try to get the leash to wrap around something as you go by.  Wear sturdy clothes, nothing with buttons, and boots.

I could write an essay about how I learned that...  if there hadn't been a mailbox bolted to the sidewalk about 10 feet into it, I think that dog would still be running.  All it took was a car backfiring.

Training big dogs is my favorite.

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     Cody Newfoundland
     Wally Italian Mastiff
     Zita Italian Mastiff
     Sparky Chihuahua

Offline charliesmom

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Re: Need help with new mastiff
« Reply #7 on: November 15, 2007, 11:45:38 am »
Charlie (English Mastiff) was 14 months when he came to live with us. I had to go and pick him up. I spent about a hour with him at his old home. He went straight to the car with me, no problem. His old owner gave me all of his toys and about a week worth of his food (make sure you find out what they are feeding him, you know the dog food rule, change over slowly). I was a little afraid to introduce him to my cat, but he learned fast not to mess with him. Charlie just turned 2 this month. He is a 180# lap dog. I think this breed bonds fast with the people that show them love and attention. Also,the suggestion to introduce the dogs in a neutral place is a great idea! If you are worried about the pulling (dragging) on the leash, I would suggest the easy walk harness. It's worked wonders for us.