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Mastador: The Loyal and Affectionate Mastiff-Labrador Mix - PawSafe

Mastador: The Loyal and Affectionate Mastiff-Labrador Mix

Photo of Tamsin De La Harpe

Written by Tamsin De La Harpe

Mastador dog breed

The Mastador is an upcoming mix known for its large size, friendly personality, and loyalty to its family. These crossbreeds mix the imposing presence of a Mastiff and the warm and friendly nature of a Labrador for a great family dog.

While Mastadors can make excellent family pets, they do require proper socialization and training to ensure they are well-behaved around children and other animals. They also need maintenance with quality shampoos, doggy colognes, and cleaning wipes.

Let’s delve into all about this powerful yet charming canine, from temperament and care to maintenance. We have consulted expert Mastador sources for a complete breed profile and guide.

Mastadors are known for their intelligence, trainability, and affectionate nature. They make great family pets and are excellent with children. They are also known for their protective instincts and make great guard dogs.

Mastadors are great for people who prefer and can manage larger canines. Other mixes in the same gentle giant category include the Great Pyredoodes, Newfypoos, Giant Schnoodles, and Bernedoodes.

Meet Maverick the Black Mastador:

Overall, Mastadors are a unique and lovable breed that make great companions for those who can handle their large size and exercise needs.

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History of the Mastador Breed

History of the English Mastiff

The English Mastiff is an ancient breed that has been around for thousands of years, descending from an ancient breed known as Molossus. Julias Caesar took note of this breed in 55 BC during the British invasion, and he couldn’t help but take them home. In Rome, they fought alongside soldiers, fought in colosseums, and battled wild beasts.

In medieval England, these dogs also took the spotlight as nighttime protectors, big game hunters. They even battled against the French in 1415 at the Battle of Agincourt.

The breed nearly went extinct during World War II, with only 14 surviving, but was saved by a group of dedicated breeders who worked to revive the breed. Today, the English Mastiff is a popular family pet and guard dog.

History of the Labrador

The Labrador is a breed of dog that originated in Newfoundland, Canada. They were originally bred as working dogs to help fishermen retrieve fish that had fallen off their lines. The breed was later brought to England, where it was developed into the Labrador Retriever we know today. 

The Mastador is a mixed breed that is a cross between the English Mastiff and the Labrador Retriever. The breed was first developed in the United States in the 1990s. Mastadors are known for their size, strength, and loyalty. They make excellent family pets and guard dogs.

Physical Characteristics of a Mastador

What Does the Mastiff Labrador Mix Look Like?

Mastadors have a sturdy and robust build, inheriting the solid bone structure of Mastiffs. Their bodies are well-muscled, and their chest is broad and deep. They are much larger than Labs but smaller than Mastiffs.

The Mastador usually has a broad head with a short snout, and their body is muscular and sturdy. They have large, droopy flews, but not as large as a Mastiff’s. Because of their large flews (loose skin on the mouth), Mastadors drool significantly. Their eyes are brown and hazel, and their ears are pendant-shaped, and they drop down.

How Big Does A Mastador Get?

Mastadors weigh between 70 to 160 pounds (32 to 73 kg) or more and stand around 24 to 30 inches (61 to 76 cm) tall at the shoulder.

Coat and Colors

The Mastador’s coat is usually short, dense, and easy to maintain. They shed moderately year-round and require regular brushing to keep their coat healthy. 

Mastadors come in various colors, including:

  • Black;
  • Fawn;
  • Yellow;
  • Chocolate;
  • Brindle; and
  • Some Mastadors may have a white patch on their chest or feet.

Mastador Temperament and Personality Traits

The Mastiff-Labrador mix, commonly known as the Mastador, is a designer breed resulting from crossing a purebred Mastiff with a purebred Labrador Retriever. The mix aims to combine the best qualities of both parent breeds, and as such, the Mastador usually exhibits a blend of personalities and temperaments. However, it’s important to remember that individual dogs can vary, and not all Mastadors will have the same characteristics, such as loving water and food. 

Personality

  1. Affectionate: Both Mastiffs and Labradors are known for their affectionate nature, and this trait typically carries over into the Mastador. They usually form strong bonds with their families and can be very loyal.
  2. Intelligent: Labradors are renowned for their intelligence, and Mastiffs are no slouches either. The Mastador is generally an intelligent dog, which makes training easier compared to some other breeds.
  3. Protective: The Mastiff lineage brings a natural guarding instinct to the Mastador. While they are usually friendly and approachable, they can become protective if they sense their family is in danger.

Temperament

  1. Social: Thanks to the Labrador parentage, Mastadors often enjoy social interactions, whether it’s with humans or other animals. However, early socialization is crucial to ensure that they are well-rounded and comfortable in different settings.
  2. Calm and Even-Tempered: The Mastiff is known for its calm and dignified demeanor, traits that often translate to a more laid-back temperament in the Mastador. This makes them excellent companions for families, even those with children.
  3. Eager to Please: The Labrador’s eagerness to please often shows up in the Mastador mix, making them responsive to positive reinforcement techniques during training.
  4. Adaptable: Generally, Mastadors are adaptable dogs who can thrive in various living conditions, whether it’s a house with a big yard or a smaller apartment, as long as they get sufficient exercise.
  5. Exercise Needs: Despite their sometimes hefty size, Mastadors do need regular exercise to keep them healthy and happy. However, their exercise requirements are usually moderate, combining the Labrador’s enthusiasm for play with the Mastiff’s more laid-back attitude.
  6. Sensitivity: Some Mastadors may inherit the Mastiff’s sensitivity to the emotional climate of the home, meaning they pick up on tension or stress and can become stressed themselves if not handled properly.

It’s essential to consider that these are general traits and individual Mastadors may differ. A well-socialized and well-trained Mastador can be an excellent family companion, combining the Labrador’s friendliness with the Mastiff’s protective nature.

Is the Mastador Aggressive?

Mastadors are generally not aggressive dogs. However, like any dog, they can become aggressive if they are not properly socialized or trained. It is important to socialize your Mastador from a young age and provide them with proper training to prevent any aggressive behavior.

Health and Lifespan of a Mastador

Common Health Issues

Mastadors are not the healthiest breed due to the Mastiff that has one of the shortest lifespans possible. Some of the most common health issues that Mastadors may experience include:

  • Hip (elbow) dysplasia: Both Mastiffs and Labrador Retrievers are known to be susceptible to hip dysplasia, a condition where the hip joint doesn’t fit properly into the socket. 
  • Bloat / GDV (Gastric Dilation and Volvulus refers to the stomach twisting due to the filling of air.
  • Heart issues like dilated cardiomyopathy (enlarged heart), Atrial fibrillation (fast, irregular heart), and Pulmonic stenosis (narrowing of the pulmonary valve).
  • Cancer such as lymphoma and osteosarcoma: Studies show that 47% of Mastiff deaths are cancer-related.
  • Ear infections: Both parent breeds have large, droopy ears that may trap dirt, causing infection. Research shows that 24% of chocolate labs suffer from ear infections. They may pass this on to the offspring. 
  • Eye anomalies: These dogs can suffer from eye issues like glaucoma, cataracts, cherry eye, dye eye, and conjunctivitis.
  • Joint Problems: Besides hip and elbow dysplasia, joint issues like arthritis can develop due to the breed’s size and age.
  • Thyroid issues like hypothyroidism from the Labrador’s side.
  • Neurological problems like epilepsy. 
  • Respiratory Issues: Because of their brachycephalic (short-muzzled) traits from the Mastiff side, Mastadors might experience breathing difficulties, especially in hot or humid conditions. However, the Lab’s longer muzzle reduces this risk.
  • Moderate issues like allergies, stomach sensitivity, and  dental issues.

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How Long Does the Mastador Live?

Mastadors have a lifespan of around 10 to 12 years. This is a relatively long lifespan for a large breed dog, and it is important to take proper care of your Mastador to ensure that they live a long and healthy life. Regular exercise, a healthy diet, and routine veterinary checkups can help ensure your Mastador lives a long and happy life.

Caring for a Mastador

Dietary Needs

Mastadors are large dogs requiring a balanced and nutritious diet to maintain health. As with any dog, it is important to provide them with a diet high in protein (30%) and a healthy balance of vitamins, carbs, and minerals.

Choosing a high-quality dog food appropriate for your Mastador’s age, weight, and activity level is important. Puppies must eat puppy food to prevent them from growing too fast and developing orthopedic issues down the line.

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Exercise Requirements

Mastadors are active dogs that require plenty of exercise to stay healthy and happy for about 1 hour every day. They enjoy playing fetch, going for walks, and swimming. It is important to provide your Mastador with regular exercise to prevent obesity and other health problems.

Importance of Low-Impact Activities For Mastiff Lab Mixes:

  1. Joint Protection: High-impact exercises can exacerbate the risk of joint issues, particularly in a breed prone to such problems. Low-impact activities help maintain physical fitness without placing undue stress on the joints.
  2. Cardiovascular Health: Intense exercise could put unnecessary strain on the heart, especially for breeds prone to DCM. Low-impact activities allow the dog to get exercise without causing cardiovascular stress.

Suggested Low-Impact Exercises:

  1. Swimming: This is an excellent exercise that allows for full-body movement without the hard impact that comes from running or jumping. It’s good for both cardiovascular health and joint mobility.
  2. Walking: A simple but effective low-impact exercise, walking allows you to control the pace to suit your dog’s needs. Avoiding rough terrains and opting for flat, smooth surfaces can further minimize joint strain.
  3. Tug-of-War: Played gently, this game can provide good mental and physical stimulation without high impact. Just make sure it doesn’t become too intense or competitive.
  4. Fetch on Soft Ground: If your dog enjoys fetch, try playing on soft ground like grass or sand to reduce the impact when they land.
  5. Indoor Obstacle Courses: Creating a simple obstacle course inside can allow for some exercise without high jumping or quick turns that could strain the joints.

Supplementing your Mastador’s diet with joint supplements can also be beneficial for their joint health. Products like Hip & Joint Mobility Soft Chews can be a good addition to their routine, as they are designed to support joint function and mobility.

Mastadors are also intelligent dogs that enjoy mental stimulation. Consider providing your Mastador with puzzle toys, training sessions, and other activities that challenge their mind.

Grooming Tips

Mastadors have a short, dense coat that requires minimal grooming. However, they do shed moderately throughout the year, so regular brushing can help to remove loose hair and prevent matting.

  • You should also trim your Mastador’s nails regularly to prevent them from becoming too long and causing discomfort.
  • Additionally, you should clean your Mastador’s ears with ear wipes twice a month to prevent infections.
  • Brush their teeth twice weekly to remove plaque and use dental washes and chews on some remaining days.
  • You may also need drying towels available if your Mastador drools a lot.
  • Bathe them monthly with a mild shampoo.

Training a Mastador

Mastadors are massive dogs, and nothing is worse than having a big, untrained dog. Because of this, owners and potential owners must invest time, and sometimes money, to ensure their dogs are well-trained.

Mastadors are intelligent dogs that are eager to please their owners. However, they can be stubborn at times, especially if they sense that their owners are not confident or consistent in their training. 

Therefore, it is important to start obedience training as early as possible and to be patient and consistent throughout the process. Socialization is yet another essential canine training necessity to coexist with other animals and people.

One effective way to train a Mastador is through positive reinforcement. This involves rewarding good behavior with treats, praise, or playtime and ignoring or redirecting bad behavior. Another tip is to start training early when their brains are still malleable.

Mastador as a Family Pet: Suitability with Kids & Other Animals

Mastadors are great with kids because of their gentle, well-balanced temperaments. However, they shouldn’t be left unsupervised around kids because they can accidentally hurt them due to their large sizes.

However, it is important to note that Mastadors may have same-sex aggression, which means they may not get along well with other dogs of the same sex. Therefore, proper socialization and training are crucial to ensure they get along well with other animals.

Adopting a Mastador

Finding a Breeder

When looking for a Mastador breeder, it’s important to do thorough research to ensure you get a healthy and well-bred dog. A good place to start is by checking with the American Kennel Club (AKC) or the Mastador Club of America for a list of reputable breeders in your area.

It’s also recommended to visit the breeder in person to see the dogs’ living conditions and to meet the puppy’s parents if possible. This will give you a good idea of the temperament and health of the dog you are considering adopting.

Adoption Process

Once you have found a breeder you are comfortable with, the adoption process can begin. The breeder will likely have an application process that includes questions about your living situation, experience with dogs, and your reasons for wanting a Mastador.

If approved, the breeder may require a deposit to hold a puppy for you until it is ready to be taken home. It’s important to ask about the puppy’s health and vaccination records and any potential genetic health issues that may be common in the breed.

Before bringing your Mastador home, it’s important to have all necessary supplies, such as food, bowls, a leash, and a crate. It’s also recommended to schedule a visit with a veterinarian to ensure your new puppy is healthy and up-to-date on vaccinations.

Overall, adopting a Mastador can be a rewarding experience for the right family. With proper research and preparation, you can find a healthy and well-adjusted dog that will bring joy to your home for years to come.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How much does a Mastador puppy cost?

The cost of a Mastador puppy can vary significantly depending on several factors, including the breeder’s reputation, location, the lineage of the parent dogs, and what medical procedures or tests have been done. Prices for Mastador puppies could range from around $700 to $2,000 or even more for puppies from breeders specializing in this particular mix and offering extensive health guarantees or champion lineages.

What is the average lifespan of a Mastador?

The average lifespan of a Mastador is between 10 to 12 years. However, with proper care and nutrition, some Mastadors have been known to live up to 15 years.

What is the typical size of a Mastador dog?

Mastadors are typically large dogs, with an average height of 30 inches and a weight of 100 to 160 pounds. They are a crossbreed between a Mastiff and a Labrador Retriever.

What is the temperament of a Mastador?

Mastadors are known for their friendly, loyal, and affectionate nature. They are generally good with children and make great family pets. They are also intelligent and easy to train.

What is the average weight of a Mastador?

The average weight of a Mastador is between 100 to 160 pounds. However, the weight can vary depending on the size of the parents and the individual dog.

What were Mastadors originally bred for?

Mastadors were originally bred as working dogs to assist in hunting and retrieving game. They were also used as guard dogs due to their size and protective nature.

Is a Mastador considered a giant breed?

Yes, Mastadors are considered a giant breed due to their size and weight.

Does the Mastador shed?

Yes, Mastadors do shed. They have a short, dense coat that requires regular brushing to minimize shedding.

Is the Mastador hypoallergenic?

No, Mastadors are not hypoallergenic. They shed and produce dander, which can trigger allergies in some people.

Final Thoughts

The Mastador is an excellent breed for families looking for a loyal and affectionate companion. They are intelligent, easy to train, and have a gentle disposition. They are also great with children and get along well with other pets. One important thing to remember is that Mastadors require a lot of exercise and mental stimulation. They’ll need loads of play, mental stimulation, and training.

Meet Your Experts

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Tamsin De La Harpe

Author

Tamsin de la Harpe has nearly two decades of experience with dogs in rescue, training, and behavior modification with fearful and aggressive dogs. She has worked closely with veterinarians and various kennels, building up extensive medical knowledge and an understanding of canine health and physiology. She also spent two years in the animal sciences as a canine nutrition researcher, focusing on longevity and holistic healthcare for our four-legged companions. Tamsin currently keeps a busy homestead with an assortment of rescue dogs and three Bullmastiffs.

Tamsin de la Harpe has nearly two decades of experience with dogs in rescue, training, and behavior modification with fearful and aggressive dogs. She has worked closely with veterinarians and various kennels, building up extensive medical knowledge and an understanding of canine health and physiology. She also spent two years in the animal sciences as a canine nutrition researcher, focusing on longevity and holistic healthcare for our four-legged companions. Tamsin currently keeps a busy homestead with an assortment of rescue dogs and three Bullmastiffs.