Irish Mastiff – Everything You Need To Know

The Irish Mastiff is a large breed – a mix of the Irish Wolfhound and the English Mastiff. Globally, both the parent breeds are recognized as giant dog breeds. When they stand on their hind legs, they weigh more than 100 pounds, resembling an adult human. Apart from their massive stature, Irish Mastiffs are incredibly gentle, sweet dogs, and they are laid back enough to adapt to apartment living. Also, these breeds are pretty rare, so you may never have encountered one before.

Irish Mastiffs are easier to train, making them suitable for first-time dog owners. They are slightly more active too. Irish Mastiff’s parents are record-holders for canine extremes. Irish is the tallest, and English is the largest canine breed in the world. But whether you are team Irish or English, keep in mind that you will be getting an incredibly unique, wonderful family pet.

Three Known Facts About Irish Mastiffs

  • Irish Mastiffs Need a Wide Berth: You don’t necessarily require a lavish yard and a mansion to own this breed. But make sure to have enough space for them to maneuver comfortably.
  • Irish Mastiff’s Appearance Can Differ Widely from Dog to Dog: Some puppies have the shaggy, fuzzy appearance of an Irish, whereas others have Mastiff’s short bristly coat. Some breeds have Mastiff’s trademark wrinkles on their face, while others don’t. It all relies on which parent they inherit more, and it differs from dog to dog. The good news is that these canines tend to be adorable regardless of which parent they favor.
  • Irish Mastiffs Consider Themselves the Smallest Dogs: After spending some time with Irish Mastiffs, you will discover that they adore being close to you, like a lapdog. The possibility of a 100-pound curling up in your lap may sound daunting.

Male vs. Female

Male Irish Mastiffs can grow a tad bigger than females, but both are huge. Male and female Irish Mastiffs are pretty similar when it comes to temperament. You may notice differences between the two genders, but only if compared side by side; the distinctions are not unique when just dealing with a single dog. So, if you are planning about getting an Irish Mastiff, never bother about the male vs. female debate.

Irish Mastiff Mix Pros and Cons

Active CompanionsNeeds more socialization 
Energetic and playfulHave separation anxiety
Protective dogsMight be mischievous if not trained properly

Irish Mastiff Mix Basic Information

  • Name: Irish Mastiff
  • Height: Male 31 – 36 inches; Female 29 – 34 inches 
  • Weight: Male 120 – 180 pounds; Female 105 – 165 inches
  • Size: Medium
  • Coat: Fluffy, double coat
  • Color: Blue, silver, red, brown, gray, black, cream, brindle 
  • Group: Mixed breed
  • Activities: Companion dogs, guard dogs
  • Barking Level: Occasionally
  • Shedding Level: Moderate
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Energy: High
  • Litter Size: 5 – 12 puppies 
  • Life Span: 9 – 12 years 
  • Breed Recognition: ACHC – American Canine Hybrid Club, DDKC – Designer Dogs Kennel Club, DRA – Dog Registry of America, Inc., IDCR – International Designer Canine Registry

Irish Wolfhound vs. English Mastiff: A Comparison

FeaturesIrish WolfhoundEnglish Mastiff

Fawn Mastiff
OriginIreland  England 
Height31 to 34 inches  27 to 32 inches 
Weight105 to 120 pounds  120 to 220 Pounds 
SizeLarge  Medium 
GroupHound dogs  Working dogs
Family-friendlyHigh  High 
Kid-friendlyHigh  High 
Pet-friendlyMedium  Low 
Barking levelMedium  Low 
Shedding levelMedium  Medium 
HypoallergenicNo  No 
Grooming needsMedium  Low to medium
Overall healthMedium to High  Medium to high 
EnergyMedium  Medium 
Exercise needsHigh  Medium 
TrainabilityMedium  Medium 
ActivitiesAgility, Herding, Conformation, Obedience, Rally, Tracking   Transportation 
Complications in breedingNo  No 
Litter size3 to 4 puppies  4 to 6 Puppies 
Life span6 to 10 years  6 to 10 Years 
Other namesCu’ FaoilOld English Mastiff

Irish Mastiff Mix Personality

The Irish Mastiff is a large breed, both in girth and height. They generally stand between 2-3 feet high at the shoulder and weigh over a hundred pounds. Little Irish Mastiffs are adorable and quite clumsy, and these pups need quite a time to figure out how their long legs work (to be honest, this is a skill they never fully master).

Irish Mastiffs are known for the following personalities: 

  • Affectionate
  • Gentle and easy-going
  • Smartness
  • Playful
  • Intelligent
  • Independent
  • People-pleasing

Irish Mastiffs will have round or almond-shaped dark brown eyes, upright ears, long tail, thick and downy undercoats guarded by a layer of weatherproof fur that can be short, coarse, straight, or rough and wiry. They come in various colors, including brown, grey, white, tan, or black.

Despite their massive size, Irish Mastiffs are very loving, friendly, affectionate, and playful with children and adults. However, make sure not to leave them unsupervised around kids to avoid any unfavorable incident caused by their giant bodies. They are brilliant, curious, clever, intuitive, and excited to please their human family. You can efficiently teach them commands or tricks and use this time and exercise as a bonding activity. 

Friendliness Overview

Affection levelHigh

Adaptability Overview

Good for apartment livingMedium to high
Good for new ownersMedium to high
Sensitivity levelMedium
Tolerates being aloneLow
Cold toleranceHigh
Heat toleranceMedium

Irish Mastiff Mix Temperament

The Irish Mastiff is a loyal, docile, loving dog who considers themselves as lap dogs. They make an ideal family dog and adore children. They are not guarding breeds, but their majestic size is sufficient to deter intruders.

However, Irish Mastiff’s affection for humans does make them a little prone to separation anxiety or depression. In addition, they can be a bit territorial if not socialized properly. So, puppy classes to kickstart their training and interaction with other pets are highly recommended.

Irish Wolfhounds have a high prey drive, which often gets passed on to Irish Mastiffs. In addition, because of their sheer size, accidentally, they are capable of squashing kids. Therefore, early socialization and proper training are also recommended for your Irish Mastiff.

Irish Mastiff Mix Training 

Irish Wolfhound and English Mastiff mix pups adore to please their owners, but they also have an independent characteristic, making them hard to train. Irish Mastiff does not prefer consuming time alone as an actual pack dog. They quickly get bored and think of different ways to entertain themselves. 

Irish Mastiffs are intelligent dogs. Yet, they should be trained with patience and determination. They need solid and consistent training with positive enhancements. Being a sensitive dog, you must avoid yelling, harsh treatment, and punishments, likely making them more stubborn. Here are some of the training exercises that you need to do with your Irish Mastiffs:

Trainability Overview

Easy to trainMedium
Mouthiness tendenciesMedium
Prey driveMedium to high
Barking and Howling tendenciesMedium
Wanderlust tendenciesMedium

Irish Mastiff Mix Exercise Needs

Irish Mastiff is a laid-back breed that needs at least 30 to 60 minutes of daily activity to maintain this hybrid in peak condition. They should avoid intense training like jogging because of their large body. Instead of that, take them on long walks, and they are satisfied watching Netflix on the couch with you.

Exercising your Irish Mastiff should not hinder you or your dog. You can fulfil their daily exercise requirements by:

  • Teaching new tricks
  • Walking
  • Tracking
  • Carting activities
  • Playing with puzzle toys
  • Playing tug of war
  • Hide-and-seek
  • Agility training
  • Obedience training
  • Giving them a safe area to play and run

Exercise Overview

Energy levelLow to medium
Exercise needsMedium
Potential for playfulnessMedium

Irish Mastiff Mix Grooming

Irish Mastiff has a short, simple coat that makes grooming quite effortless. Irish Mastiff’s grooming requirements are as follows:

  • Regular brushing with a slicker, soft bristle, or curry comb is needed.
  • Bathe whenever it’s essential. Regular bathing removes their coat’s natural oils
  • Brush their teeth daily to eliminate bacteria and tartar build-up.
  • Trim their nails every few weeks to avoid cracking, splitting, and discomfort. 
  • Ears should smell good with no unusual quantity of wax.

Grooming Overview

Easy to groomMedium
Drooling tendencyLow
Shedding amountMedium

Irish Mastiff Mix Health

Irish Mastiff is generally a healthy breed, but some diseases may affect this crossbred. So, if you own or are planning to get an Irish Mastiff puppy, you need to be aware of its health concerns.

Major Concerns 

  • Hip And Elbow Dysplasia 
  • Bloat 
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Heart Conditions

Minor Concerns 

  • Osteosarcoma
  • Wobblers Syndrome 
  • Eye Diseases and Disorders

Occasional Diagnoses

  • Hypothyroidism 
  • Urolithiasis 
  • Portosystemic Shunts

Occasional Tests 

  • Eye Examination 
  • Biopsy 
  • X-ray imaging 
  • Electrocardiogram

Health Overview

General healthMedium
Weight gain possibilitiesMedium

Major Health Concerns

Elbow Dysplasia: A progressive disorder in Irish Mastiffs that causes a developmental malformation of the elbows. Affected dogs exhibit forelimb lameness and pain.

Hip Dysplasia: A degenerative condition caused by deformity of the hip that occurs during Irish Mastiff’s growth. They exhibit lameness, pain, and limping on one or both rear legs.

Heart Disease: This condition may create irregular heart rhythm and heart murmurs. Doctors can diagnose this disease through an ECG or an X-ray. 

Bloat: Bloat happens if the dog’s belly is filled with gas or air due to pressure. When they cannot get rid of this excessive air, they will fall in blood pressure and go into shock. Symptoms include excessive drooling, retching without vomiting, restlessness, depression, swollen abdomen, lethargy, and weakness with a rapid heart rate. 

Progressive Retinal Atrophy: A degenerative eye condition causing blindness from the loss of photoreceptors at the eye back. Canines with this condition can survive for several years since they have other senses to equalize.  

Osteosarcoma: An abnormal cell production leading to the breakdown of bones in canines. They are general in large breed dogs. Symptoms include lethargy, loss of appetite, lameness, swelling, and reluctance to play or walk. 

Wobbler Syndrome: An inherent disease that causes spinal cord contraction or malformation in the canal.

Hypothyroidism: An Irish Mastiff with this condition delivers low thyroid hormones. This disorder is treatable with proper medication and diet.

Eye Defects: Eye defects are severe and should not be understated or overlooked. Eye problems include corneal dystrophy, cataracts, and progressive retinal atrophy.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy: Degeneration of the heart muscle is referred to as cardiomyopathy. The muscle, especially the thick muscular membrane of the left ventricle, becomes thin. These thin membranes expand because of the blood pressure inside the heart, which leads to a much bigger heart. Dilated cardiomyopathy is the medical term for this ailment (DCM). 

Irish Mastiff Mix Diet and Nutrition 

Irish Mastiff needs a protein-dense and nutritious, preferably dry or wet large to giant-sized food in moderation. This controls rapid bone growth and supports their joints as they develop. In addition, both the parent breeds are at risk of bloat or gastric torsion. So, avoid feeding them immediately before or after exercise. Large breed dogs are prone to hip dysplasia, so ensure they consume food containing Omega-3, fatty acids, antioxidants, glucosamine, chondroitin, and amino acids.

Irish Mastiff Mix Living Conditions 

Irish Mastiffs are large dogs, but they don’t require big spaces. A backyard will be perfect for them to stretch and consume their energy. According to their size, they will be comfortable with an apartment with sufficient living space. They can do well even outdoors, but leaving them alone outdoors might make them sick and lonely. If you have kids or other pets at home, they can get along well under proper socialization.

Adding an Irish Mastiff Mix to Your Family 

Things to remember before adding an Irish Mastiff Mix

Before getting an Irish Mastiff Mix, you must check their parents’ lineage and health. Also, purchase an Irish Mastiff pup from a responsible breeder who can provide you with the puppy’s vaccination records as well as gene testing credentials.

Cost of  an Irish Mastiff Mix puppy

On average, an Irish Mastiff Mix puppy may cost around $800 to $1500, not including miscellaneous costs.

Irish Mastiff Mix Puppy
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Irish Mastiff Mix Videos

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Other Irish Wolfhound Mixes

  • Black Russian Wolfhound Terrier 
  • German Wirehaired Pointing Wolfhound 
  • Giant Irish Wolf Schnauzer 
  • Irish Wolf Schnauzer 
  • Great Wolfhound 
  • Irish Wolf Greyhound 
  • Irish Mastiff 
  • Miniature Irish Wolf Schnauzer 
  • Irish Wolfoodle 
  • Irish Wolfsky 
  • Staffy Bull Wolfhound 
  • Standard Irish Wolf Schnauzer 
  • Tibetan Wolfhound 

Other English Mastiff Mixes

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