I have a new puppy what should I be thinking about first?
Your dog’s health is your first concern.
Decide on a local veterinarian and schedule your first appointment to complete the puppy’s cycle of vaccinations. If you decide vaccinations are needed.
Next take a look at our feeding page to see the different dog foods available and why we suggest you look in to those particular methods or brands of food. Starting your new fur kid on the right path of eating healthy, safe food from day one is essential for a long and healthy life with your family.
Training of your puppy which includes housebreaking and socializing is also very important from Day 1. You must not do the wrong things with your new puppy or you will both develop bad habits which are hard to break later.
What is the right breed of Mastiff for my Family?
Start with a review of our pages on the history and different breed of mastiffs.
Are dogs that are not a purebred Mastiff a good dog to get?
Check out some of the articles on the difference between a pure breed and a crossbreed. You may be surprised to learn that some crossbred dogs will make very good pets.
Do I need to get a puppy that is registered?
Just because a dog has papers that does not insure against inbreeding or genetic problems. Registered dogs simple have a documented family tree which may be no guarantee of quality or health what so ever.
Is it better to get a Male or Female?
Both sexes of dogs have pros and cons. It is “generally” felt that the Males have a more stable personality with less moodiness and may be more protective and aggressive. Male dog’s genitals are very noticeable and this can sometimes bother some people. Female dogs tend to be more moody and manipulative. They may require more attention and like to be close to their owners.
The Pet Store is trying to tell me I have to get a puppy from a responsible breeder. Is this really true?
A breeder is any person who owns a female dog that has had a litter of puppies. Therefore the best thing to consider when getting any puppy is whether or not the person who has the puppies is knowledgeable about dogs, their health, their care and feeding, etc. There are specific things that people who breed dogs should be doing. Look at our pages on how to tell if the person who has the puppies is a good breeder or not.
How do I find a dog to adopt if I don’t want to buy one from a breeder?
There are several places you can go to adopt a dog. The local “Petsmart” stores usually hold adoptions on Saturdays. The local Animal Shelter is always holding open activities in the community for adoption or you can go to their site and visit. There are several rescue organizations online that offer adoption of their dogs. A good one for Mastiff’s and giant dogs is Burt Ward’s Gentle Giant Rescue.
What about Training my new Puppy?
The Routine you start your Puppy on from the very first day is very important. Puppies feel more secure when there are not changes in their routine. Much like young children they like structure. Establish where their food and water dish will be and don’t move them around. Introduce them to their bed and keep it in one place. Get them in a routine of the time they eat, when they go out to eliminate, when they get up and when they go to bed. By 2 to 3 months old your puppy should be learning the words for No, Good, Come, Sit etc. Teaching words with the right tone of voice, patience and firmness is key to a happy and healthy puppy and family.
How do I house break my dog?
The biggest thing that is overlooked in house breaking a puppy is the use of confinement until the bladder develops to the point when the dog can control this important function of the body. Confinement does not have to be a cage. It can be in a simple baby gated area out in the middle of the family area where everyone is around and remembers to take the puppy out on time so there are no accidents. Smaller dogs can take up to 10 months to be able to control these functions where larger dogs develop more quickly say 3 months.
How do I break the Bad Habits my Dog has developed?
When you bring home a new puppy he is joining your family or to a Dog a “PACK”. He will either lead or follow. The Leader of the Pack is the one who is in charge. If you do not take charge and assume the position of the leader of the pack then your Dog will. You are not being mean to your dog when you lead him. You are the person who cares for and feeds your Dog. He is dependent on you to provide shelter, food, water and healthcare. He is not equal to you. He must respect you.
You must be able to perform minor health care procedures and grooming on him without resistance. You must be able to restrain him while in public with you or in the company of other people who are not in his family (pack). This is essential for both his and health and safety.
A dog feels secure in knowing what will happen after he does something. Behavior that makes people happy is Security. He will love you unconditionally.
What is the best dog food?
Homemade dog food from all the food we eat ourselves with an emphasis on meat, bone and organs of animals. I have posted on MostlyMastiffs on Face Book some good links for books on how to make your own dog food. There are a few commercially sold foods also that are good but real food is the very best.
Which vaccinations do our dogs really need?
Vaccinations have changed quite a bit over the years. Some feel it is not necessary to vaccinate at all. There are many schools of thought on the pros and cons of this practice. Review this with your veterinarian to see what your feeling is on the necessity of vaccination of your Dog.
What are the pros and cons of spaying and neutering?
Many times this is done too early and may affect the health of your dog later. By taking away normal hormone production bones, joints etc. can be affected. Doing this too early can slow or inhibit cognitive development. It can also give a greater risk that our Dog may become obese or develops certain cancers and it is a major surgery requiring anesthesia.
There are several positive things that seem to come from this practice such as reducing the likelihood of certain infections or health conditions, behaviors and of course unwanted pregnancy.
What if my veterinarian does not agree with me?
Mostly Mastiffs supports the advice of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association (AHVMA). Their advice is based on the latest research by veterinary immunologists, and if your veterinarian belongs to this association he will support this way of belief in treating your family pets. You may want to look up this association and find a new veterinarian that Belongs to the AHVMA.
If you have a question that is not answered in the website or on one of our pages please take a look at our recommended Reading Resource page and Associations Page to acquire or inquire with one of the sources listed there.