The Neapolitan Mastiff

Neapolitan Mastiff
The Neapolitan Mastiff


These massive dogs, an ancient breed, are known for their imposing size—they weigh up to 150 pounds—and the loose folds of skin that cover their large frames. They can be traced back to ancient Egypt, Persia, Mesopotamia, and Asia, and were used as dogs of war in the Roman army. In this role, they are thought to have worn spiked leather harnesses to disembowel the enemy’s horses. More recently, one took a starring role in the Harry Potter movies as Hagrid’s pet, Fang, and no wonder; with its massive head, huge body, and wrinkly skin the Neapolitan is an awe inspiring figure falling just short of cinematic invention. Steady, loyal dogs, they are protective of their families and, due to their size, strength, and temperament, require socialization to ensure they are not aggressive with strangers. They rarely bark unless provoked and, as such, are renowned for sneaking up on intruders.

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