Is a Rottweiler a Mastiff? The Similarities and The Differences

The Rottweiler and the Mastiff are both purebred dogs that are quite similar to each other in size and in many other ways as well.

The Rottweiler originated in Rome, where they were descendants of the Molossus, which is a mastiff-type dog. So, the Rottweiler came from a Mastiff many years ago, but they are actually two different types of purebred dogs today.

It can be helpful to learn the differences between these two breeds, which are both considered to be large breeds of dogs. Within each of the two breeds, there are different types of purebred dogs.

What are The Different Types of A Rottweiler?

There are actually three different types of Rottweilers: the German Rottweiler, the American Rottweiler, and the Roman Rottweiler.

As you can guess, the main difference between them is what country they come from originally, although they look quite different too.

The German Rottweiler is a working dog that is recognized by The Rottweiler Club of Germany.

It’s designated that not all of these dogs are not allowed to reproduce unless they pass a physical and a temperamental test to make sure that the breed standards remain the same from one particular dog to the next.

This assures that the German Rottweiler will have litters of puppies with consistent temperaments and personalities.

The American Rottweiler is bred and born in the USA. Here, the purebred dog breed is mainly bred for advancing the striking appearance of the dog.

Purebred Rottweilers are accepted by the American Kennel Club (AKC) and may be beautiful show dogs or they may be companion dogs for families who also have the innate personalities of a protector and guardian.

The Roman Rottweiler doesn’t actually have any ties to Rome. They look very much like a Mastiff and selective breeding creates the Roman version of a Rottweiler.

This breed is harder to find and they appear different from the other two Rottweilers, but the coat pattern is very similar to them.

Because they are the largest Rottweiler, they often have hip dysplasia at an early age and some families decide against this breed.

What Are the Different Types of a Mastiff?

There are four distinct types of a Mastiff; the Bullmastiff, Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, and Tibetan Mastiff. Each is a bit different from the other in size and appearance.

The Bullmastiff is very loyal and courageous. He was first bred in England by crossing bulldogs and the Old English Mastiff to protect estates and game preserves from poachers. Their large size and stature would make a game poacher think twice about being on the gatekeeper’s property.

The Mastiff dates back to ancient times in Rome and Egypt and it is the oldest descendant of the Rottweilers of today. Mastiffs were used for fighting dogs as well as guard dogs.

Cesar described this dog as early as 55 B.C. when he invaded Britain. Today, Mastiffs are loved as family members who protect and guard their entire family while also being quite loveable.

The Neapolitan Mastiff looks quite different from what we normally think of as a Mastiff. He has very wrinkly skin in soft folds all over his body with large hanging jowls.

This Mastiff was bred for dogs of war in Rome. In Italy, they were guardians of the estates, where the massive size also kept out unwelcome visitors.

The Tibetan Mastiff is a very different version of a mountain dog with very long hair throughout his body except on his face.

This Mastiff is very stubborn and hard to train because you can call him and he will ignore you. These Mastiffs are pretty rare in the USA.

What Are The Similarities Between the Rottweiler and the Mastiff?

Both breeds of dogs are very pleasant and friendly overall. They rank about the same for family-friendly and kid-friendly, although each is below average for being friendly towards other pets.

They have the same personalities of being willing to please their owners, families, and handlers at all times, as well as being very loving and protective of their entire family pack.

Each of the two purebred dogs can live just about anywhere as long as they get enough exercise.

They are happy with a loving family whether they are in an apartment, have a yard of any size to play in, and are kept as inside dogs.

The Rottweiler, as well as the Mastiff, requires about a medium level of exercise to stay healthy and keep out of trouble and both breeds have very high strength due to their strong muscular builds.

The instincts of both breeds are also identical, as they love being part of the family or pack, but don’t usually try to be the dominant or alpha leader.

They are average in their focus, making them pretty easy to train and learn new things with a below-average propensity to hunt or chase animals.

They both sport coats that are double layered with short and straight hair to make them very easy to groom, as they only need brushing about once a week or so.

What Are The Differences Between the Rottweiler and the Mastiff?

In sheer size, these two breeds are very different although they are both considered to be large breed dogs. The Rottweiler reaches 22 to 27 inches tall and has a weight of 85 to 130 pounds when it is mature. He is also extremely intelligent.

The Mastiff will reach somewhere between 27 and 32 inches tall at the shoulder and can weigh between 120 and 220 pounds at maturity.

Since the Rottweiler is smaller than the Mastiff, you can expect it to live an average lifespan of 8 to 11 years, while the Mastiff averages 6 to 10 years of life.

The Rottweiler is more friendly to strangers than the Mastiff, who will be wary of anyone new until he’s assured that they will not cause any harm to his family members.

The personalities of the two breeds are very different from each other. The Rottweiler can be aggressive when it is warranted and can be a bit stubborn when you are training him.

The Mastiff is very affectionate and loves to snuggle with his family members at all times.

The grooming needs are quite similar, but an important thing to note is that the Rottweiler is a medium-level drooler, while the Mastiff is highly full of drool at all times. So, the Mastiff may need you to wipe his mouth often if drool is offensive to you.

The Rottweiler’s personality has a high propensity for aggression, fighting, guarding, and as a watchdog and a sled dog. Its herding and burrowing or digging in your yard is at a very low level.

The Mastiff has an average personality towards fighting, guarding, like a watchdog, and sledding abilities. He is below average at herding, digging and burrowing, and aggression.

What Are the Health Issues of Each Breed?

Each of the two breeds does not share any possible health issues, and the Rottweiler can be less healthy than the Mastiff.

A Rottweiler is predisposed to allergies, heart and eye conditions, certain cancers, hip dysplasia, and bloat. Whereas the Mastiff may inherit some types of cancer, vision problems, and seizures.

What Colors do the Coats of Each Breed Come in?

Purebred Rottweilers have a black coat with distinct markings of tan, rust, or mahogany. The lighter markings appear on the chest, legs, muzzle, and as two expressive eyebrows over the eyes.

A Purebred Mastiff is mostly a solid and light color of apricot, brindle, or fawn and he may or may not have black markings as a mask, on his ears, the tips of his toes, and tail. He may also have a white chest.

You should now be able to decide between which of these two wonderful breeds of dogs that you would like for a new family member.

You can compare their sizes, personalities, appearance, and temperament to decide which of the two distinctly different breeds will be best for your family dynamics.

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