Denomination of the breed:

Spanish mastiff.


Mastiff From Leon, Extremaduran Mastiff, Mastiff from La Mancha.


On the whole of Spain, especially in mountains and mountain passes in Asturias, León, Cantabria and Extremadura, and generally in all those regions affected by the period of seasonal cattle migration. We must treat the Aragonese and Navarre Pyranees and the migratory region of The Monegros apart as it is a major zone of distribution of the Pyraneean Mastiff.


Molozoide. Type B.


a) General description:

Dog of great size, massive and well-proportioned. Very powerful and muscled. Compact skeleton. Very large head and body with semilong hair. Affectionate, tame and noble, it turns out to be a dog of great firmness when confronted with enemies and strangers, especially when defending and guarding properties and cattle. His bark is hoarse, grave and deep, of great intensity, being perceived at a considerable distance.

It is a very intelligent dog not devoid of beauty. His expression shows both qualities. We can see from his behaviour that he is a dog sure of himself, and he is able to measure his strength as he very well knows how powerful he is.

b) Height at the withers:

There are no maximum height limits although the highest dogs are clearly preferred to the rest, provided they are proportioned.

Minimum limits:

Males: 77 cm.

Females: 72 cm.

Greater height is desirable and males should preferably measure over 80 cm., and females over 75 cm.

c) Formation:

Longitudinal diameter superior to the height at the withers. Proportionality and functional harmony must be looked after, both in rest and in movement.

d) Usefulness:

This is a breed for cattle guarding and defending. Coward, timid and unbalanced dogs should not be used for reproduction.

This breed is intimately related to the seasonal migration especially of sheep, which have been accompanied by mastiffs since the Middle Ages and defended from wolves and other predators throughout all their migrations in different locations. Nowadays the mastiff accompanies a good number of flocks both settled and migratory recovering his ancestral function. He likewise recovers his guard's function defending people and properties in general.

  1. HEAD

a) General description:

Large, strong and with a broad base. The relation between the length of the skull and that of the face should be 6/4. The union of the skull and the foreface, seen from above, should be square and uniform and without a very marked decrease between the base of the foreface and the temporal bone.

Skull and face lines diverge moderately.

b) Skull:

Wide, strong and with a subconvex profile. The width of the skull will be the same as or superior to its length. Occipital bone strongly marked.

c) Stop:

Soft, slightly accented.

d) Face:

Straight profile. It turns out rectangular seen from the back, gradually narrowing towards the muzzle with still considerable width. In no case sharp-pointed.

e) Nose:

Black, damp, large and wide.

f) Lips:

The upper lip will cover widely the lower; the lower, with black mucous membranes, forms a loose lip juncture.

g) Teeth:

White, strong and healthy. Large, sharp and with good grip canines. Molars are strong and powerful. However, incisors are rather small. Scissor’s bite. All the premolars exist.

h) Eyes:

Small in relation to the skull, almond shaped, preferably dark, hazelnut colour, attentive, noble, sweet and intelligent expression, of great fierceness before a stranger.

i) Eyelids:

With black, bulky skin. The loweer eyelid allows part of the conjunctive tissue to be seen.

j) Ears:

Medium dropping ears, triangular in form and flat. Rooted abovethe line of the eyes. At rest, falling flat against the cheeks and not too close to the skull. At attention, separated from the face and partially put up in its upper part. They should not be cropped.

k) Palate:

Black with marked crests.

  1. NECK

Lone shaped, wide, strong, muscular, flexible. Heavy and loose skin. Weel developed double dewlap.

  1. BODY

a) Overall appearance:

Rectangular, strong and robust, denoting great power, but flexible and agile.

b) Withers:

Well marked.

c) Back:

Powerful, muscular. Wide spaced ribs and rounded, not flat. The relationship between the thoracic perimeter and the height at the withers will be approximately 1/3.

Long, wide and powerful loin narrowing at the flank.

d) Croup:

Wide and strong. Its slope is about 45 °in relation to the dorsal line and a horizontal one to the floor. Height at the croup equals height at the withers.

e) Dorsal / Top Line:

Straight, horizontal and even in movement.

f) Chest(breast):

Wide, deep, muscular and powerful. Marked brisket.

g) Abdomen and flanks:

Moderate tuck up, low with wide flanks.

  1. TAIL

Very wide basem medium tailset. Strong, flexible and well coated with more hair than in the rest of the body. At rest it is carried low, reaching the hocks and slightly curved in the last quarter. When excited or running, raised saberlike, curled at the end but never totally doubled or resting on croup.


a) Overall apperance:

Absolutely straight down to the pasterns. Straight and parallel from the front. The length of the forearm is triple the length of the pastern. Strong bones with powerful metacarpus.

b) Shoulders:

Oblique, very muscular. Shoulder blade longer than the upper arm.

c) Scapula Humerus Angle:

Close to 100 °.

d) Radius Humerus Angle:

Close to 125 °.

e) Pastern:

Seen laterally with a slight inclination. It is practically the continuation of the forearm. Strong bones.

f) Feet:

Cat like. Tight fingers. Strong, high and well arched digits. Robust and hard nails and pads. Moderate interdigital membrane with hair.


a) Overall appearance:

Powerful, muscular with moderate inclination. Wide articular angles. Straight down hocks  capable of driving the dog with ease, strength and elegance.

b) Thighs:

Strong and muscular.

c) Pelvis angle:

Close to 100 °.

d) Legs:

Long, muscular and strong boned.

e) Femur-Tibia angle:

Close to 120 °.

f) Hocks:

Well marked with clear appraisal of the tendon.

g) Hock angle:

Open. Close to 130 °.

h) Feet:

Cat feet, slightly oval. Mastiffs may or may not have dewclaws, which can be simple or double and its cropping being admitted.

  1. GAIT

The preferred gait is the trot. It has to be harmonious, powerful, with no tendency to lateral movements. Withour pacing.

  1. SKIN

Elastic, thick, abundant and rosy coloured, with dark pigmentations. The mucous membranes are black.

  1. HAIR

Thick, heavy, semilong, smooth, over all the body to the interdigital spaces. Two types of hair are distinguished: one over the back and the other protecting the ribs and the flanks. Shorter on the quarters and longer on the tail.


Indeterminate. Uniform colors are preferred: yellow, tawny, reds and blacks, wolf and fawn colours. Likewise combined colours: tiger-striped and dappled.



Profiles of the foreface sheeplike, without excess.

Lack of one or few premolars

Level bite.

Weak topline, distorting or waving in movement.

Weak pasterns and feet but not in excess.

Not excessively marked coyness.


They exclude the rating of excellent

Snipy foreface.

Moderated overshot mouth.

Absence of several premolars or canines unless due to accident.


Height at the croup notably superior to height at the withers.

Weak legs or not straight. Weaving movement.

Cow hocks in movement or at rest.

Wavy, curled and excessively long hair.

Entropion or ectropion in excess.

Unbalanced character. Excessive coyness or excessive aggressiveness.

Fragile or lymphatic aspect in excess.

Tail carried over the back.


Ineligible for confirmation of purebred and biotype

Crooked nose.

Any degree of undershot mouth.

Excessive overshot mouth.

Nose and mucous membranes dispigmented and accompanied by light eyes.

Monorquidism and cryptorchidism.