The Mastador mixed breed dog is a combination of two purebred dogs one of them a Labrador Retriever and the other one a Mastiff. The dog’s name takes a bit from each breed as well, and the end result is Mastador, a name that is used for any combination between two parents of these breeds.
These dogs can be the result of accidental breeding, or they can be bred specifically to get a Mastador dog, usually because the breeder wants to get a certain type of dog, with the best characteristics from both breeds. Unfortunately, nobody can know for sure what characteristics a mixed dog breed will have, since they will randomly take some things from the mother and others from the father. You might get a dog with the friendliness of the Labrador, or you might get that characteristic from the Mastiff side of the gene pool.
A Mastador is quite unpredictable so you need to be ready to deal with any type of personality it might have. This is because the parents have polar opposite personalities. The Labrador Retriever is the sweetest and friendliest dog in the world. While the Mastiff is known to be more intimidating and very protective.
You should only get a Mastador if you are sure you will always have the space, time, and resources to care for a big and energetic dog. More than that, owning such a dog is a very big responsibility as they live up to 12 years, some even more if you are taking the best care of them.
Quick – Pros & Cons of a Mastador
Mastadors are known to be among the sweetest dogs around and they are more than excellent with children. They’re very intelligent, intuitive, alert, protective, social, and easy to groom. They are the best choice for someone that loves traveling and would like a dog that is strong enough to protect them but also energetic enough to keep up with their adventures.
Despite having the Labrador Retriever as one of the parents, Mastadors are nowhere near as active. One hour of serious exercise a day is more than enough for them. This means that you might even be able to keep one in an apartment as long as you’re providing the dog with the daily exercise it needs. But even then, their life in an apartment will on be OK, not good. This is because they actually thrive in big houses, regardless if they have a yard or not.
They’re quite big and you need to take that into consideration very seriously before getting one. If you don’t have the indoor space for a Mastador, you might want to look for another dog. They are indoor dogs and can suffer from separation anxiety if left outside all the time.
Great with children
Easy to groom
Mastadors require daily tooth brushing.
They don’t do very well in apartments.
The temperament of the Labrador is one that makes him quite friendly with strangers, while the Mastiff is a little less so. Both breeds depend on people moderately and they do very well around children. They also do well with other pets in the household, especially if they’ve been around as they grew up.
The way your Mastador acts will depend a lot on which one of the parents it takes after. If it takes after the Labrador Retriever, it will inherit its aloof and friendly personality when it’s around strangers as well. It will love to get as much attention as possible from everyone and you might have a bit of a hard time socializing it properly and teaching it that it’s not OK to jump on strangers at the dog park.
On the other hand, if it takes after the Mastiff parent, you can expect your Mastador to be a lot more protective and unfriendly when it sees someone it doesn’t know. This can make them excellent guard dogs but it will also give them the stubbornness of the Mastiff, which can cause a few drawbacks in training.
Is it good with children?
While the Mastador itself will love hanging around with children and playing with them, they are not ideal for toddlers. It’s best to never leave them alone unsupervised even for a second, and you should only let the bigger kids play with the dog. This is because of its massive size, which can knock a child down just by wagging its tail too happily.
Despite being very friendly, Mastadors don’t do well with children that don’t respect boundaries. They will try to get away from a kid as soon as the child starts pulling their hair or ears too harshly. This might force them to bark at the children to be left alone, which is why you always need to be around to make sure things don’t escalate.
Besides ear pulling, you should also make sure the children don’t attempt to ride the dog. It’s not a pony and it can actually end with serious back problems over time. The dog’s personality will also change when they reach adulthood, which means it might get very annoyed by things it used to accept from children. This is a massive dog so never leave it to play with small kids without close supervision.
Behavior towards strangers
As mentioned before, their reaction to strangers depends on which parent gene is most dominant. If they take after their very friendly parent, they will become very excited when they see someone new. This can be great if you’re not looking for protection and you’re always having friends and family over. But you will always be alerted when someone is coming, which is why they thrive better in homes than in apartments.
But if it takes after its more territorial parent, it will start refusing to accept strangers in the house from a pretty young age. This will make it an extremely good guard dog and you won’t have to worry about someone breaking in. The downside is that you will have to spend a lot of time training it to be less territorial and accept some strangers if you want it to be social. This is why getting a Mastador is a gamble.
How it does with other pets/dogs
This mix between a Labrador Retriever and Mastiff can be excellent with other pets as long as it grew up around them. If you plan on having lots of pets, it’s best to get the Mastador last so it can grow surrounded by all the animals you have in your home. This will inevitably make the dog accept the other pets and it won’t be bothered by its natural hunting instinct. Otherwise, a Mastador might think smaller animals are great for hunting, which can cause a disaster pretty quickly.
If you want to have another dog, it’s also recommended to get it while the Mastador is still a puppy and has time to get used to the new dog. A male Mastador will be very territorial and it might start fights with the other dog if it’s a male as well. This is why you might want to consider getting another dog that is the opposite sex of the one you already have. This will save you lots of territorial problems and you won’t have to deal with the dogs trying to prove who’s the alpha in the house.
Aggressiveness of a Labrador Retriever and Mastiff Mix
Mastadors are not known to be aggressive, even when they’re protecting their home. They will bark so the intruder will get off the property, but it won’t attack unless the stranger won’t back down. They’re pretty big animals, which means their bite is quite serious as well. This is why the way you train them is very important.
These dogs might hurt a toddler simply because of their big size. It’s important to check if this was done by accident or because the dog got aggressive. Most of the time it’s simply because it’s excited to play with children and the kids are too small to be able to deal with their excitement. But bullying can easily anger a Mastador, which means it might bark aggressively at whoever it’s causing it harm. Never let a child or anyone else hurt the dog, take its food, or bother it while it’s sleeping.
Does it bark a lot?
The Labrador usually enjoys barking, but the Mastiff not so much, so here the dog could go either way. He might be quiet, or he might make some noise from time to time. This means you should make sure your neighbors don’t hear the deep barks of a big dog if you live in an apartment. A place that’s properly sound insulated won’t be a problem, but a typical apartment might be a bad choice for this dog.
A Mastador is known to thrive in big houses with lots of family members, even if the yard is not too big. This will also give them the freedom to bark whenever they feel like danger is approaching your home. Make sure the gate is not unlocked as the dog might take after the Mastiff and be very quiet. A newspaper boy might not realize there’s a dog around and the Mastador might attack out of nowhere trying to get rid of the stranger.
Appearance and Grooming
What follows is a look at the general characteristics of both breeds that compose the Mastador. Since generally, the dog will take things from both sides of the family, you can’t really know what to expect until you look at what both parents are like. That’s what we’re going to do here. The average lifespan for both breeds is similar, somewhere between 10 and 12 years in most cases.
Their heads are typically quite big and they can look like either parent. Their ears are floppy and their muzzle is pretty accentuated as well. While their heads typically look like a Mastiff, they have the athletic body of a Labrador Retriever. And grooming is a pleasure once you get them used to the procedure.
How big does it get?
Size–wise, the Labrador is likely to be the smaller of the two, since most of them vary from 50 to 115 pounds, with 22 to 27 inches in height at the withers. The Mastiff, on the other hand, is over 25 inches in height, and the weight starts at 110 pounds.
This means they might knock things down in a small apartment, which is why they live better in homes. They need quite a lot of space. Don’t scold the dog if it knocks something down by accident, especially because of its size. It wasn’t intentional and it can actually ruin your relationship with the dog.
No matter which parent the Mastador takes after, it’s inevitable that you will get a big one. And it will be very surprising as well. This is because Mastador puppies are so small even when they are a few months old. Then they get a growing spur that makes you think they’ll never stop growing. Make sure you’re ready for a dog that can get between 25 to 36 inches tall and between 100 to 160 lbs in weight.
What does a Mastador look like?
The mix between a Mastiff and a Labrador Retriever can be quite hilarious at times. When a Mastiff runs toward you, they tend to look aggressive even when they’re happy to see you. On the other hand, a Lab coming towards you will always look aloof and very funny. A mix between these two can go either way and it sometimes can look like a serious and dangerous dog, but act like the goofiest ball of fur in the world.
Their ears will always be floppy and their legs athletic. But their muzzle can sometimes be longer or shorter and thicker. But there’s a very small difference. Their chest is very sturdy but the rest of their body will almost always look like they’re very athletic dogs.
Appearance and color
A litter of Mastadors can have various appearances and some might be completely black, completely golden, all brown, dark brown heads with brindle bodies, golden backs and heads, white bellies, chests, and necks, and a darker muzzle, etc. It’s impossible to predict how a Mastador will look as the options are way too many. This is because their parents can be found in various colors as well, especially the Mastiff parent.
Their eyes are typically black but they can be brown as well. And when it comes to their noses, it’s almost always black unless the dog is brown or with a brown head. This is when the nose will be brown as well. But their muzzles are typically darker, which means they’re more likely to have black noses.
Type of coat
Both the Labrador Retriever and the Mastiff have very short coats. This means you won’t have to deal with a lot of hair unless it’s shedding season and they need to change their coat. But even so, it’s still better to have a lint roller around as they are big dogs and you never know where their hair might make its way to. Their coats will never be a problem to groom either.
But since they don’t have thick and long coats, they don’t resist in the cold for too long. However, they accept cold weather a lot better than hot weather. They are just better kept inside. If you’re looking for a guard dog that can protect your home and stay outside, you should look for a guard dog with multiple coats that are long and very thick.
How easy it is to groom?
The coat of both breeds is short and it sheds averagely. Grooming is usually not necessary, and if it is, it’s only a little amount of work. You only need to pick up a brush around once a week and you’re typically done in less than 20 minutes. They’re definitely not heavy shedders but they’re also a very bad choice for people with allergies.
Real grooming starts when you need to look after their ears and teeth every single day. You will have to brush their teeth daily or at least 4 times a week. This is because they are known to deal with food build-up that can cause lots of harm in the long run. And their ears need to be checked for pests and cleaned properly each evening. You will also need to cut their nails once or twice a month, depending on the situation.
Care Guide – Diet, Exercise & Health Issues
It’s very important to keep up with your monthly veterinary checkups, especially if you notice your dog is a bit more sensitive. You might need to invest in annual blood tests, radiographies, X-rays, etc. While they are generally healthy dogs, they can still be very sensitive when it comes to various diseases. You should always consult your vet when you take any decisions in changing the dog’s food, exercise plan, etc.
Having a vet on speed dial is also important as you never know what can happen to your dog. Pay attention to any weird behaviors as well, especially if they’re not typically doing anything weird. Something as simple as them licking themselves too much can be a sign of a serious problem.
Diet Tips: What does it eat?
Mastadors need high-quality food that is formulated for big dogs with medium to high levels of energy. Always remember to subtract the treats you give your dog every day from each meal. This will help ensure that it won’t gain weight. And if it eats too fast, you can easily get a slow-feeder from almost any pet shop. This will help prevent bloating as well.
The amount of food these dogs need each day needs to be discussed with your vet. Their diet will change throughout their life and your vet needs to know about each change when you take it to its usual checkup.
Exercise Requirements: Keeping the dog in shape
You can expect the dog to require plenty of exercise, so be ready to offer it to him if you’re getting this mixed breed. A small or medium yard is ideal, though apartment living is OK for them as well if you make sure that they get all the exercise they need.
If you can take your Mastador with you on adventures each day it will be very appreciated. They need a lot of exercise and going jogging and hiking with you is ideal. Otherwise, you will need to find a safe environment for them to run a lot for about an hour each day. This is why having a yard is highly recommended.
Common Health Issues for a Mastador
Some health concerns that you should keep an eye out for are Elbow Dysplasia, Cataracts, Pulmonic Stenosis, Retinal Dysplasia, Obesity, Canine Hip Dysplasia, Gastric Dilation Volvulus (GDV) or Bloat. Ask your vet to check for these health problems each year through extensive tests and checkups.
Another thing you should keep in mind is that Mastadors might have impact anal glands. This means they are unable to defecate. If your dog hasn’t pooped in a while and you notice it scooting or licking its anal area, take it to the vet or a professional groomer. They are trained to have the glands expressed, and you will be able to learn to do it by yourself as well.
Training a Mastador
Training is another thing that is impacted by which parent the Mastador is taking after. The Labrador Retriever is known to be one of the easiest-to-train dogs around. But the Mastiff is a bit more stubborn, which will make training a bit harder. But anything is possible, especially with the help of a professional.
But regardless of how easy they are to train, you will need lots of patience and time. They are intelligent and will learn how things go pretty quickly. But they might challenge your position from time to time and you need to make it clear who is the boss. This only means using a firm and confident voice, not yelling or threatening the dog.
They are typically obedient dogs and they love pleasing their owner. But they can have their stubborn side as well, so make sure you’re never over-looking it. Otherwise, if the dog sees it can get away with it once, it will keep trying. You will need to start the obedience training as soon as the dog got used to the new home and new people around it.
The later you start with the obedience training, the harder it will be. Adult dogs are about 20 times harder to train than puppies. Everything needs to be done at the right time so the dog won’t think he’s the boss in the house.
If you want your Mastador to be as social as possible, or at least friendly with guests, you will need to start socialization training as soon as possible as well. This includes letting the dog meet as many new people and pets as possible. This way, it will also learn pretty quickly that it’s not OK to jump on strangers looking for treats and attention.
Having a friend with a pet is a very helpful way of getting the dog used to other animals. This will help them realize that they should never attempt to hunt the other pets in the house and to always play nice. You should also make sure the dog leaves the cats alone if they want to be left alone.
A Mastador will need a lot of toys and at least one hour of hardcore running and playing each day. This will keep their usual energy level under control. Make sure you’re investing in both typical toys and special ones designed to stimulate a dog’s brain. It’s also important to spend some time playing with your dogs as well. This will help you create a deeper bond between you and the Mastador.
Skipping an exercise day is not acceptable as dogs naturally become destructive if they have too much energy and no means to get rid of it. And since these dogs are extremely big, you definitely don’t want a 160lbs dog running around and turning the house upside down.
Breeding & Puppies
Breeding Mastadors is not an easy thing to do as you will need to invest a lot in the parent’s health. More than that, you will need to pay for various blood tests and checkups before the puppy is ready to go to its new home. The typical litter is around 7 puppies and they all need a lot of care and patience.
Mastador puppies are small bubbles of energy. They can run for hours daily until they almost collapse on their bed. Then they go to sleep and repeat everything the moment they get up. You should think twice before getting such a puppy if you’re not an energetic person with lots of free time.
Finding a Mastiff and Labrador Retriever Mix – Kennels & Pedigree
Finding a Mastador is not very easy, especially if you’re looking for a rescue. Good breeders are hard to find but they are worth it. They need to inform you about absolutely anything and they also should let you see the rest of the litter and the parents. If not, you should look for another breeder. A Mastador is a 50-50 mix between a Mastiff and a Labrador Retriever, first-generation.
While the American Kennel Club doesn’t accept crossbreeds, Mastadors are recognized by the American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Dogs Kennel Club, Dog Registry of America, Inc., International Designer Canine Registry and Designer Breed Registry.
How much does a mixed Mastador cost?
Getting a Mastador is definitely not for anyone that struggles financially. A single puppy can cost between $900 and $2000, and sometimes even more. It all depends on the breeder and whether the parents are prized dogs or not.
You can expect to spend around $2000 a year on medical and non-medical needs. This includes lots of health checkups, food, treats, toys, etc. They are quite expensive, which is also why they are not among the most popular crossbreeds in the world.
History & Origins of the mixed breed
The Bullmastiff comes from the United Kingdom, while the Labrador Retriever is from Newfoundland, Canada. On the other hand, the Mastador originates from the United States of America. There have been lots of unintentional crossbreeding between pure breeds, which is why these dogs have a very blurry history. It’s not even known when breeders started to make Mastadors intentionally.
It’s believed that this mix was first created by breeders sometime in the last 15 to 20 years. And now they are among some of the most expensive designer dogs in the world. Other than this, there is nothing that can be determined with absolute certainty about this crossbreed.
Mastadors can be excellent for both big families and single people that are always home. This is because they are great with children and are very intelligent. You will also love their crazy levels of energy when you’re going on adventures together. This is not a dog you can leave in someone else’s care for a few weeks while you’re on a vacation. They love to tag along and they definitely can keep up with you.
More than that, they’re also very protective and can be social butterflies if you’re training them properly. This is definitely a dog you want to have if you’re scared of someone breaking in. They’re very territorial and they will protect their family with everything they got.
And finally, a video with black Mastador puppies playing next to their mother.