menu icon

American Bandogge Mastiff

Home »  Dog Breeds »  American Bandogge Mastiff
American Bandogge Mastiff

The American Bandogge is a hybrid of the American Bit Bull Terrier and the Neapolitan Mastiff. It is not like other hybrids that have popped up recently known as designer hybrids. This mix has been around for a while now. The Bandogge is a confident and intelligent dog who will act as a devoted guardian to its family. They do however need owners who know how to deal with and communicate with dogs, someone with experience and who knows how to establish dominance. For this reason they are not suited as first time pets. It does have a history of dog fighting and in some places on the east coast is still bred for that purpose, but thankfully elsewhere they are bred for more positive reasons. He is a giant short haired dog with a life span of ten to eleven years.

Here is the American Bandogge Mastiff at a Glance
Average height 19 to 30 inches
Average weight 70 to 125 pounds
Coat type Short and fine
Hypoallergenic? No
Grooming Needs Low to moderate
Shedding Average shedder
Brushing Needs brushing 2 or 3 times a week but his coat is easy to brush
Touchiness Not sensitive
Tolerant to Solitude? Moderate, prefers company
Barking Low
Tolerance to Heat Moderate better in warm climates
Tolerance to Cold Moderate better in warm climates
Good Family Pet? Very good to excellent
Good with Children? Very good with socialization
Good with other Dogs? No, only if trained
Good with other Pets? Moderate to good
A roamer or Wanderer? Low to moderate
A Good Apartment Dweller? Not the best, low to moderate
Good Pet for new Owner? No, need someone who understands dogs well
Trainability Very good
Exercise Needs Moderate to high
Tendency to get Fat Moderate chances
Major Health Concerns Bloat
Other Health Concerns Joint dysplasia, eye problems
Life Span 10-11 years
Average new Puppy Price $750
Average Annual Medical Expense $500-$650
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $550 - $675

Where does the American Bandogge Mastiff come from?

As this mix breed is not like many of the new kind there is actually some kind of origin story. In the 1960s Swinford who was a vet started to breed dogs to create one who would be the best protection dog. While experts still disagree as to what dogs were originally bred in that scheme most believe it was the American Pit Bull Terrier with the large Molosser. Nowadays the most common breeding method to get a Bandogge is to cross the American Pit Bull Terrier with the Neapolitan Mastiff. Other methods include the American Pit Bull Terrier with the English Mastiff. The name Bandogge comes from old English Saxon Bandog. This can from Banda meaning chain. This refers to their practice of chaining the dog up during the day and releasing him at night to protect the village.


American Pit Bull Terrier

While originally bred to bait bulls the American Pit Bull Terrier this sadly miss understood and often feared dog went on to become farm dogs and then family dogs. Some breeders have taken advantage of the breeds qualities in perseverance, strength and agility to create dogs bred to fight. However more scrupulous breeders breed American Pit Bull Terriers who are devoted to their family and known to be amazing and gentle with children. They are intelligent and need to be trained and socialized as otherwise they can be stubborn and believe they are in charge!

Neapolitan Mastiff

This is a giant breed of dog originally from Italy bred to be a large protector of families. Today he is still very much a guardian rather than an attack dog. He is steady and even when he seems most relaxed is always alert and aware of his surroundings. He is affectionate to his family but aloof with others and his size and his strong will means training and socialization needs to be started early otherwise he is quite the unmovable mountain!


The American Bandogge Mastiff has very much picked up the protective instincts his two sires bring to him. He loves being part of a family and he is a devoted guardian. He loves attention and lives to please his pack leader. He is intelligent and loyal but can be stubborn so needs a firm hand, someone who knows how to establish dominance over him in a positive manner. He would be quite territorial should a stranger enter his home when his master is not there. He is usually good natured and social and if treated with respect can be playful, obedient and courageous.

What does an American Bandogge Mastiff look like

Appearance depends on which parent breed they lean more towards but general he is very large 19 to 30 inches tall and 70 to 120 pounds in weight. He is muscular and you can see his strength in his body with wide shoulders and a strong chest. His body symmetrical and well proportioned and compact. On his sturdy frame is a coat that is medium fine, short and close and comes in various colors such as black, gray, yellow, golden fawn, red, sandy, brindle and fawn. His head is boxy in shape and he has a strong jaw and ears that that range from small to large but hang down. Hi nose is usually black are are his eyes but that can change depending in his coat color. His tail is long and tapered and his eyes too are normally dark but can change according to coat color.

Training and Exercise Needs

Is he very active?

They are a giant breed with giant needs and a lot of exercise is certainly one of them though he is not the most active dog out there. They are classed in extreme sports, farm work, hunting and guardian and as well as physical exercise he also needs mental stimulation. About 45 minutes in total a day will keep him happy, healthy and avoid destructive behavior from a lack of activity. He can be lazy if allowed and a large yard with a fence is a good way to get him out some more. He is often used as a work dog including weight pulling, military work, guarding, tracking, police work and hunting.

How successful will training be?


He is an good dog to train, he is not super easier or quicker than other intelligent breeds but about the same level. The problem is it has to be done by someone who knows how to establish themselves as pack leader so that he will obey the commands. If he does not think you are more dominant than him he will likely ignore you. With good training by an experienced owner you will have an attentive dog ready and keen to please you and obey you. Just because of his size it is important to start training from a young age. An untrained American Bandogge Mastiff can become aggressive and/or destructive around the yard and home.

Living with an American Bandogge Mastiff

Grooming needs

They have low to moderate grooming needs. They do shed and so need brushing regularly with a firm bristle brush, a dog glove or a rubber brush. If you want to give his coat a nice shine after a brush rub it with a cloth. His hair is short so it is easy to brush and this will help remove loose hairs. If you start regular brushing from a young age he will be happy to let you do it as an adult too. This count to other grooming needs as well like wiping his ears once a week with a damp cloth, checking and clipping toe nails and bathing when he needs it. You should also check his eyes on a regular basis since he could be prone to eye problems.

Bathing is also something that is important to control the shedding and to improve his smell! Once a month should be enough so that you do not dry out his skin unless he gets particularly dirty in between! He is a big dog so if your bath or the shower is not possible a hose on outside might be necessary. You need his cooperation though, he is too big to lift or hold down. This is where starting as a puppy who is easier to deal with is so important.

How will he be with children, other pets or other dogs?

If he was raised with other pets in the house he will learn to get along with them.

Also if he went through socialization as a puppy that will really help him in his interactions with other pets. He is good with children too and some owners report that it seems they sense when it is important to be gentle. Raised properly they can be trusted completely with the children and can even become a self-appointed guardian or babysitter! He is calm with them and easy going but also is full of spirit and will join in their play. With other dogs it is a little different. If he has had no training or socialization he will see dogs as competition or poaching on is territory. They can become aggressive too.

General information

Barking is rare for the American Bandogge Mastiff in fact their reluctance to bark makes protection work when they are learning to bark and hold, difficult as they can sometimes refuse to perform the bark part. They will need to be fed four to five cups of high quality dry food a day split into two meals. That is important. This breed has a potential to get bloat, a serious life threatening condition and one of the things that can trigger it is when large dogs gulp down a huge amount of food too quickly. His five cups should not be fed to him all in one meal.

They are great with families as long as they have an owners who has established authority over him. They can be loving and protective but be prepared for some slobber! When indoors they are calm and fairly inactive, they need to be with their owner though they would not be happy at being left outside. He is confident and alert and very stable. If it perceives a threat it can become aggressive.

Health Concerns

His is prone to minor concerns such as hip and elbow dysplasia and eye problems. His size and his deep chest mean he is also more likely to be prone to developing bloat a very serious condition. While there are no absolute guarantees when it comes to your dog's health, when buying a puppy ask to see health clearances for both parents to give you and your puppy better odds.

Costs involved in owning an American Bandogge Mastiff


The cost of an American Bandogge Mastiff puppy will average around $750. To make sure you are ready for dog ownership you will need to have certain things like a crate, collar and leash, and food bowls. The dog will need some initial medical care too such as having him neutered, putting in a micro chip, getting blood tests done and deworming him. All of that will cost you another $500. After that your yearly costs will cover medical check ups, shots, emergency care savings, licensing, training, food, treats, toys all coming to around $1000. Other costs you may be facing include groomers, kennels and dog sitters or walkers.


Looking for a American Bandogge Mastiff Puppy Name? Let select one from our list!

While this dog may have a reputation of being a fighter he is really a great dog when trained and socialized. With the right owner he is great with children and will be a devoted guardian to them and to his owner. He is not for people with little or no real experience with dogs though.


More to Explore

Dog Owner Reviews