Dog Breed Group: Guard Dog
Life Span: 10-12 years
Weight: Male: 63.5-67.5, Female: 90.5-91
Height: Male: 30-35, Female: 28-32
Origin of Name: The Spanish Mastiff or Mastín Español is a breed of dog from Spain.
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The Spanish Mastiff is a very old breed. It appeared on the Iberian peninsula 2,000 years ago, before the Roman invasion brought by the Greeks and the Phoenicians. The first mention of a mastiff from the area appears in Virgil's writings around 30 AD Virgil, his poem The Georgics mentions that the Iberian Mastiff's nurturing character would make it the best protector and protector of the herd. Another mention of the breed dates from the first century. The Roman agronomist and lead author, Columella, wrote a 12-volume book, Race Rustica, in which he wrote about the Mastiff: ""... fight in the darkness of dawn.""
The Mastiff's role flourished in the 10th century when the best organized and guided farming of animals in Europe became the lineage of sheep in Spain and the state's economy was based on the production and expansion of wool. Development peaked in the 12th century when a new style of breeding of sheep, the merino, began. These animals usually spent the winter in the south of Spain and moved to mountain slopes in the north in the beginning of summer. There were about 60,000 shepherds with a wandering flock of sheep and for every 100 sheep, there was at least one mastiff to protect the herds as well as to protect the herds.
Such heavy migration left an imprint on Spanish culture. The Spanish Mastiff can be seen in literary works as well as praised in paintings by the famous Velazquez. By that time, these dogs were characterized by well-known traits of their independence, weather resistance, and defensiveness.