The Pit Bullmastiff is not a pure-bred dog but they were bred purposely to be a guard dog and for hunting big game. They were originally used by British gamekeepers to catch and retrieve wounded animals. They were first bred in the 1960s by a veterinarian, John Swinford, and were further developed by a breeder named Joe Lucero. You must also consider the histories of the parent breeds of the Pit Bullmastiff. The American Pit Bull Terrier was bred from Old English Bulldogs and Old English Terriers from Scotland, Ireland, and England in the 1800s to create the strength of the Bulldog and the gameness of the Terrier. The result was a dog that excels in many fields including conformation, weight pulling, dock jumping, lure coursing, agility, tracking, and obedience. They were originally used for bear baiting and dog fighting but these sports were outlawed in 1835. In fact, it is thought that they got their name from being put in the pit to fight with other dogs. The breed has gotten a bad reputation for being aggressive but they are not unless they are taught to be that way or if they are mistreated. They were accepted by the United Kennel Club in 1898 and are still popular dogs today. The Bullmastiff originated in England in 1795 from a mix of the Bulldog and the Mastiff to help with police work and to track down poachers. Although they look ferocious, they are gentle and sweet dogs that make excellent pets. They are still used in the Army and as police dogs because their imposing stature is a good deterrent for criminals. They are the 48th most popular breed of dog in America where they were registered with the American Kennel Club in 1934.