How to Calm a Bull Mastiff Before Grooming

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Easy
10 - 20 Minutes
4 Weeks

Introduction

One of the great things about the Bull Mastiff is that while they tend to be exuberant when they are puppies, most calm down and become somewhat docile as they reach adulthood. But don't mistake this for a lack of protective instinct, your pup will reach around 130 pounds and will jump to his family's defense fearlessly. The good news is that Mastiffs don't need to be groomed very frequently. But, if you have a dog that becomes anxious when grooming time comes along, you need to work with him to teach him grooming is not something he needs to worry about.

Dog's Perspective

Your Mastiff may be a bit wound up as a pup and wants to play far more than he wants you to give him a bath or brushing his coat. In fact, chances are that unless you started grooming him from the moment you brought him home, the tools you plan to use and the bath water are likely to make him quite anxious. It is up to you to show him he can relax.

The Tire Me Out Method

Effective
0 Votes
Step
1
Tire him out
Mastiff pups tend to be easily excitable and rambunctious but calm down as they get older. But if you start out by taking your dog for a nice long walk, it will help tire him out and relax him.
Step
2
Playing helps too
Your pup loves to play with the human members of his pack. Not only is playing with him a great way to bond with your Mastiff, it will help tire him out and calm him down before grooming time.
Step
3
One special place
Choose one room in your home where grooming your pup will always take place. Familiarity will help your pup calm down by association.
Step
4
Make the room relaxing
Create a nice calming environment in the room by adding some relaxing music (classical seems to work well). Your pup will pick up on the calming vibes.
Step
5
Use his sense of smell
Your pup has a very strong sense of smell, why not put it to use? Try adding a little lavender essential oil to a diffuser a few minutes before you bring your pup into the room. The smell of the lavender will help to calm him down even more. You are now ready to groom a nice, calm Bull Mastiff.
Recommend grooming method?

The Touch and Relax Method

Effective
0 Votes
Slicker Brush
Step
1
Prepare your pup
From the day you bring your pup home, you should be handling him and touching him. Try to do this on a daily basis.
Step
2
Lots of time
The more time you can spend playing with your pup and touching every inch of his body, paying particular attention to his "private areas" and his paws, two places he probably doesn't like being touched, the better.
Step
3
A daily massage
Sure, everyone knows how relaxing a good massage feels. If a good massage makes you feel calm and relaxed, imagine what it could for your pup. It doesn't have to be a long one, but keep working on your dog until he feels calmed down and relaxed enough to be groomed.
Step
4
Take it easy
Grab a stiff bristled boar hair brush and show it to your Mastiff. Give him time to sniff it, lick it, and see it in your hands. Let him take all the time he needs to get used to its existence.
Step
5
Time to brush
Slowly introduce your pup to the brush a little at a time. Start with just one part of his body at first and then build up to brushing his entire coat. By now he should be nice and calm and relaxed.
Recommend grooming method?

Caution & Considerations

  • The younger you start grooming your Bull Mastiff, the easier it will be for him to get used to the process.
  • Due to his short hair, the Mastiff doesn't need much in the way of grooming. Stick to no more than every 4 to 8 weeks for a full grooming.
  • Give him a light brushing or combing once a week.
  • Be sure to check for fleas, ticks, and signs of injury.
  • Always go slow and let your pup set the pace at first. There is no reason to be in a big hurry.
  • Be sure to give your pup time to get used to the tools of the trade. 

Conclusion

The only time you are likely to have a struggle grooming you Bull Mastiff is when he is young. As these dogs age, they tend to become very calm and relaxed. Take your time, make the whole experience relaxing and enjoyable for your pup and you will find that grooming time stops being a hassle and starts to become bonding time. 

Success Stories and Grooming Questions

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