Where Are English Mastiffs From?
English Mastiffs date back to the first millennium BC, when Phoenician traders brought the Mastiff’s ancestors on trading ships to the British Isles. When the Roman Empire landed in Britain in 55 BC, Mastiffs were already cherished by the locals. The Romans were in awe by the strength of this huge dog breed and they were exported for use in the Colosseum, making them the only tame animal to fight against lions and other wild animals.
Mastiffs were exploited for their abilities in dog-fighting, bear-baiting, and bull-baiting for centuries. However, their sweet personalities as companions popularized them in the Industrial Revolution. Mastiffs were among the first dogs to come the New World on the Mayflower. They became a popular American dog breed and were even used to pull munition carts on the front line during WWI and WWII. The modern Mastiff was re-established in 1929 by the American Kennel Club and has been beloved ever since.