Dogues De Bordeaux are much more than a fancy French name. Also known as the French mastiff, Bordeaux Mastiff or Bordeauxdog, they are one of the most ancient French breeds, with their descendants, the Neopolitan Mastiffs, first being noted in Ancient Rome during the reign of Julius Caesar.
Famous for their very wrinkly face and classic ‘hang dog’ features, and for starring with Tom Hanks in the 1988 movie ‘Turner and Hooch’, the Dog De Bordeaux is a working dog who is loyal, affectionate and sweet, if socialised correctly!
Dogue De Bordeaux Facts
• AVG Weight: 125 – 150 lbs
• AVG Height: 23 – 27 inches at the shoulder
• AVG Lifespan: 5 – 6 years
• Apartment living: Not really
• Level of exercise: Moderate
Dogue De Bordeaux Traits
• Quiet and calm – until provoked
• Agile and athletics when needed
• Very stubborn!
• Serious and self-assured around strangers
• Slobbery, drooly and dribbly
Dogue De Bordeaux Temperament
Dogues De Bordeax are mild mannered and calm dogs in general, if they have been socialised properly. They are not ones to start fights, but WILL finish them if provoked. Rowdy and exuberant when young, they become more placid as adults and act as brilliant watchdogs, being wary of strangers and very protective of their family.
This breed is strong willed and needs consistent and firm training and can sometimes be aggressive towards other animals. They love to cuddle up and interact and make great dogs in the home when given the right amount of leadership, attention and love.
Dogue De Bordeaux Suitable Environment
• A big house to cope with their big size, and exuberance when they are puppies
• Somewhere with good ventilation – they are gassy and tend to slobber and slime over everything!
• The bigger the house, the better, due to its size and risk of knocking things over
• Somewhere where there is someone around a lot, Dogues De Bordeaux can become destructive when bored
• Ideally kept as an only pet, as this breed can sometimes show aggression towards other animals, particularly dogs of the same sex
Dogue De Bordeaux Ideal Owners
An ideal owner for the Dogue De Bordeaux would be someone confident enough to take a strong lead in training, doesn’t mind being sat and slobbered on and who has the time to properly socialise their dog.
Dogues De Bordeaux have a short lifespan of between 5-6 years and tend to suffer from bone and joint diseases or cancer. An owner must be ready to handle this and be able to afford the necessary treatment for their dog.
Dogue De Bordeaux Appearance
Massive head, powerful body and that unmistakably wrinkled face, the Dogue De Bordeaux is one person’s Mona Lisa and another’s Garbage Pail Kid. Whilst his looks may divide people, the DDB, as they are nicknamed, certainly has poise!
The Dog De Bordeaux has a fine, short coat that comes in light to dark fawn colours that covers loose skin. Their body is thick set and low to the ground and their lips overhang their jaw, giving a classic ‘hang dog’ face.
Dogue De Bordeaux Breed History
Dogues De Bordeax have ancestors dating back to Ancient Rome, but the dog we know as a DDB now came about between 1203 and 1453 in the Aquitaine area of France. They are the result of cross breeding with the English mastiff and large Aquitairian guard dogs.
They were originally used as both war dogs and as guard dogs for flocks from wolves and bears. There were originally two strains of the breed, with the smaller one being used for bull baiting. Nowadays, only one strain remains although they had some close shaves. They were much loved by the aristocracy during the French Revolution and both World Wars and almost reached extinction after these events, following the slaughter of them with their masters.
The film Turner and Hooch created a lot of interest in the breed and they are now a favoured dog in family homes.