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I am looking to get my favorite breed of dog: Mastiff. But I can't spend much on dog food. How much should I expect a mastiff to eat per day once it's full grown?

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It really all depends on what you feed the dog.
A mastiff is going to eat a lot, no matter what you feed him, but the better the dog food, the less he is going to need to eat. People look at cheap dog food as less expensive, but that is only true at the register. If you are buying really good dog food, you are spending more, but buying it less, so it really equals out. They will not only eat less, but they will poop less and have healthier skin and coat, which will ultimately lead to less shedding and that's a definitely plus, with a Mastiff.

Anything with corn, wheat and soy is not considered to be real good dog food. Feeding dog food with corn is like giving your dog a bowl of Fruit Loops, twice a day; it's pure sugar. Also, think about the last time you ate corn and how it came back out.

As Matt was saying, there are special needs dogs that do need things like grain free dog food, or something other than chicken, for the main protein source (lamb, beef, venison, fish, etc) and that's where it really starts getting expensive. A dog owner should be prepared to spend a little more to keep the dog healthy. It's worth it, in the end.

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Based on this dog food calculator.

A full grown mastiff will grow to be about 150-200 pounds1.

Which means a 180 pound mastiff2 with what the site considers a "typical" activity level, and food with a kcal amount of 320 per cup3. You're looking at roughly 10-11 cups of food twice a day. Alternatively, that would be about 2 pounds of food each meal. Multiply 4 pounds of food with 7 days in a week and that means you're looking at 28 pounds of food each week.

Now that's a pretty rough estimate since you don't have the dog (or at least not yet), but you can play around with the calculator to figure out if those numbers are anything that you think you should be worried about.

Note that if your dog happens to be larger, or even just more active, than the average it could very well need more food. And, depending on the type of food you purchase, it might need to eat more in order to receive the calories it needs in a day. The quality of food makes a difference, and the prices of food is related to the quality.

In my opinion, if you have any concerns about being able to afford a 30 pound bag of dog food each week, then you should avoid large breed dogs.

Keep in mind that you should be prepared to be able to afford to take your pet to a veterinarian if need be. That is an expense on top of the others. You should never have to skip feeding your pet in order to afford a vet bill. Also, if it turns out it's allergic to certain ingredients you should be prepared to buy more expensive brands of food that exclude those ingredients.


1 http://dogtime.com/dog-breeds/mastiff
2 My estimated average weight based on the breed's weight range.
3 Based on the contents of Purina One healthy weight adult dog food.

  • 3
    I was about to say the thing about allowing for vet fees myself. If you can "only just afford" a pet, what will you do if something goes wrong and you have a big vet's bill? :( – starsplusplus May 23 '14 at 16:47
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I breed mastiffs so I will try to help you with this:

4-8 weeks of age         3-4 cups per day spread between 3-4 meals
8-12 weeks               4-6 cups per day spread between 3-4 meals
12-16 weeks              6-8 cups per day spread between 3-4 meals
4 to 6 months            8-10 cups per day spread between 2-3 meals
6-18 months              8-12 cups per day spread between 2-3 meals

These measurements are in another web site but I have been following this rule for years now.

OK my point is, as a breeder if you have not even got the puppy yet and you are already saying that you cannot afford to spend too much in dog food do yourself a favor and don't get the dog.

Why? English mastiffs need high quality food; their growth and life quality depends on it. Lets say you buy cheap dog food filled with byproduct stuff; now that dog is going to grow so fast and fat that, trust me, you are going to have an unhealthy dog for life. You already damaged the dog's joints etc. Now we are not talking about $5 or $15 dollars more on food. Now it's about thousands of dollars on surgeries, therapies, and a life full of pain for your dog, you see is like a chain reaction.

This is a good example: Blue Buffalo the biggest bag they sell is 30 pounds for $55 plus tax, so about $60. Each of my English mastiffs eat that in a 2 week period, so each mastiff will cost you just on food $120 a month. Now throw the vet bills etc. I am not saying that you have to feed them Blue Buffalo; there are other good quality dog foods out there, but this is the one I use and the one I recommend as the owner of 6 baby giants. I hope this has helped.

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You answered your own question,, you can't afford a lot, I have 5 dogs all different breeds my biggest boy is 47kg, Rottweiler cross ridgeback he eats a lot, I have a bullmastador puppy shes 15 weeks she eats a lot, she's weighing 20kg already the vet guesses she will be over 50kg when adult, they eat a lot, vets bills are expensive, so I would carefully think about it before taking one giant breed dog on

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I have 2 English mastiffs at 11 months and I feed them Blue Buffalo large breed puppy, and they're very huge, My monthly bill with Blue Buffalo treats and high protein large breed food is around $325.00. Heart worm protection is an additional $100.00 a month.

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I feed my 3 "babies" Pure Balance dog food. This is inexpensive (at least the chicken & brown rice formula). It doesn't contain wheat, corn, or soy. None of my dogs have any allergic reactions to this food. We go through 4 30lb. bags per month costing roughly $125/month. I definitely suggest this for a cheaper dog food.

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I have a 2 1/2 year old bull mastiff. I have been feeding him Blue Buffalo since I got him at 8 weeks old. He is very lean and active for a bull mastiff. I feed him about 3-4 cups twice a day which averages about 130.00 a month.

It is very important that you can afford this breed. I just had to take mine to the vet because he developed some sort of allergies on his skin, eyes and ears and the vet bill was $210.00 with all his medication. This wasn't an option I had to take him an get all his meds or he would have gotten worse. They're just like your children, you can expect things to come up and you need to be able to care for them.

  • You really haven't added much to the existing answers - could you perhaps reference the potential medical issues mastiffs are particularly prone to and how the right food can help prevent these? That would help to improve this answer. – Kate Paulk Sep 20 '16 at 12:28
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I was told by some E Mastiff breeders years ago X large dogs should NOT get high protein ( protein first item on ingredients)dog food as it excellerates bone growth and bones need to grow slowly to be stronger

MY three E Mastiffs are 6 and 7 years old and only have had Purina Chow with a spoon or 2 of Alpo or some soft dog food since puppies and are very healthy and weigh between 165 to r 200lbs . They have never been ill .My sons E Mastiff is 9 father of 2 of mine.Hes also very healthy eats Beneful The lumps on the elbow.... btw can get way bigger than small ball.My males are softball size.Vet doesnt think operation is a good idea because that area doesnt heal well at all. He like sleeping on tile.Do it again id start him on something soft and try and keep him on it.

  • I think you've left out some of your answer. After you discuss your son's dog is there something missing? – CGCampbell Jun 23 '16 at 14:56

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