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FCI-Standard N° 91/30.08.2002/GB SPANISH MASTIFF
(Mastin espanol)

TRANSLATION : Mrs. Peggy Davis.

ORIGIN : Spain.


UTILIZATION : Guard and defense. The breed is closely related to the seasonal moving in the livestock, and especially the Merino livestock which he already accompanied at the time of the “Mesta”(association, in the Middle-age, of breeders of the wandering herds) by defending them from wolves and other predators, all along their journey from one location to other and on the grazing pastures, in all seasons and sites. Actually he accompanies numerous herds, whether sedentary or wandering by fulfilling his ancestral task. He performs in the same way the function of guard and protection of farms, people and properties in general.

CLASSIFICATION F.C.I. : Group 2 Pinscher and Schnauzer- Molossoid breeds- Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs and other breeds.

Section 2.2 Molossoid breeds, Mountain type.
Without working trial.

GENERAL APPEARANCE : It is a dog of great size, hypermetic, of medium proportions and of sub-long line structure. Well balanced, very powerful and muscular. Compact bone structure. Massive head and a body covered with a semi-long coat. Most important are balance and functional harmony in the dog standing as well on the move. His bark is raucous, low pitched and deep, very sonorous, audible from a considerable distance.


The length of the body exceeds the height at the withers. The relation between the length of the skull and that of the muzzle must be 3/2.

BEHAVIOUR / TEMPERAMENT : It is a very intelligent dog, not without beauty, whose expression manifests both these qualities. Rustic, affectionate, kind and noble, he is very determined when facing dangerous animals and in front of strangers, especially when he has the opportunity to defend and protect farms or cattle. In his behaviour, one can see it is a dog sure of himself, determining his strength because he is aware of his enormous power.

HEAD : Big, strong and shaped like a truncated pyramid with broad basis. The whole of the skull and muzzle, seen from above, must be square and well linked, without a very marked diminution of width between the base of the muzzle and the temporal bones. The facio-cranial axes are moderately divergent.


Skull : Broad, strong, profile sub-convex. The width of the skull should be equal or superior to its length. Frontal sinus accentuated. Occipital crest marked.
Stop : Slightly sloping, not very accentuated.


Nose : Black, wet, big and broad.
Muzzle : Straight nasal bridge. Seen from above, the muzzle appears moderately rectangular, tapering gradually in width towards the nose, but still keeping an appreciable width. In no case it should be pointed.
Lips : The upper lip largely covering the lower lip; the lower lip with slak mucous membranes forms a very loose labial commissure. The mucous membranes must be black.
Jaws/Teeth : Scissor bite. Teeth white, solid and sound. Big, pointed canines assuring a good hold of prey. Molars solid and powerful. Incisors rather small. All premolars should be present. Palate black, with well marked ridges.
Eyes : Small in comparison with the skull, almond shaped, preferably dark, of hazel colour. The look is attentive, noble, soft and intelligent, very hard in front of strangers. Eyelids of thick tissue, with black pigmentation. The lower lid allows a part of the conjunctiva to be seen.
Ears : Of medium size and hanging; triangular shape, flat. Attached above the eye-line. At rest, hanging close to the cheeks, without being too close to the skull. In attention, they come away from the cheeks and are partially pricked in the back part of their top third. They must not be cropt.

NECK : Trunk shaped, broad, solid, muscled, flexible. Skin thick and loose. Double dewlap amply developed.

BODY : Rectangular. Stocky and robust, showing great power; yet supple and agile. 

Topline : Straight, horizontal including while on the move.
Withers : Well marked.
Back : Powerful, muscled.
Loin : Long, broad and powerful; its dimensions decreasing down towards the flank.
Croup : Broad and solid. Its inclination to the horizontal is of some 45°. The height at the croup is equal to the height at the withers.
Chest : Broad, deep, muscled and powerful. The point of the sternum marked. Ribs with wide intercostal spaces, rounded, not flat. The minimum thoracic perimeter exceeds by about 1/3 the height at the withers.
Belly and flank : Belly very moderately tucked-up; the flank let down and very ample.

TAIL : Very thick at its root and set at medium height. Solid, supple and covered with hair longer than that of the rest of the body. At rest it is carried low, distinctly reaching the hock; sometimes forms a curve in its last quarter. When the dog is moving or animated, he will raise it sabre fashion, with a curve at its tip, but never curved in all its length nor carried over the croup.


FOREQUARTERS : Forelegs perfectly vertical, straight and parallel seen from the front. The length of the forearm should be the triple of that of the pastern (metacarpus). Bone structure solid, with powerful metacarpus.
Shoulder : Oblique, very muscular, longer than the forearm. The scapular-humeral angle is near the 100°.
Upper arm : Strong, of similar length to that of the shoulderblade.
Elbows : Close to the thorax. Humeral-radial angle close to 125°.
Forearm : Solid, with vertical bone.
Pastern : Seen from the side slightly oblique. Is pratically in the extension of the forearm. Solid bone.
Forefeet : Cat feet. Toes close, solid, well arched. Nails and pads strong and resistant. Interdigital membranes of medium development and covered with hair.

HINDQUARTERS : Powerful, muscular. Lateral view : adequate angulations in form of big articular angles. Correct limbs, seen from behind and from the side; hocks not deviated; they must be capable of transmitting the impulsion of the dog with ease, strength and elegance.

Thighs : Solid and muscular. Femoral-coxal angle nearly 100°.
Stifle : Femoral-tibial angle nearly 120°.
Lower thigh : Long, muscular, solid bone structure.
Hocks : The open angle of the hocks is nearly 130°.
Metatarsus : Well marked, with the Achilles tendon clearly visible.
Hind feet : Cat feet, very slightly oval. Dewclaws present or not, may be simple or double; their removal is permitted.

GAIT / MOVEMENT : The preferred gait is the trot, which must be harmonious, powerful and without tendency towards lateral rolling. No ambling.

SKIN : Elastic, thick, abundant and pink coloured with darker pigmented areas. All mucous membranes must be black.


HAIR : Dense, thick, medium length, smooth, distributed all over the body down to the interdigital spaces. Two types of coat are distinguished : covering coat on the back and an other protecting type on the ribcage and the flanks. Shorter on the legs, longer and silky on the tail.

COLOUR : Indifferent. The colours most appreciated being the self-coloured like yellow, fawn, red, black, wolf colour and deer-colour; also appreciated are the combined colours like brindle, parti-coloured or dogs with a white collar.

SIZE : There is no upper limit of size, the subjects of greatest size being the ones most highly thought after providing they are of harmonious proportions.

Height at the withers : Minimum size for males : 77 cm.
for bitches : 72 cm.
It is desirable that these measurements be amply exceded; the size in males should be over 80 cm, and in females over 75 cm.

FAULTS : Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.


  • Roman nose, without excess.
  • Pincer bite; lack of any premolar.
  • Weak lumbar-dorsal line, having lost its straight line and ondulating on the move.
  • Pasterns, rear-pasterns and feet weak, without excess.
  • Timidity, not too accentuated.


  • Exaggerated frail or lethargic appearance.
  • Pointed muzzle.
  • Moderately overshot mouth.
  • Absence of various molars or canines, not from traumatic origin.
  • Excessive entropion or ectropion.
  • Cropping of the ears.
  • Tail resting on the croup.
  • Sway back.
  • Height at the croup noticeably superior to the height at the withers.
  • Docking of the tail.
  • Incorrect legs, weak or deviated.
  • Cow-hocked either standing or moving.
  • Lateral displacement of the legs when moving.
  • Wavy coat, curly or of excessive length.
  • Unbalanced temperament, excessive timidity or exaggerated aggressiveness.


  • Aggresive or overly shy.
  • Nose or mucous membranes depigmented.
  • Split nose.
  • Undershot mouth of whatever degree; excessively overshot.
  • Light eyes.

Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.

N.B. : Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.