How Much Does an English Mastiff Eat? Guidelines to Properly Feeding Your Mastiff

The English Mastiff’s sheer size should tell you right from the first glance that he’ll need to consume a heavy quantity of food daily. This is no ordinary canine since he is genetically predisposed to have a huge build and stature. At least 6 to 10 cups of dry food will need to end up in his dog bowl to support his growth and lifestyle.

The amount largely varies on the dog’s age, energy level, and health. If you are thinking of going for this colossal breed, knowing what and how much to give will not only give him access to an enjoyable life but as well as indulge him in a mutually healthy relationship with you. So today, this article will give you the guidelines to properly feeding your Mastiff.

Feeding Guidelines for English Mastiffs

Each English Mastiff dog undergoes a series of life stages. At every level, he would typically need different things which will require either a change or an addition to the volume of dog food. Moreover, in pet quality English Mastiffs, they are also required to be spayed or neutered for regulation purposes. With that, their diet will also be significantly altered.

English Mastiff Puppy

Considered to be the primary and vital stage to healthy living, each English Mastiff puppy should be granted high-quality dog food meant for his age. It is crucial that he receives complete and balanced nutrition that is responsible for his proximal growth. 

Of course, going for an excellent dog meal isn’t enough. Every Mastiff owner should know how much to provide as well. With that, here is a simple and helpful guide you can use:

AgeNo. of Cups Daily
8-12 weeks2-4 cups
3-4 months3-6 cups
5-6 months5-8 cups
7-10 months6-9 cups
11 months onward6-10 cups

All these should be divided into four meals. Since each brand of dog food is different, always check the ingredients. Go for meat-based items and avoid chemicals, preservatives, or fillers such as wheat and corn. Puppies need a high protein intake for about 25%-27% compared to adult English Mastiffs so ensure that they get it.

Adult English Mastiff

This specifically refers to unspayed females and unneutered male English Mastiffs. They are more commonly referred to as intact dogs who have a fast metabolic rate. That means these types of dogs can be fed the standard amount of 8 to 10 cups daily. Female Mastiffs should be given a cup less since gender plays a huge role in dog size.

Despite their high metabolism, free-feeding should be a no-no. They may eat a lot and burn calories in a jiffy, but they can go out of control if there is available food in front of them all day long. Stick to the right feeding amount and divide it into 2 meals to prevent them from experiencing bloat.

Pregnant English Mastiff

If you think this large breed consumes tons of kibbles, you’ll be in for a shock once an English Mastiff gets pregnant. The size of her litter goes on both extremes from one puppy to even 16! However, the average number she can give birth to is eight.

No matter how many puppies your pet carries, it is undeniably a fact that her meal consumption will have to shift. This will aid her in producing more milk which her youngsters will need once they’re born. As a rule of thumb, she’d need an increase of about one and a half times the normal amount of food she would usually get.

Averagely, she’ll have an intake of about 9 to 12 cups of food. This will go on until her puppies start eating solid food at 4 weeks of age. The quantity needs to decrease weekly from weeks 4 to 8 so her milk production will gradually end.

Senior English Mastiff

It is common knowledge that English Mastiffs have a very short life span. Not all dogs from this breed get to experience seniority due to lots of health factors that come in the way. The best way to lengthen your bond with your big dog is to always keep the weight down.

Considering that as a dog ages and the metabolism also gets slower, your senior dog would need to consume lesser amounts. This is to prevent him from gaining more weight due to his lower activity levels. His caloric needs highly shift, so the best way to deal with it is to go for a dog food that caters to this specific age group. 

Aim to give him only 5 to 7 cups of high-quality food daily. 

Spayed/Neutered English Mastiff

Ever wondered why spayed or neutered English Mastiffs gain weight so quickly? This is because the said surgery physiologically alters the body, thus affecting their appetite and metabolism. This makes them highly prone to obesity!

These dogs are also vulnerable to hypothyroidism in which some of the symptoms include lethargy, weight gain, and lack of motivation to exercise. All these can contribute to gaining extra pounds for your dog.

To prevent this from happening, strictly stick to your dog’s feeding schedule and amount. Although he’d ask for more and seem hungry even though you just fed him, refrain from giving in to his soulful puppy eyes. Females need at least 6-7 cups only while their male counterparts can live from 7-8 cups per day.

Is It Safe to Feed a Raw Diet for My English Mastiff?

Yes, it is! However, going for this kind of diet for your English Mastiff is not as easy as throwing pieces of raw meat off the kitchen counter. This needs to be planned out in detail with the help of a dog dietary specialist. 

Nevertheless, meat and protein are great for your colossal canine. If he consumes large quantities of meat, there’s nothing for you to worry about since his stomach has the right enzymes to help him digest it. There are a variety of meats you can choose from for your dog such as chicken wings, legs, necks, pig feet, knuckles, and turkey. 

Including mackerel, chicken livers, bones, and eggs is a great decision too! Remember, at least 80% of meat should comprise your dog’s daily meal.

Top 5 Foods Your English Mastiff Should Avoid

Sometimes, we tend to find no harm in throwing off food scraps from the table for our English Mastiffs. Aside from the idea that this can lead to obesity and disrupt their excellent diets, this may also end up becoming harmful and indigestible for your doggies.  

Being aware of foods your dog must avoid will save your pocket from getting drained by medical bills. This will also lessen the chance of risking your dog’s life. So, here are the top 5 foods your English Mastiff should never consume:

  1. Avocado. This fruit contains persin which might cause diarrhea or vomiting if your dog consumes too much of it. This can be found more abundantly on the leaves, seed, and bark, so if you’re growing avocados in your garden, keep your dog away from it.
  1. Onion and Garlic. Whether it be cooked or raw, never put this in your Mastiff’s bowl. These common household ingredients can kill your dog’s red blood cells which may, in turn, cause anemia and if large amounts have been consumed, poisoning may take place.
  1. Chocolate. Although this can make any human’s mouth water, this popular food contains theobromine which is harmful to your English Mastiff. A series of health problems may show once digested such as vomiting, seizures, tremors, and even death. It will get more serious if it’s a bar of unsweetened or dark chocolate you fed him with.
  1. Sugary foods. The effect this has on people is most likely the same as with your English dog. Keeping your dog’s weight in control is a priority and sugary foods simply defy that. Moreover, too much consumption can harm his teeth, or worse, lead to diabetes.
  1. Salt. The habit of sharing potato chips with a dog can eventually cause him to become more thirsty. This may put him at risk of sodium ion poisoning in which the symptoms include depression, tremors, increase in temperature, or death.

Signs Your English Mastiff Needs a Diet

How do you know that you’re doing the right thing in feeding your English Mastiff? There sure are several indications that he’s either healthy or not. We have listed major signs to look out for!

  • If he’s oval-shaped from the top view, your Mastiff might be too fat. 
  • If his waist is hanging down instead of being slightly raised, then he’s most likely overweight.
  • His behavior shows disinclination to move as well as having trouble walking and breathing.

What Happens if I Give Him the Wrong Diet?

Aside from becoming overweight, your English Mastiff’s body will manifest various other indications that something is wrong with his food and diet. 

Commonly, the major physical sign would be a stark change in his coat’s quality. Several important nutrients like fats, vitamins, protein, and minerals largely impact the health of your dog’s overall skin and coat.

If these aren’t enough, your dog’s coat will start becoming brittle and dry. Eventually, this will cause him to shed more than usual.

Moreover, regarding excess weight, an aftereffect of it, especially if it continues, is lethargy. Even if you used to conduct regular training and exercise, your dog would find it hard to exert effort considering that he has such an enormous body to control.

Lastly would be a change in appetite. Some dogs who are fed the wrong dog food end up vomiting it or experiencing severe diarrhea. If these are exhibited by your dog every meal, inspect what you’re feeding him immediately. Don’t wait until his body lacks coordination or worse, end up experiencing seizures. 


Going for the large English Mastiff breed requires commitment and dedication. A healthy lifestyle usually starts by providing him the right meal in the right amount. The food intake of adult Mastiffs should range from 6-10 cups with puppies and nursing moms consuming more.

Always be particular when it comes to your dog’s food. If you are inclined to incorporate raw meals for your buddy, make sure that you work with a professional who knows how to tailor diet plans based on your dog’s needs.