What is a Midgard Mastiff?
A Midgard Mastiff is a line of hybrid working mastiffs that has blood from both bull and mastiff breeds, and has been bred for athleticism, performance, and working ability.
Do they have papers?
There are organizations that paper Midgards, but unless you compete in dog shows, there really is no point to dog papers. These aren’t show dogs they’re working dogs.
What is a working dog?
A working dog is a dog bred to do a job other than hunting. This includes pulling, guarding, herding, search and rescue, and any other job that we need from them. Like the original Mastiffs Midgards are bred for protection and hunting dangerous game like wild boar.
Is working a dog abuse?
A well bred working dog will love his job, working will be a part of his nature. Working breeds really need to work to feel fulfilled. Denying a working dog the chance to work causes frustration, and can cause behavioral problems (chewing, etc). I’d consider not working a working dog abuse before I’d consider it abuse to let him do the work he was born for.
How do I know if a Midgard is right for me?
If you are a capable dog owner, have adequate facilities, follow up on your responsibilities and have anything or anyone worth protecting, a Midgard is right for you.
What are your dogs like?
I breed for, tall, muscular, healthy, clean, protective, family oriented, driven, agile, tough, intelligent, and beautiful. Things I don’t like in a dog are dog aggression, instability, unsoundness, roaminess, rankiness. To me a guard dog should be large and frightening enough to deter most threats, and powerful and driven enough to handle the rest. He should always want to be by your side, that’s a guard dog’s place. With proper socialization, he should be accepting of any dog or person he meets who is acting normally, and should naturally show aggression to any person showing aggression, fearfulness, or any other suspicious behavior.
Why Bulldog and Mastiff?
In general, bulldogs have lots of prey drive, but low defense drives, mastiffs have lots of defense drive, but low prey drive. The goal is to create a dog with both high prey and defense drive, this makes for a very forward, aggressive, protector. Also, bulldogs have a higher strength to weight ratio than mastiffs and mastiffs have much higher weight, put together well and you get and incredibly large, powerful, and agile dog. Those two groups are descended from a common ancestor, and between the two populations the genes that made the original Mastiffs great still exist. They are just mixed in with a lot of garbage traits, and needed to be brought back together and the garbage filtered out to recreate the mastiff as it was before they were bred for fashion.
Are Midgards Bandogs?
Like many breeds Midgards are bandogs. Bandog or bandogge is not a breed it is a job description like saying hunting dog, sled dog, or guard dog. Any dog who does that job is a bandog, whatever the breed. Just like a Greyhound can be a hunting dog or a Beagle can be a hunting dog, a Midgard can be a bandog or a Presa can be a bandog.
Why are they called bandogs?
The name bandog goes back to the 1200’s at least. It’s a combination of the Saxon word “banda” meaning band, strap, rope, chain, and the french word dogge meaning powerful dog or mastiff. Dogge is actually the root of the word dog, before then the word was hund. The bandogge was a “chained mastiff” because they were chained during the day and released at night to guard the property. To quote Shakespeare’s “Henry the Sixth”:
Is it expensive to keep a mastiff?
There was a study done by a British insurance company that offers pet insurance link. They found the most expensive breed by far is the Chihuahua. Costing 7,000 euro more than a mastiff over it’s lifetime and 55,000 euro more than a bulldog. Plus these numbers are based on pure/inbred dogs. Hybrid dogs are much healthier, so they cost much less in vet bills. I like to look at the value of a dog by comparing the costs to the benefits. For example the Chihuahua very high cost £88,691 on average, only contributes companionship to the family. A good working Mastiff however costs radically less and not only contributes companionship, but also protection with zero response time (no PD in the world can match that), and any other job you can give them. I even use mine as draft animals. However, if your unable or unwilling to pay for the care of a dog you shouldn’t get one.
Should I get my Midgard trained in personal protection work?
I personally think any dog intended to guard a family needs PP training. There are many people who feel a guard dog should protect on instinct alone. While that is the cheaper route, that’s like hiring a bodyguard with no training to protect on instinct. A dog must be bred for the work, but to do his best he needs training – real professional training. A fully trained PP dog will have many advantages over an untrained aggressive dog. The first is control. When the dog reacts to a noise at the door you will have commands that will tell the dog to react aggressively or to calm down and let them enter. The dog’s aggression will be something you can turn on or off. If the dog does have to bite someone you will have commands to release the person, hold the person, or bite them if they move. You’ll be able to pick the dog’s target on the body, arm, leg, groin, shoulder, etc. The dog will know how to target around a weapon so it doesn’t hurt its teeth and still gets control of the weapon. He will learn how to use every natural weapon he has to the best of his ability. Think of it as martial arts training for your dog.
Will PP training make my dog mean?
Real PP training should teach your dog to be watchful but calm and friendly until commanded otherwise. Too many people think to train a dog to protect you have to “make him mean”. This usually involves abusing a dog until it becomes a fear biter which just means he’s so terrified of everyone that he will bite anyone. That’s not PP training, that’s animal abuse. It will turn your guard dog into a dangerous liability for everyone, including your family. A well bred guard dog will bite to protect himself, his family, and his home, that’s not something you’ll have to make him do. PP training teaches when, where, and how to bite.
Are they safe around kids?
This is the reason I breed Mastiffs and not rottweilers or shepherds. They are much safer around kids and family than dogs bred to have a high “rank drive”. Rank drive is the desire to have a high social status. Rank aggression is the will to fight for social status. This is one of the primary aggressive drives for rottweilers and shepherds. If the dog feels his rank has been challenged he’s apt to attack even his family, or if he feels you’re showing weakness he’s apt to attack you to challenge your rank. That works fine for a police or military dog, not the family guard dog. The other problem with rank based aggression is if the dog feels he can’t dominate the target he’s apt to give up, hence the term rank cur. Again not a very good guard dog. Midgards are typically bred to work out of prey and defense drive. Prey drive is the desire to hunt and kill prey, defense drive is the desire to protect his pack and home from danger. Working in a combination of these two drives makes for a dog who is willing to kill or die to protect his family. Midgards are also bred to have a high pack drive – the desire to be with his family. It’s not very useful to have a guard dog that’s out roaming the neighborhood when you need him. A guard dog’s place is in the house with the family he’s supposed to protect. I breed for trustworthiness before anything else. For more info on rank and defense see my article here
Are they good with other pets?
Like any dog with prey drive they will have to be trained not to chase cats and other prey animals if that’s not something you want. As far as other dogs I breed mine not to be dog aggressive, but they won’t back down from a fight so if the other dog likes to start fights they will step up, but are typically very social especially with other dogs in their pack. It’s not very useful to have a guard dog who has to work alone. A pack of guard dogs is much more powerful than a single individual. That said not every dog I produce is going to live up to this ideal, but there are usually signs from an early age that can help me place that dog in single dog homes.
I really like my well trained Midgard. Where can I show him off?
The venue of choice for showing off the greatness of your Midgard Mastiff will be a working trial, a pulling competition, or on the street. One of my favorite places is Petsmart, they always draw a crowd.
Should a Midgard have cropped or natural ears?
There is no standard, some people like cut ears some like natural. Personally I make my judgments on a dog by dog basis, on what I think will look and work best for each dog. When I do crop a dogs ears I like a working crop, it’s a longer crop with fuller sides. It gives the dog full control of its ears, it can point them forward, backward, or sideways and even fold them back and down. That crop gives a floppy eared dog as close to natural standing ears as it can get, and better directional sound collection, so better hearing. Kronos has working cropped ears.
What about docked tails?
Again it’s a matter of preference on a big, long bodied dog the tail provides a useful counter balance, but it also stings like a whip on a dog this size, and can knock things over on a tall inside dog. Personally I like my dogs as agile as possible so I leave the tails.
What are the Special Projects?
That is a secret project we’re working on at the moment that will be unveiled to the public in mid-late 2016 if everything goes right.
If you would like to ask a question not on the FAQ submit it below or email MidgardKennels@gmail.com