In This Article...
- What is the Best Bullmastiff Food?
- Understanding the Diet Requirements of a Bullmastiff
- Special Diet Considerations For Bullmastiffs
- Bullmastiff Feeding Chart
- The Best 6 Bullmastiff Food Choices
- 3 Top-Rated Choices For Adult Bullmastiffs
- Top Rated Choices for Bullmastiff Puppies
- Top Rated Choices for Senior Bullmastiffs
- Bullmastiff FAQ : Feeding Questions Answered
- Q: How much food should I be feeding my Bullmastiff?
- Q: What type of food do Bullmastiffs eat?
- Q: How do I know my Bullmastiff has a food allergy?
- Q: What types of fruits vegetables should a Bullmastiff be eating?
- Q: Should I feed my Bullmastiff supplements?
- Q: How many times a day should I feed a Bullmastiff?
- Q: Do Bullmastiffs need to follow a grain-free diet?
In the early 19th-century, gamekeepers bred Bullmastiffs to scare poachers that wandered onto their lands. Since then, bullmastiffs have worked alongside police officers, soldiers, and hunters. When they aren’t working, these watchdogs are probably curled up around your feet. They might weigh as much as their human companions, but that won’t stop a bullmastiff from trying to be a lap dog.
Bullmastiffs are easily recognizable, and not just because of their massive size. With broad shoulders, black markings and a droopy, wrinkly face, you can spot a bullmastiff from a mile away. Since they have an average life span of 8 to 10 years, a high-quality diet with natural ingredients is crucial to maintaining a bullmastiff’s health.
Here’s what you’ll learn in this article:
What is the Best Bullmastiff Food?
Understanding the Diet Requirements of a Bullmastiff
Bullmastiffs need a wholesome, high-quality diet. They do need plenty of protein, but not as much as you might expect. This breed may be large, but they aren’t always active. Many bullmastiffs would rather snooze on your lap than play fetch.
Generally, bullmastiffs require diets rich in meaty proteins, leafy vegetables, fruits, and essential vitamins. Vitamin C and minerals like calcium and zinc are especially important for the overall health of a bullmastiff.
On average, this breed needs to consume around 1,770 to 2,100 calories a day, depending on their activity level. In some cases, a highly-active bullmastiff may require up to 3,000 calories a day.
It’s best to avoid bullmastiff food containing artificial preservatives or flavoring—while these additives might make the formula taste “better”, they aren’t great for a bullmastiff’s health.
Another common issue within this breed’s diet are food irritants. Some Bullmastiffs may have issues digesting gluten or grain products and may function better on a grain-free diet.
Puppy Bullmastiff Diet – Bullmastiffs grow and develop at a slower pace than many other breeds. It’s important that bullmastiff puppies consume a large-breed puppy formula that will provide them with close to 22% protein as well as higher levels of essential vitamins and minerals.
Adult Bullmastiff Diet – Many Bullmastiffs don’t reach maturity until they’re 18 months to 24 months old. In some cases, it might take them 3 years to completely finish growing. However, once your dog is fully grown, it’s time to switch them to an adult large-breed formula. Many bullmastiffs consume around 25% protein in their diets as well as plenty of fruits and veggies.
Senior Bullmastiff Diet – With a shorter life span, bullmastiffs may begin to show signs of aging around 6 to 7 years of age. At this point, it’s best to begin gradually switching to a senior formula. Many aging bullmastiffs become less active in their golden years and may only require around 18% protein.
Special Diet Considerations For Bullmastiffs
While the bullmastiff breed is typically healthy, they are prone to a few troubling health problems. While a healthy diet can’t completely prevent these issues, providing your dog with proper nutrition can lower the risk of some diseases or conditions. Here are some of the common ailments that Bullmastiffs suffer from:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
Hip dysplasia and elbow dysplasia are common problems in medium and large-breeds. Dysplasia occurs when the hip or elbow joints form abnormally. While this can happen at any point during a Bullmastiff’s life, it’s usually more noticeable as they age.
Hip and elbow dysplasia can cause your dog to have a loss of function in the affected joints. They may have trouble rising, walking up stairs and running. Without treatment, some dogs may eventually lose the ability to walk.
Allergies are an issue in all breeds, but they can be a particular problem for Bullmastiffs. It’s not unusual for a Bullmastiff to have an allergy to gluten products, or issues digesting corn, soy, and wheat. Although allergic reactions might vary from dog to dog, common symptoms include itching, diarrhea, and chronic ear infections.
Bullmastiffs are also prone to Bloat, or gastric dilation. This life-threatening condition occurs when the stomach distends with swallowed air and causes an obstruction in the stomach. If it’s severe enough, the distension may interrupt blood flow and cause tissue death.
While the cause of this condition is unknown, some experts believe that excessive exercise immediately after eating may contribute to it. It’s crucial to catch gastric dilation early—warning signs include bloating, dry-heaving, weakness and staggering.
While many of these Bullmastiff health issues aren’t preventable, obesity is. Since this breed tends to be less active, it’s easier for them to gain weight. Obesity can lead to other health concerns like joint or cardiac problems. The best way to counteract the risk of obesity is by following a feeding schedule and encouraging your dog to be more active.
Bullmastiff Feeding Chart
Speaking of feeding schedules, it’s essential to keep your Bullmastiff on a food regimen. Free feeding is not an ideal option—many dogs may overeat and gain weight or spend all day picking at their food.
Bullmastiff puppies should generally eat 3 times a day. The amount of food will vary depending on the specific brand’s feeding instructions, and your dog’s weight and age.
As they become adults, bullmastiffs can still eat 3 times a day, but many owners choose to feed them twice a day. Regardless of what you choose, these meals should be spread out—like breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Spreading out the meals will ensure your Bullmastiff is not eating too much at once.
It’s a good idea to stick to the same feeding routine so that your dog’s digestive system can adjust.
The Best 6 Bullmastiff Food Choices
|Our 2023 Picks: Bullmastiff Food Recommendations|
Now that you’ve got a deeper understanding of a Bullmastiff’s diet requirements, health issues, and feeding regimen, it’s time to find the best, high-quality bullmastiff food for your furry friend. Here are our top choices:
Based on the protein-rich diet of wolves, the Blue Buffalo Wilderness Large Breed Chicken Grain-Free recipe contains deboned chicken and L-Carnitine to help support lean muscle growth.
With plenty of glucosamine, chondroitin, and calcium, this bullmastiff food recipe is working hard to improve your dog’s joint health. For bullmastiffs that may struggle with arthritis or hip dysplasia, this formula might be an ideal choice. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids will also help promote healthier skin and a shinier coat of fur.
The added antioxidants can boost your dog’s immune system, and lower the risk of infection. It’s also grain-free and doesn’t contain common food irritants like corn, soy or wheat.
- Supports lean muscle growth
- Glucosamine, chondroitin, and calcium promote better joint health
- Contains antioxidants to boost the immune system
- Grain-free recipe
- Bullmastiffs that have issues digesting chicken might not react well to this formula
- Less active dogs may not need this much protein (32% protein and 13% fat)
The American Journey Large Breed Salmon & Sweet Potato Grain-Free recipe contains all the benefits of a high-quality, natural diet at an affordable cost. Not only is this formula chock-full of omega-3 and omega-6, but it also contains DHA, a fatty acid that helps promote brain and eye development.
Along with deboned salmon, there’s also plenty of nutrient-rich fruits and veggies like carrots, blueberries and dried kelp. These ingredients boost your dog’s immune system and support their overall health.
This recipe might be perfect for a Bullmastiff that has digestion issues. The formula contains higher levels of fiber and steers clear of grain products like corn, soy, and wheat that may irritate sensitive stomachs.
- Nutrient-rich fruits and veggies support various parts of your dog’s health
- Antioxidants boost the immune system
- Easily-digestible and free of corn, soy, and wheat
- DHA promotes cognitive development
- Does not contain as much fiber as some other brands
- Not ideal for dogs that are sensitive to salmon or potatoes
Another grain-free option is the Merrick Grain-Free Real Chicken + Sweet Potato recipe. This formula uses real chicken and contains plenty of nutritious fruits and veggies like sweet potatoes, apples, and peas.
With high levels of protein, this may be a great choice for active Bullmastiffs. The added glucosamine and chondroitin help ensure your dog’s joint health so that they’re able to be as active as they want to be. For better skin health and a shinier coat, there’s plenty of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in this recipe.
- Glucosamine and chondroitin help increase mobility and lower the risk of joint and bone-related conditions
- Contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids
- High levels of protein (38% protein and 17% fat)
- May be too protein-rich for less active dogs
- Low levels of fiber
If you really want to guarantee that your dog is eating a high-quality diet, Ollie is a delivery service that ships personalized meals to your house. Their popular recipes center around different meat choices like turkey, beef and chicken.
With Ollie, you can adjust the Bullmastiff food based on the breed’s individual needs. Ollie works with a veterinarian to ensure that each meal will meet your dog’s nutritional requirements, and the ingredients are all-natural.
There are no artificial flavors or fillers in these meals, and the chicken and beef come from human-grade farms in the US.
- No artificial flavors or fillers
- Minimal processing
- Meals are freshly made by humans
- All-natural ingredients
- Personalized, adjustable meals
- Less affordable
- May not deliver to all areas
Best For Bullmastiffs With Sensitive Stomachs
For Bullmastiffs with sensitive stomachs, this holistic recipe might be just what they need. With 20 different superfoods chock-full of vitamins, this formula supports your dog’s overall health.
The real, grass-fed lamb has plenty of iron to boost muscle health and is easy on the stomach. The healthy, monounsaturated fats come from natural sources like canola oil and salmon oil and help promote better skin health.
This recipe is also free of common allergens like corn, soy or wheat that may cause a negative reaction in your dog. With only 22% protein, this formula is a great pick for less active Bullmastiffs.
- Great for sensitive stomachs
- Made with real, grass-fed lamb that supports muscle health
- Contains 20 nutrient-rich superfoods that are chock-full of essential vitamins
- Doesn’t contain corn, soy or wheat
- Highly active dogs may require more protein than what’s in this bullmastiff food
- Not a great choice for dogs that have issues digesting lamb or salmon
3 Top-Rated Choices For Adult Bullmastiffs
With 3 different protein sources, the Nutro Ultra Large Breed recipe has something for every dog out there. These include pasture-fed lamb, farm-raised chicken and real salmon—all of which are chock-full of amino acids.
The naturally-sourced glucosamine and chondroitin help support better joint health and cartilage, and Sunflower oil help keeps your dog’s coat shiny. The natural antioxidant, Taurine, promotes healthier eyesight and hearing.
There are no artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors added to this product, and the manufacturer makes it in their own facilities to guarantee safety and quality.
- 3 different protein sources ensure a range of amino acids
- Taurine promotes eyesight and hearing
- Sunflower oil keeps your Bullmastiff’s coat shiny and healthy
- Glucosamine and chondroitin support joint and cartilage health
- No artificial flavoring, colors, or preservatives
- Made in the manufacturer’s facility
- Not grain-free
- Only contains 22% protein
This multi-protein recipe is perfect for dogs of all sizes—including the Bullmastiff. The main sources of protein include real turkey, salmon, duck, and lamb from all over the world. There’s also plenty of wholesome veggies like chickpeas and peas that provide fiber and powerful antioxidants.
With Vitamin B12, Riboflavin, Selenium, Thiamin and Niacin, this recipe is full of essential vitamins and minerals that will support your Bullmastiff’s overall health. It’s also free of common irritants like corn, soy, wheat, chicken and dairy that may cause an allergic reaction in your dog.
- High in protein, but low in saturated fats (32% protein and 16% fat)
- A great source of essential vitamins and minerals like B12, Riboflavin, and Thiamin
- Doesn’t contain other common irritants like chicken or dairy products
- May not be ideal for dogs that are sensitive to duck, lamb or turkey
- A less active Bullmastiff might not require this much protein
With lamb and roasted lamb, the Taste of the Wild Sierra Mountain Grain-Free recipe might be all it takes to get your Bullmastiff’s mouthwatering. Not only does it contain lean protein, but it’s also full of easily-digestible sweet potatoes and added vitamins.
This might be the right choice for Bullmastiffs with sensitive stomachs. This formula steers clear of common food irritants, and contains dried chicory root to aid in digestion. It also includes a K9 probiotic strain for a little extra help.
- Easily digestible
- Doesn’t contain artificial flavors or preservatives
- A great source of lean protein
- Includes powerful antioxidants and added vitamins
- Made by a family-owned company that ensures the product’s safety and quality
- Dogs that are sensitive to lamb or lamb products might not react well
- Highly active Bullmastiffs may need more protein (contains 25% protein)
Top Rated Choices for Bullmastiff Puppies
|Our 2023 Picks: Bullmastiff Puppy Food Recommendations|
For growing Bullmastiff puppies, meeting their nutritional needs is crucial. The Nulo FreeStyle Grain-Free Turkey & Sweet Potato Recipe does just that—not only does it get 80% of its protein from real meat, but it also contains plenty of DHA to support your puppy’s cognitive development.
The extra calcium and phosphorous will support the slow-growing Bullmastiff and reduce the risk of bone conditions like hip dysplasia and arthritis. Since it’s grain-free, you won’t need to worry about negative reactions your puppy might have to corn, soy, or wheat products.
- Added calcium and phosphorous to promote strong bones and healthy teeth
- Low-glycemic index ingredients lower the risk of high blood sugar
- Contains DHA and Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids
- Might not be best for puppies that are sensitive to turkey, chicken, or salmon
- Less affordable
For Bullmastiff puppies with a sensitive digestive tract, this grain-free recipe might be an ideal choice. The formula contains high levels of protein from real, deboned chicken, and added DHA to help promote healthy cognitive development.
Extra vitamins and minerals like calcium, phosphorous and glucosamine ensure that your Bullmastiff is growing up healthy and strong. By testing and making the product in their own facilities, the manufacturer can also guarantee its safety and quality.
- Contains higher levels of calcium, phosphorous and glucosamine
- Easily digestible
- DHA promotes brain and eye development
- Contains the common irritant, chicken, as a protein source
- No probiotic support
Instinct by Nature’s Variety Raw Boost Large Breed Puppy Grain-Free recipe is all about using real, raw meat for better nutrition. With both bite-sized kibble and freeze-dried pieces of raw meat, this recipe uses cage-free chicken as their first ingredient. Other protein sources include a nutritious balance of poultry for additional amino acids and antioxidants.
There are no common irritants like corn, soy, wheat, or potatoes in this formula, but there is plenty of natural DHA to promote your puppy’s brain and eye development as they grow. For healthy skin and shinier coat of fur, there are Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.
There’s no reason to worry about artificial flavors, preservatives, colors, or fillers here—this product is all-natural, and uses wholesome ingredients.
- Freeze-dried raw meat boosts nutrition and taste
- Uses cage-free chicken as the very first ingredient
- Free of common food irritants
- Includes essential vitamins and minerals like calcium and phosphorous
- Contains Omega-3, Omega-6, and DHA fatty acids
- No artificial flavors or preservatives
- Some puppies may be sensitive to chicken and turkey
- Picky eaters might not like the mixed-in dried raw meat
Top Rated Choices for Senior Bullmastiffs
|Our 2023 Picks: Bullmastiff Food Recommendations for Seniors|
As your Bullmastiff ages, their core nutritional needs may shift. The Wellness Complete Health Senior Deboned Chicken & Barley recipe is designed for older dogs with changing activity levels.
By using chicken as its primary protein source, this formula includes plenty of glucosamine and chondroitin to support healthier bones and joints. Some older Bullmastiffs might have issues with odor in their stool, but this recipe counteracts that problem by adding Yucca Schidigera extract to their formula.
Speaking of extracts, there’s also green tea extract to help prevent cell destruction and free radicals in your Bullmastiff. The taurine in this recipe promotes a healthier heart and may help lower the risk of cardiac problems in aging dogs.
While it isn’t grain-free, the Wellness Complete Health Senior Deboned Chicken & Barley recipe does steer clear of ingredients like corn, soy, or wheat that can cause digestive issues or allergic reactions.
- Avoids common allergens like corn, soy, and wheat
- Contains ingredients like green tea extract, Taurine, and Yucca Schidigera Extract
- Includes higher levels of chondroitin and glucosamine for better joint and bone health
- May help less active seniors maintain a healthy weight
- Contains the common food allergen, chicken, as a primary source of protein
- Not grain-free
As a reputable brand, Blue Buffalo has the perfect formula for senior Bullmastiffs to munch on. This recipe uses real, deboned chicken, brown rice and a variety of garden fruits and vegetables to support the overall health of your Bullmastiff.
Along with high levels of protein, this formula also includes L-Carnitine for healthy muscle growth so that your aging dog can stay active throughout their golden years. This might be a great choice for Bullmastiffs that suffer from arthritis or joint issues—the recipe is full of glucosamine and chondroitin.
Senior Bullmastiffs, like any aging dog, may be prone to infections. With extra vitamins and chelated minerals, there’s plenty of antioxidants to boost your dog’s immune system, and lower the risk of them getting sick.
Although not completely grain-free, the Blue Buffalo Life Protection Senior Chicken & Brown Rice recipe doesn’t contain problematic ingredients like corn, soy or wheat.
- Includes Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids for skin and coat health
- Glucosamine and chondroitin promotes stronger bones, joints and cartilage
- Boosts the immune system
- No corn, soy or wheat added
- Not completely grain-free
- Some older Bullmastiffs may be sensitive to chicken or rice
Bullmastiff FAQ : Feeding Questions Answered
While knowing more about the best bullmastiff food out there is helpful, it might not answer every question you have about your dog’s nutritional requirements. Fortunately, you don’t need to wonder any longer—here are some of the most common questions Bullmastiff owners want the answers to:
Q: How much food should I be feeding my Bullmastiff?
A: Since most Bullmastiff food doesn’t come premeasured; you might not be sure how much you need to feeding your furry friend. The good news is that you don’t need to guess. Any brand you buy will also come with feeding instructions, and some Bullmastiff food may even include its own measuring cup.
Since every dog is different, the amount of food might vary based on your dog’s activity level and weight. If you follow these directions closely, you shouldn’t need to worry about overfeeding or underfeeding your dog.
However, if you do notice that your pup is losing or gaining too much weight, it might be time to reassess the quantity of Bullmastiff food they’re getting.
Q: What type of food do Bullmastiffs eat?
A: The biggest issues you’ll face when feeding your Bullmastiff food are allergies and sensitive stomachs. While any Bullmastiff should be eating a natural, high-quality diet, not all of them will react positively to the same ingredients. The most common irritants for Bullmastiffs tend to be grain products and certain protein sources like chicken and poultry.
Generally, most Bullmastiffs do enjoy freeze-dried raw meat or high-quality kibbles. It’s always best to combine a real meat protein source with a variety of vitamin-packed fruits and veggies.
Q: How do I know my Bullmastiff has a food allergy?
A: Allergies can pop up in a variety of forms, and it can be difficult to know whether or not your Bullmastiff is allergic to their food or another part of their environment. If you begin to notice gastrointestinal problems, chronic ear infections or diarrhea, it’s a likely sign that your Bullmastiff is suffering from a food allergy.
However, before you begin switching out their food, it’s best to talk to your vet so that you can be sure their symptoms aren’t related to another health issue. Once you know what ingredient is causing the issue, you can work on finding Bullmastiff food that doesn’t contain it.
Q: What types of fruits vegetables should a Bullmastiff be eating?
A: While many fruits and veggies are beneficial, some may be more important than others. These include:
- Sweet potatoes
Fruits like pumpkin can help aid in the flow of digestion, and leafy green veggies usually contain plenty of antioxidants and essential vitamins.
Q: Should I feed my Bullmastiff supplements?
A: In many cases, Bullmastiffs, especially those that suffer from health issues, can benefit from the added nutrients of a supplement. It’s not uncommon for Bullmastiffs to take glucosamine or calcium supplements.
That being said, it’s important to speak with a veterinarian about your Bullmastiff’s specific dietary needs before you add a supplement to their diet. Your furry friend might already be eating enough of the substance and might not need a supplement.
Unless a veterinarian recommends it for your dog, you don’t want to add a Vitamin C supplement to their diet—too much of this vitamin can cause serious issues in a Bullmastiff.
Q: How many times a day should I feed a Bullmastiff?
A: Some Bullmastiff food might include directions about feeding times, but it’s generally a good idea to split your dog’s daily food intake into two or three meals a day. Spreading out feeding times is also important to make sure your Bullmastiff doesn’t end up overeating or picking at their food throughout the day.
Many owners follow a breakfast, lunch and dinner feeding regimen. Not only does this sufficiently spread meals out, but it allows a Bullmastiff’s digestive system to adjust to a regular schedule.
It’s important to make sure that, whenever you feed them, your Bullmastiff doesn’t immediately exercise afterward. Excessive exercise directly after a meal can contribute to gastric dilation, a serious health condition.
Q: Do Bullmastiffs need to follow a grain-free diet?
A: There’s a lot of controversy surrounding the use of grain-free diets in Bullmastiffs. While grain-free diets help reduce the possibility of allergic reactions or digestive issues, they aren’t a requirement. However, many Bullmastiffs do have problems with grain products like corn, soy and wheat, and many benefits from following a grain-free diet.
If you find that your Bullmastiff has issues with grain products or is just a picky eater, it might be time to gradually switch them to a grain-free recipe.