Updated 02-09-2023

Dogue de Bordeaux

The most well-known representative of this breed appeared alongside Tom Hanks in the film Turner and Hooch (1989). The Dogue de Bordeaux is a breed of dog that needs extensive training and socialisation because it is loyal, confident, and territorial.

The DDB, as they're commonly called, are easily recognisable by their enormous heads. And there can be drools dripping from their mouths, too. These dogs have the potential to scare off intruders, and they will respond to the call to protect their families and homes with the utmost seriousness. However, in most cases, these puppies retain their placid natures and friendly personalities.

Just don't fall for it. Due to their independent nature, owners of this breed should have plenty of experience with pets and be committed to constant training. If you're successful, you'll gain a devoted friend. Complete list of Dogue de Bordeaux traits is provided below!


  • French in origin, the Dogue de Bordeaux is a mastiff.
  • If socialised properly, the Dogue de Bordeaux can get along with other dogs and cats. However, he has a high hunt drive and may chase animals who wander onto his land.
  • The Dogue's delicate, short hair covers its thick, slack skin. His mane can range from pale fawn to deep crimson, and he may wear a black or brown mask.


Social Appearance 


It's a common misconception that a little dog is better suited to living in a limited space. Many tiny dogs have too much energy and are too yappy to live in an apartment building. An apartment dog's best attributes include being quiet, low energy, somewhat peaceful indoors, and respectful to the other inhabitants. Your dog's personal space in your apartment can be improved by purchasing one of these fantastic dog cages.

Sensitivity Level

Depending on the dog, a strong rebuke can be taken in stride by some, while others regard even the tiniest hint of disapproval as a personal attack. If you have a loud or pushy owner, a chaotic home, or a routine that is unpredictable or variable, your low-sensitivity dog, often known as "easy-going," "tolerant," "resilient," or even "thick-skinned," will be able to handle it better. Do you have young children, host a lot of parties, or have a hectic lifestyle? Choose a dog that isn't overly sensitive.


You can't tell from looking at them whether or not they're hyperactive, but when they do anything, they do it vigorously. They tug at their leashes (unless you teach them not to), they push their way through barriers, and they down their meals in huge, gobbling gulps. A home with young children or an elderly or feeble person may not be the best place for these dynamos to learn proper etiquette. On the other side, a dog with poor vitality adopts a more reserved demeanor.

Potential for Playfulness

The playful nature of certain dogs never fades away, and they're always ready for a game, whereas the reserved and serious tendencies of other dogs develop through time. Think about how many times a day you want to play fetch or tag with your dog, and whether or not you have children or other dogs who can act as substitutes.

Personality Appearance


In the same way as working dogs, such as those that herd sheep, are bred for intelligence and decision-making, working dogs like those who run all day need to exercise their bodies. The two most common activities that a bored pet engages in are digging and chewing, both of which require mental stimulation. There are several ways to keep a dog's brain active, including obedience training, interactive dog toys like tug of war, and dog sports like agility and search and rescue.

Energy Level

Energy-draining dogs are always on the lookout for a new activity. There are several jobs that require a lot of stamina from dogs, such as herding livestock or recovering prey for hunters. Children are more likely to engage in activities such as jumping, playing and exploring new sights and smells as a result of this change in their environment

A low-energy dog is more like a couch potato than a dog that needs a lot of exercise. Think about your level of physical activity and whether or not you find a hyperactive dog irritating before making your final choice.

Easy To Train

Easy to train dogs can more easily form associations between a cue (like "sit"), an action (like sitting), and a reward than dogs that are more difficult to train. Dogs that require more time, patience, and repetition are more difficult to train.

Getting your dog interested in training will require incentives and games because many breeds are intelligent but have a "What's in it for me?" mentality when it comes to learning new things.

Family Affection Level

Affectionate With Family

Since puppyhood, some breeds remain aloof and independent; others form deep bonds with one individual but are uninterested in the rest of the family; still other types shower their entire family with affection. Canines raised in homes with people tend to be more open to human interaction and develop stronger ties, regardless of their breed or upbringing.


Kids-friendly dogs are calm, strong enough to bear the hefty hugs and pets kids can dish out, and have an unfazed attitude about rushing, scream-inducing children. There are several names you may not expect to see on the list: Fierce-looking Both Boxers and American Staffordshire Terriers are regarded as family dogs (which are considered Pit Bulls). Chihuahuas, which are small, sensitive, and potentially sharp, are not always family-friendly.

Dog Friendly

Dog friendship and human friendship are two entirely different things. The fact that a dog is friendly with humans doesn't mean it's immune to aggression or aggression from other dogs; some canines choose to play rather than fight; others will just run away. The type of animal isn't the only consideration. Dogs who have spent a lot of time playing with their littermates and their mother at the age of six to eight weeks are more likely to be socially competent.

Physical Appearance

Amount of Shedding

Having a dog in the house means that you'll have to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothing and in the home. It's worth noting, however, that shedding varies widely among breeds. Some dogs shed all year long, while others ``blow" just during specific times of the year, and still others don't shed at all. If you're a stickler for cleanliness, you'll need to choose a breed that sheds less or lower your expectations. You can use a deshedding tool to keep your house a little cleaner.

Drooling Potential

While greeting you, some dogs may cover their arms with ropes of drool and create large, wet patches on your clothing. If you don't mind a little drool, go for it; but if you're a stickler for cleanliness, you may want to look for a dog with a low drool rating.

Easy To Groom

Some breeds of dogs can simply be brushed and left alone, while others require frequent washing, trimming, and other grooming in order to maintain their health and appearance. If you don't have the time or money to take care of a dog that requires a lot of grooming, you may want to look into hiring a professional.

Exercise Needs

Evening walks around the neighbourhood are perfectly acceptable for some breeds. Others, particularly those trained for physically demanding vocations like herding or hunting, require regular, rigorous exercise.

They can gain weight and release their pent-up energy in ways you don't like, including barking, chewing, and digging, if not given enough exercise. Those looking to train their dog for an energetic canine activity, such as agility, should consider getting a dog that needs a lot of exercise.

Average sizes and life expectancy of the breed


Starts at 100 pounds


8 to 12 years


23 to 27 inches tall at the shoulder


Dogs like the Mastiff, Bullmastiff, and Neapolitan Mastiff can all trace their ancestry back to the Dogue de Bordeaux. He has likely been around for at least 600 years in France. The dogs were used as watchdogs and for hunting boar and other large wildlife. They enjoyed life up until the French Revolution, when it is likely that being associated with the nobility contributed to their deaths. Many more were rehomed on farms or butcher shops.

Though the first Dogue was seen at a dog exhibition in Paris in 1863, the breed didn't have its own standard created until 1896. The name "Dogue" was given to the breed since it was thought to have originated in the Bordeaux area of France. Today's society refers to him simply as "the DDB." It is also known as the French Mastiff or the Bordeaux dog.

Although the first Dogue was brought to America in 1959, it wasn't until the 1990s, when he played a pivotal role in the Tom Hanks comedy "Turner and Hooch," that the DDB became widely known. Registration with the American Kennel Club began for this breed in 2008, and as of right now, it stands at number 68 in popularity.

Personality & Temperament

The breed is well-known for its devoted and protective disposition toward its owners, but also for its vigilance and wariness around unfamiliar people. It's not safe to leave some people who have a high prey drive around cats unless they've been raised around them since they were puppies.

The Dogue de Bordeaux has a strong and tenacious attitude, and adolescent dogs will test limits during adolescence in an effort to establish their place in the household hierarchy. The owner must have the self-assurance to confidently and assertively cope with any obstacles posed by the huge youngster.

When raised with this kind of authoritative figure, the breed flourishes into a dedicated, loyal adult. The Dogue de Bordeaux is the most relaxed dog you could ever imagine, and it loves nothing more than to spend the day sleeping in odd spurts.

But the moment the doorbell rings, all peace and quiet is shattered, since this breed will always rush to meet any danger ahead of its owner. Aggression toward humans and other dogs is widespread, thus they need to be socialised and trained to manage their inherent protective impulses.


A Dogue de Bordeaux's natural inclination may be to pursue and kill small creatures like cats. It's also possible that this breed is incompatible with having another dog in the house, particularly one of the same sex. Though early socialisation and training can reduce the likelihood of future issues, it may not be enough to completely eliminate the danger.


Though it's to be anticipated that all huge breed dogs have a relatively short lifespan, the Dogue de Bordeaux is especially unlucky in this regard, with many only making it to the age of five or six before passing away from a fatal illness.

Also, problems with suffocation and crushing injuries, which are common in huge dogs, are exacerbated in this breed by the large litter sizes that are so common. The following is a summary of some of the more typical Dogue de Bordeaux health issues.

Aortic Stenosis

The aortic valve is a significant valve in the cardiovascular system that directs blood from the venous to arterial system. Those born with aortic stenosis have an abnormal constriction of the artery leading from the heart to the rest of the body.

Especially during physical activity, this causes the heart to work harder, increasing intracardiac pressure and reducing blood flow out of the heart. A murmur should be detectable in affected puppies with a thorough veterinarian examination, though more testing is needed to determine prognosis. In the absence of surgery, many dogs with aortic stenosis do not make it to adulthood.

Cruciate Ligament Rupture

Cruciate ligaments are important tissues in the knee joint that provide full flexion and extension and prevent instability. Due to their large size, many Dogues experience a rupture of one or both ligaments during regular exercise, necessitating surgical intervention to delay the onset of osteoarthritis and chronic discomfort.


Diffuse hair loss, scabbing, and itching are symptoms of Demodex mite infestation, to which the breed is genetically predisposed. While current antiparasitic treatments have made this a fairly treatable ailment, affected dogs still need to be treated on a regular basis (every 1-3 months, depending on the product) for the rest of their lives.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy

Disease affecting the heart muscle that causes the cardiac walls to become weak and scarred. This, in turn, causes the heart to enlarge and strain, which worsens its ability to pump blood and slows overall circulation and causes fluid retention. The illness can emerge even in young adults, with indicators of exercise intolerance, fainting, coughing, and abdominal bloating the most typical signs.


The outward rolling of the eyelids seen in some dogs puts them at risk for ocular discomfort and infection. While severe cases may necessitate surgery, mild ones may heal on their own.


As a disease characterised by fits of convulsions and temporary unconsciousness, epilepsy is genetically predisposing in some dogs of this breed. Dogs with more than one seizure episode per month are likely to begin on long-term anti-epileptic medication if a diagnosis is made after all other possible causes of seizures have been ruled out.

Footpad Hyperkeratosis

Some Dogue de Bordeaux families appear to be predisposed to this disorder. By 6 months of age, the pads of the foot have already begun to develop excessive "horns" of hard tissue.

This may progress to the point of giving discomfort to the dog when walking. It may be necessary to have a veterinarian remove the extra keratin in certain circumstances. Though topical emollients may help soften the sores and lessen irritation, there is yet no cure.


Overheating is a common problem in this breed because of its brachycephalic conformation (short nose). Dogues de Bordeaux should not be overexerted during the summer, should always have access to water, and should never be left in a car in direct sunlight to prevent brain damage or death from hyperthermia.

Recommended Health Tests 

  1. Hip Evaluation
  2. Elbow Evaluation
  3. Cardiac Exam
  4. Shoulder Evaluation


The recommended daily amount of dry food for an adult dog is four to seven cups, which should be fed in two equal portions throughout the day. It's important to prevent bloat and stomach torsion by preventing your dog from eating too much at once. Dogs should be fed twice daily, and between one and two hours should pass before they are allowed to play or eat again. Maintain a constant supply of pure water.

You may need to give a specific diet for this breed because of its susceptibility to food allergies, particularly to wheat. Commercially available large breed dog meals of high quality do not contain wheat, which is a blessing.

A male adult can use a 50-pound bag of dry dog food in a month, which can add up to a significant monthly expense. If you notice your dog putting on weight, talk to your vet about making adjustments to your dog's food, feeding schedule, or exercise requirements.


The coat on a Dogue de Bordeaux is extremely short and velvety, thus it rarely needs grooming. Grooming mitts or gloves used on occasion should be all that's needed for maintaining the coat.

But the dogue's face does need regular washing to keep the skin folds from getting infected or irritating the dog. To help your dog adjust to the inevitable regular grooming that would be required given its massive size, start the process as soon as possible. It is important to prevent dental disease in the dogue by brushing its teeth regularly (daily, if possible). It is nevertheless important to keep an eye on your dogue's nails and trim them as needed, as natural wear and tear can shorten them. A dog's coat should be kept clean and odor-free with only occasional bathing.


Dogue de Bordeaux dogs are moderately active for their size and benefit greatly from regular exercise. Along with training, regular exercise is also crucial. Even if you only have time for a half-hour walk each day, that's better than nothing. Do not overdo it, as this huge breed dog may have a predisposition toward orthopaedic issues. Pace yourself comfortably when walking the dog.

It's important to remember that dogues, like other brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds, may have heat exhaustion or difficulty breathing in hot weather. Assess your dog's stamina to know how far you can push him. If this giant dog can't handle a short walk, don't expect to be able to bring it home with you.


Untrained, a dog of this size can be completely out of control. Initiating a vigorous training programme as soon as feasible after acquiring a Dogue is essential. Communication with others is crucial as well. The enormous size of the breed plays a role in this.

Children and Other Pets

When properly introduced to other canines at an early age, most Dogues get along just fine with their canine counterparts. The intense hunting drive of many Dogue de Bordeaux makes it unwise to house them alongside cats or other small animals.


They have a lot of excess energy, but should not be exercised too much because doing so could harm their developing skeleton and joints. Because of all their excess energy, puppies are often hyperactive and need close supervision to prevent them from getting into mischief.

Socialization at a young age is essential for this breed because they tend to be suspicious of new people. They may develop an irrational fear of anyone outside of their immediate family if they are not given adequate opportunities to interact with people outside of their immediate circle. If this anxiety isn't addressed soon, it could lead to violence.

Breed Similar to the Dogue de Bordeaux

You can find dog breeds with physical and behavioural similarities to these dogs in the Mastiff, the Neapolitan Mastiff, and the Bull Mastiff.


Mastiffs, also known as English Mastiffs, have a lifetime of 6 to 12 years and are friendly toward other pets, making them a good alternative to Dogue de Bordeauxs despite their similar size, temperament, and level of energy.

Neapolitan Mastiff

The Mastino, or Neapolitan Mastiff, has a lifespan of 7 to 9 years, which is comparable to that of the Dogue de Bordeaux, another large, active dog. They're also better adapted to sharing a home with other animals than the Dogue de Bordeaux is.


Bullmastiffs and Dogue de Bordeauxs are physically and emotionally similar, but the Bullmastiff's increased energy level makes it a better choice for an owner who leads a busy life. Additionally, their longevity is increased to between 8 and 10 years.