No dog is perfect; different dogs have different health conditions and problems. Likewise, your Mastiff is also susceptible to certain health problems. It is important that you know the signs that indicate that your Mastiff is suffering from illnesses, whether they be mild or serious conditions.
The Mastiff tends to bloat when it eats or drinks too fast. This can be a very serious condition. With bloating, the Mastiff's stomach tends to twist or flip upside down while eliminating blood supply to its stomach. This can lead to shock and possible death. You can tell that your dog is suffering from bloating by its whining, vomiting sensations, excessive salivating and a tight stomach. It is possible to prevent bloating in Mastiffs by feeding it smaller portions, twice a day. Try to prevent your Mastiff from gulping food and avoid feeding numerous dogs at a time. In addition to these, make sure that you restrict your Mastiff from any exercise for at least an hour after its meals.
In addition to a tendency for bloating, Mastiffs have hereditary eye problems that include glaucoma, cataracts and PRA. The most common eye problem is PRA, which can lead to blindness. You can have a DNA test done on your Mastiff to determine if it suffers from this disease. The first signs of PRA are loss of night vision which will lead to loss of day vision, possibility of cataracts and also blindness. If you find that a Mastiff tests positive for PRA, it is better that you don't adopt it.
Mastiffs have a tendency of developing bursas on its joints because of its size, and because it uses its knees and elbows to raise itself from the ground. A bursa is basically a swelling found around the elbow and knee joints. These bursas start as fluid filled pockets, and they can develop into rough pads. Some people are of the notion that bursas should be removed surgically, while others think they should be left alone. With the many risks associated with surgery for the removal of bursas, it is better to leave them alone if they don't cause any pain to your pet. Remember that since the Mastiff is a large dog, lots of anesthesia will be required for a surgery. This huge amount of anesthesia may kill your Mastiff. So make sure that you evaluate all risks and advantages of a bursa surgery before you make a decision.
Mastiffs also suffer from hip dysplasia, which can be diagnosed by x-ray. It may arise from genetic, metabolic and dietary problems, and its symptoms include pain, difficulty in walking and climbing of stairs and difficulty in getting up. This is why it is not advisable to keep Mastiffs that suffer from hip dysplasia.