The small gene pool of the Dogue de Bordeaux makes them particularly susceptible to genetically linked health issues.

* Hip and elbow dysplasia is a common problem of the breed. We believe that dogues should be OFA screened before being considered for a breeding program.

* Heart problems and skin diseases are also common, in particular sub-aortic stenosis (SAS) and demodectic mange can be devastating for the Bordeaux. Both are inherited conditions and heart echoes and auscultation are essential to clear potential breeding dogues for heart issues.

* Bloat is the common term for Gastric Dilation-Torsion Complex and involves the swelling and twisting of the stomach from gas and/or fluid. Symptoms can be subtle and may be preceded by excessive exercise and excitement after eating and drinking. Bloat is LIFE-THREATENING.

* Eosinphilic panosteitis is an acute lameness unrelated to trauma that can shift from one location to another. Pano can affect large breed puppies to 18 months of age - eventual recovery is not supposed to include any permanent injury.



Believed to have originated in France more than 600 years ago, the Dogue de Bordeaux is highly regarded for his balanced temperament and imposing presence. Also known as the French Mastiff, or most commonly as the DDB, this fearless, powerful dog excels as both guardian and companion to his family. The DDB was trained to bait bulls, bears, and jaguars; hunt boars; herd cattle; and protect the homes, butcher shops and vineyards of their masters. The Dogue was prized as protector and often found in the home of the noble and wealthy of France.


Despite a calm and tranquil disposition, Dogues de Bordeaux are very attuned to their environment and respond to a threat instinctively due to their territorial nature. They are the very symbol of loyalty and courage. Although sweet and even tempered, early socialization is critical as DDBs can become aggressive with animals and reserved with strangers if not properly trained.


The Bordeaux

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The Bordeaux

Health, Origins and the Standard

Info sources: The Canadian DDB Club no longer has a website

The American club - DDBSA: Dogue de Bordeaux Society of America

the OFA: Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (see recommended tests for DDBs under “browse by breed” )

and the French club: Societe des Amateurs de Dogues de Bordeaux

DDBRescue US: Dogue de Bordeaux Rescue

Getting started with DDBs:


FCI Breed Standard

See full text @ Dogue de Bordeaux - CKC


General Appearance Typical concave lined brachycephalic molossoid. The Dogue de Bordeaux is a very powerful dog, with a very muscular body yet retaining a harmonious general outline. He is built rather close to the ground, the distance sternum-ground being slightly less than the depth of the chest. Stocky, athletic, imposing, he has a very dissuasive aspect.


Important Proportions The length of the body, measured from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttock, is superior to the height at the withers, in the proportion of 11/10. The depth of the chest is more than half the height at the withers. The maximum length of the muzzle is equal to one third of the length of the head. The minimum length of the muzzle is equal to one quarter of the length of the head. In the male, the perimeter of the skull corresponds more or less to the height at the withers.


Behaviour / Temperament An ancient fighting dog, the dogue de Bordeaux is gifted for guarding, which he assumes with vigilance and great courage but without aggressiveness. A good companion, very attached to his master and very affectionate. Calm, balanced with a high stimulus threshold. The male normally has a dominant character.


Height: Height should more or less correspond to the perimeter of the skull.
Dogs : 60-68 cm at the withers - Bitches : 58-66 cm at the withers. 1 cm under and 2 cm over will be tolerated.


Weight: Dogs : at least 50 kg - Bitches : at least 45 kg.


Faults: Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.


Serious Faults:

Disproportioned head (too small or exaggerately voluminous).

Bulldoggy hypertype  : Flat skull, muzzle measuring less than a quarter of the total length of the head. Swollen fold (roll) behind the nose. Important fold around the head.

Important lateral deviation of the lower jaw.

Incisors constantly visible when the mouth is closed. Very small incisors, unevenly set.

Arched back (convex).

Fused but not deviated vertebrae of the tail.

Forefeet turning inwards (even slightly).

Forefeet turning outwards too much.

Flat thighs.

Angle of hock too open (straight angulation).

Angle of the hock too closed, dog standing under himself behind.

Cow hocks or barrel hocks.

Stilted movement or serious rolling of rear.

Excessive shortness of breath, rasping.

White on tip of tail or on the front part of the forelegs, above the carpus (wrist) and the tarsus (hock) or white, without interruption, on the front of the body from the forechest to the throat.


Disqualifying Faults:

Aggressive or overly shy.

Long, narrow head with insufficiently pronounced stop, with a muzzle measuring more than a third of the total length of the head (lack of type in head).

Muzzle parallel to the top line of the skull or downfaced, Roman nose.

Twisted jaw.

Mouth not undershot.

Canines constantly visible when the mouth is closed.

Tongue constantly hanging out when the mouth is closed.

Blue eyes; bulging eyes.

Tail knotted and laterally deviated or twisted (screw tail, kink tail).

Atrophied tail

Fiddle front and down on pasterns.

Angle of the hock open towards the rear (inverted hock).

White on the head or body, any other colour of the coat than fawn (shaded or not) and in particular brindle or solid brown called “chocolate” (each hair being entirely brown).

Identifiable disabling defect


Any dog clearly showing physical or behavioural abnormalities shall be disqualified.

N.B. : Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum