German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff: Breeds Comparison

Trying to decide between the German Shepherd Dog and the Neapolitan Mastiff? Both of these dogs can be similar in some ways but are quite different in many others. Read on and find out which of these popular breeds is the perfect pup for your lifestyle!

Before getting a puppy, you should be sure that the breed you're doing to buy or rescue is a good fit for your lifestyle and home.

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While German Shepherd Dog is a member of the Herding Group, Neapolitan Mastiff belongs to the group of Working Dogs.

Despite these breeds aren't members of the same breed groups, they have some similarities and not only differences so keep reading to learn more.

German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff Size Comparison

Neapolitan Mastiffs are larger, with a typical height of 24 to 31 inches and weight of 120 to 200 pounds, while the typical height of German Shepherd Dog is 22 to 26 inches and they usually weigh 75 to 95 pounds.

We know that these numbers might be too abstract, so we made a tool to help you visualize these numbers.

The following chart compares the average breeds height with the average height of an American man and woman.

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data, the average height of a man is 69 inches, and the height of a woman is 63.5 inches.

German Shepherd Dog Height Visualization Neapolitan Mastiff Height Visualization Average American Women Height Visualization Average American Men Height Visualization

Dog size comparison to a human. From left, average heights of German Shepherd Dog, Neapolitan Mastiff, American female, and American male.

German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff lifespan

No doubt, the quality of care provided to the dog is one of the main factors when it comes to canines life longevity, however, there are also other factors, especially the dog's breed.

With a life expectancy of 10 to 14 years, German Shepherd Dogs usually live longer than Neapolitan Mastiffs.

Neapolitan Mastiffs' lifespan is 8 to 10 years.

Read on to the following sections to better understand in detail how German Shepherd Dog and Neapolitan Mastiff compare and hopefully end up with enough arguments to decide which one is better for you.

Breed Name German Shepherd Dog German Shepherd Dog Neapolitan Mastiff Neapolitan Mastiff
Traits
Breed GroupHerding DogsWorking Dogs
Height22 to 26 inches24 to 31 inches
Weight75 to 95 pounds120 to 200 pounds
Life Span10 to 14 years8 to 10 years

German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff adaptability

When we say "dog adaptability", most people think about apartment living adaptability, so let's start with that.

All dogs are great — but not all dogs are great for or geared toward apartment living. A dog may be considered the worst dog breed for apartments for a few reasons including size, energy level, noise, smell, shedding...

German Shepherd Dogs have a better reputation as good apartment living dogs than Neapolitan Mastiffs.

While most dogs can be left home alone for 6 to 8 hours, some will do better. Check the table below to see how German Shepherd Dogs and Neapolitan Mastiffs tolerate being left alone.

To learn more, read our list of dogs that can be left alone.

Hot weather tolerance

Depending on where you live, you should choose a dog that tolerates hot or cold weather well.

German Shepherd Dog tolerates hot weather better than Neapolitan Mastiff.

During warm weather, be sure to provide shade and water and head out in the morning or late evening when it's cooler. Also, avoid pavements - if the ground is too hot to touch for your hand for a few seconds, it's too hot for paws.

Check our heatstroke article on prevention and symptoms to learn more.

What about cold weather?

Cold temperatures are not a problem for most dogs until they fall below 45° F, at which point some cold-averse dogs might begin to feel uncomfortable. When temperatures fall below 32° F, owners of small breed dogs, dogs with thin coats, and/or very young, old, or sick dogs should pay close attention to their pet’s well-being.

Once temperatures drop under 20° F, all owners need to be aware that their dogs could potentially develop cold-associated health problems like hypothermia and frostbite.

German Shepherd Dog tolerates cold weather better than Neapolitan Mastiff.

Neapolitan Mastiffs' fur is simply not designed for low temperatures, so you might consider getting them some kind of dog wear coat.

The best way to monitor dogs when it’s cold is to keep a close eye on their behavior. If you notice your dog shivering, acting anxious, whining, slowing down, searching out warm locations, or holding up one or more paws, it’s time to head inside.

Our "How Cold Is Too Cold For Dogs?" article has more information on this topic.

AdaptabilityGerman Shepherd DogNeapolitan Mastiff
Adapts Well To Apartment Living
Good For Novice Owners
Sensitivity Level
Tolerates Being Alone
Tolerates Cold Weather
Tolerates Hot Weather

German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff temperament

It's always hard to make a general statement about the whole breed's temperament. Each dog has a different temperament, and there are a lot of factors that affect its behavior.

Looking for a perfect family dog?

If you're looking for a companion dog, you won't go wrong with German Shepherd Dog and Neapolitan Mastiff. Their outgoing and friendly personality makes them a great choice for families. Both are highly affectionate with family, they will immediately become a family member.

When it comes to behavior around children, German Shepherd Dog simply tends to do better.

Both German Shepherd Dog and Neapolitan Mastiff love children - they are usually gentle and patient with kids, but as we mentioned, temperaments can vary based on the individual dog.

We've created a list of the 15 best dogs for kids and family, so read it next if this is important for you.

Guarding behavior

Dog guarding behavior is welcome for some owners, while others prefer a dog that's friendly towards strangers.

Speaking of friendliness toward strangers, German Shepherd Dogs and Neapolitan Mastiffs are the complete opposite.

While German Shepherd Dogs are super friendly toward strangers, Neapolitan Mastiffs are naturally suspicious toward strangers, so you can expect they will act protective.

All-Around FriendlinessGerman Shepherd DogNeapolitan Mastiff
Affectionate With Family
Kid-Friendly
Dog Friendly
Friendly Toward Strangers

Health And Grooming Needs

The best way to optimize your pup’s health is to research reputable breeders, and then when you meet them ask to see the parents and their health certificates as described above and to see the conditions in which all the dogs are living.

Check the table below to see the general health rating for these two canines, and read full breed profile articles to read in-depth information on their health.

Also, some breeds are prone to obesity, which could cause other health conditions. Be sure to check that information as well, if the breed is prone to obesity, keep a close eye on labels and feed your dog according to the food labels.

For example, hip dysplasia is hereditary and is especially common in larger dogs. Factors such as excessive growth rate, types of exercise, and improper weight and nutrition can magnify this genetic predisposition.

What about shedding?

One of the bad parts of having a dog is definitely shedding. So be sure to take this into your consideration when choosing the right breed for you. Click here to learn how to minimize the shedding.

German Shepherd Dog is a full-fledged fur factory!

German Shepherd Dog shed less than Neapolitan Mastiff do, but don't forget - preventing shedding is impossible, but regular brushing is necessary.

Recommended article: 30 Small Hypoallergenic Dogs That Don’t Shed.

Drooling potential?

Hate drooling? Well, then you should probably skip Neapolitan Mastiff and choose German Shepherd Dog instead.

Health And Grooming NeedsGerman Shepherd DogNeapolitan Mastiff
Amount Of Shedding
Drooling Potential
Easy To Groom
General Health
Potential For Weight Gain
Size

German Shepherd Dog vs Neapolitan Mastiff trainability

Each dog needs some kind of obedience training, but some of them are easier to train, while others are more stubborn.

German Shepherd Dogs are usually easier to train than Neapolitan Mastiffs.

If you choose one of these dogs, remember three pillars of dog training - Patience, persistence, and consistency play a huge role in successfully training your dog.

Finally, if you think you aren't capable of training your dog on your own, you might also consider getting professional help.

TrainabilityGerman Shepherd DogNeapolitan Mastiff
Easy To Train
Intelligence
Potential For Mouthiness
Prey Drive
Tendency To Bark Or Howl
Wanderlust Potential

Do German Shepherd Dog and Neapolitan Mastiff need a lot of physical activity?

To keep your dog healthy, calm, and happy, you have to provide it with enough physical activities. Not only your dog will be healthier and happier when it's active, but you'll also reduce or completely eliminate destructive behavior.

Some people don't think about this when selecting a breed, so we have dedicated a whole chapter to physical needs.

German Shepherd Dogs have a high level of exercise needs, while Neapolitan Mastiffs require a medium intensity of exercise.

Physical NeedsGerman Shepherd DogNeapolitan Mastiff
Energy Level
Intensity
Exercise Needs
Potential For Playfulness

German Shepherd Dog or Neapolitan Mastiff: The bottom line

In this article, we tried to give you an idea of what you can expect from German Shepherd Dogs and Neapolitan Mastiffs.

To further explore their personality, overall health, temperament, and much more, read their full breed profile.

Or, use the tool below to read the next comparison.

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