The Fila Brasileiro Forum

Fila Energy

I just acquired a Fila recently. He just turned a year old. I didn't even know what they were. I was just told "Brazilian Mastiff" and thought to myself, "Feh. A Mastiff is a Mastiff. And this one is a gem." So I took him home and Googled the name. I was shocked to find that she wasn't just making a simple Mastiff sound like more of a special snowflake than he really is. Just about all the stuff I read about the conformation was correct, except for his color. The typical distrust towards strangers is there, and he's very affectionate to the members of the household. (However, the cats don't see his curiosity that way, and he's still getting used to the fact that we're the same people when we change clothes.)

The one thing that kind of doesn't fit, though, is his "lack of energy". He's not a slug or anything, but he isn't nearly as energetic as the breed statistics say they are. I was sort of expecting to have to run around outside with him for an hour twice a day, and trot with him down the street. (Neither of which I was looking forward to doing in Arizona heat, but I would have done it for him.) He's a parvo survivor, so I'm wondering whether that has something to do with it, even though he's a year old now and had been on steroids to build him back up and bolster his health after the illness.

The other thing is that it all said that they are very staunchly "indoor/outdoor" dogs. But when we go out back with him, he plops faithfully at my feet and stays there, refusing to run around, preferring to try to climb in my lap. If I try to stand in the doorway and encourage him to relieve himself outside, he stands there and looks at me like I'm dumb. Heaven forbid I try to get him to go outside during the day when the concrete is hot and I'm standing there in my bare feet, while he daintily tiptoes as close to the shade as possible. He's not usually out there for long. And leaving him outside to his own devices so he can romp and play? Forget it. There are ample hiding spots for him to chill in, toys outside, and I figured he would love to zip around unsupervised. Nope. The second the door is closed, he whines piteously and scratches at the door.

Is he really a Fila? Is he just kinda prissy? Pampered? I've had him less than a week, so he certainly didn't learn this from me.

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