Cane Corso Italiano is an active and intelligent Italian breed good at performing functions like herding, tracking, guarding, hunting, weight pulling, agility and so on. The breed is a descendent of Canis Pugnax or the old Roman Molossian. The name has been derived from a Latin word “Cohors” that means guarding.
Cane Corso Mastiff, Italian Mastiff, Italian Corso Dog and Cane da Macellaio are some other popular names for Cane Corso Italiano dog breed. In earlier times, these powerful dogs were also used as auxiliary warriors in battles. They have been immensely popular in Italy as companion, guardian and hunting dogs. Italian fanciers hail them as the only coursing Mastiffs.
They are medium to large sized dogs with a muscular, sturdy and athletic build. In fact, they appear to be more athletic than most of the other mastiff-type dogs. Muzzle is deep and as wide as it is long.
The presence of prominent superciliary arches and bulging frontal sinuses make the stop quite pronounced. The strong and muscular neck is slightly arched. Ears are V-shaped and tend to flop forwards. Eye color depends on the color of the hair coat.
Color: Black, light fawn, deer fawn, gray, blue/gray, chocolate, red, and brindle are some of the most common colors in these dogs. There may also be small white patch on the chest, feet tips and nose bridge.
Height: On an average, these dogs are 24 to 27 inches in height. Female Cane Corso Italianos tend to be 23 to 25 inches in height.
Weight: Ideal weight for these dogs ranges between 99 to 110 pounds. Bitches are usually 88 to 99 pounds in weight.
Like other medium to large sized dogs, these dogs are prone to Hip Dysplasia, Elbow Dysplasia and other bone and joint problems. They are also susceptible to gastric torsion or bloating and hence should not be fed excessively.
Life Expectancy: The average life span of Cane Corso Italiano breed dogs is about 10 to 12 years.
Litter Size: The average litter size for this breed is 6 puppies.
The short, dense, coarse and thick hair coat of these dogs requires minimal grooming. It needs to be brushed occasionally with the help of a firm bristle brush or rubber brush to maintain in perfect shiny condition. Regularly trimming the toenails, checking the eyes and ears etc are some other Cane Corso Italiano grooming activities.
As these dogs are prone to drooling a bit, skin around the mouth also needs to be cleaned from time to time. However, these dogs need not be bathed too frequently so as to retain the waterproof texture of the light shedding hair coat.
Cane Corso Italiano temperament is calm, stable, loyal, loving, courageous, protective and highly intelligent. These versatile and even tempered dogs are highly trainable. It is essential to train and socialize them right from the beginning so as to avoid aggressive behaviors, especially towards strangers.
Owners should keep in mind that Cane Corso Italiano dogs need to become fully obedience trained. Therefore, these dogs are best matched with experienced dog owners.
They are generally good with children and get along well with other pets in the house. However, to some extent supervision may be required around smaller animals. Apart from being affectionate family pets, these alert and confident dogs are considered as excellent watchdogs as well.
These active working dogs require plenty of exercise on a regular basis. Therefore, they need to be taken for long daily brisk walks at least once every day. They also make good jogging companions. These dogs are considered suitable for apartment living as long as they are exercised sufficiently in properly fenced yard. They can also stay outdoors but there should be adequate arrangement for shelter.
Another important point to remember is that although these strong and enduring dogs were used for bull baiting in the Middle Ages, they are not fighting dogs. Besides, it is worth noting that Cane Corso Italiano dogs have a high tolerance for pain.