23-28” (58-70 cm) 84-110 lb (38-50 kg) Short, stiff shiny outercoat. Light undercoat. Black, fawn, red, blue, chestnut. Brindling allowed. May have eye mask or white markings.
A direct descendant of the Roman Molossus Mastiff, the Cane Corso is a guardian dog whose name comes from the Latin “cohors”, meaning guardian/protector. Used to hunt large game, drive cattle and protect the family, the breed held popularity in Italy for centuries. But as large game dwindled and farmers turned to more modern technology to move their herds, the need for the Cane Corso disappeared, and so did the breed. In the 1970s, Italian dog fanciers searched the country, seeking good examples of the old Mastiffs, and began reconstructing the Cane Corso breed. Arriving in North America in the 1980s, the breed is slowly gaining a reputation as an excellent guard dog and family companion.
First and foremost a protector, the Cane Corso bonds closely with his family, particularly young children. He is alert and naturally suspicious of strangers, and can readily judge when he should be protective, or when he should back down. His steady temperament and eager-to-please attitude make him a pleasure to train. Early socialization and training allow him to learn to assess people and situations.