Breed Information




The Cane Corso is a medium to large sized dog, short haired and well-built. He is elegant and without anatomical exaggerations.

His appearance provides the impression of persistence, strength and flexibility. He has strong bones, a compact, strong and very muscular body. His head is massive, his look is full of fire, very expressive, almost noble. The neck is strong and muscular, his skin is closely connected to the connective tissue beneath. The entire physique is very muscular and well proportioned.

Ears and tail were cut and docked traditionally in his country of origin legally until 2007.

The Cane Corso appears in many different colours like black, red, blue, fawn (black mask), formentino (blue mask), and a brindle in each variation. Small white patches on the chest, feet and bridge of nose are accepted.

As the picture (right) demonstrates, the muzzle is of square shape, there is a clear stop, and the shape of the head itself is almost square. Undershot is preferred, scissors is allowed.

The optimum height of a male Cane Corso is from 64cm to 68cm with a weight of 45kg to 50kg. For a female Cane Corso a height of 60cm to 64cm with a weight of 40 to 45 kg is desired.



Correct profiles are shown below:


1: hock close, feet spaced

2: correct

3: feet close, hock spaced












1: internal

2: correct

3: external








Breed History

The Italian Corso Dog  is also known as the Italian Mastif, or his original name Cane Corso Italiano. Cane (pronounced *Cah-nay*) is the Latin word for dog, Corso comes from the roman word "cohors", which means "course, chase" or "guard, protect".

Until today the origin of the Italian Cane Corso is controversial. It is presumed that a form of this breed has existed since the fourth century -  War Dogs descending from the old Roman Mollossor. Many illustrations and historical sources show that this breed was scattered throughout Italy in the past.


There is convincing evidence that the Cane Corso was in military use in early times in Monopoli di Sabina, near Rome. This breed was used as gladiator in the arena and for hunting the big game. The cropped ears and tail were useful, as prey wasn't able to turn around to defend themselves.



Farmers found him to be useful as a drover, especially when moving animals to market or to the slaughter-house, protecting carts, travellers and livestock.

This breed proved itself as a guard dog for the home, land and livestock and still performs these duties today.





Due to many different circumstances the Cane Corso breed was threatened and close to dying out, until some enthusiasts came to his rescue. Fortunately today the breed is designated as being managed.



Nonetheless, this is a very talented breed and now its popularity is increasing at an incredible rate. The Italian Corso is an unsurpassed guardian and watchdog but also devoted to its owner, gentle to children and their families. This breed is rather restrained and incurious in regards to strangers.

The official acknowledgement of the Cane Corso as a pure breed occurred in the FCI association in November 1996 in the FCI-group 2. In Australia the Cane Corso has been registered as the 52nd pure breed in group 6 since December 2003.


The Cane Corso is an intelligent breed that takes readily to obedience training, protection and security work. Cane Corsos have been used as police dogs and some can be used for herding livestock and tracking. We took part in a K9 Pro Sport competition in 2009 and won 3rd place with our India. We are still able to have her around children and other animals without problems.


As pictures on our website show - they are excellent with children and other animals after extensive socialization and training.

If you have any questions or inspirations about the Cane Corso or our site, we would love to hear from you. Please send us an email.


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