The Cane Corso (pronounced: Kanay Corso) or the Italian Mastiff is a large Italian dog breed. Back in the day, they were bred as guardians, companions, and hunters. Today, most Cane Corsos are bred to herd cattle, guard livestock, protect people, and hunt large game like deer and wild boar. It's pretty much who you'd call a super dog! 


Cane Corsos are very close to their hunting roots which means large estates or houses with big yards are preferred to apartment living or small houses. 


About the Breed

Nutrition

A high-protein, low-fat diet is best for a Cane Corso. They need protein to support their muscles, but they also tend to gain weight quickly. That said, Corso parents must avoid food that contains carbohydrates, fillers, and flavourings - these give temporary hunger satisfaction and add unnecessary weight on the dog's joints. It is best to choose food made of wholesome and fresh ingredients and stick to a diet regime prescribed by your veterinarian. 

Grooming

Cane Corsos are shedders, but they are very easy to groom. All you need is a daily brushing and a weekly deshedding. Further, you can also clean their ears and brush their teeth once a week. 


Exercise

The more you exercise this dog, the better it is for you and the dog. Cane Corsos need a balanced exercise regime - sufficient to keep them at a healthy weight and not overexercising the dog in ways that can soften and weaken its joints and bones. Exercise can be different every day - jogging, playing fetch, hiking, swimming, agility, draft work, scent work, fly ball, dock diving etc. It's best never to let a Cane Corso's energy and athleticism turn into a double-edged sword.

Training

Training and socialisation must start early if you want a well-behaved dog. Cane Corsos respond well to patient positive reinforcement training. You want this dog to know your lifestyle from day one - who to be nice to, when to guard, when to be calm etc. Cane Corsos function best when they know the rules of the house and have someone enforcing them every day. 

Health

Cane Corsos are a robust breed, but as they age, they suffer from obesity, arthritis, thyroid problems, and hip dysplasia. However, most of these age-related problems can be done away with if the dog is put on the right age-related diet and supplements from the start. 

Temperament

A Cane Corso's temperament and personality depends primarily on how her parent raises her - she can be instinctive and protective, yet so gentle to not hurt a fly. Overall, Cane Corsos are even-tempered, reserved dogs. 

They're everything you'd look for in a dog -

Cane Corsos are outstanding watchdogs and guard dogs
They require minimal grooming
They are very responsive to positive reinforcement training
Cane Corsos are a robust, healthy breed
They are excellent exercise partners.

However, this is a breed that needs careful thinking before welcoming home -

Cane Corsos need lots of balanced exercises and a special diet to maintain a healthy weight.
They are not friendly around strangers or other pets in the house
Cane Corsos thrive on constant companionship and do not like being left aloneT
hey need early socialisation and positive reinforcement training as early as possible
They drool excessively and are at risk of overheating in hot climates


A dog's personality always depends on how its parents raise it, and the same goes for the Cane Corso. If you choose to adopt one, make sure you know everything about the breed and are willing to put in the time, effort, and patience to raise it to be a lifelong friend!