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Cane Corso


  • Origin: Italy
  • Alternate names: Cane Corz, Italian Mastiff, Italian Corso, Cane Corso Italiano, Cane Di Macellaio
  • Size: Large
  • Life Span: 09-12 years
  • Popularity: Ranked #37 in 2017
  • Availability in India:
  • Avg Puppy Price in India: ₹60,000 and above
  • Dog Breed Group: Working Group
  • Guide Dog: No

Is Cane Corso Good for Indians?

Cane Corso, the famous Italian guard dog is not so well-known in the Indian households. Their availability and demand are not so high in the country and owning a Cane Corso is considered a rarity here. But, if we analyze that whether this canine from Italy is a good fit for someone living in India, then the answer is two-fold. On one hand, this breed has an awesome tolerance to high temperatures and thus can efficiently live in a hot country like India, but on the other hand, they require a large space for themselves and are uncomfortable in small houses and apartments, are highly expensive to purchase and raise and are not that easy-going, hence it would require more effort as well as substantial financial resources to efficiently maintain this breed. So, a potential dog owner looking for this Italian pooch should be aware of all their needs and requirements and then he/she can make a well-informed decision.

Cane Corso Dog Official Breed Standards

Cane Corso, or the Italian Mastiffs, are strong boned and robustly-built canines who are mostly medium-large in size. They are quite muscular but equally athletic and possess a hint of elegance and gracefulness when they move. Official standards for the Italian Mastiff are as follows:

  • Cane Corso Height and Weight

The Italian Mastiffs are very well-balanced dogs when it comes to their body dimensions. Their height and mass both are in good proportion to each other. The average weight of a Cane Corso is around 40-50 kg and its height hovers somewhere around 23-27 inches (at the shoulder).




45-50 kg

24-27 inch


40-45 kg

23-26 inch

  • Coat

Their coat is quite dense, stiff, shiny in appearance and fairly short in length. They also possess a light undercoat, which in cold weather conditions, becomes a bit thicker. Also, their coat can be found in several different colors with a fair amount of streaks (brindling) of some other color present on it.

  • Body

The Italian Mastiffs are quite brawny and well-made canines with a slightly arched neck that flows smoothly into the shoulders. They have a well-muscled broad chest with a very strong forefront. The back region is also quite sturdy and wide with a thick rooted tail which is not very tapered. Both the forelegs and hind legs are very strong, powerful and provide a perfect balance to this formidable mastiff.

  • Head

They have a large Molossus-like head which is slightly curved and is decently wide. Their eyes are almond-shaped and medium in size and are mostly found in dark brown colors. Lighter shades are also acceptable in some Italian Mastiffs. The ears are triangular in shape and are set well above the cheekbones.

  • Jaws

They have quite a strong jaw region with good dentition. The muzzle is very broad and deep and is not overly narrow or snipey.

  • Temperament

They are known as Italian Guard dogs, so that should tell you about their guarding and protective instincts. They are very watchful and careful about their family and their property and are considered one of the very best guard dogs out there. They also are very intelligent and remains aware and attentive all the times. They are quite affectionate and loyal with their family members but they don’t go out of their way to show them how much they care for them, they expect their guarding capabilities to please and impress their loved ones. But, as they are so protective in nature, they do not trust someone that is unknown to them very easily and thus are not so warm to the likes of strangers or even other canines that are not known to them. General character traits of a Cane Corso are listed below:

  • Stable
  • Trainable
  • Reserved
  • Even-tempered
  • Calm
  • Quiet
  • Loyal
  • Courageous
  • Intelligent

Cane Corso Dog Overview

Cane Corso originates from Italy and is known to us by many different names like the Italian guard dog, the Italian Mastiff et cetera. These canines received their name because of their exceptional guarding capabilities and instincts as Corso translates to “Guardian” in Latin and the word Cane means “Dog”.

These canines have an intimidating look and are quite burly in appearance, but they are equally loving and gentle with their family members and are always there to protect them. They are very loyal and respectful to their owners, but it is also true that they require an experienced and knowledgeable dog owner.

This breed requires a very good amount of exercise and training to keep them in shape and t0 make them obedient and well acquiescent, respectively. They also require early socialization so that they can easily differentiate between a stranger and someone less known to them.

These dogs might demand a good amount of time and resource investment from their owners, but if someone wants a companion who is gentle and kind to them but equally protective and courageous by nature, then they would love to raise this Italian doggy.

Popular Cane Corso types and colors

Cane Corso is divided into different types only on the basis of its coat color. It is available in several different colors which are as follows:

  • Black
  • Fawn
  • Grey
  • Black Brindle
  • Grey Brindle
  • Chestnut Brindle
  • Red

Cane Corso Dog Breed Characteristics



Sensitivity Level


Affection Level


Potential for mouthiness




Drooling Potential


Barking Tendencies


Energy Level


Friendly towards dogs


Health Issues


Friendly towards other animals




Child Friendly




Exercise Needs


Shedding Level


Grooming Needs


Social Needs


Good for novice owners


Stranger Friendly




Watchdog Ability


Tolerates Heat


Tolerates Cold


Cane Corso Maintenance and Care

  • Feeding

The Italian Mastiffs are medium to large sized dogs and hence they require a substantial amount of high-quality food to keep their health in check. The food can be given to them on a trial basis by taking the advice of a skilled veterinarian and if the food suits their health and taste buds, then it can be given to them permanently.

  • Exercise

They have a well-toned and muscular body and to keep their body in that shape, they need a high amount of exercise on a daily basis. Long walks or runs in an open field regularly should keep them fit. Also, making them exercise not only improves their physical health but is also very beneficial for their mental state as well.

  • Training

They are very intelligent and smart and thus can learn new tricks and commands rather quickly. But, they are also easily distracted during a training exercise, hence a trainer should be making the training process a bit more interesting and fun. They also need early socialization and obedience training so that they can be controlled and handled more easily.

  • Grooming and Shedding

Because of their dense and short coat, they don’t need a lot of grooming to look top-notch. Brushing of coat once a week with a soft bristled brush to remove extra hair is enough for them. Bathing and trimming of nails are to be done very rarely as they remain quite neat and clean for long periods of time. They also are very light shedders and only sheds on an occasional basis and that too in not so sizeable amounts.

  • Health Issues

There are not a lot of health issues that are very common in the Italian Mastiffs. But, the ones that are common in them appear in very high frequency and can be highly harmful to their overall health. These health-related issues are as follows:

  • Bloat or Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus (GDV)
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Entropion
  • Ear Infections
  • Visits to the Vet

For regular body and health check-ups, they should be taken to a veterinarian’s clinic on a frequent basis.

Cane Corso History and Background

The Cane Corso is believed to be a descendant of a war and hunting dog which was most likely a mix of Roman Canis Pugnax and the Neapolitan Mastiff. It is highly speculated that the Canis Pugnax were used by the Romans in the wars against their numerous enemies.

Initially, this Italian Mastiff was used for hunting purposes by the hunters to fulfill their food requirements. They also used to guard and protect them from any kind harm like wild animals or some other threat. After a while, these canines were also used in the sport of bull-baiting in some places.

But after industrialization, their numbers took a massive hit and by the year 1980 or so, they were on the verge of extinction. But because of the collective efforts of various individuals from different countries, this breed saw a revival and their numbers again started to increase. And, today they are in the top 40 of the world’s most popular dog breeds.