Cane Corso Facts — 19 Frequently Asked Questions

Updated July 20, 2021

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Cane Corso Questions

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Here are 19 of the questions most frequently asked by people who are thinking about getting a Cane Corso — or people who are just interested to find out more about this great dog breed.

There are a few misconceptions out there about Cane Corsos. We'll clear those up and answer other interesting questions about Cane Corso temperament, breed characteristics, training etc.

Cane Corso History

The Cane Corso is an Italian mastiff, and their history is fairly well-documented. A lot of emphasis is often put on their role as a Roman war dog.

There are also claims that Cane Corsos were brought back to Rome and put to work in the arenas, fighting to the death with lions. Entertainment for the masses.

This is probably the origin of the 'Can a Cane Corso kill a lion?' questions we see everywhere. I would never have thought of this question, but it's made me think! I can't see how an individual Cane Corso could deal with a beast 4 times its size, with those claws. But a pack of Cane Corsos would be pretty formidable — who knows?

Cane Corso — Working Dog

After this, they were used as working dogs on farms, with duties that included guarding and protection. One of their adversaries n this situation would have been wild boar — which are ferocious animals.

The qualities appropriate for a working breed were selectively bred into the Cane Corso by the breeders of the day.

And this later version of the Cane Corso is likely to be more of an influence on today's dog. The 'ancient war dog' version gets the press, because it's a good story.

Cane Corso — Family Dog

But the breeder of the day is always working to make the dog the best fit for current needs. Today, the Cane Corso is most wanted as a family dog. So they are bred to emphasize the traits that match that.

So, today's Cane Corso is likely to be a somewhat softer dog than his old working dog counterpart.

This most recent part of their history is likely to be most significant of all.

Do Cane Corsos Make Good Pets?

Cane Corso can be outstanding family pets and ideal household canines. Loyal, affectionate and protective, with a calm, steady character, they will naturally follow their owner's lead.

They are devoted to their whole household and make wonderful buddies. However, since they are big dogs, additional caution must be taken with kids.

Do Cane Corsos Shed A Lot?

Cane Corsos can shed a surprising amount, for a dog with a short coat. The coat is double layered — sometimes known as 'double coated' and this is one of the reasons why they can still shed a lot.

They're not entirely a high-maintenance pet, but they do require regular brushing. Together with a regular bath, they don't need much else in respect of grooming.

Is The Cane Corso A Bully Breed?

A bewildering variety of dog breeds belong in the bully breed group. And when you see that a good number of these dog breeds appear to share absolutely no common ground, it's all the more perplexing.

However, under the surface they do have something in common...

The bully breeds can all be traced way back to the Mollosser dogs of Ancient Greece. The Cane Corso breed is popular for a family tree which goes back to the Mollossers.

So, yes indeed, the Cane Corso is for sure a bully breed.

Are Cane Corsos Friendly?

Cane Corso puppies are normally friendly. As they grow into adult dogs, the guarding side of their nature tends to come to the fore, and they typically come to be less trusting of strangers.

They stay affectionate and friendly towards their family group — indeed their family, and their requirement to defend and protect it, becomes their primary focus.

They also naturally follow the behavior of their owners. If you are friendly towards a visitor, your Cane Corso will quickly detect that and will typically accept the visitor, too.

Are Cane Corsos Good with Kids?

The Cane Corso is gentle by nature, but he is a large breed. In fact, he is classified as a giant breed. So the Cane Corso puppy grows into a huge adult dog, and he will need to learn to be especially gentle in his interactions with kids.

Not because he is likely to be aggressive, but just because of his sheer size.
The Cane Corso is affectionate and dedicated to his family, and he will quickly learn to include kids in the group. Due to the fact that the child is more likely to be unreliable than the pet, it is suggested that a child should always be supervised when with your Cane Corso.

Are Cane Corsos Difficult To Train?

Some people say that Cane Corsos are challenging to train. That has not been our experience.

They are smart pets, and keen to please their owners. They also have an excellent capability to retain what they have learned. This combination makes them really quite straightforward to train.

Can Cane Corsos Live With Other Dogs?

The answer is, yes.

Our Cane Corsos have actually lived with dogs who were older, dogs who were younger, bigger dogs, and dogs who were smaller. They have actually lived with males, females, their own breed and other dog breeds.

They have even got along fine with cats. They are an excellent household dog.

Will My Cane Corso Protect Me?

Your Cane Corso dog will safeguard you to some extent. The Cane Corso is a mastiff breed, originally bred as a watchdog. As a breed, those instincts are still present. And Cane Corsos can be exceptional defense dogs.

However, you should also consider the character of the specific dog, together with his circumstances and training.

With specialist training, the Cane Corso is known to be a great guard dog, or bodyguard dog. But a typical household pet Cane Corso can't be expected to function like that without the required training.

Is A Cane Corso A Good Family Dog?

The Cane Corso is dedicated to his household. He is faithful and protective, and he makes a great companion and guardian for all your family.

He is loving and gentle with kids but, due to the fact that this is a large dog, care is recommended with small children and infants.

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How Dangerous Are Cane Corsos?

A Cane Corso is not a naturally dangerous dog. Any dog should be handled properly and the larger the dog breed, the more serious the consequences of any bad behavior.

However, if you follow some easy guidelines, with basic training and socialization, there is no reason your Cane Corso must be an unsafe dog.

Can Cane Corsos Live In Harmony With Cats?

Cane Corsos can live in harmony with cats. Cane Corsos have a strong prey drive, however they are also dedicated to their family and do very well at following the lead of their owners.

They are able to acknowledge cats as one of their family, simply because their owners do.

Are Cane Corsos Good Guard Dogs?

The Cane Corso is one of the very best watchdogs available. He is vigilant, protective and devoted. He will be cautious about someone he does not know.

But he also recognizes when his owner acts with a friendly demeanor, and he will be guided by his owner's lead.

Are Cane Corsos Aggressive

Not by nature. Any canine can end up being aggressive in specific circumstances, such as if he is being threatened. And the Cane Corso is a big dog — obviously, the larger the dog, the more potentially unsafe any aggression becomes.

It's important that a Cane Corso owner provides training an socialization to ensure the dog is well-behaved and under control. But that's the case with all dogs.

But the Cane Corso is not inherently more aggressive or more unsafe than other breeds.

Are Cane Corsos Stubborn?

You might see some independence or stubbornness, particularly when they are adolescent. But, the greatest concern for the Cane Corso is to be close to his family. He will therefore give way to his owner.

The trick is to be steadfast. A calm and confident manner will get a better result than shouting and anger. Let him see what is good by praising him, let him know what is bad with a short sharp disciplinary command. Be calm and consistent. He will soon catch on.

Here are some training questions with answers that apply to all dogs...

Can You Send Your Dog Away To Be Trained?

You can send your pet away to be trained. There may be some advantages, but some of the major elements of canine habits are not dealt with by doing it in this manner. It might not be the most effective way to get the dog trained.

The most significant part of your pet's behavior action is based upon his relationship with you. His relationship with an external dog trainer is another thing altogether and is not in play at all when it's just you and your dog.

In any given situation, the canine is responding instinctively to his relationship with another person.

You, as the pet dog owner, must understand how that works, what is occurring between you, and how you can manage it. You do not get any of that from sending your dog away to be trained by somebody else.

Is It Bad To Train Your Dog With Treats?

It's OK to train your canine with treats -- as long as:

  • You only give your dog treats which are good for him
  • You don't offer him too much, so that he is overfed
  • You have a clear objective to work with the treats for a short time at first, then you change to other types of incentive — such as affection, touch and attention.

For many pets, training treats are without a doubt the most effective method to get the training kicked off.

Just How Much Should You Train Your Dog A Day?

A great routine to aim for is 15 minutes daily.

This is probably not too difficult to handle for the owner, and not too much for the dog, and yet it's sufficient to get good results. You can split it into 2 or 3 shorter sessions.

It's good to keep up a day-to-day regimen, however don't worry if you miss a number of days, or if every day is simply too much for you. You can reduce it to 3 or 4 times a week and it will still work well.

How Do Dogs Say Sorry?

According to a study done by biologists at the City University of New York, canines do undoubtedly say sorry.

When they have screwed up, obviously, they understand full well, and they have a well-developed mechanism to display their regret. We've all seen it, in fact — it's when they hang their heads and put their tail in between their legs.

In fact, it is so obvious that there are many humorous videos on YouTube of canines embarrassed by being busted. In the majority of those videos, there are obvious facial expressions, as well -- sideways looks and slitted eyes and so on.

How Do I Become The Alpha Dog?

The most important thing is to be calm, confident and assertive. Anger and shouting merely sends the dog a signal that you are out of control. He will see this as a weakness and will not follow you.

It's also crucial to be constant. You can't let things slip one day and count on the canine to behave well the next day. Withdraw your attention if your canine is not behaving as you wish.

When you are the one providing his food, mealtimes become one of your greatest tools in developing and maintaining dominance. Mealtimes give you a unmistakable and really natural signal to the dog.

So don't squander this golden chance-- it comes naturally a couple of times every day, which is enough to develop and maintain you as the alpha.

Always, without fail, make your canine do something to earn his food — sit, stay, lie down, go to his dog crate, whatever you choose, but be sure to do something every feeding time.

Conclusion

So those are the answers to the most frequently asked questions about Cane Corso temperament, breed characteristics, training etc.

We have more information about many of these topics in the articles linked in the sidebar over on the right. Check them out.

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