Cane Corso temperament, personality, training, behavior, pros and cons, advice, and information, by Michele Welton, Dog Trainer, Behavioral Consultant, Author of 15 Dog Books
As with all mastiffs, socialization is an absolute requirement to promote the correct temperament, which should be protective in a calm and discriminating way. Is massive and powerful Has a short easy-care coat Is calm and quiet indoors as an adult Makes an imposing watchdog Is serious and self-assured with strangers, yet generally mild-mannered unless aroused Compared to other mastiffs, is more energetic, more athletic, and more responsive to training
A huge dog who takes up a lot of space in your house and car A heavy dog who wants to sit on your feet and lean his weight against your leg Rowdiness and exuberant jumping when young Destructiveness when bored or left alone too much Potential aggression toward people when not acquired from a responsible source or when not raised and trained properly Potential aggression toward other animals Strong-willed mind of his own, requiring a confident owner who can take charge Snorting, snuffling, wheezing, grunting, loud snoring Slobbering and drooling (individuals with heavy jowls) Gassiness (flatulence) Legal liabilities (public perception, future breed bans, insurance problems, increased chance of lawsuits) You can avoid some negative traits by choosing an ADULT dog from an animal shelter or rescue group . Finally, you can avoid some negative traits by training your Cane Corso to respect you and by following the 11-step care program in my book, 11 Things You Must Do Right To Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy .
Young Cane Corsos need enough exercise to keep them lean and healthy, but not so much that their soft growing bones, joints, and ligaments become over-stressed and damaged. Adult Cane Corsos need more exercise to keep them in shape, but not in hot or humid weather for fear of overheating. Otherwise your young mastiff will become bored and destructive and his powerful jaws can literally destroy your living room.
They need extensive exposure to friendly people so they learn to recognize the normal behaviors of “good guys.” Some Cane Corsos go in the opposite direction — without enough socialization, they become fearful of strangers, which could possibly lead to defensive biting. Some Cane Corsos have strong instincts to chase and seize cats and other fleeing creatures.
Though much more trainable than other mastiff breeds, Cane Corsos have an independent mind of their own and are not pushovers to raise and train. Cane Corsos who are fed a homemade diet of real meat and vegetables have much less trouble with gassiness.
Are Cane Corso good family dogs?
Are Cane Corsos Good Family Pets? The Cane Corso can be a loving and devoted companion that wants nothing more than to please its owner. They are also known to be great guard dogs with a sharp sense of alertness. However, since they are a large sized dog, they do not make the best dog for families with small children.
Has a Cane Corso ever killed anyone?
Craig Sytsma, 46, a metallurgical engineer and divorced father of three from Livonia, was jogging along Thomas Road the evening of July 23 when the two dogs, 100-pound Cane Corsos, dragged him into a ditch and mauled him to death, even as frantic neighbors tried to chase them away.
Why you shouldn't get a Cane Corso?
DON’T GET A CANE CORSO if you are attracted to the breed chiefly by its appearance. A dog’s breed doesn’t make you look more MANLY! … dog that requires heavy socialization and training by an experienced owner, as they are not a “happy-go-lucky” mastiff – they will not “love” everyone they meet.
At what age do Cane Corsos become aggressive?
Around the age of 15-18 months, your Cane Corso will reach emotional maturity. He may display more dominant behavior while testing his position in the pack.
Cane Corsi is an ancient dog breed, bred to protect their owners with a fearless resolve only matched by their loyalty and deep bonds with their humans. Although the Corsi have a genetic predisposition towards protective behavior, could they be considered as a breed to beware of??
With the decline of western culture in the 15 century, the breed
was set to guard duty or boar hunting and livestock driving. Our Ultimate Mastiff Care e-book!Our 90-page e-book has everything youll need to know about feeding, socializing, health issues, drooling and shedding control and much more in one convenient e-book.
Socialization is of primary importance for the Corsi from a young age and basic obedience training (which is essential in any large breed canine.) A Cane Corso, raised from puppyhood in a loving environment where dominance is gently but firmly discouraged, should not exhibit aggression to their owners. Being an intelligent breed, Cane Corsos will assess potential danger to their human family before attacking an intruder.
However, due to the breeds loyal nature and proactive instincts, they will most likely attack an intruder who exhibits threatening behavior to the member of its human family. With a weight of up to 110 lbs (50 kgs) and a 700 pounds per square inch (PSI) bite, your Cane Corso is a breed that you need to train responsibly. Although some recommend more harsh measures, preventing contact, and playing for a duration after biting will gently teach your pup his bad behavior.
Due to its size and breed-specific tendencies, Cane Corsos do require special care when placed in an environment with small children. Even though they make loving additions to family homes, Corsis size and temperament do not lend itself well to toddlers and smaller children. They are not an ideal breed for first-time owners but make exceptional pets if they are aware of their protective natures and are willing to put in the hard work.
If you have been fortunate enough to add one of these great dogs to your family, you must realize that one of the main reasons people give them up to rescue organizations or take them to shelters is their aggressive behavior.
Provide leadership : A Cane Corso will watch your behavior more than most of the small lap dogs. The best way of providing leadership, and decreasing your puppys chances of showing dominance aggression, is by starting with obedience classes.
Shyness may be learned or inherited and your Cane Corso may run and hide or stand and bite. When you take your dog out for a walk each day, bring along a bag of his favorite treats, something very special. Mildly aggressive signs like staring down your visitors, growling, or even barking should be controlled by obedience commands.
Never encourage aggression : The members of this breed of dog are natural guardians and are usually suspicious of strangers, other animals, and sometimes even of objects. If you notice your Cane Corso begin to be aggressive with other dogs when he is still young, please use the methods I described above to stop this behavior. If you are not able to handle your Cane Corsos aggression problems you should consult an animal behaviorist before making any decisions as to his future.
In order for your Cane Corso to learn to be okay with those others, he needs plenty of your time, gentle training, and adequate leadership. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Question: I have a 6 month old cane corso she has been to training here and there she is overall has a calm temperament; when she plays with my sons she ends up jumping on them and biting them and she goes crazy.
Question: We brought home our female Cane Corso pup last night. If this were a Yorkie or Maltese it would not be that big a deal, but for a CC or a Golden such cases are serious and need to be evaluated while the puppy is young. I have trained some aggressive dogs that have been “stunted” by the vet telling the owner to not let the puppy out of the yard until all vaccines are given, at about 16 weeks.
Your puppy is going to be a lot happier if she can be in a kennel with the other dog, and then when she gets a little older, they can be loose in the house together. I keep a bowl of chicken feet on top of my microwave, and when I want to stop a puppy from chewing on a shoe or some other forbidden object, I replace it with a delicious substitute. It usually only takes one session to teach this, but you should practice it every day, and substitute what your dog leaves alone with some tasty treat, so that the lesson sticks with your cc even as she grows older.
Since this article is about teaching a puppy to be polite, take the time to read all of it and see what other ways you might train your cane corso. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 04, 2020: I have 2 small children and she plays rough with my daughter and growls and at times tries to snap at everyone in the house bc if food, bones even when we tell her to come or get off bed she wont listen my husband will grab her collar to remove her and she goes to snap at him.
I am the only one she hasnt tried any of that with I feel I know what she likes/dislikes but when my daughter stops her from grabbing food off the plate shell try and snap at her. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 17, 2020: Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 02, 2020:
Every time a guest comes over he instantly starts to bark i usually tell him to sit then lay down he does then when he see them again he jumps up and barks…my little cousin was walking by and all of a sudden he bits her on the arm i honestly dont know what to do anymore his behavioral problems are getting out of control we have guests over all the time…. i would really appreciate the advice thank you. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on December 30, 2019: I have a 125 pound cane corso i rescued…most sweet and loving male dog..he has been eith ud gor about 2 months now socialized and walked up to 3 to 4 x a day..he just started growling when i try to kiss his face.
When he came home few weeks ago for a few days he grawled at myself and granddaughter and was playing tug off war when I told my friend not to teach him as he big powerful enough to break a child arm. When I went to visit my dog I cough him and his son teaching him to grawl and playing tug off war.. He no longer walks nicely on the lead and he’s grawling at the other two dogs he lived with from a pup when he got a toy when before he was happy to share.
Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on July 04, 2018: He is on a raw diet and is always hungry as well He is taught to sit and wait before getting his food He is feed 3 Times a day ! Read this article on how to teach your dog to be polite and start using some of the gentle training suggested in the videos: https://pethelpful.com/dogs/teach-your-dog-impulse…
I can not take my Almost two year old make Cane Corso who is the most loving dog in the house out for a walk. Greetings, i bought a 9 month old CC, hes very friendly, lets the kids play with him, allows my poodle to eat out of the same bowl as him but today for the first time he snapped at my pit. when i tell him to sit he wont, so I push him down until he complies…. is this the correct way to teach him, he is always praised and is very gentle otherwise.
Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on March 29, 2018: Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on March 17, 2018: Jocelyn, do you think your dog is breaking into the cabinests because he is hungry, bored, or just does not know when his next meal is coming?
Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on February 01, 2018: Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on August 04, 2017: A five month old CC is past the sensitive socialization period so it will take a lot of work; if he was never used to small kids, I would be worried.
i just adopted a 5 month old Corso this past Friday you can tell hes never been socialized and is very scared of people except me of which he is very attached already. Just yesterday I rescued a 3 year-old Cane Corso female from the local animal shelter. We introduced her to our current dog, 11 year-old GSD mix, and the interaction was uneventful and we decided to go along with adopting the CC.
I would hate to take the CC back to the shelter but if she continues to snap at the GSD I will have no other choice. I did not use violence in his training, never praised him if he showed signs of aggresion (even barking at the door), started taking him out socializing since he was a month and a half. Do not choose a cane corso if you do not have time for heavy training, he has a huge destructive power, but in the right hands they’re a blessing.
Tip: Taking him on bike rides (while still immature, no more than an hour every 3 days if it’s on CONCRETE) will keep his energy at a moderate level and will stop the leash pulling. You will be amazed on how much energy he shows, taking him on a walk with your slow pace is only a tease for a cc. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on March 13, 2017:
Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on March 13, 2017: I have an almost 4 month old cane corso and we recently tried to socialize her with a group of dogs during a puppy play time. He is blind in one eye; he is showing sign of food agression, its like reflex for him to bite when someone is close enough while he is eating.
Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on February 05, 2017: Hello, how do you teach a 9 week old cc pup from chasing, growling and barking at kitties in the home? Hi Rachel My corso won’t let any one come in the house how do Teach him if the person has been invited not intruding.
Has been socialized when he was pup had lot of of play time is going to obedience classes but nothing seems to help with his barking and making himself look very intimidating. Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on September 16, 2012:
Accounts describing the potentially dangerous nature of the Cane corso are usually about aggression directed towards humans and not other dogs. Nonetheless, a Cane corso and other large breeds with strong tendencies to attack other dogs may likewise pose considerable danger to humans, particularly in a public setting.
The City Attorney and Police Animal Services unit are charging this dog owner, who has pled not guilty at the arraignment. The dog owners had their Cane Corso, Rex, neutered following this incident and also put him into a charm school for assessment and training, (I am assuming).
Hence, in the example described above, the victim needs to establish that the owner of the Cane Corso was negligent in some fashion perhaps in terms of how the dog was handled or maintained.
Should I Consult a Behaviorist?
This breed of dog is not as easy to handle as others because of his size and the work that he was developed for. If you are not able to handle your Cane Corso´s aggression problems you should consult an animal behaviorist before making any decisions as to his future.If you do not know of any behaviorists in your area, talk to your vet or a local dog trainer. They will often be able to give you advice on where you can get more help for your dog.Your Cane Corso was developed to be tough. He was selected to hunt and later was used for personal protection, which is why he might seem to be impervious to a lot of pain and might seem different than some other breeds. I believe that this dog is not like a wolf, though, and will be loyal and not despise you and try to take you down if he sees a moment of weakness. It is everyone else you need to worry about.In order for your Cane Corso to learn to be okay with those others, he needs plenty of your time, gentle training, and adequate leadership.
Questions & Answers
You are soon going to have a big, hard to control dog. If you do not teach her to respond now, to you and to your sons, you are going to have problems.If she does respond perfectly to all of you, the only other thing to do is to stop playing with her and working her up.This might cost more than you are willing to pay. All I can tell you is that the puppy might have psychological problems that will flare up when she is older. If this were a Yorkie or Maltese it would not be that big a deal, but for a CC or a Golden such cases are serious and need to be evaluated while the puppy is young.1. Obedience train your dog. This is vital. If your dog does not sit, lie down, and stay on command 100% of the time you have work to do. If you can not handle this get a trainer.2. Socialize your dog. You need to expose him to everything, every day. Take him for walks, introduce him to new people, etc. Find out if you have a canine good citizens program in your area (it is sponsored by the AKC).3. Have your dog neutered.This is not going to be easy. If you stick with it, however, you will have the best dog ever.Sometimes, with intense socialization, these dogs will get better. Often they will not.The problem with a potentially aggressive Cane Corso can not be overemphasized. Even if the dog responds 99.9% of the time, if he breaks loose and bites someone he is going to be branded a “dangerous dog”. The next time this occurs animal control will probably take him and put him down.The only potential solution you have is to socialize the dog even more. Make sure that he is used to going everywhere, and have everyone that meets him give him a treat. If this were my dog I would never take him out of the house without a good muzzle, both for his safety and the safety of others.If you want to read more about some techniques that might help, you can read my article at https://pethelpful.com/dogs/dog-to-dog-aggressionIf she is overly submissive, she might eventually become a fear biter, which is something you definitely want to avoid.You can teach her to sit and lie down at this age, but the most important lesson you can teach her now is “leave it.” If she is chewing on something, tell her “leave it” and replace the object she is chewing on with an acceptable substitute. I keep a bowl of chicken feet on top of my microwave, and when I want to stop a puppy from chewing on a shoe or some other forbidden object, I replace it with a delicious substitute. No puppy is going to growl when he knows that the alternative is so tasty.Here is an article on how to train a puppy early. I start as soon as five weeks with my Pitbulls but only for 5 minutes at a time. Any longer than that is too much.https://pethelpful.com/dogs/How-to-train-a-puppy-e…This article has a great video on how to teach leave it. It usually only takes one session to teach this, but you should practice it every day, and substitute what your dog leaves alone with some tasty treat, so that the lesson sticks with your cc even as she grows older.https://pethelpful.com/dogs/teach-your-dog-impulse…Since this article is about teaching a puppy to be polite, take the time to read all of it and see what other ways you might train your cane corso.If you have any other problems with her be sure to leave a question on one of those articles.Teach your dog to be polite with this article: https://hubpages.com/dogs/teach-your-dog-impulse-c…Teaching him “wait” will make both of your lives significantly better.If you want to start training her it is fine but it only needs to be for 5 minutes at a time. Young puppies get tired and distracted very quickly. If you try long training sessions she is going to get tired and burnt out.Here is an article I wrote about training early. I usually start at 5 weeks, but as I mentioned it is only for 5 mintues at a time!https://pethelpful.com/dogs/How-to-train-a-puppy-e…