Dogo Canario (also known as the Presa Canario, Perro de Presa Canario, or Canary Dog) was developed in the Canary Islands and is a descendant of Mastiffs brought to the islands by Spanish explorers. The dogs were used to control and herd cattle and to protect farms, businesses, and property. During the years since the explorers, the Mastiffs were mixed with other breeds and at times were also used for blood sports. After the prohibition of blood sports, the breed almost disappeared, but in the 1970s and 1980s fanciers banded together and saved it.
The Dogo Canario dog breed stands 22 to 25.5 inches tall and weighs 90 to 115 pounds. The body is slightly longer than the dog is tall at the shoulder. The head is broad with a short muzzle. The ears can be cropped or left dropped. The chest is wide, the body strong, and the tail saberlike. The coat is short, and there is no undercoat. These dogs are fawn with a dark mask or brindle. The Dogo Canario coat needs twice weekly brushing with a soft bristle brush or curry comb.
The Dogo Canario dog breed needs moderate exercise. A walk morning and evening and a playtime in between will satisfy most, although puppies can be more active. This is a very serious dog breed. It will play, but in most situations it prefers to watch its territory. Dogo Canario is a watchful and protective breed. Early socialization is very important so the dog learns to live in her world. Training is very important, too, as this highly intelligent breed needs a job to do. She needs firm, structured, yet fun training.
This dog breed will always protect its owner, even to the point of putting itself at risk. The breed, therefore, needs an experienced owner who can train and control the dog. Dogos Canarios are good with the children they’ve been raised with but may not understand or tolerate rough play with other children. They may not be good with other dogs or small pets. Health concerns include hip and elbow dysplasia and eyelid and knee problems.
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