The Cane Corso is a medium to large breed dog, it is very muscular and athletic looking. The FCI standard calls for the dog to stand 62cm-69cm at the withers and ranging from 40 to 50kg in weight. A Corso should be fairly tight skinned, except for around the neck where lose skin is expected.
One of the Corso’s primary features is its head. Its muzzle should be as long as it is wide and 33% the length of the entire skull. This head size and type also means that a corso has superior bite strength. A Corso’s jaw can emit 1000psi bite pressure, which is 3 times that of a Pitt bull. The whole head almost appears square in appearance.
Ears should naturally drop forward. But many breeders choose to crop them to an upward point, this is banned in Australia. Tails have also been known to be docket at the 4th vertebra but this is also banned in Australia.
Corso come in two basic coat colours: black and fawn with variations of these, white markings on the chest, toes, chin and bridge of nose are also seen, the smaller the marking the better. The coat is short and dense. Eye colour will reflect the coat colour, dark coated animals will have dark eyes, and light coated dogs will have light eyes.
|Group:||Group 6 (Utility)|
|General Appearance:||A medium to large sized dog. Robust and sturdy but nevertheless elegant. Lean with powerful muscles. He is now used as a guard, protection, police or tracking dog. Important proportions: The length of the head reaches 36% of the height at the withers. The dog is somewhat longer than high.|
|Temperament:||He is a guardian of property, family and livestock and is extremely agile and responsive. In the past it has been used for herding cattle and hunting big game.|
|Head And Skull:||The head is large and typically molossoid. The upper longitudinal axis of the skull and the muzzle converge slightly. Skull: Wide. At the zygomatic arches its width is equal to or greater than its length. Convex in front, it becomes fairly flat behind the forehead as far as the occiput. The medio-frontal furrow is visible. Stop: Marked Nose: Black and large with ample, open nostrils, on the same line as the nasal bridge. Muzzle: Noticeably shorter than the skull (ratio muzzle to skull approximately 1 to 2). Strong and square, the front part of the muzzle is flat. The lateral surfaces are parallel. The muzzle is as wide as it is long. The profile of the nasal bridge is straight. Lips: The upper lips hang moderately and cover the mandible, so that the lower profile of the muzzle is determined by the lips. Jaws: The jaws are very large, thick and curved.|
|Eyes:||Medium sized, ovoid, looking directly forward and slightly protruding. The eyelids are close fitting. The colour of the iris is as dark as possible, depending on the colour of the coat. The expression is keen and attentive.|
|Ears:||Triangular and drooping, wide, set on high above the zygomatic arches.|
|Mouth:||Slightly undershot. A level bite is acceptable but not sought after.|
|Neck:||Strong and muscular. As long as the head.|
|Forequarters:||Shoulders: Long, oblique and very muscular; Upper arm: Strong; Forearm: Straight and very strong; Carpal joint and pasterns: Elastic.|
|Body:||The body is somewhat longer than the height at the withers. The Corso is sturdily built but not squat.|
|Hindquarters:||Upper thigh: Long, wide, back line of thigh convex; Lower thigh: Strong, not fleshy; Hocks: Moderately angulated; Metatarsals: Thick and sinewy.|
|Feet:||The forefeet are cat feet and the hind feet are slightly less compact.|
|Tail:||Set on fairly high and very thick at the root. The tail is docked at the fourth vertebra. In action carried high, but never curled nor erect.|
|Gait/Movement:||Long stride with extended trot. The preferred gait is the trot.|
|Coat:||Short, shiny and very dense with a light undercoat.|
|Colour:||Black, lead-grey, slate grey, light grey, light fawn, stag red and dark fawn, brindle (stripes of different shades of fawn or grey). In fawn coloured and brindle dogs the black or grey mask on the muzzle should not go beyond the line of the eyes. A small white patch on the chest, on the tips of the feet and on the bridge of the nose is acceptable.|
|Sizes:||Height at withers: Males from 64 to 68 cm|
Females from 60 to 64 cm
Tolerance of 2 cm or less.
Weight: Males 45 to 50kg
Females 40 to 45 kg
|Faults:||Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in the exact proportion to its degree.|
|Notes:||Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.|
Cane Corso are easy to train as they have a strong willingness to please, and form a close bond with their owners, they are sweet and loveable. However they can be dominate at times, and may need a dominant owner. They would not harm a child but I would be very careful due to their size. Corso have a strong protective instinct and are highly suspicious of strangers they may ever be dangerous to trespassers. Corso are a quiet breed but will bark at anything they are unsure of.
A true corso should be indifferent when approached and should only react when a real threat is present