I am Viktória Szentes, I live in Nagyrecse, a small village in Western Hungary. Presently we live together with 5 Cane Corsos and we have a kennel. It’s name is Cassiopea’s Pearl Kennel. The pack includes 3 females and 2 males. All of them are on different energy levels, ranging from very low to very high. In pack, they come up with each other very well. We chose the Cane Corso breed, because I wanted to have a strong-willed molosser type. Who, at the same time does not bark without reason, like, for example the German Shepherds. They only show that they are present and bark, when they have a serious reason for it. At the same time, the Cane Corso loves its family and loves children. I have a 5 year old boy, he was born into the “Corso world”. Our dogs love him and never had even one bad move or manner towards him. Of course, I taught my son, how to behave with our dogs and our dogs, how to behave with kids. If you are a mother, you should teach your kid what is allowed to do with dogs. And of course, you should also teach your Corsos, what is allowed to with a small child. The history of the Cane Corso dates back to ancient Italy. In the past ancient molossers were crossed with other strong breeds. Basically they were used for hunting big game, like boars. They were used not only for holding the boars while the hunter gets to the scene, but to get and kill it. The were used for hunting in packs. According to other sources they were used in warfare as a war companion dogs for soldiers. Of course, they were used as guard dogs as well, even from the earliest times. It is important to know that these dogs are not called Cane Corso, because they originated from Corsica, as many believe. The word Corso originates from the Cohort phrase, which means guardian, guardian dog. Nowadays, the breed has two basic types. One of them is the molosser, mastiff type, which is heavier. The second is the leaner, athletic type, which is faster and more agile. According to our experiences, it is easier to work with the athletic type. Their head type and muscle structure makes it easier for them to work hard. The heavier, molosser type looks great on shows, more robust and keeps strangers away only by the look. Because of their short head type, they are less able to work effectively. They can’t stand heat easily as the short muzzle cannot cool down the air they are breathing well. Summertime is a big challenge for them. Both types are present in the show rings all over the world In many cases show ring judges do not evaluate on the basis of the breed standard, but rather by their personal preferences. Some judges who prefer the look of the dogs and others, who prefer the temperament, or movement quality. As I see now, on shows, both types can be successful, depending on the judge who is actually in the ring. Among Cane Corso lovers and breeders, the molosser type is less preferred. The different color is said to be the consequence of inbreeding of other breeds. The grey variant is said to be the effect of the Mastino Napoletano and the brown of the Bullmastiff. As I said, presently we have 5 Cane Corsos in our kennel. All of them are on different energy and dominance levels. If you plan to buy a Cane Corso puppy, it is important that the Cane Corso is not advised for a first time dog owner. Nevertheless, if you decide to have one, you should definitely consult the breeder. Ask, which puppy is the most calm and easy-going and have a low energy and dominance level. If you choose a more energetic and dominant puppy, you will have to spend a lot of time and energy to make it an ideal dog for you. The Cane Corso is absolutely not suitable for keeping them separated, or leaving them alon for long times. Even in cases if you visit the and feed them once a day and left alone for the rest of the day. This is a fantastic breed, which needs to be close to its master, human friend. I absolutely not recommend this breed to those, who does not have enough time to deal with his dog. This breed needs a very tight bond with its owner and cannot be kept on chain or closed in a kennel for long time. It is also not recommended for week personalities. For those, who allow everything for their dogs, the Cane Corso is not an ideal choice. They are very big and very strong with a strong-willed, dominant mindset. If they feel that they can rule the owner, they will make use of it and become very dominant, even if they are a low energy level dog. If the owner is not the boss, the Cane Corso will be the boss. This is not a normal and harmonic situation and nor the dog, nor the owner will be happy about it. A situation like this can lead to aggression, mental problems and other defects. This is the reason why it is extremely important to think over sincerely, whether the Cane Corso breed is for you. A lot of people ask me whether the Cane Corso is good in guard dog trainings. As they are a very intelligent breed, they are very well suited for protective and guard work. They are highly trainable and a lot of Corsos get to the highest level and get the IPO3 certification. In many cases they can be effective service dogs as well, let’s think of the Italian Police Corps, who use Cane Corsos for service. Their protective work is very powerful, I can compare it to the Rottweilers’ abilities. They are not so fast like for example a German Shepherd, or a Malinois. But if they have to do something, they will definitely do it and very powerfully, because of their strength. Their bite is approximately on the same level with the Rottweilers’. What is one of their strongest trait is that they are above the average persistent. This is why, they can be used for tracking work effectively. As they are molossers, during tracking work they do not give up, they keep on going until the find the object. In our kennel, we keep our Cane Corsos freely. This way they behave like a pack, which is the best for them. It makes them stronger and they learn how to interact with each other in a natural way. If they meet other dogs, they know the signs, know what is allowed accepted by the other and what is not. We never lock them up in the kennel for a long time, except the females in heat. Very rarely we use a short separation as a punishment for inappropriate behavior. They all live in family surroundings and it is extremely important that they are usually close to us, humans. Because of this, if a new owner takes one of our puppies home, the young dog arrives to its new home with former experiences about the world. The puppy will not be frightened by the sound of a car, the voice of a bird, If we have puppies, we try to let them know as much as possible about all things that surrounds them. As they are part of the pack, they learn those behavioral patterns what they can use while growing up. They also learn how to behave with (human) kids, which is also very important. My son helps me a lot in this learning curve, he plays a lot with our dogs and the puppies. If the dogs are in the house, he pets and hugs them a lot. This way the dogs learn that he is also a human, who is a little bit different than the grown ups. They handle him gently and they know that they cannot harm him and they must accept him and his orders. Like every breeds, the Cane Corsos have some health issues as well. The most common is the dysplasia, which can be in the hip, elbow, or shoulder. The cherry-eye, which is the is a disorder of the nictitating membrane. If it happens regularly, it should be corrected by medical operation. Sometimes epilepsy, heart, or kidney malfunctions. I deeply advise to buy a puppy from a serious breeder, who checks the health status of their dogs and gives documentation with them. Before buying a puppy from a breeder, ask for the dysplasia screening results of the parents. Unfortunately, even positive results cannot be a 100% insurance that our dog will be dysplasia free in the future. Very few people know that dysplasia is an inherited disease only in 30% of all cases. The remaining 70% is caused by holding conditions of the owners. Inappropriate feeding and too early hard training can cause it as well. We usually say that a Cane Corso below 1,5 years of age is a “Christmas tree decoration”. They must not be trained and moved very hard before that age. Walks should be light and not more that 10 – 30 minutes/walk, do not force them to run too much. Hard jumping, frequent steps on stairs, tough plays with adult dogs should be skipped. If we keep our eyes on all of these, we will have high probability for a healthy adult dog who can be with us for long years.