CANE CORSO ITALIANO
1957: Professor Giovanni Bonatti published an article mentioning the need to save the Cane Corso breed.
1970’s: Breed recovery begins.
Early 1980’s: The recovery process for the Cane Corso begins as others take an interest in the breed.
1983: Dr. Breber and five others form SACC – The Society Amatori Cane Corso. Dr. Giovanni Ventura developed a summarized breed standard that was published in „Il Cane Corso“.
1984: SACC made its first contact with ENCI.
1985: The Cane Corso breed is officially introduced to ENCI.
1986: Dr. Breber leaves SACC for unknown reasons. Dr. Antonio Morsiani is commissioned by ENCI to draft a standard for the Cane Corso. After evaluating some 90 or more subjects, Basir and his sister were used as the male and female prototypes for the standard.
1987: ENCI approves the standard for the Cane Corso.
1988: A survey was done on more than 50 Corsos from several different locations throughout Italy to compare their resemblance to the newly proposed standard. ENCI was then presented with the results.
1990: ENCI allows Open Book Certification for adults that are consistent with the standard. A total of 561 Cane Corsos were certified by ENCI approved judges. In order to be approved, the dogs had to be inspected by two ENCI certified judges. Pups born from two certified parents were eligible for registration in Open Book as well as any offspring born from these dogs.
1994: ENCI recognizes the Cane Corso as the 14th Italian breed.
1996: The Cane Corso is presented to FCI and is recognized on an international level. (Please note that FCI is an internationally known registry while FIC is a privately owned registry in the U.S.).
1997: SACC sends letter to ICCF stating they have no interest in recognizing the ICCF as the American breed club for the Cane Corso due to failures to meet SACC requirements.
1999: ENCI removes SACC as the official breed club for the Cane Corso. To date, there is no officially recognized breed club for the Cane Corso in Italy.
2003/2004: ENCI turns down the AICC and once again recognizes SACC as the official breed club for the Cane Corso.
The Cane Corso has been seen throughout the countryside of Southern Italy for centuries. They are a utility dog that is devoted to family, while also being a powerful creature strong enough to take down wild animals. They are well known by historians to be courageous boar hunters and bull baiters. Their usefulness in the 19th century declined and so did their numbers. In the 1970’s, a small group of men came together to prevent the demise of this breed, who’s authenticity can be proven in poems and stories that date as far back as the 15th century.
Their genealogy can be traced back to the Canis Pugnax, the Roman War dog of the first century. They would accompany their handler onto the battlefields where they would act as an unprecedented guardian. The tenaciousness of this dog was so extreme they were used in the arenas to fight against lions, bears, and other wild animals. The need for such an aggressive dog went away when this form of entertainment went out of style.
Dog fanciers began to breed dogs which possessed certain traits that were needed to assist in their life’s endeavors. The outcome was a dog that was versatile in his abilities, as well as, a good family dog. The Italian farmers managed to maintain much of the look of the Canis Pugnax, but a version that fits into an ordinary farm and family lifestyle. Old sculptures and paintings depict medium to large size dogs with large, blocky heads and powerful muzzles hunting and catching wild animals.