With his showy white coat, muscular frame and sharply contrasting dark nose, the Argentine Dogo is a striking dog that is easily picked out in a crowd. Prized for his strength, courage and loyalty, the Dogo was originally bred for the purpose of hunting wild game and is still used for boar hunting today.
Argentine Dogo History
It was the Argentinean brothers, Dr. Antonio Nores Martinez and his brother Agustin, who earn credit for first developing the Argentine Dogo. Back in the 1920s, these two brothers decided that they wanted to create a dog that was both a pack hunter and a guardian, as well as a loyal companion dog. Crossing the now extinct Dog of Cordoba with other breeds such as the French Mastiff, the Boxer, Bulldog, Great Dane, the Irish Wolfhound and Spanish Mastiffs, these two brothers continued until they had created a dog of great strength, power, courage and stamina. Every inch of him was designed to make am a more efficient hunter; from his heat-reflecting snow-white coat to his lack of dog to dog aggression, made him a perfect pack hunter. Over time, he would eventually evolve into the dog that we know today and would be used to hunt down vicious prey, such as wild boar.
Popularity of the Argentine Dogo waned severely in the early 1990s, when these magnificent dogs were taken and trained to participate in illegal dog fights. This led to the Argentine Dogo being banned in several countries, and facing severe regulations in others. To this day, fans of the breed continue to fight against this mindset and work to breed the sound and stable build – Dogos that work well with other dogs, just like the breed was originally intended.
Argentine Dogo Appearance
The Argentine Dogo represents his foundation breeds well; boasting the athletic and yet muscular build of the Mastiff and Bulldog breeds, he is a powerful dog that clearly appears to be a force to be reckoned with. Easily noted for his massive head (with either close cropped or natural ears), snow-white coat with black nose and ever-ready disposition, he is a beauty to behold and extremely loyal. This does not however mean an Argentine Dogo is the dog for every one – despite her sometimes clownish appearance and loyal disposition, the Argentine Mastiff should still be handled with care.
Standing 23 1/2 to 27 inches tall at the shoulder and weighing a minimum of 80 pounds, the Argentine Dogo is a massive and powerful dog. His coat should be predominantly white, though he possesses dark skin, particularly noticed around the eyes and over his nose. Some Argentine Dogos will possess a black spot on the head and are known as pirata – this is an accepted marking, allowed by the Federacion Cinologica Argentina.
Argentine Dogo Temperament
The Dogo is known for his extreme loyalty and protective qualities. He is said to be very gentle and loving towards human children that he’s raised around, and is also known to be good with family pets when properly socialized. This however, does not mean to the Argentine Dogo is the dog for every one – in fact, the willfulness of this breed and their determination makes them very difficult to train and it takes a person with a great deal of consistency, authority, and persistence in order to work with them. Many Argentine Dogo breeders will tell you that the Argentinian Mastiff is a very stubborn and independent breed, but for right person they do make a wonderful pet.
Argentine Dogo Exercise Info
The Argentine Dogo can adapt to the city life fairly well, that he will need several brisk walks or jogs per day. Ideally, in order to keep the Dogo happy, it’s best to have access to a fully fenced yard or to take regular trips to a dog park. Remember that the Argentine Dogo is a working dog, and has been bred for this purpose, both in build and temperament. Failing to give an Argentine Dogo the proper amount of exercise can result in obesity and other health problems, as well as leading to boredom and the possibility of destructive behavior.
Argentine Dogo Grooming Info
Grooming your Argentine Dogo puppy is a very simple – a weekly brushing with a medium stiff brush will help to remove any dead hair or gander from his skin, as well as helping to distribute the natural oils throughout his coat. As far as bathing, the Argentine Dogo should be given a bath once a month unless he is dirty or seems to need a bath sooner. Careful attention should be paid to the Dogo skiers, checking for any signs of redness per odor that can suggest an infection. You can also clean you Dogo’s ears at this time, gently using a Q-tip, but it’s important never to stick the Q-tip or any other object down into the ear canal.
While his coat is designed to reflect sunlight, the Dogo can also be prone to sunburn and heatstroke. Limit your dogo’s outdoor time during the hot summer and always be sure that he has plenty of fresh water and shade.
Argentine Dogo Training Info
The Argentine Dogo is not the type of dog that one teaches to sit in and then forgets about. Obedience training on these large dogs should begin at a puppy age, and usually continues on throughout the dog’s life. They are a breed that is known for their independence and strong will, often leading to dominance struggles within the household. For this reason, they require consistency and a great deal of authority, coupled with positive reinforcement.
Argentine Dogo Health Info
Like many large breeds of dog, the Argentine Dogo can be prone to hip dysplasia, so it’s very important to work with a breeder with a reputable kennel and one that screens regularly. Additionally, since you are dealing with a white breed dog, pigment-related deafness is a potential problem and should also be tested. Dogs may suffer from either bilateral deafness or unilateral deafness, both of which can make the Dogo highly unpredictable and more prone to biting if startled.
Argentine Dogo Right Breed Info
The Argentine Dogo is a magnificent breed and a rewarding companion for the right person. However, this Argentinian Mastiff is not the dog for everyone. Requiring a great deal of authority and a strong personality to keep the stubborn and willful nature of this dog under control, they’re certainly not the breed for a novice dog owner. Anyone considering to purchase an Argentinian Dogo should realize that they are making a commitment towards the dog and that this will take a great deal of patience and time.
The Argentinian Dogo is said to be very loyal and protective of children he is raised with, however, no dog should be left with the child unsupervised. Additionally, the Argentine Dogo is a very large breed dog that can accidentally knock over one who is unsteady on their feet, making them a questionable choice for the household with small children.
Additionally, due to dog fighting, some strains of Argentine Dogo have been bred with a more aggressive temperament towards other dogs – something that was purposely bred out of the original breed. Due to this, care must always be taken to work with an established and reputable breeder.
Owning an Argentine Dogo is a great responsibility. However, if you’re ready to make the commitment and have the determination required to owning this independent breed, you may find that the Argentine Dogo is the perfect pet for you!