The Dogo Argentino is one of the most popular dogs in the Americas. It is a bulldog-type molossoid. It is distinguished by its large size, its white fur and its powerful appearance. It is undoubtedly one of the most impressive dogs that exist.
The most elegant member of the mastiff family is the Dogo Argentino. He looks formidable, unapproachable, sometimes it seems that this dog with a white coat is blowing cold. In fact, only strangers need to fear the Argentinean, especially those who pose a threat to family members in which the Dogo Argentino lives. The dog is infinitely loyal to its master.
With the right upbringing, the Dogo Argentino can be the perfect bodyguard, protector, hunting assistant, guide, or just a loyal companion you can rely on anywhere and in any situation. It is not for nothing that these dogs are rightfully called the symbol of Argentina.
If you are thinking of adopting a Dogo Argentino, be it a puppy or an adult, it will be very important that you educate yourself thoroughly on the details of his education and training, his characteristics and the care he will need to be happy and healthy.
In this ‘ Pets Feed ‘ breed sheet, we will explain everything you need to know about the Dogo Argentino, whether it is related to its character, to the lifestyle that suits you or to some of the diseases that can affect it.
Origin of the Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is the only Argentine breed not to have disappeared. It was developed in the Argentine province of Córdoba in the 1920s by Dr. Antonio Nores Martínez, looking for an exceptionally strong and resistant dog, who was a real fighter. At that time, dog fighting was very common in Argentine fields and elsewhere in the world. In Cordoba, the “fighting dogs of Cordoba” were used for these activities. Nores Martínez used these dogs as parents of the Dogo Argentino, but he sought more stability of character and better control of aggression.
When dogfights began to be frowned upon by society, Nores Martínez led the Dogo Argentino to the climb and big game. The result was as expected and the Dogo Argentino became a hunter of wild boars, pumas, peccaries and foxes.
To reach the standard we know today, many other breeds of dogs have been crossed. In addition to the Cordovan fighting dogs, the Dogo Argentino has ancestors such as the bull terrier, the English bulldog, the Great Dane, the Pyrenean mastiff, the boxer, the Spanish mastiff, the mastiff, the Irish wolfhound and pointer. The breed was officially recognized by the Argentine Cynological Federation in 1964 and by the International Cynological Federation (FCI) in 1973.
Physical characteristics of the Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is a large breed of Argentinian prey dog, perhaps one of the strongest and most robust in the world. Its structure is solid and resistant, square and muscular, designed to hunt any animal without rest. It has a head with a large proportion, with a square muzzle of great power. Its lips are thin and its jaw is very resistant, which allows it to catch a prey and not to release it at any time.
In his head, dark and small eyes stand out, very separate from each other, as well as his ears, triangular and drooping on the sides. In some countries, the amputation of part of the ears is still allowed to give the specimens a more dangerous appearance, being upwards, a negligible practice which must be eradicated worldwide.
The neck and chest of the Argentinian mastiff without very muscular and strong parts, as well as the legs, not excessively long, but broad enough to allow the dog to run and jump with unequaled power. It also shows a long, thick tail, which it usually wears at medium height.
One of the main characteristics of this breed is that it has a very strong and resistant bite, which it can maintain for a long time. This is the reason why it is a potentially dangerous dog if it does not receive an adequate education from a puppy. However, this does not mean that the Dogo Argentino is aggressive by nature, but only that he needs adequate care.
Size of the Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is a fairly large dog, which can measure between 65 and 72 centimeters high up to the cross, a little less in the case of females, which remain between 60 and 63 centimeters. As for the weight, the male can easily reach 55 kilos, with a minimum of 45 kilos, between 40 and 43 in females.
The coat of the Dogo Argentino is very thin and rough to the touch, of a generally white color, although a small brown or black spot is allowed on the head. It is a type of fur very easy to maintain, which hardly requires care, brushing or bathing.
Dogo Argentino bite
The strength of the Dogo Argentino bite has been measured around 500 PSI, which places it among the dogs with the strongest bite of its kind. Like the rest of his strengths, his instincts predominate, so this quality like any other must be trained because his nature leads him to bite and not to let go for any reason, not even the pain.
His skull and chewing muscles adapt perfectly, which gives him great power. The collected and elastic lips allow the Dogo Argentino to hold his bite for a long time and not to suffocate thanks to the additional breath.
The extra breathing of the Dogo Argentino is of the utmost importance and necessity in its biology, because due to the lack of sweat glands in its skin, it does not sweat and this type of breathing helps it to fight against temperature changes in his body which can cause serious damage, preventing this elimination of water vapor, this is called regulatory polysnea.
Character of the Dogo Argentino
Despite its past as a fighting dog and a hunting dog, the Dogo Argentino is another proof that the education we offer our dog will greatly contribute to giving a proper character to family life. The Dogo Argentino is an affectionate and loyal dog, certainly protective but tolerant towards other dogs and other pets if he is offered the appropriate socialization.
It is a smart and dedicated dog, very sensitive, who will create a very strong bond with those who consider its family. It’s perfect for those who have older children at home because they like to play and offer loving kisses, which surprises and captivates many people. It is very patient and kind, very reliable if it had the opportunity to educate it from its young age.
However, the Dogo Argentino is not a suitable dog for everyone. its great intelligence drives it to be bored with a certain ease. That’s why it needs an experienced person in responsible pet ownership, education and training and the dog’s correct motivation to offer it new experiences and positive activities. It also needs a dynamic family that understands the needs of this dog and adapts to a proactive lifestyle.
Finally, we will add that it is very important to monitor all the interactions that a Dogo Argentino adopts in its adult stage. As with any dog, abuse and lack of socialization can harm this noble breed ce by making it nervous, shy or responsive, depending on the case. This is a recommendation we would make with any breed, regardless of its morphology, but in this case, it is more important because of the demonstrated physical ability and strength.
How to socialize the Dogo Argentino
The Dogo Argentino is not an aggressive dog (attacks against humans or other dogs are very rare) but socialization at an early age is essential.
It is important that the Dogo Argentino puppy gets used to the presence of our friends and family, in order to gradually get used to strangers and that in future they will not react badly in these situations.
The same should be done with other dogs and animals, get the puppy used to playing and live with them daily to socialize properly.
Dogo Argentino Health
The Dogo Argentino is a pretty healthy breed. Nevertheless, it will be useful to visit the veterinarian every 6 months and to make sure that it does not suffer from any problems. We will also follow certain routines such as the dog vaccination schedule and deworming (external and internal). These habits will help prevent certain contagious diseases and the presence of parasites in dogs. Let’s not forget that castration is highly recommended. The most common diseases of the Argentine bulldog are:
- Hereditary deafness
- Hip dysplasia
In addition to all that is mentioned above, we must offer this dog a quality diet and a proper hygienic routine.
The life expectancy of the Dogo Argentino is greater than 10 or 12 years, but this figure can be exceeded if you take care of it properly
The Dogo Argentino will need 2 to 3 walks a day, during which it will be able to sniff, investigate and interact with other animals. It will also be helpful to encourage it to moderate exercise, through games and toys or various activities such as performing a circuit of agility. The Dogo Argentino will benefit from the mental stimulation that this type of activity will give.
It is strongly recommended to provide enough space for living, such as a house with a garden, but it can perfectly adapt to an urban lifestyle if appropriate physical and mental activity is provided. In the house, the Dogo Argentino is usually a calm dog.
You need to keep the Dogo Argentino indoors, it cannot withstand the winter frosts, living outdoors. If the apartment is small, a large and active dog will not feel comfortable in it. He needs space and freedom of movement. In the house from the first days, install bowls for food and water, a stove bench. Teach your pet to sleep, rest only in your corner and eat only in the right place at a certain time.
In any case, the Dogo Argentino must be walked twice daily. Each walk should ideally last at least two hours. It is not enough just to walk with a dog at a leisurely pace down the street. Such an animal should be given the opportunity to throw out the accumulated energy, run, jump, play with a ball, etc. If this is not done, the dog will arrange games in the house, spoil furniture, and annoy other pets.
Loneliness is destructive for a Dogo Argentino. You cannot leave the dog for a long time. Boredom will deteriorate his character; unjustified aggression may appear. The same can happen if you put a dog on a chain, he is not designed for such treatment and content.
The Dogo Argentino tolerates heat normally, this is facilitated by a light color and a not too short muzzle, which cannot be said about other representatives of the Molossian family. This does not mean that the dog is capable of being in direct sunlight for a long time without sad consequences, it is recommended to walk it where there is shade, and best of all – in the morning and in the evening.
In addition to the correct conditions of keeping, to maintain a beautiful and healthy appearance of the dog, you need to regularly, correctly carry out the following procedures for caring for the animal:
- There is no problem with the short coat of the Dogo Argentino. To put it in order, it is enough from time to time to comb the wool with a mitten specially designed for such a procedure. Twice a year, during periods of heavy shedding, it is recommended to groom the coat with a special comb and furminator.
- Bathing is often not necessary, especially with detergents. We arrange general bathing 2-3 times a year. Of course, the white coat of the mastiff often gets dirty, you can clean it with a damp terry towel.
- We examine and clean the ears once a week. For this, it is better to buy a special lotion at a veterinary pharmacy.
- Dog’s teeth require cleaning. The dog cleans them by gnawing on cartilage and fresh bones. You can also buy special toys for teeth or clean your pet’s fangs yourself using a brush and paste.
- Eye problems are very rare in the breed. This does not mean that you do not need to follow and inspect them. In case of heavy discharge from the eyes, in case of injuries or inflammation, immediately take the dog to the veterinarian.
- We cut the claws with nippers or tongs designed for this. Usually the dog grinds them off himself, but in winter, when there is no opportunity to run for a long time on a hard road surface, the claws have to be cut off.
It is the owner’s responsibility to provide the dog with a balanced diet. You can feed the Dogo Argentino with both natural products and ready-made feed. Special attention should be paid to the nutrition of such pets. This is due to the fact that Argentines are prone to food allergies.
It is better to compose a diet based on the advice of a veterinarian. For example, chicken meat should not be included in ready-made feeds and should not be fed in its natural form. Chicken is the strongest allergen for the Dogo Argentino. You need to change the components of the diet gradually, very carefully.
The slightest change in diet can lead to an allergic reaction in the form of redness and severe itching. Mandatory food for the Argentinean mastiff is raw meat, boiled offal.
Training and education
Such a serious dog as the Dogo Argentino needs early socialization, education and training courses. From day one, the owner must establish his leadership over the dog. If the pet decides that he is the owner of the house, and not a person, then there will be no question of obedience.
From two months, the puppy needs to be taught the simplest commands (sit, can’t, place …) and the rules of behavior in the house. Then socialization is carried out, acquaintance with the outside world. While walking, introduce your pet to strangers, give the opportunity to chat and play with other dogs.
In no case should you encourage anger in a Dogo Argentino and develop aggression in him. It is only with hunting dogs that lessons on baiting and chasing game should be carried out, but in this case they should not be aggressive towards people and pets.
It is better to take training courses at special sites under the guidance of a dog handler. During the lessons, physical punishment and irritability on the part of the owner are unacceptable. The main thing is calmness, consistency, persistence. For diligence, obedience and correct execution of commands, it is worth rewarding the dog with an affectionate word and a tasty treat.
To properly educate a Dogo Argentino, it is absolutely necessary to use a positive training technique, you have to be persistent and review what has been learned day after day.
It is advisable to allow him to expend his excess energy in advance, either by playing with other dogs, or by exercising.
In no case should we use punishments (much less physical), because he can also learn to be aggressive and given his size and strength, this is something that we must avoid.
Dogo Argentino fun facts
This breed is one of the four developed in Argentina, although only the Argentinian mastiff and the Argentinian dog Pila still exist today. The other two, the Argentinean polar dog and the Cordoba fighting dog, disappeared a long time ago.
The laws of many countries set specific rules for the possession of these animals, and even some countries prohibit having these animals as pets.
- The Dogo Argentino is prohibited in the following countries: Spain, Italy, Great Britain, Romania, Norway, Turkey, USA, Bermuda, Portugal, Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, Ukraine,
If you want to share your life with an Dogo Argentino dog, the first thing you need to do is to know all the relevant laws to be able to have it. In addition, it is essential that you contact an expert breeder of the breed and with references, so that he offers you health guarantees on the puppy and that he can give you all the information you need about this beautiful dog breed.