Dogo Argentino often referred to as Argentinian Mastiff or Argentine Dogo is a formidable, muscular and athletic dog that needs an owner who can be firm and consistent with him. This breed was created by 17-year-old Antonio Nores Martinez of Argentina. His passion was to create a breed that was well suited for big game hunting in the tricky topography of his country which encompasses rugged mountains and brutal plains. He started creating this breed by mixing the fighting dog of Cordoba (a combination of Boxer, Bull Terrier, Bulldog and Mastiff). Down the line, to increase the speed, height, scenting ability and hunting instinct, he amalgamated Great Dane, Irish wolfhound, Dogues de Bordeaux, Pointers and other breeds. This resulted in his ideal dog, the Dogo Argentino. A lot of hunters in Argentine and other areas started using this dog for boar hunting and this breed started getting fame right away. Just like Antonio Nores Martinez had envisioned, this breed is used not merely as hunting dog but also as a guard dog, guide dog, therapy dog and police dog as well.
Temper wise dogo argentino is not recommended for the first time owners. If you have some experience with dogs and want to own a dog that is watchful, fearless and compassionate, Dogo Argentino is the answer. You should see to it that you do your homework before getting this dog. See if you can find a reputable breeder and a get a Dogo that matches the criteria that we will share in next few paragraphs.
Since these dogs were bred to fight other dogs in past, they may tend to be a little aggressive towards other dogs. They may tend to be a little human aggressive as well. So you need to make sure that you start socializing them with other dogs and humans at an early age.
The Dogo is an active dog with high energy levels. He is always looking for something to do. You should be prepared to exercise him a lot throughout his life. You should also keep him busy in different tasks and activities which can range from jogging alongside you to his most favouritethat is big game hunting. You should always keep in mind that a bored Dogo Argentino is a destructive Dogo Argentino. Since Dogo Argentino was originally bred to be a hunting dog, he has a high prey drive and chasing and killing are his first instincts. You should try your best to stop him from chasing and killing other small animals. You should also make to have a high fence in order to keep him from harming other animals or humans in your neighbourhood.
As an ownerand leader of this dog, you need to make sure that you start socializing him from an early age and keep socializing him throughout his life. You should try to buy the puppy from a breeder who raises them along with other puppies and who exposes them to a variety of household scenarios, sights and sounds. You should socialize them with humans by taking them to your neighbours and markets along with you. You can socialize them with other dogs by taking them to dog parks etc.
Height & Appearance
The ideal Dogo Argentino should have a good bone structure and explosive muscular body structure too with as little fat as possible. He should look like a lighter and more muscular Molosser. His height can range from 24 to 27 inches and his weight can range from 80 to 100 pounds. He should have good proportions too. His muzzle should be as long as his skull. He shouldhave a deep chest too which will help increase the lung capacity. The body of the Dogo should be more inclined towards length instead of height, and should give a rectangular look. Strong temporal and masseter muscles are essential in the skill. This will ensure a strong bite. Since the Dogo is a holding dog, he needs a lot of air flow from his nostrils and through his mouth while holding down the prey. To ensure good air flow, the lips should be short.
The eyes of the Dogo Argentino should be small and triangular in shape, covering the white area of the eyes. The black area should be as dark as possible. The eye rims should be black which help prevent the de-pigmentation.
The Dogo Argentino has a white coat and is very easy to groom. All you have to do is to give him a bath every three months or whenever he looks dirty. You should clean his ears and trim his toe nails once a week. You can also use a vet approved tooth paste to clean his teeth and gums. You should start grooming him at an earlier age so that he becomes accustomed to it.
Dogo Argentino is well known for his dual personality. He can be very loyal, friendly and protective towards the family and at the same time can be fierce and vicious towards any threat. This goes without saying that to own a Dogo Argentino, you will need to act as the pack leader. Unlike the Golden retrievers, the Dogos have a dominant and obstinate personality. They will make you prove that you are the pack leader. You should be able to prove this to them on a consistent basis. Since this breed was created with the goal of hunting big game, they have a strong prey drive and will start chasing anything that runs. You need to make sure that you stop them from doing so. You should not keep them with cats or other smaller dogs.
This versatile breed can thrive in any type of living conditions. Although a medium sized yard is the ideal to keep a Dogo Argentino, but he can live happily in even an apartment provided that you give him good physical exercise daily. But you should make sure to bring him in and not let him stay outside when the temperature falls below freezing point.
Life expectancy of dogo argentino is 10 – 12 years.
Dogo Argentino can suffer from hip dysplasia, autoimmune thyroiditis and deafness,allergies and different skin problems.
In a nutshell, Dogo Argentino is an amazing breed that performs well in different fields like hunting and guarding etc and is a perfect breed for an experienced owner.