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UTILIZATION - Watch, protection, police, and track dog.

Working group 1, dogs like Argentine Dogo and Black Russian Terrier.

Its direct ancestor is the "Canis Pugnax" (the old Roman Molossian) of which he is the light version employed in the hunting of large wild animals and also as an "auxiliary warrior" in battles. For years, he has been a precious companion of the Italic population. Employed as property, cattle and personal guard dog. They were also used for hunting purposes. In the past this breed was common all over Italy as an ample iconography and historiography testify. In the recent past, he has found an excellent preservation area in Southern Italy, especially in Puglia, Lucania and Sannio. His name derives from the Latin "Cohors" which means "Guardian", "Protector".

Medium-to large size dog, strongly built but elegant, with powerful long muscles, very distinguished, he expresses strength, agility and endurance. The general conformation is that of a mesomorphic animal whose body is longer than the height at the withers, harmonious as regards the form and disharmonious as regards the profile. Get additional information from comments to standard.

IMPORTANT PROPORTIONS - The length of the body is about ll% over the height at the withers. The total length of the head reaches 1/3 of the height at the withers. The length of the muzzle is equal to1/3 of the total length of the head. The height of the thorax is of the height at the withers and it is equal to the height of the limb at the elbows.

Intelligent, active, even-minded, an unequaled watch and protection dog. Docile and affectionate with owner, loving with children and with family, if necessary he becomes a terrible and brave protector of people, house and property. He is easily trained.

Brachycephalic. Its total length reaches 1/3 of the height at the withers. The bizygomatic width, which is equal to the length of the skull, is more than half the total height of the head, reaching 2/3. The upper longitudinal axes of the skull and of the muzzle are slightly convergent. The perimeter of the head, measured at the cheek-bones is more than twice the total length of the head even in the females. The head is moderately sculptured with zygomatic arches stretched outwards. The skin is firm sticking to the tissues underneath, it is smooth and quite stretched.

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Skull -
Seen from the front it is wide and slightly curved, seen from the side it draws an irregular curve that, accentuated in the subregion of the forehead, becomes flat along the external saggital crest. Seen from the top, it looks square because of the outstretching of the zygomatic arches and the powerful muscles swathing it. Frontal sinuses well developed and stretched forward, deep forehead hollow and visible median furrow. Occipital crest not much developed. Supraorbital fossae slightly marked.

Stop - Very marked because of the very developed and bulging frontal sinuses and because of the prominent superciliary arches.


Nose -
It is on the same line as the nose pipe. Seen from the side it mustn't stick out from the front vertical margin of the lips but be, with its front, on the same vertical line as the front of the muzzle. It has to be voluminous, rather flat on top, with wide nostrils, opened and mobile, wet and cool. The pigmentation is black but can be blue (gray) on blue or formentino dogs

Muzzle -
Very broad and deep. The width of the muzzle must be almost equal to its length, which reaches 1/3 of the total length of the head. Its depth is more than 50% the length of the muzzle. Due to the parallels of the muzzle sides and to the fullness and the width of the whole jaw, the anterior face of the muzzle is flat and in the shape of a trapezoid widest at the base. The nasal bridge has a rectilinear profile and it is rather flat. The upper lips determine the lower side profile of the muzzle; the sub orbital region shows a very slight chisel.

Lips -
Rather firm. Seen from the front, the upper lips form at their disjunction an upside down "U" and, seen from the side, hang moderately. The commisure is rightly evident and it always represents the lowest point of the lower side profile of the muzzle. The pigmentation is black.

Jaws -
Very wide, strong and thick, with a very slight shortening of the upper jaw. The branches of the lower jaw are very strong and, seen from the side, are quite curved, the body of the lower jaw, well accentuated forward, points out well the marked chin.

Cheeks -
The masseter region is full and evident, but not hypertrophic.

Teeth -
White, big, complete in growth and number. The lower jaw incisors pass only slightly (1/4 inch max) their correspondent ones on the upper arch, so the bite is slightly undershot. The canines should be slightly divergent creating a serated bite. The inscissors should be in a straight line between the canines. Scissors and level bite should be tolerated on subjects that otherwise exhibit good type-correct head to muzzle ratio, short deep wide muzzle, parallel sidelines of the muzzle. The dentition should be full.

Eyes -
Of medium size compared to the size of the dog, in a sub-frontal position, well spaced. Rima palpebrarum nearly almond shaped eyes, adherent eyelids with the borders pigmented with black, the eye must not allow the sclera  be seen. A minimal haw should be tolerated. Third eyelid strongly pigmented. The Iris as dark as possible according to the color of the coat. A brindle subject the eye color should match the darkest part of the coat. Look intelligent and alert.

Ears -
Of medium size in relation to the volume of the head and to the size of the dog; covered with short hair, of triangular shape, with rather pointed apex and thick cartilage, in a high position, much above the zygomatic arch, with a wide bottom, hanging, they stick to the cheeks without coming down to the throat. Quite outstretched and slightly protruding at the joint, they become semi-erect when the dog is watchful. They usually get amputated in an equilateral-triangular shape. Uncropped ears should not be faulted.


Top line -
Slightly arched.

Length -
3.6/10 of the height at the withers that is equal to the total length of the head.

Shape -
Of oval section, strong, very muscular, with a marked disjunction form at the nape. The perimeter, at half-length of the neck, is about 8/10 of the height at the withers. Harmoniously joined with the withers, shoulder and chest, the neck has its ideal direction at 45 from the ground and at right angle with the shoulder.

Skin -
The lower part of the neck allows for minimal dewlap or elastic skin though not reminiscent of the Neapolitan Mastiff.

Compact, strong and very muscular. Its length is 11% over the height at the withers, with allowance of 1%.

Top line -
The back region is rectilinear with a slightly lumbar convexity.

Withers -
They clearly rise on the dorsal line and over the rump level, are high, long, wide. They are lean and joint harmoniously to the neck and to the back.

Back -
It is wide, very muscular as the whole upper line of the trunk, slightly climbing from the back to the front and with a strictly rectilinear profile. Its length is approx. 32% of the height at the withers.

Loins -
The lumbar region has to be short, wide, well joined to the to the back and to the rump, very muscular, very solid and, seen from the side, slightly convex. Its length, slightly higher than its width, is equal to 20% of the height at the withers.

Croup -
It is long, wide, quite round due to the considerable growth of the muscles. The length, measured from the ridge of the hip to the ridge of the nates is equal to 32% of the height at the withers. Its average width is equal to 23% of the height at the withers, its inclination on the horizontal line, on the basis of the ilium-ischiatic line is of 28/30, on the basis of the line from the ridge of the hip to the insertion of the tail is of 15/16. Therefore the rump is slightly inclined.

Chest -
Wide, well inclined and open, with well-grown muscles. Its width, in close relation with the width of the thorax, reaches 35% of the height to the withers, the breastbone is at the same height as the tip of the shoulders. Seen from the side, the chest is outstretched forward between the fore legs and slightly convex.

Thorax -
It has to be well grown in the three dimensions with long, oblique, wide and well-hoped ribs with wide intercostal spaces. The 4 false ribs are long, oblique and open. The thorax reaches down at the elbow and its height is equal to half the height at the withers. Its width, measured at half of its height, is equal to 35% of the height at the withers and decreases slightly towards the sternum region without forming a carina. The depth (saggital diameter) is equal to 55% the height at the withers. Its perimeter is over 35% the height at the withers.

Underline and belly - The sternum region is lean, long, wide and seen from the side it outlines a semicircle with a wide radius, which caudally goes up smoothly to the abdomen. The abdomen region is neither hollowed nor relaxed and, seen from the side, rises up from the sternum edge to the groins with a smooth curve. The hollow on the side is not very marked.

Tail -
It is inserted quite high on the rump line, it's thick at the root and not too tapering at the tip, and if stretched is not too much over the hock. When not in action is low. Otherwise is horizontal or slightly higher than the back, it must never be bent to form a ring or in a vertical position. It gets amputated at the 4th vertebrae.


FOREQUARTERS - Perpendicular, seen from the front or in profile. The height of the limbs at the elbows is equal to 50% of the height at the withers. Well proportioned to the size of the dog. Strong and powerful.

Shoulder -
Long, oblique, strong, equipped with long, powerful and well-divided muscles, is adherent to the thorax but free in the movements. Its length, from the top of the withers to the ridge of the shoulder, is equal to 30% of the height at the withers and its inclination on the horizontal line is between 48/50. In relation to the median plane of the body the ridges of the shoulder blades are slightly swerved.

Arm -
It is slightly longer than the shoulder, strong, with very well grown bones and muscles, well joined to the trunk in its top 2/3, measured from the ridge of the shoulder to the tip of the elbow, it has a length equal to 31/32% of the height at the withers and an inclination with the horizontal line of approx 58/60. Its longitudinal direction is parallel to the median plane of the body. The angle between the shoulder blades and the humerus is between 106 and 110.

Elbows -
The elbows, long and protruding, adherent but not too close to the ribcage, covered with lean skin, must be like the humeri, on a strictly parallel plane to the sagittal plane of the trunk. The tip of the elbow (olecranon epiphysis) is located on the vertical line lowered from the caudal (or back) angle of the shoulder blade to the ground.

Forearm -
It is perfectly vertical, oval section, with several muscles, in particular in the top-third, with a very strong and compact bone structure. Its length, from the tip of the elbow to the one of the arm is equal to 32/33% of the height at the withers. Its perimeter, measured straight underneath the elbow, is equal to 39% of the height at the withers; the carpus-cubital groove is quite marked.

Carpal joint -
Seen from the front, it follows the straight vertical line of the forearm; it is lean, wide, mobile, thick. Its perimeter reaches 26% of height at the withers, at its top margin the pisiform bone is strongly projected backwards.

Pastern -
It is quite smaller than the forearm, is very strong, lean, slightly flexed (it forms with the ground an angle of approx. 72-73). Its length must not be over one sixth of the height of the forelimb at the elbow. Seen from the front, it follows the perpendicular line of the forearm and of the carpus.

Forefeet -
They have a round shape, with very arcuated gathered toes (cat's foot), lean and hard soles. The nails are strong, curved and pigmented; there is a good pigmentation also in the plantar and digital pads.

Perpendicular, seen from the front or in profile. Well proportioned to the size of the dog, strong and powerful.

Thigh -
It is long and wide, with prominent muscles. Therefore, the nate ridge is well marked. Its length is over 33% of the height at the withers and the width is never lower than 25% of such height. The thigh-bone axis, quite oblique from the top to the bottom and from the back to the front, has an inclination of 70 on the horizontal line and forms with the coxal axis an angle which is slightly more than right (coxo-femural angle).

Second thigh -
It is long, lean, with a strong bone and muscle structure. Has a well-marked muscular groove. Its length is equal to 32% of the height at the withers. Its inclination from the top to the bottom and from the front to the back is of approx. 50 on the horizontal line.

Hock joint -
It is wide, thick, and clean with a well-marked bone. The protruding hock ridge shows clearly a continuation of the leg groove. The distance from the ridge of the hock to the sole of the foot (to the ground) should not be over 26% of the height at the withers. Its direction, in relation to the median plane of the body is parallel. The tibio-metatarsal angle is of approx. 130.

Hock (Metatarsus) -
Is very thick, lean, rather short, cylindrical, and is always perpendicular to the ground, seen from the side and from the back, its length is equal to approx. 15% of the height at the withers (tarsus and foot excluded). Its internal side has to present itself without spur.

Hind feet -
They have a slightly more oval shape than the fore ones and less arched toes.

They move in long steps, stretched trot, some steps of gallop, but with an inclination to stretched trot. The movement should be free flowing and powerful, yet effortless. The front legs should reach with long strides. The rear should thrust with great drive and extension. When viewed from the front, the legs should move parallel to each other and cover a great deal of ground with each step. When viewed from the side, the top line should remain on a level plane with a minimum roll or bounce and should converge as to single track. The dog should move with a great deal of ease and confidence.

It is, rather thick, has limited subcutaneous connective tissue and therefore, is adherent everywhere to the layers underneath. The head must not have wrinkles. The pigment of the mucous membranes is black. The pigment of the soles and the nails must be dark.

Hair- Short hair but not smooth, with vitreous texture, shiny, adherent, stiff, very dense, with a light layer that becomes thicker in winter (but never crops up on the covering hair). Its average length is approx. " to 1"inch. On the withers, the rump, the back margin of the thighs and on the tail it reaches approx. 3 cm without creating fringes. The hair on the muzzle is very short, smooth, and adherent and is not more than 3/8".

Color -
Black, blue, chestnut brindle, fawn, red and or brindling of any of these colors. With fawn and red subjects there is a black or gray mask on the muzzle only and should not go beyond the eye line. A small white patch on the chest and feet tips is accepted.


Height at the withers -
For males from 24 to 27 inches. For females from 23 to 26 inches.

Weight -
For males from 107 to 132 lbs. For females 90 to 115 lbs. There is a 5% plus or minus tolerance on good subjects.

FAULTS - Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and diffusion.



Accentuated parallelism of the axes of the skull and the muzzle.
Very marked converging axes of the skull and the muzzle.
Converging sidelines of the muzzle.
Pronounced and disturbing undershot or overshot mouth.

Partial depigmentation.

Forming a ring or in a vertical position.

Oversize or undersize.

Continued amble.



Diverging axes of the skull and the muzzle.
Overshot mouth.
Nose bridge resolutely hollow or ram-like.

Total depigmentation.

Partial and bilateral palpebral depigmentation.
Bilateral strabismus.

Sexual organs

Obvious incomplete growth of one or both testicles.


Semi-long, smooth, and fringed.

All colors not prescribed, white patches too wide. (A few hairs do not qualify as a patch)
Blue/tan and black/tan color pattern (Rottweiler markings)

Note - Males should have two apparent normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
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