1. Socialize Your Pup
Your Corso will instinctively guard you and your family against any threats, so she will not need personal protection training. She will however need to be socialized early to ensure she can differentiate a threat from a non threat. Make sure your pup is current on her shots and have your vet clear her for interaction with other dogs before socializing her. Once it is safe to bring your puppy out into the world, do it! The more experiences and interactions your Cane Corso has at an early age, the better adjusted she will be as an adult dog. When your Mastiff is fully grown, you want her to know the difference between a child running down the street, and an attacker. She may naturally be able to tell the difference, but without proper socialization, she also may not. A risk not worth taking.
2. Off the Bed
If you wish to let your Cane Corso sleep in the bedroom, I encourage it, but don’t let her sleep in the bed. In the wild, dogs and wolves have a pecking order. The pack leader sleeps above the rest of the pack. By letting your Corso sleep on the same level as you, she will assume that she is on the same level as you in your pack. At a very young age, crate your Corso and keep the crate by your bed. This will allow your Cane Corso to feel safe and secure while she sleeps, and will also reinforce her place in your family. As the little warrior grows older and you transition her from crate to home, allow her to sleep on the floor in your room, on a dog bed perhaps. She’ll love sleeping with you, keeping you safe; being with her family even when she sleeps. This is her purpose and will make her immensely happy. Just don’t make the mistake of confusing her. Letting her sleep at the same level as the pack leader will confuse her.
3. Raise the Bowl
I invested $20 in a raised food and water bowl for Bella, my beautiful blue Corso. Cane Corsos are particularly susceptible to bloat, a very dangerous stomach condition, that is believe to be caused by eating too fast. The chances of your Cane Corso coming down with Bloat can be significantly reduced by elevating you dog’s food an water bowl. A $20 investment that can save your best friends life.
4. Wait Before Eating
Keeping in line with bloat prevention, I recommend not feeding your Cane Corso immediately after play time or after a walk. Let your dog’s heart rate and energy level come down a bit before feeding her. That mammoth beast that you share your home with is an apex predator, and make no mistake it will tear a bowl of food to shreds every time if you allow it. The best thing for your Cane Corso is to eat in as calm of a manner as possible. It is better for digestion, it can be a great training tool (I’ll talk about that in a later article) and most importantly it is safer for your furry friend.
5. Love Her
This is so obvious that it should go without saying. If you’re reading a website entitled “Cane Corso Love” then this probably doesn’t apply to you, but I’m going to say it anyway. Many people look at the Cane Corso and see a large, intimidating dog. They think it would be so cool to have a dog like that, so they can get a spiked collar and chain link leash and walk it up and down the street and be a “big man.” I agree, Cane Corsos are impressive looking. When I see an Italian Mastiff, I see one of the most powerful, graceful and formidable animals walking. It is literally the most powerful and dangerous animal that most people could ever get that close to and live to tell about it. But when I look into the eyes of a Cane Corso I also see a furry little person that loves its family more than it would ever love itself. You may just be one person in great big world, but to your Corso you are the world.
In Philadelphia more Cane Corsos were abandoned last year than in all other US metropolitan areas combined. In Philadelphia, dog fighting is a horrible corruption running rampant. People buy this dog to fight because it is the strongest, most powerful dog in existence. When these subhuman, dog abusers realize that Cane Corsos aren’t vicious unless protecting the ones they love, they dump them in the streets and move one with their worthless lives. If you live in the Delaware Valley region, and want to rescue a Cane Corso, visit http www.bigpawsbigheartsrescue.com, an amazing group making a real difference in Philadelphia today. These beautiful dogs need a forever home that they can protect, and a family that they can love.