The Dogo Argentino is a large, powerful, energetic, and athletic dog that was bred to hunt wild boar and other big game. He is also called the Argentinian Mastiff and Argentine Dogo. The Dogo Argentino has a strong instinct to protect his home and his family. Despite being an excellent watchdog and fearless hunter the Dogo Argentino is a friendly and cheerful breed that is an excellent companion. He enjoys spending time with his family.
24–26,5 in (61–67 cm)
88–100 lb (40–45 kg)
The Dogo Argentino has its origins in the province of Cordoba where it was developed by Dr. Antonio Nores Martinez in 1928. He wanted to create a big powerful dog that could be used for big game hunting. He methodically crossbreeds several purebred dogs (Boxer, Great Dane, Bulldog, Bull Terrier, Dogue de Bordeaux, etc.) with the old fighting dog from Cordoba to secure all the characteristic that he wanted (height, speed, hunting instinct, etc.) and after different generations of dogs, he finally created his ideal dog. He wrote a standard for the Dogo Argentino breed in 1928. Many hunters began to use this breed for hunting purposes. The breed was recognized by the Federacion Cinologica Argentina in 1964 and was accepted by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale in 1973. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club on January 1, 2020.
Dog Breed Characteristics
The Dogo Argentino males are usually around 24–26,5 in (61–67 cm) high at the shoulders and weigh between 88–100 lb (40–45 kg). Females of the breed are slightly smaller. Individuals may also be a bit smaller or larger.
Grooming and care
The Dogo Argentino has a smooth and short white coat that doesn’t shed much. Sometimes there is a black spot on his head. His short coat is very easy to maintain. Weekly grooming and the occasional bath will keep his coat clean and healthy. Because they have fast-growing nails you should trim them regularly. His ears need to be checked weekly to avoid the wax buildup that can result in an infection.
FUN FACT: The Dogo Argentino dogs usually achieve excellent results in obedience and tracking competitions.
Is the Dogo Argentino dangerous?
No, but he has every predisposition to become aggressive. Dogo Argentino successfully combines many features: he is a long-distance runner and a sprinter, and a ruthless hunter and a pet. The owners of this breed must put a lot of effort (and sometimes nerve) into it, know a lot about the breed, its history, purpose, and behavior, but the ultimate reward is worth the effort: a friend who knows how to "get under your skin".
Dogo Argentino needs plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. This breed needs an experienced owner who can be a good leader. This breed is not recommended for a first-time dog owner. If you don’t provide them with exercise they can become bored and destructive. Besides daily walks, you need to tire out your dog with running, chasing balls, playing hide and seek, etc. Positive reinforcement-based training will be highly effective. They also enjoy swimming, weight pulling, agility sports, hiking, etc.
FUN FACT: The Dogo Argentinos are used as police and military dogs, guide and therapy dogs, rescue and search dogs.
The Dogo Argentino is very loyal and protective of his family. They go along well with children if raised together. Naturally, he doesn’t like strangers including visiting children. Children should always be supervised when they are playing with the dog because of his size and power.
Socialization is a must. Start to socialize your dog as soon as possible because they have a high prey drive and if not socialized and raised properly you could get in a lot of problems because of your dog behavior. Because of his high prey drive, he doesn’t like smaller pets, including cats and other small animals. They can learn to interact with them if raised together, but the breed is best suited for a home with no other pets. Most of Dogo Argentinos are dominant or aggressive towards other dogs of the same sex. If not raised properly they are capable of seriously injuring or killing another animal.
Training should be focused on the reward method. The Dogo Argentino is a very intelligent dog that learns very quickly. If you decide to train this breed, be very patient because you have to show him that you are a leader to obey you. The dog shouldn’t show any sign of aggression but if it does you should know how to stop it and calm the dog.
Some Dogo Argentinos can go in a different direction. If not raised and socialized properly they can become fearful of a stranger.
FUN FACT: In the United Kingdom, this breed can only be kept with a special permit, always on a leash and with a muzzle, just like Pit Bull Terriers, as it is a dangerous breed under their law. Iceland, Turkey, Italy, Romania, Australia, Norway, Israel, Ukraine, Singapore, some US states and provinces of Canada have completely banned the holding, breeding, importing and selling of the Dogo Argentino.
The Dogo Argentino is a generally healthy dog with a lifespan of 9 to 15 years. They have a few genetic problems. The main health issue is deafness. About 10% of dogs from this breed are deaf in one or both ears. This is a health issue that is found in mostly-white colored dogs (Dalmatians, Boxers, Bull Terriers). So you must find a breeder who will perform the BAER test on his puppies to evaluate hearing. Besides deafness, the Dogo Argentino is prone to hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, glaucoma and laryngeal paralysis.
FUN FACT: This breed is more sensitive to the sun because of its short hair, so sunburn is possible if the dog is constantly exposed to the sun. They are also sensitive to very cold weather.
If you choose this dog, first of all, make sure that you have sufficient time and patience to bring it up. The other main thing is to find a reputable and good breeder. Make sure that puppies are from healthy parents, and don’t hesitate to ask the breeder to show you papers of both parents. A Dogo Argentino puppy can cost up to $2000. When you add the cost of a veterinarian, dog’s initial vaccinations, high-quality food, you will end up with a large number. Never buy a puppy from a breeder that will not show you puppy parents or health certificates of the puppies. Finding a reputable Dogo Argentino breeder will ensure you get a puppy with the best genetic traits possible.
World Dog Finder team