Confusions regarding Corsos!

Discussion in 'Cane Corso' started by southshore, Feb 19, 2018.

  1. southshore

    southshore Member

    Hi everyone! Am new to this forum. Reason I joined was that I wanted to clarify some confusions:

    1. Is it true that the breed has a lot of variation still within the breed and there no clear definition of the perfect Corso should be like?

    2. If this is true, what should one go by?

    3. What do Mike Sottile and Salahdin Salam keep complaining about the Corso not going the right direction and the current Corso not being the true type?

    4. What is the difference between the American and European Corsos?

    5. What is the difference between the Corsos in different countries in Europe, say for example Italy and Serbia?
     
  2. marke

    marke Well-Known Member

    I knew Mike's father , I got a couple neos from him in the late 1970's , I can tell you his dad was a dog guy , he got a lot of generations of dogmen behind him ....... don't know who the other guy is , but i'm sure Mike's opinion , whether you agree with him or not , is one to be taken seriously .......
     
    southshore likes this.
  3. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    #1 &2 . The breed does vary by lines and breeders. You have to determine what you want in a dog and find a breeder that can show you examples of the dogs they produce. See if they are what you are looking for. There really is no such thing as perfect. People use "perfect" to market or sell their dogs. You want a dog that best fits your desire, needs and ability as an owner.
    First start off by familiarizing yourself with the breed standards. These are set and made by the different breed registries. Check the ICCF and the AKC for detailed specific info on what they feel the modern Cane Corso should be. Keep in mind a lot of breeders dont breed with the exact standard in mind. Some like bigger dogs. Some like smaller more agile dogs. Some like more aggressive dogs. Some like more pet like dogs. Buy one based off your experience level and the breeder you feel is being honest NOT THE SALESMAN. You need to ask yourself many questions. Like Are you going to show the dog? If so, what registry or club do you want to do that with? Do you want to work your dog? Hunting? Personal Protection work? Do you want a serious guard dog? Do you want a super social dog? Or do just want a dog as a companion/ pet? Or a combination of some/ all of these things.

    #3 & #4. So there were 2 seperate processes that were going on that helped the Cane Corso become popular again in today's world. There was an Italian Recovery Process where they claimed to find the only good existing Corsos left in Italy. Then with a team of scientists, vets, breeders and other supposed dog people of notoriety they started a breeding program and developed an Italian breed standard. They credit this as saving the Cane Corso from extinction.

    Supposedly seperate from the Italian recovery process a Neo breeder from America named Mike Sottile went on vacaton to Sicily. There he found what were also referred to as working Cane Corsos that were rustic farm dogs. He was the first person to import these Cane Corsos to America. They became super popular. Eventually they started their own Registry the ICCF. Created their own breed standards and clubs. There were differences between the dogs and standards for both of these processes.
    Both the American Imported dogs and the Italian dogs began to grow in popularity. Both America and Italy began exporting and selling the dogs all over the world. Most people had no idea that there was a difference between the dogs and or processes. They figured a Cane Corso was a Cane Corso. Especially when both had legit breed registries and standards.

    The controversy lies in a couple of things. The pro Italian recovery process people claim that Sottile and many other breeders in America added Neapolitan Mastiff into the dogs that were imported. There are some red flags for these claims. Such as he did breed Neos. The muzzles on the imported dogs were a lot longer than the ones Sottile lines became to be know for. They also had a ton of more Neo like features than the dogs in his videos of his trip to Sicily. They also shared the same health issues as Neos too. The biggest knock on this is I think Sottile Jr and Mr. Salem are claiming that the Neo and Cane Corso were always the same breed. So they could cross them if they wanted to. Even though the Neo and Corso come from the same dog today they are totally different.

    The American Corso people have in turn accused the Italian recovery process and many breeders of adding in a heavy influence of Boxers into their programs. Red flags for this are boxer like health problems have shown up heavy in some of these lines. Size & structure different from that of a mastiff. The lack of genetic diversity needed to start a breeding program if their were only a few Corsos left may be to balme for this. The biggest red flag would be the super short nosed muzzles and eyes that do resemble that of a boxer or a big pug.

    Lastly, dont believe everything you read or hear on the internet. Or from any breeders who are trying hard to sell you a dog by slandering others. Or any bias source of info. There is something wrong or fishy about a person who posts a ton of Youtube videos criticizing other's Cane Corsos. Yet they do not post pictures or vids of their kennel or their current dogs.

    Hope this helps some. Just the cliff notes on a really complicated situation that most breeders arent even fully aware of.
     
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  4. BlackShadowCaneCorso

    BlackShadowCaneCorso Super Moderator Staff Member

    Mike JR is NOT his father, and their group is causing a lot of mis-information that will have our breeding in more chaos, worse than it already is.

    Justin B answered the rest of the questions as well as touched on the speculation and issues we continue to face in our breed that likely aren't going to go away any time soon.
     
    southshore likes this.
  5. marke

    marke Well-Known Member

    Maybe he’s not , but I do know he is a guy that’s been around these dogs his whole life , pits , neos and corso that I know of , he had to pick something up , it’d be hard to come from that family and know nothing about dogs ……. I know Mike sr.’s wife bred them , I didn’t know Mike jr did , does he have a kennel name ? ……. Not exactly sure what chaos the breed has going on , or his group is causing ?…… having seen several recent recreated breeds , presa , ca de bou , Tibetans , and the corso , For a breed that is only been around 20-25yrs , imo , somebody has done an exceptional job on homogeneity within the breed , at least in any major american show ring I’ve seen …I see more variance in type in a ddb show ring , and that breed is 60-100yrs old and inbred to an unhealthy degree …. As far as adding neo , heck , it always appeared to me they were mostly neos anyway , neo mutts , comparable to American bulldogs were pitbull mutts ……… you want to see a random breed , go to an ab show , and that breed is more like 60yrs old , that is what a free for all gets you …….. I personally think the only influence Mike Sottile sr. had on the breed was the dogs he imported , even with the neos , you won’t see linebred Alaric dogs , you may see linebred dogs he brought here , but I never knew him to move from generation to generation as a breeder does …… the corso he brought in , at least to me , were all recognizable as the same type dogs , the dogs I just saw at Westminster were to my eye pretty similar in type to those dogs , a little more refined , maybe a little leggier , squarer …….. there were 4 or 5 kennels that started with the dogs/pups he brought here in the 1980’s ……
     
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  6. BlackShadowCaneCorso

    BlackShadowCaneCorso Super Moderator Staff Member

    Everyone has opinions but I would not trust anything he says, neither would most of those old name breeders that are still around. They have respect for his father but none for him, but if you aren't active in the community then it might not be something you are flooded with all the time. The state of the dogs in the show ring is an on-going debate and not one you will ever get people to agree on but I would disagree that those in the ring for the most part are consistent with each other, I see a lot more parallel planes, wet, square and either overly angulated or straight dogs with terrible fronts (always a problem in our breed for the most part) and this isn't just the dogs at westminster, it is across the breed in general, US, Canada, etc. Europe has its own problems with round, protruding eyes, retracted noses, and heavily undershot dogs.

    Nothing about this breed is easy but just because one spends a lot of time in it I don't take it to mean they know much. I know a breeder up here been in the breed for close to 20 years, 15 of those he knowingly bred dogs that carried Epilepsy in the lines. There are irresponsible breeders that have been around for 10-15 years that don't know anything about the standard and have had dogs forever that could not tell you what a corso should look like.
     
    southshore likes this.
  7. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    I wouldn't give a son credit based off the merits and accomplishments of the father. The same way I wouldn't persecute a son for the sins of the father.
    Or to use a dog analogy.... Your top foundation stud could produce a puppy in the litter that is not fit to be used for breeding or working purposes.

    The videos of the dogs Mike Sr. Found in Sicily are available online. They look a ton different from both the American and Italian standard in show rings today. Specifically the muzzle.

    The Corso was supposedly different from what we call the Reconstructed breeds. Like the Presa Canarios and others.
    The Cane Corso was credited as being a RECOVERY breed. Meaning that there were enough pure bred examples to start a breeding program to increase the # of pure specimens without adding in other breeds.
    Both the American import process and the Italian recovery process claimed this when I first got into these dogs over 20 years ago.
    I have to admit there is a lot of smoke to the Neo and Boxer claims. Its very disappointing. Many of the top breeders of yesterday have been exposed for many other terrible things. At the end of the day this is simply a buisness and an ego thing to a lot of people. This causes all the elitism, lies and secrecy you would never know about unless you owned the breed and socialized with real breeders. Typical dog politics and drama.

    Any pics of the Neos you got from Mike? I would love to see old pics of your dogs. How did you like them?
     
    southshore likes this.
  8. marke

    marke Well-Known Member

    my daughters been raised their entire lives surrounded by dogs , they're not dog people , but I assure you they know an impressive dog when they see it ........ a line that has epilepsy in it ? I can't imagine they all don't ? to breed a dog that has epilepsy is one thing , to not breed any related dogs , I would think would decimate the breed , and then to take that further , and not breed any dogs with relatives that have genetic diseases , you wouldn't be breeding any dog .......... I've seen folks claiming to try and breed out specific genetic diseases almost forever , unless there was a genetic test for it , I've never seen anyone do it , those that claimed they had were lying to you and or themselves ....... as a matter of fact I see more immune issues in dogs than at any point in my life ......... from what I've seen you just keep covering it up and hope you get lucky , I was actually told that by a really great breeder , just cover it up , not that there aren't different ways and some of them better than others to cover such stuff ........you test for what you can , and if you've "health tested" enough dogs , you realize how little it means as to the actual health of the dog , in other words , how unhealthy a heath tested dog can be ...... I recently put down a 2 yr old pup with sas , out of 4 generations of heartchecked dogs , do you now scrap the line of dogs ? it's without question genetic ? I would think most dog show folks who really knew Mike Sottile sr. well , wouldn't have liked him ? he was a really good guy , replaced a neo for me sight unseen , just gave me another pup ...... I would think most folks in show circles would have a problem with the dog hunting thing ......... i'm not just talking Westminster either , but those videos are easy to pull up , start in 2011 and look through 2018 ................. in that time frame I've been to 20 or so dog shows ...... the crown classic by me gets 20-30 corso a year , plenty of ch. and gch ....... I watch all mastiffs , I've had enough different types of dogs in my life to realize a dog is a dog ........ if Mike jr. cheats folks , well then he certainly isn't his father ...... at least not the Mike sr. I knew ..... if I can find a pic of his neos from back then i'll put it here ........... I do agree on experience , I hire folks for a living , i'd take someone with little experience and talent over someone with lots of experience who isn't any good at it ......... you can tell when they're not recreations when your job is to keep them same , versus , make them better ........

    here's one of Mikes neos annie , a sister to his nina , and my daughters ...... it's a picture of a picture , pics from those days are hard for me to come by , lots of changes ............

    [​IMG]
     
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  9. southshore

    southshore Member

    Thank you all for these great replies to my post. It's all very educational indeed and since I have only just about started to learn about the breed, I am craving any information I can get. Anyone willing to take me under their wing?? There is soo much I could learn from you guys!

    I can look at all the dog shows online and I then know what the conventional Corso type is.

    But what I am REALLY craving right now is to see pictures of the type that these guys endorse and approve to be the true Corso. Videos, pictures etc of the original type they are refering to,
    proper stacked pictures so I may understand what the fuss is about once and for all!

    In a comment in a video Salahuddin Salaam mentioned there were only a 'handful' of breeders producing the original type. Does anyone know any breeders doing that? I have messaged him as well will share what he says.

    It would be great if anyone of you could post pictures and videos of the ''original types.

    Thank you soo much for all the great information. I appreciate if very much. Thanks!
     
  10. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    I'll be happy to help if I can. But you should probably read some of these posts multiple times because they contain a ton of info you may be glossing over.
    The info posted in this thread alone far outweighs a generic comment from a youtube video. Again, be very skeptical of anonymous stuff you read online. It can be more hurtful than helpful.

    The Sicilian dogs imported to America are the dogs Mr. Salaam and his youtube followers are comstantly referring to and constantly brag about. I have always had dogs from this lineage. So if anything I hold a bias towards these dogs. They are what got me into being a Cane Corso lover.
    Google a dog named Cocomo or a dog named Bel Monte's Nero for the best looking examples of those lines and type. Those were 2 of my favorite dogs looks wise.

    Here is the other side to the coin......

    Again, keep in mind many Italians and other breeders do not consider the dogs above or their lines to be as credible as the lines developed through the recovery process in Italy. In plain terms they dont consider them as pure.
    Google a dog named Basir. This was the model for the recovery process and Italian breed standard.

    Also, keep in mind these pics have nothing to do with a dogs temperament and working ability. Which to me is far more important than deciding which of these lines are the "true Cane Corso." Especially since many lines now a days contain dogs from both lineages. Hows that for a plot twist....
     
    Nik likes this.
  11. BlackShadowCaneCorso

    BlackShadowCaneCorso Super Moderator Staff Member

    Research in this breed can be tricky as you have to deal with a lot of the ego and BS to get to the bottom of it. There were 6 dogs imported from Italy, they were nick named "the super 6" and were the stem for some of the older kennels like Bel Monte Cane Corso (no longer breeding), Castleguard CC (although not breeding these lines greatly anymore), Scandifio Cane Corso (think he still has some of the older semen that he adds back occasionally), Valentina CC or kennels (can't remember their exact name) and of course Mike Sr.

    There used to be a huge divide on if you owned American stock or imported but for the most part I think those with the more successful programs have realized the merit of cross the best from the imports to the best of the America. There will always be those from either side of the pond that screams one is better than the other but both have their good and bad points and both have good and bad breeders.

    FB groups can be a bit of a shit show but there is one that shows a lot of historical info as well as commonly seen dogs today and have good discussions...

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1383774055023347/

    Mr. Salaam is certainly someone that talks the loudest but there are those that have far more actual knowledge and experience that don't make videos and post them for the world.

    This is a new magazine that is being put out by a couple breeders in Europe that has some interesting articles and are trying to interview some of the older breeders that are still around. The link to their FB group is below,

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/1792299030989301/about/

    This is also a book that recently been published in English for the first time in years (there used to be a badly translated version of this book that was hard to get your hands on but this one is now easily available)

    https://www.peecho.com/checkout/148768257511713047/277247/il-cane-corso

    I love my copy, although not as pretty in the cover as I had it before it was published as a gift from a fellow breeder when Gandolfi was here in Canada a few years ago, there is some good information.

    As far as conformation, there are no perfect dogs but understanding structure will allow you to understand the functionality of the breed, which as a working dog is important.
     
  12. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    Thaks for the pic!! Love seeing old pics like this.
    I agree with some of the myth of health issues being cured or bred out to a certain extent.
    However, as a breeder you know and can see if there is a pattern of certain pairings leading to multiple cases or an increase in certain genetic health problems. A responsible breeder would at the very least not pair those dogs again. Or acknowledge the trend or increase.
    In Corsos you can see a clear trend with certain breeders and certain dogs that constantly had substantially more pups with certain health problems and issues. Cherry Eye is an example of this. So is epilepsy. There were breeders and dogs that were producing a shocking amount of litters that had these 2 very differnt issues.. Yet a lot of breeders besides the one offs or it can happen to anybody exception to the rules didnt have this problem at those large numbers. Its not about finding a cure or being able to predict the future. Unfortunately it is about trial and error. Than having the responsibility honesty, and humility to say something didnt work and I shouldnt do it again.
    Yes you are right there can be a hold out or a throwback that pops up at anytime though. Its about how regularly they happen.

    There are many breeders who do subscribe to scrapping their lines or holding dogs out of their program in general for some of those genetic issues.
    I just spoke to a high level breeder that was staring over and importing all new dogs from Italy.

    Others don't and are honest with why they make exceptions. I can appreciate this to a certain extent.

    Others are hypocrits and want to make rules for other breeders but give themselves and their peer group passes on certain things their dogs have.

    Health issues happen with all breeders. Its about
    -how many health issues they have compared to the # of pups they produce.
    -What they tell you up front as far as health guarantee or contract.
    -How the breeder handles the situation.
     
  13. marke

    marke Well-Known Member

    personally I don't believe a responsible breeder makes a practice of repeating breedings no matter how they turn out ...... producing dogs is not a public service , it's actually a public disservice , certainly a disservice to the dogs ...... folks repeat breedings almost exclusively to sell puppies ........... if you make a breeding and it works you move on from there , breeding dogs done right is a painfully slow enough process without doing something twice ...... scrapping your line and starting again with someone elses is a bit naïve ...If you got 8 generations , 26 yrs , and hundreds of thousands of dollars invested , you don't start again with some other dudes dogs , you retire ........ to have to scrap "your line", you would have had to have gotten it to a point where it's complete garbage , and if that's the case you should just find another hobby ........ I don't think breeding dogs should be trial and error .... should be an educated bet with the odds in your favor , not that stuff doesn't go wrong , if you know the dogs your breeding surprises are few and far between , and again , if your getting surprised on a regular basis , you should take up another hobby ..........
     
  14. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    You consider Mike Sottile Sr. a respectable breeder right?
    Do you currently breed dogs?
    What kind do you have now?
     
  15. marke

    marke Well-Known Member

    I consider mike sottile a respectable person , not really my idea of a dog breeder , knew an impressive dog , he kinda just bought and sold impressive dogs , stuck them together to sell pups........... i'd say he knew how it works from the pits ...............

    I maybe done breeding , possibly I got one more left ...........

    here's my foundation bitch , i'd love to know how many ddb breeders would linebreed on her , lmao ............

    [​IMG]

    here's her pup I went with

    [​IMG]

    here's her pup I went with

    [​IMG]

    here's her pup I went with

    [​IMG]

    here's her pup I went with

    [​IMG]

    here's her pup I went with

    [​IMG]

    and here's her pup i'll go with if I do it again

    [​IMG]
     
  16. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    Nice pics. Not too familiar with DDBs. Have only handled 2.
    Interesting philosophy you have though.
     
  17. BlackShadowCaneCorso

    BlackShadowCaneCorso Super Moderator Staff Member

    I guess it depends on what one classifies as impressive. I believe a correct corso (structurally and temperament wise) that is health is impressive and seriously lacking in a lot of cases these days. I am sure there are many dogs that don't hit a show ring as they are "not to standard" but are bred to correct things which they are strong for, it is breeding live animals... there is no perfect way to do anything. However, we are dealing with far more people breeding who don't even know what a correct corso should be let alone what line breeding and why it works in some cases and can be a good tool. It is far too much about selling dogs that with their ears cropped look tough to anyone who has the $$.
     
    glen likes this.
  18. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    What are your thoughts on how and who should determine the correct standard for a breed?
    When I look at the foundation stock of both Basir and Cocomo i dont see any dogs that fit these modern Confimation standards on both sides. Very interesting.
     
    southshore likes this.
  19. BlackShadowCaneCorso

    BlackShadowCaneCorso Super Moderator Staff Member

    you will always have arguments on who's got the more correct standard in the breed but I honestly prefer Morsiani but it isn't used in any country to the best of my knowledge anymore. There will always be things that can be picked apart in any standard, and with people and today society being more about making $$ if they are in power and can change the standard you will see that start to reflect in the dogs that can have disastrous effects long term.

    Ex: I understand the preference for lightly undershot in the Italian standards as it affects the structure of the muzzle with that preferred "U" shape but if they are an excessive they only fault those (and we are seeing far too many of these) when they should be a DQ and that has gotten us into some issues with type.

    The US doesn't have a limit on weight,it is proportionate to height and while I don't like to focus on the numbers on a scale it is still supposed to be a coursing mastiff so when I see dogs that are 160+ that concerns me as well.

    Our Canadian Standard has weight limits in that would rule out pretty much most of the dogs that are shown/bred here (correct otherwise or not) but they are balanced (some at least ;) ) which to me is more important.

    I don't know if we can find dogs that look like the originals, and perhaps if the recovery efforts were around today trying to pick examples to best exemplify what they knew as "corso" in the past it would be different dogs.

    I honestly can't say what they would do or think of the dogs that we see now and I honestly don't know what the future holds if we only focus on the dogs that have a CH in front of their name, but to be honest it scares me as it seems like before long we won't have a breed any longer.
     
  20. Justin B.

    Justin B. Well-Known Member

    Would you agree that the Cane Corso was first and foremost a Coursing Mastiff that was a working farm and catch dog????
     

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