The only acceptable color for showing is white, some black marks may be present on the face.
This breed does best in a home with at least an average-sized yard, but can manage an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised.
A large, white and muscular dog, the Dogo Argentino was first bred in Argentina for big-game hunting, including wild boar and puma. Also called the Argentine Mastiff, these dogs are robust, intelligent and have quick responses, much like a serious athlete.
A female Dogo Argentino measures in at about 24 to 27 inches in height (measured from the withers), while males measure 25 to 29 inches. Its body length is just slightly longer than the height, more so in female dogs than males. Measured from point of elbow to the ground, the length of the front leg is about equal to one-half of the dog's height at the withers. Well-muscled, the Dogo Argentino has a wide, deep-set chest. Its massive head has a rounded shape from the front to the back, and there is an abundance of skin found on the neck. The Dogo Argentino's muzzle, which is about the same size as its skull, curves upwards slightly, with a slight stop. The teeth found in its strong jaw should meet in a scissors bite. Its nose is black and its dark brown, light brown or hazel eyes are set well apart (the rims of the eyes should be pink or black). Usually cropped to make them stand erect, the Dogo Argentino's triangular ears are set high.
The Dogo Argentino has muscular thighs with a short hock and dewclaws are not usually present. Its long, thick tail is naturally carried low, reaching the hock. Its thick, glossy coat is white and has no undercoat. Some Dogo Argentinos have a black spot on its head, known as the "pirate," but this marking is not accepted in all clubs (this trait is accepted by Federacion Cinologica Argentina). A dark patch around the eyes is allowed as long as it doesn't cover more than 10 percent of the head.
The Dogo Argentino's coat is short, plain and smooth to the touch. The dog's coat is white, with possible ticking, and sometimes a dark mark on the head is present. Depending on the climate, the dog's coat can vary when it comes to density and thickness. In tropical climates, the coat is thin and sparse, while in a cold climate, it is thicker and denser and may have an undercoat.
It may look tough, but the Dogo Argentino is a loyal dog that makes a great guardian your home and your family. This breed is protective of its territory and will guard it against any intruder. That being said, the Dogo is playful and good with children, and is always generous when it comes to giving kisses and cuddling. A tireless playmate, this breed is happiest when included in family activities.
Because this dog is so intelligent, the Dogo Argentino is easy to train as long as you use consistent and loving but firm authority. This powerful dog isn't for everyone - you need to be the leader of this pack. Even the more dominant Dogo Argentine can be taught to submissive towards humans and other animals. But to properly train this dog, you'll need to step up and show leadership. You'll need to be firm, confident, and consistent, and you should set the rules that the dog needs to follow. A Dogo Argentino needs limits in order to learn what it should and shouldn't be doing. One of the goals of training is to assert your role as pack leader and show your dog what its status is within the pack. All humans must be higher up in the pack order than the dog , as it's the only way the relationship can be successful.
Adult Dogo Argentinos can become aggressive with other dogs, even though the Dogo doesn't usually provoke the confrontation. This dog will usually not tolerate another dog trying to assert dominance over them, so it may not live peacefully with another strong breed. You need to step in to tell your Dogo Argentino that is not its job to bring the other in line. In most cases, this breed gets along with other dogs as long as it has been properly socialized. You will find that the Dogo Argentino is good with other pets if it is raised with them from a puppy.
Dogos are generally very healthy dogs, but there are three common Health issues. The first is Deafness - because it is a white coated dog, it is estimated that about 10 percent of Dogos are born deaf. The second is skin problems that can arise, again from the fact that it is a white-coated dog. Its skin is more sensitive than most other dogs, and is prone to skin Allergies and/or irritations. Finally, the Dogo Argentino suffers from hip dysplasia, the most common inherited orthopedic disease in large breeds. hip dysplasia is caused when the femoral head does not fit properly in the hip pocket, causing instability of the joint. Over time, this can cause pain, stiffness and immobility.
With its short coat, you should brush your Dogo Argentino every other week as it does shed. You can also groom your Dogo once a week with rubber curry comb, which helps keeps its coat and skin in great shape. Because the Dogo Argentino is prone to skin allergies and/or irritations, use a gentle shampoo that is made for white coats when bathing your dog. You won't need to bathe your Dogo often, as its coat gives off very little odor. Clip your Dogo Argentino's nails every two to three weeks, as they grow quickly. Use a good set of nail clippers and be careful of the dog's quick - if you cut it, there will be a lot of blood. As well, when you clip your Dogo's nails, it helps it walk correctly and helps displace weight properly Your Dogo Argentino's ears need to be cleaned, especially they have been cropped (cropped ears allow more dirt into the ear canal). Start by using a soft tissue, cotton balls, but never Q-tips, as they can damage the ear drum. Use an ear cleaning solution and follow the directions on the bottle. And don't forget about your dog's teeth. Brushing your dog's teeth helps prevent bad breath, gum infections and irritating teeth problems. You can use finger toothbrushes and dog toothpaste or teeth cleaning chews.
The Argentine Dogo was bred to work, so it needs to get rid of its energy is someway, even if it's a family pet. This breed needs to have regular opportunities to vent its energy and take part in interesting activities. If the Dogo doesn't get enough exercise, it will become rambunctious and bored. This usually translates into barking and destructive chewing, which can make a mess of your house and yard.
Since the Dogo Argentino is a muscular breed, a daily exercise regimen needs to be kept diligently. Jogging, running, biking, and hiking alongside its owner is an excellent form of exercise for this breed. If you keep your Dogo indoors, it will require more exercise than outdoor dogs.
Because the Dogo Argentino is a pack animal, this dog will want to become a part of your family and you have to train your Dogo that you are the pack leader. If you don't, this could lead to behavioral problem - if you don't assume the leadership role, your dog will. You need to assert yourself as the leader as early as possible through positive reinforcement, and firm but loving correction. Never use forceful punishment - you'll get much better results if your dog is happy. Like humans, Dogo Argentinos have its own distinct personalities, so some may be more willing to accept correction than others. It may not be easy to correct your dog, but it's in its best interest - if you don't, it can make life confusing if it doesn't know who is in charge.
Housetraining your Dogo Argentino should start young. Like all the training steps, housetraining goes smoother if you build a good foundation. Watch for signs such as sniffing or circling that indicate that your puppy is ready to do its business. Take your Dogo out to the same place (if possible) as soon as it wakes, about five minutes after eating and just before bed. When you puppy is young, you should take it outside every hour. After your Dogo Argentino has gone outside, be sure to praise it and leave the area, so it knows the reason for the trips outside. If your dog has an accident, only correct if you catch it in the act.
Leash training is important, as the Dogo Argentino is a big, strong breed. Start with a lightweight collar and lead for your puppy . Begin by holding the lead and letting your puppy explore. Next, get your Dogo to follow you with gentle grab-release tugs - never drag your puppy to get it to follow you. While it is important that this needs to be a pleasurable experience for both you and the dog, don't use this as a play time.
You may also want to get your Dogo Argentino into Schutzhund training. Schutzhund is a sport that combines tracking, obedience, and protection. Schutzhund training lets you control how your dog reacts to certain situations and teach you how to control your dog if it gets too excited. Not only will you have a well-balanced, well-behaved dog, but the training process will establish a close bond between you and your Dogo Argentino.