The Canary Dog or Presa Canario ancestry probably includes the now extinct naive and indigenous Bardino Majero, crossed with imported English Mastiffs. It was developed in the Canary Islands in the 1800’s specifically for dog fighting.
At one time dog fighting was a common and popular entertainment in most European countries, and breeds were developed specially for their tenacity and endurance. In some countries, such as Ireland, fights were staged in open fields, but more often, as was the case in the Canary Islands, fighting took place in rings or pits.
With the outlawing of dog-fighting on the island and the introduction of foreign dogs such as the German Shepherd Dog, by the 1960s the breed was nearly extinct. It was revived by the American veterinarian Dr. Carl Semencic.
Fawn or brindle of any shade; white markings are accepted. The face must have a black or dark brown mask that does not extend over the eyes, with or without a white blaze or patch on the head.
The short, rough coat is easy to groom. Brush with a firm bristle brush and wipe over with a piece of toweling or chamois for a gleaming finish. Bathe or dry shampoo when necessary. This breed is an average shedder.
As a large breed, the Presa Canario can be susceptible to hip dysplasia. Other reported health problems include patellar luxation and patellar evulsions, skin cysts, epilepsy, osteochondrodysplasias, demodectic mange andcryptorchidism.
The Canary Dog requires a very dominant, experienced owner who understands the alpha nature in canines. The Canary Dog must know that his master is in control of him. No member of the family can be uncomfortable around the dog. Presa Canario dogs make outstanding guard dogs.
Their appearance is a deterrent not to mention their ability to confront any intruder. In the wrong hands this dog can be dangerous, but with the right owner it can make a nice, devoted companion. This is not a breed for first time dog owners. It is a very aggressive natured dog.
Needs outdoor living. The Canary Dog requires large amounts of exercise.