The Canary Mastiff, or Perro de Presa Canario, is believed to have been originally bred as a large Spanish working dog to control livestock and kill wild dogs that would try and attack cattle.

Due to it’s size and history in dog fighting, The Presa is a breed which requires much responsibility from the owner and demands early obedience training and socialization with humans and other dogs and animals alike in it’s formative years.

It is always advisable to only buy a pedigree Presa Canario, as it is a complex and powerful dog that can be ruined by crossbreeding. Due to being a rare type of dog, this often means that they’re a target for unscrupulous sellers to make larger profits through deceit, neglect and greed. Which in turn affects the health and nature of the dog that can cause problems at later stages of it’s life.

Below is a list of key checks that you should make before finalizing your choice of a new Presa Canario puppy.

         Health testing

You should always receive a copy of the vaccinations certificate, which again can be verified at source, so you know full the medical background as it is normal procedure for this to be carried out before they’re two months old, which is the earliest age you should be thinking of taking it away from it’s mother.

You should also view at least one of the parent dogs to gain an insight into their potential appearance and constituent nature.  Taking this one step further you should also ask about proof of health screenings on the parents which is a procedure that all careful breeders undertake to ensure that they maintain a high quality in the lineage.

Hips x-ray

A common problem facing the Presa Canario is generally related to orthopedics, namely the muscles and joints along the spine and so x-rays are often used to check bone alignment and positioning within breeding lines.  There are certificates (OFA) issued by the orthopedic foundation for animals which genetically test for hips, elbows, thyroids and eye quality which will always be present for both parents of a dog by any reputable breeder and this is the only genuine way to gauge a true picture of the dogs vitality.

Finding reputable breeders

As mentioned above, there unfortunately are some breeders in this world who are only interested in the financial side of these beautiful animals and so finding a trustworthy seller should always be your first step. Not all breeders are the same and have different

  • Make an on-site visit to check their living conditions and how they currently interact with their present family, humans and dogs alike
  • Find distinguished breeders through word-of-mouth or from entrants at prestigious dog shows
  • If the breeder claims membership of any particular kennel club or breeders association, ask the club in question for an account of them or authentication as it is not uncommon for fake documents to be used
  • Breeders should always be very knowledgeable towards the needs, strengths and weaknesses of animals that they keep and they should be open and honest in passing this to you if they truly possess concern of an animals well-being
  • If they have a vested interest, they will also ask plenty of questions to you as they establish whether you are a suitable owner.
  • Ask the neighbors for a character reference of the breeders if you have any doubts
  • Are you using a breeder who is housing their dogs in kennels?
  • You should be getting puppy registration papers through the UKC or FCI immediately upon the purchase of a puppy. You are purchasing a pure breed Presa Canario, so you are entitled them at puppy pickup.
  • Shot records should be provided along with the Presa Canario’s shots up to date. Along with telling you the follow up shot schedule
  • Overall gut feeling. If everything above checks out okay then you should be happy with the Presa Canario Breeder you are looking to select.