Dogo Argentino

AKC Miscellaneous Class


Photo copyright © Cook PhoDOGraphy. All rights reserved.

Photo copyright © Cook PhoDOGraphy. All rights reserved.

The Dogo Argentino was developed in Argentina by Dr. Antonio Nores Martinez in the 1920s. He wanted a dog who was a good hunter and guardian, but could also be trusted with the family. He started with a now extinct mastiff-type breed called the Dog of Cordoba. He added Great Dane, Boxer, Spanish Mastiff, Bulldog, Bull Terrier, Great Pyrenees, Pointer, Irish Wolfhound, and Dogue de Bordeaux. The resulting breed not only met Martinez’s original expectations as a big game hunter and family guardian, but also has been successful as a guide dog and in military and police work. Upon entering the AKC Miscellaneous class in 2011, the breed’s name was changed from Argentine Dogo back to Dogo Argentino.


The Dogo Argentino is a muscular, yet graceful dog of Mastiff stock with very strong jaws, and a short, sleek white coat. It is slightly longer than tall, and is not exaggerated in any way. The head is convex in the front, with a moderate stop. The muzzle should be about the same length as the skull. The teeth should meet in a scissors bite, never undershot or overshot. The eyes should either be dark brown or dark hazel with an alert, intelligent, and intense expression. They must be of the same color, and never light blue. The nose should be black—never unpigmented. The chest is wide and deep, giving an impression of strength. The skin on the neck is loose to protect the dog during the hunt. The long tail reaches to the hock. It is never carried over the back, though the dog might swing it and carry it high when excited. The short white coat has no undercoat.

Key Facts

  • Height:  24 to 27 in. (male); 23 1/2 to 26 in. (female)
  • Size:  Large
  • Weight:  80 to 100 lbs.
  • Availability:  Very difficult to find
  • Talents:  Hunting, tracking, watchdog, guarding, police work, narcotics detection, military work, competitive obedience, and Schutzhund


The single white coat is very easy to care for and does not have a doggy odor. Be sure to bring the Dogo inside when temperatures drop below freezing. Pay special attention to the nails, as they tend to grow very quickly and therefore need frequent clipping.


An excellent guardian of the home. Loyal to the family. Playful and intelligent. Good with children. Loves to kiss and cuddle with those the family accepts. This is a highly intelligent, powerful dog that needs a firm and consistent, but loving, hand. Adult Dogos can be aggressive with other dogs; however, the Dogo does not usually provoke the confrontation. Care must be taken to not allow such confrontations. The Dogo is not a breed for everyone. All dogs are individuals; some are more dominant or possess a stronger prey drive than others. Breeders should work with prospective owners to match the dog with the household.


  • Children:  Good with children, but should be supervised
  • Friendliness:  Moderately protective
  • Trainability:  Easy to train
  • Independence:  Moderately dependent on people
  • Dominance:  Very high
  • Other Pets:  Good with other pets if raised with them from puppyhood
  • Combativeness:  Tends to be fairly dog-aggressive
  • Noise:  Average bark
  • Indoors:  Moderately active indoors
  • Owner:  Not recommended for novice owners


  • Grooming:  A little grooming needed
  • Trimming and Stripping:  No trimming or stripping needed
  • Coat:  Short coat
  • Shedding:  Average shedder
  • Docking:  The ears are customarily cropped
  • Exercise:  Moderate exercise needed
  • Jogging:  A good jogging companion
  • Apartments:  Will be OK in an apartment if sufficiently exercised
  • Outdoor Space:  Best with at least an average-size yard
  • Climate:  Does well in most climates
  • Longevity:  Average (10 to 12 years)

Useful Links

AKC® Dogo Argentino Breed Standard

Dogo Argentino Breed Club

Search for a Breeder

Rescue Organizations

Books about the Dogo Argentino

Dogo Argentino Gifts