Dogo Argentino: The Majestic Protector and Loyal Companion

The Dogo Argentino or the Argentine Dogo, a breed with a striking white coat, originates from Argentina where it was originally bred for big-game hunting, including wild boar. It’s a large dog that stands out not just for its powerful physique but for its fearless and loyal nature. Dogo Argentinos are known for their muscular build and have a reputation for being both brave and affectionate. Bred to protect their human families and property, these dogs often form strong bonds with their owners and can be eager to please.

Owning a Dogo Argentino means having a vigilant companion that requires consistent training and ample socialization. Due to their intelligence and energy levels, they need a considerable amount of exercise to keep them happy and well-behaved. But before you look for Dogo Argentino puppies for sale, it is vital to do your research. So we consulted the best Dogo Argentino experts sources for a complete dog breed information overview.

So, What Is A Dogo Argentino? Breed Overview

The Dogo Argentino is a large, white, muscular dog breed known for its hunting prowess, particularly with big game like wild boar. Developed in Argentina in the early 20th century, this breed combines the bravado of fighting dogs with the size and strength needed for its hunting tasks.

Key Takeaways

  • The Dogo Argentino is a powerful and loyal breed, originally from Argentina, known for its capability in hunting and strong bond with owners.
  • These dogs are energetic and intelligent, requiring regular exercise, training, and socialization to thrive.
  • Regular veterinary check-ups are crucial to maintaining their health, including care for their distinctive white coat.

Dogo Argentino History and Origin

The Dogo Argentino, a breed with a storied past, emerges from Argentina’s Cordoba region, conceptualized by Dr. Antonio Nores Martinez. Let’s dive into the rich tapestry of this breed’s ancestry and its journey to becoming the dog we know today.

Ancestral Breeds: What breeds make a Dogo Argentino dog

Originating from the Old Fighting Dog of Cordoba, Antonio Nores Martinez meticulously developed the Dogo Argentino. The breed owes its existence to an array of strong breeds including the Bulldog, Bull Terrier, Boxer, Great Dane, Pyrenean Mastiff, and Irish Wolfhound. These dogs were selected for their power and agility, key traits essential for hunting.

Historical Significance

Antonio Nores Martinez had a vision to create a dog that excelled in big-game hunting. Your Dogo Argentino’s ancestors were adept at tracking and taking down wild boars and pumas across Argentina’s diverse landscapes. By 1947, the breed was established, and its standard was showcased at the Hunter’s Club in Buenos Aires.

The Breed Today

Your Dogo Argentino stands as a testament to Dr. Martinez’s original vision — strong and versatile. They’re not only treasured for their hunting abilities but also valued as loyal companions. Their reputation for bravery and athleticism continues, maintaining their place at the forefront of both hunting packs and family life.

Kennel Club Recognition

In 1964, the breed received official recognition from Federación Cinologica Argentina (FCA) and Sociedad Rural Argentina. It was Dr. Agustín Nores Martínez, brother to the breed’s founder, who championed the Dogo Argentino to gain international recognition. Thanks to his efforts, in 1973, the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) accepted the breed, cementing its status globally.

Physical Characteristics

Dogo Argentino is a breed known for its muscular and strong physique, combining athletic ability and a striking white coat.

Size and Build

Your Dogo Argentino is likely to be quite large and robust. They generally exhibit a mesomorphic body type which means they’re well-muscled, with a build that’s both powerful and agile. These dogs look as energetic as they feel, and their strength is plainly visible in their sturdy frame.

Size Measurements

Height (withers)24–27 inches61–68.5 cm
Weight88–100 lbs40–45 kg
Body LengthExceeds height at withers by 10% max


Speaking of the head, Dogo Argentinos have a strong and powerful appearance with converging cranio-facial axes. The skull, compact and convex in profile, demonstrates the dog’s impressive muscularity. Eyes are medium, almond-shaped with a firm expression, and displaying a lively intelligence that reflects their keen awareness. Ear-wise, if they’re cropped, they stand erect in a triangular shape; otherwise, they’re of medium length, flat, and rounded at the tip.

White Coat and Markings

Your Dogo’s coat is short, smooth, and white, often with a distinctive single dark spot on the skull, ear, or around one eye, though an all-white coat is even more desired. The hair coat reflects the breed’s capability to adapt to various climates with a thickness that changes accordingly. Shedding is natural to Dogos as it is with many breeds, which may be a consideration if you are concerned about shedding in Bulldogs, for example.

Temperament and Personality

Dogo Argentinos are known for their sharp intelligence and versatility in various roles, from active sports to roles in personal safety. They have a deep affection for family, especially children, and while they can socialize well within their pack, they have strong instincts that can lead to aggression towards unknown animals.

General Disposition

These dogs display a confident and protective nature, making them excellent guard dogs. Their intelligence means they can be a joy to train, responding well to firm and consistent obedience training. They thrive in a family environment and show a protective streak towards their loved ones.

Interaction with Children and Other Pets

Dogo Argentinos often show a loving temperament towards children and are generally good with other dogs in the household, particularly when socialization starts early. However, due to their inherent prey drive, unfamiliar animals can trigger an aggressive response. It’s essential to understand the dynamics of dogs’ relationships with other animals to help mitigate potential issues.

Common Behavioral Traits

These dogs are highly trainable, but due to their strong personalities, they need an owner who understands how to maintain the alpha position. Positive reinforcement and structured training sessions will help harness their natural intelligence and prey drive. Potential owners should consider how to integrate socialization and training to manage their natural instincts around strangers. Insights on fostering positive relationships between dogs can be especially helpful if you’re introducing a Dogo Argentino into a home with existing pets, as this can influence their behavior towards other animals in the house.

Health and Lifespan

When considering the Dogo Argentino breed, understanding their health and expected lifespan is crucial. This robust breed has specific wellness needs and is predisposed to certain health conditions.

Average Lifespan

The Dogo Argentino typically enjoys a lifespan of 10 to 12 years. However, this can vary based on genetics, the level of care they receive, and their overall health throughout their life.

Common Health Issues

Health Problems

Dogo Argentinos are prone to a few hereditary health issues. One of the significant concerns is hip dysplasia, a malformation of the hip joint that can lead to arthritis and pain. Deafness is another genetic condition seen within this breed, often present from birth. Studies indicate that deafness in Dogo Argentinos can be associated with their eye and coat color.

Skin Conditions

Dry and flaky skin is a common ailment that can affect Dogo Argentinos. This condition requires attention to prevent discomfort and potential infections. To support their skin health, consider using appropriate grooming techniques.


Dogo Argentinos have a short coat which reduces grooming demands. Even though they are not excessive shedders, regular brushing helps manage shedding and promotes a healthy coat.

Preventative Care Tips

To help maintain your Dogo Argentino’s health:

Regular Vet Check-ups

Schedule annual veterinary visits to catch any health issues early.

Hip Dysplasia Awareness

Be mindful of signs of discomfort in their walk or reluctance to exercise, which may indicate hip issues.

Ear Care

Keep an eye on their hearing abilities and consult a vet if you notice any signs of deafness.


Utilize gentle grooming practices to ensure their skin remains in good condition and mitigate any dryness or flaking.

Balanced Diet and Exercise

Provide a nutritious diet and regular exercise to support overall health and manage their weight, which can impact their hip health.

Remember that preventive care can significantly impact the overall health and longevity of your Dogo Argentino.

Exercise and Housing Needs

When you own a Dogo Argentino, keeping them healthy and happy is a big part of your job. This means they need the right amount of exercise and the proper place to live. Let’s talk about what that involves.

Daily Exercise Requirements

Your Dogo Argentino is a bundle of energy and craves a lot of exercise. Plan on at least one to two hours of physical activity every day. You can mix it up with runs, long walks, or playtime in a secure area. Studies show that when these dogs get plenty of free exercising, they are generally more content and well-behaved at home.

Space Requirements

Dogo Argentinos aren’t just big; they are powerful. It’s best if you have a large, fenced yard where they can romp around safely. If they’re cooped up in a small space, they may become stressed or destructive. So think big when it comes to their outdoor space!

Suitable Living Conditions

Inside your home, your Dogo needs a comfy spot to relax after their adventures. Make sure they have a cozy bed in a quiet corner away from too much foot traffic. Even though they need space, these dogs love to be part of your “pack,” so include their living area within your common spaces. Remember, keeping your dog mentally stimulated with toys and interaction is also a big part of their well-being.

Ensuring your Dogo has enough physical exercise, ample space, and a loving home environment will make for a loyal and happy companion.

Training and Socialization

What do you need to know about this exceptionally intelligent breed?


Dogo Argentino is intelligent and learns quickly. It’s key that you start training early, when your Dogo is still a puppy. They respond best to positive reinforcement techniques such as praises and treats. Be consistent, patient, and firm with commands to establish leadership and respect.

Socialization Needs

Your Dogo requires socialization to be well-adjusted. Introduce your dog to a variety of people, pets, and environments. Exposure helps prevent aggression and fear-related behaviors. Socialization can lead to a balanced temperament, making Dogos less likely to react negatively in new situations. Ensure your Dogo has good opportunities to socialize, especially in puppyhood for optimal results.

Behavioral Training Tips

  • Start training sessions as young as possible.
  • Keep sessions short and fun to maintain focus.
  • Use clear and consistent commands.
  • Socialize your Dogo in controlled environments before heading to busier spaces.
  • Reward good behavior promptly.
  • Address any signs of aggression or fear immediately with the help of a professional if needed.
  • Consider participation in structured activities like obedience classes to reinforce training and socialization.

Remember, with proper training and ample socialization, your Dogo Argentino can grow into a sociable and well-mannered companion.

Diet and Nutrition

Dietary Needs

When feeding your Dogo Argentino, you want to give them a balanced diet that supports their active lifestyle. A mix of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates is essential for their energy. Proteins are crucial for muscle development and repair, while fats provide energy and help absorb vitamins. Carbohydrates, found in vegetables and grains, offer the dietary fiber they need.

  • Proteins: Chicken, beef, fish
  • Fats: Flaxseed, fish oil
  • Carbohydrates: Brown rice, sweet potatoes

Remember, the quality of the ingredients matters just as much as the balance.

Feeding Schedule

For your Dogo Argentino, it’s a good idea to establish a regular feeding schedule. Puppies typically eat three to four times a day, while adults do well with two meals a day. This helps prevent bloating and maintains a healthy weight.

  1. Puppies (under 6 months): 3–4 meals daily
  2. Adults: 2 meals daily

It’s important to stick to your schedule as closely as possible.

Special Dietary Considerations

Some Dogo Argentinos may experience food allergies or sensitivities. An elimination diet can help identify what’s troubling your dog. Additionally, they may be at risk for conditions like deafness, which are not directly related to diet but are important to keep in mind for their overall care. For dogs with conditions like proteinuric chronic kidney disease, a diet lower in protein may be advisable to minimize proteinuria and maintain plasma albumin concentration. Always consult with your vet for specific dietary needs related to health conditions.

Grooming Needs

Don’t forget to groom your Dogo!

Grooming Frequency

Your Dogo Argentino has a smooth, white coat that’s easy to care for, but regular grooming is key to maintaining their skin and coat health. Aim to give your furry buddy a thorough brushing once a week to remove dead hair and distribute skin oils. Bathing should be done as needed — typically once every two to three months, or when your Dogo gets particularly dirty or starts to smell.

Grooming Tools

For a successful grooming session, you’ll need a few tools:

  • Brush: A rubber curry brush or a bristle brush works well for the Dogo Argentino’s short coat.
  • Nail clippers: To keep your pet’s paws healthy, trim their nails once a month or as needed, using a sturdy nail clipper.
  • Shampoo: Choose a mild dog shampoo to keep their coat shiny without irritating their skin.

Grooming Tips

  • Nail Trimming: Keep an eye on the length of your Dogo’s nails; if you hear them clicking on the floor, it’s time for a trim. Be careful not to cut too close to the quick, which can be painful and may cause bleeding.
  • Eye and Ear Care: Wipe around your dog’s eyes gently with a soft, damp cloth to prevent the buildup of crust. Check their ears regularly for dirt, wax, or signs of infection. You can clean their ears with a canine ear cleaner and a cotton ball, but never insert anything into the ear canal.
  • Bathing: When bath time rolls around, ensure the water temperature is comfortable, and thoroughly rinse off any shampoo to prevent irritation.

Remember that your Dogo Argentino’s short coat is low maintenance, but don’t overlook their grooming needs. Regular care will keep your dog feeling great and help to prevent health issues.

Cost of Ownership

So, how much does a Dogo Argentino puppy cost?

Initial Cost (Dogo Argentino Puppy Price)

When you’re thinking about getting a Dogo Argentino puppy, you’ve got to consider the initial price tag. These large and powerful dogs are not just any breed — they’re kind of special, and their price reflects that. On average, you’ll find that a Dogo Argentino will cost anywhere between $1,200 and $3,000 when bought from a reputable breeder. But why such a range? Well, it can depend on things like pedigree, breeder reputation, and whether the pup is seen as pet-quality or show-quality.

Ongoing Costs

Now, after the initial drumroll and bringing your pup home, you’ve got to keep up with the ongoing costs. Here’s a quick rundown of what you can expect:

  • Food: Dogo Argentinos are big dogs with big appetites. High-quality dog food is a must, and you’re looking at around $50 to $80 a month.
  • Healthcare: Regular check-ups, vaccinations, and the unfortunate but sometimes necessary emergency visits can add up. Set aside around $500 to $700 yearly for the basics, but remember, emergencies can increase this.
  • Training and Socialization: This is super important for these dogs. Basic training classes can cost around $100 to $200.
  • Grooming: Luckily, they’ve got low-maintenance coats, so around $30 to $50 every few months should cover it.
  • Pet insurance: It’s a smart move to insure your Dogo, just in case. On average, plans can range from $20 to $60 per month depending on the coverage.

Remember, owning a Dogo isn’t just a one-time deal with a price tag — it’s a long-term commitment and investment in your furry friend’s life and wellbeing.

Adoption and Buying Tips

Where to Adopt/Buy

When you’re looking to welcome a Dogo Argentino into your home, you have two main options: adoption or purchase. Adoption through shelters can be a responsible choice, often giving a second chance to a dog in need. Shelter workers are knowledgeable and can assist you in identifying a Dogo Argentino available for adoption. On the other hand, buying from a breeder means you’ll likely have more background info on the puppy’s lineage and health.

What to Look for in a Breeder

A reputable breeder is transparent and upholds high standards of care. They should happily show you where the dogs are raised and provide complete medical records. Ethical breeders will also want to meet you to ensure their pups are going to a good home. Look for breeders who share their experiences and prioritize canine welfare over profit.

Choosing the Right Puppy/Dog

When selecting your Dogo Argentino, consider your lifestyle and choose a dog whose energy level matches yours. Always spend time interacting with the dog or puppy to gauge their temperament and ensure a good fit. Assess the dog’s reaction to new people and environments – they should be alert and curious, not overly fearful or aggressive.

Ethical Breeding Practices

Support breeders who adhere to ethical breeding practices which include proper health testing, socialization of puppies, and a selective breeding process to avoid inherited health issues. Ethical breeders are a vital part of the Dogo Argentino community and reflect a commitment to the breed’s future.

Breed-Specific Considerations

Climate Suitability

You should know that the Dogo Argentino is well-suited for warmer climates due to its short, white coat, which helps reflect sunlight. However, because of this coat, they can be prone to sunburn, so it’s important to provide shade and sun protection.

Compatibility with Lifestyle

Dogo Argentinos require plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. They’re a high-energy breed that thrives when you include them in family activities. If you’re an active person, this breed might be a good fit. However, they need firm training and socialization due to their powerful stature and determination.

Special Needs (if any)

This breed may have specific dietary requirements or health concerns such as deafness, which is more common in white-coated dogs. As a prospective owner, you should seek out a reputable breeder to ensure you’re getting a healthy pup and be prepared for potential vet visits.

Breed-Specific Legislation

Some regions have breed-specific legislation (BSL) that may label the Dogo Argentino as a dangerous or aggressive breed. This can include restrictions or outright bans. It’s important to check your local laws before deciding on a Dogo Argentino, as owning one could be illegal. This breed is not currently recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC), but they are part of the AKC Foundation Stock Service, which is the first step towards full recognition.

50 Best Names For A Dogo Argentino

When picking out a name for your Dogo Argentino, you want something that captures their strong, brave nature but also taps into their loyal and affectionate side.

Names Inspired by Their Argentine Heritage:

  • Blanco
  • Guapo
  • Luna
  • Chico
  • Paloma
  • Rico
  • Bella

Names That Highlight Their Stature and Strength:

  • Titan
  • Hercules
  • Thor
  • Duke
  • Maximus
  • Rocky
  • Apollo

Names Reflecting Their Bold and Fearless Personality:

  • Hunter
  • Scout
  • Arrow
  • Blaze
  • Ace
  • Captain
  • Ranger

Cute and Playful Names to Suit Their Sweet Side:

  • Buddy
  • Ziggy
  • Cookie
  • Bubbles
  • Mocha
  • Fido
  • Pippin

Names for the Dog With a Regal Presence:

  • King
  • Queen
  • Prince
  • Duchess
  • Kaiser
  • Baron
  • Majesty

Cool and Unique Names for Your One-of-a-Kind Pup:

  • Maverick
  • Phoenix
  • Neo
  • Echo
  • Zephyr
  • Orion
  • Nova

Choose a name you love, that suits your dog’s personality, and feels right when you call them at the park or cozy up at home. Your Dogo Argentino is sure to be an amazing companion, no matter what name you decide on!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

In this section, you’ll find concise answers to some of the most common questions about the Dogo Argentino, helping you understand their nature, care, and legal considerations.

How does the temperament of a Dogo Argentino affect its suitability as a family dog?

Dogo Argentinos are known for their loyalty and affection towards their families. However, their strong protective instincts mean they need rigorous training and socialization to ensure they’re safe around children and other pets.

What are the characteristics that make a Dogo Argentino a good guard dog?

Their muscular build, courage, and high prey drive make Dogo Argentinos excellent guard dogs. They are alert and responsive to potential threats, always ready to protect their home and family when necessary.

What is the average lifespan of a Dogo Argentino?

The Dogo Argentino typically lives for about 10 to 12 years. Proper care, a healthy diet, and regular veterinary checks can help maximize their lifespan.

Can you own a Dogo Argentino legally in the United States?

Yes, you can legally own a Dogo Argentino in the United States, but some areas have restrictions or bans on the breed due to their powerful nature. Always check your local laws before bringing one home.

What factors contribute to the high cost of Dogo Argentino puppies?

Dogo Argentino puppies often come with a high price tag due to the breed’s rarity, the cost of responsible breeding, healthcare, and ensuring a well-maintained lineage. They are often sought after for their pure white coats and strong physique.

Which breeds were crossed to create the Dogo Argentino, and how does this affect the breed?

The Dogo Argentino was developed from breeds such as the Cordoba Fighting Dog, Great Dane, and Boxer, which contributes to its powerful structure, hunting prowess, and versatile working abilities. These characteristics demand a responsible owner who can provide proper training and socialization.

Final Thoughts

When considering adding a Dogo Argentino to your family, remember their powerful build and high energy levels. They’re social dogs that need regular interaction and vigorous exercise, or else they might get bored and turn to destructive behaviors.

  • Exercise: Daily, vigorous.
  • Social Needs: High, enjoys being with people.
  • Space: Best with a big yard.

You want to ensure they receive proper training; it’s essential with a breed known for its protective instincts. Start this training early on to help them understand how to behave around strangers and other animals.

Diet and health care are also important for the Dogo Argentino. They need a diet that supports their muscular physique and regular vet visits to keep them in top shape.

  • Diet: Nutrient-rich, enough for an active breed.
  • Health Care: Regular check-ups important.

You can look into canine hip dysplasia as it’s a condition sometimes found in the breed. Staying educated on potential breed-specific health issues means you’ll be more prepared.

Lastly, understanding and respecting the breed’s history and instincts makes integrating them into your life smoother for both you and your new furry friend. Remember, the Dogo Argentino can be a loyal, loving member of the family with the right care and training.

Tamsin de la Harpe

Tamsin de la Harpe, with a lively spirit and 15 years of experience in dog training and behavior, brings a unique flair to the team. Based in South Africa, she is deeply engaged in rehabilitating dogs, focusing on their mental and nutritional health. Tamsin's approach to dog behavior is hands-on and heartfelt, shaped by her life with her own dogs and horses. Her journey in canine behavior is ongoing, as she continues advanced studies in this field.

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