New here: Meet Koa the Cane Corso

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by IvanTheTerrible, Aug 11, 2020.

  1. Hi all,
    Proud parents of this beautiful Cane Corso pup named Koa. She's 8 weeks old today. Here to learn from the pros about training, socializing, and how to raise a healthy and happy mastiff. Nice to meet you all!

    Attached Files:

    BattleDax, TylerDurden and glen like this.
  2. Elizabeth Balcomb

    Elizabeth Balcomb Well-Known Member

    She is gorgeous! Keep us up to date with pics.. my guy had a wedge of a face when he was this age. Just so gorgeous.. ps.. don't take her to dog parks where loads of dogs off lead can mob her . This will put her off other dogs for life, and maybe cause aggression.. this happened to us ..
    glen likes this.
  3. glen

    glen Super Moderator Staff Member

    Welcome to the forum and your pup is adorable, blink and theyve grown so enjoy the puppy stage. Agree with elizabeth re dog parks.
  4. Thanks so much, and thank you both for that advice. No dog parks in our near future - right now we're just trying to get her to walk around the block on leash, lol.

    In terms of commands, I think she's doing ok for her first week with us. She currently
    • sits on command 99% of the time
    • comes 97% of the time while we're doing training sessions
    • comes 50% of the time when called at random
    • we just started walking her on the sidewalk a few days ago. She struggles to leave our immediate property and block, so in that sense I'd fail her
    • but once she gets going, she's not bad. Likes to stop and sniff (normal) but whenever anyone walks by us or towards us, she either goes to them looking for attention wagging her nubby tail :) or just sits and stares until they're like a block away. Thoughts on that?
    • She's come across a few dogs while on our walks and she's been ok. Lots of sniffing and she's cautious on approach - no signs of aggression
    • She hasnt had any issues with most of the people that I have allowed to pet her. Key word is most... On 2 occasions, she cowered and even growled when approach.
      • The first was a woman who seemed very apprehensive - even scared, at the thought of petting her and Koa didn't like her hesitation.
      • The second was a woman who came at her with crazy excited energy, and Koa immediately backed up and took an almost defensive stance
      • Not sure what to do about this other than monitor and advise anyone that I allow to pet her at this stage to come with calm and confident energy
    • She's super bitey. When we're playing with her, she's being nippy. We know this is normal and are OUCHING loud when she gets too rough to let her know that was too hard. She came to us at 6 weeks and 2 days so she isn't that great with the bite pressure yet - I think that will work itself out
      • We have a sphynx cat (hairless) and when he bites her too hard her skin stretches - so groww. But Ramses (the cat) let's Koa know when she's pulling or biting too hard
    • She's growled at us a few times when we pick her up while doing something she shouldn't be doing, ie, digging near the fence or munching on weeds in the grass. We've been maintaining the hold on her (just hold - no pressure) until she relaxes and starts licking us, at which point we treat and praise
    • She took to her crate right away. She'd been sleeping 1.5 hrs at a time before having to go out and potty, so we set an alarm to beat her to the punch before she even yelps. We're up to 2.5-3ish hours between overnight wake ups which is good and less exhausting
      • HOWEVER, we also introduced a dog bed which I keep with me in the kitchen where I work. She started to nap there instead of the crate 3 days ago. The first day I tried to alternate between crate and bed. At night, she gave us a hard time about going to the crate. 2nd night she was impossible, and we had to wait for her to practically go to sleep in the dog bed and then carried her over. Finally last night, we went back to alternating. However, she was so hyper that she just would not go to sleep so we played with her until I saw she was tired (1am), let her out to pee, and she practically walked herself into the crate.
      • Would love thoughts on whether she should just consistently be in the crate or if the bed is ok.
    That's all I have. She's been a great puppy and as I type this, she's laying across my feet asleep. I'm going to do some reading on the forum about many of these issues I mentioned above and will likely as questions in those appropriate threads. But feel free to sprinkle in some insights if you guys want to - really appreciate it, and look forward to the day I have enough experience to be able to advise others.


    PS - HOW DO YOU ADD IMAGES??? The prompt is asking me for a link... can't I just upload?
  5. Elizabeth Balcomb

    Elizabeth Balcomb Well-Known Member

    Hi there.. so a normal pic on your phone is too large to upload. Some people here use photobucket.. I just take a pic on watsapp, and upload that, it seems to work.

    Your girl is showing normal healthy puppy instincts about leaving home at this stage.. pups have an instinct to stay at the den until they are more physically able to look after themselves. If you think about mom leaving to go get food, and all her little ones joyously following her, there's not going to be a good survival rate.. often they are more brave if you have another dog , they imitate the other dogs confidence... cc's also love being on their own property. With a pup, it's enough to take them.a short distance from the gate, or pop them in a car and drive to a cafe that allows dogs , if she is a dog on her own I would keep the range small and tight.

    Keep in mind that her just seeing people, other dogs on leads, cars, motorbikes etc is enough for socializing... she doesn't have to actually interact. Imagine if you were sitting on the floor, tied to something and these big strangers, some of them behaving very suspiciously (human stranger feels scared, pup sees that as highly suspicious) come trundling straight to you and start touching you all over. Really wierd and unacceptable in the human world, we shouldn't expect our dogs to accept that. No wonder there are a lot of dogs who actually start behaving aggressively toward people and other dogs, trying to keep them away! Cane Corso are wary of strangers as adults, she should be rewarded for ignoring strangers and dogs while out and about. Let her choose who she wants to interact with, if someone asks you if they can pat your dog, ask them to sit down, and see if she wants to touch them. She's going to feel better about strangers if shes not expecting them to make a beeline at her, staring at her and touching her. No human child likes that, no human adult likes that...

    I took my guy to puppy classes, which was fun for both of us, but next time I would leave before the play time.. Puppy's don't know the rules yet, so it's the blind leading the blind.. if you have a friend or two with calm well behaved adult dogs who like puppies, make regular meeting times with them, get them to visit you, you visit them, meet at a park. In a society of dogs, the way to greet is a slow approach, in a curve, not direct, and then a hi (standing and wagging) and then a bum sniff, eye contact is diverted.. then widdling and sniffing, then maybe a game if they keen.

    Please read up about fear reaction periods. It is just so important to be aware of this phenomenon. When your pup is in one, to keep within the boundaries that she is totally comfortable in. To make absolutely sure her experiences are only positive.. it's a lot to handle! In CC' s their fear reaction periods are powerful.. the reason they are such great guard dogs is they are hyper alert to possible danger, I would actually use the word jumpy... it's very important that they learn to trust you. If a strange dog is baring down, get in the way, pick her up. If a strange person is baring down, het between pup and person. In this way she will learn that she's in safe hands.

    It's hard to comment on the growling thing, without seeing it. But my feeling is to lightly distract her out of it.. shes just expressing her will. Growling is actually great, it's a warning.. better than a dog who bites with no warning.

    It sounds like you are doing a great job with your pup, getting her into the world in a safe way.. it is just so important. Keep up the good work. At some stage obedience training with a group using positive methods is a must. Boxergirl has a great method for at home.. one whole meal for pup is kept in a treat bag, and pup is rewarded throughout the day for positive behaviour, playing on her own, lying quietly, coming when shes called. I can guarantee you she will come 100% if you always have a treat for her. When your training becomes praise for good behavior, for behavior you want, then it just takes off.. when pup offers you behavior she knows you want. Her confidence just soars. This is what you want. Take a look at clicker training.. there's also a section on this forum for training, and a lot of discussion there. Clickers really work
    Boxergirl and glen like this.
  6. Boxergirl

    Boxergirl Well-Known Member

    Not much to add to Elizabeth's reply. I'll just reinforce by adding my strong opinion that socialization isn't about meeting all the people/dogs or letting all the people/dogs touch or play. Socialization is making sure your pup is introduced to all manner of things in a safe and controlled way. As for growling, Elizabeth is spot on there too. A growl is a great thing. If people train the growl out of the dog then you take a way the dog's only way of expressing their discomfort and they must go to a bite without warning.

    Please post more pictures. We can never have too many pictures!
    glen likes this.
  7. Here are some current pics. Thanks so much for the advice!

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