Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix: Complete Guide

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix

You’ve probably heard of the Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix and want to learn more. This rare fascinating hybrid will knock you off your feet. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about this special designer dog. Let’s begin!

What is a German Corso?

german shepherd mix cane corso
German Shepherd Cane lying on the grass and enjoying the sun.

A German Corso is a German Shepherd mixed with Cane Corso. This rare hybrid dog combines the hardworking nature of the Cane Corso with the intelligence and versatility of the German Shepherd dog.

There are various Cane Corso mixes out there, but a Cane Corso Mix with a German Shepherd isn’t a dog you’ll find much info on. Aside from the certainty of size, a Cane Corso Shepherd Mix can be random depending on which parent it takes after.

Cane Corso vs German Shepherd

The Cane Corso shares several traits with the German Shepherd. Both dogs are excellent watchdogs and are ideal for guard duty. Both are big, strong, and are naturals at hunting and herding.

But the two dogs differ significantly in some physical aspects. So, don’t worry if you think you won’t be able to tell if a dog is Cane Corso or German Shepherd. Check out the table of all their similarities and differences.

This table will also give you an idea of what a Cane Corso Shepherd Mix will be like.

Cane Corso and German Shepherd similarities

Cane Corso and German Shepherd
SizeLarge
Purity Purebred
AKC RecognitionYes
BarkingMinimum
Owner experienceMedium
Weather preferenceWarm to cold
HealthHealthy
Energy levelHigh
HypoallergenicNo
Lifespan~ 9-13 years

Cane Corso and German Shepherd differences

Cane CorsoGerman Shepherd
Origin ItalyGermany
PurposeWorking dogHerding dog
CoatSmooth, shortDouble, medium
GroomingMinimalLow-to-medium
SheddingModerateExcessive
AffectionAverageVery high
FriendlinessFriendly with owner and childrenVery friendly with owner, strangers, children, and other pets
IntelligenceAverageVery high
DroolingHighMinimal

Cane Corso history

The Cane Corso, or the Italian Mastiff, is from an ancient breed of working dogs. They’ve been used in Italy for centuries as herders, hunters, and guards. The name “Cane Corso” means “guardian dog” in Latin. 

Cane Corsi came to America in the late 80s and became favorites among big dog enthusiasts for their imposing physique. The AKC officially recognized them in 2010 as purebred working dogs.

German Shepherd history

The German Shepherd is a comparatively young dog from the shepherd family. As sheep-herding dogs began losing their usefulness, the German Shepherd emerged as a versatile working dog able to do all kinds of jobs. The dog was among the earliest to get AKC recognition, getting registered in 1908.

Their superior intelligence and sharp senses make them ideal as service dogs, and you can find them working in search, rescue, healthcare, and law enforcement worldwide.

Cane Corso and German Shepherd as working dogs

cane corso mix breeds
King Corso mixed with German Shepherd

Both the Cane Corso and the German Shepherd have proven track records as excellent working dogs, and the Cane Corso and German Shepherd Mix inherit supreme work skills from both its parents.

The Cane Corso’s herding, hunting, and swimming skills made it useful in various roles around Italian farms. Their stamina and physical strength helped them become useful carting dogs.

But most prominently, their intimidating physique, territorial nature, and unmatched guarding skills made them ideal for protecting property and houses from intruders.

The German Shepherd was always a good herding dog, but its intelligence made it useful in many other fields. These dogs excelled in the army and law enforcement, search and rescue operations, bomb and drug detection, and healthcare.

With all this potential coming from both its parents, the Cane Corso German Shepherd hybrid will make an outstanding working dog in any field.

You might also like: Cane Corso Bulldog Mix – Complete Guide

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix physical appearance

Aside from their size, the German Shepherd and Cane Corso are physically pretty different. That’s why one German Shepherd and Cane Corso Mix may look nothing like another German Corso.

The German Shepherd is fluffy and lean; the Cane Corso is toned and stocky. Their snout, ears, tail, and coat are completely different. That’s why your Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix may look entirely like one parent or the other, or it may carry the physical features of both parents.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix coat colors

The Cane Corso usually comes in solid colors, whereas the German Shepherd is famous for its signature saddle coat. As with most mix-breed dogs, a German Corso can have any combination of colors. You can expect your Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix to have one of these coat colors:

Solids: black, blue, grey, liver, sable, white, fawn, or red.

Brindle: grey brindle, chestnut brindle, or black brindle.

Combination: any combination of the above colors.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix size, height, and weight

Height and weight are where Cane Corsi and German Shepherds are pretty much alike. These dogs are tall, muscular, and heavily built, and you can expect their offspring to be just as huge.

Both these dogs have bigger males and slightly smaller females; however, the size difference between males and females is more pronounced in German Shepherds.

Here’s a table to make things easy to understand.

German Corso Size

MaleFemale
Size groupLargeLarge
Height24 – 27.5 inches22 – 26 inches
Weight70 – 110 pounds60 – 100 pounds

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix temperament and personality

A Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix will likely be a protective, loyal, intelligent, and alert dog, ideal for guarding its owner’s life and property. Intruders won’t even think of entering the premises where a German Corso resides, and their razor-sharp teeth and bone-crushing jaws will make a believer out of anyone willing to test them.

At home, these dogs will be lovable companions. However, they don’t take kindly to strangers, and you’d need to control them around visitors. Don’t resent their vigilance and distrust; these qualities make them good guard dogs.

The Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix is an intelligent dog who is well aware of its strength. If you want it to respect your authority, you need to establish your stature as the alpha and embed it in your dog while it’s still young. If you can’t command respect from this dog, it will take over the alpha role and do as it pleases.

Do Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix get along with other pets?

Both the Cane Corso and the German Shepherd are excellent hunting and herding dogs, and a Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix will love running after any small animal it can find.

Your other pet will meet a sad fate if the German Corso gets its crushing jaws around it. So, try not to keep any other pets around when you have a Cane Corso German Shepherd mix in your house.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix training

Training your Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix is a breeze, thanks to its eagerness to please and ability to retain commands.

The German Shepherd can learn various instructions quickly and has no trouble remembering its training when needed. The Cane Corso is also a fast learner and likes it when its owner gives it work to do.

The Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix is a headstrong and mighty dog, so it’s best to train it accordingly by someone who has experience handling big dogs.

You wouldn’t want a 100-pound German Corso getting too excited and jumping towards everyone they like, which is why you also need to teach them to stop and calm down on cue.

Early socialization will also help shape your German Corso’s personality. Poorly socialized dogs grow to fear other dogs and people, and that makes them aggressive.

An aggressive Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix will be a loaded weapon that can go off on anyone unfortunate enough to be in its way.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix exercise requirement 

The German Shepherd is a super-active dog breed that requires ample daily physical activity. The Cane Corso is comparatively less active but is still a hardworking dog with plenty of stamina.

Combine them, and you get a mix that needs at least an hour and a half of exercise every day.

Simple walks won’t do; the Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix needs games and activities that challenge it mentally and physically. However, the exercise requirement depends on the age. Don’t overexert young pups, and stick to a lighter exercise schedule when your dog is elderly.

When in public, don’t let your German Corso off the leash until he or she is a little tired. A fresh dog is too full of energy and excitement and may chase after people. Only take the leash off after the dog has calmed down a bit.

Failing to meet this dog’s activity quota and leaving reserve energy can make their behavior destructive. With this dog’s power and bite strength, that’s the last thing you want.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix grooming and cleaning

The grooming requirement for your Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix will depend on which coat the dog inherits. If it takes after the Cane Corso, grooming it will be a breeze. Cane Corsi have a short coat and shed minimally, and brushing them once a week is enough.

In contrast, the German Shepherd has a fluffy double coat and sheds a lot. If your German Corso inherits that coat, you’ll need to brush them daily and vacuum their loose fur off their body.

Avoid bathing your German Corso too frequently. Washing them too often will wash out the natural oils on the dog’s skin and lead to skin issues. Stick to damp towels and perfumed wipes and bath them a few times a year.

You need to monitor your dog’s ears and clean them whenever they get too dirty. Checking their ears is crucial if your German Corso inherits the floppy ears of the Cane Corso. Floppy ears hide earwax buildup and infections, and their hygiene can get overlooked.

Is Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix hypoallergenic?

No, Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix is not hypoallergenic. The German Corso is likely to inherit the heavy shedding from its German Shepherd side.

Even if they don’t shed a lot, they likely won’t be hypoallergenic, and people with dog allergies should avoid keeping this dog around.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix food and diet

It isn’t easy to specify the dietary requirements of Mix breeds. A dog’s daily food intake depends on its size, age, activity level, and breed.

But since Cane Corso and German Shepherds are pretty similar in height and weight, we can safely say that a typical German Corso will need at least 3 to 4 cups of high-quality dog food daily.

It’s best to break their daily food quota into multiple meals to keep them full throughout the day. Note that the German Corso is prone to getting overweight, so avoid fatty foods and stick to lean protein with some carbs. Keep human foods away and avoid giving this dog snacks and candies.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix common health issues

The German Shepherd suffers from numerous ailments. Experts believe these diseases exist because this dog has been inbred a lot to keep its lineage pure and in line with the AKC standards.

The Cane Corso, on the other hand, has only achieved AKC recognition in 2010 and has more genetic diversity than the German Shepherd.

A Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix will likely be healthier than its German Shepherd parent, but it can still inherit one or more of the following health problems.

1. Hip dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is common among large dogs and is prevalent among Cane Corso and German Shepherds.

Hip dysplasia is when the hip socket fails to develop correctly, causing hip joints to rub against the bone instead. Hip osteoarthritis is painful and can lead to paralysis of the lower body.

2. Elbow dysplasia

Elbow dysplasia is similar to hip dysplasia as it also affects large dogs. The elbow fails to develop correctly in the affected dog, causing joints to rub against the bone instead of their socket. 

Both elbow and hip dysplasia are genetic conditions that can be avoided if the German Corso’s parents have no history of these diseases.

3. Bloat

Bloat is common among broad-chested dogs and happens when the dog is unable to expel its stomach gases.

Eating too much too fast can cause gases to get trapped inside, leading to bloat. Bloat is painful and uncomfortable to the dog, and it can lead to a fatal condition called gastric torsion.

4. Degenerative disc disease

It is a genetic disease of the spine that affects German Shepherds more than other breeds. Being degenerative means that this condition worsens with time and can end with total paralysis.

Your Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix may not have it, but if they do, you can reduce the symptoms by proper diet, weight management, and physical therapy.

5. Epilepsy

Epilepsy is another German Shepherd disease that is hereditary and has no cure. Dogs with epilepsy experience random seizures—especially under stressful situations.

Epilepsy’s causes are still unknown, but they’re another genetic disease that can be avoided by only using healthy parents to breed.

6. Hemophilia

Inbreeding is prevalent among German Shepherds, and one of the byproducts of this practice is hemophilia.

Hemophilia affects the blood’s ability to clot, which is a feature that prevents excessive blood loss in case of an injury. For a dog with hemophilia, minor bruises and small cuts can become life-threatening injuries.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix lifespan 

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix is a pretty big dog. Such dogs have smaller lifespans than toy breeds, and you can expect this mix to have a lifespan of 10 to 12 years. Although it may sound brief, it is standard for dogs their size.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix adoption

You’d likely find many shelters and rescues with Cane Corso German Shepherd Mixes. That’s because these dogs aren’t fit for every dog owner—especially those with no prior experience—and they get abandoned when their owners can’t figure out how to deal with them.

They also require ample living space, and many owners have trouble keeping them in their homes once they grow up.

Do note that you’ll probably only find adult dogs at rescues and shelters. Their medical history may be unknown, and they may not have proper training.

Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix puppies for sale and price

If an adult dog isn’t what you want and you’re looking for Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix puppies, you’ll have better luck with reputable breeders.

Although adoption is a rewarding and inexpensive option, buying from trusted breeders ensures you get a healthy, young, and well-behaved dog. 

Another reason why purchasing is a good option is that this dog doesn’t cost a lot. German Shepherd Cane Corso Mix puppies go for about $500 to $1,000.

Most breeders screen their pups and their parents extensively, and you’ll get a health guarantee when purchasing through them.

Unfortunately, there are many shady breeders mixing breeds to produce dogs that look intimidating and dangerous. These breeders don’t care about the dog’s health as long as it attracts lots of buyers. They also won’t provide any health records of the dog’s parents.

For all those reasons, we recommend sticking to registered breeders.

Is the Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix right for me?

If you need a robust, tenacious, and loyal guard dog that will make a fun and playful pet, look no further than the Cane Corso German Shepherd Mix.

However, if you don’t have experience with large canines, live in a cramped space, or would like to keep other pets at home, this may not be the dog for you.

Related Questions

Is a German Shepherd and Cane Corso a good mixture for a dog breed?

The German Corso is an excellent mix of tenacity, intelligence, and strength. However, this dog’s size and power can be too much, which is why we recommend going for a smaller-sized cross.

What is the best mix with Cane Corso?

Cane Corso Labrador crosses make brilliant dogs. You can also look into the Cane Corso Bullmastiff and the German Corso.

Is a Cane Corso bigger than a German Shepherd?

The Cane Corso is only one or two inches taller than the German Shepherd. But due to its heavier build, the Cane Corso outweighs the German Shepherd by about 20 to 30 pounds.

How big do German Corsos get?

German Corsos can get as tall as 28 inches at the shoulders and weigh over 110 pounds.

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The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional veterinary advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Resources:

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/277046051_Body_measurements_and_morphological_evaluation_of_Italian_Cane_Corso

https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/cane-corso/

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