The ideal Dogo Argentino is a study in harmony. He is large, powerful, and athletic. His strong head is supported by a thick, but elegant neck that connects to a balanced body, which is sustained by straight, substantial forelegs and very muscular, medium-angulated hindquarters. The Dogo gives the impression of explosive power and energy. Developed to find, chase and catch dangerous game the Dogo must have a good nose, great lung capacity, and a powerful, yet agile, muscular build. His expression is alert and intelligent, with a marked hardness. The Dogo is instantly identifiable by his short, completely white coat.
The Dogo Argentino's head gives him his unique stamp. The combined length of the muzzle and face should be the same length as the skull, and was designed to give the dogo a sufficiently large mouth, both length and width wise, for holding prey. Great value is placed upon this equal lengths ratio of 1:1 and a large mouth.
Judges should first consider the general appearance and overall balance of the Dogo Argentino, with utmost consideration given to type. Special attention is then devoted to the head; followed by individual body components for correctness, and the gait thoroughly evaluated for efficiency.
Size and weight
Dogs: 23.5 to 25.5 inches.
Bitches: 23.5 to 25 inches.
Dogs: 90lbs to 100lbs
Bitches: 85lbs to 95lbs
The combined length of the muzzle and face is the same length as the skull. The withers are slightly higher than the croup. The depth of the chest represents at least 50% of the height at the withers. The body is slightly off-square; the length of body can exceed the height at the withers by up to 10%.Substance
Substantially-boned and muscular, with a large and powerful head. Females are slightly smaller than males and look feminine, but without weakening substance or structure.Head
Of mesocephalic type. Powerful and balanced. The line joining the orbital apophyses is equidistant from the occiput and the alveolar ridge of the upper jaw. The craniofacial axes are slightly convergent to parallel.Skull
Solid and convex, both length and width wise, due to the relief created by the insertion of the powerful biting and nape muscles; these muscles hide the occiput. The cheeks and masseter muscles are large, well defined, and covered with tight skin. The stop is slightly defined, as a transition from the convex skull to the slightly concave foreface. When viewed in profile, the stop appears more defined due to the prominence of the supraorbital ridges (brow).Expression
Alert and intelligent, with a marked hardness.Eyes
Medium size, almond shaped, dark or hazelnut in color, protected by thick black or flesh-colored eyelids (black preferred). Sub-frontal position, set wide apart.Ears
Set at the highest points of the sides of the skull. They must be cropped, erect or semi-erect, and triangular in shape. Length does not exceed 50% of the front edge of the auricle of the ear.Muzzle and Nose
The top line of the muzzle is nearly level and should not slant down (downfaced), nor should it be overly concave (dishfaced); however, the tip of the nose should have a slight stop at the tip. The nose is completely black and has large nostrils.Bite and Jaw Structure
The jaw bones are well-developed, strong, and fit together correctly, not being over or undershot. The power of the Dogo’s bite comes from the angulation on the bottom jaw. Scissor bite is preferred, but pincer bite is acceptable. The lack of molars or premolars is acceptable but undesirable. Teeth should be healthy and large. Broken teeth are not to be penalized on hunting dogs.Lips
The lips are very short and tight, pigmented in black; never pendulous. Very short lips are demanded so that when the dog is holding prey in his mouth, he can still breath through the commissure at the back corner of his mouth. "Lippy" dogs are to be severely penalized.Neck
Thick, strong, and arched, yet elegant. The skin is very thick and wrinkled, without forming excessive dewlap. The elasticity of the skin is due to the cellular tissue being very lax.Back and Topline
The withers and back are very strong, with well defined muscles. The topline is highest at the withers and slightly slopes to the croup. A topline that levels out below the withers is acceptable. A longitudinal groove, created by the relief of the dorsal muscles, runs along the dog's spine. Seen from the side the topline should not have any depression.Body
Slightly off square. The length of the body (measured from the point of the shoulder to point of the buttock) may exceed the height at the withers by only 10%. The chest is broad and deep, giving the impression of large lungs. The thorax is deep, and when viewed from the front and in profile it extends past the elbows.
The loins are short and muscular. The kidneys are concealed by the dorsal muscles. The underline is well muscled, with only a slight to moderate tuck-up of the abdomen. The croup is muscular, broad and gently sloping. The tail is medium set and long. It is thick at the base and tapers like a saber; does not extend past the hock joint. At rest it hangs down naturally, in action it is raised in an arc with an ample curve. The hair on the tail is short.Forequarters
Legs are straight, and vertical. Shoulders are laid back, with great muscular development, yet are not exaggerated. The upper arm is the same length as the shoulder; well inclined. Elbows are placed naturally against the chest wall.
Forelegs are as long as the upper leg, and are nearly perpendicular to the ground. They are straight with strong bone and muscles, and when viewed from the front, stand parallel to each other. The pastern joint is broad and in line with the forearm, without bony prominences or skin folds. The pastern is rather flat, well boned; seen from the side it is slightly inclined, without exaggeration. The front feet have short and tight-fitting toes; pads are strong, thick, and preferably black.Hindquarters
Broad, with very muscular thighs and short rear pasterns. Normally angulated. Strong hocks, perpendicular to the ground, neither turned in or out. Rear feet similar to front feet but slightly smaller. Without dewclaws. The stifles are well angulated.Coat
Uniform, short, smooth, with an average length of .5 to .75 in.Color
The hair must be entirely white. The whole length of the hair shaft is white. Spotty coats and excessive ticking are unacceptable. The only tolerable patch is one black or dark-colored patch of hair on the head in front of the ears. The size of the spot must not exceed 10% of the head. Comparing two dogs of equal quality, the whiter is preferred. The eyelids and lips are preferably pigmented in black. Black pigmented skin anywhere on the dog is acceptable.Gait
Agile and firm with noticeable modification when showing interest in something, changing into an attitude of alertness and responding with quick reflexes. Viewed from the side, proper front and rear angulation is manifested in a smoothly efficient, level-backed, ground covering stride with a powerful drive emanating from the rear. Viewed from the front or rear, the legs are parallel but converge towards the centerline as speed increases. The Dogo’s gait should always appear harmonious and balanced, showcasing his solid and sound body construction.Character and Temperament
The Dogo is a strong, tenacious and rustic dog that was created to protect family and property, as well as to hunt large game and destructive predators. He is a faithful companion at home and in the field. Of all of the Dogo's attributes, he is, above all else, courageous.