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The History of the Cane Corso



Historical milestones:


1957: Professor Giovanni Bonatti publishes the first article that mentioned the need to save the Cane Corso breed.


1970's: The recovery of the Cane Corso breed begins.


1980: Pulic interest in the breed stregthen the the recovery process.


1983: The SACC - The Society Amatori Cane Corso, is formed by Dr. Breber and five others.

           The breed standard is published in Dr. Giovanni Ventura book -"Il Cane Corso".


1984: The SACC contacts ENCI to start the process of regonizing the Cane Corso as a breed.


1986: ENCI assigns Dr. Antonio Morsiani to draft a standard for the Cane Corso.

           Based on the evaluation of about 90 Corsos, Basir and his sister were used as the male and female

           prototypes for the standard.


1987: The official standard of the Cane Corso is approved by ENCI.


1988: A survey was done on more than 50 Corsos from several different locations throughout Italy to compare their resemblance to the newly proposed standard. ENCI was then presented with the results.


USA 1988: Mike Sottile Sr. (a Neapolitan Mastiff  breeder from the US) imports a litter of 16 pups from a farmer in Sicily that he calls the rare "Sicilian Branchiero". Later that same year, he drafts his own breed standard for the Sicilian Branchiero and registers all his imports with his privately owned registry - FIC (Federation of International Canines).


1990: ENCI allows Open Book Certification for adults that are consistent with the standard. A total of 561 Cane Corsos were certified by ENCI approved judges. In order to be approved, the dogs had to be inspected by two ENCI certified judges.  Pups born from two certified parents were eligible for registration in Open Book as well as any offspring born from these dogs.


1988 - 1990: Mike Sottile Sr. continues to import Sicilian Branchieros.Somewhere within these years, the name of the dogs he imported and registered as Sicilian Branchiero was changed to Cane Corso.


1992/1993: Mark & Tracy Wilson and Ed & Kristie Hodas (Belmonte Kennels) form the International Cane Corso Federation in the United States. The Wilsons and The Hodas' open and incorporate a privately owned, for profit, registry for the Cane Corso named the ICCF Registry.


1994: ENCI recognizes the Cane Corso as the 14th Italian breed.1994: Nancy Sottile, ex-wife of Mike Sottile Sr.,  took over the FIC registry.


1995: Mark Wilson & others travel to Italy on several occassions.  During one trip to Italy, Mark Wilson meets with S.A.C.C. in an attempt to obtain recognition for the ICCF as the approved American breed club.


1996: The Cane Corso is presented to FCI and is recognized on an international level. (Please note that FCI is an internationally known registry while FIC is a privately owned registry in the U.S.).


Late 1995-1996:  Mark Wilson leaves the ICCF  for personal reasons.  The ICCF club and registry are separated .  The Hodas' (Bel Monte) take ownership over the ICCF Registry.


1997: SACC sends letter to ICCF stating they have no interest in recognizing the ICCF as the American breed club for the Cane Corso due to failures to meet SACC requirements.


1999: ENCI removes SACC as the official breed club for the Cane Corso. To date, there is no officially recognized breed club for the Cane Corso in Italy.


2000: ICCF revised their standard to more closely resemble that of the FCI standard for the Cane Corso Italiano.


2003/2004:  ENCI turns down the AICC and once again  recognizes SACC as the official breed club for the Cane Corso


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