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The Cane Corso has its roots as a Roman war dog that was bred to be used during battle as

well as herding the livestock for the army as it roamed around Europe. Once the wars were

over and the Roman Empire fell the Corso quickly became a farm and family dog watching

over their territory and protecting their homes. The Cane Corso is also called the Italitan

Mastiff because of its country or origin while the Bull Mastiff was bred and developed in

England.The Bull Mastiff was originally bred by farmers and landowners to protect the

property from poachers.

Let’s dig into the differences in their size and grooming requirements.

The Bull Mastiff and Cane Corso are both part of the mastiff breed so they are quite large

and the Bull Mastiff tends to be about an inch and 20 pounds bigger in general. The Cane

Corso is a newly recognized registered breed so there is still quite a bit of variation you'll find

in size, especially if from American breeders. It’s not uncommon for Corsos to top out around

150 pounds. In America, it’s common practice to crop their ears and often dock their tails as

well, whereas here in the UK that is not allowed.

Both breeds have short coats and minimal undercoat so they aren't ideal for extreme

weather but they should minimally. The biggest grooming difference you'll notice between

the Bull Mastiff and Cane Corso is the Bull Mastiff will almost always be more prone to

drooling then many Corsos. This is not to say that some Corsos don't have equally large

joules as the Bull Mastiff but know that you will be dealing with drool to some extent with

both of these breeds.

As longtime viewers of the show know I had a Bull Mastiff who I absolutely adored. She was

a wonderful and very laid back family dog that loved to laze around and just hang out with

us. Many of you probably also know that I recently had a Cane Corso puppy as well and you

can check out the video in the link to find out why I chose a Corso instead of another Bull


The Corso is a very loyal guard dog with a high drive and instinct to protect and guard. The

Corso will typically bond more with the person that feeds and trains them more frequently,

like most dogs, and is happiest when they’re family is with them. Both breeds are extremely

loyal and affectionate family dogs and have a natural instinct to watch and guard.

Now where we get into the bigger differences is there energy and intelligence. The Bull

Mastiff in general will have a much lower energy level. My Bull Mastiff and was very docile

and would much rather cuddle on the couch then go for a two-hour hike.

Corso's on the other hand tends to have a pretty high energy level for a mastiff dog. They

want to go out, they want to work, and they love to have a job. One of the main reasons that

I got a Corso was because I wanted a family guard dog that I could also take out and hike

and bike with for a couple hours each day.

The final category of comparison is training ability and while I absolutely adored my Bull

Mastiff and her personality, she was not as keen to reach a higher level of training or


Cane Corsos excel at obedience and agility work because of their intense desire to please

and higher energy levels. They are quick to respond to commands in obedience work and

will eagerly pick up new ones. They do tend to bond very closely to the family member that

feeds and trains them most often so it’s important that you also train them to be okay without

having you around since they are prone to separation anxiety.

This is where a Bull Mastiff makes up for its aversion to obedience work as they tend the

bond more evenly with everyone in the family and require less mental stimulation on a daily


I adore both of these breeds and have had wonderful experiences with them so it's hard to

really define which breed is better. For someone looking for more active or competition level

canine that also loves a good snuggle, I definitely suggest the Cane Corso.

If you're looking for a guard dog that is low energy and just wants to cuddle all day with

minimal exercise then the Bull Mastiff is probably a great choice for you if you are already a

calm and consistent leader.

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