Animals in our lives -  Presa Canarios-- Giant Pit Bulls? (146 views) Notify me whenever anyone posts in this discussion.Subscribe
From: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host1/24/02 3:11 PM 
To: All  (1 of 21) 
Lots of controversy about a relatively new dog breed called a "Presa Canario". These are huge muscular dogs that resemble Pit Bulls but are twice as big.

There's a trial taking place now in San Francisco:

Jury questioning begins in dog attack

By Linda Deutsch

Jan. 24, 2002 | LOS ANGELES (AP) --

Hundreds of people were called as potential jurors Thursday for the trial of a San Francisco couple charged with a neighbor's gruesome dog-mauling death.

Defendants Robert Noel and Marjorie Knoller were taken into the room to observe the initial questioning of more than 200 people. Some 800 potential jurors been called for Thursday and Friday.

They are charged in the mauling death of Diane Whipple, a 33-year-old college lacrosse coach who was attacked Jan. 26, 2001, as she carried groceries to her Pacific Heights

Knoller and Noel, both attorneys, have accused Whipple of provoking the attacks. They have portrayed their presa canario dogs, which weighed 125 and 110 pounds, as blameless.

The whole story:

And here is a pic of a 123 lb Presa Canario

And here you can get an idea of their size:>

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From: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host1/24/02 3:19 PM 
To: All  (2 of 21) 
 7611.2 in reply to 7611.1 
And here is a description of the breed...

These "Canary" dogs are powerful, muscular, large-boned, gripping dogs, who are both intelligent and athletic. The Presa is strong but even-tempered, thus allowing for easy training and control. They are known to be trust worthy and predictable. While the Presa is energetic and loves to play hard, they are not hyper. This breed is extremely loyal to their family/owners and protective of their domain. The Presa is a natural home guardian, who is acutely aware of human adrenal odor. He is quite adept at discriminating between the good and the bad guys. The Presa is recognized as a true man-stopper.

The island Presa is a tenacious foe and was used extensively as a successful fighting dog and was popular to this end in the islands through the first four decades of this century. Dog fighting was banned in the 1940's, although clandestine fights were still organized, the breeding and selectivity of this dog fell out of favor, and these fine animals were reduced to merely shepherding or guard duties.

From Show Stopper Kennels:

Hmmmm Would you own one of these dogs? How about if you had small children in the house?


From: S1REN11/24/02 5:16 PM 
To: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon  (3 of 21) 
 7611.3 in reply to 7611.2 
I'll be brave and say something first.

I don't know that I'd ever own a dog that had been bred for hundreds of years FOR fighting and attacking. Jeez, that's a scary thought.

But, I have and always will maintain that a HUGE part of a dog's demeanor has to do with the care it receives and how the owner uses it. Even a Pit Bull, when given plenty of love and affection and lots of safe play will be a sweet and calm animal. I've known Rotties and Huskies, PBs, and even a Doberman who were all just big teddy bears that wouldn't crush a fly. People that use thier dogs as guards, train them to attack, play very roughly with them, abuse them, tease them, ignore them completely or otherwise encourage "bad dog" behavior; will end up with dogs that attack people. Heck, my neighbor has a **Chihuahua** that they yank around on a choke chain, slap, yell at, and leave cooped up in their 1-bedroom apartment for ten hours a day, with one 5-minute walk; they act like they hate it. And it's a little monster...this little tiny thing will attack anything it sees! Now, Chihuahuas ARE yappy little dogs, but they're not generally mean.

Before any one goes "but...!!" yeah, I agree that in this case it probably wasn't ALL the owner's fault--but there's a certain responsibility that goes with owning a large dog, as well as in owning an animal that has been bred to attack or fight. You can't expect a Canary, or a part-wolf, or something to have the same emotional needs and care requirements that you'd give to say, a Shih-Tzu or a terrier. It may be a shortcoming on my own part, but I just can not believe that anyone who would keep an animal that size in an apartment building had the dog's best interests and well-being in mind.

I'm really interested to see how this trial comes out, since the couple that owns the dog is actually coming to trial. Where I live, I've heard about several of these cases--and the fight is always about destroying the animal, never about the responsibility of the owner.


p.s. everyone note I said "I believe" up there...I'm not meaning to ruffle anyone's fur...I know a lot of people just believe some dogs are just mean. This is just my opinion.


And the Lord said, "Let there be light!" And the Lady said, "Turn it on yourself".

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From: Seomus1/25/02 6:41 PM 
To: S1REN1  (4 of 21) 
 7611.4 in reply to 7611.3 
Looking at the couple's reaction directly after the attack, where they got the dogs from, etc, I say it's the owners' faults entirely. I have no pity for them. In fact I hold nothing but revulsion for them.

"...for, as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom -- for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself."
- Scots' Declaration of Arbroath
6th April, 1320


From: Helen, the Crazy Cat Lady (ching_serve) DelphiPlus Member Icon1/26/02 1:14 AM 
To: S1REN1  (5 of 21) 
 7611.5 in reply to 7611.3 
I think the Presa is one of the really early variations of the Mastiff, bred to be larger.

My aunt and cousin own and breed English Mastiffs. Huge beasts, they sound quite viscious, but are all sweethearts. I know the dogs and I wouldn't step through their front door without someone being there to run interference. When we stayed there two years ago, one of the dogs decided to sleep in the bed with me. Did you ever try to convince a 185 pound critter to get off you legs? Every time I moved, the dog growled. Needless to say, I stayed where I was. As I said, I love the dogs to death, but I'd just as soon not be an appetizer.

As the dogs age and die off [they're down to one dog apiece now] my cousin has begun breeding hedge hogs and chinchillas. For some reason, she doesn't appreciate the jokes about breeding her own collars and cuffs.


From: Saffire (SAFFIREM)1/26/02 5:24 PM 
To: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon  (6 of 21) 
 7611.6 in reply to 7611.2 
I don't think I'd own one... I don't think I'd own any dog for that matter, I'm just not a dog person.

My boss has a Rottie and an Akida... I trust the Rottie.. he's a big hambone and a lovey... he's also purebreed and at age 5 has already having hip problems, so sometimes he's a gimpy walker... the Akida on the other hand.. don't trust her... she got under the desk once and I tried putting my legs under there with her.. she growled real low in her belly, I pulled my legs away and gave her her space... she's not as personable as the Rottie either.. the Rottie is like an overgrown child trapped in a huge muscular dogs body.. LOL. There's a "friend" that sometimes visits them, he's a German Shepard.. I've not had any problems with him, once he knows it's me.. however if someone didn't identify themselves without his owner present.. gods save their souls.. he may not be as big as the other two, but I think he could hold his own..

My mom has a German Shepard mix, she got from the SPCA... she's a pain in the arse, but harmless.. she has the demeaner of a nursemaid but she is a runaway so she continues to try and make a break, even after 6 years with my mom... this dog would let my son crawl all over her and never say a thing.. obviously we were present and kept her goofy paws out of his way (she has a habit of getting them into trouble without thinking).. he'd clench her fur.. drool all over and even gnawed on her from time to time.. she's endured him for 5 years and I think if someone was harming him, she'd rip their throats out, but on a day to day basis, she's a softie...

I think a dog is a dog but it's humans who screw up with their temperment. Some breeds may have temperament issues, but I've seen where training has kept their instincts (and made them good guard dogs) but also made them good housemates and even part of the family.

To that end, the "fiercest" dog I've ever seen is my sister's Pomeranian (or however you spell it).. this little thing, no bigger than a cat, I swear would bring down an intruder... she used to have quite the bark on her (shrill, ear piercing bark) and she wasn't adverse to attacking first and asking questions later.. of course only yer shins were ever in danger... and a few years ago her barker was removed so now she just makes a funny chirpy noise... but she's still a fiesty little thing!

I knew one pit bull.. she was a gem... she was a trucker's dog and went everywhere with him, ate what he ate and everything.. HER name was on the passenger door of his truck instead of his wife's... the only time she'd attack was if someone broke in (to their home or the truck) or if someone threatened her food or her pups (when she had a litter)... other than that, she'd love ya to death, so long as you threw her a rock to fetch (yes, a rock) or fed her something...


From: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host1/26/02 11:58 PM 
To: Saffire (SAFFIREM)  (7 of 21) 
 7611.7 in reply to 7611.6 
Some breeds may have temperament issues, but I've seen where training has kept their instincts (and made them good guard dogs) but also made them good housemates and even part of the family.

There are instincts that have been bred into dogs for so many years that to think you can just "train" them differently is pretty foolish. For example-- Dachshunds in a pack will rip apart a cat if they can catch it-- it's natural instinct and what they have been bred for over many many years.

If a dog comes from a long line of fighters you may be able to train it to become a "house pet", but if you decide to leave your 2 year old unattended with said pet, you are flirting with disaster.

I also knew someone who had a Pit Bull that was just an overgrown baby. But I wouldn't have left my sons unattended with him no matter what.

The Presa Canario has been used for years and years as a fighting dog-- that behavior is inbred in them. I think somewhere down the road it might be bred out of them, but I still wouldn't trust them.

And as for these owners- I think they knew just how dangerous their dogs really were

just my 2 cents...


From: Alicia (AliciaP4)1/27/02 10:09 AM 
To: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon  (8 of 21) 
 7611.8 in reply to 7611.7 
Hi - The way that breeds have been bred for fighting purposes is they raise dogs and observe which ones react most effectively to the training methods and have the most natural ability. The dogs most sucessful in their 'career' are the ones that are used for future breeding. This perpetuates the instinct and even builds on it. Still, I think that the training of each animal is key to behavior in most cases. For example, I own a breed that is considered by some as diminant agressive. I had a hard time trying to find an obedience class that would take us! He is a Chesapeake Bay Retriever. The breed was developed to retrieve ducks and geese out of the cold Chesapeake Bay all year round and protect the catch from theives in the night. He certainly has the instincts, but he doesn't seem to know what to do with it. He will try to pull my arm off to get to the ducks at the park but if I let him go he runs at them scattering them everywhere(wouldn't be much help to a duck hunter). If I throw something for him to retrieve he races after it but has no idea what to do with it. He was never trained to do what he was bred for. Same with protection. He is very alert and barks menacingly when someone comes to the door but if they come in he licks them all over because he has never met a bad person. He wasn't trained to be protective either. So with these pit bulls, I think they had the instincts to act as they did but I think they had to be incouraged to do so. The issue of an owners responsibilty for thier pets behavior is a whole other thing. I think these people should be treated severely under the law for the death of their neighbor and prevented from doing such a cruel thing to other animals for the rest of their lives. Both the animals and the woman who was killed are victims in my opinion. Interestingly, Law and Order did a similar theme this season. The prosecution compared the use the dogs to a weapon. It was as if they had left a loaded gun out in the open if the prosecution could prove they knew their dog was a danger. The gun was not to blame but the people were. Although optimistic, I think it is a good idea.
Alicia Parsons P.Ag.

"I tell you this..
No eternal reward will forgive us now
For wasting the dawn. "
--the Doors--


From: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon Posted by host1/27/02 11:06 AM 
To: Alicia (AliciaP4)  (9 of 21) 
 7611.9 in reply to 7611.8 
This, I think, is where we differ:

So with these pit bulls, I think they had the instincts to act as they did but I think they had to be incouraged to do so.

You don't have to encourage Dachshunds in a pack to try to rip a cat apart. You don't have to teach a Lab how to swim. These are behaviors that have been bred into them for years and years. I think you have to work very hard to change behaviors like these if you desire the animal not to act out on them


From: Alicia (AliciaP4)1/29/02 3:33 PM 
To: Tarty (RAVENGIL) DelphiPlus Member Icon  (10 of 21) 
 7611.10 in reply to 7611.9 
I think we disagree but it could be a bit of both. The lab for instance, he instinctively can swim but does he know it? The first incounter will likely be testing the funny wet stuff and sniffing etc but throw a duck into the equation and he will try to get in the water and figure out he can swim. The big difference I see with these dogs is they were bred to be fighters but I'm not sure they were bred to seek out prey and destroy it. I think it is more like triggering their highly sensitive personal space or property protecting mechanism. Still I'm not ruching out to get one and if I ever had one (can't see this) I would certainly do everything possible it was never in a situation that could possibly result in an attack. People who treat animals of any kind ina nonchalant manner are asking for trouble. Like with Blake, people ask to pat him and I say he realy likes pats on the bum. THat's because pats on the head end up with him mouthing your hands. It doesn;t hurt but you never know. It's just called responsible pet ownership and these people don;t have it!!!!
Alicia Parsons P.Ag.

"I tell you this..
No eternal reward will forgive us now
For wasting the dawn. "
--the Doors--


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