Country of Origin: The Fila Brasileiro breed was created in Brazil from the Mastiff, Bulldog, Bloodhound and the Rafeiro. The Fila Brasileiro is a working breed and was primarily bred on livestock farms and plantations. The breed was primarily utilized to herd and guard livestock, but was also quite talented at hunting and tracking. The Fila Brasileiro, once it had located it's prey, would take the animal down by the neck and hold it still until the hunter had arrived. The Fila Brasileiro was known for taking down not only cattle and other small animals, but larger game such as jaguars and even runaway slaves when it was still legal to own slaves in Brazil. The Fila Brasileiro became a registered breed by the Brazillian Confederation Kennel Club in 1946. Unfortunately, the Fila Brasileiro's propensity towards aggression has caused the breed to become illegal in several countries including the United Kingdom, Israel, Denmark, Norway, Malta and Cyprus. Several other countries also have strict restrictions in regards to the Fila Brasileiro.
Size: The Fila Brasileiro will typically reach heights of 25.5-29.5 inches and an average weight of 90-110 pounds.
Coat: The Fila Brasileiro's coat is a very distinct characteristic. The coat itself is short and smooth and sheds on an average basis, and the skin is very thick and loose. The loose skin is most pronounced at the neck and muzzle. The Fila Brasileiro can come in many color variations of nearly any color solid or brindle. The only color disqualifications are white, mouse gray, patched, dapple or black and tan. Varying levels of intensity in the brindle striping is acceptable. The most common coat colors are fawn, brindle and black with or without a black mask. It is permitted for a Fila Brasileiro to have white markings, however, they should be confined to the feet, chest and tip of the tail. Any white markings elsewhere on the body is undesirable.
Character: The Fila Brasileiro is an extremely protective, loyal and faithful breed. They are regarded as excellent guard dogs that will jump to protect the family without hesitation. It is in the Fila Brasileiro's nature to protect and they will not require training to do so. However, in turn you will not be able to train the protective instinct out of the Fila Brasileiro. The Fila Brasileiro is not for the inexperienced pet owner. The owner of a Fila Brasileiro must be familiar with the breed as well as be a very strong and assertive pack leader. The Fila Brasileiro must understand his place in the pack below the human family members, as this is a large and potentially dangerous breed.
Temperament: The Fila Brasileiro is a very loving, affectionate and courageous breed. This breed will become very attached to his owner and will prefer to spend much of his time with them. However, though the Fila Brasileiro loves his owner, he loves the rest of the family just as much. This breed is well known for fiercely loving the children in their family and are happy to take all the abuse they can give. They are also known to love and protect other non-canine family pets as well. The Fila Brasileiro, however, does not do well with strangers and will almost always be distrustful of them regardless of the level of socialization. The Fila Brasileiro is not recommended for homes that enjoy a good deal of entertaining family and friends, as this breed does not enjoy strangers in his home. However, it is necessary to begin and continue socialization from a young age through adulthood in an effort to prevent extreme aggressive behavior.
Care: The Fila Brasileiro requires very little grooming. Brush the short smooth coat with a firm bristle brush occasionally. Wiping the coat of the Fila Brasileiro with a piece of towel or chamois will give the coat a healthy glow. Bathe the Fila Brasileiro only when necessary.
Training: The Fila Brasileiro need early socialization with new situations and require basic obedience. They can be very hard headed and stubborn. The Fila Brasileiro is usually very easy to housebreak.
Activity: The Fila Brasileiro requires daily vigorous exercise. This breed has a large amount of energy and requires space to run in a safe and secure area. Like most dogs, the Fila Brasileiro can become high strung and even destructive when not provided with the proper amount of exercise.
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