Breed: Fighting dog
Height: 22-24 inches
Weight: 55-79 pounds
Coat: White short coat
Dogo Guatemalteco or Guatemalan Bull Terrier is believed to have originated in England. These dogs were originally bred for bull baiting and fighting in the pits, against other dogs, badgers and vermins. Even today, they are famous for their tenacity, ferocity, stamina, and intelligence. Known as the ‘Gladiator’ among his canine mates, Dogo Guatemalteco not only makes a great fighter, but is also a good defender. The dog is strong and muscular and looks intelligent too. It is very active and has a playful personality. Dogo Guatemaltecos are very pleasant dogs and thrive on affection and companionship. They are generally of two kinds - the standard type and the larger or giant type. The larger types of Dogo Guatemalteco are believed do be a mix of Dogo Guatelmateco and Dogo Argentino and are a big rage among the breeders. These dogs make great guardians and are used to guard farms and families. Read on to know more about this dog breed.
Dogo Guatemalteco is a terrier of indisputably Guatemalan origin and its early roots can be traced to the large white English Bull Terrier, Dalmatian and Boxer. Although this breed existed as early as 1920's, it was not until 1930’s that it was officially recognized. Earlier, Dogo Guatemalteco dogs had big black or brown spots on their coat (from Dalmatian influence) and were called Bull Terrier Guatemalteco, because of their English Bull Terrier origin. It was only because of the initiation of veterinarian and Zootechnician Dr. Arturo R. Chavez that the breed got its present name and international status. The Gallusser family is held as the pioneer of this breed, who bred this dog as early as 1930’s. Mr. Richard Gallusser, together with Eng Hector Montenegro (deceased) was the first one to register the dog with the National Canine Genealogical Register.
Montenegro is often accredited for creating this outstanding breed of dogs. However, the progenitors of Dogo Guatemalteco still remain unknown. The extensive research conducted over the years has revealed that Dogo Guatemalteco might have originated from the Dogue de Bordeaux, Dalmatian, Boxer, Bull Terrier and the now extinct Cordoba Fighting Dog. Its immense endurance has been credited to the Dalmatian, its trainability and intelligence to Boxer, its unwavering determination, courage and great strength to Dogue de Bordeaux and Cordoba Fighting Dog and its doggedness, bold temperament and even the white colored coat to Bull Terrier. In 1981, Guatemalan Bull Terrier was made the official breed of Guatemala.
Dogo Guatelmateco somewhat resembles the American Pit Bull Terrier and to some extent, the American Bulldog as well. This medium-sized white breed is muscular and has a tall body. It has a large square head, square muzzle, and strong undershot jaw. Dogo Guatelmateco dogs have exceptionally sharp teeth. Their ears are somewhat remarkable and can either stand in the natural pendent style or be a bit cropped up, like Boxer or Doberman. They have tight skin and smooth, dense coat that is a little rough to the touch. These dogs are famous for their white coat and some of them may have black patches around the eyes and head.
Dogo Guatelmateco was meant to be a guard dog, but because of its fierce origin, it is better known as a fighting dog today. It makes for an affectionate, loyal and devoted home companion. The ferocity and tenacity of this dog is enough to keep intruders away. However, it is perfectly calm and controlled in domestic surroundings. Dogo Guatelmateco is a people’s dog, loves kids, and if trained well, can make for a great house pet. However, you need to be firm with the dog, because of its domineering temperament. It can be friendly with other canine companions and even visitors, if trained to do so. This breed of dogs isn’t very active, but won’t mind playing with you and even accompanying you on long walks. It makes an excellent guardian too.
Although Dogo Guatelmateco is generally free of many disabling genetic diseases, it is prone to deafness, lameness and even skin allergies.
Dogo Guatelmateco needs very little maintenance. Because of its short coat, occasional brushing would do. Also, everyday bathing is not required, though regular ear and oral cleaning will help.