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Alano Espaol

Other name: Tambin llamado, Chato de Presa, Chato Salmantino, Perro de Toro, Perro de Presa Espaol, Dogo de Burgos, Mastn de Jabalines, Alano de Carnicero, Mastn de Pelo Corto. Country/region of origin: Spain. Date of origin: 5th century ? Present situation: Under recovery.

HEIGHT AND WEIGHT: 58-63 cm (23-25in) 30-40 kg (5 to 6 stone). GENERAL DESCRIPTION: Long molosser of a straight profile, rustic and well proportioned. Mainly functional animal showing a runner's structure with a great agility, speed and resistance on the run, his movements are elastic and recall those of felines. His head is brachycephallic, of square shape, with a wide and strong cranium and a very well marked stop. The muzzle is short, wide and deep. His bite is very strong and firm. Temperamentally serious and very well balanced. ORIGINS: Original to the Iberian Peninsula, references of its existence are known from the Fourteenth Century. Probably a descendant from the molossers brought into Spain by the Alans at the time of the fall of the Roman Empire. TEMPERAMENT AND FUNCTIONALITY: Traditionally, the Spanish Alano has been used in three basic functions: 1) Wild cattle herding, and bull fighting. 2) Big game hunting (Boar, Wolf, Lynx, Bear) 3) Guard and defense In all of these disciplines, the Spanish Alano counts on his most notorious characteristic, its strong bite, which has been famous since ancient times. The Spanish Alano bites with its whole mouth, even with its molars. Its bite is fixed very firmly and is held for a long time. Adults have a good temperament with owners and family, but can be very distrustful of strangers. This makes them excellent guard and defence dogs. The bite on wild or half wild animals is focused on selected areas, like ears, neck and snout (the snout especially when hunting). Until two years old the dog can be insecure and it is not advisable to force his temperament. When maturity is reached, he won't be afraid of anything, reacting with self security if menaced.

The Alano have a long history in Spain. The official history of the breed tells that the Alano came to the Iberian Peninsula in the 5th century together with the Alani tribe, and should thereby be regarded as the direct descendant of the Alaunt. As in all histories of the origin of the different ancient Molosser breeds their origin lays hidden in the mist of time, and the different theories about the origins have been presented by modern scholars. Nevertheless, the present of the Alano in Spain can be traced far back in time. As early as the year 1350 King Alfonso XI published his "Book of Hunting", and in the 15th century "Treatise of Hunting", author unknown, there is a detailed physical description of the dog. The Alano have never been a subject of beauty contests, like many other dogbreeds, but have always been bred with working qualities in mind. And it was this that saved the breed from extinction, as farmers kept them for use doing the things they have always done well.