Cão de Fila da Terceira

He is not recognized by the F.C.I.

Origin
Terceira Island in the Azores
Translation
Francis Vandersteen
The Terceira Mastiff (Portuguese : Cão de Fila da Terceira) is a local Portuguese dog breed, also known as the Rabo Torto (rabo = tail, torto = twisted). Neither the Fédération Cynologique Internationale nor the Local Clube Português de Canicultura have officially recognized it. It is a remarkable ancestor of the Cão Fila de São Miguel and the Fila Brasileiro. This breed is totally different from the Barbado da Terceira.

The Terceira Mastiff comes from the island of Terceira in the Azores. It is descended from local dogs, old Spanish and English mastiffs and bulldogs, the Dogue de Bordeaux and the Bloodhound. According to legend, it was once very popular with local pirates and soon became a popular fighting dog. In the 1880s, veterinarian Jose Leite Pacheco wrote the breed's first standard and wanted to make the nickname rabo torto the official name of the breed instead of cão de fila da Terceira. Unfortunately, the Terceira Mastiff was already extremely endangered by this time, which was one of the reasons why, despite the Portuguese standard, it was never accepted by the FCI.

In the 1960s, there was an attempt to revive the breed with the help of the Portuguese government. However, there was disagreement between government officials and breeders, which led to the failure of the project. After that, the future of the Terceira Mastiff depended solely on local farmers and breed enthusiasts. By the 1970s, it had already been declared extinct, although a few individuals still remain in the Azores. With these few individuals, the breed's recreation has finally begun.

The Terceira Mastiff is a medium-sized molosser that represents the Fila or Dogo type and resembles the Cão Fila de São Miguel. One of its most striking features is a naturally short, corkscrew-shaped tail. Its nose can be black, pink or even brown. The color of the short, smooth coat can be fawn or yellow, always with a light mask. Red, brindle and black individuals are generally considered impure. Height: around 55 cm.

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