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11 Rare & Common Cane Corso Colors (Complete 2023 List)

Cane Corso Colors

Cane Corso’s famous for their various coats.

As if their doggy printer has other colors besides the usual black, red, and white.

So if you’re planning to adopt a pup…

Or trying to figure out your dog’s color…

I made a complete list you can use as a reference.

Continue reading to discover:

  • 4 rarest coat colors of Cane Corsos.
  • What Cane Corso color lives the longest.
  • 7 common colors of Cane Corso approved by kennel clubs.
  • And many more…

How many colors does Cane Corso have?

Cane Corso has 11 coat colors in total. However, the American Kennel Club, a.k.a. AKC, only approves 7 of them. These are black, gray, fawn, red, black brindle, gray brindle, and chestnut brindle. So, the other 4 are rare colors, such as straw, chocolate or liver, Isabella or tawny, and Formentino.

And you’ll find them in a chart after this section.

Now, dogs generally come in 4 coat colors:

  • Red.
  • Black.
  • White.
  • Brown.

So you may wonder…

Why does Cane Corso have many colors?

According to vets, 2 types of pigments affect a puppy’s coat.

And these are the following:

Pigment typeDefault colorPossible coat colors
EumelaninBlackBlack, gray, bluish gray, muted brown
PheomelaninReddish-yellowOrange, cream, tan

As you can see, each pigment has a default or standard color.

But then, it may or may not change depending on their parents’ genes.

For example, the black color might stay the same or turn gray. 

Or, the reddish-yellow might produce cream and tan shades.

Now, aside from a dog’s fur color…

These 2 pigments affect specific body parts as well.

The eumelanin can also change the color of a Cane Corso’s eyes and nose.

Meanwhile, pheomelanin only affects the dog’s coat.

“What about the genes responsible for this?”

Based on a study, 3 genes control the switching of coat colors in dogs.

Experts say canines have around 19,000 DNA.

So only a few genes play a role in your Fido’s fur color. And they’re as follows:

Pigment type-switching genesWhat it does
Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R)Changes the distribution of black pigment.
Agouti signaling protein (ASIP)Promotes the production of red and yellow colors.
β–Defensin 103 (CBD103)Boosts the making of black pigment.

From the table above, a Cane Corso’s coat depends on how these 3 genes interact.

Each of them dictates the amount of color produced.

That’s why you could think of many possible combinations.

And it makes dogs like Cane Corsos have many interesting colors.

So let’s dive right into the different Cane Corso coats you should know.

Cane Corso colors chart (rare & common colors)

For your ease of reference, I divided them into 2 groups:

Common colorsRare colors
Black Brindle
Gray Brindle
Chestnut Brindle

#1: Black

This is the most common color of Cane Corso.

A study says there’s a 71.6% chance of getting this if you breed 2 black dogs of this kind.

Thus, it’s a coat you’ll often see.

Black Cane Corsos have shiny solid black fur all over their bodies. And they have no specks of other shades.

“Is this approved by kennel clubs?”

The American Kennel Club, a.k.a. AKC, only acknowledges 7 colors of Cane Corsos.

And black’s one of them – with a registration code of 007.

Now, with their solid dark coat and large, sturdy bodies…

Black Cane Corsos might look intimidating. Which also makes them a popular choice as guard dogs.

You might also like: 17 Dogs That Look Exactly Like Rottweilers

#2: Fawn

Fawn Cane Corso

This Cane Corse color usually varies from cream to tan. 

And Fidos of this kind also have black fur on their muzzle – like a mask.

“So, what caused this lighter shade on Cane Corso?”

One research found that this fawn color’s due to the ‘Agouti locus.’

It’s a gene that controls the amount of pigment in a mammal’s coat.

So since fawn has a light brown shade…

The reddish yellow tint, a.k.a. pheomelanin, is more dominant here than the black one – eumelanin.

“Is this a common color?”

Based on the same study earlier…

There’s an 84.5% odds that 2 fawn parents will have cream or tan-colored puppies too.

So it’s a common color, like black Cane Corsos.

#3: Gray

This is also a result of breeding 2 parents of the same coat – which is gray in this case.

However, some breeders may confuse you by referring to this color as blue.

“So, how do Cane Corsos have gray fur?”

Apart from the 3 genes I mentioned before…

There are 8 more that affect a dog’s color.

I won’t mention each of them here. But I’ll discuss one – the diluted D-gene (dd)’

As its name implies, experts say it’s a part of the DNA that dilutes or lightens pigments.

And that’s why the black becomes pale or bluish. Resulting in a gray Cane Corso.

#4: Gray Brindle

These Fidos also come in patchy or ‘tiger-striped’ patterns.

It’s called a ‘brindle.’ And it varies in color depending on the dominant gene.

In this case, the dog has a brown base coat.

Then they have grayish or bluish streaks over it.

And this is usually the work of the ‘K locus.’

Or a DNA region in dogs that’s responsible for the following colors:

  • Fawn.
  • Black.
  • Brindle.

#5: Red

Some people often mistake this for fawn Cane Corsos.

Well. It’s understandable, as both dogs have black masks on their snouts.

Plus, they have brownish shades too.

But red Cane Corsos have a darker and more vibrant coat than fawn.

Now, why’s that?

Besides the pheomelanin or reddish yellow pigment…

Genes also decide how strong a dog’s color is.

So for red and fawn Cane Corsos, it’s usually the job of ‘E (extension) locus.’

And it’s also responsible for the Fidos’ black masks.

Hence, both red and fawn Cane Corsos have the same facial feature.

Trivia: In humans, pheomelanin’s the one that causes freckles. Based on doctors, you’ll see this more in people with light-colored eyes and skin. As well as those with blonde, light brown, or red hair.

#6: Black Brindle

Unlike the Gray Brindle Cane Corsos…

These dogs have black stripes over a reddish or brown base.

Hence, the name.

So remember, the brindle type depends on the streaks’ color – not the base.

Now, is this common?

It’s a usual color in Cane Corsos.

Also, even though a brindle may look out of the ordinary…

This coat’s normal. And the dog doesn’t have any abnormalities in their genes.

In fact, a study suggests that Black Brindle Cane Corsos live the longest in this breed.

How did they find it out?”

The researchers gathered data from 232 deceased Cane Corsos.

Then after analyzing it…

They found that the average lifespan of the breed’s 9.29 years.

And among the dog colors…

Black Brindle Cane Corsos lived the longest. With an average record of 10.30 years.

#7: Chestnut Brindle

This isn’t a rare Cane Corso color.

But it’s more uncommon than gray and black brindle.

Fidos of this kind have reddish-brown streaks. With a red or brown-colored coat base.

And Chestnut Brindle’s the 7th or last color recognized by the AKC.

So the rest you’ll see below are rare. Or the ones that breeders often sell at a higher price.

But let me remind you.

These colors are a product of unusual breeding.

It’s mainly focused on the dog’s coat and looks, not their health.

Thus, kennel clubs don’t acknowledge them.

#8: Straw

Let’s start with the rarest Cane Corso color.

Some people also call this coat ‘paglia.’

It’s the Italian term for ‘straw.’

And it perfectly describes this coat’s interesting color. Which is pale cream or dirty white.

So you’ll only find a few of them in the world.

Yup, that’s how uncommon straw Cane Corsos are.

And one of those is an adorable Fido named ‘Ghost’ – which is fitting to the dog’s unreal color:

Compared to fawn…

Straw Cane Corsos have a lighter overcoat. And it’s almost close to a white color.

But if you look closely at their back and shoulders, you may notice some dark spots. Either in gray or black.

Plus, most of them have light-colored eyes too. Which is something you won’t see in a common Cane Corso color.

#9: Chocolate/Liver

These dogs have a solid ‘chocolatey’ (or liver for some) base color. 

So it’s like the brown version of a black Cane Corso.

But the difference is they have a pinkish tone around their eyes and nose.

Also, kennel clubs require black Cane Corsos to have dark brown eyes.

Meanwhile, Fidos with chocolate coats usually have green hazel ones. 

And this makes them look more striking than the rest.

#10: Isabella

This next rare color’s also known as ‘tawny.’

It’s a paler version of a chocolate or liver Cane Corso.

Thus, it’s a result of a dilute gene or the DNA that makes the pigment lighter.

So these dogs may have a coat that’s either:

  • Light fawn.
  • Pale grayish yellow.

Now, like dogs with chocolate color, most Isabella Cane Corsos also have:

  • Green hazel eyes.
  • Pinkish eyelids and skin around the nose.

#11: Formentino

Lastly, in Italian, its name literally means ‘fermented wheat.’

And it’s because it has a similar color. Like a washed-out fawn Cane Corso.

But unlike chocolate and Isabella…

These dogs’ noses have a grayish or bluish color.

Plus, they have unusual light-colored eyes too.

If you want to know more, read this article:  11 Surprising Facts About Formentino Cane Corsos

What is the rarest Cane Corso color?

The rarest Cane Corso color is straw. It’s a paler shade of cream, which almost looks like white. And dogs with this coat have unique light-colored eyes too.

Now, despite their rare color, kennel clubs don’t accept them.

It’s a product of a diluted gene that makes their coat paler. Thus, they don’t fit the standards of natural breeding.

But still, straw Cane Corsos are overpriced.

And they may come with medical problems too.

Vets say dogs with light-colored coats are prone to alopecia or abnormal hair loss. Say pale gray or fawn.

Also, there are only 7 common colors of Cane Corsos.

So to produce rare ones…

Some breeders may disregard the dog’s condition.

And this makes the puppies prone to health problems, like:

  • Deafness.
  • Skin diseases.
  • Ear infections.
  • Eye deformities.

Is there a blue Cane Corso?

There’s no blue Cane Corso. Some breeders use this to refer to the color gray. Especially when it’s a diluted or a paler version since it has a bluish tone.

Also, there’s no blue Cane Corsos in the list of recognized colors by the AKC.

So technically, it doesn’t exist.