How Much Does Owning A cane Corso cost? The True Cost in 2023

cost of cane corso

You’ve recently fallen in love with the Cane Corso (Italian Mastiff) and now you’re wondering … 

“how much does owning a Cane Corso cost?”

Well, we’ll get to the point right away. We’re here to tell you that the true cost of Cane Corso ownership A.K.A the Italian Mastiff is not on the cheap side. The true cost goes way beyond the simple price of buying the puppy in the first place, which in itself is fairly expensive!

In this post, we’re also going to explore the other areas (some obvious, some less so) of Cane Corso ownership. For instance, what might your annual vet bill look like? How much is food going to cost? What about training and socialisation? What about toys? Are there different options to suit different budgets? 

One thing is for certain, if you’re looking for a loyal and affectionate companion, then the cost of owning a Cane Corso is a price that’s well worth paying. Our mission here is to help give you, the owner, the necessary tools and information required to give your Cane Corso the life it deserves. No future dog owner should ever commit to ownership without knowing the full facts. And with that, we jump in.

How much is a Cane Corso puppy?

This is the most obvious place to start. You’ve done your doggy research, you’re sold on the idea of committing to a Cane Corso puppy, congratulations! 

Throughout the UK, USA and other parts of the world, the Cane Corso is a popular choice for people who are in the market for puppies. Usually this is owners who love bigger dogs like mastiffs and know what it takes to appreciate larger dogs. 

cost of cane corso puppy

The price for a Cane Corso puppy can vary significantly, however they are considered to be more on the expensive end. Prices can range from £800 to £2500 (prices may vary in the USA and other countries). As you would expect, the price increases along with the breeders reputation for purebred blood lines along with records that indicate good, healthy pups.

The variation in Cane Corso price may also be due things like: 

  • Puppies not being from registered breeders 
  • Missing kennel club registration papers
  • Pre-adoption health concerns (common checks are hips, elbows and heart)
  • Location
  • Colour of coat 
  • Lack of training or socialisation 

We recommend choosing a Cane Corso puppy from a registered breeder that has a great track record for responsible and ethical ownership. You can find a list of reputable breeders by searching for Cane Corso communities such as the Cane Corso appreciation society. Alternatively, see our top recommended UK Cane Corso breeders, here.

We also recommend staying away from generic local listing sites when looking for a puppy. Many well documented scams exist on these sites, and future owners should be wary of voting with their wallets for shady pet breeding programs. 

You can expect to spend around £3500 to £4000 in your first year of puppy ownership. This is due to things such as: 

  • Basic supplies such as food, bowls, puppy toys, etc
  • Dog beds and crates
  • Collars, leads & harnesses
  • Microchipping & ID tags
  • General puppy proofing of your house

However, that cost should fall to around £1500 for following years.  

What about adopting a rescue Cane Corsos?

Rehoming a Cane Corso (or any dog for that matter) can be a very noble pursuit. The covid pandemic led to an increase in dogs being placed in shelters across the UK and globally. Many owners got themselves into situations that they weren’t well equipped to deal with. 

Many large dog breeds such as the Italian Mastiff have an aesthetic appeal which drives popularity, however many novice dog owners have no idea what they’re committing to in the long run, which is sad and unfortunate. 

By adopting a Cane Corso, you may well be doing the dog ownership community a genuine service as well as helping to support your local dog shelter. This option may also be more budget friendly vs buying a puppy. That said, we recommend getting to know the dog first and developing a keen eye on behavioural issues and their common health concerns, again you need to know what you’re getting yourself into. 
There are many perfectly good Cane Corso dogs in shelters, please use a trusted shelter such as when looking.

How much does it cost to feed the Cane Corso?

For a dog the size of a Cane Corso, it’s reasonable to expect to pay around £50 – £70 per month. 

Food is one of the biggest areas of expense. We all love to eat and the Cane Corso is no exception, in fact this large breed loves and needs a lot of calories to thrive. You can thank its worker dog background and protein hungry physique for that. 

That said, what you feed your Cane Corso can be adapted to a degree in order to suit your budget. Many lovers of the breed are now opting for a raw dog food diet and laud its benefits for longevity, but less so its impact on your weekly food bill. However, many owners choose a combination of home cooked fresh ingredients (meat, fish and veg) alongside wet food and kibble. 

Let’s say you do go down the path of the raw dog food diet for your Cane Corso. How much would you expect to pay per year? 

credit – Instagram @nora_cane_corso

Well, that price can obviously vary somewhat. The raw dog food diet offers you flexibility in that you can pick the items out at the store, butchers or farmers yourself. This gives you the ability to opt for cheaper cuts of muscle meat, choose offal (generally cheaper) or opt for organic/non-organic. If this is for you, you may expect to spend between £200 – £300 a month feeding them. 

 However, you then have to consider the trade off with preparation times. On the other hand, many new businesses are entering this space, offering frozen or freeze dried raw dog food mixes as a subscription which can work out as cost effective and healthy. Your Cane Corso eats a lot (sometimes up to 7lbs a day of meat…). Raw won’t be cheap. 

What about for owners who choose not to go raw? It’s likely that you can make some savings if you choose to opt for alternative and more mainstream options such as wet food and kibble. Now obviously there are many factors that may affect the final cost such as brand, dog size, etc.  

How much are vet and medical costs for the Cane Corso?

Typically, the first year of Cane Corso ownership will likely rack up the veterinary bills. The first visits will cover the usual exams, alongside vaccinations, worming and microchipping (a legal requirement in the UK since 2016). Beyond that, costs may increase if you choose to go through neutering or spaying your Cane corso. All up, the initial year of Cane Corso ownership may take you to around the £1000 mark. 

In the years that follow, your Italian mastiff will require annual boosters, de-fleaing and worming, and occasional check-ups to ensure your Corso is in general overall good health. These are also worthwhile to ensure you’re staying vigilant on Cane Corso health concerns common health concern such as: 

  • Gastric bloating
  • Hip dysplasia 
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Eye abnormalities
  • Arthritis 
  • Heart conditions 

It’s true that as your Cane Corso ages out of puppyhood, your vet bills will likely be less. There are also some cost savings that can be made along the way such as at home flea and worming treatments which can save trips to the vets. 

However, owners should be prepared to cover extra expenses as the breed ages and starts to show signs of decline. The Cane Corso is a tough breed, but all that size and muscle can eventually take its toll. 

Over the course of its lifetime, we estimate the average cost of vet bills for the Cane Corso to be around £400 – £600. As mentioned, the first year is more expensive. You may also be able to reduce vet expenses by buying a respected pet insurance cover.

How much is pet insurance for the Cane Corso?

It must be stated that many pet insurance companies are not always fond of providing cover for bigger breeds that are susceptible to well known and documented health conditions. There are some that are happy to insure this breed, but it’s certainly not cheap. 

Many Pets states that the average cost to insure the Cane Corso is around £792, that’s double the national average! Some things that may affect the price are age, gender, neutered or spayed and your location.

How much is training and socialisation for the Cane Corso?

This may really depend on how experienced you are as a dog owner, and especially a dog owner of bigger mastiff breeds. Training and socialisation are areas that many normal dog owners can either learn themselves or wing it to a degree, however the Cane Corso needs good steady and consistent training and socialisation in-order to thrive. 

As we’ve mentioned in other posts, when adopting a Cane Corso into your home, you really need to know what you’re getting into and commit. Their temperament is strong-willed, confident and a desire to protect against strangers. You need to be a strong leader, otherwise they will assume command. 

The need to protect and guard their owners is extremely high in the Cane Corso breed, some owners love this, some find it can become overwhelming. The need for training and socialisation is a must. A fully social and affectionate Cane Corso is a joy to behold. 

Costings for training and socialisation do vary, sometimes to a large degree. We recommend searching your local area for classes. Expect group classes to range from £15 – £50. Some group classes aim to tackle obedience and socialisation, however private classes may exist for dogs that are more on the shy side, although these can climb up to £60-£70. 

There is no exact set amount of classes that can guarantee great obedience and socialisation skills. Many will aim to get you there in up to 10 sessions and give you the tools to bring consistency to day-to-day training. However, your dog is an individual and the end amount may end up being a bit less, or a lot more. It really depends.

What do owners often tend to overlook when buying a Cane Corso?

We’ve covered many aspects of Cane Corso ownership. There’s no doubt, owning a dog of this size and prestige will come at a cost. But what are some areas that are often overlooked? 

  1. Crate training 

Many owners love crate training their dogs. The Cane Corso, like other mastiff breeds, can be sensitive. A crate gives it a place to go when tired, nervous or stressed. A crate can also help with toilet training. We recommend going for a large crate from the get go. The breed grows quickly!

  1. Garden fencing 

This maybe seems out of place? But we recommend going for a tall and robust fence. The guard dog instincts of the Cane Corso means it is continuously on alert. Having a taller fence means it has less triggers for barking. 

  1. Puppy proofing 

General puppy proofing of your house is a good idea. This can range from puppy toilet pads, to removing anything that poses a risk when chewing such as cables. 

  1. A range of toys 

The Corso has a high prey drive and a strong bite pressure. Having a range of toys from puppy to adulthood keeps your companion mentally stimulated. This can range from soft toys (puppy) to more robust toys as it ages such as ropes. 

  1. Seasonal allergies 

Something to be aware of, although not exclusive to all Cane Corsos, is seasonal allergies. Be prepared to take the occasional visit to the vets and invest in meds if affected. This may range from dry skin, to eye infections or gastro issues.

  1. Doggy daycare 

Although this isn’t applicable to all owners. Busy owners should be aware of the Cane Corso temperament to miss its owners. With doggy daycare, your Cane Corso will pick up good socialisation skills which will also help with mental and physical exercise. Prices vary, we recommend searching local facebook groups and enquiring. 

  1. Accessories 

As enthusiastic pet owners, we love spoiling our pets with accessories (and toys). For the Cane Corso, you want to look for durable accessories such as harnesses, leashes, collars, bowls, chews, beds and bedding and whatever else. 

  1. DIY repairs 

Okay, this is more of a half joke … But be prepared to see dents and marks around the house. The Corso is a big lump of heavy muscle. This means things can get damaged. You need to be prepared to share your space with a giant. 

  1. Pet Boarding

We all like to take a break from time to time, yet we’re always left shocked at how much it costs to house your canine friend. Prices for this can vary depending on your location, service quality and the attention needed for your dog. You can expect to pay north of £150 a week for pet boarding a dog.

Why are Cane Corsos so expensive?

It’s a large dog, they require a lot of attention in the form of exercise and affection. They also require a rather large amount of food… 

The Cane Corso is desirable to many large dog lovers, its affectionate and loyal nature can make for a wonderful pet. However, the breed has a number of well documented health concerns and a shorter lifespan vs many other breeds. This makes it more expensive to insure. 

As mentioned throughout, there are many variations in costs and if you’re an experienced owner you may be better placed to take control of some of these elements yourself such as training, basic care and grooming needs, etc. 

On average, the cost of owning a Cane Corso throughout its lifetime will range from around £17,000 to £22,000. This can fluctuate depending on your monthly expenses such as doggy day-care, raw feeding, etc. In some cases, ownership can go excessively high to around £50,000 if the dog suffers from health conditions which cause vet bills to spiral.

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