The origins of the cimarron uruguayo dog breed are very uncertain. Some think that they arrived in Uruguay, which is their country of origin, brought by the Spanish and Portuguese and crossed with working molossi and hunting dogs. Others believe that they derive from various crosses with indigenous breeds in the area.
Its name literally means Uruguayan wild dog and in Uruguay it is the only recognised native breed. These dogs were later abandoned and adapted perfectly to life in the wild, only for them to become too numerous and cause major problems by attacking pastures for food. At the end of the eighteenth century, the authorities even put a price on their killing, but some farmers captured several specimens and trained them again, achieving excellent results as guard dogs and livestock dogs, especially cattle. From these dogs derives the current Uruguayan cimarron, which probably, as mentioned earlier, was crossed with some molossoid.
These dogs were used for hunting, herding and guiding livestock. Today they are used as guard dogs, protection dogs and companion dogs. Also called perro cimarrón, cimarron, perro gaucho and perro criollo, it is a breed that was recognised by the International Cinological Federation (F.C.I.) in 2006 and assigned to Group 2 (Pinscher and schnauzer type dogs, molossoids and Swiss bovines).
Due to its great courage, the Cimarron uruguayo has become the official mascot of the Uruguayan army.
Character of the Cimarron Uruguayan dog breed
Despite its intimidating physique, the Cimarron Uruguayo has a very balanced and lovable character. It is very attached to its family, especially to its owner, whom it sees as the “leader of the pack” and who must be defended against everything and everyone, even at the cost of his life. It is also intelligent and has great courage. It uses its extraordinary strength and courage to protect its loved ones, not to attack. It is not a dog known for its affections, and is particularly suspicious and even aggressive towards strangers.
It is an excellent working dog, guardian of herds and a dog for the defence of both home and person, but it is also an excellent hunting dog, especially for wild boar. This dog is not suitable for living in a flat or enclosed in a house, and before taking one it is advisable to be sure that the space available to it is suitable for its species. It needs to be in the open air a lot, the ideal would be a house with a garden, maybe in the countryside, where it can run free.
It is patient and calm with children, but it is advisable to always have the supervision of an adult with them. With other animals he can live peacefully, especially with cats if socialised from a young age. With other dogs he needs good training.
A special mention to its training. It is not a dog recommended for those who are not experts in dogs of this kind. It is a breed that tends to be dominant and is therefore particularly demanding. If bred and trained incorrectly, these dogs can develop aggression. It is therefore necessary for the owners of these dogs to establish and maintain a dominant position from day one. The ideal owner for this dog must have a strong character, but must also be affectionate and find the right measure to have a trusting relationship with the dog. No egginess, but not too affable either, to prevent the dog from taking control.
It is not suitable for elderly people unless they are hunters and live in the countryside or woods.
Appearance of the Cimarron Uruguayan dog breed
The Cimarron Uruguayo is a medium-sized dog with the appearance of a Molossoid. It has a strong build, is massive with a compact bone structure, but is very agile and light in movement. The height at the withers is about 58-61 centimetres and the maximum weight is 45 kilograms, the female usually a little less. It possesses great strength and a respectable skeleton.
The legs are straight, of medium length, entirely covered by muscles, more evident in the hindquarters. The tail is broad at the root, of medium length and is carried low; when the dog is alert it is raised to form a horizontal line with the torso or slightly higher. Its preferred gait is the walk, very elastic.
The muzzle of the Cimarron is broad and the head is very large, in proportion to the rest of the body. The eyes are almond-shaped, of a shade tending to brown which varies with the colour of the coat, and are of medium size. The gaze denotes curiosity and intelligence. The truffle is always black. What strikes are the jaws, very pronounced, suggesting the steely bite they have in reality. The ears are medium-large, triangular in shape and drooping along the cheeks. They can be cut round, similar to those of the puma. However, there are many countries where this practice is fortunately prohibited.
The coat is short, smooth and has a dense undercoat. The colour of the coat can be tiger or fawn with light or dark shades. In some specimens we can also find the mask and white spots on certain parts of the body, such as on the lower jaw, or on the chest or belly.
Health and care of the Cimarron Uruguayan dog breed
The Cimarron is a rustic and robust dog and is not predisposed to any particular diseases, indeed there is no known pathology, it may suffer like most dogs from hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism and stomach twisting, although the cases are very rare. One must be aware, however, that this is a working dog and its metabolic drive is geared towards being active all day long. If it is not exercised and active enough or is overfed it is prone to gaining weight and being obese. Its life expectancy ranges from 10 to 14 years.
As far as coat care is concerned, brushing once a week is sufficient. If the dog is outdoors a lot, perhaps in the fields or woods, it is a good idea to check its eyes, ears, coat and paws every time it comes home. In this way you can be sure that parasites or insects do not lurk undisturbed.