why does my Cane Corso growl at me

Why does my Cane Corso growl at me?

When your Cane Corso growls at you, it is not a “good” sign but a warning. But what exactly the growling means, whether you have already overlooked something, and whether you should stop it, we discuss in this article.

Cane Corsos growl as a warning. They want to keep something or someone at a distance and show him by growling, “go away, do not come closer.” However, body language signals have been ignored or not recognized before. Reasons for growling can be too little workload, stress, or resource management.

Is it okay if your Cane Corso growls at you?

First, we must discuss why Cane Corsos, or dogs, growl. Growling, just like barking, is a form of communication. So it is perfectly normal for your Cane Corso to growl at you in specific situations.

By growling, your dog wants to warn and keep you at a distance. He shows you that he wants to be left alone because he is in an unpleasant situation. This behavior is positive because he warns you and does not react directly.

Of course, Cane Corsos are allowed to growl at you for various reasons so that it does not escalate. You don’t know why he is growling at that moment, but he is showing you “stop” and don’t come closer.

If you want to be left alone because you might feel bad, you can say it before it escalates. Cane Corsos do this, too, through body language and growling.

If your Cane Corso does not growl at you, that is, does not warn you, there is a possibility that he will react directly by snapping or biting.

So it is not advisable to stop your dog from growling, but first of all, pay attention to the body language signals sent before the growl and then analyze the situations in which he growls at you and, if necessary, work on it.

It is important to know the reason why a dog does what it does and not only to fight the symptom.

Pay attention to body language signs from your Cane Corso!

Before your Cane Corso growls at you, he shows body language that he wants to be left alone, feels uncomfortable and does not want a conflict. If you ignore or do not recognize these signals, growling is the way to express his mood so that it does not conflict.

Before your Cane Corso growls at you, he usually shows calming signals first. Through these signals, he wants to show you that he is uncomfortable:

  • He licks his muzzle
  • Your dog squints his eyes
  • He starts to smack his lips
  • Yawning is a common signal from dogs.
  • he averts his eyes and lowers his head
  • he generally turns away

Dogs communicate body language in addition to barking and growling. But if we do not notice and recognize these signs and signals, they are forced to take the next step of communication.

Reasons why your Cane Corso growls at you!

We already know that growling is a natural defensive behavior of Cane Corsos and other dogs and serves as a warning signal because body language signals already sent were ignored or not recognized.

Now we’ll look at why your dog growls at you and whether you can work on it so that it doesn’t happen. Let’s face it, being growled at by a large Cane Corso is not so pleasant:

Resource Defense

Your Cane Corso growls at you because he wants to keep something important to him. This can be a great toy, food, or place to lie down.


Stress can be a trigger for your Cane Corso to growl at you. Stress is not good at first. Too much stress, in the long run, weakens the immune system and makes you more susceptible to illness. Too much stress can negatively affect the life span of your Cane Corso.

Stress can occur due to several factors. If your dog does not get enough exercise, it can cause stress in the long run because he is bored.

But also, if your Cane Corso has to stay alone for a long time, this can be too much stress, and he growls.


If your dog has injured himself playing or has a painful disease, he may growl at you when you touch or stroke him. This is his way of showing you, “don’t do that – I don’t like it.” If your Cane Corso is limping, it is an obvious sign that something is wrong.

Dogs want rest

Dogs sleep or rest much of the day. However, if you constantly encourage him to play, exercise, and go for walks, he may want to show you by growling that he wants his rest.

He is tired and wants to rest.


Your Cane Corso is scared and growls. Certain situations, such as a vacuum cleaner, can make your dog afraid and shows this by growling.

Why do Cane Corsos growl

Tips so that your Cane Corso does not growl at you!

To prevent your cane Corso from growling at you, you can work on specific situations.


You are the pack leader (at least you should be) and manage the resources. You decide about food and toys but also about space and movement. If your Cane Corso growls at you when you want to take his toy away, it is not okay, in my opinion.

If your Cane Corso is well trained and oriented to you because you give him security, this will not happen. However, if your dog does not accept you as the pack’s leader, he may make decisions on his own and not follow your lead.

Work urgently on training and education and your position. You will not succeed through harshness but through loving but consistent action from the beginning and in every situation. If you are unsure, an online dog training* or a personal dog trainer can help you.

Sufficient exercise

Every dog needs a certain amount of exercise and activity to be happy. If you don’t manage to take him for a walk one day, it’s not a tragedy.

But in the long run, you should ensure that your Cane Corso has enough exercise and mental activity and is happy.


If your Cane Corso growls out of fear, you should very slowly get him used to things like vacuum cleaners, strangers, or whatever scares him.

Rule out illnesses and injuries

Take your Cane Corso to the vet if you feel that he is growling because he is in pain. Have him checked out properly and get the growling under control.

Give your Cane Corso a retreat.

Of course, it is not okay if your Cane Corso growls at you or your children.

Dogs need a lot of sleep. This serves the recovery and regeneration. But especially children have to learn that dogs also want to be left alone.

But if your Cane Corso is constantly “kept awake” and animated to play, it is stressful in the long run, and he can react irritably, for example, with “growling.”

Ask yourself how you react to others when you are tired but they don’t let you sleep or rest.

Avoid stress

Avoid stressful situations if possible and accustom your dog to such situations from the beginning. Your dog should learn relatively quickly that he also sometimes must stay alone.

Cane Corso while Training
Broholmer and Cane Corso, while training / Impulse Control

Frustration tolerance/impulse control

Besides good training and socialization, the most important thing is that your dog learns to deal with frustration.

Dogs have exposed to situations every day that stress and frustrate them. If your Cane Corso has not learned how to deal with frustration, he may overreact in certain situations, such as growling or biting.

A little exercise I did today rather accidentally with Malou our Cane Corso is the following:

Malou loves food and is really greedy. I prepared her food and she was already wild about it. So I created the expectation “there is food now” in her.

However, I put the food bowl away again and left the kitchen. I have not fulfilled her expectation and that creates frustration in the moment that she must process.

After 20 minutes I went back to the kitchen and gave her the food.

You can easily incorporate these and many other small exercises in everyday life and teach your Cane Corso to deal with frustration.

But if you want to know more about this topic, I recommend online dog training* or an experienced dog trainer.

Other interesting articles:

Conclusion: Why your Cane Corso growls at you!

The reasons why your Cane Corso growls at you can be manifold. But they all have one thing in common. Your dog wants to tell you that you should not come closer or leave him alone.

@ arrow_smith2-depositphotos.com (Contributing image)

I am Marco with my Cane Corso and my Broholmer


I am Marco, and I am very lucky to live with 3 big Mastiff-type dogs. In this blog, I want to share all my experiences and knowledge about dogs.

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