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Canis Panther

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 Canis Panther

The Canis Panther was bred first in 1970 and while some claim it is still a mixed breed in fact most research has concluded it can now be classed as purebred. It is an American bred dog that is intelligent, easy to train and extremely loyal and protective. In dog events it does well in guarding, obedience and agility. With the right home and with good socialization and training it can also make a fine family dog or be a companion to a single or couple owner. It has a life span of 10 to 11 years but has yet to be recognized by any major dog kennel club.

The Canis Panther at A Glance
Name Canis Panther
Other names None
Nicknames None
Origin USA
Average size Large to giant
Average weight 85 to 140 pounds
Average height 24 to 30 inches
Life span 10 to 11 years
Coat type Short and close
Hypoallergenic No
Color Black, Chocolate, Fawn, Blue, Grey
Popularity Not a registered member of the AKC
Intelligence High – this is a very smart dog
Tolerance to heat Good to very good – can handle almost anything other than extreme heat
Tolerance to cold Low – does not do well in the cold, will need more care
Shedding Low - a small amount of hair will be in the home but not a lot
Drooling Average – some drool when drinking but it is not a big slobbery breed
Obesity Average - measure its food and make sure it is well exercised
Grooming/brushing Low to average – brush once or twice a week
Barking Rare – does not bark unless it has something to warn about
Exercise needs Above average – owners who are somewhat active are needed
Trainability Easy for those with experience
Friendliness Low – suspicious of stranger due to being bred for gardening
Good first dog No – this should only be homed by owners with experience
Good family pet Good to very good – requires socialization
Good with children Good – requires socialization, does better when raised with them
Good with other dogs Average– does not do well with dogs of the same sex, requires socialization
Good with other pets Moderate to average – requires socialization and proper introduction to other animals
Good with strangers No – due to being bred as a guard/protector dog, socialize and supervise and train
Good apartment dog Good if it gets enough walks and exercise outside but best in a home with a yard
Handles alone time well Moderate – not for long periods
Health issues Not a lot is known about specific issues to this breed, but usual dog issues to be aware of include hip dysplasia, ear infections, bloat and eye problems
Medical expenses $485 a year for basic health care and pet insurance
Food expenses $435 a year for a good quality dry dog food and dog treats
Miscellaneous expenses $245 a year for toys, basic training, miscellaneous items and license
Average annual expenses $1410 a year as a starting figure
Cost to purchase $1,000
Rescue organizations None breed specific, check local rescues and shelters
Biting Statistics None reported

The Canis Panther's Beginnings

The Canis Panther was developed crossing the Doberman Pinscher, American Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Black Labrador Retriever and the Great Dane in the 1970s in the US by Mr Stratten, Jones and Lopez. The three men were personal dog trainers who lived in the inner city and felt there were not decently bred and trained dogs for protection purposes. The kind of dog they wanted to develop were influenced by dogs in Germany. For many years it was viewed as a mixed breed and in fact some still see it as one, though some researchers have suggested that at this point, nearly 50 years later, it can be considered a new breed.

It was bred to be a protector, used as personal guard dogs and as family guard dogs. As well as being developed to be very protective it was also intelligent, agile and very attractive and strong. Docking the tail, removing the back dewclaws and cropping ears was and is still common. The name Canis Panther was influenced by its sleek lines and also the desire to have a name that was intimidating. It is not named thus because it hunts panthers.

New Lease on Life

There are now some bloodlines that are established with multi-generational pedigrees. It still has mixed onions about its status and is not recognized by any major kennel club as of yet. It is not a common dog even in the US where it is mostly bred. While the inclusion of the Great Dane and the Lab in its beginnings has meant some working dog fanciers have not been as welcoming of this dog, personal protection enthusiasts have welcomed it.

The Dog You See Today

The Canis Panther is a large to giant dog weighing 85 to 140 pounds and standing 24 to 30 inches tall. Males tend to be a fair bit larger than females. It is a lean, muscled, strong and powerful dog with usually a docked tail, dewclaws removed and a wide chest. The tail if left natural is long. The docking and cropping is all cosmetic, designed to make the dog appear more ferocious. Its coat is close and short and common colors are solid and include black, browns and greys. Some can have a small amount of white on the belly and/or chest. The black and tan look can sometimes appear in some dogs from the Doberman in it. Its head tends to be more elegant than blocky and when its ears are not cropped and are left natural they are floppy. It has a fairly long muzzle that tapers a little to wide and powerful jaws and a large black nose.

The Inner Canis Panther


This is a loving and sensitive dog with its family when raised properly. It is alert, very loyal, intelligent and protective making it a great watchdog and guard dog. It is courageous and bold when it needs to be to defend its territory and its family. Early socialization is essential to make sure its protective and territorial defensive instincts do not lead it to go too far. It is very wary of strangers and will need proper introductions and supervision with new visitors.

This is not a dog for new owners it needs firm and experienced handling. It is important it knows it is not the pack leader and that you are. Without that in place it can be more aggressive, suspicious and stubborn making it hard to live with. It forms very strong bonds with its owners which is what makes them so good as protection dogs, it will literally do whatever it can to protect you. With good socialization it is a friendly dog once it knows there are no threats around, and get along well with people.

Living with a Canis Panther

What will training look like?


It is very intelligent dog and really if you have experience and are a firm and confident leader training will be an easy process. However there seems to be a mix of reports some saying it is a dominant dog and some saying it is submissive. The former means for anyone inexperienced training will be hard as it will sense you are not sure about being the boss. Be gentle, patient and positive but still be assertive and consistent about the rules. Make sure that it is also well socialized and that this is started from a young age. It is done by introducing it to different places, people, animals, sounds and situations and teaching it what the appropriate responses are.

How active is the Canis Panther?

The Canis Panther is a very active dog so needs active owners so everyone is happy with the amount of outdoor time it needs. It can adapt to apartment living but does best with space and a large yard to explore and play in. It enjoys playing doggy sports too as well as time for safe off leash running along with the couple of long walks a day. They can require anything from an hour to two hours day and that activity should include mental stimulation too. It is an energetic and agile dog and if not given enough to do will become hyper, bored, restless, destructive and even aggressive and hard to control.

Caring for the Canis Panther

Grooming needs

This breed is quite easy to look after, its coat being short is easy to brush, it sheds a low to average amount so some hair may be around the home. Brush them a couple of times a week and bathe just as needed, not by any too frequent set schedule. Dogs have natural oils in their coats that keep them healthy and bathing too often, or using a shampoo not designed for dogs can damage those oils leading to skin problems.

Brush its teeth two to three times a week to prevent tooth and gum disease. Only use a dog toothbrush with a dog toothpaste. Its nails will need to be clipped when they get too long, this should be done using proper dog clippers and only cutting to just before the quick of the nail. In the lower section of dog nails are blood vessels and nerves and cutting them will hurt your dog and cause bleeding. Its ears should be checked weekly for infection signs like a bad smell, irritation, redness and given a wipe clean but never insert anything into them.

Feeding Time

A dog like this will eat about 4 to 10 cups of a good quality dry dog food each day, split into at least two meals. The amount can vary somewhat because it does depend on its size, health, level of activity, age and metabolism rate. Give it water that it can access whenever it wants it and refresh it when you can.

How is the Canis Panther with children and other animals?

With socialization the Canis Panther can get along well with children, they can be friendly, affectionate, playful and protective. Things go even better when it has been raised with the children and a closer bond is formed. Make sure you also teach the children how to approach, touch and play with it in an appropriate, kind and safe way. It does have a high prey drive so does not always get along well with other pets. It can get along better with other dogs with socialization though not with strange dogs coming into its territory.

What Might Go Wrong?

Health Concerns

Being a more modern dog that has not been around for long specific health issues to this breed are not clear so far but there are some typical dog issues to watch out for such as joint dysplasia, ear infections, eye problems and bloat. It has a life span of about 10 to 11 years.

Biting Statistics

The reports of dogs attacking people and doing bodily harm over the last 35 years in Canada and the US do not mention the Canis Panther. It is a protective breed though, bred to defend its owner and territory so if there is a perceived threat it will respond with aggression. Key is to socialize and train it so that it recognizes real threats and does not over react to something other. Also important is to make sure it gets the attention and activity and stimulation it needs.

Your Pup’s Price Tag

A Canis Panther puppy will cost around $1000 though be prepared to likely have to wait as this is not a common dog, not all breeders are equal so some work should be done to find ones who know what they are doing. Avoid using backyard breeders, pet stores or puppy mills, you just never know what you are going to get and sometimes the animals are mistreated or even cruelly neglected and abused. If you are not set on a purebred and can give a home to a mixed breed an option would be to look to local shelters and rescues. While the chance of finding a puppy are less there are plenty of great dogs hoping to be given a chance and a new forever home. Adoption fees tend to be $50 to $400.


When you have settled on where you are getting your dog from and it is getting close to the time to bring it home, there are some costs on initial items you will need to cover like a crate, carrier, bowls, collar and leash and such. These will be around $200. After it is home and settle you should get it to a vet as soon as possible for a physical examination and some tests and procedures like deworming, micro chipping, shots, blood tests, spaying or neutering and such. These will cost another initial payout of about $290.

Then other costs to factor in are ones that are ongoing. When you consider things like food, health and miscellaneous costs you can expect to spend a starting figure total amount of $1410 a year. This would cover basic health costs and pet insurance for about $485 a year, a good quality dry dog food and dog treats for about $435 a year and then miscellaneous items, toys, license and basic training for another $245 a year.


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The Canis Panther, whether you agree it is a new breed or a mixed one, is a very protective, territorial dog that needs good training and socialization. It can be a good family dog in the right home but it is important it gets good and clear leadership. It is very loyal and will form very close bonds so needs proper commitment from you to honor those bonds. It also needs owners who enjoy being active.

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