cane corso eye colors

Cane Corso Eye Color – Some Interesting Finds

Cane Corso is becoming widely popular among interested dog pet owners. You could be a Cane Corso owner/ looking to adopt one. Cane Corso comes in different shades of their coat. Nevertheless, if you have paid close attention to Cane Corso, we bet you have noticed the difference in Cane Corso’s eye color. 

We are sure you are curious about it. So were we, when we noticed this difference. Therefore, we dug into finding more about the Cane Corso eye color – the whys and hows, and whens!

Read this article to find out some interesting facts and why this color change occurs in Cane Corso. 

What Color Eyes Does a Cane Corso Have?

What Color Eyes Does a Cane Corso Have
What Is the Right Shade of Eye Color for a Cane Corso

Generally, most adult Cane Corso will have brown eyes. However, the shades of brown vary among different Corso’s.

Let’s tell you one fun fact about the eye color of a Cane Corso. The color of Corso’s Coat and facial features like the rim of the eye and its nose all influence Corso’s eye color. The more significant influence, though, depends on the coat color of a Cane Corso.

It means, whatever the color of the Coat of a Cane Corso, its eye color will have a shade similar to its coat color.

Exceptions in the coat color and eye color shade theory

However, there are certain boundaries to the correlation between a Cane Corso’s Coat and its eye color –

  • The eye color, basically the color of a Cane Corso’s iris, stands closely similar to the darkest shade in a Corso’s Coat. By the “darkest shade in a Corso’s coat”, the shade/color of its mask isn’t considered.
  • Cane Corso with a lighter coat shade, will have lighter-colored eyes.
  • The eye color shades vary from light hazel to dark hazel. The lightest permissible shade of a Cane Corso is soft hazel, and the darkest shade should be dark hazel.

Some common examples are:

A black-coated Cane Corso has a dark hazel eye color, and a light fawn-coated Corsos has a light hazel eye color. 

What Is the Right Shade of Eye Color for a Cane Corso?

It follows a simple rule, the darker the eye color of a Cane Corso the better. 

And no! We aren’t simply saying that.

According to the FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale), while the color of the Iris should be as dark as possible, it should also follow the shade of its coat. 

Although, it is known that dilute-colored Cane Corsos are incapable of genetically possessing a dark eye color. 

Let’s find out which coat colors are officially recognized for Cane Corso by the FCI & AKC (American Kennel Club). We will also list out the unrecognized and diluted coat colors.

Recognized coat colors for Cane Corso:

  • Black Coat
  • Grey Coat
  • Red/Fawn Coat (with black mask)
  • Formentino coat ( with grey mask)
  • Brindle Coat
  • Chestnut Coat

Diluted/unrecognized coat colors for Cane Corso:

  • Isabella/Tawy coat
  • Chocolate/Liver coat

Eye Colors of Cane Corse According to the Recognized Coat Color

As we have stated above, the eye color of a Cane Corso has some influence over its coat color and muzzle/mask color.

It means a Cane Corso eye color is standard according to their coat color and muzzle color. 

To simplify your understanding of each coat color and its standard eye color, we have a chart for you below –

Cane Corso Coat and Muzzle ColorIdeally Accepted Cane Corso Eye Color
Solid black coat and black muzzleDark hazel brown eyes
Grey Coat and black muzzleMedium hazel brown eyes
Grey coat and gray muzzleLight hazel brown eyes
Fawn/red coat with a gray muzzleDark hazel brown eyes
Formentino coat with a gray muzzleLight hazel brown eyes
Formentino coat with gray muzzleUnique clear-like eyes
Brindle coat (black/grey brindle, Reverse black/reverse gray brindle)Light hazel brown eyes
Chestnut brindle coatLight hazel brown eyes

Unaccepted/Disqualifying Cane Corso Eye Colors

Registering your Cane Corso comes with a strict set of acceptance and disqualifying attributes. 

Since we are covering the topic of the eye color of Cane Corse, let’s delve into finding out which eye colors aren’t deemed fit for the registry. In some cases, these disqualifications also applied to breeding.

Three main reasons specific eye colors in a Cane Corso are considered a disqualification factor:

  • Indicate the presence of a faulty gene, 
  • It can be the result of an arrested development 
  • There could be a deficiency in producing a pigment responsible for giving brown shade to the eye.

Here is a list of the disqualified Cane Corso Eye colors:

  • Blue colored eyes 

Most Cane Corso puppies have blue-toned eyes, though. It, of course, over time, changes into brown. The disqualification happens when the eye color remains blue all through adulthood of the Cane Corso. 

  • Yellow-colored eyes 

A Cane Corso with yellow eyes is often compared with the yellow eyes of birds of prey.

However, the yellow color of Cane Corso’s eyes strictly adheres to the disqualification factor by the AKC.

  • Green tone hazel eyes  

The green-toned hazel eyes are only familiar in Cane Corsos with the Isabella/tawny Coat and Chocolate/liver coat. 

As much as these color coats are attractive to new dog owners, it is considered a fault by several prominent kennel organizations. In addition, the rule of thumb for a Cane Corso eye color is that the darker it is, the better it is. 

Important note: In most cases of dilute Cane Corso puppies, their eyes can have a blue shade. This blue coloration, with exposure to sunlight over time, will naturally change to brown. Always remember, it is safe as long as the blue eye is only on your Corso as a puppy.

Yellow Eyes of Cane Corso Help Them See Better in the Dark – Fact or Myth?

There is a famous thought you’d find on the internet about how the yellow eyes of Cane Corso enhance their night vision. 

Well, let’s debunk that myth for you today. The yellow eyes of a Cane Corso have no contribution in helping them see better in the dark. 

It is just an assumption that arose from the notion that the “birds of prey” have yellow/light eyes. This belief picked up popularity amongst people, and now people have assumed the same for Cane Corsos with yellow eyes.

However, there is no link between the color of the iris and better night vision. Nevertheless, there are species of animals with dark irises that are excellent nocturnal predators.  

One reason for the escalated belief could be the presence of a layer of tissues called the tapetum lucidum. These tissues’ primary role is to reflect light passing through the retina. It, in turn, helps in enhanced vision at night. Hence, when light is shone on a dog’s eye, irrespective of its eye color, it makes it look like it’s phosphorescent. 

But, setting the records straight, yellow eye color in a Cane Corso is amongst the top disqualifying factors for accepted standards for a Corso breed.

What Color Does a Cane Corso Puppy Possess?

Cane Corso puppies have a blue shade in their eyes. It is important to note that the blue hue in a Cane Corso will remain up until 3 to 4 weeks. 

After 3 /4 weeks, with exposure to sunlight, the Iris gets darker and turns into brown hazel shades.

Does the Eye Color of a Cane Corso Change During the Transition From Puppy to Adulthood?

The answer is “Yes.” The eye color of a Cane Corso puppy is blue from its birth up until 3 to 4 weeks, after which it grows darker and turns brown during adulthood.

You may wonder about the reason for this color change. Let us assure you that it is a natural process and there is nothing to worry about it. 

That said, if your Cane Corso’s eye color remains blue after the fourth week, it might indicate an underlying health problem. Also, in some rare cases, the Cane Corso retains its blue eye color all through its lifetime due to poor melanin production.

Are you wondering if this color change is seen only in Cane Corsos? No. It is, in fact, a widespread occurrence among dog breeds to change eye color during their early growing stages.

Little tip – 

Cane Corso puppies with blue eyes look adorable. It’ll be good if you can document and take pictures of your puppy Corso and keep them for memories. Because eventually, as it grows up, it’ll lose its blue shade. And mind you! Cane Corsos are photogenic!

Timeline of Cane Corso’s Eye Color Change

If you are an attentive dog parent, keeping a close check on your pet and noticing the color change of your Cane Corso may alarm or freak you out.

To help you understand better the color change, we have prepared a brief timeline of a Cane Corso eye color change –

  • Week 1 Cane Corso puppy – Cane Corso puppies won’t open their eyes until two weeks old. So we cannot say much about its eye color.
  • Week 2 Cane Corso puppy – Towards the end of the second week after their birth, Corso puppies slowly open their eyes. The eye color will exhibit a cloudish blue hue.  
  • Week 3 Cane Corso puppy – During the third week, the Corso puppies, the cloudiness of the eye will slowly start clearing out. 
  • Week 4 Cane Corso puppy – By the fourth week, you’ll get to see a clear and distinct blue hue in your Corso’s eye. 
  • Week 5 – week 6 Cane Corso puppy – Corso puppy’s blue hue eye color will slowly see some changes. It will start clearing out and gradually pick up with the intensification of the shade into darker hues. It happens because of exposure to sunlight, causing more melanin production. 
  • Week 6 onwards till adulthood – Slowly, the brown shade intensifies into darker brown shades. It, of course, depends on their color code too. The shade of the eye color, either a darker/lighter shade of brown, is given in the table above. 

Note –

You will witness the whole color transition if you take care of newborn puppies from your Cane Corso dog pets. However, if you are adopting a Corso from a breeder, you may not get a chance to see the blue eye color. That is because breeders don’t give up puppies for adoption until they are four weeks old.

The Reasons Behind the Phenomenon of Eye Color Change in a Cane Corso

Before we get started, here’s one quick fact – the actual color of the eye is determined by the pigmentation of the Iris. Iris is the circular structure that envelops the pupil (the black spot in the eye). 

While it might sound surprising to you, color change in dog puppies during their transition into adulthood is a standard occurrence.

With Cane Corso’s, the change is seen as rather drastic as it shifts from blue to brown. 

Let us give you brief highlights of why this happens:

  • Puppy Cane Corsos tend to keep their eyes closed for about two weeks. During this time, they crawl onto their mother for milk instinctively. It is only towards the third week that they start seeing with their eyes, which remain cloudy. With lower exposure to sunlight, melanin production is less. It results in the pure blue shade in the Iris of a Cane Corso puppy, as it lacks melanin at this stage.
  • When it starts to use its eye, it is exposed to sunlight and other lighting elements. It allows for more melanin production. Melanin’s key role is to trap light rays and protect the eye from harmful radiation effects. As a Cane Corso gets older, melanin production and concentration increase around the Iris, giving it dark brown shades.

Cane Corso Eye Color – Final Thoughts

cane corso eye colors

If you are a new dog parent, even the slightest transition or changes can freak you out. And when it comes to the color change of the eye, it can cause significant concerns. Now that you know that slight transitions are expected, you can go about worrying less. 

It is important to remember that for Cane Corso, the darker the shade (hazel brown), the more it is accepted as a qualified breed for registration. 

And while the blue/yellow eyes can be attractive, these colors are disqualified by the top kennel clubs and organizations. 

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