The fila brasileiro, also called the Brazilian mastiff, cao de fila or Brazilian molosser, is a large-breed dog. It is registered with some dog clubs, including the European kennel club F.C.I. (Federation Cynologique Internationale), but not with the American Kennel Club.
Developed in Brazil from several breeds including bulldogs, English mastiffs and bloodhounds, fila brasileiro were plantation, hunting and livestock farm dogs.
The breed split into two registries in the 1970s. One registry, CBKC (Brazilian Kennel Club), required dogs to come from those registered at the time the studbook closed to new entries. The other club, CAFIB (Club for the Betterment of the Fila Brasileiro), allowed the registry of new dogs if their looks fit the standard.
Fila males weigh around 140 pounds and females weigh around 115 pounds, according to the Fila Brasileiro Club of America (FBCA).
Filas' health issues include hip and elbow dysplasia, bloat and entropion (a rolling-in of the eyelid that causes eye lashes to rub on and injure the eye). Filas in the United States have an average lifespan of 7 to 9 years, according to FBCA.
A fila is supposed to be obedient to its family but wary of strangers, according to the Fila Brasileiro Association, Inc. Aggression to judges in a show ring is permitted. According to FBCA, socialization will not make a fila friendly to strangers.
Many homeowner's and renter's insurance will not cover you if you own a fila brasileiro.