I ignore why those dogs were at that show, as they were not in competition (being the Presa not recognized by the FCI), but they were standing aloof in a corner with a small group of people, so I got closer and asked them: “sorry, what breed is this?”. “Presa Canario” said one of these. I would never forgot that name: it was just what I was searching for.
It has not passed a lot of time (about 10 years) but the things were very different: the Internet was not so spread and I managed to get online occasionally in a pioneristic Internet Cafè; besides the amount of available informations was not evenly comparable to that of today.
Anyhow, just after about two years the things were starting to change: at home I had a connection to the Internet and besides having taken the decision to become a Presa owner, I matured the idea to realize a site dedicated to this breed which impressed me so much. Between the 1997 and the 1998 I became the owner of my first Presa Canario, Xuròn de Irema Curtò (just “Tigre” for me), and roughly at the same time the first version of the site was born, in english and italian, that even if poor as far as graphic is concerned, gave good results: I started to come in contact with other enthusiasts of the breed, just like me, but coming from all the world.
Through the years ElPresa.com became more and more articulated, going through two different versions and graphic looks (these times only in english), and by dozen of thousands of contacts. The most important aspect was just the ongoing building of the community, made up by the sharing of the experiences and the exchange of informations, that took the community till the present days, providing the Presa Canario enthusiasts with a common meeting point, making it possible for several people to organize themselves and to share the efforts beared with the breed betterment in mind. For this, I also have to thank my friend Dave Espinoza, which always believed in the project and gave (and is giving) a hand with the forum moderation, besides having constantly provided interesting discussion cues, stimulating the exchange of informations.
In 2004 I went to the Canaries, more precisely to Tenerife, where besides having seen one of the most stunning places in my whole life, I got my second Presa Canario, a female, Nora de Irema Curtò. After few months I decided to upgrade the site: the present version, the fourth, represent a further step into an expansion direction, as the contents are now provided besides than in english, also in spanish (and this is a due act, as this is a spanish breed) and italian, with the hope that the community may become more and more extended and organized, and that the site may be an informative tool for a wider range of persons. The graphic look of the site wants to pay homage to original land of our breed, the Canary Island: the shapes of the islands of an agile Presa Canario are drawn near that of a Presa Canario (black, not at random) is the first clue, while the chromatic matching of yellow and blue alternating with white (the three colours of the Canary flag) is the proof.
Our objective (saying “mine” would be very restrictive, seen the number of persons that in these years have helped me and are still supporting my work) is to “promote the breed Presa Canario, preserving his original denomination and his traditional morphologic and temperamental characteristics”. At the same time we would like people to be conscious about the topics which are of vital importance for the future of the breed, as the systematic testing of the temperament and the methodical certification of absence of hip dysplasia for the dogs used in the selection process.
We also want to give a hand, as far as we can, to those unlucky Presa Canarios that after having been abandoned by their owner are now searching for someone to adopt them (this mainly occurs in the United States of America, where the breed is quite spread and where inevitably these episodes take place): with some collaborators we are trying to create a network of “foster homes” and people who are willing to adopt these poor dogs, that in many case risk to be put to sleep. Frequently in order to reach the places where these dogs are and evaluate them, or temporarily place them in a foster home, there are some costs to be covered, to which you will be able to participate by sending a donation for the Rescue Campaign. We will inform you about our activity and the goals reached thanks to your donations.
Another way to help us to reach our objectives is to send a secure donation to support the maintaining costs of the site.
Finally, we are constantly in search of help in order to widen our contents: if you want to contribute to our project you can collaborate with us: we are searching for enthusiasts for text translations from english to spanish or italian and vice versa.
A sincere thanks for your visit and a warm greeting to all the Presa Canario fanciers!