Known for impeccable attire, leather jackets, perfect hair, and stylish shoes, his charisma was unmatched. His generosity knew no bounds, and his enduring legacy lives on in his beautiful children. While it's impossible to name all the great Mastini he bred or owned, one stands atop the Mastini world – his grand champion.

Multi Champion Carnera Della Graotta Azzurra, Peppino Siano and Patrizio De Vitale (white shirt).

Juan Carlos:

First of all, I would like to say that I am honored to have you in my Colosseum community. Thank you, Lia!

Neapolitan Mastiff Patrizio De Vitale

Lia De Vitale (in black) showing a puppy under judge Archt. Giuseppe Alessandra.

Lia De Vitale:

JC, the honor was all ours, being part of your wonderful Colosseum. When Patrizio joined, he was impressed to see his Mastiffs represented in the Colosseum but also a bit disappointed that someone had used his photos without informing him. I remember well that Maria Rita helped him by starting a post, reaching out to people worldwide who knew him, not only for his Mastiffs but also for being a fair and helpful person. Anyone who knew him in person can testify to that.

Juan Carlos:

You can start by telling us how you met and began sharing your life with one of the greatest Mastinari in history, Patrizio De Vitale.

Lia De Vitale:

I was a girl of 17 when I met him; I worked in a shop, and he was our customer. We fell in love, and as we got to know each other, I discovered his great passion: the Mastino. He took me to his kennel, where there were these enormous dogs that I had never seen before. He taught me to pet them and not be afraid; he always said they were big babies and playful giants, reassuring me that these dogs would never harm me. He loved Mastiffs so much but was ALSO a great lover of animals, from the smallest to the largest. He rescued many strays, cared for them, and treated them. I never thought that joining him would fill our house with animals; I nicknamed him Saint Francis. He took care of and loved his Mastiffs as if they were his children. With him, I started loving this breed. As I helped with the puppies, he taught me to take care of them. It was hard work, but I was happy because I knew he was pleased when the puppies survived and grew. I had three children with Patrizio, and as they grew, there was always a Mastino around. I remember the long walks with Carnera and our son Umberto. Susy, when she was little, adored Uragano; she would jump on him as if he were a pony, as you can see in some photos on the Colosseum. Susy is the girl holding his paw without any fear, and they had a great bond. Whenever we went on vacation, we took one with us.

Susy with Uragano.

Juan Carlos:

Tell us more about Patrizio; share his passion.

Lia De Vitale:

His passion was excessive. If I told you about the diet he gave his dogs, you might not believe it, yet it's true. For example, milk, yogurt, fish, pureed legumes, boiled and minced cabbage, pasta, rice, cereals, white and red meats, well-cooked offal.

Juan Carlos:

For many years, Patrizio's work was not known abroad; everyone thought that great champions like Carnera were owned by Siano.

Lia De Vitale:

I want to clarify once and for all the relationship between Patrizio and Siano. There has often been confusion over the years. At that time, my husband was not familiar with registering dogs for shows, so Siano did it for him. Patrizio was very shy and reserved, and Siano volunteered to take the dogs to the ring at various shows, but the dogs belonged to my husband.

Peppino Siano with Multi Champion Carnera Della Grotta Azzurra.

Juan Carlos:

Please share your impressions of your past Mastiffs with us.

Lia De Vitale:

Among the most beautiful Mastiffs we had, I remember Carnera's sons and daughters: Uragano, Ogan, Tempesta, Nikita, Penelope, Anita, Finalmente, Bongo. But according to him, none of them could be compared to Carnera. In each of his dogs, he recognized both the strengths and small flaws. If he realized that one of his dogs was not show-worthy, he wouldn't take it. At the same time, if he saw a beautiful dog at a show, he knew how to compliment the owner and applaud.

Uragano de Vitale.

Patrizio de Vitale with Ogan, photo Ronny Anderson.

Nikita, mother of Finalmente and sister of Ogan.

Penelope De Vitale.

Anita by Vitale, photo Ronny Anderson.

Patrizio de Vitale with Finalmente, photo Ronny Anderson.

Juan Carlos:

Patrizio leaves a heavy Mastiff legacy to you. How do you plan to continue your breeding?

Lia De Vitale:

Patrizio and Santino had been friends for a long time and chose to continue working together for this breed. Santino was the right person for Patrizio, similar to him, with the same feelings and abilities, to expand a breeding that we now call PatrizioItalia. Santino was happy to give it his name.

Juan Carlos:

In difficult times, the friendship and support of Santolo Ardolino were evident. What are your current projects?

Lia De Vitale:

Today, I hope to, together with him, grow this beautiful breeding with fine subjects. Although I know the work will be tough, I will give my all to contribute as best I can, helping Santino in raising the puppies as I always did with Patrizio. I hope for success in our breeding, hoping for a beautiful champion, hoping that the deserving ones will be rewarded (It is worth noting that this special relationship was short-lived, and the collaboration between Lia and Santino ended swiftly after this interview).

Multi Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra, photo stamp date January 19, 1997.

Multi Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra.

An eccentricity with Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra, strapped to a small carriage.

Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra, showcasing impeccable conformation. Photo Ronny Anderson.

Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra! Photo Ronny Anderson.

Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra showcasing a robust physique.

Resting at Scisciano Champion Carnera Della Grattoa Azzurra. Photo Ronny Anderson.

Lia De Vitale, Naples Italy.