If the canoe in question was a quality canoe to begin with there is little likelyhood of the boat becoming "hogbacked" due to the the way it is being stored. When you think about it, how is the way it is currently being stored different than storing it upside down on sawhorses? It isn't.
If you want to check the boat there are several ways to do it. The easiest way would be to set the boat right side up on a flat level surface and pour a glass of water into the center of the boat. If the water stays were you put it it's ok, if it runs to the ends wipe the water out and go look for another boat.
You could do the same thing by using a yardstick or any 3 foot or longer straight piece of wood or tubing or a string line etc. if you don't want to dump water in someone's boat.
Lay the straight edge along the centerline of the upside down boat and check for air space between the straight edge and the boat's bottom.
If you check it this way a slight gap, 1/2 inch or less will not likely be an issue because once the boat is loaded it will more than likely force the bottom deeper in the water.
If you have a couple of people with you, or a roll of tape, you can use a stringline to check the boat to see if it is hogbacked, and to check the alignment of the boat. Place the stringline on the upside down boat at either stem, the end of the boat where the bottom curves up, and draw it taught by hand or by taping it.
Again check for a gap between the stringline and the bottom. You can also sight along the stringline from end to end to see if the bottom of the boat is misaligned relative to the ends. This can be an indication that the boat was wrapped around a mid stream obstruction and bent by the force of the current.
I hope this helps. Good luck with your search!
Tim Murphy AKA Goobs
YakCatcher Rod Holder
URCHIN Portable Anchor
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